Archive for the Human Rights Category

Dare Devil Rides To Jarama by Neil Gore 13 February 2017

Posted in Human Rights, International Brigades, International socialism, Internationalism with tags , , , , , on January 9, 2017 by The Plough & The Stars

jarama

National Hunger Strike 35th Anniversary Commemoration – Derry Sunday 21 August 2016

Posted in Alex McGuigan, Commemoration, Human Rights, Hunger Strikes, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 18, 2016 by The Plough & The Stars

11270537_389396551251326_526423801906764525_o

The National Hunger Strike 35th Anniversary Commemoration leaves Rosemount in Derry at 2pm where it will make it’s way with the Red Flag of International Socialism leading the Colour Party to the Irish Republican Socialist Movement memorial in the City Cemetery.  Transport arrangements can be arranged via the IRSP HQ at Costello House, Belfast; the Derry offices of the IRSP or via your local IRSP representative

“Must we live in the shadow of the tyrant in the chains of slavery?  And must we die to shake the shackles from our limbs and taste the fruits of liberty?

Surely it is not to much to ask for freedom and lasting peace in our native land?  And surely it is not too much to be treated as we truly are – soldiers of Ireland and of the Irish People”

(INLA Volunteer Mickey Devine who laid down his life for political status on 20 August 1981)

 

 

300px-inlalogo123

 

Saoirse go deo!

 

 

Alex McGuigan, Belfast

Irish Republican Socialist Movement Easter Rising Centenary Commemoration Dublin

Posted in Commemoration, Human Rights, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 21, 2016 by The Plough & The Stars

rsm easter 2016

The Irish Republican Socialist Movement will hold it’s Centenary Commemoration of the Easter Rising of 1916 in Dublin on Saturday 26 March.  The event will begin outside Liberty Hall at 12.30pm, making it’s way to Glasnevin Cemetery.

The Irish Republican Socialist Movement shares the values and vision of James Connolly, the Irish Citizen Army and honours all those who ignited the spark in 1916 for those who sought to achieve a 32 county Irish Workers Republic.

For further details or transport arrangements contact your local IRSP representative and/or read the IRSP NEWS , the main IRSP Facebook Page or your area’s dedicated IRSP Facebook page.

Saoirse Go Deo!

Support The Health Workers! Protest RVH at 11am, Monday 13/10/14

Posted in Human Rights, Industrial Action, RVH, Strike, Unite with tags , , , , , , , on October 8, 2014 by The Plough & The Stars

Yesterday, 7/10/14. Health Care workers voted to stage a three and a half hour walk-out on Monday 13th October.  The strike is due to Health Minister Poots and Stormont’s constant failure to make any kind of a pay offer to our highly valued Health Care workers.  Health Care workers, despite providing an essential service to the community, are in the disgraceful position of being  among the most low-paid workers in the north of Ireland.   Doubly disgraceful is the fact that many Stormont ministers and politicians spend more money on dining out on a daily basis than many Healthcare Workers receive as their weekly pay or monthly salaries!

Unite, the Trade Union that represents a significant section of Health Care workers, regional lead officer for Health, Kevin Mcadam, has stated that,

“It is regrettable that our members are being forced into taking this action in order to obtain the one per cent pay increase recommended by the independent NHS Pay Review Body.  Our members will always put patient-safety first and therefore proper emergency cover will be provided; however, we will not tolerate employers demanding additional cover for non-emergency work.

“Repeated surveys highlight the fact that staff give an average of eight hours unpaid overtime to the NHS every week. In addition to the strike, our members will be withdrawing this unpaid cover in a work-to-rule which will commence for four weeks from midnight on 13th October to midnight on 9th November.This action will see our members simply arrive at work on time and leave on time, taking standard meal breaks. Members will not exceed their contractual working arrangements. We are asking them to not write notes outside of paid hours as this is work. We realise that as a result of staff cuts the NHS has become dependent on the goodwill of our members but this will now be legally withdrawn.”

 

Join the Protest!  Support the Healthcare Workers!

The protest in support of the Health Care worker’s walk out at the RVH will take place at:

  • The Falls Road Entrance to the RVH

  • It will begin at 11 am on Monday 13th October

  • All support is welcomed!

 

Support the Health Care workers – Don’t let them Fight alone!

Which side are you on?

 

Great International Day of Solidarity and Struggle – Unconditional release for all political prisoners in India – Dublin 25th January 2014

Posted in Human Rights, India, Maoism on January 4, 2014 by The Plough & The Stars

(Statement supplied by international supporters of Marxist/Leninist Maoist political prisoners in India)

 

Great International Day of Solidarity and Struggle for the unconditional release for all political prisoners in India on 25th January 2014, Dublin.

