Saturday, December 20, 2014

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East America Not West Brit

Guest writer Daithi O’Donnabhain on what the Proclamation should mean to the current generation of republicans.
Daithi O’Donnabhain

Much like the GPO steps it was supposedly read from, the word Socialism is entirely absent from the Easter Proclamation text. The ethereal language of Pearse is able to traverse the decades and retain its power because it appeals to something vaguer and thus more inclusive. Not only retain its power, but grow as its ideals are consecrated in blood by those whom take up the Republican torch. It remains our refuge from the distraction of current political whims, or prevailing fashion.

Republicanism’s strength is that it could house both the Socialist agitator Connolly, and the Nationalist separatist Pearse and is surely the best path to building the biggest movement. It is worth examining this subject further, because seemingly the only consensus amongst republican groupings today is that it heralds the necessity for the establishment of a Socialist government in line with the philosophy of Marx.

I do not agree with this exclusive interpretation but I also do not share a hatred for anything Socialist that most free market advocates claim to have. This debate has been hijacked since the Cold War, where it suited both sides to claim the USSR was Marxism in practice: the USSR because it was a cloak of legitimacy over their countrywide gulag, the USA because it discredited Marxism amongst those whom Das Kapital wouldn’t be on the reading list. What transpired in the USSR was a (probably) right wing subversion of Marxism, initiated since Lenin’s time in power. I would agree with Socialists when they say there has never been a truly Marxist country, for similar reasons they were all subverted before becoming a workers’ republic.

But this begs the question: what are the chances of a United Ireland getting a Marxist Utopia instead of a green gulag?

A United Ireland that finds itself outside of world trade would need to run surpluses in every staple item, this is true of most centrally planned economies that don’t sit on seas of oil. As a pariah state, outside interests whose capital we confiscated would seek to destabilise the fledgling country by nurturing potential opposition groups. A United Ireland would be most susceptible to this type of attack, given there will be a fairly large and willing constituency in the North with a history of armed agitation. The need for a centrally planned economy and an insurrectionist element in the North point to ownership of the means of production being withheld from the workers, and a repressive set of laws. In other words, the end result of every country who aims to structure their economy according to Marxist principles.

If this doesn’t sound compelling, then a simple observance of the vast and unbroken lineage of corruptible Irish politicians should indicate, with some probability, what choices those with a concentration of power will make at the critical point of transferring custody of power back to the people.

The Socialist Republic might have been desirable at the time of the Proclamation, when Britain had the biggest Empire in the world and dictated structures of world trade, but it doesn’t now. Rules of trade are internationally agreed, and not dependent on the whims of the British Monarch. Given what will assault the fledgling United Ireland, could the permanency of Republic not be better served within a free trade vehicle? Ireland’s history of ingenuity and independence chimes better with a system that rewards risk taking and innovation the free market model undoubtedly offers.

The goodwill I have afforded Marxist principles is not reciprocated by its adherents, who choose to evaluate (rather, smear) the free market solely in terms of the undoubted suffering that occurs within its structures, leaving certain sections homeless and helpless. To me it’s like evaluating IRA campaigns in terms of Enniskillens, La Mons, Omaghs and claiming their primary pursuit was civilian deaths. There is suffering there but it’s not by design, and the alternatives too carry suffering, and I would claim, of a greater degree.

One of the smears put forward by Socialists is around housing. They would give free housing to the low paid, and the rich-centric system denies them that. True, the current system doesn’t afford them this, but would a Socialist one be able to, particularly in 5, 10, 15 years time? Because if there is no ‘incentive’ around housing, large swathes will fall into disrepair and will reduce the overall price of other houses such that new ones are unlikely to be built. In short, no free housing after a generation, and crucially no mechanism to stimulate its production.

Or they will talk of higher wages for workers, asking what sick bastards would prevent poor people being able to afford to feed their families? (Bankers!) That’s how the argument goes isn’t it? If tomorrow everyone received an extra 5 Euro an hour in their pay, the cost of shopping and goods would go up proportionally the day after, and up for everyone. Restrict the prices allowed to be charged? Companies domiciled in other countries will make sure Irish exporters pay a higher tariff to their Governments. Companies domiciled in Ireland could collapse as profits are not set according to the market they operate.

