Wednesday, February 15, 2012

By Peadar O'Donnell ; first published in January 1963.

It was a near thing that the agitation did not burn itself out within the few townlands committed to it before other districts became involved. It was not easy , so late in the day as 1926, to convince even neighbour districts that this issue was vitally related to the independence struggle, since nobody raised it when the War of Independence was at its height.

The current annuity by itself , unrelated to a national issue, was not a matter of any great concern, and so for a time a few townlands stood alone. There is little left today of many of the townlands in which this agitation was cradled - they were a remnant of the Irish of history with little or no place in Irish life : its economy bypassed them. The Republic might have brought them back into it but its defeat sealed their fate. So they left, following well-beated paths into strange lands, a firm, gay people who blamed nobody for their lot.

It became them to make a proud stand against 'The Sherriff' before they set out, for, so to speak , that was where they came in - the prelude to Kinsale and its sequel. It would ill become me not to help them leave behind them some word of what they did. Indeed , I, too, might have failed them but for Maurice Moore. It is fitting that it should be from him the push came to make me write this, for he came to the aid of the townlands when they had few friends. He would like to be remembered with them , and they would like that, too.

For myself there is the further reward that this booklet is a footnote to Liam Mellows's 'Notes From Mountjoy Jail....'

THE PETER BERRY PAPERS....... The Top Secret Memoirs of Ireland's Most Powerful Civil Servant : Dirty Tricks, Election '69/ Spying on a Unionist Politician/ Keeping the (State) Taoiseach informed/ The Garda Fallon Murder/ Advice to Jack Lynch- 'Fire the pair of them...'/ Vivion De Valera's advice to O'Malley/ Rumours of a Coup D'Etat/ The Internment Plot, November 1970/ Secret Meeting with William Craig.
From 'MAGILL' magazine , June 1980.

" Of the two warrants signed by me , at the request of the Commissioner, one was never enforced after the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs consulted the Taoiseach : it was in connection with the attempted arms importation and it was in respect of a public servant (not a member of Parliament) who was deeply involved. I was no respector of persons and saw no reason for exclusivity but the Taoiseach took another view. This again made me - and the Garda Authorities - have doubts as to whether the Taoiseach was in earnest in directing on April 20th that the matter be fully investigated.

The manner in which postal censorship was exercised was dealt with by Mr Haughey in May 1963 and by the Taoiseach in 1970 (Vol. 246 , No. 7, Col. 1332) and by Mr O' Malley in the following month in even greater particularity but the answers of each were to the same effect.

I had been pilloried by 'Backbencher' , a gossip columnist in 'The Irish Times' , on several occasions in the 1960's for "tapping" telephones when I was completely innocent......."


ON THIS DAY (15th FEB) 91 YEARS AGO (1921)....

IRA Column 1920's , Ireland.

Paddy Moran and Joseph Rochford are charged with the 'murder' of Lieutenant Peter Ashmun Ames at 38 Upper Mount Street , Dublin, on 'Bloody Sunday', November 21st, 1920. Joe Rochford was acquitted but Paddy Moran was found guilty and sentenced to be hung. A large number of alibi witnesses had come forward for Moran but three British soldiers identified him as being in Upper Mount St.
Paddy Moran
"....was arrested on two occasions in early 1920. While in detention at Arbour Hill Prison, he was identified as being one of a group of men who had killed Lieutenant Ames at 38 Mount Street, Dublin. Moran strongly protested his innocence of any involvement in Bloody Sunday. His alibi was that he was at Mass in Blackrock (over four miles from the scene of the shooting) at the time and seen there by several people including a member of the Dublin Metropolitan Police...."
(From here.)


"Let the moon shine out tonight along the valley
Where those men who fought for freedom now are laid
May they rest in piece those men who died for Ireland
And fell in that Upton ambush for Sinn Fein....."

On the 15th of February 1921 a planned ambush by the I.R.A. of a train carrying British soldiers went wrong resulting in the death of three I.R.A. men and six civilians. The plan was to ambush the train when it stopped at Upton station : the station staff were detained by the I.R.A. as they waited for the train , which held about fifty soldiers of the Essex Regiment , to arrive. The British soldiers were dispersed throughout the train rather than concentrated in the central carriage as the I.R.A. believed. As a result of acting on faulty information, the civilian causalities were high and the British soldiers were in a better position to repel the IRA attackers. The three dead I.R.A. men were Lieutenant John Whelan a native of Liverpool England, Lieutenant Patrick O'Sullivan of Raheen, Upton , and IRA Section Commander Batt Falvey of Ballymurphy, Upton.


