" 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, April 10, 2013

TRICKLE IT DOWN FOR THE TROOPS.

'THERE WILL BE ANOTHER DAY.....' By Peadar O'Donnell ; first published in January 1963.

The stationmaster at Fintown risked a 'phone call to me in Dublin to tell me I must do something about this at once, else "this other man who has come over to us " would think himself let down. I promised him that we would make an example of "the man from without" , but it turned out that by the time I was free to go to Donegal the matter had already been taken care of.

The Letterkenny bailiff , a boastful , innocent man who made too much noise , and felt safe once he had got a seizure out of the way into the law-abiding big-farmer countryside , had some big-mouthed government supporters in Letterkenny who encouraged him in his noise. Therein lay our salvation , for Pat Kelly of Bonagee , an old friend of mine from the days of my work in the Irish Transport and General Workers' Union , hearing the talk, went on the war path and had no difficulty in finding out who had bought the seized cattle.

Pat was as radical a Fenian as the countryside ever grew and, even though I don't know along what avenues he spread the word, John McMonagle and Jim Harkin came together with him to sneak the seized cattle from their new owner's farm and, driving all night, they landed them with Pat Harkin of Drumkeen in the grey of the morning. The police hunt for the cattle broke on such a scale that it scared both the farmer who bought them and the bailiff who seized them : this was war. (MORE LATER).

THE BETRAYAL OF 1916 -



- REVISIONISM EXPOSED.....

From 'IRIS' magazine, Easter 1991.

By Martin Spain.

Revisionism arrived at a timely moment to legitimise Dublin's inadequacies as the internal contradictions * of the Northern state became too much and British troops arrived amidst the debris to supposedly 'stabilise' the situation **.

This revisionist school prefers to see 1916 in terms of an anti-democratic blood sacrifice which achieved nothing, pre-empted the achievement of Home Rule by 'constitutional' means and was itself the wellspring of today's 'murderous campaign of the Provisionals'. Such people as Conor Cruise O'Brien , Garret Fitzgerald , Ruth Dudley Edwards , John A Murphy and Ronan Fanning are peddling what is fast becoming the accepted version of history in the 26 Counties.

Peter Beresford Ellis , in an article in the previous edition of 'IRIS' , made the point that these historians could be better described as "unionist fellow-travellers" : these respected academics masquerade as providing a 'balanced' view of Irish History , and claim that they can step back from the 'unhelpful' nationalistic emotions which surrounded the struggle for independence. But theirs is as subjective an analysis of history as any socialist's or nationalist's , and is tailored to support the establishment and the status quo ***.(* - "internal contradictions" , such as, perhaps, the Provisional Sinn Féin outfit administering British misrule in six Irish counties whilst at the same time professing their objective to be one of ending British misrule in those six counties! / ** re 'to stabilise' - that, ironically, is the same type of language that Mr Spain's colleagues in Provisional Sinn Féin are now using, to 'explain' the British military and political presence in six of our counties! / *** 'supporting the establishment and the status quo' must have had a different meaning then than it has now, as that is exactly what the PSF organisation is doing now!) (MORE LATER).


AND SPEAKING OF 'REVISIONISM'....
Attempting to re-invent the past , Provo style.

Picture the scene : It's 1988 and you are in Belfast , one amongst tens of thousands of mourners attending the funeral of three PIRA members who were killed in Gibraltar : you are aware that the British Army , the RUC and their (and other) various 'Special Units' are watching proceedings even though, for the most part, they are not visible.

Suddenly a loud explosion sends clay flying through the air and debris bounces off people, knocking them over, injuring them - panic ensues , as nobody is yet sure what is happening. Then you hear gunshots and more explosions, as people dive for cover , with those trying to flee tripping over them. The elderly can't dive for cover or run and small children are equally as helpless. Three mourners are killed and about fifty injured , but the perpetrator is caught : Michael Stone , a loyalist paramilitary , is caught running from the scene by mourners and taken away by his comrades in the RUC.

At the funeral of one of those killed by Stone , the procession is again attacked , this time by two armed men ,in plain clothes, in a car. Obviously fearing the worst, some of the mourners , at great personal risk, surround the car and block it from travelling anywhere, and remove the two armed men from inside it. Quickly identified as being members of the British occupation force , the two men are disarmed, subdued and taken from the scene by the PIRA. They are then executed.

Now , however, in an effort to 'excuse' and/or 'apologise' for this exercise in self-defence , and to integrate themselves further into the 'establishment' from which they draw their financial and moral succor , those that represented the PIRA at that time have declared that those two armed undercover British operatives were "courageous" and "decent" ! By implication, the apologist Jim McVeigh has practically stated that those resisting oppression are as guilty as the oppressor , the British government, and have thus insinuated that that whole period of resistance and self-defence was somehow 'wrong'. A poacher turned gamekeeper , stopping off along the road to Damascus to 'revise' the path he himself has left behind. Won't be long now until McVeigh and his Provisional Sinn Féin colleagues blame nature on the 'Troubles' in this country, having placed Ireland too near to England !


10TH APRIL 1923 - NO COMPROMISE ACCEPTABLE.

- IRA General Liam Lynch , 29, shot dead in Tipperary by Free State forces.

On the morning of 10th April , 1923, Free State Army General Prout , Divisional Commander of the State Army in Waterford, ordered his British-armed troops to scour the South-West Tipperary and West-Waterford area for an IRA unit which he knew to be in the vicinity. That IRA unit was led by General Liam Lynch , who was a particular target for the then new anti-republican Leinster House institution , as he had laid down a marker for them : "We have declared for an Irish Republic and we will not live under any other law....the war will go on until the independence of our country is recognised by our enemies, foreign and domestic."

In a gunfight that took place in the Knockmealdown Mountains in South Tipperary, Liam Lynch sustained a bullet wound which incapacitated him and, with the Free Staters moving in on their position, he ordered his unit to proceed without him , as they were carrying important intelligence documents : as armed Free State troops cautiously approached the dying man , he identified himself to them by name , telling them that he was the Chief-of-Staff of the Irish Republican Army , and asked that they get him a priest and a doctor, as he knew he was dying. The Staters assembled a makeshift 'stretcher' out of their rifles and carried the dying rebel to Nugents pub in a town called Newcastle from where he was taken to the hospital in Clonmel , where he died shortly after 8pm that night , the 10th April, 1923 , 90 years ago today. You can read the finer details on the life and death of this brave Irishman here.


10TH APRIL 1998 : A LINGERING COMPROMISE.

RSF 'VOTE NO!' leaflet from 1998.

The Stormont Treaty (aka the 'Good Friday Agreement') was signed on this date (10th April) 15 years ago after almost two years of talking (or 'negotiations' , as those involved would have it) . For Irish republicans to engage genuinely with Westminster , a British military and political withdrawal would have to be on the table and negotiations proper could then be entered into in relation to the date of same ; the document that was signed 15 years ago today was a bad , weak compromise on behalf of nationalists (not republicans , who had no hand , act or part in this event , save to campaign against it) but it suited the British and their colleagues in Leinster House as it took the pressure off them and allowed them to try and present a 'peace achieved' scenario re what they term 'the Troubles'.

As with the 'Treaty of Surrender' , Sunningdale and Hillsborough , the Stormont Treaty is not what Liam Lynch gave his life for nor is it acceptable to republicans today.


A FAMILY HOUSE DOESN'T EARN AN INCOME , SO WHAT IS THERE TO PAY TAX ON ?

Property tax ? No Way.....

The denizens of 'The Big House' in Kildare Street in Dublin are in agreement with their employers in regards to squeezing extra money out of the unemployed and those who still have a job , in order that their own privileges be maintained and , despite the skin-deep 'objections' of the IMF's man in this corrupt State , it was agreed between them that a tax should be levied on the dwellings where those who pay tax on their earnings , their spend and their savings (if any) live , and 'bills' for same have already been dispatched.

Those of us who are genuinely opposed to this unjust tax will give a lively 'welcome' to the 'Big House' people and their friends this coming Saturday , 13th April 2013 , as they gather for croissants and wine in Dublin Castle : thousands of us will assemble on that day at 12.30pm at the Garden of Remembrance in Parnell Square and will march to their 'Castle'/Ivory Tower to deliver our message-'Property Tax ? Can't Pay , Won't Pay , Don't Pay , No Way !'

Hope you'll join us !


THATCHER'S BEQUEST.

The genuine 'Iron Ladies' - made so by Margaret Thatcher.

IT.

I curse the wretched evil

That makes me feel this way

That forces me to think of it

With every passing day.

It makes me hate and wait and wait

To hear it's dying breath

For that I'm sure it must endure

A slow and painful death.

It's loathed in Buenos Aires

Likewise in Crossmaglen

Despised in every closed down pit

From Kent to Bilsten Glen

It deprived men of their livelihood

It stripped them of their pride

It took their coal and gave them dole

Their dignity denied.

It tore apart communities

It devastated lives

It made enemies of neighbours

And left husbands without wives

It disregarded consequence

It killed both young and old

It privatised our heat and light

And left us dark and cold.

It undermined democracy

Sold council homes for votes

It hid the truth on Hillsborough

As history denotes

It robbed the poor to pay the rich

With unjust, unfair taxation

The price of which is being paid

By another generation.

It murdered Argentine conscripts

In the South Atlantic seas

Outside it's own exclusion zone

It let them drown or freeze

It delegated evil

From it's Whitehall ivory tower

It kept Mandela in prison

And Pinochet in power.

It wreaked it's trail of terror

'cross Ulsters rolling hills

It ran the Loyalist death squads

It sanctioned shoot to kill

It took three 'out' without a shout

In cold blood upon the Rock

And let ten Irish martyrs die

Of hunger in the Blocks.

But when it's day of judgement comes

As all things come to pass

We'll shed no tears nor mourn it's loss

Among the working class

Instead we'll meet on every street

In every town and city

And tramp it down into the ground

Without remorse or pity.

© Pakie Baker 8th April 2013.

"There is no such thing as Society" - Margaret Thatcher, 1988. "There is no such thing as Margaret Thatcher" - Society, 2013.


RAKING IT IN FROM HAVING SURRENDERED YOUR PRINCIPLES.

