Wednesday, 30 December 2009

2010 - What Lies Ahead?

As 2009 comes to an end i wonder what 2010 will bring?

Firstly let us recall 2009 which was quite an eventful year for the liberation struggle.

I will list a few of the major events that occurred during the year and also some of the activities and events Republicans in Newry were involved in during 2009.


Just 3 months into 2009, Republican Volunteers successfully executed 2 enemy soldiers and wounded 2 other occupying troops at Massereene Barracks. The Volunteers then brazenly walked towards the enemy and continued to fire ensuring that they were successfully executed. 2 collaborators were also injured in the operation.


Days later Republican Insurgents struck again this time successfully executing a member of the British police in Craigavon. 2 local Republicans, JP Wootten and Brendan McConville are currently being held by enemy forces.


Shortly afterwards ,British Micro-Minister, Martin McGuiness stood beside the chief of the British Militia and labelled Irish Republicans as "traitors". Whatever honourable things Martin may have done in the past they went straight out the window with that remark. That's now what he will be remembered for.


In the days following the Massereene operation Lurgan Republican and former éírígí member Colin Duffy was arrested by enemy forces and held in captivity where he still languishes to this day.

Republicans in Newry immediately became involved in the campaign to free Colin having met him and his family in Lurgan shortly before his arrest. Since then we have organised several events to highlight his plight.

Brian Shivers was also arrested and almost died in custody. He has since been released on bail.


Throughout the year there were numerous gun, bomb and rocket attacks on enemy forces as mentioned earlier the Massereene and Craigavon operations, and also attacks such as the rocket launcher attack in Fermanagh, Bomb and gun attacks in Belfast and various other places, the South Armagh Village of Meigh was overtaken by Volunteers armed with AK47s and a rocket launcher as well as similar operations carried out in Fermanagh, bomb attacks in Castlewellan, Forkhill and the attack on the British Policing Board HQ in Belfast City Centre and in recent days the gun attack on an enemy barracks in South Armagh, there are Simply too many to mention.


In the Summer we were saddened to hear of the untimely death of Strabane Republican John Brady. John died in dubious circumstances whilst in custody of the British police (RUC/PSNI) in Strand Road barracks. He was giving full military honours at his funeral with a full gaurd of honour and in a fitting tribute to a true Irish Republican a volley of shots was fired over his tricolour draped coffin.


Also in the Summer the RUC/PSNI showed their true colours again when they opened fire on men, women and children with lethal plastic bullets in Ardoyne injuring many people. During 2009 Ardoyne residents asked Republicans from Newry to come and stand in solidarity with them and protest against sectarian parades being forced through their area, we were only too happy to oblige and will do so again if needs be.

One thing that stood out in 2009 was the increase in harassment, intimidation, threats, assaults, raids and arrests carried out by the British police against Republicans. Thankfully more and more people are realising that the RUC/PSNI has not changed one bit.

Below i will outline the activities that Republicans in Newry were involved in throughout the year beginning with our involvement in Colin Duffy's campaign.

Firstly we organised leaflet drops in Republican areas of Newry this was followed by erecting posters highlighting Colin's campaign, political policing and Internment by Remand. The response we got from residents of these areas was overwhelming, many people would not have been aware of the details of what was happening to Colin if it wasn't for the local Republican activists.

Slogans were also painted demanding the release of Colin (these were removed at the behest of Anti-Republicans).


We helped organise a vigil back in May in the centre of Newry which Colin's family attended. Despite RUC harassment at this the event was a great success with hundreds of leaflets being handed out to motorists and shoppers.


In August Republicans in the Derrybeg estate in Newry unveiled an impressive 24ft long mural demanding Colin's release and an end to Internment by Remand which also affects many other Prisoners. Despite a scathing attack on this project published by former Republicans in an anti-Republican blog, this mural is still there and is seen by hundreds of people every week.


Our next project was to erect a professionally made banner on the busy Camloch Rd, this banner was in place for a few weeks and thousands of people seen it. We then decided to take it down for a number of reasons including bad weather and also so we could bring it to the many pickets and protests that were being organised all over the country.

We attended numerous pickets in support of Colin and his family in various places throughout the year.

Republicans in Newry have formed a special bond with Colin's family and friends and we pledge to continue to highlight the injustices being inflicted upon Colin and his family in 2010.



During the year we also attended several commemorations including the annual Bloody Sunday commemoration in Derry, the annual James Connolly commemoration organised by éírígí in Dublin, and the RNU commemoration in Ardoyne where several hundred Republicans, 2 flute bands and a full colour party marched to commemorate Fallen Volunteers of na Fianna.


In June Republicans from Newry attended éírígí's protest against Armed Forces day. We were forcibly prevented from reaching Belfast City hall by hundreds of riot clad RUC paramilitaries who proceeded to assault the peaceful protesters. Despite this unprovoked assault we remained peaceful and dignified.


Republicans from Newry joined comrades in the 26 counties to help with the No To Lisbon campaign, We travelled to several areas and erected posters, banners and distributed leaflets. We also participated in a protest at the European Commission offices in Belfast where we highlighted the fact that 1.8 Million Irish citizens were denied the basic right to vote simply because they lived in the occupied 6 counties.


We also stood in solidarity with the residents of Ardoyne and protested against sectarian band parades which were forced through the area. We were threatened with arrest by the British Militia for standing on  a public footpath but it didn't deter us or the Ardoyne residents for making their stand in a peaceful and dignified manner.


In December we organised the largest and most successful Republican prisoner picket ever seen in Newry. Roughly 80 Republicans attended including many lifelong Republican activists, former POWs and even hungerstrikers. The RUC/PSNI maintained a constant present for the duration of the picket. British police vehicles were parked at each end of the picket line and they Photographed everyone present.