On the 20th February 1921 , IRA Captain James P. Aherne and Volunteer James Glavin , two members of an IRA 'Flying Squad' that was based in Cork, watched as one of their number headed off on a short stroll to a near-by stream to collect water for the IRA Squad : a poacher , an ex-British Army man, was on the far side of the stream laying traps for rabbits when he spotted the man , whom he knew to be an IRA member, and watched as the IRA man filled as many buckets as he could carry and observed as the Volunteer headed to the near-by cottage. The poacher reported the sighting to the local RIC and they , in turn , called-in a Black and Tan murder gang. The cottage was soon surrounded by these armed pro-British thugs.
Twelve I.R.A. Volunteers were killed and another two were executed later :

Captain James Aherne from Cobh County Cork was killed while jumping a fence 200 yards from the house.
Volunteer Jeremiah Aherne, from Midleton, County Cork ,was killed in action.
Volunteer Liam Aherne, from Midleton, County Cork, killed in action.
Volunteer Donal Dennehy, from Midleton, County Cork, killed in action.
Volunteer David Desmond, from Midleton, County Cork, killed in action.
Volunteer Michael Desmond, from Midleton, County Cork, was killed while attempting to fight his way back into the house.
Volunteer James Glavin, from Cobh, County Cork, was killed during the fighting.
Volunteer Michael Hallahan, from Midleton, County Cork, killed in action.
Volunteer Richard Hegarty, from Garryvoe, County Cork, killed in front of the house when attempting to go for aid.
Volunteer John Joe Joyce, from Midleton, County Cork, killed while attempting to re-gain entry to the farm house.
Volunteer Maurice Moore, from Cobh, County Cork, was captured during the Ambush,and was later executed at Cork Military Barracks on April 28th 1921.
Volunteer Joseph Morrissey, from Athlone, County Westmeath, killed during the fighting.
Volunteer Christopher O'Sullivan, from Midleton, County Cork, killed during the fighting.
Volunteer Paddy O'Sullivan, from Cobh, County Cork, was captured and was later executed at Cork Military Barracks, on April 28th 1921.

The Clonmult Martyrs Commemoration Committee will pay tribute to those brave IRA Volunteers on Sunday , 19th February 2012 : those attending are asked to assemble at the Courthouse , Main Street, Midleton , County Cork , at 2.30pm , from where a parade will be held to the Churchyard at Saint John the Baptist Church , where a wreath will be laid and an oration will be delivered by Mary Ward.

Thanks for reading,

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

"Too long a sacrifice
Can make a stone of the heart.
O when may it suffice?
That is Heaven's part, our part
To murmur name upon name,
As a mother names her child
When sleep at last has come
On limbs that had run wild.
What is it but nightfall?
No, no, not night but death;
Was it needless death after all?
For England may keep faith
For all that is done and said.
We know their dream; enough
To know they dreamed and are dead;
And what if excess of love
Bewildered them till they died?
I write it out in a verse -
MacDonagh and MacBride
And Connolly and Pearse
Now and in time to be,
Wherever green is worn,
Are changed, changed utterly:
A terrible beauty is born...."

(From here.)

EASTER SUNDAY , 8th April 2012 - Assemble at gates of Deansgrange Cemetery at 12.45pm for the march to the Republican Plot.

EASTER MONDAY , 9th April 2012 - Assemble at the Garden of Rememberance , Parnell Square , Dublin City Centre , at 1.45pm for the march to the GPO.


Sunday, February 12, 2012


The monthly raffle that was held in a friendly hotel today was , as expected, a roaring (!) success , with all available tickets sold-out within the first twenty minutes of our arrival on the premises : Pat , the Manager , and Anne and Tommy , the staff that were on-hand with us (and who tried their best to maintain order lol!) asked me to publish the results on the blog , as they want to display same on their big screen TV's in the bar and both lounges : Pat and Tommie insisted that I include a pic of myself , as well, but sure I'm far too shy to do that..... ;-) !

Anyway , to business : congrats to Derry , ticket number 578 , who won the €200 first prize , having been sold the ticket by our Anto (who was
DELIGHTED that he sold it.....!) , as was Mick , who sold the ticket that won the second prize (€100 - ticket number 276) to the winner of same , Ken. A lovely young colleen from Waterford , Shiela , and her friend , Eileen (also from Waterford) , who were in the hotel for a bite to eat (having broken many a heart in Dublin !) won 3rd and 4th prize respectively with ticket numbers 367 and 34 (€40 and €20 - but that wasn't the real reason the boys were cheering !) and , actually, two of those cheering boys - Tom and Joe - shared "a twenty-spot..." between them , when they won 5th prize with ticket number 711.
Bobby won prize number 6 (€20) , with ticket number 164 , which he bought from the mysterious 'Mr H' and , believe it or not , an RSF member from Kells in County Meath (whom we suspect was with Shiela and Eileen or , at least , was trying his best to be!) won the second-last prize of €20 with ticket number 683 and the last prize , €20, was won by Martin with ticket number 425 , and he was sold that ticket by our resident ticket-seller , Gavin.

It was yet again a very busy , active , noisey and financially beneficial event for the Movement , and the 'Raffle Crew' are to be praised for the professional manner in which they conduct the raffle , and themselves , each month. They are a credit to the organisation ! And finally - FAO Pat and Tommy : when our resident ticket-seller , Gav, confirms to me that this blog post is on display on your big screen TV's , I'll send the pic you asked for.....maybe....... ;-) !


....a quick word here on finances of another sort : the fact that the corrupt politicians in Leinster House and their business buddies in the property and banking sectors have busted this State wide open and surrendered themselves and , by default, the rest of us, to the sharks in Brussels and the IMF : said sharks have ordered their employees in Kildare Street to issue new income-tax forms , a pic of which we publish with this post -

- As those clowns in Leinster House would say : "Be a true Patriot , and fill it out for us...."
Perhaps they , too, should organise a monthly raffle - but that would be too much like hard work for them.....
Thanks for reading,