Archive for July, 2016

New Badges For My Collection – Much Appreciated!

Posted in Irish Republican Socialism, Uncategorized with tags , , , , on July 30, 2016 by The Plough & The Stars

A fellow Republican Socialist badge collector, Australia’s James Connolly, very kindly sent me some new badges for my collection.  They are very much appreciated, comrade!

badge 02

The Dominic, Mary and Declan McGlinchey IRSP Cumann

badge 01

The James Connolly Association, Australia. Featuring the Plough and The Stars set on a red star with the crossed flags of the Irish National Flag and the Australian Aboriginal Flag

(The Aboriginal flag was designed by Harold Thomas, a Luritja man of Central Australia, and was first flown on National Aboriginal Day in Adelaide in 1971)

badge 03

The James Connolly Association Australia Easter Rising Centenary badge

Many thanks Comrade!

 

Alex McGuigan

 

INLA Hunger Striker Kevin Lynch Commemoration Dungiven 31 July 2016

Posted in Kevin Lynch, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on July 24, 2016 by The Plough & The Stars

The INLA Hunger Striker Kevin Lynch Commemoration 2016

All available members, supporters, and families to assemble at 1.30pm, Main Street, Dungiven – Sunday 31 July 2016.  March leaves at 2pm.  Prominent speaker.

Please contact IRSP HQ at Costello House, 392b Falls Road, Belfast for those seeking transport or further details.  Telephone: 02890321024 or contact your local IRSP office or IRSP representative

Kevin Lynch INLA Hunger Strike Martyr

kevin-lynch

The year 2016 is the 35th anniversary of the H-Block Hunger Strikes in Long Kesh concentration camp, when 10 brave INLA and IRA prisoners gave their lives for the right to be treated as the political prisoners they most surely were. Irish National Liberation Army Volunteer Kevin Lynch was one of three Republican Socialist prisoners, along with Volunteers Patsy O’Hara and Mickey Devine, who selflessly gave their lives in the tragic Hunger Strikes of 1981. The H-Block protests saw a mass mobilisation in Ireland and overseas in support of the Hunger Strikers. The H-Block Hunger Strikers’ Five demands were:

  1. The right not to wear a prison uniform;
  2. The right not to do prison work;
  3. The right of free association with other prisoners, and to organise educational and recreational pursuits;
  4. The right to one visit, one letter and one parcel per week;
  5. Full restoration of remission lost through the protest

Background

Kevin Lynch was born on the 25th of May, 1956 and came from the Dungiven area of North Derry. Prior to his involvement in the Irish National Liberation Army, Kevin Lynch was a keen sportsman excelling in boxing, Gaelic football and hurling. In December 1977, after spending a year on remand in Belfast’s Crumlin Road prison, he was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment in the H-Blocks of Long Kesh by a Diplock non-jury court, convicted of armed INLA operations in the North Derry area. On arrival at the H-Blocks Kevin Lynch joined the ‘blanket protest’ for a period of three and a half years until he took his place of the Hunger Strike. Kevin was known for his courage and fortitude during the blanket protest, once enduring weeks of agony with a dental abscess rather than don the prison garb to seek medical treatment.

Hunger Strike 1981

Kevin Lynch joined the Hunger Strike on the 23rd of May, 1981 and took the place of his INLA comrade Patsy O’Hara who had given his life 2 days previously. Kevin was a H-Block/Armagh prisoner candidate for County Waterford in the Leinster House elections and although he was not elected like his fellow prisoner candidates, Paddy Agnew and Kieran Doherty, he received 3337 first preference votes! Kevin Lynch’s courage throughout his time on Hunger Strike is well documented and we, who were either very young or not even born in those desperate times can only imagine the pain and suffering endured by Kevin, his brave comrades and indeed his family. Kevin sadly passed away at 12.50 am on the 1st of August 1981 with his two brothers at his prison hospital bedside after 71 days on Hunger Strike. He was only 25 years old..

According to his last wishes, Volunteer Kevin Lynch was buried in Dungiven on the 3rd of August 1981. Kevin died as he lived, a proud Republican Socialist and a volunteer in the Irish National Liberation Army. His last fight was against the criminalisation of Irish political prisoners, by the forces of British imperialism in the H-Blocks of Long Kesh concentration camp. Kevin Lynch was given a full military funeral by his comrades in the Irish Republican Socialist Movement with 6 armed INLA volunteers in uniform firing a final volley of shots over his coffin as it made it’s journey to Dungiven cemetery. Thirty five years onwards, INLA volunteer Kevin Lynch is forever remembered by his old comrades in the Irish Republican Socialist Movement, his family, his community and indeed by the Irish working class. Kevin Lynch’s name is immortalised in his native Dungiven with sporting tournaments, teams and indeed a Republican band named in his honour. On the anniversary of his death each year Kevin Lynch is remembered by his own community and the wider Republican community with a parade in his honour. A large monument in Dungiven bears his name and bears testimony to his courage.