There are over 10.000 Marxist-Leninist-Maoist Prisoners languishing in India’s jails. They have been imprisoned for resisting the imperialist exploitation of India’s natural resources and their efforts to thwart rising fascism. Most have been interned through draconian legislation designed to protect the ruling class from a growing MLM movement sweeping over the Indian nation.

Many of the prisoners are feminists who fought against the huge escalation of rapes which are ordered as a weapon of war by the Indian Government and are carried out by the armed and police forces of India and their paramilitary proxies and conducted under the supervision of the worlds so called super powers. ”In jails the prisoners face every kind of harassment, torture, denial of bails, inhuman living conditions, arbitrary transfers, brutal assaults and punishments of solitary confinement, and often the detained women are raped.”

The level of abuse, terror, degradation and torture they are incurring imprisoned cannot be put in to words. These POWs must be unconditionally released. This is only possible through sufficient international pressure being applied upon the Indian regime. Operation Green Hunt by the Indian Government is backed by many imperialists. It’s aim is to wipe out the Maoist Liberation struggle in India. Assassinations, disfigurement, rape, torture and blanket internment have exceeded any brutality ever witnessed before. These people are impoverished peasants; they must fight 1000 wars a day just to survive and those battles before they can even contemplate engaging the state. The ruling class aided by international lackeys, use the most brutal evil to break them. We cannot let them suffer alone.! It’s aim is to wipe out the Maoist Liberation struggle in India.”

(Further details to be released shortly)

The Irish Political Mural Phenomena

Posted in Community, Human Rights, Hunger Strikes, INLA, Internationalism, Ireland, Irish Republican Socialism, IRSCNA, Loyalism, Murals, Uncategorized, Unionism on September 23, 2013 by The Plough & The Stars

Ireland’s political wall murals are now world famous and they receive thousands of visitors every year. In more recent years some of the most memorable murals have been replaced by less militaristic imagery, due at least in part to British government grant funding conditional on a ‘toning down’ of the murals, in keeping with their present normalisation policy. In the Loyalist areas of the north of Ireland, murals were a feature for many years, even previous to the Troubles. However, they were not on the same scale as they would have been in later years and generally took the form of a simple representation of King William of Orange or similar royalist imagery.

In Republican areas of the North of Ireland, political wall mural painting has mushroomed over this past 35 years and some, such as the renowned Free Derry corner in the Bogside proclaiming that You Are Now Entering Free Derry , have become local landmarks and world famous sites of historical interest. Several books and academic studies of political wall murals in the North of Ireland have been published, perhaps the best known being those by local academic and human rights campaigner, Bill Rolston.

Changes

Up until more recent times, there was a strong military theme to most Irish Republican political murals, with paintings of armed Republicans being extremely common. Memorial type political murals were and still are also popular, with many examples remembering the sacrifice of the ten Hunger Strikers, who gave their lives in the struggle for political status in 1981. Other Republican memorial type political murals commemorate Irish Republicans who lost their lives on active service during the recent conflict.

Irish Republican Murals

The Provisonal IRA’s murals are by far the most numerous in Republican areas of the North, due to their fairly successful attempts at achieving near hegemony within Republican communities, especially in West Belfast.  Murals in support of other groups do exist however and there are several striking murals sponsored by the Irish Republican Socialist Movement (IRSM) which includes the Irish National Liberation Army (INLA), the Irish Republican Socialist Party(IRSP) and the Republican Socialist Youth Movement (RSYM.) Three IRSM prisoners gave their lives in the 1981 Hunger Strike and many IRSM murals commemorate their sacrifice.

The Republican Network for Unity (RNU), 32 County Sovereignty Movement, Eirigi and other Republican groups also have political murals in Belfast and elsewhere.  Other Socialist murals commemorate the volunteers from different religious denominations in Ireland who joined the International Brigades to fight Franco’s Fascism during the Spanish Civil war The Socialist mural in question was placed strategically on an old factory wall on Northumberland Street, a road that runs between the Protestant Shankill and the Catholic Falls Road and it’s poignant message appeals for class solidarity once again. A new mural on the same ‘peaceline’ which divides the Falls and Shankill Roads, painted by the IRSP, on the ‘Republican’ side of the interface is dedicated to Republican Socialist prisoners.