Also in December éírígí activists based in Newry erected a banner highlighting British Occupation. The ‘adverts’, unveiled by éirígí in Newry and other border areas of the Six Counties, inform shoppers that “You Are In Occupied Ireland – Garrison to 14,000 British troops and paramilitary police”.

éírígí defiantly declared that “We will not allow Britain’s occupation of Irish territory to go unchallenged.”

So what lies ahead in 2010?

Well already Republicans in Newry have several major projects in the pipeline for during the year, and we look forward to 2010 with confidence, so watch this space!!!

One thing i can promise you is that Republicanism in Newry will continue to grow and gain support in 2010 and we will be to the fore in the struggle for Irish liberation.

Monday, 28 December 2009

Successful Irish Rebel Night

As predicted the Irish night was a huge success when over 500 Republicans packed into Bellini's on Sunday night for the annual "Justice" reunion.

It was great to see so many Republicans come together for the function which is now a major event and is one of the highlights of the year in the Republican calendar in Newry.

The group were magnificent and played many ballads and songs throughout the night, they also paid tribute to lifelong Republican and ex prisoner John Fearon who sadly passed away in February 2008. John travelled with "Justice" many times over the years including many trips to Scotland and he is sadly missed by the Republican community in Newry.

Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Welcome To Occupied Ireland

The tens of thousands of shoppers from the Twenty-Six Counties who have been crossing Britain’s border in search of a bargain have been greeted by adverts of a distinctly different nature than normal in recent days.

The ‘adverts’, unveiled by éirígí in Newry and other border areas of the Six Counties, inform shoppers that “You Are In Occupied Ireland – Garrison to 14,000 British troops and paramilitary police”.

The first banner to go up was placed by Newry-based éirígí activists on the bridge of the Belfast-Dublin railway line to be seen by thousands of passing motorists.

éirígí general secretary Breandán Mac Cionnaith said the initiative was aimed at highlighting the ongoing occupation of the Six Counties.

“People in the Twenty-Six Counties have been bombarded with propaganda in recent years proclaiming that the national question has been conclusively dealt with and all grievances in the North have been resolved.

“Nothing could be further from the truth. Britain maintains a garrison of at least 5,000 troops in the Six Counties, at least one of its regiments – the Special Reconnaissance Regiment – is back on a war footing on Irish soil, the PSNI is harassing nationalists, firing plastic bullets and raiding homes on a daily basis and MI5 is running hundreds of agents from its massive base in north Down.

“This is the reality of Britain’s involvement in modern-day Ireland – it is that of a military and political occupation.”

Mac Cionnaith continued: “In the absence of any meaningful coverage of this occupation from the so-called national broadcaster and the corporate media, éirígí will be increasingly highlighting the ongoing repression in the North among the population of the Twenty-Six Counties and encouraging people to do something about it.

“We will not allow Britain’s occupation of Irish territory to go unchallenged.”

Monday, 21 December 2009

Volunteers Eddie Grant and Brendan Quinn

Óglach Edward Grant Killed in Action 24th December, 1973

Charles Edward Grant (better known as Eddie), was born on the 16th August 1956 in Newry. He had six sisters, Margie, Sheila, Josephine, Patsy, Bernie, Maureen and four brothers, Michael, Sean, Martin and Paul.

His father Dominic and the rest of the family experienced personal grief when at the young age of 43, his wife Kitty died suddenly. This put immense pressure on the family as a whole with Eddie's sister Margie stepping into a mother's role.

Eddie lived at Main Avenue, Derrybeg. He attended St. Patrick's Primary School and then went to Newry High School on the Ashgrove Road. On leaving school he went to work at the FMC meat factory on the Warrenpoint Road. This was a stop-gap while waiting to join the Merchant Navy. Prior to the outbreak of the "troubles", Eddie, like many others at that time joined the T.A. Cadets which was based on the Downshire Road and gained some valuable military experience.

Nicknamed "Starchy" by his mates, he was best known in Derrybeg as a raker, always up to devilment. He grew up with a group of friends who also took the same decision to join the ranks of Óglaigh na hÉireann. They went on to become a very effective fighting unit.

He enjoyed all outdoor pursuits, especially camping. He joined St. Catherine's Band playing the cymbals.

Eddie came from an old republican family. His cousin Paul Smith died at Edentubber and his uncle John McEnerney was a Vice-Commandant of the 4th Northern Division IRA. When Eddie first decided to give his services to the cause, he attended a few Republican Clubs meetings with friends, but he soon decided that his loyalty lay with what were known as the "Provisionals". No task was too great; he was always willing to volunteer for active service

On the 24th December 1973, Eddie and his comrade Brendan Quinn were killed in a premature explosion at Clarke's Bar on Monaghan St. Unfortunately a civilian was also to die with the two Volunteers.

The memories he left behind are very precious to his family, friends and comrades.

Ar dheis Láimh go raibh a anam.

Óglach Brendan Quinn Killed in Action 24th December, 1973

Brendan Quinn was born in Daisy Hill Hospital, Newry on 10th June 1955. His parents Tommy and Eileen were from South Armagh and he was the third oldest of five children.

With his brother Tom and sisters Margaret, Ann, Deidre and Teresa, Brendan was part of a tight knit family unit. Proud of its cultural tradition, it was also steeped in republican history. His grandfather James Quinn from Fountain Street, Bessbrook was a member of the Fourth Northern Division, IRA and was arrested following an attack on Camloch RIC Barracks. James's sister, Nan Quinn, was a member of Cumann na mBan. It was she who taught Brendan both history and dancing lessons.