In these two examples, I am just trying say there is another side to something that is made out to be conspiratorial. Look at the city of Detroit for what happens when (State Level) Governments try to legislate intrusively on these matters, appealing to peoples basest instincts, and showering instant but unsustainable rewards. The smaller the state, the less intrusive it has the potential to become, which in world tending towards blanket surveillance of its citizens, might reasonably supplant the economic concerns of at least some of the Proclamation signatories.

The primary piece of legislation in the new Republic, that all others are measured against for consistency of motive will be this Proclamation. In difficult times, Republicans have needed this to ensure they have not deviated from their path. For example, when apparent Republicans would harangue current groupings as traitors, we need only refer to the Proclamation to see there is nothing conditional on that “fundamental right” they assert, save for “the establishment of a permanent National Government”.

Apparent Republicans would point democratic fig leafs applied under occupation as the moral path forward. The Easter Proclamation signatories sought no permission: “The Irish Republic is entitled to and hereby claims the allegiance of every Irishman and Irishwoman”.

It is these principles to be guided by, not transitory modern notions repeated through unquestioning media outlets by quislings, lest we be led in circles, till we eventually stand in opposition to each other and all that Republicans aspire to.


Peter said...

"To me it’s like evaluating IRA campaigns in terms of Enniskillens, La Mons, Omaghs and claiming their primary pursuit was civilian deaths. There is suffering there but it’s not by design..."

Utter nonsense. You can't detonate large timer or short fuse devices in built up areas and not get civilian casualties. At Enniskillen the "primary pursuit" was to kill the soldiers that usually used the wall as cover but such was the size of the device and its proximity to the civilian worshippers that civilian casualties were also part of the "primary pursuit". It was a clear PIRA tactic and to suggest otherwise is ridiculous. Repeating a lie doesn't make it true. Try injecting a bit of honesty into your revisionism.

Henry JoY said...


"... its ideals are consecrated in blood by those whom take up the Republican torch. It remains our refuge ..."

When you blow out the torch then you just might discover that the shadows the republican torch cast are but a montage of imaginary boogeymen and an illusory utopia.

The refuge you refer to is but chimera. Sure its a comfort to some but an illusion none the less. Those that hide out there, trying to avoid the vicissitudes of life, often pay the price living compacted and smaller existences.

No utopian republic but still utopian republicans; all addicted to an ideology and like all addictions fuelled by unrealistic and ungrounded fears and hopes.

The debate on whether the 'Republic' will be socialist or otherwise is irrelevant insofar as it is premised and/or predicated on attaining geographical integration.
And as Anthony stated in a recent post, none of us who fought for it are ever going to live to see it!

(None the less Dáithí congratulations on your first post, thanks for sharing your thoughts. Hope you and yours have a peaceful and joYful Christmas).

frankie said...

Peter, you were once a man in a uniform with a big gun.... Instead of having a 'pop' at the Provisional's 'own goal's'... Why don't you have a pop the UDR's....?

frankie said...

Henry in straight laymans speak... What is you problem with living in a 'real' republic? I've taken on board and factored in you got screwed by a corrupt leadership...

DaithiD said...

Peter, there are many criticisms you could make of the murderous risk metric in which potential civilian deaths figured minimally, but the facts don't support your conclusion of them being the target. You know the ASU was disbanded afterwards? No medals were given for civilian deaths, unlike the UDR/RUC/UDA. You would be better served examining why you think that way, you will have heard no republican claim differently.
Henry, but why do you need to guarantee the rewards of your effort before you will act? As Pearse said "If our deed has not been sufficient to win freedom then our children will win it by a better deed." Christmas joy to all the JoY's etc.
Ps thanks to all for commenting. Nerves are settled.

Henry JoY said...

Frankie I don't have a problem living in the 26 county republic. There are many things I don't approve of but there are relatively few ways I can influence that. If I had to, I could live in a monarchy too. I like you Frankie would be reluctant to live in such a dysfunctional society as currently exists in the North, but I could if I had no other options. And if I did I'd want to minimise the necessary conditions for re-eruptions of political violence and murder.

