Today Charles Windsor and his wife were imposed on the people of Finglas and Glasnevin in another choreographed play of normality between the 26-County State and their erstwhile royal family from London. Today’s show follows on from the stage-managed pieces in other parts of Ireland, both occupied and 26-County.
The people of Finglas were effectively annexed off from the city centre this morning, 26-County police were present at every junction and by-road from Finglas that lead past Glasnevin. Residents living in close proximity to the cemetery had to wait within their homes for an escort from the same police. Irrespective of where they wished to travel they were denied passage past the cemetery. They were escorted in the direction of Finglas and then had to make their own way around a police cordon that encompassed the cemetery. At the Glasnevin side a barrier approximately three meters high was erected across the road stopping the passage of anyone or any vehicle
Two small protests were held at either side of the entrance to Glasnevin, on this occasion the police stopped all pedestrians and road users far enough from the entrance that no noise interruption would be heard for those “dignitaries” present. Members of the public attempting to go about their daily business were stopped and questioned as to their destinations etc.
The graveyard itself was patrolled in its entirety by uniformed and plain-clothes police. Similarly police vehicles of every kind were to be seen parked at every junction with Transit vans full of police “at the ready” should there be any trouble. As Charles approached the graveyard, the protesters on the Glasnevin side were assaulted by police and a megaphone taken by plain-clothes police. As this statement goes to print it is unsure if any arrests were made, but in line with other protests the police have been ordered to make no arrests at the protests and just issue summonses afterwards.
Statement by the President of Republican Sinn Féin Des Dalton
Republican Sinn Féin salutes Gabriel Mackle on his courageous defence of his distinct identity and autonomy as an Irish Republican POW within the Maghaberry prison. Irish Republican POWs have historically had to run the gauntlet of British and 26-County state attempts to criminalise them and deny them their identity, shamefully on this occasion this latest injustice comes at the hands of those purporting to be fellow Irish Republicans. To compound the injustice is the fact that it was the CABHAIR supported prisoners who won the right of Republican prisoners to have their separate identity accepted by the prison regime. The CABHAIR supported prisoners led the dirty protests which resulted in the August 2010 Agreement.
This attempt to deny Gabriel Mackle his own political identity and autonomy brings only shame to those who have a hand in it. By cloaking their actions in the name of Republicanism they sully that noble banner. A statement issued under the name of “Republican Prisoners, Roe 4” in Maghaberry prison by the group styling itself Saoradh is quite simply a tissue of lies and calculated smear, designed to hide what is really happening here.
In an attempt to smear Gabriel Mackle the statement cites his previous membership of the British Army’s Royal Irish Regiment. This is a matter of public record. Irish Republican history is littered with instances of Irish patriots who having served in the British Army subsequently gave honourable and heroic service to the cause of Irish freedom, James Connolly, Michael Mallin and Tom Barry are notable examples.
This statement cannot disguise the reality of what is going on in Maghaberry. Gabriel Mackle’s right, a right inherent to all Republican POWs, to maintain his own political identity is being attacked. Historically this right has always been respected by Republican prisoners regardless of organisation. However, this latest move to deny Gabriel Mackle this right echoes the actions of the Provisionals who in 1986 forced Republican prisoners who refused to renounce their Republican principles and abandon their allegiance to the All-Ireland Republic off prison landings.
Today it seems similar tactics are being employed by a grouping that it seems will not tolerate any alternative views. When these people speak of unity we now can see what they really mean. They are simply Provo – lite, aping the tactics and mindset of the Provisionals. They will be no more successful in their attempts to intimidate faithful Irish Republicans than the reformist Provos were before them.
We will not be intimidated or deflected from our work. Over the decades we have seen many such groupings styling themselves as Republican come and go. Republican Sinn Féin and the Republican Movement long predate them and will long outlast them. This year we mark 100 years since the historic 1917 Ard Fheis at which Sinn Féin adopted a Republican constitution. We are proud of our history of unbroken continuity of principle and organisation. Over the course of that century faithful Irish Republicans have defended that constitution from those who have attempted to subvert it, in 1921, 1926, 1946, 1969/70 and 1986. We will remain steadfast in our allegiance to the All-Ireland Republic of Easter and determined in our pursuit of our Republican goals. Once more we salute Gabriel Mackle and pledge him our continued solidarity and support. Maith thú Gabriel.
With many thanks to: Des Dalton, President Republican Sinn Féin.
Comrades, we are gathered here today to pay homage to our brave volunteers and to highlight the plight that they are currently facing as they languish in captivity. It is important to send not only our Solidarity, but also to show our defiance of British rule and continue to progress towards the United Ireland we need.