" A wealth of information..."

"1169 And Counting is a wealth of information on our Republican past and present , and demonstrates how the Irish political landscape , like that of any nation, will never be a black and white issue..."

(From the ‘e-Thursday’ section of the ‘Business Week’ supplement of the ‘Irish Independent’ , 21st August 2008.)

IRISH BLOG AWARDS 2017 - ooops! It seems that our entry application was "not completed in time to be considered.." (?) and, as such, we are not now in the running. But we wish all the best to the successful entrants and to the organisers, and we hope all goes well for them on the day!

Wednesday, May 30, 2007


From 'The United Irishman' newspaper, January 1958 .

'The Sunday Independent' newspaper of December 8 , 1957 , carried a front page lead-story of Garda 'precautions' along the border on the 26-County side , and noted - " The RUC maintain a similar watch on their side of the border but within the last two weeks a band of six men managed to slip over from the South , disarm a two-man patrol and get back across the border . A party of men who tried to blow up an RUC tender also got back to the South despite the fact that radio-cars from nearby RUC stations were on the move within half an hour of the ambush taking place . "

This type of reporting is playing Britain's propaganda game in Ireland : it is absolutely unfounded and what is more the perpetrators know well that it is unfounded . 'The Sunday Press' newspaper on that same date carried a report - unconfirmed and as it turned out totally unfounded - that a man may have been killed in the blowing up of the Belleek Customs Post. Is all this accidental ?

'The Irish Press' newspaper of December 9 , 1957 , when reporting arrests of five men in Waterford , did not give the reason for those arrests : putting up posters for 'The United Irishman' newspaper ! Those men were lodged in filthy cells and held without charge or explanation . This fact was not reported .
(Next : 'Prisoners on bread and tea in Mountjoy' - from the same source)


Derry , once the cockpit of the Northern Irish conflict , has become quarantined in apathy , grimness and deprivation , writes Seamus Deane , the Derry-born poet and writer . In a return look at his native city he finds that its demoralisation has disturbing implications .
From 'FORTNIGHT' magazine, 1983.

Derry has still a way to go before it rivals Belfast in its poor social structures , but what both cities are breeding now is another updated form of the siege mentality . This is the sort favoured by those who believe in authoritarian measures , distrust dissent and believe that force comes first , law second . The beginnings of this situation are visible in Derry already - the cathedrals are beginning to lose their symbolic significance .

In their place come the new 'security' barracks and , confronting them , the new and increasingly violent housing estates . The 'other' Derry is still just visible . But no more than that .
(Next - 'Out Of The Womens Ghetto' , from 1983)

John O Shea was a small farmer and republican . He died at his Kerry home in October 2001 within hours of being released from Garda custody . The inquest into his death raised more questions than it answered and now Kerry County Council has backed calls for a public inquiry . Did John O Shea die from natural causes or is there a more sinister explanation ?
By Mairead Carey.
From 'MAGILL' magazine, May 2003 .

For Michael Finucane , the case shows the inadequacy of the coroner's court system - " The European Court of Human Rights has set down standards that inquests are supposed to meet but the state breaks every one of them . There is no right to legal aid for the families , no right to material in advance of the inquest . All questions about John O' Shea's arrest and detention were ruled 'off limits' . The office of the coroner needs to be drastically updated - the world has moved on and it's time our legislation moved with it ."

(Next - ' What Rough Beast Is This , It's Hour Come Round At Last?' , from 1987)