'UNQUIET GRAVES' DOCUMENTARY, RTE ONE TV, WEDNESDAY 16TH SEPTEMBER 2020, 9.35PM...
'The story of the Glenanne Gang details how members of the RUC and UDR were centrally involved in the murder of over 120 innocent civilians. Now known as the Glenanne Gang, the group of killers rampaged through Counties Tyrone and Armagh and across into the Irish Republic in a campaign that lasted from July 1972 to the end of 1978...' (from here.)
'The Glenanne gang was based at a farm in Glenanne, County Armagh, in the 1970s. Its members are suspected of involvement in about 90 attacks during the Troubles, including the 1974 Dublin and Monaghan bombings, which killed 33 people, and the 1975 Miami Showband Massacre targeting one of Ireland's best known showbands...' (from here.)
Collusion between pro-British elements in Ireland and the forces of Westminster - political and/or military collusion, that is - has always been a part of the British occupation of Ireland, going back over 800 years ; we have, unfortunately, never had a decade in all that time when some political or military tout didn't make his/her presence felt, and the same is true today, except those operatives are more 'in-your-face' than they were in the past.
Since this State was spawned almost 100 years ago, those in political and military power have been pro-partition and have enforced that writ from a Westminster-imposed institution in Kildare Street in Dublin. They continue to benefit, financially, from being 'big fish in a small pond' and have no desire to change that position by having to work for a living in the changed political landscape that re-unification will bring, and if maintaining their position entails supporting overt and covert political and military manoeuvres by Westminster, anywhere in Ireland, then so be it.
Anyway - if it is broadcast as stated, it will be worth watching : RTE One television, tonight (Wednesday 16th September 2020), 9.35pm. It will hopefully be 90 minutes well spent!
ON THIS DATE (16TH SEPTEMBER) 175 YEARS AGO : DEATH OF AN IRISH REVOLUTIONARY, POET AND POLITICAL THEORIST.
In 1840 he contributed a series of articles on the state of Europe to the Dublin Morning Register — contending that a crisis was approaching in which Ireland would be able to obtain her legislative independence. He became an active member of the Repeal Association, where his ability and the sincerity of his character soon obtained for him an effective and influential position. At times he did not shrink from opposing O'Connell, for whom he had the greatest veneration.
In 1842, with a few other persons desirous of strengthening the spirit of nationality in Ireland, he started the Nation newspaper...' (from here.)
Thomas Osbourne Davis was a revolutionary Irish writer and was one of the leaders of the 'Young Ireland' movement. He was well educated, having studied in Trinity College, from which institution he received an Arts Degree and, at 24 years young, he was 'called to the Irish Bar'.
In 1842, Thomas Davis and two of his colleagues, Charles Gavan Duffy and John Blake Dillon, were walking together in the Phoenix Park in Dublin discussing, among other issues, no doubt, the 'Hughes/Armagh Assizes' case, an infamous case of its day, and the manner in which it was being reported on. The three politically like-minded men made a decision there and then to start their own (weekly) newspaper which would present the news in a manner which would not be slanted towards the Westminster point-of-view. 'The Nation' newspaper was born that day.
'The Irish Weekly Independent' - 'There has never been published in this, or any other country, a journal, which was imbued with higher ideals of nationality, which attracted such a brilliant band of writers in prose and verse, which inspired such widespread enthusiasm, or which exercised a greater influence over all classes of its readers, which after a time included every section of the community.
'The Nation' preached a nobler and more self-sacrificing Gospel of Nationality than Irishmen and women had been accustomed to hear for many years. It sought, not only to disinfect the political life of the country, but to raise the whole standard of national self-respect based on the inalienable right of people to guard their own destinies ; to inculcate a sentiment of pride in Ireland and everything Irish - in our history, legends, language and literature ; in our music and in our art ; in our magnificent contributions to the culture and civilisation of other countries ; in our sacred ruins scattered throughout the land and in lonely islands off our coasts, silently preaching silent sermons on Irish sanctity, learning and foreign rapacity ; in our heroic struggle for freedom throughout the ages ; in the brilliant achievements of our soldiers on the continent of Europe and in America, where they helped the oppressed colonists to achieve their independence – and it strove to regenerate the motherland intellectually, spiritually, socially and nationally...' (from here.)
On the 16th September, 1845 - 175 years ago on this date - Thomas Osborne Davis, at only 30 years of age, died in Dublin from scarlet fever. He is buried in Mount Jerome Cemetery, in Dublin.
From 'The United Irishman' newspaper, June, 1955.
Principles, Methods and Subjects...
11. Elements of philosophy.
12. Theoretical and practical elements of art, science and music. Non-formal as well as formal study, with special attention to the creative faculty.
13. Development of manual work and craftmanship. Exclusion of competition and sense of time.
14. Elements of money.
As we have stated, the above is but an indication of some methods and subjects which could be adopted. To develop any such work, it will be necessary to obtain the co-operation of any member, or reader, who can assist in any way. We would therefore be glad to hear from those interested with a view to having a meeting in the near future.
(END of 'Education'. NEXT - 'Ulster Letter', from the same source.)
ON THIS DATE (16TH SEPTEMBER) 100 YEARS AGO : 'OH WHAT A TANGLED WEB WE WEAVE..'
Basil Thomson, to the IRA. It is unknown if the offer was genuine or part of a trap for Michael Collins ; exposed by Irish press as an ex-convict, forger and bigamist, 'Gooding' admits his past and scores a propaganda victory for the IRA; he is allowed to flee Ireland unharmed and dies of natural causes in 1930...'
'John Henry Gooding, alias Frank Digby Hardy was an English naval writer, journalist, soldier, career criminal and would-be spy during the Irish War of Independence. Born in Devonport, Plymouth to a middle-class family, he was educated in London before gaining notoriety in his native Devon as a bigamist and a cheque forger. Imprisoned numerous times throughout his life, he was enlisted by British intelligence to capture Irish Republican Army leader Michael Collins in 1920...his enlistment into the British intelligence services came at a time when membership of the organisation was low and a recruitment drive had been initiated by its leadership for the purposes of action in Ireland during the Irish War of Independence...'
Collins permitted Hardy to make contact with the IIS, and shortly there after arranged what Hardy had been led to believe was a conference with IIS officers. Those present were in fact American and British journalists anticipating the scoop that Hardy was shortly to provide. During this meeting the leaders of the IIS confronted Hardy with his criminal past, and his mission to penetrate the IIS. When Hardy learned the true identity and purpose of his host, he made a full confession, hoping thereby to obtain leniency from his inquisitors. Because of Hardy's cooperation, the IIS spared his life and gave him until the next morning to be out of Ireland. The story made international news headlines, and the BIS suffered a humiliating reversal before world opinion...'
The paragraphs above were taken from various sources as, indeed, was the subject matter - a hired mercenary, spawned, like all mercenaries, from a half-successful coupling between a couple, one of whom - or both - lacked the moral fibre to do it right.
Your manifest perfections never cease
To drive the day-long terrors out of mind
They are the lights the darkness hides behind
Allowing satisfaction its increase
Beyond the petty boundaries designed
To keep us well aware the world's unkind
And still your eyes proclaim a reign of peace... (from here.)
John Henry Gooding, alias Frank Digby Hardy, infected this world from the 5th April, 1868, until the 28th October 1930. He was 52 years of age when he died. From natural causes. He did good to make it that far.
'WHY ARE WE TURNING A BLIND EYE TO PSYCHIATRIC PATIENTS WHO HAVE A PROPENSITY FOR VIOLENCE...?'
By Mairead Carey.
From 'The Magill Annual', 2002.
The West-Dublin area covers a population of over 350,000. As such, it is supposed to have 175 acute beds available to psychiatric patients. It has 50.
The promised 'step-down units' - which were to be built when they closed the acute admission unit at St. Loman's in Palmerstown - never materialised. The general admission unit at St. Loman's services the largest catchment area in the country. In one 22-bed unit in the last six months alone, there have been eight assaults on staff and six on patients, one of them leading to very serious injuries. Five psychiatric nurses have retired prematurely because of injuries suffered at work in the last five years, three more are in the process of retiring and another four are on long-term sick leave.
The nurses at St. Loman's were in industrial dispute in 1993, 1995 and 1997, and have returned to the Labour Relations Commission twice in the past month. The issues are the same as they were in the early 1990's - a shortage of staff and a dangerous shortage of facilities. The incidence of attacks on nurses is growing, and there is no compensation for them when serious attacks take place... (MORE LATER.)
ON THIS DATE (16TH SEPTEMBER) 95 YEARS AGO - BIRTH OF "A VERY SHALLOW PERSON".
