Billy McKee: One of the founders of the Provisional Movement in 1970, leader of the 32-day hunger strike in 1972 which started 15 May and ended 19 June in Crumlin, Belfast. Forty prisoners took part. This strike ultimately forced Britain to give special category status for prisoners affiliated to paramilitary organisations in all camps, not just Long Kesh. It was the revocation of this status that led to the 1980 and 1981 strikes.

The home of life long Republican Billy McKee was ransacked last night in Belfast. Billy was held by one of the gang in his bedroom while the others wrecked the house. They gained entry by posing as Water Board officials. . Billy turned 90 years of age last week. How could anyone do this to a republican who has given his life to the cause and spent long year’s in captivity.
unbelievable,but in this day and age all the vulnerable in society are under attack,
welcome to the new age were nothing is sacred and i mean nothing
I’ll not say here what should be done to the thug’s who target the vulnerable and i’ll leave it to your imagination because as sure as the night follow’s day they would have some well paid lawyer screaming about their right’s


Seattle Cops Pepper Spray 84 year old woman, pregnant teen


Occupy Tulsa
Seattle activist Dorli Rainey, 84, reacts after being hit with pepper spray during an Occupy Seattle protest on Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2011 at Westlake Park in Seattle. Protesters gathered in the intersection of 5th Avenue and Pine Street after marching from their camp at Seattle Central Community College in support of Occupy Wall Street. Many refused to move from the intersection after being ordered by police. Police then began spraying pepper spray into the gathered crowd hitting dozens of people. (AP Photo/, Joshua Trujillo) MAGS OUT; NO SALES; SEATTLE TIMES OUT; TV OUT; MANDATORY CREDIT
 From Dave : They need to figure out a way to handle this correctly. All the cops and government is doing is fueling everyone to join the movement. If they poke and prod enough some shits gonna go down. Their pepper spray isn’t going to help them when t…here are hundreds of thousands of people marching threw their cities. There are occupiers that are there for the wrong reasons, but the ones there for the right reasons out weigh the ones there for the wrong.See more



Anti-Fee Demo 16 November 2011


Thousands of students march through the streets of Dublin!

No ifs,
No buts,
No Education Cuts!


Updated about an hour ago · Taken at Áth Cliath


AOH Ireland – Saint Patrick’s Day Festival 2012 Dungannon

Friday, 16 March 2012 at 00:00 – Monday, 19 March 2012 at 00:00

Dungannon, Co Tyrone, Ireland


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Aghaloo AOH Division 202 in liaison with the County Board of Tyrone, Ireland, would like to take this opportunity to happily invite you all to this years Irish AOH, Saint Patricks Day Parade.The parade will be held in Dungannon, Co Tyrone, Ireland. And it is the first time in over 20 years that the parade is to be in Dungannon and so it is a major coup for the town and a great opportunity for the tourism, culture and economy …of the town and its surrounding area.Dungannon has a very rich history and a deep Irish identity and it was once the principle seat of the O’Neills, the Irish Gaelic dynasty who were often thought of as the most powerful Gaelic family, and because Dungannon was the clan’s main stronghold it was by default therefore also the most important settlement in Gaelic Ireland. The O’Neills ruled Tyrone and most of Ulster for hundreds of years until their departure during the Flight of the Earls, and although little of their castle remains their presence is still deeply felt by the people and so it is with great pride that the people of Dungannon and indeed all of Tyrone feel when history confirms them to have been one of the last strongholds of the great Gaelic way of life.

So it is with great honor that we, Aghaloo AOH Division 202 have been given the job of hosting and organizing this years parade in a town that has such a great place in Irish history and so we are determined to do the best we can.

The parade itself will be at 3pm on Saturday the 17th of March 2012, and although this will be the main piece of the event, because Saint Patricks Day this year falls on a Saturday, it was felt that there was a great opportunity to have a weekend of festivities and so we will be working with others in and around Dungannon town itself to help organize other events that will take place all weekend throughout Friday, Saturday and Sunday. We hope that these events will but only help compliment the main parade and so ensure even more that a great weekend is to be had by all.

If you would like to find out more, take part in the parade or if you would like to help and get involved, then please get in contact and we will be glad to speak with you.

Lastly recognizing the great AOH tradition that there is in America, we would like to this time to offer a great hand of welcome to any AOH division or band or any individuals or groups who would like to come to Ireland for Saint Patricks Day. Because we think it would be great if you would come home to Ireland and come home to Dungannon for Saint Patricks Day 2012. We and Ireland would be glad and proud to have you, and deeply honored if you were to attend and take part in our parade.

