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Sharon Rafferty and Christine Connor POW’s

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Not Brittle at all nor barred from the call

They serve in the legions of duty

And suffer the same for patriot games

as all ‘woke by a terrible beauty

Is it for their frames or their notable fame

That England abuses them so?

That screams of defiance

Roar out non-compliance

and Under Hydebankwoods doors

Torment flows?

Do they wince when they hear,

or cower in fear

the demand to obey Loyalist hate

or do they proudly repel

the oncoming hell

by the visions of life beyond gates

Mairead Farrell stood here

in horror and fear

Another hell hole and a now distant time

but her words are the same and in Hydebank remain

They will never get inside your mind!

Maghaberry a name marked by British Shame

Where by times hopes have shattered with bones

Another pit of no good is the name Hydebankwood

Where are Women are tortured alone…

Seosamh O Bradaigh

PLEASE SHARE ! GRMA

Rembering today – Oglach Tom Williams executed on this day 2nd September 1942 aged 19years. Fuair Se bas ar son Saorise ahEireann. R.I.P

Oglach Tom Williams executed by Britain 2nd September 1942 aged 19years
Fuair Se bas ar Son Saoirse ahEireann

The Irish Brigade

Remembering today Oglach Tom Williams executed on the2nd September 1942 aged 19years. Fuair se bas ar son na saoirse ahEireann

Much has been written and spoken of Tom Williams the young Clonard man executed in Belfast Prison on the 2nd September 1942. His name, and the fight to have his remains removed from the prison burial ground to a reserved grave in the Republican Plot was kept alive over the years by the National Graves Association. This campaign reached its 58 year end when in January 2000, the remains were finally laid to rest in consecrated ground in the family grave.

The National Graves Association, although keen to have the remains laid in the Republican Plot were happy to compromise with relatives, as Tom was laid with beside his mother.

An account given to the authors by a veteran North Belfast Republican, Billy Wiggins, who was imprisoned in Belfast Prison at the time of the execution sums up the atmosphere and feeling at the time.

This account has been published here for the first time:-

The days and nights proceeding Tom Williams death on the scaffold have been inbedded in my memory down through the years since. I vividly remember those days of tension, feelings of emotion, bitterness and resentment that prevailed among the three hundred or thereabouts internees in D.Wing of the prison at the time.

Following the reprievals of his five companions hopes were raised that Tom’s life might still be spared. But despite appeals from the Cardinal, Politicians North and South, all was in vain.

Naturally all forms of recreation (football, handball etc) were cancelled. The men were in no mood for anything but walking around in silence either in the excerise yard or in the mess hall. This was the old prison workshop. It was used as a kitchen, recreation room and chapel by the internees. It was decided to fast on the eve of the execution, until the special Mass the following morning at approximately the hours of Tom’s death. That was a particularly sad and painful day, and the night was also unforgettable. Being in cells in D.Wing meant that we were on the Crumlin Road side of the prison as indeed is A.Wing also. We listened as all through the night groups of women were outside the gates, one group singing hymns and reciting rosary after rosary. However another group had gathered further down the road at Bedeque Street to engage in ‘booing’, jeering and to sing Orange songs.

The Mass was to be celebrated by Fr. Oliver of Ardoyne who with another Ardoyne priest Fr. Alexis and of course Fr. McAllister the prison Chaplin, were in constant attendance with Tom all the time he was in the death cell.

I had the privilege, with J.B. O’Hagan to serve at the Mass said on an alter erected by the now deceased Jack McNally at the bottom end of the hall. During the Mass the suspense was so intense that many of the men keeled over in faint.

J.B. and myself found it difficult to remain kneeling upright on the alter steps. Fr. Oliver himself was very visibly affected. One seemed to detect a deep sigh at the consecration which seemed to coincide with Tom’s last movements.

The world was soon to be made aware of how he so nobly and courageously met his death with a smile on his lips and a prayer in his heart for God and Ireland.

Although these are some of the thoughts and feelings that existed among the internees at the time, we were always thinking about the feelings of Tom’s five comrades and the other republican prisoners in A.Wing. These must have been worse than ours, being so close to the death cell.

After a funeral Mass in St Paul’s Church, Cavendish Street, on Wednesday 19th January 2000, the remains of Tom Williams were carried from the church amid a barrage of press cameras to begin the long awaited journey to Milltown.