Brendan attended St Joseph's Primary School, Cloughreagh and finished at St Paul's High School. He left school at 15 and worked at J&J Foods, Newry before moving to the meat factory for a short spell. He frequented the old Bosco in Linenhall Square and befriended Sean McKenna Snr, a well-known republican.

Brendan joined the Paul Smith Sinn Fein Cumann, selling "Republican News" every week. He would continue his paper run every Sunday in Carlingford. He joined the ranks of Óglaigh na hÉireann at 17, committed to breaking the link with England. Sincere in his republican beliefs, he proved to be a fearless soldier and a disciplinarian. Three weeks before his death, Brendan had to go on the run. But in true family tradition, he returned with the intention of spending Christmas with them. On Christmas Eve morning he left home in Cloughreagh, never to return alive.

On 24th December 1973, Brendan died along with his comrade Eddie Grant in a premature explosion in Clarke's Bar (now known as the Armagh Down) in Monaghan Street. A customer was also tragically killed. Brendan is buried in the Republican Plot in Carrickcruppen beside a fellow comrade, Raymond McCreesh, who died on hunger-strike less than seven years later.
Ar dheis Láimh go raibh a anam.

Friday, 18 December 2009

Remember the POWs This Christmas

This Christmas when we are spending time with our families and friends please spare a thought for those Republicans who are languishing in a prison cell. It will be an extremely hard time for both the families and the prisoners especially those with wives and young children.

These men have risked their lives for the Republican struggle and are in Gaol for their Republican beliefs and the least we can do is spare a thought for them.

Even a simple gesture like sending them a Christmas card can lift their spirits.

Christmas cards can be sent to the following prisoners

County Laois


*Note-- There are several additional Remand prisoners on E-3 awaiting trial who are not listed below. Please send a group card in care of "REMAND PRISONERS, E-3"

  • Derek Brady 10 Years Dundalk
  • John Brock 6 Years Dublin
  • Sean Connolly Dublin
  • Anthony Crowley 10 Years Cork
  • Bernard Dempsy LIFE Dublin
  • Aidan Hulme 20 Years Co. Louth
  • Robert Hulme 20 Years Co. Louth
  • Vincent Kelly Co. Dublin
  • Justin McCarthy Tipperary
  • James McCormack 22 Years Co. Louth
  • Thomas Morris 6 Years Dublin
  • Fintan Paul O'Farrell 30 Years Co. Louth
  • Declan John Rafferty 30 Years Co. Louth


  • Liam Grogan 22 Years Kildare
  • Darren Mulholland 22 Years Dundalk
  • Denis Dywer Dublin 5 years
  • Eugene Kelly Dundalk
    Paul Kelly Dundalk 4 years
  • Paddy Wall South Armagh 7 1/2 years
    Thomas Kelly Dublin 5 years
    Gerard Kelleher Dublin 4 years
    Neil Myles Cork 4 1/2 years
    John McCrossan Strabane 4 1/2 years
    Jonathan Keogh Dublin 8 years
    David O'Connor Dublin 3 years
    Noel Mooney Dublin 8 years


  • Jackie Bates Wexford
  • Don Bullman Co. Cork
  • Pascal Burke Dublin
  • Ciaran Dunne 5 Years Dublin
  • Ken Donohoe Dublin
  • Tony Hyland 25 Years Dublin
  • Robbie Kearns Wexford
  • Michael McDonald 30 Years Co. Louth
  • Michael McKevitt 20 Years Dundalk


  • Joe Mooney Dublin

Roe House 3+4,
Upper Ballinderry Road
Co. Antrim
North of Ireland
BT 28 2PT

*NOTE - *Note-- There are additional independent prisoners interned on political charges at Maghaberry who would like cards and letters but are not listed here - please email us if you would like more info.

  • Liam Campbell Dundalk
  • Colin Duffy INTERNED BY REMAND Lurgan
  • John Paul Wootten Lurgan
  • John P. Hannan 17 Years Fermanagh
  • Ciaran McLaughlin 18 Years Derry
  • Noel Maguire 20 Years Fermanagh
  • Terry McCafferty INTERNED WITHOUT CHARGE Belfast
  • Gerard McGory
  • Gerard McManus
  • Kevin Nolan

LT 01108

  • Michael Campbell Remand Co. Louth

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Irish Night Featuring "JUSTICE" - Sun 27th December

Local Republican ballad group "JUSTICE" will be playing upstairs in Bellinis on Sunday 27th December. Last year the event was a huge success with several hundred Republicans packing the venue. The organisers are expecting an even bigger crowd this year, so come early to avoid disappointment.

Thursday, 10 December 2009

More Proof of the British Police Being Unaccountable

I remember when the whole policing issue was being debated within former Republican circles a few years ago. A few things that kept being said was that "we would be in charge of them and be holding them to account" and that "manners would be put on them". The bad apples would be gone and it would be a new era for us.

They couldn't have got it more wrong

People also need to realise that out of 180 recommendations by patten, 160 of them were drafted by none other than Sir Ronnie Flanagan!!

A few years have now passed since the irrelevants left Republicanism and pledged their support for the partitionist British Militia and so far they have failed miserably to do anything they said they would do.

  • They aren't holding them to account. They have failed miserably on this part.
  • They haven't put manners on them ( it's actually the other way round).
  • The bad apples remain, in fact the British Police have been recruiting former RUC detectives who came out of early retirement.
  • Collusion with their cronies in Loyalist groups is rife, which was proved during the year

And it certainly isn't a new era for us.