So to all our American friends, cousins, brothers and sisters, if you would like to come back to the land of your identity, the land of your blood, the land of your ancestors birth, then rest assured that we will extend and immplement a thousands welcomes to each and everyone of you and ensure that you will experience a Saint Patrick’s Day that only Ireland could deliver.

Thank you for taking the time to read and if you have any questions, just ask. Thanks

We will follow this up with more information shortly.

Aghaloo Division 202 See more


Posted on behalf of :  Lá Fhéile Pádraig Dungannon invited you · Share · Public event


25 November at 13:00 – 26 November at 13:00


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ThirtyTwo Csm Cork invited you · Share · Public event

Communist Party of Britain – Members & Supporters

The Leningrad Album, a Token of Scottish-Russian Friendship in War ..Dear Allies : A Story of Women in Monklands and Besieged Leningrad. (Published by Monklands District Libraries. PRICE just £5.30; details are given at the end of this post.)In the Mitchell Library, Glasgow – the largest public reference library in Europe – that our tale starts today; for here is kept the precious and beautiful Leningrad Album, a work of art rather than a mere book, whose story Margaret tells below. This year sees the 70th Anniversary of the horrific events of the Siege of Leningrad in the Second World War, events which are now passing beyond living memory.With his pathological hatred of the Slav people, Hitler despised the Russians; his troops fought them with unparalled viciousness and brutality. Finding Leningrad strongly defended, the Nazi leader coldly calculated that it would be more efficient to starve the city’s population to death than to feed them as prisoners. Historians estimate that by the time the Siege was lifted (28th January, 1944) a million and a half people had died at Leningrad, civilians and armed forces, of hunger, malnutrition, wounds and disease. (This figure far exceeds the combined total of British and American Second World War dead.)

On 22nd June 1941 Adolf Hitler unleashed against the Soviet Union Operation Barbarossa, a military invasion on a scale unknown in the history of human conflict. A mechanised and armoured horde of three and a half million men of the German Wehrmacht with their Axis allies poured across the frontier while planes of the Luftwaffe rained down bombs on the sleeping border towns. More than 1000 Soviet planes were destroyed before they could become airborne, such was the speed and devastating efficiency of the Blitzkrieg, the ‘lightning warfare’ perfected by the Germans.
It was 5.45 a.m., British time – a Sunday morning – when Dr Goebbels, the Nazi Minister for Propaganda, read the Führer’s proclamation : ‘The greatest march the world has ever seen is taking place.’

The German attack on the Soviet Union was three-pronged. Army Group South was to aim for the oilfields and fertile farmlands of the Ukraine. Army Group Centre’s objective was the capture of Moscow. The thirty divisions of Army Group North, supported by 430 aircraft of the First Air Fleet were to over-run the Baltic states and enter Leningrad, the city Hitler called ‘the breeding centre of Bolshevism.’

To the people of Leningrad, their city was the cradle of three workers’ revolutions and the city named after Lenin, where the founder of the Soviet state had announced the birth of the world’s first Socialist society in 1917. Constructed as Tsar Peter the Great’s dream of a capital city, Leningrad had been cherished and embellished for more than two centuries. It was no longer the administrative capital, but it remained the brilliant centre of culture and learning it had been since its foundation in 1703.

“We shall be in St Petersburg in three weeks,” Hitler had announced, deliberately using the old Tsarist name. “The city will be erased from the face of the earth.”

As Army Group North came closer, Leningraders feared for their lovely city as much as they feared for themselves and their children. An even higher percentage of civilians in Leningrad than elsewhere in the Soviet Union volunteered for the Opolcheniye – the People’s Army. Five days after the German invasion of Russia, the city authorities ordered the people of Leningrad to start constructing defences around the city alongside soldiers of the Red Army.

Carrying pickaxes and shovels they left the city in their thousands, women, old men, boys and girls. By the end of July almost a million citizens were helping the Red Army units to prepare for the invader by building hundreds of miles of triple defence lines. As it turned out, the Leningraders had a matter of weeks for the Herculean task of digging by hand a total of almost 16,000 miles of anti-tank ditches, constructing 5,000 firing-points and laying over 400 miles of barbed-wire defences.

By the middle of August, Russian resistance had forced Army Group North to a halt on the edge of Leningrad. The people were now back in the city, working night and day on anti-tank barricades in the streets and setting up firing points in their own homes. Leningraders were determined that their most treasured public buildings would never fall into German hands and laid mines in them, to be detonated if the city should be over-run. In fact, not a single German soldier was ever to enter Leningrad except as a prisoner of war.