Other anti-Stormont Republican groupings have fairly recently been painting murals in Republican areas, most recently being Eirigi, the 1916 Societies and the Republican Network for Unity’s (RNU) new murals, some of which are painted on the world famous International Wall at Divis Street. To the best of my knowledge the Official Republican Movement (ORM) have only one mural in Belfast. The ORM mural is painted on the gable wall of their Falls Rd office, it commemorates Liam McMillan, a former Official IRA leader. (McMillan was allegedly shot dead by a youthful Gerald Steenson, who later became a leader of the now infamous but defunct, IPLO. Steenson himself was shot dead by the INLA.)

Many Republican murals are non-party based, for instance, commemorating the Hunger Strikes of 1981 or the 1916 Easter Rising. Some murals are heavily laden with images from Celtic mythology and are widely acclaimed because of their intricate design work. The world famous International Wall on the Lower Falls Road/Divis Street celebrates international solidarity with Liberation Struggles in Palestine, Latin America and the Basque Country.

The Mural Tour Industry

Tours of the murals and areas of historical significance in the Irish conflict are often conducted by ex-political prisoners and are extremely good value for money for students of the Irish conflict and so-called “conflict resolution”. Backpack bearing visitors from all corners of the world are a common sight in West Belfast on guided tours around the various murals dotted throughout the district. Community groups in west Belfast also paint murals as an alternative activity for teenagers, to counter grafitti and their work can be seen in many districts often warning of the dangers of street drugs and alcohol abuse.

Loyalist Murals

In Loyalist areas, many of the wall murals are militarist orientated, although there has been a recent trend in displaying less threatening images. During soocer legend George Best’s funeral from his parents home in the staunchly loyalist Cregagh estate, overtly militaristic and extreme right-wing murals were covered up. The ‘clean-up’ followed a quick cash injection from the Democratic Unionist Party-controlled Castlereagh council to tone down militaristic murals in the area, in preparation for the anticipated arrival of Manchester United soccer fans, who had come over from Britain for the funeral of their soccer hero.

Murals of masked paramilitaries from the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF), Ulster Defence Association (UDA) and Red Hand Commando (RHC) are still prevalent in Loyalist areas, some disturbingly depicted scenes of sectarian murders. Loyalist murals are widely seen to be reactionary and of less internationalist appeal, due to their ideological links to fascist and racist groups in Britain and Europe. Some Loyalist murals include scenes from heavy metal band Iron Maiden album covers, which is a fairly good barometer of their political sophistication.  In recent times some of the more bellicose Loyalist murals were toned down in some areas, such as the notorious UDA/UFF mural in Sandy Row.  Yet in other areas brand new murals of masked Loyalist gunmen have appeared.  One of these recent Loyalist gunmen depicted murals bears bizarrely bears a quote from Dr Martin Luther King which sits rather uncomfortably with the supremacist subject matter.

Joint Loyalist/Republican Mural Tours

Loyalist ex-combatants, like their Republican counterparts, conduct tours of their murals and there are now joint tours where tourists can visit murals in both Republican and Loyalist areas and retain the same tour guide or have guides from both communities. During the recent conflict, joint tours where a Republican or Loyalist would take visitors across the ‘peaceline’ to view the other community’s murals would have been impossible due to serious security considerations. Perhaps there is the spark of hope for working class unity, somewhere within ventures such as those..

The North’s political murals are a must-see for tourists to Belfast and Derry. There are various ways to see them and links are included to the various groups and agencies offering political tours, mural tours and generalised tours of places of historical significance within Belfast and Derry’s vast working class ghettoes. There are walking tours conducted by ex-political prisoners which are highly reccomended, they are relatively cheap and great value for money as your guide will be intimately familiar with both the area and the nature of the conflict in the North of Ireland. There are also black taxi tours and mini-bus tours available, usually from the same source.

Open top tour buses leave the city centre regularly and these are popular too with visitors to Belfast. It is also entirely feasible for visitors to conduct their own unassisted tour of Belfast’s political murals and visitors will be completely safe, despite the troubled history. Local people will be only too happy to provide local knowledge and visitors will find that local people are walking encyclopedias on the Irish conflict and local culture. Visitors often call into some of the local parties’ offices in search of directions and places of interest to visit. Many visitors have reported that exploring Belfast and Derry’s murals has been the high point of their trip to Ireland and many have become extremely fond of the rich local culture.

International Brigades Mural, Belfast

Alex Mcguigan

Repatriate Michael Campbell Whiteline Picket Dundalk 29th August

Posted in activism, Human Rights, Irish Republican Socialism, IRSM, IRSP, Michael Campbell on August 28, 2013 by The Plough & The Stars

The IRSP and the Repatriate Michael Campbell Campaign will be holding a white-line picket in Dundalk on Thuursday 29th August at 2pm in Clanbrasil Street, Dundalk.

Please give an hour of your time to help bring him home!

 

%d bloggers like this: