COMING SOON TO A TV SCREEN NEAR YOU....(if you're one of our many readers from America)!
QPTV in New York but, at that time, nothing concrete was agreed. Since then - many emails, five transatlantic phone calls and three actual meetings in Dublin later - I can confirm that a format, visual and speech, introduced and expanded on, on screen, by yours truly, once a week in an hour-long programme - has been agreed between ourselves here in '1169 Towers' and the Queens Public Television company!
Yes indeed, readers - we are taking this thing straight to television, from a TV studio here in Dublin, first, but if it works as well as we have been assured it will, then I'll be doing the programme, live, from New York, once a week, with the first such programme to be filmed here within the next week or so. Sandra and Ruth from QPTV ("...QPTV is committed to providing a forum for the open exchange of ideas and opinions free from censorship regardless of race, creed, religion, country of origin, gender or sexual orientation.....QPTV has become the destination for journalists visiting from abroad, especially from those countries that are in a struggle for liberation.....we are committed to assisting everyone to exercise their First Amendment right to free expression....we’ve also covered other hard hitting and controversial issues like building a mosque near Ground Zero, the disturbing reality of illegal gun violence, and the death penalty......virtually every culture, religion, political point of view or opinion can be found on our four channels. QPTV is democracy in action......") [hello again, girls!] told us that they have long been admirers of our efforts on this blog and (as confirmed by our stats) we have a large, constant readership in the New York area, as well as in other parts of that great city and in other cities in the USA as well. I recently filmed a promo piece with the station and that is currently being aired, and the feedback from it is "highly encouraging" , I have been told, with three NYC radio stations picking up on it - two of those radio stations emailed this blog and I done a twenty-minute ("very well received") interview with both of them, which prompted two NYC-based newspapers to follow-up on the story.
However : where exactly that leaves this blog - the 'printed' version as opposed to the up-coming 'sound and visual' version - will be decided in the next few days and we will definitely make an announcement here re same next Wednesday (8th April 2015) as the arrangements will have been finalised by then. As it's looking now, as I type this, we will be the first Irish republican blog to be broadcast from 'the Queen's TV', so to speak.....! (MORE LATER - ON WEDNESDAY 8TH APRIL 2015....).
RSF EASTER COMMEMORATIONS, DUBLIN, 2015.
the 'Irish Volunteer Monument' (near the Phibsborough Crossroads) where Fian Seán Healy was executed during the 1916 Rising. Also, a total of 1,500 republican leaflets will be assembled in 'packs' and distributed at the Dublin city centre commemoration on Easter Monday. Hope to see you at one, or another, or all three!
THE PRICE OF PEACE......
The women decorated the trees, sang and talked, and in the mid-afternoon there was a discussion about 'doing an action'. For two hours they sat in a circle and tried to reach a consensus on some of the proposals - that they walk in a circle in front of the gate of the US Ambassador's residence, or coat the palms of their hands with red paint and make red handprints, symbolic of the blood of the oppressed, on the white wall around the Ambassador's residence, as a counterpoint to the official ceremony in Galway. Some women disagreed with the proposals and the discussion ended with everyone free to do what they wished.
The women crossed to the front of the residence and some put red handprints on the wall, others walked in a circle, some stood and watched. The gardai moved in and began hauling the women away from the wall, carrying them back to the field ; some women just lay on the ground, others walked away. It was a minor incident, the gardai preventing 'graffiti' being put on the wall. But suddenly a car appeared, driving in among the protestors, and plainclothes gardai jumped out and arrested one of the women, pulled her into the car and drove off. That women was Petra Breathnach, a supporter of the 'Release Nicky Kelly Committee' (Kelly was to be released six weeks later) , and she was arrested under 'Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act' and taken into custody in Cabra garda station.
The position on that Saturday evening was that one woman had been lifted under the catch-all of 'Section 30' , the others had been told of some "edict" forbidding their presence in the park and their legal representatives had been unable to elicit any further information from the gardai at the scene. Barrister Ruth-Anne FitzGerald contacted Cabra garda station and spoke to Detective Inspector Conroy, who said that in the absence of the Superintendent he was in charge and he was satisfied there had been a breach of the Commissioner's new order. He was unable or unwilling to give the barrister any information about the content of this new order. (MORE LATER).
