The newly contructed County Antrim IRSM plot at Milltown Cemetery
Stalwart members of the Daly/McNamee Cumann have done a sterling job in transforming the new County Antrim Irish Republican Socialist Movement plot at Milltown Cemetery. The vast improvement is a credit to the Daly/MacNamee Cumann’s members, especially as it approaches the 10 October, the 16th anniversary of the cruel murder of INLA Volunteer, Paddy ‘Bo’ Campbell, interred there after forfeiting his very young life protecting the movement from armed organised gangsters intent, but ultimately failing, in crushing the IRSM in Dublin in 1999.
Speaking as work concluded at the newly refurbished County Antrim IRSM memorial, Daly/McNamee Cumann spokesperson, Joe Heaney, told The IRSP News,
“This transformation is due to the dedication and skill of Daly/McNamee Cumann members who gave their free time willingly to give the Volunteers and Comrades interred at the new memorial the fitting tribute they deserved. It is especially timely with the forthcoming 16th anniversary of young Paddy ‘Bo’ Campbell’s brutal murder, on October 10th, at the hands of the dregs of society who were poisoning young working class kids with Heroin and other narcotics. It goes without saying that all those interred here gave their lives for the establishment of a United Socialist Ireland and now they have the memorial they deserved.”
Certainly sentiments The Irish Republican Socialist News and no doubt all members agree with.
Well done to those members who constructed the memorial!
The delegations from Hawaii, Costa Rica, African North America, Ireland, Catalonia, Basilicata, Donbass, Libyan Arab Republic and Western Sahara
At a conference in Moscow titled “A dialogue of nations: Peoples’ right to self-determination and the building of a multi-polar world”, hosted by the Anti-Globalisation Movement of Russia, the IRSP reiterated its calls for total people’s sovereignty, over all aspects, of our collective Irish national interests.
The conference in Moscow brought together different separatist movements from imperialist occupied territories from around the globe. Anti-Globalisation, anti-neoliberalist and pro- rights of peoples representatives from Hawaii, Costa Rica, African North America, Ireland, Catalonia, Basilicata, Donbass, Libyan Arab Republic and Western Sahara were given a platform and access to over 80 different Russian national and international media outlets. All were interested to hear our analysis of geo-political events and our own respective national political programmes.
The Irish Republican Socialist Party used the occasion to reiterate our position on ending the economic, military and political occupation of the entire island of Ireland.
The IRSP stated “ Although the visual physical manifestations of the occupation of our island have been reduced, the British military installations are gone from the borders,replaced with high tech surveillance equipment, the British army (for the most part) has been returned to barracks the entire island of Ireland is more occupied than it ever was. In the occupied North East the failed Belfast Agreement has copper-fastened the British occupation and promotes a sectarian pantomime settlement that drives a neo-liberalist economic war against the British occupied Irish people.
The IRSP continues “ Southern Ireland ( 26 County Free State ) has become a Brussels controlled Plutocracy which also wages a neoliberalist class war against its own people. The race to the bottom to privatise the entire Free State society, redistribute and entire nations wealth, to a small elite cabal is being fought and won by the capitalist establishment.”
The IRSP said “We again, to this international audience of progressives, reiterate our call for full British military, economic and political withdrawal from the occupied north eastern counties. We call for the total withdrawal of US military installations, economic and cultural interests from the entire island. We reiterate our stance that the European Union, European Central Bank and International Monetary Fund must withdraw all political and economic interests in every part of the island of Ireland. The IRSP stand for a sovereign Irish people and a sovereign Irish nation with the means of production, distribution and exchange firmly in control of the entire people of Ireland for the collective enrichment of all the people of Ireland.”
At an Anti-Globalisation Movement of Russia press conference, in Moscow, the Irish Republican Socialist Party and the African Peoples Socialist Party made a joint appeal for the Irish Diaspora in North America to support Black Liberation.