"He hid in plain sight. Was it a failure of journalism (not to investigate that fully)? He refused point blank to explain where his wealth came from...his wealth was vastly beyond anything he could accrue from a salary...he represented everything that people were refusing to speak about until then : sex, money and power. There was an oppressive relationship about all of those topics. He had all three of those, and a lifestyle way beyond the meagre existence of the 1960's..something happened. He became crooked and began behaving in an unethical and corrupt way..." (from here.)
However, despite his own taxpayer-funded luxury lifestyle, he had no hesitation in attempting to convince the State taxpayers whom he used to sustain himself that they were 'living beyond their means' - "As a community we are living away beyond our means. I don't mean that everyone in the community is living too well, clearly many are not and have barely enough to get by, but taking us all together we have been living at a rate which is simply not justified by the amount of goods and services we are producing..." (from here.)
'Evidence emerged yesterday that substantial cheques made out to Fianna Fail and sent to party Headquarters in Upper Mount Street, Dublin, ended up in the party leader's account which Mr Charles Haughey ran from his office in Leinster House. It also emerged that Mr Haughey was able to make withdrawals from this account for reasons that had nothing to do with politics. In February 1991, when he was Taoiseach, a cheque for £8,332 was written on the account and used to buy a draft in French francs. The draft was used to pay Chevret, Paris, an expensive shirtmaker used by Mr Haughey. In September of that same year a further £7,500 was used for the same purpose...' (from here.) He liked socialising with poets and painters, although not all of the latter profession got on with him (!) and Irish republicans certainly didn't -
'Taoiseach Charles Haughey speaks out strongly against the H Block activists who attempt to disrupt his election campaign : RTÉ News reports on the Taoiseach Charles Haughey, leader of the Fianna Fáil party, as he campaigns throughout the country (sic) in advance on the 1981 general election. In the border counties of Donegal, Monaghan and Cavan , supporters of the hunger strikers in the H Block prison attempt to disrupt the campaign...the National H-Blocks Committees had announced that they would harass the Taoiseach during all public appearances during the election campaign because, they claimed, he had not done enough to end the hunger strike in the Maze Prison...' (from here.)
'Maintain the Border, Haughey - you're Maggie's little boy ;
You bolster up what Irishmen still suffer to destroy.
Our constitution claims its right, but you in breach bear stain -
You expend the people's millions, the Border to maintain..'
He was the driving force behind the founding of the politically-motivated 'Special Criminal Court' (staffed at that time by personnel from the Free State Army, as opposed to just Free State sympathisers, as it is today) and developed a reputation for organising party nights within the State for what became known as 'the men in mohair suits', a breed of Free State 'politician' which one of Haughey's pals, Martin Mansergh, described as "..not holding much store by political correctness and (who) did not retire early to bed..". Another of his political pals, George Colley, equated Haughey with "low standards in high places".
He had what is known as 'a whiff of sulphur' off him and used that 'wink wink' codology to make a name and a political career for himself, just as other Leinster House reps did before him, and are still doing to this day.
'THE REPUBLICAN POSITION ; STATEMENT ISSUED BY ÓGLAIGH NA H-ÉIREANN AND SINN FÉIN.'
The following statement has been released for publication. Please publish it in full or not at all.
On a number of occasions within recent years, individuals acting on their own behalf or on behalf of some organised group, have made approaches to the Republican Movement. It is assumed that the motives prompting such individuals contain some measure of sincerity and that there is present, in some degree, genuine concern for the welfare of the national interest which the Republican Movement exists to serve.
Invariably, such approaches have had one thing in common ; the purpose was to ascertain how far members of the Republican Movement are prepared to compromise on issues having a fundamental bearing on Ireland's struggle for full freedom, in order to reach some measure of unified effort between republicans and one or other of the political parties in which the individuals concerned have an interest.
To the individuals making the approaches and irrespective of what interests they serve, or what motives prompt their approach, the reasons have been fully explained why the Republican Movement rejects compromise agreements or understandings which, if entered into, could only lead to a facade of unity lacking any element of intrinsic value. Lest those reasons may have been imperfectly understood or that there might be deliberate misrepresentation of the republican attitude, it is considered advisable to reiterate, officially and publicly, the reasons already given...' (MORE LATER.)
Thanks for reading - Sharon and the '1169' team.