I don't know if you've already started to notice how limited in fact the individual is in terms of social and political change. I'm inclined nowadays more to heed Socrates' challenge, 'Let him that would move the world, first move himself.' or as Gandhi paraphrased 'be the change you want in the world'.

The best I can do is learn to accept my perfectly imperfect life in my imperfectly perfect world.

To achieve that, and live life on life's terms rather than futile attempts of 'on my terms only', one often has to fall back on the sentiments as expressed in the 'Serenity Prayer'.

"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference."

Frankie I walked alongside those who predicted in '86 the likely outcome of participation in partitionist assemblies so I never felt quite as shafted as those who followed Adams & Co.
Essentially that was the position I held until I arrived on the Quill. Hanging out here has been a bit like as to how I appraised my experience of group therapy in rehab ... 'it was all a trick with mirrors' ... though one cannot so easily spot their own madness we can see the contradictions, justifications and absurdities more easily in others ... and eventually if we're blessed enough to see all of that we take back our own personal power and affect change in our own lives; perhaps its only then that we truly have enough spare capacity to make any worthwhile contribution to the lives of others.

Though the positions I now hold are often at variance with you and other posters here I wish ye all, and your loved ones peace, joy and good health this Christmas.

AM said...


thanks for this piece and hopefully it is not your last. Regardless of who agrees with it or considers it heresy it is important that your perspective is aired.

frankie said...

Henry I got here and stopped..... Frankie I don't have a problem living in the 26 county republic

I'm talking 32 county, unpartitioned...

See the 26c's is nothing more or less than a bigger version of the o6c.
It isn't a republic (maybe on paper)...

I'll read your post and try again.. But don't tell me what the heads in 1916 fought and died for was a 26 county Ireland (or your comrades)...I thought they and you wanted was a 32 county republic.

Peter said...

Frankie and Daithi

I know exactly what some members of the UDR did, but unlike you I am not going to say that civilians suffered "not by design". If you carry out a risk assessment and it shows that civilians will suffer and then go ahead with that operation and civilians die then they were killed by design. I know you want to look back on the failed PIRA campaign and say "well at least we had higher morals than those pesky loyalists" but you didn't, civilians were targeted and you all know it. Enniskillen was only an own goal because the soldiers decided not to congregate there that year. If 8 soldiers had've been stiffed along with all those garden centre prods the ASU would have went home for tea and medals. Why can't you be honest about what happened?

larry hughes said...


I expect from your viewpoint ant logic the Miami Show-band killings were as much an accident as those killed at Enniskillen?

DaithiD said...

Peter, the actual article is not about any of those incidents, but I'll assume you aren't trolling and point out you and me were talking about "primary targets" , your claim was they were. I honestly didn't think this point was contentious: it really damaged the republicans movement. In plain English ( or would you prefer Gaelic?) : please state your evidence that the Enniskillen was intended to kill civilians in the first instance. If we narrow this down we might be able to get somewhere towards common understanding.
Bless you for commenting though, ooh an bless AM for all the drafts , corrections , (and emails at 4 am !)before this got on site.

Henry JoY said...


you ask why do I need to guarantee the rewards of my efforts before I will act?

The short answers is that is what intelligent folk do. They begin with the end in mind. They think things through.

Longer answer; think of a child who gets burnt at the range (fire) or the steam iron or any comparable experience.

For the child/adult EXPERIENCING is the normal entry point into the cycle of learning.

The person reflects on the experience (REFLECTING). Oh fcuk! I didn't like that!

The person then forms some conclusions. (CONCLUDING) I don't like getting burned. Its painful to get burned.

The person then makes some plans for new or future actions and more 'experiencing' based on those conclusions (PLANNING). In future I'll avoid burny things!

That's the simplest version of David Kolb's cycle of experiential learning. For a schematic and more see here

Irish Republicans keep shorting the circuit, jumping on to the next experience without adequate reflection on previous campaigns or drawing relevant conclusions about the consequences and effectiveness of their past actions before planning and moving on to the next phrase.

Its not a very intelligent strategy is it?

AM said...


you are welcome. It was a pleasure to engage.