Comrade Micheál MacLochlainn of the IRSP continues “In 1982 Chairman Omali Yeshitela, of the African Peoples Socialist Party, travelled to Belfast to release a joint appeal, with the IRSP, to Irish America, calling for unqualified support for Black Liberation. During this press conference in 1982 the IRSP stated that our organisation will not accept any financial donations from any Irish American organisations that do not openly give support to Black Liberation and National Liberation and Socialism in Ireland, and Africa. “
Comrade MacLochlainn continues “Irish and Africans are united in our shared experience of oppression by White Power. Both our peoples have been traded by the capitalist establishment as commodities, not like contemporary wage slaves, or debt slaves, but an entirely different type of slavery. Our shared experiences with oppression have led to physical, cultural and economic slavery we were not chained to the capitalist system, historically our men women and children were physically chained and sold for profit by it.”
Comrade MacLochlainn finishes “We are proud to announce the old ties and relationships between the African struggle and the Irish struggle against oppression have been reunited by the link’s re-forged by the IRSP and APSP. We call for a total withdrawal of all heavily armed American State Paramilitary police forces from African communities in North America and an immediate end to all political policing of African communities in North American. We support the calls for immediate reparations by the current British and American establishments to the oppressed Irish and African peoples. Though we also accept that even if we built Gallows and hanged the entire British Monarchy and Capitalist British and American 1% it still would not be compensation enough for the crimes committed, and currently being carried out, against our peoples. Smash White Power!”
The fight between the savagery of the self-styled ‘Islamic state’ and the Kurdish YPG defence militias represents a fight for survival between two fundamentally opposing views of civilisation, and those with even the most basic grasp of progressive ideas must decide today which side they are on and act.
So was told a gathering in Belfast’s Conway mill on Saturday 12th September 2015. The public meeting ‘Eyewitness from Syria ‘featured contributions from the mother of a fallen English YPG fighter who was killed in action in March this year and a 62 year old who himself had volunteered for action with the Kurdish Resistance.
Vicci Scurfield, mother of Konstandinos Erik Scurfield – the first English fighter to die fighting in defence of the Kurdish people – travelled to Belfast along with 62 year old former archaeologist Alan Brooke who himself volunteered for action with the YPG. Although being turned down for active service due to his age, Alan was taken on a tour of the Qandil mountain region considered a liberated zone of the Kurdish resistance. There he was introduced to the PKK leadership and shown around the guerrilla camps before being urged by the resistance fighters to return home and build support for their cause.
Both speakers gave acute in-depth and moving reasons for why international fighters are travelling to defend the Kurdish people from the brutal onslaught of ISIS and why it is vital that others with progressive mindsets here do all in their power to give practical support to the YPG.
Vicci Scurfield described her son in the most ordinary of terms stressing the humanity of the young man who spent his short life immersing himself in a myriad of lifestyle activities; an aspiring actor and literature enthusiast who spent his 21st birthday hiking across the Alps in order to complete National Service in Greece (her native country) before taking up boxing and becoming a Royal Marine Commando in England.
She described how ‘Kosta’ (as he was affectionately known) became increasingly sympathetic to radical ideas on reading reports of the gallant resistance put up by Kurdish resistance at Kobane, which she described as ‘turning the tide against ISIS’. Determined to ‘even up the odds against the savagery of the so called ‘Islamic State’, Kosta walked out on the Marines by stating to them plainly ‘let me go or I will desert’.
In December 2013 he made his mother aware that he intended to go fight for the YPG at which point she tried to prevent him from doing so, but to no avail. She described how after only 10 days he took part in the rescue of over 5000 encircled Yazidis on the Sinjar Mountain in north western Iraq, helping them escape an encirclement that promised certain death.
Describing Islamic State as no less than a Cult of death, a criminal empire engaged in wholesale slaughter, rape and oppression, Vikki described in vivid detail how its followers profited from industrial scale child sexual exploitation, slavery and theft.
Chillingly she spelt out the rights of non followers under the rule of Islamic State…. ‘If they want your house? Your dead, if they want your jewellery? Your dead, if they want your six year old daughter? Your dead’.
Worryingly, Vikki described how at least 30 foreign ISIS fighters came from Ireland and how in logistical terms Islamic State were in no way defeated and how Airstrikes by both the Turkish and Nato governments were aimed more so at tempering the growing power of the progressive liberated Kurdish areas than at I.S itself. She finished by stating her own belief that the only truly progressive force in the region was the Kurdish resistance and appealed on those present to do all in their power to provide practical support to the resistance fighters of the YPG.