"This new 'republicanism' lark pays much better than our old jobs, eh, lads...."

Back in 1998 , when the Provos had let it be fully known that they and their 'republican objectives' were for sale if the price was right , Adams and McGuinness had come to realise from other 'poachers turned gamekeepers' that if the enemy offers only to bribe those at the 'Top Table' of the organisation attempting to sell itself , the project will fail. The biggest share of the financial gain will , obviously, be hoovered-up by the leadership of the prostitute party in question but, in order to give the 'new build' a steady foundation, funds must also be offered to the grassroots of the party being purchased.

And so it came to pass : one of the many 'community-based organisations' that was established at that time in order to occupy the thoughts, amongst other things, of some of the then recently demobbed activists was an organisation which named itself 'Coiste Na N-Iarchimi' , a beast which quickly grew to contain about 25 connected groups which required some 90 full-time staff to service. However , the Brits - having been down this road many times in other countries they 'kept the peace' in, before buying it - were experienced enough to bring in others to help share the financial cost , but those 'outside financial backers' (including an EU body , the 'Special European Union Programmes Body') , did not fully appreciate the manner in which such business is done here and actually expected - ha! ha! - accountability (and maybe ever concrete results, God bless their innocence!) as the cost of keeping this 'trickle-down' fund breached the £1 million (Sterling) mark. The whole set-up was examined and it was discovered that the company in question had been struck off the companies register as it had not filed accounts and returns etc (after being told twice that it would have to file the missing paperwork) , prompting one of its Directors to claim that they did not have to file accounts like that to the Companies Office (!) and after which another Director , a prominent Provisional Sinn Féin member, resigned her seat as a Director.

Cynics amongst the readership of this blog would be of the opinion that the financial 'powers-that-be' in relation to the funding of this organisation have reached the conclusion that those in receipt of this 'trickle-down' money are not now likely to return to their previous militant incarnation and therefore the days of paying them to be elsewhere are over or , at the very least, numbered. More information on this issue can be had here , and all ye cynics and non-cynics can make up your own minds. Just don't expect to be paid for doing so.....


CABHAIR TO TAKE ON CHELSEA , SPURS , MAN UNITED.....



....SUNDERLAND , STOKE CITY , NEWCASTLE UNITED AND MAN CITY !

Or so the Events Manager in the 'Hotel Raffle' informed us , anyway ! That kind Gentleman has put us poor minions from the raffle committee 'on notice' that, on this coming Sunday (14th April 2013) , all the above-mentioned soccer games will be played , plus some GAA fixtures , horse racing and a local game of road bowling and that all of them (except the latter, apparently) will be televised. Normally , we could gladly get through our Sundays without knowing that information (!) but the Manager is only too aware that a guaranteed full house for him and his staff means a busier day than usual for those of us that run the monthly raffle for the Movement and, as that raffle is due to be held on that same busy sports day, we , too, are going to be run off our feet.

He actually rang looking for more tickets to sell to his customers , as the forty we had left him to sell are all sold already , but we had to disappoint him : there are no spare tickets for this raffle and we are not expecting any returns before the actual raffle or on the day of it. Which means that myself and the other girls , on top of running a 650-ticket raffle, will have to apologise repeatedly on the 14th to literally dozens of soccer and GAA supporters why it is that not only did their team lose (!) but they have no chance at all in winning on the raffle because they haven't got a ticket for it nor will they be able to get one. Should we get out of there in one piece , we'll list the winners on this blog and give a quick report on the event as soon as we can!


BEEN THERE , DONE THAT - DOING IT AGAIN !

Central Park , surrounded by the city of New York!

I have been there before , in great company , to meet great company - and before this year makes it to the half way mark , I'll be there again ! The same gang of us that wrought havoc (!) on the shops ,bars and residents of that gentle city in 2009 and 2011 will shortly be doing so again! We have everything arranged (we believe...) , from the 'baby'-sitters to the milk cancelled and all the way back 'round again to the house-sitters : holidays booked from the jobs , credit unions squeezed to within an inch of our lives and the partners and kids already assured that , yes, of course we'll miss them....!

In February last , our friends and colleagues in New York that provided apartments , transport and storage space (for our mini-mountain of shopping bags!) for the five of us in 2011 asked if we were thinking of visiting again (and we were , but we didn't want to appear too 'greedy' in asking if we could have use of the same apartments etc!) and they suggested that , if we were, we could help ourselves to the same lodgings as before , and transport around the city and to New Jersey etc would be available to us , no fee, no strings attached ,come and go as we please etc, as before - so naturally we jumped at the opportunity and in the last few days it all came together for us and the final arrangements were made !

As I mentioned before , the five of us are very closely matched , socially and politically , and, whilst I'd be lying if I said that 5th Avenue and the Diamond District etc doesn't interest us , it's not where we spend most of our time : we explore , and try and get a feel of the real New York, the gritty side and, although it's only a short-term 'solution' , we help out , financially , when we encounter such scenes , which is often, unfortunately. Anyway - I'll keep you posted about when it is that I'll not be posting : (MORE LATER !).

Thanks for reading, Sharon.