The purpose of the protest is to highlight the blatant intermnent of Gabriel Mackle in Maghaberry jail.
Gabriel Mackle is is one of three currently interned by the British State, the other two are Tony Taylor and Neil Hegarty. These three men are Not the first and have joined The long list of Irish Men and Women who have suffered under The British Injustice system. The Irish people do not stand a chance of fair treatment under British occupation.
We call on all Republicans to join us on the streets of Newry to show your support for Gabriel and the other political internees.
With many thanks to: Chris Hamll, Republican Sinn Féin
I’d encourage anyone who questions the rationale behind our policy to have a read:
How can I object to Britain interfering in Irish affairs if I go over and interfere in theirs?
SINN FÉIN won seven seats in the Westminster general election running on an abstentionist ticket that has been the party’s policy for at least one hundred years.
The SDLP (which boasted about sitting in Westminster but had nothing to show for it) lost its three seats – seats held by three former leaders and two of which have now been taken by Sinn Féin.
And yet, despite the wishes of the electorate which had been heavily exposed to all the arguments, Sinn Féin’s critics – including the SDLP and Southern political parties and many in the media (few of whom wish Sinn Féin well) – continue to criticise the party for keeping to its manifesto commitment.
I was at the Belfast election count on Thursday night/Friday morning and was asked by a succession of journalists about whether, in the circumstances of a hung parliament, Sinn Féin would not drop its policy and help Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party or at least make it more difficult for Theresa May to form a government with the help of the DUP.
I said: “No, it was not going to happen.”
Many arguments have been advanced in defence of abstentionism, including that the oath or affirmation of allegiance to a foreign monarch and her heirs presents a difficulty and is inimical to one’s republicanism.
Or that one’s influence is minuscule and dwarfed by the major parties with few from the North able to demonstrate worthwhile achievements commensurate with their attendance.
These arguments, whilst valid, are not at the core of abstentionism.
For example, the oath could be completely removed. Or, imagine Britain a republic.
It might well be possible for some of the parties who take their seats to point to pieces of legislation that they have influenced or initiated.
In the circumstances of a hung parliament, it is undeniable that a tail might be able to wag the much bigger dog for a time. But even if the oath was removed and I was an MP, I would still not take my seat.
Even if Britain was a republic, I would still not take my seat.
Even if I held the balance of power and could get through bits and pieces of legislation (while flattering myself as to the magnitude of my importance), I would still not take my seat.
For me, it is quite simple: How can I object to Britain interfering in Irish affairs if I go over and interfere in theirs?
Once I took my seat (with or without an oath), I have lost the moral high ground on that question of Irish sovereignty and I have conceded Britain’s right to govern on this shore – a claim that was demonstrably rejected in December 1918 by the majority of people in Ireland in a democratic election.
Even though for reasons of pragmatism I support agreements which were passed into law in the House of Commons, this does not mean that I recognise Britain’s claim to rule over me as being legitimate. Leinster House and Stormont, for all their many flaws, are assemblies of the people of this island.
Furthermore, the state I live in is not the state I grew up in. Much has changed, often beyond recognition; much has clearly still to be changed.
I am in the business of building a new society in Ireland out of the two states which currently exist. To do that I need to win over a significant body of support from the unionist community as well as winning over people in the South who have lived for a century under successive partitionist governments who have never acted in truly national terms.
The Establishment in the South distances itself from us by increasingly in its discourse conflating the 26 Counties with ‘Ireland’, although the threat of Brexit to the Southern economy and to the security of the Peace process has suddenly produced fresh (some might say opportunistic) interest in reunification.
On Friday, the day after the general election, I tweeted:
“In interfering in British affairs the DUP will gather many enemies.” I hadn’t appreciated how quickly that would happen nor the scale of the revulsion.
The British, especially the English, deeply resent anyone else telling them what to do. In simplistic terms, it explains their dislike of Europe and the Brexit vote.
As an exercise, imagine that the Labour and Tory wins were reversed and that Sinn Féin’s seven seats would be enough to support a Labour minority government, and that the party, out of the blue, took its Westminster seats.
Make no mistake about it – the British public and the British media would be just as scathing of republicans as they are now of the DUP, although the DUP – because of its homophobic, racist and sectarian proclivities – presents much more fertile ground for ridicule and attack.