The last two years have seen the severing of an important link with the PLO ; the British Army says that the Towerstream cargo, at least in part, came via the PLO. Now Yasser Arafat says the link has been formally ended in return for Dublin and EEC recognition of his cause. Some mystery, however, surrounds the link with Libya's Colonel Gaddafi, which most people thought had ended with the deportation of the last remaining Provo contact man, in early 1975. Now there is speculation that the link might have been re-established. When the IRA's Director of Operations, Brian Keenan, was arrested in March last year and sent to Britain for trial on offences related to the 1974/75 bombing campaign there, he had on him a torn half of a Libyan dinar bill; a recognition signal that was used a lot during the 1972/75 liaison between Gaddafi and the IRA.
Another curious piece of the Libyan jigsaw has also recently come to light. In August last year a shady arms dealer, called Sadiq Baahri , who operated his arms business from a legitimate export agency in Athens, disappeared while flying in his private jet on a flight from Cairo to Jeddah, in Saudi Arabia. Reliable Arab sources in London now say that Baahri had incurred Gaddafi's displeasure for refusing to arrange an IRA arms shipment. The rumour in Libya, say the sources, is that Libyan jet fighters forced his plane down at Benghazi, where he now languishes in jail.
In its campaign between 1977 and 1980, the Provisional IRA has demonstrated what for the RUC and British Army must be an irritating ability to switch tactics. Along the targets chosen for one to nine month campaigns have been businessmen, off duty UDR men, a sustained attack on the British Army and prison warders and the killing of prominent people like Lord Mountbatten. Bombing targets have switched from coordinated, six county wide attacks and smaller scale attacks on commercial premises, government buildings, hotels, banks and factories, to the blasting of town and village centres and methods of attack have also varied : blast incendiaries were introduced in 1977, until the holocaust of La Mon, when they were temporarily dropped. Car bombs have made a recent come back, but so far only in rural towns. Intruder detonated bombs and long delay fused bombs were introduced during that period but while these and other more well known devices like culvert bombs and land mines accounted for heavy British security forces' casualties, it was the introduction of the radio detonated bomb in 1978 but especially in 1979 that really re-imposed the IRA's threat. (MORE LATER).
ON THIS DATE (1ST APRIL) 49 YEARS AGO : PAISLEY ESTABLISHES THE UCDC/UPV.
'UCDC' poster/leaflet from the early 1970's.
On the 1st April 1966, some of the pro-British minority in the six north-eastern counties of Ireland who deemed themselves to be 'loyal' to Westminster, led and supported by Ian Paisley, established two groups with the intention of preventing nationalists ("Catholics", as Paisley and his bigoted followers described them) from seeking, never mind obtaining, 'civil rights'. The so-called political front was named the 'Ulster (sic) Constitution Defence Committee'(UCDC) and it was guided by a body of 13 people, with Ian Paisley acting as its Chairperson (that 12-person leadership committee were known as Paisley's 'Twelve Apostles') and Hercules Mallon as its Secretary. Also, well known loyalist Noel Doherty, a printer by trade and one of many Orangemen who were members of the B-Specials, was a founding member of that group. The 'UCDC' was one of many Paisley-inspired groups which he established primarily to boost his own profile and secondary in an attempt to 'keep Catholics in their place' ie second-class citizens : on this occasion, he used the scare tactics of so-called 'political reforms' which the then 'Prime Minister of Northern Ireland' (sic) , Terence O'Neill, was allegedly considering (which loyalists were afraid would be of benefit to nationalists) and the then up-coming 50th Anniversary commemorations of the 1916 Rising.
In order that the 'UCDC' should be able to enforce its 'recommendations', a paramilitary wing was established - the 'Ulster Protestant Volunteers' (UPV), a loyalist paramilitary grouping, which grew to be many thousands strong and armed itself courtesy of Noel Doherty's 'B Special' connections. The 'UPV', which 'unofficially' shared membership with the UVF, let it be known that it shared the objectives of its 'parent' group, the 'UCDC', and that it supported the Constitution of same - '...(We are) pledged by all lawful methods to uphold and maintain the Constitution of Northern Ireland as an integral part of the United Kingdom as long as the United Kingdom maintains a Protestant Monarchy and maintains the terms of the Revolution Settlement...no one who has ever been a Roman Catholic is eligible for membership...only those who have been born Protestants are eligible for membership....no serving member of the RUC can join any UPV division...(we reserve the right) to use all means that may be found necessary to defeat the present conspiracy (and) take whatever steps we think fit (to maintain the present constitutional position...)'