In the year 2016, the 35th anniversary of Volunteer Kevin Lynch’s death on hunger strike, young and old alike will be commemorating his bravery and utter selflessness. Like his fellow H-Block Hunger Strikers Kevin Lynch was amongst ‘the bravest of the brave!’

Saoirse Go Deo!

300px-inlalogo123

Alex McGuigan

 

The 12th July: Folk Festival or Supremacist Rallies

Posted in Loyalism, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on July 3, 2016 by The Plough & The Stars

british-nationalism-in-ireland-racism-and-sectarianism-as-the-orange-order-celebrates-the-kkk

Despite attempts by the Loyal Orders, Unionist politicians and indeed the local BBC and ITV Television channels to normalize the sectarian Orange festival whose apex is the 12 July, under any scrutiny this is no quaint folk festival.  Perhaps I should I have used the term ‘Volkfest’ as more apt term.  Any casual glance at the dynamic of the Loyal Orders, scores it highly as a Supremacist, Gnostic, sectarian and ultra-right wing body to similar organisations globally, for example, the Afrikaner Broederbond, the Ku Klux Klan or the Flemish Vlaams Belang.

 

A Traditional Benevolent Movement?

Certainly it is ‘traditional’ in that it has a certain longevity in that at numerous historical violent crises, the Loyal Orders have been either the cause of or heavily involved in serious disorder.  In fact their actions could arguably have been cited as an important cause of the recent 40+ conflict in the north of Ireland. Furthermore, at significant times of heightened civil tension, such as the various Drumcree crises, the Loyal Orders were given carte blanche by the British security services to act as a right wing militia erecting barricades, manning checkpoints, intimidating the public and were directly responsible for the conflict that saw the murders by burning to death of the 3 Quinn children in Carnany Estate, Ballymoney and the murder of the newly Graduated Michael McGoldrick.  The list is long including the burning down of numerous Catholic Churches.

So yes, it is a ‘traditional’ movement, in the same way that the lynching of Black people in the Southern states of the USA were ‘traditional’.  At best , their ‘traditionalism’ is anti-modernistic and reactionary.  If, as the Loyal Orders would have one believe, that illogically the 12th July was an inclusive ‘festival of culture’ then they would have extreme difficulties explaining the mass exodus by a a significant section of the population of the north east of Ireland, to parts of the world as far away as possible from their ‘traditional’ parading as they can get?  Not to mention the ’11th night’ which is the north east of Ireland’s annual version of Kristallnacht.  If anyone has the dubious need to experience it, there are plenty of places where this can be done but it would be a seriously dangerous form of Gonzo journalism.

 

The Loyal Orders’ Modus Operandi

For many Catholics living in majority Loyalist areas or those living in interface areas, especially where the Loyal Orders insist against the majority of residents’ views of marching through their areas, the 12th July and other Loyal Orders’ parades, life is a living hell.  For instance, without delving too deeply into ‘whataboutery’ no Irish Republican organisation has ever sought to march through Protestant/Loyalist areas yet the Loyal Orders see it as some kind of divine right to trample through Republican areas like Ardoyne.  On the few occasions so far, when they have been prevented from marching through Ardoyne on their ‘return journey’, the Loyal Orders have caused serious violence costing thousands of Poundsorange psni.

The Loyal Order’s primary function is to stop any easing of the sectarian divide between working class people and to permanently divide the Proletariat.  One need not look too far to see the beneficiaries of these divisions, they can usually be seen on election days, as they leave polling stations and counts to invariably return to their petit-bourgeois areas, far removed from the areas they glean their votes.

Re-published below in a nutshell is the sad tragedy of sectarianism in the northern six counties pursued by the deferential Tories of the Loyal Orders :

“Let not the poor man hate the rich,
Nor rich on poor look down,
But each join each true Protestant
For God and for the Crown.”

(Traditional deferential Orange song – stressing anti-working class unity)

 

Alex McGuigan

%d bloggers like this: