" 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!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

105th REPUBLICAN SINN FÉIN POBLACHTACH ARD FHEIS : NOVEMBER 14th AND 15th 2009 , DUBLIN - brief report and a few pics.

A section of the crowd voting on a motion.

The 105th Sinn Féin Ard Fheis , at which 112 motions were discussed , debated and argued over , was held on Saturday and Sunday , 14th and 15th November 2009 , in a Dublin hotel. It marked the last Ard Fheis at which Ruairí Ó Brádaigh presided over proceedings as President of the organisation , and also the last Ard Fheis at which Des Dalton (the new RSF President) was 'only' a member of the RSF Ard Chomhairle. Congratulations are due , and were loudly offered, to both men over that weekend , and no-one knows better than Des about the standards that have to be upheld. Ruairí has built-up a tight , secure and disciplined organisation during his years in charge , and without a doubt Des Dalton has a lot to live up to but , also without a doubt , he is more than capable of continuing on from where Ruairí left off.

Ruairí Ó Brádaigh's last RSF Presidential Speech , produced in booklet form , was a much sought-after item at the Ard Fheis , and is required reading for anyone interested in Irish Republicanism.

Starting to take their seats ,waiting for the Ard Fheis to start.

The Ard Fheis itself was a 100% success : such was the numbers of delegates , supporters and visitors in attendance that the smaller hall at the back of the main venue , where the RSF shop was set-up, had to be commandeered to accomodate the crowd -indeed, on more than one occasion the entry corridor was also suggested by the RSF 'Top Table' as a location where the overflow of people could at least find standing space ,which led to a war of words between said 'Table' and the RSF security team: the security people won that particular argument , but only just!
The State political police , the 'Special Branch' , were as expected , out in force , blocking the entry/exit to the hotel itself , and trying , unsuccessfully
(!) , to mingle in the bar and dining areas with the Ard Fheis crowds , but the RSF security teams were, as usual, on top of them at all times. A full report of the proceedings , including details of motions accepted and lost , will be carried in the December 2009 issue of 'Saoirse' , which goes to print on Wednesday the 2nd of that month. We publish a few pics from the weekend with this brief report , and look forward to a more detailed report in the December 'paper.

'Group' photo of most of the 'Top Table'.

Breaking for lunch....

....and coming back after lunch for 'Round Two' !

POW banner on display at the 2009 RSF Ard Fheis.

A typical Ard Fheis session - standing room only!

RSF 2009 Calendar , hundreds of which were sold (€5 each!) over the weekend.

As stated , a more in-depth report , and other (better quality!) photo's will be published in the December 2009 issue of 'Saoirse'. Finally , two of us from this blog were honoured to have been given 'Visitors Passes' for that Ard Fheis , as it was such a momentous occasion , more so than usual , and we left on Sunday afternoon with no doubt but that the new people in place are of such calibre that Irish Republicanism is , again, in safe hands.