  • Stop and search procedures have increased by over 245%.
  • The RUC were able to bring in British Army special forces without even consulting the policing board.
  • Raids are constantly being carried out.
  • Republicans are constantly being arrested, harassed, assaulted, intimidated, gassed and threatened by the British police.
  • Plastic bullets are still being fired at children

Another thing that was regularly said during the policing debates was that by entering the DPPs, they would have the opportunity to put awkward questions to the British police and challenge them on various issues.

We now all know that was complete crap, it seems that false promises were made in order to sell the deal to the grassroots.

Recent events have proved that they are unaccountable, former republicans are entering these toothless DPP talk shops and asking the British police questions, the British police in turn refuse to answer them because they simply don't have to!

They are not accountable to anyone other than Mi5

Here's an extract from this weeks Newry Democrat which proves my point

"Mr Burns cited several examples where he claimed policing was under question but the chief inspector declined to comment for legal reasons.

“I don’t want to talk about issues under investigation,” said Mr Cordner. "

It was also amusing to hear former Republican Colman Burns say the following

“The conclusion drawn by the people in South Armagh is that the PSNI are working to the same political agenda as the RUC did in the past,” Mr Burns said.

Are they only realising this now?
No doubt the irrelevants will ask me what my alternative is, my alternative to supporting British policing in Ireland is simple.......don't support it.

Given the recent upsurge in draconian policing being used against people like Sean and Annette Hughes, Tony Catney, Mairtin Óg Meehan, Marian Price, Gary Donnelly and numerous others, maybe the time is right for the irrelevants to withdraw their support for British policing in Ireland.

Considering that PSF now view Republicans as their enemy maybe it's too late, maybe they have gone too far to come back to Republicanism?

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Republican Prisoner Picket a Huge Success

On Saturday 5th December one of the biggest Republican prisoner pickets ever held in Newry took place when between 70-80 Irish Republicans stood in solidarity with Republican prisoners and their families.

The large turnout and the calibre of those who stood on the picket line sent a clear message that these Irish Republicans will not be forgotten. In the crowd we had lifelong republican activists, several Ex POWs, former Hunger Strikers and a large number of high profile republicans including Marian Price and Tony Catney. These are the people who have given their all for the Republican cause and who sacrificed so much to strive to achieve the ultimate goal.

It was a great moral booster to have people of such calibre standing alongside us on the picket line and it provided the prisoners and their families with the assurance that Republicans are right behind them.

We were also privileged to have a number of families of the prisoners in attendance including the family of Lurgan Republican Colin Duffy, as most of you know Colin and his family are no stranger to political policing, harassment, intimidation and collusion.

Even though the peaceful picket lasted only an hour, thousands of people would have seen the impressive display of solidarity. Republicans from all backgrounds came together in unity to highlight the plight of the prisoners.

We also highlighted 28 day detention, Internment by Remand, the restoration of political status, extradition and political policing. Indeed several of those who attended the picket have in recent weeks been victims of political policing including Tony Catney and Marion Price.

It was heartening to see that so many Republicans who have spent their lives in struggle are still behind the prisoners and their families.

Organisers of the Picket with Ex-POWs and Colin Duffy's children

The Paramilitary Police maintained a constant presence for the duration of the Picket with British police vehicles placed at both ends of the picket line. They kept everyone under surveillance and photographed everyone present. This won't deter us from highlighting these important issues but will in fact make us more determined.

We want to thank everyone who attended the picket making it a huge success and we urge people to spare a thought this Christmas for the prisoners and their families.

Many thanks also to the staff and management of the Railway Bar in Monaghan St for their kindness, hospitality and light refreshments made available to everyone following the picket.
Organisers of the picket with Ex-POWs

Friday, 4 December 2009

Baggott Suppressing the Truth on Shoot-to-Kill

PSNI chief Matt Baggott has already proven his RUC credentials in his short time in the Six Counties according to éirígí general secretary Breandán Mac Cionnaith.

On Monday [November 30], lawyers acting on behalf of Baggott went to court to request more time to prepare Public Interest Immunity Certificates in order to censor the Stalker and Sampson reports into shoot-to-kill operations by the RUC.

The reports relate to the RUC murders of six people in the north Armagh area between November 11 and December 12 1982.

IRA volunteers Gervaise McKerr, Eugene Toman and Seán Burns were shot dead in Lurgan on November 11; 17-year-old civilian Michael Tighe was shot dead near Craigavon on November 24; and INLA volunteers Séamus Grew and Roddy Carroll were shot dead close to Armagh City on December 12.

Mac Cionnaith said: “By making every effort to prevent the truth coming out about RUC shoot-to-kill cases, Matt Baggott is following in the footsteps of his predecessor Hugh Orde. The fact that the PSNI is working hand-in-glove with MI5 on this issue makes a mockery of claims that the force is in any way accountable to citizens.

“Despite all the talk of community policing, the new PSNI chief is clearly showing that, when it come to protecting the interests of the British state in Ireland, nothing will be allowed to get in the way.”

Mac Cionnaith continued: “Along with firing of plastic bullets, the massive increase in stop & search incidents and the daily harassment of nationalists and republicans, the blocking of the truth behind RUC killings is merely proving that the PSNI has nothing positive to offer communities in the Six Counties.

“In the interests of truth and justice, the Stalker and Sampson reports should be released in full – the reputation of the RUC-PSNI could hardly sink much lower as a result.”

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Republican Prisoner Picket

On Saturday 5th December Irish Republicans in Newry will be holding a white line picket to show solidarity with all Republican prisoners and their families. We will be highlighting various injustices being inflicted upon them such as 28 day detention, Internment by remand, political policing, and we will also be calling for the restoration of political status.