As the Falls Road came to a standstill, people lined the footpaths, as the Nationalist community and Republicans of all shades paid their respects and witnessed an event many of the older generation thought they would never see. Black flags flew along the road as the cortege moved slowly through Beechmount and up towards Milltown, to bring to an end the struggle to have his remains removed from an unmarked prison grave.

source milltowncemetery.com

you tube link to Irish brigade singing Ballad of Tom Williams

World Record attempt – White-line picket – Smash Internment

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Anti-Internment Rally

The Anti-Internment League invites all political, community, cultural and sporting organisations as well as ex prisoners groups, trade unions, human and civil rights groups and the republican/nationalist people of this Island to participate in a record attempt to hold the Worlds largest White-Line Picket on the Falls Road to highlight the continued unjustifiable use of Internment against Republicans in Ireland.

The record attempt will be for entry into the Guinness book of Records and will again bring to prominence the issue of Internment, putting it in the headlines and keeping it high on the political agenda.

STATEMENT FROM ROE4 POWs ON CONTROLLED MOVEMENT IN MAGHABERRY

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Dublin Cumann

Statement:

Recently Republican prisoners in Maghaberry have been subjected to an intensely restrictive regime which has resulted in intense controlled movement whereby only one prisoner accompanied by three screws is allowed out on the landing at any time.

This has virtually ground the regime to a halt and Republican prisoners are facing long delays in every aspect of their routine.

Cells are not opened to as late as 11 am, access to the phone is restricted as is access to the yard and canteen.

Governors in Maghaberry have tried to explain that this restrictive regime is a result of action being taken by the POA over a dispute around overtime. They have been told by Roe 4 prisoners that this is not acceptable and have been reminded that even before this action by the POA the phasing in of less restrictive controlled movement under the terms of the August Agreement had not been adhered to and in fact the Republican prisoners are now under a more restrictive regime than they were prior to them taking protest action.

Roe 4 Republican prisoners and their support groups on the outside demand an end to this latest abuse of Republican Prisoners and call once again for the implementation of the August Agreement.

Statement ends.

THE VISIT TO HYDEBANK PRISON CENTRE THURSDAY 4TH JULY 2013 TO SEE CHRISTINE CONNOR.

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Angela Nelson

I did not write about this visit on Thursday due to the fact that Christine Connor from North Belfast was in court yesterday (Friday) for another bail application and I was hopeful she may have got it due to the fact that she is a totally innocent young woman held on allegations which are ludicrous and gives the distinct sense of a careful set up by the spooks that are operating within our communities. Sadly she was refused on the grounds that she may have access to pipe bombs and other things.

Christine was arrested at the beginning of June and held and questioned for seven days about an alleged attack when a pipe bomb was thrown at Police who were responding to an 999 call, she was also charged with possession of pipe bombs and preparing acts of terrorism.

At the same time a young man from Shrewsbury in England was also arrested and has since been charged with terrorist offences, whilst he does not appear at the court at the same time as Christine he is being associated with her. Christine does not know this young man at all?

The fact is Christine was arrested with nothing in her possession and after lengthy searches of her home and other family members homes nothing was found and there is no forensic evidence linking her to any of these charges.

The police say they can connect her to these charges, and we as Republicans have been down this road before, when allegations are made with nothing to substantiate them yet the person can spend a long time in “Administrative Detention” until the case comes to trial.

I went to see her on Thursday with a friend of hers and we were able to spend two hours with her where she talked me through the prison regime. Christine shares a wing with one other Republican female prisoner (Sharon Rafferty who has been held in “Isolation” for 13 months) until Christine joined her. The two women have become firm friends and are very supportive of each other. They conduct themselves within the prison as strong Republicans who will not be treated as criminals, but that does not mean that the prison system is not constantly trying to harass them and their visitors by giving them prison numbers, (rather than a name) or referring to them as “Dissident terrorists “in the mixed visiting areas within earshot of other visitors.

There is no education facilities available because the two women can already read and write and there are only courses for illiterate prisoners.

There is access to the gym but it is used by ODC’s and no time slot is made available for the two women to use it without mixing with criminals.

The food is inedible so they have to purchase it form the prison shop which is expensive.

During the week they are allowed out of their cells to associate with each other but at weekends they are locked up for 16 hours a day.

These two Republican women are supported by family and close friends but we as Republicans collectively need to be more supportive and that can be done in a very simple way, send them both a letter or a card, let them know we have not forgot about them. If you live close to their families call and offer support or even inquire about their welfare.

Today we had wonderful weather, the sun was shining and as I was driving up the road young women were sitting in “Beer Gardens” having a cold drink basking in the sunshine….

TODAY CHRISTINE CONNOR HAD HER BIRTHDAY,

SHE IS 28 YEARS OF AGE AND HAS BEEN LOCKED UP FOR 16 HOURS TODAY IN A PRISON CELL BECAUSE SHE IS A REPUBLICAN…

ALL I AM ASKING YOU TO DO AT THIS STAGE IS TO WRITE TO CHRISTINE AND SHARON OR SEND A CARD TO SHOW THEM WE CARE…

Seosamh O Bradaigh

Within the last few hours Christine Connor was having a visit for her birthday when it was abruptly cut short by screws claiming the needed the room for other use, upon leaving the Gaol the 2 visitors were met at the entrance by the RUC/PSNI and arrested one of the visitors, he has since been taken to Antrim RUC/PSNI station. The person who they arrested is not a citizen of the country and is in fact an American citizen, the behaviour of the screws and the RUC/PSNI once again has been brought into question when in relation to Republicans more updates will follow

PSNI/MI5 TRACKING AND LISTENING DEVICES DISCOVERED ON LOCAL 32CSM ACTIVIST’S CAR

Derry 32 County Sovereignty Movement

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PSNI/MI5 tracking and listening devices discovered in local 32csm activist‘s car

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A member of the 32 County Sovereignty Movement has recently found what is thought to be two wireless listening bluetooth type devices and what appears to be a tracking device hidden in various parts of his car.

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The objects were discovered within 20 minutes of the Republican activist being subjected to harassment by local RUC/PSNI officers under the draconian stop and search legislation.

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The items were secreted on the underside of the Driver’s seat,underneath carpet in the rear passenger footwell and affixed behind the rear seats.

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The 32 County Sovereignty Movement would ask all to check their cars thoroughly and  would reiterate our call to all Republicans to remain vigilant and  notify your local branch of the 32csm of any suspicious objects or approachs.

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RELEASE MARTIN COREY – END BRITISH INTERNMENT NOW

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FREE MARIAN PRICE ENOUGH IS ENOUGH

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WISHING MARIAN PRICE THE BEST OF LUCK IN COURT TODAY

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Ard fheis stetement contradicts Martin’s IRA claim

This letter appeared in the Irish News on Thursday April 18 2013

IN COMPLAINING that he does not know most of those attending events oorganised by Republicans (or ‘dissidents’, as he calls them), Martin McGuinness has unwittingly exposed the mendacity of his own distortion of the historical record.

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On Friday night he told the Sinn Fein ard fheis : ” Every now and again you’ll see these so-called republicans parading…. And I look and I see these 50-year-olds, and I see these 40-year-olds…. and I don’t recoginise most of them. You know what I wonder ? I wonder where they were when there was a war.”

This statement clearly contradicts McGuinness’s claim, made under oath during the Saville inquirythat he resigned from the IRA in 1974. Given that it is a secret orgnisation one wonders how he could have known the identies of “many” of those involved in the IRA’s “war” subsequent to his own apparent departure from it. If he is so certain that these people aged in their forties and fifties were never in the IRA we can assume that he must have been a member during the peroid when they should also have been.

Anyone who is 50 years old today would have been a child in 1974, aged 11. Since the IRA did not swear in members until they reached the age of 17, they could not have joined it until January 1980. Likewise, a 45-year-old would not have been considered for membership until 1985 and a 40-yyear old until 1990. In claiming not to recognise republicans of these ages who could who could have participated in the IRA’s “war” Martin McGuinness is now contradicting his sworn statement that he left the organisation in 1974.

It will be interesting to see whether McGuinness will be asked to clarify the very obvious tension between these claims, or whether he will be allowed to continue to manipulate the historical record for his own purposes. Given that one Derry republican was jailed for refusing to participate in the SaSeville inquiry, McGuinness’s words on this matter are of profound public iinterest.

With many thanks to : Michael Donnelly, Derry City

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