In early September Leningrad’s last link with the outside world was severed, when the railhead at Mga fell to the enemy. Almost three million people were trapped. On 9th September German bombs destroyed the Badaev warehouses which contained most of the city’s food supplies. The authorities responded by organising ‘food search groups’. Women, children, the sick and the disabled visited empty flour mills, shaking out grains from discarded flour sacks; in breweries spillages of malt were located below floor-boards and scooped up in containers. At the docks a consignment of 2000 tons of sheepgut was seized upon and made into an evil-smelling meat substitute. Members of a search party who came upon some grain under an enormous empty storage tank pulled neighbouring tanks from their foundations, an operation which yielded 389 tons of grain.
At home, housewives cut buttons from clothes and dissolved them to make soup. Pancakes were made from sawdust mixed with wallpaper paste, leather was boiled and tree-bark was served as stew. Glycerine and carpenter’s glue became ingredients in bizarre new recipes.

As the winter drew near, temperatures dropped, reaching 30 degrees below zero. Women had to fetch water from the frozen River Neva using children’s sledges for the pots they were too weakened by hunger to carry. The central power station was an early target for German bombers, cutting off domestic heating and lighting. Radios worked only intermittently, supplemented by wall newspapers and public address systems. Bus and tram services had ceased.

On the evening of the launch of Operation Barbarossa, Winston Churchill had broadcast an emotional speech on the BBC. His words must have surprised listeners more familiar with the anti-Communist rhetoric he had employed since the Revolution of 1917, when he had talked of ‘strangling the infant Bolshevism in its cradle.’

“I see advancing in hideous onslaught the Nazi war machine. We shall give whatever help we can to Russia and the Russian people. We shall appeal to our friends and allies in every part of the world to take the same course .. .. .. Russia’s danger is our danger and the danger of the United States, just as the cause of any Russian fighting for his hearth and home is the cause of free men in every corner of the globe.”
As far as the British people were concerned, Mr Churchill’s exhortations were hardly necessary. People of all social classes and political persuasions were united in grief for the agony of the Soviet Union and in gratitude for the brave resistance of the people and the Red Army. All over Britain groups were being set up to raise funds. One of the largest was the British Red Cross for Russia Fund, headed by Churchill’s wife, Clementine.
First reports of the appalling hardship suffered by the citizens of Leningrad touched a special chord in our hearts. In Airdrie and Coatbridge, adjacent steel-manufacturing towns close to Glasgow, contributions to funds for Russia were generous. In an area where unemployment had been high since the Depression, many men, after years out of work, had found jobs in factories converted to war production; and many women were in paid employment for the first time in their lives.
In Airdrie, the Russia Today Society was well supported by mothers with young children who could not directly help the war effort by working in local munitions factories. On the committee of the Society was Mrs. Agnes Maxwell who had a ten-year-old son, Alex, and a daughter, Jenny, four years of age. She also looked after an evacuee from Birmingham, a boy about the same age as Alex. In October 1941 the committee met in an endeavour to find some way of expressing their admiration and sympathy for the people of the besieged city of Leningrad.

The late Harry Walker attended the committee meeting on that auspicious evening :
.“The eyes of the world were on Leningrad. We were all aware of the tremendous contribution of women volunteers defending the city, night and day, against the fascist forces.We had a large and enthusiastic women’s section in the Russia Today Society. All the women were deeply affected by what they had been hearing about Leningrad. They were desperately anxious to do something to feel part of the vast struggle that was taking place. The plight of Leningrad was the sole topic of discussion at that meeting. We agreed to act immediately, for we could not know how long the besieged city would hold out, the situation was so grave. We decided that a collection of women’s signatures should be made in both Airdrie and Coatbridge and somehow sent to the women of Leningrad with a message conveying our admiration and feelings of solidarity.”
That night six office bearers of the Russia Today Society composed the message :

“To the heroic women of Leningrad, from the women of Airdrie and Coatbridge:

We wish to express our boundless admiration for the heroic struggle you are waging against the barbaric armies of Nazi Germany, the enemy of all freedom-loving people. Our hearts go out to you in this, your hour of supreme agony and triumph, but we are confident that the resolution and self-sacrifice shown by you will shatter the fascist armies. We solemnly pledge ourselves to do everything possible to rouse the women of Britain in this fight and will leave nothing undone that will ensure the quickest and most effective aid being given to your country. Your fight is our fight and we shall not fail you or be unworthy of your great sacrifice.”

