This British Army regiment has been responsible for the murder of Irish citizens on the streets of Ballymurphy and the Bogside as well as countless other parts of the occupied Six Counties. While Republicans are arrested by the PSNI, hauled before British Diplock Courts and imprisoned in British Gaols in Ireland, some for “historical offences”, members of the Parachute Regiment and British Army in general remain immune from prosecution. This is part of a concerted campaign by the British Government to prevent truth and justice for the families who have suffered as a result of their various regiments’ activities in Ireland. We fully support these families as they strive to achieve justice for their loved ones. We also welcome families’ condemnation of those who hold the contradictory and hypocritical position of supporting British Royal visits to Ireland while purporting to also support their campaign.
In addition, thousands of British soldiers continue to occupy the Six Counties currently under British Rule as a result of the undemocratic partition of our country. These include countless MI5 personnel who co-operate with and direct the PSNI in their harassment, intimidation and imprisonment of Irish Republican activists — all of which is supported and endorsed by Sinn Féin. In this political context, welcoming the Colonel in Chief of the Parachute regiment, Charles Windsor, or any other member of the British Royal Family to Ireland is grotesque and abhorrent.
Sinn Féin, along with other figures in the media, Churches and the political Establishment, has attempted to portray recent events as “further ensuring the positive relationships between our countries/these islands”. This ignores the political reality that one of these countries currently occupies the other, in a continued denial of national sovereignty and self-determination.
As it stands Sinn Féin have now come full circle. Having been established as a party that supported the rights of the British Monarchy to rule in Ireland, they subsequently developed into a revolutionary party that had the potential to empower people to achieve an Irish Socialist Republic. However, Sinn Féin abandoned the revolutionary tradition some years ago and recent actions have further highlighted the party’s conformity to a populist position, led by individuals who will do anything for electoral advantage. Sinn Féin has thus reverted back to a public position of accepting the British Monarchy’s position in Ireland under political arrangements acceptable to their party, as they take further steps along the well-worn road of compromise, collaboration and failure.
While the Sinn Féin leadership enjoy tea and sandwiches with members of the British Royal Family, we find ourselves incarcerated in “Her Majesty’s Prison Maghaberry”, locked up, beaten and forcibly stripped by screws adorned with “Her Majesty’s Crown” for our Republican beliefs. As such, it is obvious to the Republican Base who exactly is engaged in resistance to British Rule in Ireland, while those in Sinn Féin, professing to hold positions of power, further sacrifice principles and ideals in pursuit of acceptance and respectability in the eyes of the ruling classes.