December is traditionally prisoner’s month in the Republican calendar and it will be a particularly hard time of year for the prisoners and their families.

Political policing is also being used all across the 6 counties, many Republicans including former POWs, the families of POWs and indeed high profile Republicans have been victims of this type of harassment.
It has recently been revealed that there were roughly 12,000 stop and search incidents over a 3 month period, and it works out that an average of 110 stop and search incidents are carried out everyday by the RUC/PSNI. This draconian tactic will also be raised at the picket along with the prisoner issues.

The picket will take place on Saturday 5th December in Bridge St, Newry, it will take place from 2pm -3pm.

All Republicans are welcome to attend

Newry/South Down Republicans

Monday, 30 November 2009

More Political Policing, Intimidation, Assaults and Arrests !!!!

I was shocked to hear the news that last night that a comrade of mine had his home attacked in North Belfast. 2 suspected blast bombs were thrown at his house by cowards. The RUC/PSNI have also told him that shots were possibly fired.

The person in question is a tireless Republican activist and community worker. If people think that attacks like this will stop Republicans from helping their communities then they are very badly mistaken.

Another North Belfast Republican, Mairtin Óg Meehan was on his way over to his comrades house to see if he was ok following the bomb/gun attack. He was stopped by enemy forces using section 44 and 21. When he asked why he was being stopped under anti-terrorist legislation and what exactly it entailed he was sprayed in the face with CS gas, handcuffed and dragged from the car. He was told he was being taken to Antrim Road barracks for obstruction.

Mairtin asked for a doctor because of his heart condition and was told he could "fucking wait to see one in the barracks."

The following statement was released by the Republican Network for Unity

Call for the release of North Belfast Chairperson Mairtin Og Meehan

“On Sunday evening at 21:45pm, North Belfast Chairperson of the RNU, Mairtin Og Meehan was travelling to the home of a member of CFAD (Concerned Families Against Drugs) which had recently been attacked, in order to ensure that the family were safe. He was stopped by members of the RUC/PSNI who tried to detain him under Section 44. When he enquired as to why he was being held under ‘anti-terrorist’ legislation, the RUC/PSNI responded by spraying him in the face with CS Gas, and forcibly removing him from the car in which he was travelling. He was then subsequently arrested and taken to Antrim ‘serious crime’ suite.This is yet the latest in a growing number of members of the RNU who have been subjected to overt acts of political policing, harassment, detention and arrest in recent months. The Republican Network for Unity calls for the immediate release of Mairtin Og Meehan.”

Thankfully Mairtin Óg was released this morning but had to receive treatment in hospital. It's very clear that harassment is on the increase, as well as Political Policing. Recently we have seen political policing, intimidation, harassment and assaults all over the Occupied 6 counties.
Another North Belfast community activist was also arrested by the RUC/PSNI last night and is currently still being held.

Republicans wont be intimidated by any thugs whether they wear an RUC/PSNI uniform or not.
These attacks need to be condemned by everyone, selective condemnation is not good enough.

Our comrades in Belfast have the full support of Republicans in Newry.


Monday, 23 November 2009

Normalisation Shattered !!!

At the weekend the British Army "Special Forces" in conjunction with the RUC/PSNI took part in a sinister operation in Fermanagh. The Brits and RUC set up an ambush, the target being Irish Republicans.

Apparently a car containing Republicans was rammed by the British forces who were backed up by the British police (RUC/PSNI). A number of shots were fired at the Republicans and they returned fire at the British. The media gave a different report to that of the residents of the village. Residents reported that there was a fierce gun battle with up to 80 shots being fired. The British controlled media appear to have played this down as they have done so many times over the years.

The British claim that 5 arrests were made shortly after the gun battle. However it's strange that those people where not arrested at the scene nor were there any weapons recovered. Maybe enemy forces just rounded up a few people to make it look like they are on top of things?, a technique they have been using quite a lot recently.

At the time of writing it has just been announced that 3 of those arrested have been released without charge, seems my above theory was correct.

This ambush has obviously had clearance from the highest levels of the British establishment including Mi5, RUC/PSNI and the British army.

On the same night over 100 miles in Belfast there was another incident. This time the target was an apparatus of the British establishment, the HQ of the British Policing board, this board receives regular briefings from Mi5 and works alongside the RUC/PSNI.

The Republicans smashed through a security fence and parked a massive 400Ib car bomb outside the enemy building. Only the detonator went off and no damage was done to the building.

I was particularly saddened to see and hear former comrades standing in Stormont pledging their support for the crown forces and told people to turn informer by passing information on Republicans to the occupying forces. They have now made it clear who they are siding with and they obviously view Irish Republicans as their enemy.

This was a joint British Army/RUC operation and that proves that the enemy cannot be held accountable for their actions. PSF should withdraw their support for enemy forces immediately, it has been proven time and time again that they are failing miserably to hold them to account.

It's inevitable that Republicans will continue to physically oppose the Crown Forces, whether its the RUC or British army. It's a well known fact that as long as the British continue to occupy Ireland they will be met with force. Many people are not supportive of that but that does not mean that it's wrong. Every Irishman and Irishwoman have the god given right to take up arms against occupying forces.

Personally i don't believe actions like those we seen over the weekend will achieve much, those tactics have been tried and tested for decades on a much more severe level and it was a failed tactic. If it didn't free us then, it wont now.

I certainly wont condemn the volunteers responsible for recent attacks. I admire their courage, determination and the fact that they are willing to risk their lives for Irish freedom the same as so many brave men and women have done before them.