The committee’s next decision was to set up a Housewives’ Organisation in Airdrie and in Coatbridge, composed of women volunteers who would collect signatures and messages of goodwill in both towns. Harry Walker recalled that from the many women who joined the housewives’ organisations there was no difficulty in finding volunteers to call at factories and knock on doors. Some would call at houses in their own neighbourhood, pushing their babies in prams. Others dressed their toddlers in warm coats as soon as the older children had left for school, and headed for the housing schemes. Occasionally a passer-by would press a £1 note into their hands – a considerable sum of money in those days.
There was no time to lose. The news filtering through from Leningrad horrified all who read it. Besides, the days were getting shorter as winter approached, and in the ‘black-outs’ of the war years there was no street lighting; nevertheless, the women visited every factory in both towns, as the Airdrie and Coatbridge Advertiser reported. At the SMT aircraft factory more than 500 women gave their signatures, many describing themseves proudly as ‘industrial war worker’. Everybody was working overtime and so many women wanted to sign that sheets of paper were often left with the foreman and collected the next day to avoid interrupting production.

Not a single person was refusing to give a signature and Harry Walker believed that the name of every woman in Airdrie and Coatbridge would have appeared, had events not set a time limit to the project:
“Hitler was boasting,” he explained “that the swastika instead of the hammer and sickle would fly over Leningrad and Moscow by Christmas.”

There were already more than 6000 signatures, headed by the names of the wives of the Provosts of Airdrie and of Coatbridge. Agnes Maxwell and her helpers met to decide how the lists of signatures could be incorporated with the many messages of love and support for the women of Leningrad that had come in from women’s organisations, youth groups, churches of all denominations and local members of the Communist Party. It was suggested by Margaret Plant, an art teacher from Coatbridge, that a decorated album should be made and the committee asked Miss Plant to be responsible for the illustration and binding.
As Margaret Plant stayed up late night after night putting the finishing touches to the decoration of the album, requests to sign it were still coming in. Agnes Maxwell was obliged to put a notice in the local newspaper announcing the imminent closure of the appeal for signatures. It was becoming clear that the album should be sent off without delay, for Leningrad was having its coldest winter in a hundred years and deaths from starvation had reached 4000 a day.
The housewives’ organisations had already written to the Soviet Embassy in London for advice about the despatch of the album. Madame Agnes Maisky, the wife of the Soviet Ambassador, Ivan Maisky, replied, promising to do all she could to get the album to Leningrad, and suggesting that the women deliver it to her personally at the Embassy. Madame Maisky was a name already well known to the women who were to be presented to her. They knew about her appeals on radio, her visits to factories all over Britain and her friendship with Mrs. Churchill. They had seen photographs of her attending fund-raising galas with her husband.
On the evening it was to leave Coatbridge, the women of the committee gathered to see the finished album. They chose a name, ‘The Airdrie and Coatbridge Album’. A deputation of five of them, led by Mrs. Maxwell, was shortly to catch the night train to London. One of them recalled : “Some of the pages with names of factory workers were smudged with grime from the women’s hands. We got a rubber and did the best we could to clean it up a bit before it left on its long journey.”

On Saturday 13th December 1941 the five women were presented to Madame Maisky and the album was handed over with a bouquet of flowers. Madame Maisky read aloud Burns’ “A Man’s a Man, for a’ That “ and spoke about Russia’s struggle. Tea was then served with what Madame Maisky believed to be Scottish scones, but she was not sure and asked for advice on how to bake the real Scottish girdle scone.
The women returned home to preparations for another ‘austerity’ Christmas. Shortly after they got back a moving letter of thanks was received from Madame Maisky. They were touched and full of hope. The letter gave them reassurance that there was official recognition of their efforts at the highest level and that every effort would be made to get the Scottish album to its destination.
At the beginning of June 1942 – six months after the Airdrie and Coatbridge Album had been delivered to the Embassy – a telegram in a brown envelope arrived at Agnes Maxwell’s home. It was a message from Leningrad, from the Anti-Fascist Committee of Soviet Women.
Half a century later, the excitement surrounding the arrival of that telegram remained one of the most vivid recollections of Harry Walker’s life : “It was like something from another world, a miracle.. It was just unbelievable that the women of Leningrad, struggling with hunger and disease and face-to-face with death, should find the time to respond to our pledge of solidarity and admiration. News of the telegram from Leningrad spread from house to house like wildfire. A meeting of the Russia Today Society was arranged immediately. Agnes arrived with the telegram and it was read aloud, then passed from hand to hand. Some of us wept with joy when we read the message :
‘Your greeting was received by the women of Leningrad with great enthusiasm. It was read at meetings attended by women workers,teachers, scientists and housewives. The text of a message in reply to Scotland was unanimously adopted at these meetings.’
“A message in reply? Perhaps a letter of thanks ? Was it realistic to expect any further news ? The women of Leningrad had received the album; that was what was most important. “

The summer of 1942 passed, the year ended and another year of war began. The promised message had not arrived, but the news from the Leningrad Front was better. On 18th January 1943 a massive assault by the Red Army and civilian defenders of Leningrad had broken through the enemy lines and created a link to the railway, allowing some supplies to reach the city through what came to be known as the ‘Corridor of Death’, under constant shelling and frequent dive-bombing attacks.