Alan Brooke described with the aid of a slideshow, the logistical and political terrain within which the Kurdish resistance operate as well as explaining in great depth, the theoretical backbone of the Kurdish movement ‘democratic con-federalism’ applied in a Kurdish its unprecedented commitment to equality, democracy and women’s rights.
Alan described the conflict situation as representing a clash of views on the purpose of civilisation itself, stressing how ‘Islamic State’ followed a world-view in which a savage state ensured that women and minorities would be oppressed and where barbarity and intolerance were the order of the day, whereas on the other hand the Kurdish resistance were attempting to create communities based on compassion, tolerance and Socialism.
Echoing his comrade Vicci who finished by stating …’the best of Humanity have gone to join the YPG, while the worst have joined ISIS’ Alan finished by urging those in attendance to form active support groups on the ground which could provide practical assistance to the YPG.
The Belfast Kurdish community where in fine attendance on the day, and as a result valuable links were forged between Local Republican Socialists and our International comrades.
The Republican Socialist movement would like to thank all those who attended to make the day such a memorable success and take this opportunity to echo the calls of our visitors who rightly stressed the importance of giving active support for the Kurdish resistance, in defence of Socialism and in opposition to barbarism.
EYEWITNESS FROM SYRIA. Mother of fallen YPG fighter, along with a visitor to the PKK stronghold in the Qandil Mountains will speak on the fight against ISIS and the liberated areas of Rojava.
The Irish Republican Socialist Party will be hosting an information evening with the intention of raising public awareness of the plight of the Kurdish people and their ongoing struggle against ISIS terror, and efforts to create a just society within the liberated zones of Rojava.
‘Viki Konstandinos’ is the mother of YPG Volunteer Konstandinos Scurfield, a 25 year old native of Barnsley in Yorkshire who was killed in action in March of this year, defending the Kurdish frontline village area of Tek Khuzela, Syria.
A former Royal Marine Commando, Konstandinos or ‘Kosta’ is described by his mother, foremost as a humanitarian, who became increasingly politicised while hearing of the plight of the besieged Kurdish people. He drew natural comparisons between the YPG (Kurdish Protection Units) and the European Anti-Nazi partisans of the 1940s and having resigned from the British army, he initially worked providing Humanitarian and medical aid to struggling Kurdish freedom fighters inevitably being moved to action in late 2014 becoming a fighter with the ‘Lions of Rojava’ foreign YPG battalion.
By all accounts Kosta earned an exemplary military record displaying extraordinary commitment and bravery in combat, praised as a hero and a martyr by his comrades in the YPG, he was brought down by RPG fire during a ferocious battle with the so called ‘Islamic State’ while on the offensive against ISIS occupied positions around Til Hamis town in Hasakah province.
Since his death, Kosta’s mother Viki, has toured meetings across England raising support and awareness of the Kurdish cause and the efforts of the YPG. In recent weeks, her sons YPG comrades, having fought on and liberated further areas of Rojava, took a captured ‘ISIS’ flag and presented it to her as a token of their acknowledgement of her own sacrifice.
62 Year old Alan Brooke is an English historian, a former Archaeologist and a supporter of the Kurdish Struggle. This year he too took the decision to leave his native village in Yorkshire to travel and fight in defence of the Kurdish liberated areas. Making contact with comrades in the Kurdish capital of Sulaymaniyah, he was initially told he was “too old” to volunteer as a fighter. However, aware of his value in helping spread the message back home in England, he was smuggled through the Qandil mountain region. There he was introduced to the PKK leadership and shown around the guerilla camps.
Also in attendance will be members of the “Rojava Calling” group from Dublin, who have recently returned from the besieged Syrian town of Kobane.
Together, Vikki and Alan have toured around England on an independent (non-aligned) remit raising awareness of the Kurdish struggle, in this they have been joined by Long term left activist Matt Broughton who has initiated the Belfast and Derry meetings along with the IRSP.
Matt himself has been a long time friend of the Irish struggle and Republican Socialism in particular, a former member of Red Action, he took part in many political delegations to Ireland in the early 90s. In the late 90s he studied politics at Queens University and worked intensively for the rights of Republican Prisoners in Maghaberry, Portlaoise and in English gaols throughout the period.
All are welcome to attend and listen to what will be a meeting of historical significance. ‘Eyewitness from Syria’ will take place in The Belfast meeting will occur in the afternoon, Saturday 12st September in Conway Mill at 4pm.
