" 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, June 27, 2007


From 'The United Irishman' newspaper, January 1958 .

Armoured Car Hit and Abandoned by Crew .

A heavily armoured car was put out of action and badly damaged after a land-mine exploded at Cassidy's Cross near Kinawley in County Fermanagh, following an ambush by guerrillas on December 1 , 1957 . A second armoured car sped on when the explosion occured .

The RUC issued a false statement claiming that a 'Land Rover' had escaped damage : a 'Land Rover' did appear on the scene , but it was after the armoured vehicle had been towed away and photographers were told that was the car hit by the land-mine ! Pictures appeared in the media showing the 'Land Rover' as Stormont attempted to minimise the damage caused .

The ambushers hit the second armoured car in the two-car patrol as it crossed over a culvert . The leading vehicle paused long enough to take the injured occupants to safety - the IRA guerrillas did not fire on them as they were removed from the armoured vehicle . The injured RUC men are believed to have been taken to Enniskillen Hospital: the RUC did not attempt to engage their attackers , being distracted as they were by the huge crater which the explosion blew in the roadway.......


From 'Gralton' magazine, August/September 1983.
By Gene Kerrigan.

The 'X-Every-Five-Years' cliche was finally killed-off by 'The Great Capitalist Plot Against Socialist Cliches of 1981/1982' , which involved staging three general elections within eighteen months . The other reason for the decline of the cliche was the greater readiness of the Left to intervene in elections : no count centre was complete without the comrade with the calculator -

" Okay .... ," the comrade would say , "...here's the way I see it . If 93% of the Fine Gaeler's surplus goes to the Labour guy , and if we get 34 votes from his surplus - which puts us above Sean Sugarloaf Mountain O' Looney (Ind) so that he gets eliminated first - and then if the Labour guy is elected next and we get 97% of his surplus , then we'll come within 800 votes of saving our deposit..."

The purpose of this article is not to revive the should we/shouldn't we argument about electoral politics . Most of us long ago answered that one - " It depends." But it is worthwhile , for the benefit of the comrades with the calculators , drawing a map of the electoral territory in which they are operating , and pointing out the hostility of the natives.......


From 'IN DUBLIN' magazine, 'Election Special' , 1987.

Politics isn't just about winning elections and holding onto power , it is also about a country's sense of self . We expect our leaders to reflect us as well as represent us . We are an interesting and enigmatic people and we deserve a similar kind of leader and they don't come any more interesting and enigmatic ('1169...' Comment - try 'devious' and 'arrogant'..) than Charles J. Haughey .

Frightening , too , maybe . But the relationship of a people to its leader should , like a love affair , have an element of risk , of danger , to it . This has been missing for a long time . We have no choice : let us embrace our destiny .

[END of 'What Rough Beast Is This , It's Hour Come Round At Last?']
(Next : 'Crisis - Which Crisis?' : from 1987)