And that is because the British, especially the English, do not like outsiders interfering in their affairs. Although the Scottish National Party would also have faced criticism were it to prop up, say, a Corbyn minority government, the criticism and the type of condemnation would not be as visceral as the attacks on the Irish unionists because Scotland and Wales are unquestionably viewed differently from the Six Counties.
Incidentally, those famous Irish politicians who did take their oath and seats in Westminster failed abysmally in their objectives.
Daniel O’Connell failed to achieve the Repeal of the Union. Charles Stewart Parnell and his Irish Parliamentary Party, after decades in Westminster, and his successor, John Redmond, failed to achieve Home Rule but did manage to sacrifice the lives of 50,000 Irish Volunteers in the First World War who were fooled into believing they were fighting for the freedom of a small nation – Ireland.
I’m not including one major success at Westminster by the original Ulster Unionist Party because their exclusion of the Six Counties and the abandonment of the Home Rule Act has proved to be one unmitigated disaster for everyone.
By abstaining from Westminster, Sinn Féin is making a powerful statement – that the people who vote for it reject British rule and British interference.
And that is something that should give British people pause for thought. If you are livid at the prospects of a party from here going over there to interfere and make your laws, how do you think we feel after all these centuries?
This sordid Tory/DUP arrangement (if it comes off) may not last long. It will ultimately damage both parties but, more immediately, will jeopardise the prospects of a return to devolution.
Why would Sinn Féin go into an Executive in which the DUP has a disproportionate degree of influence over the British Government – an alleged joint-guarantor with the Irish Government of the Belfast Agreement?
One perhaps unforeseen consequence of the DUP’s willingness to go into coalition with a British Government is that the DUP is effectively relinquishing any objection it might make in the future to Sinn Féin doing exactly the same in Dublin.
For the DUP I hope that the demonisation they are facing (and which must appear as unjust and unfair to them) is a chastening experience and one which will make them or their supporters reflect on the antediluvian nature of their policies which encroach on the freedom of others.
I also hope it makes them realise that in actual fact they belong here more than over there.
It is here, not over there, they should be entering into a true pact with their fellow Irish people.
With many thanks to: Republican Sinn Féin,
Follow these links to find out more about Danny Morrison: http://www.irishnews.com/news/2016/02/03/news/senior-republican-claims-ira-stood-down-stakeknife-in-1990-404194/
A selection of pictures of Harressment and Intimidation that members of Republican Sinn Féin are subjected to in the Occupied 6 Counties in the North (on a daily basis) PLEASE FOLLOW THE LINK TO WATCH THE VIDEO, THANKYOU: https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=1395038820557708&id=100001548109903
From almost daily stop and searches of persons and vehicles to more intimidating measures of forceably entering family homes to scare and put fear into innocent kids and families during house raids which are another tactic used by the british ruc psni to try and break families!!
All these things do is make republicans stronger and more determined to rid these armed british thugs from our country and give Ireland back to the Irish again!!
With many thanks to: Christopher Hamill, Republican Sinn Féin.
Today Charles Windsor and his wife were imposed on the people of Finglas and Glasnevin in another choreographed play of normality between the 26-County State and their erstwhile royal family from London. Today’s show follows on from the stage-managed pieces in other parts of Ireland, both occupied and 26-County.
The people of Finglas were effectively annexed off from the city centre this morning, 26-County police were present at every junction and by-road from Finglas that lead past Glasnevin. Residents living in close proximity to the cemetery had to wait within their homes for an escort from the same police. Irrespective of where they wished to travel they were denied passage past the cemetery. They were escorted in the direction of Finglas and then had to make their own way around a police cordon that encompassed the cemetery. At the Glasnevin side a barrier approximately three meters high was erected across the road stopping the passage of anyone or any vehicle
Two small protests were held at either side of the entrance to Glasnevin, on this occasion the police stopped all pedestrians and road users far enough from the entrance that no noise interruption would be heard for those “dignitaries” present. Members of the public attempting to go about their daily business were stopped and questioned as to their destinations etc.
The graveyard itself was patrolled in its entirety by uniformed and plain-clothes police. Similarly police vehicles of every kind were to be seen parked at every junction with Transit vans full of police “at the ready” should there be any trouble. As Charles approached the graveyard, the protesters on the Glasnevin side were assaulted by police and a megaphone taken by plain-clothes police. As this statement goes to print it is unsure if any arrests were made, but in line with other protests the police have been ordered to make no arrests at the protests and just issue summonses afterwards.