One thing that it will achieve though is that it has helped shatter "normalisation". Many people have been gullible enough to fall victim to normalisation. Many seem to forget that there are more British soldiers in Ireland than there are in Iraq. And now we have British soldiers setting up ambushes and trying to kill Republicans.

British soldiers along with the RUC in confrontation with Republican volunteers in the Fermanagh countryside, enemy HQ being targeted in Belfast, 110 people being stopped and searched everyday all over the occupied 6 counties, British army "special forces" being used in covert operations, Republicans being constantly harassed, assaulted, imprisoned, threatened, and intimidated.

Does this sound like a "normal" society?

Saturday, 21 November 2009

What is a "Micro-Group"?

We often hear the term "Micro-Group" being used by the media, Constitutional Nationalists and other Anti - Republican elements to describe Irish Republican groups.

Obviously the term is used to try and belittle Irish Republicans.

What exactly constitutes a "Micro-Group"?
What defines a "Micro-Group"?

Here are 3 of the main reasons our opponents would use,

  • Anti-Republicans say that "Micro - Groups" have no mandate.
  • They say that "Micro - Groups" do not have the support of the majority of the Irish people.
  • They say that "Micro - Groups" have few members.

In regards to the argument that they have no mandate, didn't Gerry Adams himself state that,

"The IRA needs no political mandate, it derives it's mandate from the presence of the British in the 6 counties".

The British presence is still here so in my opinion the same goes for anti-treaty Republicans, they also derive their mandate from the presence of the British.

Now in regards to the argument about not having the support of the majority of the Irish people, Republican groups have NEVER had the support of the majority of the Irish people. The majority of Irish people did not support the Easter rising of 1916, does that mean they were wrong? does that mean they should not have had the rising? In fact when the British were marching the rebels through Dublin, the people threw rotting vegetables at them and spat upon them.

The border campaign from 1956-1962 did not have the support of the majority of the Irish people either, in fact that is one of the reasons why the campaign was called off. Where they wrong to have the campaign ?

The PIRA campaign from 1969 until their surrender in recent years did not have the support of the majority of the Irish people. Were those volunteers wrong too?

The 3rd example is when they say that "micro-groups" have few members, This is a simple one to answer because i just have to quote James Connolly's last statement,

"Believing that the British Government has no right in Ireland, never had any right in Ireland, and never can have any right in Ireland. The presence in any one generation of even a respectable minority of Irishmen ready to die to affirm that truth makes that Government for ever an usurpation, and a crime against human progress"

It's quite obvious that those who try to degrade and slander anti-treaty Republicans are fearful of their potential.

Thursday, 19 November 2009

éirigi Expose Lies by Crown Forces

On Sunday 15th November éirigi took part in a sponsored walk on Divis mountain.

The walk was organised by éirígí activists to raise funds for the party and included a short demonstration at a British military communications post on the mountain, which is on the outskirts of west Belfast

When they were making their descent from the mountain they were met by roughly 30 riot clad paramilitaries of the RUC/PSNI, 2 helicopters, up to 8 Armoured landrovers and several unmarked cars. Bear in mind that this was not an armed rebellion, it was a sponored walk involving women and children.

They stopped and searched everyone present and even searched a child's pram, they also searched passers by who had nothing to do with the sponsored walk!

When éirigi approached the media about the harassment, they in turn contacted the British crown forces. Not surprisingly the RUC/PSNI denied that they had been in the area and they did not stop or searched anyone on Divis Mountain.

When éirigi activists contacted the Andersonstown News and provided dozens of stop and search documents as well as photographic and video evidence the Crown forces were forced to admit that they were lying and that they were in the area.

éirigi have released the following video which exposes the harassment and lies from the RUC/PSNI

This is not normal policing, this is not civic policing. This is the same policing that we have been subjected to for decades. Nothing has changed with this paramilitary force except their uniform and badge.

Some people tell us that it's better now that there are more Catholics in the RUC/PSNI. Lets make one thing clear, it doesn't matter if the cop harassing you is a catholic, protestant, Hindu or Muslim. Religion does not even come into it. They are part of the British establishment and will do anything to protect that.

They are a Colonial British Militia whose main role is to protect the British union and enforce British laws in Ireland. They are a part of the British occupation forces.

They harass, intimidate, threaten, bribe, frame, assault and imprison Irish Republicans and as proved by éirigi they are lying scumbags.

The RUC/PSNI are as much part of the occupation as the British army or Mi5. If you support one you support them all.



Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Political Policing Continues!!!

In the past few weeks there has been an upsurge in the level of Political policing being used against Irish Republicans and in some cases Constitutional Nationalists.

Last week enemy forces carried out arrests and raids in South Armagh in connection to alleged electoral fraud, they also raided properties linked to former Republican Sean Hughes and froze several bank accounts.

These disgraceful actions need to be condemned by everyone.

More recently senior Republican, and former POW, Tony "TC" Catney was arrested at an airport by the Crown Forces after arriving home from Scotland, and today veteran Republican, former POW and hunger striker Marian Price was arrested in West Belfast and a Republican was also arrested in Tyrone.

Since the execution of two enemy soldiers back in March, 14 people have been arrested. Two people have been charged, Brian Shivers, who almost died whilst in custody, and Lurgan Republican Colin Duffy who is no stranger to crown force harassment and collusion.

On Sunday a sponsored walk on Black Mountain in West Belfast ,organised by éirigi to raise funds, was disrupted by enemy forces. When the group ,which included women and children, descended from the hike they were met by up to 8 Armoured landrovers, 2 helicopters, several unmarked cars and 30 riot clad RUC paramilitaries. they searched everyone present under "anti-terrorist" legislation including a child in a pram.

We certainly know who's putting manners on who.

It was also recently revealed that on average 110 people are stopped every day by enemy forces using draconian stop and search procedures.

Is this the new face of policing we were promised?

Judging by these draconian tactics being used against the Republican community it's quite clear that enemy forces view anti-treaty Republicans as a threat to the status quo. Anti-Treaty Republicans are constantly growing in numbers and gaining more support.

No doubt former Republicans will tell people to go to the toothless DPP, and they will hold them to account and put manners on them blah blah blah. They need to wake up and realise that they can't hold them to account. The other Englishman who was chief constable was able to send in British Army "special Forces" without even consulting the very group that is supposed to hold them to account, the DPP.

Will senior members of PSF be demanding Marion's immediate release and describe her as a "sound Republican"?

Will PSF be running to the TV cameras to speak out about the recent injustices being inflicted on Irish Republicans or will they wait until it happens to them?

You would think that after 800 years enemy forces would realise that the more they oppress the more we'll resist!

Monday, 16 November 2009

RUC/PSNI Repression on the Rise

The PSNI’s increasing reliance on the tactics of repression was highlighted yesterday [Sunday] when the force put in place a massive operation to deal with a sponsored walk on Belfast’s Black Mountain.

The walk was organised by éirígí activists to raise funds for the party and included a short demonstration and speech at a British military communications post on the mountain, which is on the outskirts of west Belfast.

However, as the 30 or so éirígí members and supporters were finishing their hike they were met by no less than seven armoured PSNI jeeps, two helicopters, 30 PSNI riot personnel and a number of unmarked cars.

The thugs in uniform proceeded to search, question and film those who were on the walk, as well as many bystanders who were out enjoying the winter sunshine on what is National Trust land.

Along with the adults searched at the scene, the PSNI also felt the need to search a child’s pram. At no stage did the officers involved explain what exactly it was they were looking for.

The scale of the operation caused a stir at the near-by Lámh Dhearg GAA pitch, where spectators had gathered to watch a football game, and resulted in many residents phoning a local newsroom to report the PSNI activity.Amazingly, when contacted by journalists, the PSNI denied they had stopped or searched anyone on the Black Mountain.

The PSNI’s over-kill came only days after it was revealed that there were more than 12,000 stop & search incidents in the Six Counties under the British government’s ‘Terrorism Act’ and ‘Justice & Security Act’ between July and September this year.

éirígí general secretary Breandán Mac Cionnaith said: “The most recent figures on PSNI stop & search operations reveal a dramatic rise. This will be very worrying for the nationalist communities who have traditionally borne the brunt of British state repression.

“The figures on stop & search between July and September are three times the number for the previous quarter – this works out at an average of 110 stop & search operations every day.

“This is the reality of policing in the Six Counties. It is one that is far removed from what was promised by the nationalist parties who took the decision to endorse the PSNI.”

Mac Cionnaith continued: “These figures clearly show that the PSNI is not a civic police service – it is a politically-motivated paramilitary force, funded and armed by the British government for the purpose of protecting the occupation of the Six Counties.

“When it comes to policing nationalist communities, the PSNI’s idea of what is acceptable constitutes harassment on a massive scale, the firing of plastic bullets, raids and the use of CS gas and Tasers.

“However, it will soon become obvious to them that any amount of harassment will not deter éirígí activists from opposing the British occupation.”

Monday, 2 November 2009

Colin Duffy - When Will it End?

For two decades Colin Duffy has been the target of an unrelenting campaign of persecution and victimisation by state forces within the Six Counties. That campaign has encompassed the full spectrum of harassment experienced by nationalists in the Six Counties, from petty stop-and-search harassment to arbitrary arrest and detention, from verbal and physical abuse to collusion and the use of murder.

Republicans in Newry have been to the fore in highlighting Colins case. Since the night Colin was arrested Republicans in Newry have erected posters, distributed leaflets, raised funds, attended pickets, painted murals and erected banners. We are also in regular contact with Colin's family who keep us up to date with his case and we keep them up to date with any future activities we are planning.

When Colin's family and friends came to Newry in May 3 car loads of RUC/PSNI Paramilitaries were there to harrass and intimidate us.
Colin's family issued the following statement about the incident in Newry:

The campaign members were met by a large number of Newry supporters who helped hand out leaflets. The support was overwhelming from the public and even the heavy rain and the RUC harrasment they received failed to dampen their spirits.

The victimisation of Colin's family and friends by the RUC had the opposite effect to that which was intended. From the outset the family had stated that they would not be silenced. This was the case in Newry as friends and supporters of the family rallied around and confronted the RUC in their attempt to disrupt the vigil.

Colin has now been held in captavity since March, below i have outlined a brief history of the British state's campaign of persecution against him which he and his family have endured for almost 20 years.

1990 - A Witness To A State Murder

19 years ago in March 1990, Colin Duffy was making his way home along with Sam Marshall and a third man, Tony McCaughey, when they were confronted by masked gunmen who opened up with automatic fire. The attack took place just moments after the three men had signed bail at Lurgan RUC barracks.

Two masked gunmen stepped out of the Rover and opened fire. Sam Marshall was wounded and unable to run. The gunman put the rifle to Sam's head and fired twice. Miraculously, Tony and Colin escaped unharmed.

A few days later, a sophisticated crown force surveillance camera trained on Colin's house was discovered. The equipment bore Nato and British MoD markings. The Rover had been found burnt out, shortly after the killing near the M1 motorway. Questions were publicly asked about the Maestro but there were no answers immediately forthcoming.

