Modern-day revisionism is not exclusive to 26-county political parties
The Irish News 10/01/2019
Jim Gibney’s article (January 2) on the first action in the War of Independence in January 1919 and the revisionism surrounding it, while grounded in error and laced with irony, was particularly topical although absolutely no one familiar with the area would ever associate Soloheadbeg with Clonmel; it would be akin to referencing Bellaghy from Coleraine, Clonoe from Omagh or Camlough from Craigavon.
Stan D O’Brien’s recent publication John Joe’s Story, based on his father John Joe O’Brien’s account of the that period is completely essential reading for those who wish to fully understand the Galtee Battalion of East Limerick and the 3rd Tipperary Brigade’s campaign which relentlessly hounded crown forces throughout South East Limerick, North Cork, all along the Glen of Aherlow and beyond from their Galbally/Ballylanders base.
John Joe and his brother Ned had been central in providing safe billets, transportation, munitions and intelligence in that theatre of operations. Ned, of course, also executed RIC Constable Enright immediately upon him putting a revolver to Vol Séan Hogan’s head during the daring Knocklong ambush which freed Hogan while he was being transported to Cork gaol. Their close comrades Ned Foley and Patrick Moran were subsequently the last two republicans executed by British forces although the latter had played no role in the rescue.
Modern-day revisionism, which has seen the current Dublin administration list British military and local collaborators alongside Ireland’s patriot dead on the insulting Glasnevin ‘Memorial’, now seems to be seeping southwest as attempts are made to ensure that volunteers who fought to free Ireland are to be remembered together with those they killed at Soloheadbeg, as if no ideological difference had ever existed between them.
Such revisionism is of course not exclusive to 26-county political parties.
New Sinn Féin (NSF) have become master craftsmen at the dark art.
Michelle O’Neill, a successor to a job which never existed – Sinn Féin leader in the north – now tells us that the Provisional movement was always “totally committed to the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement” when that was absolutely not what was sold in small “family meetings” to republicans in the late 1990s.
Their acolytes also repeatedly preach that the (dis)agreement is ‘sacrosanct’ while genuine republicans afford only the 1916 Proclamation that singular honour and respect.
Other NSF surrogates have been reduced to writing pleading ‘Letters to Leo’ seemingly ignorant of the central counter revolutionary role that his political ilk have played over the last century beginning with the execution of 77 comrades of the Soloheadbeg men.
Maybe it suits ná scriobhneoirí to remain as much oblivious to that history as it does Jim to ignore the modern ‘traitor’ outburst of his erstwhile comrade Martin McGuinness when accompanied by the ‘Clontiberet invader’ and the head of her majesty’s armed constabulary outside Stormont Castle for which he shortly later felt the need to seek approval from an ‘OFMDFM’ official.
Perhaps Jim, ignoring your own political contortions may well be the purest and most dangerous form of all revisionism.
Former Sinn Féin TD is adamant that his new party will not be a pro-life, single-issue party
It was bitterly cold outside, but inside the ballroom of the Newgrange Hotel in Navan on Monday night, the heat was almost tropical. The crowd squeezed up and more chairs were hauled in, but it was still standing room only when local TD Peadar Tóibín rose to address the gathering of 300-plus who had come to hear him talk about the need for, and his plans to start, a new political party.
“After the couple of weeks I’ve had, this is a sight for sore eyes,” Tóibín began. The crowd rose for a thunderous standing ovation.
Even though this is his heartland, even though rallying around the embattled local boy is something of an Irish political tradition, it was an impressive turnout and an enthusiastic crowd.
“A phenomenal turnout,” the Meath Chronicle reported the following day, with “former Independent councillors, former election candidates across the political divide, members of the clergy, lay people active in the church and medical practitioners” among those in the audience.
Tóibín spoke for about an hour about the need for a new party. It would be a 32-county organisation, he said, dedicated to the twin objectives of Irish unity and economic justice.
He didn’t linger on the unity issue, but spoke at length about economic justice – an umbrella term which included such issues as support for small business, hospital waiting lists, high rents, the cost of mortgages, low incomes and the need for more investment outside Dublin.
Local issues featured prominently, as they do in every political meeting – the need for a Dublin-Navan rail line, Navan hospital, local Garda numbers and the prospect of a chain of pylons being built across the county.
TDs have one eye on winning brownie points from their leader and one eye on minding their seat, with the result they have no eyes left for you
He criticised the political system, condemning the “groupthink” in Leinster House on the abortion legislation, which drew some of the loudest applause of the night. “Respectful opposition is not the enemy,” he said.
The way political parties function, he said, “is one of the threats to democracy”.