12.Bealtaine /May 2017.
With many thanks to: Republican Sinn Féin
Today as members of Sands Devlin Cumann, McDonnell Doherty Cumann and Wolfe Tone Cumann Republican Sinn Féin were returning to Lurgan after Commemorating our patriot dead in Belfast, they had the unfortunate experience of passing the ever dwindling British Sinn Féin commemoration. As the bands passed an RSF member asked if “take it down from the mast” would be played. Unfortunately they were not taking requests.
British politician and upholder of British rule in Ireland John O’Dowd then proceeded to approach the RSF members flanked by his RUC heavy gang and suggested that an RSF member would be “anxious to be getting back to Scotland” and that they should be “going home before getting themselves in trouble”. At this he was met with laughter and the message was made clear that no Irish man or woman would be told to get off Irelands streets by a British politician.
With many thanks to: Sands Devlin Cummann.
Statement by the President of Republican Sinn Féin Des Dalton
Republican Sinn Féin salutes Gabriel Mackle on his courageous defence of his distinct identity and autonomy as an Irish Republican POW within the Maghaberry prison. Irish Republican POWs have historically had to run the gauntlet of British and 26-County state attempts to criminalise them and deny them their identity, shamefully on this occasion this latest injustice comes at the hands of those purporting to be fellow Irish Republicans. To compound the injustice is the fact that it was the CABHAIR supported prisoners who won the right of Republican prisoners to have their separate identity accepted by the prison regime. The CABHAIR supported prisoners led the dirty protests which resulted in the August 2010 Agreement.
This attempt to deny Gabriel Mackle his own political identity and autonomy brings only shame to those who have a hand in it. By cloaking their actions in the name of Republicanism they sully that noble banner. A statement issued under the name of “Republican Prisoners, Roe 4” in Maghaberry prison by the group styling itself Saoradh is quite simply a tissue of lies and calculated smear, designed to hide what is really happening here.
In an attempt to smear Gabriel Mackle the statement cites his previous membership of the British Army’s Royal Irish Regiment. This is a matter of public record. Irish Republican history is littered with instances of Irish patriots who having served in the British Army subsequently gave honourable and heroic service to the cause of Irish freedom, James Connolly, Michael Mallin and Tom Barry are notable examples.
This statement cannot disguise the reality of what is going on in Maghaberry. Gabriel Mackle’s right, a right inherent to all Republican POWs, to maintain his own political identity is being attacked. Historically this right has always been respected by Republican prisoners regardless of organisation. However, this latest move to deny Gabriel Mackle this right echoes the actions of the Provisionals who in 1986 forced Republican prisoners who refused to renounce their Republican principles and abandon their allegiance to the All-Ireland Republic off prison landings.
Today it seems similar tactics are being employed by a grouping that it seems will not tolerate any alternative views. When these people speak of unity we now can see what they really mean. They are simply Provo – lite, aping the tactics and mindset of the Provisionals. They will be no more successful in their attempts to intimidate faithful Irish Republicans than the reformist Provos were before them.
We will not be intimidated or deflected from our work. Over the decades we have seen many such groupings styling themselves as Republican come and go. Republican Sinn Féin and the Republican Movement long predate them and will long outlast them. This year we mark 100 years since the historic 1917 Ard Fheis at which Sinn Féin adopted a Republican constitution. We are proud of our history of unbroken continuity of principle and organisation. Over the course of that century faithful Irish Republicans have defended that constitution from those who have attempted to subvert it, in 1921, 1926, 1946, 1969/70 and 1986. We will remain steadfast in our allegiance to the All-Ireland Republic of Easter and determined in our pursuit of our Republican goals. Once more we salute Gabriel Mackle and pledge him our continued solidarity and support. Maith thú Gabriel.
With many thanks to: Des Dalton, President Republican Sinn Féin.
Comrades, we are gathered here today to pay homage to our brave volunteers and to highlight the plight that they are currently facing as they languish in captivity. It is important to send not only our Solidarity, but also to show our defiance of British rule and continue to progress towards the United Ireland we need.
With many thanks to: Republican Sinn Féin Wexford: