Friday, November 30, 2007

From 'The United Irishman' newspaper, January 1958 .

PATRICK PARLE came from Wexford Town , from where one of his friends had shown the Republican Movement a certificate of voluntary blood donation which stated : " This certificate is granted in recognition of the fact that Patrick Parle gave blood voluntarily for the benefit of others..." . That friend had added his own post script to the certificate - "...Patrick Parle gave the last drops of his blood voluntarily for the benefit of others on November 11 , 1957 , at Edentubber..."

MICHAEL WATTERS from County Louth added his blood too , to all the blood that has been spilled in Ireland so that we would be one nation and one people and one country with full control over our own affairs . He rests in the Republican Plot , Dundalk , beside his young comrades Paul Smith and Oliver Craven .

The greatest monument we can build to those seven martyrs is a free Irish Republic . The way we do it is by combining the strength of all our people to defeat an enemy with the resources of an Empire behind him and agencies of terror at his beck and call . Be proud of the risen nation and of the men and women who died for it !

(Next : ' Derry - A Strategy Of Neglect' , from 1983)

From 'The Phoenix' magazine , May 1983.

Most of Ireland's toxic waste has been dumped into a huge quarry near Kill , County Kildare. The place is known as 'Gavins Quarry' and it covers an area of about ten acres not far off the Nass dual carriageway . The principal depositor at this site has been Willie O' Brien , who is probably the largest disposer of industrial waste in the country .

Nobody knows for certain what toxic materials have been dumped here over the past fifteen years , but they do know that Willie O' Brien has been disposing of most of the toxic effluent from the principal chemical manufacturers in Ireland . Now , local residents are beginning to worry about the danger of living in the lee of this huge depository of poison . In March 1983 , after two years of court proceedings , Kildare County Council finally achieved the closure of the dump at Gavin's Quarry , Arthurstown , Kill , when a Patrick Gavin lost his appeal against a previous court order to close the pit .

The court heard the details of a report commissioned by the County Council from An Foras Forbartha which disclosed that traces of highly toxic chromium , cyanide and other heavy metals were found on the site . Properties up to a half-mile from the core of the pit were affected by serious pollution . Any further dumping of any kind would endanger local water supplies and rivers as the dump at this stage was full , the court was told.......

Between December 1983 and May 1987 , over 25 republican or nationalist funerals were systematically attacked by the RUC as a matter of deliberate British policy . The objective was to drive mourners off the streets so that later Britain could claim dwindling support for republicanism as 'evidenced' by the small numbers attending IRA funerals . As Jane Plunkett reports , the opposite happened . More and more people came out to defend the remains of republican dead , the RUC were exposed as being as brutal and sectarian as ever , and these two factors , combined with damaging international news coverage , eventually forced the British government to reverse its policy of attacking republican funerals .
From 'IRIS' magazine , October 1987.

The British government desperately wanted to stamp their 'authority' on nationalist areas , to make nationalists feel powerless against the might of the imperial state and thus to demoralise the struggle . That strategy was also to result in the murderous attack on the 1984 internment march , when John Downes was killed by a plastic bullet , in unprecedented heavy RUC shows of strength at recent Bloody Sunday commemorations in Derry and in restrictions , via the new Public Order Order, on rights to protest .

It had its counterpart too in the now-discredited use of paid-perjurers which aimed to demoralise nationalists by the de facto reintroduction of internment without trial and by the spreading of 'black propaganda' about the PIRA . So , in accordance with the new British strategy , there began to be a change in the situation which had held from the early 1970's , whereby the right of the bereaved , even in war , to bury their dead with dignity , was recognised by the PIRA and , on the whole , by the crown forces .

As late as November 1982 , at the funerals in Lurgan of PIRA Volunteers Gervase McKerr , Sean Burns and Eugene Toman, the RUC were nowhere in sight as a ten-member PIRA Colour Party in battledress flanked their comrades' coffins , or later when a Volunteer fired a single shot in tribute . That funeral service passed off peacefully and with dignity , as did a Republican funeral a little over one year later which passed an RUC Barracks with no attempted interference from those inside the structure.......