This loyalist two-headed serpent was most active until the early 1970's, after which it started to fade as its members drifted into other loyalist groupings, both 'official' (B Specials, British Army, RUC, UDR) and 'unofficial' (UDA, UVF, UFF) but it served its purpose as its leader, Ian Paisley, gained a political platform which he would later use to obtain a political career for himself and his family, but the legacy of bigotry he maintained is still with us to this day, even though he himself is no longer here to fan those flames.
TAKE IT DOWN FROM THE MAST....
Irony is lost on these shameless gombeens as they prepare to dress-up and parade from school to school to promote a flag they once fought against (excuse the terminology in this link, as it equates "the country" with "the State") : 'Every school in the country is to get an Irish flag in the run up to the 1916 centenary commemorations next year....a member of the Defence Forces will deliver a tricolour to the estimated 4,000 primary and post-primary schools in the State between now and the 100th anniversary of the Easter Rising....'
The Free State Army and the political institution which financially, physically and morally supports it and all it stands for have long since more than just turned their back on that which the Irish Tricolour represents as they not only support but collude with the foreign institution and its military forces which continue to occupy, militarily and politically, six Irish counties. Indeed, one of their 'placed pets' in one of the British political houses in this country should be, by right, even more perplexed than his fellow ex-'rebel' colleagues at this 'flag parade' as he now supports the same Free State military which he and his colleagues once condemned as, at best, 'ineffectual'. 'Take it down from the mast...' indeed.
GERRY , EMMA AND TIM.
'the Druid stage' where he only wants to hug and cuddle them (....but, as anyone reading this that has an Irish Mammy will confirm, we all know what the Ma says about what a hug and cuddle could lead to...!)
And no doubt that's how it started out for Emma - harmless, doing it because she had heard that other people do it, so it probably only indicated to her that those others are 'in touch with nature' etc. So she tried it herself, as 'Ash' did, but.... "I love the feeling of skin-on-bark contact, which gives me a more pleasurable pain sensation, and the feel of his leaves against my skin makes me tingle....I look at other trees, but don't touch - I wouldn't cheat...I'd like to get married, but it would be a low-key ceremony with family..."(from here!)
But all is not lost for poor Emma - I've researched the young lady in question and can find no mention of whether she trampolines naked with a dog. Or with Tim. And no mention, either, of her wanting to marry the trampoline. I'll get my coat....!
..AND SPEAKING OF HUGGING/HUMPING INANIMATE OBJECTS...
And she's at it again : we recently wrote about Sinead's shenanigans with what she classed as Irish 'republicanism' - "...we need non-violent total civil disobedience. We have scaffolded and supported and continue to support a terrorist State which has never given a toss about children or women......we can't blame anyone but ourselves for this. We are cowards. Grateful for crumbs on tables and think we deserve nothing more. We are pathetic. An inexcusable disgrace to the courage of those who fought and died in 1916....ailing animals can have a compassionate death. People can't. What the fuck more evidence do you need? We are less than animals to the state and to the church who still run it.....I understand entirely why people would want to fight back. But I don't think it actually achieves anything. It doesn't bring back your lost people. I kind of like a peaceful life nowadays. I'd rather not get in trouble...frankly, I wish England had never left (sic) Ireland. I think we would be a lot better off...."
And, in direct contradiction to her 'wish', above, is this - "I thought about it for a while and realised that actually 1916 isn't finished.....what was promised in that proclamation hasn't happened....(we should) get off our butts and take our country..."
Confused? This should fully convince you that she's firmly 'out there' with Gerry, Emma and Tim : "...(I am) three-quarters heterosexual, one-quarter gay (and) in fact 99.999% vaginally oriented but have experienced the odd shall we say 'bark up the wrong tree' and immensely enjoyed it.....I recently read of a woman in America who married and regularly humps her truck. I don't yet own a truck but I'm beginning to understand her head space...." (from here.)
But, like Emma, there's hope for her yet. No mention of trampolines. Now, where did I put my coat....
Thanks for reading : see you here again on Wednesday, 8th April 2015, for more on our foolishly long-overdue 'Queen's Broadcast....' Sharon.