Years ago ardfheiseanna were about the grassroots deciding policy, he said. Now they are just “slick political stunts”.
“Parties have become centralised in their control. We are seeing government and politics by focus group, by Twitter and by opinion polls,” he said.
In the Dáil, Tóibín said, “many TDs don’t know what they’re voting on” during the weekly divisions.
TDs, he said, are “unwilling to step outside of the flow and ask the hard questions”.
“TDs have one eye on winning brownie points from their leader and one eye on minding their seat, with the result they have no eyes left for you,” Tóibín said.
He was critical of the system of selecting ministers, who he said were “bought and sold” by civil servants.
About 300 gather to hear Peadar Tóibín pitch new party in Navan
A new political movement in Ireland is long overdue
Peadar Tóibín suspended from Sinn Féin over abortion law vote
“We need to take back some of the powers we’ve lost to the EU,” he said. “London, Berlin or Brussels should not determine our future – we should.”
Again and again, Tóibín stressed the ground-up nature of the new party. It would be, he said, “activist-led, where the membership can tell the leadership what to do”.
Tóibín dwelled only briefly on the reason why he left Sinn Féin – his opposition to abortion – but described the rejection of his amendments to the abortion legislation, which would have required pain relief for foetuses, outlawing abortion on grounds of sex or disability, stronger protection for conscientious objection by medics, among others, as “an injustice that I’ve never seen before in my life”. It drew rapturous applause from the audience.
The questions covered a variety of local and national issues. One man was determined to relate his accounts of Garda mistreatment. The audience would not believe what the gardaí had done, he said. It was worse than the Maurice McCabe case – much, much worse. And he had been complaining long before Maurice McCabe, he added. “The gardaí are here in droves to see who is here,” he warned.
“That’s bullshit,” came a voice from the back of the hall.
The speaker was of a highly determined mien, however, and he later made another contribution before leaving, apparently huffily. A proportion of the audience gave the impression they had heard his story before.
Another man complained about the facilities he claimed were being afforded to “foreigners”. He said he met a foreigner who had “a house provided for him and a car provided for him and money to get dog food for the dog because the dog was foreign.”
Several members of the audience indicated scepticism; Tóibín took it on directly and said that people who came to Ireland seeking protection from persecution and refuge from war deserved and were entitled to help and assistance. The audience approved overwhelmingly.
There were concerns over rezoning, a shortage of school places for children with special needs, criticism of the banks, demands to stop evictions, calls for the nationalisation of Tara mine and a call to follow the British “out the door” of the European Union, from a man who believed that Italy, Poland and the Czech Republic were also about to leave. There appeared to be little support for the idea.
But there was little doubt about what everyone in the room agreed on. When Dr Ruairi Hanley in the audience identified himself as one of the GPs who had “walked out of that meeting in Dublin” – when pro-life GPs left a meeting of the National College of General Practitioners – the room rose in a standing ovation.
Tóibín is adamant that the new party will not be a pro-life, single-issue party. But it is clear that his target market will be among people who voted against the referendum in May.
The success of Peadar Tóibín’s new party will depend on establishing a distinctive offering that does not rely only on the anti-abortion tag.
“Every political party has a raft of policies and a position on abortion,” he told The Irish Times later this week. “We’ll be the same. In no way will we be a one-issue party. But we will be unique in that we will have a counter-establishment position on abortion.”
If Tóibín’s new party is to have any chance of getting off the ground in a meaningful way, it will have to have an appeal beyond its policy on abortion.
It is true of course that more than 700,000 people voted against the legalisation of abortion and true also that a proportion of the 1.4 million who voted Yes favour a more restrictive law than the one currently chuntering through the Oireachtas. That’s a million people, Tóibín told the crowd in Navan.
But that is not the same thing as having a million voters who believe that abortion is the most important issue when they cast their vote in a general election.
This is the key insight that often eludes pro-life campaigners. They say pro-life voters have nobody to vote for. But that is only true if the pro-life voters believe the abortion issue is the most important one. And there is a good deal of evidence to say that only a minority of them do.
Look at it another way: since the X case re-exploded the abortion issue into the political system in 1992, pro-life campaigners have been trying to get pro-life candidates elected to the Dáil. They have stood in multiple constituencies, in multiple guises. They have never managed to get a single TD elected.
And if they couldn’t get one elected in 1992, they’re unlikely to get one elected in 2019.
So the success of Tóibín’s new party will depend on establishing a distinctive offering that does not rely only on the anti-abortion tag. Then he must build a local network – where pro-life organisations will offer a valuable infrastructure – and attract candidates who can win seats. All from a standing start, with no money. It’s a tall order.
He is, he says, talking to 23 elected politicians about joining the new party. Some in the Dáil, some councillors. Some are Independents, some Sinn Féin, some Fianna Fáil. He is coy about names – understandably – but expects announcements soon.
Yesterday the first of these arrived when Cavan councillor Sarah O’Reilly announced she was leaving Fianna Fáil to join the new party.
Writing in his memoir about the early days of the Progressive Democrats (PDs), Des O’Malley recalled being “amazed” at the turnout at public meetings, where thousands of people turned up to public meetings to hear his message of cutting taxes and reducing government spending, and implementing a liberal agenda on social issues.
The PDs flourished, at least for a time, and by changing Fianna Fáil in government, changed Irish politics and Irish society.
The experience of other new parties has been less successful. Renua flopped at the last general election and effectively disappeared from national politics. The Social Democrats went into the election with three seats and came out with three. They now have two. The next election is sink-or-swim time.
In 2011, a mooted new party led by several well-known journalists never got off the ground.
Money is a huge issue for a new party trying to construct a local and national infrastructure. Former PD general secretary Stephen O’Byrnes remembers “constant struggles” over finance in the early days. But even then, the PDs had early momentum – thousands at the public meetings, media interest, high-profile recruits, an impact in the opinion polls.
Tóibín doesn’t have that. Not yet, anyway. “I doubt if what we achieved in 1986 could be done today,” O’Malley has written.
Tóibín’s message is very different from that of the PDs. In some respects, it is almost the opposite. But in another sense, it is just as contrary to the conventional political wisdom as the PDs were in 1986. He has a base that is willing to listen to him. But listening is one thing; voting is another. Winning their votes will require hard work, money, candidates, time, space and luck.
Tóibín hopes that there is a place for a nationalist, left-wing, anti-abortion party. On Monday night, 300 people in Navan seemed to agree. But he knows they have a long, long way to go.
With many thanks to: The Irish Times and Pat Leahy Political Editor for the original story.
In order to build a workable “full spectrum” Irish Republican Civil Service, complete with integrated Irish Republican Intelligence Service, it is important that ‘Communication Networks’ can be secured during the initial development phase.
QCH, better known as Quantum Cryptographic Holography, will without a doubt become the defacto standard in global secure ‘telecommunications’ within the next decade.
QCH has been verified by Cybersecurity expert Joe Shenouda as being a quantum cryptography software/method that can and will deliver 100% secure uncrackable cryptography.
Joe is a cybersecurity professional that advises the Dutch [Nederlands] Intelligence services on cybersecurity issues, he is also one of my connections on LinkedIn, he was the second person I contacted regarding QCH a couple of years ago, the first contact will remain anonymous but the date of contact should be known, December 2012.
Until QCH is fully coded and deployed across the globe we as Irish republicans need to ensure that we can build our strengths in our ‘existing communications networks’ by utilizing everything that is currently available to us.
Developing specialized communications systems such as ‘SecureDrop’ listed below will aid us as Republicans to secure our communications from the intrusive intelligence services as much as we can until QCH becomes a reality.
Some within republicanism have lost sight of how fast the world has evolved, they have also lost insight into who these people are, what they are able to do as a collective, we as a movement need to remove ourselves from the whole FVEY ‘Communications’ Networks, including the ‘Internet 1.0’.
QCH will be revolutionary, it will allow for a new ‘Internet 2.0’, the power that it possesses is groundbreaking, you can visit the GitHub page to help get QCH software coded here:
In the meantime, I will be developing custom Android OS ROMs for TV boxes that allow for custom built secure communications and additional security measures that include pre-installed apps such as ‘Haven’ which has been developed by the guardian project & Edward Snowden, link to the GitHub source Code can be found here if you want to contribute:
where you can get hold of all the secure communications source code and deploy them to your websites, apps on mobile devices etc, or you can wait for one of my custom android Tv ROMs on an Android TV Box complete with all the additional trimming that we are accustomed to.
here below we see the ‘overview of the SecureDrop Whistle Blower Box as used by the Guardian Project and the WikiLeaks Press outlet:
“SecureDrop is an open-source whistleblower submission system that media organizations can use to securely accept documents from and communicate with anonymous sources. It was originally created by the late Aaron Swartz and is currently managed by Freedom of the Press Foundation”.
SecureDrop is a tool for sources to communicate securely with journalists. The SecureDrop application environment consists of three dedicated computers:
Secure Viewing Station: An air-gapped laptop running the
Tails operating system from a USB stick that journalists use to decrypt and view submitted documents.
Application Server: Ubuntu server running two segmented Tor hidden
services. The source connects to the Source Interface, a public-facing Tor hidden service, to send messages and documents to the journalist. The journalist connects to the Journalist Interface, an authenticated Tor hidden service, to download encrypted documents and respond to sources.
Monitor Server: Ubuntu server that monitors the Application Server
with OSSEC and sends email alerts.
In addition to these dedicated computers, the journalist will also use their normal workstation computer:
Journalist Workstation: The every-day laptop that the journalist uses for
their work. The journalist will use this computer to connect to the Application Server to download encrypted documents that they will transfer to the Secure Viewing Station. The Journalist Workstation is also used to respond to sources via the Journalist Interface.
Depending on the news organization’s threat model, it is recommended that journalists always use the Tails operating system on their Journalist Workstation when connecting to the Application Server. Alternatively, this can also be its own dedicated computer.
These computers should all physically be in your organization’s office.
With many thanks to: Micheál Concúic for the original posting and also GRMA mó chára for the tag very much appreciated. God Bless Ireland.
This letter appeared in The Irish News today 21/8/2018
The Irish Daily Mail and The Journal reported on Provisional Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald asserting the idea of Ireland rejoining the Commonwealth of Nations must be discussed.
Can Provisional Sinn Féin not see that joining a free trade association, free trade is a criterion for Commonwealth membership, with 53 other entities would leave the Irish Free State’s market open to economic dumping? Are they unaware that farmers in EU nations are reliant on the common agriculture policy subsidies due to the economic dumping made possible by the EU’s free movement of goods and services?
In any case why would a party with a largely Irish nationalist base want to join a free trade association headed by no other than Elizabeth SaxeCoburg Gotha? Why would a party claiming to be Irish Republican want to join a free trade association of former British Empire colonies?
In the Commonwealth only Britain, India, Canada, Australia, Nigeria and South Africa have a higher nominal gross domestic product than the Irish Free State. The aforementioned nations, along with Pakistan, Malaysia, Bangladesh and Singapore are the only Commonwealth nations with higher gross domestic product purchasing power parity than the Irish Free State.
Only Bermuda has a higher nominal GDP per capita than the Irish Free State in the Commonwealth. The Falklands, Singapore, Bermuda and the Isle of Man are the only Commonwealth entities with a higher GDP purchasing power parity per capita than the Irish Free State.
The idea of the Irish Free State rejoining the Commonwealth of Nations is not the only questionable issue they have raised recently. In the pursuit of legally recognised same-sex unions in this part of Ulster, Provisional Sinn Féin has called upon Westminster to legislate for gay marriage in the six counties. Regardless of where one stands on the social issue there is no excuse for people who claim they’re Republican while calling for Westminster to legislate for any part of Ireland.
With many thanks to: ÉAMONN MACGRIANNA Belfast, BT11.
The economist David McWilliams in December 2017 showed that in the last 60 years incomes in the south have grown by a factor of 20 while here in the north they have grown by 5.
UNIONISTS regularly complain that no one advocating Irish unity ever presents a case for the economic advantages of unity.
Other UNIONISTS say the Irish Republic couldn’t afford the north, couldn’t pay to maintain the standard of living here and even, couldn’t pay the welfare Benifits people here are used to. Most of these objections are based on complete ignorance, some on received prejudices about the south which were out of date a generation ago. All of them are nonsense.
The fact is that there are several presentations demonstrating the economic advantages of Irish unity in one form or another but when they are published they are either ignored or pooh-poohed as, ‘following the Sinn Féin agenda’ or ‘playing into the hands of Sinn Féin’. You’ve heard that refrain ad nauseam. No Unionist have ever seriously examined any of the arguments, probably because, as Peter Robinson reminded them last week, they prefer to stick their heads so far into the sand that only their feet remain visible.
The latest, and so far most valuable economic report, was compiled by Paul Gosling and Pat McArt. Typically, it received little coverage. Derry-based Gosling, a well-regarded economist and no wild-eyed republican, laid out his case at the West Belfast Féile last week to precious little notice.
It comes in two parts. First, a century of partition has impoverished the north and secondly, it will take years of investment and economic restructuring by an all-Ireland government with EU subsidies to raise the standard of living here and rescue the north from the certain basket case that Brexit will guarantee for it thanks to the DUP propping up this demented British government.
First the deleterious effects of partition. It has reversed the North’s position as the most prosperous part of the island. In 1920 the greater Belfast area, with Belfast the biggest city on the island, produced 80 per cent of Irish industrial output. Now the Republic’s economy is four times the size of the North’s and its industrial output is ten times larger. Exports from the Republic are 17 times those from the north. Last year economic growth here was 1.4 per cent compared to 4.9 per cent in the Republic. Average income in 2017 in the south was €39,873 compared to €23,700 here. It’s true higher living costs in the south blunt that difference but that far from wipes out the disparity where a worker in the south is paid half as much again as a northern worker, more if you add in the fall in the value of the pound since June 2016.
The economist David McWilliams in December 2017 showed that in the last 60 years incomes in the south have grown by a factor of 20 while here they have grown by five. Welfare payments in the Republic like the equivalent of Job Seekers Allowance or the new draconian Universal Credit system are more than twice as high as here. Those are just a few figures to illustrate the failure of partition which prevented the north developing its own appropriate economic policies separate from those London dictated.
In the event of unity the north would immediately return to the EU. Gosling argues that the EU will assist in restructuring costs as it did with German unification after 1990. The European Investment Bank would play a key role supplying cheap borrowing to develop an integrated Irish economy. Britain would be responsible for all pension, redundancy and much restructuring costs since the huge public sector in the north has been paying into both state and occupational pensions and indeed the whole population has been paying into state benefits. This arrangement would continue until at least 2050.
Remember, despite leaving the EU Britain will have to pay billions for its own EU civil servents’ and MEP’s pensions for decades. Finally, Britain needs to address the infrastructure investment in roads, water, sewage, health and rail. Gosling is not alone in producing economic proposals which demonstrate that Irish unity will be beneficial to all on the island but particularly to the north which lags at the bottom of European growth charts. He is not alone either in having them ignored by governments and UNIONISTS.
With many thanks to: Brian Feeney and The Irish News for the original story.
Nine men are to stand trial in Belfast next year on terrorist-related offences arising from an M15 secret bugging operation.
All nine defendants appeared at Belfast Crown Court today, where they each denied charges dating back to 2014.
The terrorist charges – including membership of an proscribed organisation and conspiracy to possess firearms – are linked to a series of meetings held at a house in the Ardcarn Park area of Newry, which were recorded on listening devices hidden in the property.
A previous court hearing was told the recordings picked up suspected dissident republicans plotting to target police and members of the judicary over a period between August and November, 2014.
After each of the nine accused entered ‘not guilty’ pleas to all charges levelled against them, Mr Justice Colton was informed by a senior prosecutor that the trial is expected to last up to eight weeks, and a trial date of February 4, 2019 was set.
The Judge then told the nine defendants they were being released on continuing bail. They are:
Patrick Joseph Blair (62) from Lassara Heights in Warrenpoint. He has been charged with, and denies, 15 offences ranging from providing instruction or training in the making of an improvised explosive device to others, and membership of a proscribed organisation namely the IRA, to conspiracy to possessing explosives.
Seamus Morgan (62) from Barcroft Park in Newry, who faces a single charge of IRA membership between August and November, 2014
Colin Patrick Winters (47) from Ardcarn Park in Newry. Amongst the nine charges he faces is providing a property for the purposes of terrorism, received instruction or training in the making or use of explosives for terrorism, and conspiracy to possess explosives.
Joseph Matthew Lynch (77) from Hazel View in Belfast, who has been charged with 12 offences. These include IRA membership, engaging in the preparation of terrorist acts by attending a meeting at Ardcarn Park, and conspiring to possess firearms and ammunition.
Liam Hannaway (48) from White Rise in Dunmurry, who is being tried on 13 offences, including providing instruction or training in the making of an improvised explosive device to others, collecting information likely to be of use to terrorists, and conspiring to possess explosives with intent
John Sheeny (33) from Erskine Street in Newry, who has been charges with six offences. These include receiving training in the making or use of explosives for terrorism, IRA membership, and attending a place used for terrorist training.
Joseph Pearce (48) from Clogharevan Park in Bessbrook, is facing two counts of collecting information likely to be of use to terrorists
Kevin John Paul Heaney (44) of Blackstaff Mews in Belfast, who has been charged with belonging to the IRA between May 2013 and November 2014
Terence Marks (57) from Parkhead Crescent in Newry, who faces two counts, namely IRA membership between August and November 2014, and receiving terrorist training in October 2014.
With many thanks to: The Irish News for the origional story.
Just to let friends know the Junior McDaid House Facebook has been ‘unpublished’ this morning, citing a speech given at a protest outside the Sinn Fein HQ in Derry on Tuesday as the reason.
‘Coincidentally’ at the time of the protest on Tuesday, one of our members tried to ‘go live’ via Facebook but to get a message of ‘Unable to go LIVE’ and ‘you have been blocked from using this feature.’
Fascism is alive and well.