Peter has been making comments here for a while and you are right to assume he is not a troll. He has serious concerns with the republican narrative and is assertive in his critique. The discussions benefit from his input.

DaithiD said...

AM, I generally find Peters view fascinating,and whilst he is not a troll generally, for some reason he won't explain his view, rather, he regurgitated my own comment back to me. We know civilians may have died, the critical point is if they were the primary target. I hope he explains.
Henry, be a humble Catholic. Of course your deed wouldn't be good enough for such a reward, but prepare the way for those who are better.Be the question mark, not the full stop.

Peter said...

I am not trolling. The minute I am asked to stop commenting on this siteI will. I came to this site to read a transcript of AM's speech a year or so ago and was amazed to finally find a republican who was honest about the Troubles. It seems there are quite a few here.
I know your article wasn't about this but I do take umbrage to republicans claiming that the PIRA didn't target civilians when clearly they did and feel it must be challenged. Now that I no longer have the hatred I used to feel and with the benefit of age and hindsight I can say that loyalists targeted civilians and that it was evil. Why can't you say the same? My evidence for Enniskillen is the proximity of the device to the civilians, the fact that PIRA tried to suggest the army set it off when it was on a timer and that a similar device was discovered at a nearby cenotaph. But I don't want to get hung up on Enniskillen, similar stories emerge from other bombings as well as dodgy warnings etc Can you not see that no-one outside the republican movement believes you didn't target civilians and can you not see the hurt it causes to the families of those killed and maimed?

AM said...


I think there were many occasions when civilians were the primary target, particularly during 1975/76. How else do we explain actions like Kingsmill?

I have never bought into the notion that the IRA campaign was in general sectarian but it did include a lot of purely sectarian operations where people were targeted for no reason other than that of their religion.

Enniskillen was an attack on the people assembled there not the military.

larry hughes said...

Heard recently for the 1st time the device at Enniskillen had a command wire. I had always thought radio interference from security base masts had set it off. Cannot for the life of me think a clear view could be had from a distance of something going on in a built up area. Who planned Bean?

DaithiD said...

Kingsmills was undoubtly civilian focussed, necessarily so because of the Reavey and O'Dowd incidents.But it's something I can't empathise with, you would need to of been in Armagh at the time to understand it properly.

The weird and many denials of PIRA after Enniskillen support my view it was unplanned, the ASU was disbanded too which points to a catastrophic breakdown of command structures.According to Peters (apparent) logic, every bomb planted was targeting civilian life primarily, it's simply not true. In cold military terms, they served no purpose, and strengthened the occupation.

AM said...


the IRA if I remember claimed it was interference with signals that caused the bomb to go off. But about 5 years later it admitted it was a command wire. I think David McKittrick broke the story.

AM said...


I don't believe the leadership directed it to be the way it was. I think it took place on the ground. Whoever was on the wire is primarily responsible. But the leadership were prepared to risk civilian lives. You cannot but risk them if you decide on that type of operation.

As for Kingsmill, every war crime ever committed will find somebody to defend it on the grounds of military necessity.

DaithiD said...

I have never read about the command wire. I know on the sister bomb (that scouts found) there was one but even as recently as the Endgame in Ireland documentary (~2001) the were talking of a timer device set for ten mins before 11. Is the David McKittrick book called Fighting For Peace ( I own it but haven't got round to reading yet and am not at home) . I will concede the point if a command wire was used.

Henry JoY said...

To suggest there was radical evil in the operatives on either side is generally off the mark. Those who were close to the action and can contextually place engagements in time and place will confirm that many of the operations now considered inherently evil were simply a function of thoughtlessness, a tendency of uneducated people to be unaware of or to ignore critical evaluation of the consequences, both short term and long term, of their actions.

AM said...


going from memory alone that's what I think happened. I believe McKittrick wrote the piece (same author) some years after it when the IRA admitted that its first statement about electronic interference had been wrong. If it was a clock rather than a line that puts a slightly different hue on it.

Must go back and read up on it. I am at the stage where I am like the dog at the bottom of the stairs, not sure if I am going up or have just come down!

Henry JoY said...

The Remembrance Day massacre in Enniskillen is an example of both thoughtlessness and incompetent critical evaluation of consequences of actions by republicans.

Accounts that I have heard confirms that it was not remotely detonated but rather on a timer. The reckless intention was to kill members of the crown forces participating in the ceremonies so no warning was given nor intended.

The operation from its inception was ruthless insofar as it denied the inevitability of civilian casualties and deaths. This is all the more poignant considering conversations I have heard since alleging that volunteers, more than ten years earlier, had reconnoitred that same event with the intent of waging an attack on crown forces though on that occasion shelved their plans because of potential civilian casualties.

Republicans need to hear Peter's comments, get real in their evaluations of the conduct of their campaign and stop glossing over the banality of their evil.

DaithiD said...

But Henry, no banal evil has been glossed over, the contentious point is who was the prime target. I worked around Canary Wharf for a time, it's an absolute skill to detonate huge truck bombs without casualties numbering 1000's in areas like that. Two people did die, clearly these were not the target though.
Just as an aside, you don't hear many people in Manchester moan about their bomb, it destroyed a rancid old quarter, replaced with something gleaming and new at zero cost to them.

Peter said...

I apologise for deflecting the debate away from the one you wanted. I try to be a fly in the ointment rather than a troll. As for engaging in gaelic, unfortunately my level is rather low, after I finish my MA I intend to step it up, then maybe one day I can slag you off in the tongue of our forefathers!

A merry Xmas to all you you Quillers.

Tain Bo said...


The refuge you refer to is but chimera. Sure its a comfort to some but an illusion none the less. Those that hide out there, trying to avoid the vicissitudes of life, often pay the price living compacted and smaller existences.

Thus Spakes Henry-Thrustra, opinion is dead it is buried underneath republicanism. It is merely a dream, a trick of the mind, a folly of fantasy wherein Utopianism is the goal, but only in your mind.

It appears you are going to great lengths to avoid variability is it possible to avoid the unexpected changes that life throws our way?

You like fitting round pegs into square boxes the problem with that is the empty space between, that is filled with nothing more than your own fantasy the one where you create distraction by tossing in some big words creating the illusion that you understand variability in the past tense of the soothsayer.

The form of republicanism you once believed in has changed or died off in your mind are you a victim of vicissitude one of the neo dreamers or is that just reserved for those you find fault with.

Republicanism is like any other- ism subject to change it branches off but we can always trace it back to its root value.
Surely you are having a laugh, most physical military actions are ruthless why refer to them so politely as the Crown Forces and not the crown peacekeepers the word forces implies force not so passive.

Can you claim that they denied the possibility of civilian casualties, are you accurate in saying the bombers didn’t figure that into the equation? It would be reasonable to suggest that they did but severely under-estimated the carnage seeing only the possibility of hitting their intended targets through the goggles of tunnel vision and if any innocent people were murdered excuse it away as collateral damage.

You assert that only republicans are evil that is bunk, yes there was evil within its ranks but you neglect the other evils that give rise to the Provos. You are in denial of State evil is there any other explanation for Bloody Sunday or the Murph or were your Crown Forces less evil than the bombers?

You are not doing Peter any favour he holds his own and in my book his thoughts are understandable and consistent with his views you suggest we are idiots and can’t read or understand his position.

Henry JoY said...

"We know civilians may have died, the critical point is if they were the primary target." DaithiD 8:45 PM, December 21, 2014


I borrowed the phrase 'banality of evil' from Hannah Ardendt's reporting of her observations of Adolf Eichmann's trial in Israel in 1961 for The New Yorker.

In that article she makes subtle distinction as to the qualities of evil acts; she coined the phrase "the banality of evil" to describe the phenomenon of Eichmann. She raised the question of whether evil is radical or simply a function of thoughtlessness, a tendency of ordinary people to obey orders and conform to mass opinion without a critical evaluation of the consequences of their actions and inaction.

It seems to me these are useful distinctions to make when conducting a discourse as to the morality of the campaign in total or to its individual and constituent actions. Such considerations also have merit when reflecting on differences in evaluations between yourself and Peter; direct targeting of civilians being radically evil and careless or reckless actions leading to non-combatants casualties falling under the 'banally evil' category.

Republicans are happy to make differentiations between their own actions and those of their adversaries. However in their blanket justification of their own campaign they are reluctant to make such nuanced distinctions. Your own use of language, "We know civilians may have died", bares this out ... the conditional and ambiguous 'may have' used to soften, cushion and belie the hard reality of the factual narrative and avoid banally evil implications.

Peter's tendencies on the other hand, and as you have drawn attention to, are to lump all republican actions under the 'radically evil' category.

Peter said...

Henry Joy
I did no such 'lumping'. Read my posts again. Most PIRA actions were against what they perceived as 'legitimate targets', but large bombs in built up areas are a different matter. You cannot detonate a large bomb in the Shankill on a Saturday afternoon or Enniskillen on Rembrance Sunday without civilians being killed or maimed. Now I believe that for the PIRA to carry on with these type of operations in the full knowledge of the impending civilian casualties was pure evil. I believe the Army Council were happy to see civilian casualties because if the weren't then why did they persist in planting large devices in built up areas?
Republican discourse (like Daithi's) is full of the presupposition that republicans, unlike loyalists, did not target civilians, but that is a lie. To detonate a large bomb in a built up area knowing it will kill civilians is the same as targetting civilians, is it not?

AM said...


the issue is distilled down to whether the IRA believed civilians would be killed and then decided to go ahead anyway. That would leave a very negligible difference between targeting civilians and what the IRA did if it just ignored the consequences.

The IRA demonstrated that it was quite prepared to wipe out civilians as the bombing of the Bayardo and Kingsmill demonstrate.

However, in other cases they calculated the risks and felt they could achieve the goal with a minimum of civilian targets. It did not always work out that way. And in terms of the Enniskillen bomb (more so than the Shankill one I think although maybe not that much more) regardless of the intent the very operation was callously indifferent to the fate of civilians. It was also born of a sectarian mindset in that I doubt the bomb would have been planted at a ceremony attended by large numbers of nationalist civilians even if the chance of killing security personnel was good.

DaithiD said...

Henry,you do make a valid point, but if I read it correctly it supports my view not Peters, yet you purport otherwise? (Sorry I am better with numbers than words)
Anyhow, the distinction between republicans and the state forces actions , so Ennisklillens vs Bloody Sunday's , is two fold . First , the state were following a counter insurgency methodology, codified by Kitson (although The Dirty War book says there were others) that specifically provided for civilian atrocities to break the peoples resolve. Exactly the same thing happened in Iraq, so you can't claim it was a determined by expediency as the war escalated.
Secondly , according to the State, republican militants were just civilian gangsters, as such they were entitled to trials before their peers, and their innocence assumed until proven otherwise.
So even leaving aside which side of peace wall you sit, there is distinction to be made.
Ps Henry, have you ever watched the Families At War documentary,about Shane Paul O'Doherty? Your points resonate a lot with what he says in it.

Henry JoY said...

Correction taken Peter. Apologies.
It would have been more accurate to state that it appears to me that Dáithí perceives it that way.

Anthony, the callous indifference would suggest a radical evilness with its roots in sectarianism. There was also a banal evilness that had its genesis in pure stupidity and thoughtlessness; an inability to think things through. As Larry says, operations planned and carried out by the Mr Beans!

Not all volunteers were the smartest of chaps. The actions of volunteers and command of Fermanagh around the time of Enniskillen bares this out. Isn't it just a tad convenient for the organisation to write-off these actions as those of a rogue unit?

Its questionable as to what sort of ethical risk analysis procedures could allow a bomb on a burning fuse to be carried into a commercial premises at traditional peak time shopping. And to place a bomb in a building thirty feet from the cenotaph war memorial whilst even the most cursory observations would have told that the military were parading on the public highway (with the Boys Brigade and the Girl Guides) and the viewing public standing on the public pathways, the majority sheltering from November winds in the lee of the building in which the bomb was to be placed!

Peter said...

Yes very succint AM. You have said in 8 lines what I couldn't in 8 posts !LOL

pat murphy said...

It may sound very callous but you can't make an omlet without breaking eggs. War is terrible and those involved know this. Some use this fact to their percieved advantage. The day of two opposing armies going into a field and squaring up to other is long gone. Now we have war between nations not armies. You have to hate your enemy and everyone who supports your enemy. Even though you probably don't know them from Adam.. The inevitable outcome will be innocent civilians will suffer. This perpepuates the hate. How mankind has progressed from their time in the caves.

larry hughes said...


define collateral damage.

Henry JoY said...


Radical Irish Republicanism, like radical socialism, is a spent force. As the kids might say, its all so last century. Its over. I could be wrong, I sometimes am, but in my opinion its not coming back.

The proclamation had some merit as an aspirational and motivational declaration in breaking the colonial lnik but the republican dream of 1916 turned into a nightmare. The whole thing descended into an evil sectarian squabble for supremacy.

As I see it this debate is about the nature of the evil perpetrated upon each other rather than about a noble struggle. That is all I intend my comments to reflect. Many people will disagree with my opinions; I can live with that. It is not my intention to impose my views even if I sometimes come across strongly.

Comparisons to the rights and wrongs of various participants (what-about-ery) no longer serves any purpose as far as I am concerned save to draw a sigh of relief that we got beyond the carnage and murder,the pain and suffering. I don't want to see the peace overturned. I am prepared to make concessions towards that end. The concept of victory through surrender is alien to most radicals yet such concepts are embraced and implemented on a daily basis in most functioning and civilised societies.

Shane Paul saw the inherent evil and futility of the struggle long before most. The last I heard of him he was considering becoming a priest. Whatever rocks his boat, I say.

grouch said...

Nice one daithi. According to hj radical irish republicanism is a spent force. The sad truth is the irish are a spent force. This country needs a good civil war but I'm afraid the sound heads would be wiped out as there's too many wankers. I propose building a Great Wall of ulster and move the west Brit population of the south north and move the taigs of the north south. It worked in China and the tourism that would come from it would keep a small country going. The taigs of the north will not be happy initially but will grow to love it. The west Brits of the south can all die in Afghanistan for all I cAre. As regards the Marxism, the Marxist-lennonists I speak for understand something the Marxists haven't copped onto yet - we are all living in a Marxist superstate as envisioned by the great fraud and double speaker himself, namely Karl.

Tain Bo said...

Merry Christmas to all and to all best wishes for the New Year.

Simon said...

Nollaig shona daoibh!! All the best for the New Year!

As for Republicanism being a spent force history shows it rises and falls every so often. The Irish are intelligent enough to govern themselves whether that means reclamation from the British or the West British. They may be too comfortable to raise a fuss these days but hopefully we can as an island make our own decisions collectively. Not by being as right wing or conservative as the British parliament or the current Southern government but through a new, United Ireland with the accompanying benefits.

Economies of scale, a genuine welfare system, a progressive political system and the best aspects taken from the current Irish and UK systems. Who can refuse an NHS style system or a genuine neutral foreign policy for example?

However I draw the line at the Commonwealth. The Queen as head of state? To paraphrase Monty Python "I didn't vote for her." Or anybody else in the UK government for that matter.

Robert said...


I appreciate that the focus of your piece was on socialism but this comment caught my eye.

'You know the ASU was disbanded afterwards?'

On a point of accuracy, if my memory serves me correctly, the unit was not disbanded for Enniskillen per se. The public announcement of disbandment did not occur until 1989 and only after the killing of Gillian Johnstone but particularly Harry Keys. I often wondered if 'disbanded' equated to expulsion. I am somewhat certain that the issue was a public relations rather than an ethical dilemma. I doubt very much had those involved turned up at the gates of the Maze that they would have been turned away or ostracised by their peers.

DaithiD said...

Thanks Robert, from all the comments I've learned a great deal. I was initially perplexed as to why people focussed on certain (ancillary) issues, but that might be the control freak in me.

I would hope your dating of the disbandment is closer to the truth than mine, Volunteers shouldn't have been thrown to the wolves by those with a protected status.The premise of the that point still holds.
It's also worth recalling that fountain of truth T.Blair conceded the IRA were distinct from those failed July 21 London bombers because of their (imperfect at times) civilian considerations.

ps Grouch, you might recognise the scenery in the pic? (Sky Rd,An Clochán) Make sure that's in the Saordonia land grab,it's hauntingly beautiful.

grouch said...

Sadly Connemara is not a hot bed of Marxist-lennonism and it has the worst land in Ireland so I Wundt be interested in grabbing it. I would however consider grabbing about 300 acres of it for a virtual land lord project I'm working on . I'm not a vindictive person as I hope u mite have noticed and I try to forgive as I need forgiveness myself but I'm willing to make an exception for one shower of cu#ts who I really can't handle. And it's not the bastards underground in mi5 heaven up there in Belfast or is it any sas gang or anyone like that . It's the pseudo irish bastards who have taken it on themselves to rewrite history and sanitise the evil inflicted on their ancestors . These pathetic spineless gimps like Harris Myers Harris Dudley Edwards etc etc etc Roy foster all those elitist bone idle shits will be put to work on my estate from anything from one year to life. At the end of their sentence during which they will live like an Irish peasant from the 18 century under a tyrannical landlord (me), they will be asked to write, are you ready, ........... A history of their experience under me. Now here's the dilemma they will face.... Do they tell the truth or do they write what they think I want them to. Coz their freedom depends on my reaction to their history . They will also experience their families being thrown on ships and sent to the Caribbean to work as slaves . And when I head to London for the winter months to spend the money I've earned from their labour on coke and whores like the old landlords they will have to deal with my bailiff who is a complete scumbag. Anyway, that's my plan for connemarA and those pathetic ponces who wouldn't last one week of my tyranny.

DaithiD said...

Grouch, some stylistic tips that might help keep the natives from hanging you on butchers hook, you are being too honest to be a long lasting tyrant:

"put to work on my estate from anything from one year to life. "

Is softer as:

"Zero unemployment guaranteed"


"...during which they will live like an Irish peasant from the 18 century"

Should be :

"Low carbon footprint eco-living with an emphasis on locally sourced produce"


" they will be asked to write, are you ready, ........... A history of their experience under me.....their freedom depends on my reaction to their history"

Should be:

"Creative writing will be encouraged, and in the best instances rewarded"


"They will also experience their families being thrown on ships and sent to the Caribbean to work as slave"

Should be :

"Opportunities for travel and work abroad"

You get the idea.

Henry JoY said...


similar manipulations as used in the Proclamation, strong on style and low on substance, eloquent rhetoric proposing implausible outcomes; all spin and no substance ... blah!

Sovereign and indefeasible my arse.

DaithiD said...

Henry, as I related in the main article, it's this generality that allows it's to be timeless. If they had insisted on specifics, for example the establishment of a welfare state, the Proclamation would appear dated and irrelevant. And what is off the page too, the sacrifices made to promote it's ideals has to figure in any evaluation of it's substance, I see it as inseparable.

Ps I'm surprised the resident 'master of obfuscation and abstraction' is calling out the signatories on a lack of specificity. Doesn't void your point though.

Pps you know I like your writing style really haha.

grouch said...

daithi, we are like the ronseal ad, we do exactly what it says on the tin, no doublespeak in saordonia, henry joy - was that you talking about yourself there - "strong on style and low on substance, eloquent rhetoric proposing implausible outcomes; all spin and no substance ."

"the constitution is Indian Law and thats why i love it" russell means, defender of the republic of Lakota.

beir bua comrade daithi d and remember, its a jungle of sleeveens and gombeens out there, not to mention the croney mafiosi. the brits are only half the problem. its the vichy bastards u have to be careful of. they are the dregs of ireland and dangerous bastards who will sell the country and then fuck off.

Henry JoY said...


The Proclamation has a timeless quality because of its non-specificity. Nominalisations allow the 'every-man' in each of us to hang our hats on such hooks. And when skilfully used can induce hypnotic effect.

Its important not to let ourselves be seduced by language! Better to look behind the words for motive and weed out where necessary any fixated ideas, biases and distortions.

DaithiD said...

Henry, I would love to have been a fly on the wall when ,way back when, one of your kids made the error of mentioning Santa Claus, and you cleared up this myth in your own unique way.