On 30th January 1943 a notice appeared in the Airdrie and Coatbridge Advertiser announcing an expected visit by Madame Maisky “to the West of Scotland, some time next week.” The newspaper explained, “ An Album has been received from the women of Leningrad in response to the women of Airdrie and Coatbridge.”
But neither of the two towns was on Madame Maisky’s itinerary. It seems that the Ministry of Information was under the misapprehension that the Scottish album had been sent by women in Glasgow. Only through the speedy intervention of Agnes Maxwell were Airdrie and Coatbridge represented at the ceremony arranged for the presentation of the Leningrad Album – in the Glasgow City Chambers. The five women who had travelled to London with the first album were hastily invited.
Madame Maisky subsequently had lunch with the Lord Provost of Glasgow who told her that the football used in the New Year’s Day ‘Old Firm’ match between Rangers and Celtic was to be auctioned in aid of the Stalingrad Fund. Her other engagements included visits to ‘a Clyde shipyard’, ‘a West of Scotland war factory’ and the Russian Bookshop in Glasgow. Newsprint was scarce in Britain in 1943, but the Glasgow Herald gave good coverage to the presentation of the Leningrad Album, even describing what Madame Maisky was wearing – ‘a black astrakhan coat with matching hat over a heather-coloured woollen suit.’
It was decided that the Leningrad Album would be kept in Glasgow as a token of gratitude to women all over Scotland who were showing such compassion for their Soviet allies. Initially it would be displayed at the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, at the same time as an exhibition on the contribution of Soviet young people to the defence of their homeland. Then it was to pass into the care of the Mitchell Library, where it remains to this day.

But first, at the request of Madame Maisky, the gift from Leningrad was shown to the people of Airdrie and Coatbridge. The last week of February 1943 had been designated as Russia Week and the centrepiece of an exhibition at the Sir John Wilson Town Hall, Airdrie, was the Leningrad Album. Thousands of local people filed past the Album as the Red Flag of the Soviet Union flew overhead.
Harry Walker was there : “Sadness and tears,” he remembered, “mingled with joy and happiness as the pages of the Album were turned, as its beauty was revealed and the feelings of friendship and solidarity it represented were transferred to all who passed by. Many were visibly affected as they examined this unique gift to the people of Airdrie and Coatbridge. Many were heard to remark on the need to speed up the opening of a Second Front to hasten the final defeat of the German Army.”


The successor to Monklands District Council is North Lanarkshire Council, based in Motherwell. Enquiries regarding Margaret Henderson’s book, ‘Dear Allies’ – PRICE: £5.30, should be addressed to:
Mr Andrew Edgar, North Lanarkshire Libraries, Coatbridge Library, 126 Main St., COATBRIDGE. Scotland UK
ML5 3BJ Telephone: (01236) 856442 email:

Posted for and on behalf of :  Henk Gerrits


It has been called west Belfast’s Bloody Sunday. Over 36 hours between 9 and 11 August 1971 – six months before British paratroopers were deployed to Derry with tragic consequences – the Parachute Regiment shot dead 11 civilians in the west Belfast housing estateof Ballymurphy. Those who were fatally wounded included the local priest and a 45-yea…r-old mother.

Now, in the wake of the publication of the Saville report on Bloody Sunday, the relatives of those killed 39 years ago in Belfast have called for an international investigation to determine whether the same soldiers were involved in the “Ballymurphy massacre“.

TBC…See more

Free Festival Tickets – Just for a Like on our FB page!

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20 November · 06:00 – 09:00

The Big Stooshie 


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Its really simple – go to ‘The Big Stooshie, Scotland’s Charity Music Festival’ and “LIKE” the page!

You could win 2 weekend tickets to the event! Normal price is £90 each (Early bird price is £72)

If you want another chance of winning post your email address below to be included in our email list and your name will be entered again!

We will pick a name at random from both our email list and Facebook friends at the end of November.

Attic Bathgate invited you · Share · Public