In 1994 during an extradition hearing in America, RUC inspector Alan Clegg, admitted that the red Maestro belonged to the "intelligence services", and on the night Sam Marshall died it was part of an undercover operation involving three unmarked vehicles one of which belonged to the RUC. Clegg refused to divulge any further information to the US court on the grounds of "British national security".

As the Historical Enquiries Team re investigates Sam's murder and the Marshall family pursue their demand for the holding of an open and full inquest, a very pertinent question arises - is it possible that the very forces accused of direct involvement in that murder have conspired again in 2009 to conveniently imprison one of the surviving two key witnesses to Sam's murder, in order to discredit him and any testimony he may give?

1993 - A Conspiracy Between Murder Gangs,
Six County Police And A Paid Perjurer

Three years after surviving the multiple murder bid which claimed Sam Marshall's life, Colin was the centre of another conspiracy by state forces 'to take him out'. This time, the conspiracy involved framing Colin on a murder conviction rather than kill him. A convicted unionist gun runner, Lindsay Robb, revealed that the Six County police force had colluded with the UVF to fabricate evidence against Colin The plot was different but the question remains - were many of the key protagonists the same?

According to Lindsay Robb, the RUC approached senior UVF figures after the IRA killing of a former UDR soldier John Lyness in 1993. The unionist murder gang was asked to supply a 'clean' witness who could claim that Colin was seen in the vicinity at the time of the shooting. The police officers involved implied if the unionist murder gang could do this for them, they would 'go easy' on investigations into UVF activity in the Mid Ulster area - even though the same organisation was actively engaged in a ruthless campaign of murder directed against Catholics at the time.

Lindsay Robb claims he was approached by a senior member of the Mid Ulster UVF and asked to give evidence, for which he was paid, against Colin. Robb subsequently appeared, screened from public view, as a key prosecution witness at Colin's trial.

Colin was convicted in 1996, but in a dramatic turn of events, the conviction was quashed when the UVF's 'clean' witness was caught gun running in Scotland. Lindsay Robb was convicted and Colin was released when details of the extraordinary conspiracy between the RUC and the UVF emerged.

Following his release, Colin publicly said to the media, "if the RUC were prepared to collude with loyalists to take me out of circulation in 1993, then it is reasonable to assume that members of the British crown forces were involved in the UVF's attempt to take me out in 1990. This was not the first or last time the RUC, or some other section of the British crown forces, were in contact with loyalist paramilitaries.

Colin spent a total of three years unjustly imprisoned as a result of this British conspiracy. It was only as a result of a long and hard fought campaign by his friends and family that Colin was finally released in 1996.

His family are determined that this time around he shouldn't have to spend any additional years of imprisonment as a result of yet another British state conspiracy against him.

Colin's brother Paul said, "Colin's history is a history of injustice, conspiracy, collusion and breaches of human rights. These practices were not acceptable in the 1990's, they should not be acceptable today".

Paul went on to call for all those who campaigned for Colin's release in the 1990's to support the family's present campaign.

1997- Another Failed Frame Up

In July 1997 Colin was arrested and again charged, this time with killing two RUC officers. In a blatant example of arbitrary arrest and detention, the RUC deliberately ignored evidence which established Colin's innocence. There were a dozen witnesses who could place him in the Kilwilke estate, more than a mile away, at the time of the shooting.

A concerted campaign was mounted demanding his release, and a number of British MPs, Irish TDs as well as numerous human rights organisations in Ireland, Britain, the US and Europe supported the campaign.

Many correctly raised questions regarding the entire process of victimisation which Colin had been subject to by the state, calling it a clear abuse of process and urging his immediate release.

Colin was held for several months before the charges were dropped.

That injustice only ended when Colin was freed for the second time in thirteen months after a crown lawyer was forced to concede that the only evidence against him was the alleged evidence of a psychologically unstable woman, Witness D, who was pressurised by the RUC into falsely identifying him.

Another woman, who was an alibi witness for the defense, was also pressurised by two detectives while she was on holiday in Scotland, who tried to intimidate her into changing her statement.

Despite twelve witnesses contradicting Witness D, and a member of her own family describing her as unreliable, the RUC had persisted in their case against Colin.

Colin's lawyer, Rosemary Nelson, who was later murdered in an act of state collusion in 1999 said: "This matter has caused the greatest concern in legal circles, amongst international civil rights bodies and public representatives."

Gareth Pierce, an English lawyer who campaigned for wrongly accused Irish prisoners in British jails said: "Every ingredient which has led to wrongful convictions in the past seems to be present in his case."

2009 - When Will It End?

There are very few people in Ireland who would not be aware of the circumstances leading up to and surrounding Colin's arrest on March 14th and his subsequent detention for 13 days before he was charged. Many people will agree with the family's view that Colin has again been the victim of a convenient frame-up by the state.

For the family, this is already a case of history repeating itself again. We are left with no choice but to once more campaign for justice on Colin's behalf.

Many of our neighbours and friends in Lurgan and other surrounding areas have already been in touch to offer their assistance in our efforts to secure his release. Indeed, on the evening following his rearrest after a court had ordered his release, we were heartened by the many people (estimated by the BBC to number almost 250) who filled the North Lurgan community centre for a
public meeting which had been called with less than twenty-four hours notice.

We could be despondent and despairing for the future. We could simply resign ourselves to asking - will this victimisation and persecution ever end? We know that is what those who have mounted this prolonged campaign against Colin would like us to do. But we will not accept this injustice and we most certainly will not remain silent.

Indeed, we shall challenge the wall of silence that challenges this and other injustices.

With the help of our many friends and good neighbours with the support of all those who believe in justice, we will continue with our efforts until Colin is back where be belongs - at home in Lurgan with his wife Martine, his children, and wider family.