Fundrasing event to be held in The Red Devil 8pm till late Saturday 12th September.
The unforgivable images which have emerged in recent days – depicting the forced eviction of the Lloyd family from their family home in Kells County Meath – should serve as a wakeup call to the Irish Nation, illustrating the severity of the Class War now being waged upon us by the agents of Foreign and domestic capitalism.
The brutal 19th century evictions of downtrodden Irish families at the bidding of foreign financiers cast an eternal spectre over the Irish psyche; it was and remains an enduring image, representative of the oppression of our people.
In the classrooms across our country, through song, fireside stories and in print, accounts of the heartless actions of crown bailiffs, court sheriffs’ and their hired constabulary were etched into the Irish mindset and (until recently) instilled both a resolute class based hatred for the word ‘bailiff’ and a national determination that such humiliation as endured by previous Irish generations would not be repeated in the time of existing generations.
Also taught to the children of Ireland, was the tried and tested Irish tactic of mass working class resistance, known now as the ‘Boyott’. The means by which one Captain Boycott was driven from his ill gotten lands and indeed from Ireland itself by tactics in which both him and his locally hired mercenaries, guilty of assisting in the infliction of socio-economic hardship upon Irish Families would be shunned and rejected in all possible interactions, making their existence within the community virtually impossible.
The tactic was probably best summed up by Parnell, when he explained….’When a man takes a farm from which another has been evicted, you must shun him on the roadside when you meet him – you must shun him in the streets of the town – you must shun him in the shop – you must shun him on the fair green and in the market place, and even in the place of worship, by leaving him alone, by putting him in moral Coventry, by isolating him from the rest of the country, as if he were the leper of old – you must show him your detestation of the crime he committed’.
The financiers ultimately responsible for the eviction of the Lloyds from their family home on Wednesday, know nothing of this legacy nor the shared National/Class history familiar to all but the youngest of Irish people. They are not of our people nor of the Working Class, and in all matters (financial & social) the old saying ‘what can you expect from a pig but a grunt’ serves as an apt analysis of the action and motives of mortgage lender Stepstone Mortgages, an American finance company which (according to ‘Real Irish Media’) operate from 1, Spenser Dock, North Wall Quay, Dublin 1.
However in this (and the many more shameful evictions which have occurred here over recent years) there are those from both our National and Working Class social pool who are well aware of what was our deep rooted and sacred duty to avoid and resist any repetition of the humiliation of another Irish Family being dumped by the roadside, by the Bailiffs, the Sherriff’s and the hired Constabulary of Foreign financiers.
By their greed driven actions, Irish traitors such as Solicitors AC Forde & Co whose offices are at 14, Lansdowne Road, Dublin 4 (tel. 01 6608955), have forfeited the right to consider themselves as of the Irish people and deserve to be rejected from amongst us through the use of the Boycott tactic mentioned above.
So to for The County Registrar responsible for issuing the eviction order, be it Bridget O’Malley or her Louth ‘stand-in’ Mairead Ahern. So too the Assistant Sherriff Bernie McCormack who resides at Meadstown, Dunderry, Navan, Co. Meath.
Bailiff Joseph Moran also sits on this Roll of Dishonour, as having turned his back on the Irish people and the Irish Working Class in particular. Indeed all who co-operated in this forced eviction deserve to be rejected as the Class/National traitors they are.
The Irish Republican Socialist Party, in response to the increasing severity of unjustifiable class war on our most vulnerable (the most shocking of which being the re-emergence of the forced eviction) calls for the revival of the tactic of popular Boycott. That a database of the guilty be drawn up nationwide and distributed to communities for the purposed of peaceful yet effective resistance.
We call for this measure in defence of our class and as a demonstration to the heartless minority (be they Financers, Sherrifs, Bailiffs or Gardai) that the Irish people, in the proud history of our fighting forefathers, will not suffer perpetually for the interests of Foreign capital.
On August 20th the Irish Republican Socialist Party in Belfast held a dignified white line vigil in memory of H-Block martyr, INLA Hunger Striker Michael Devine who died 34 Years ago after 60 days without food. The white line vigil took place on the Falls Road.
Michael Divine was the last of 10 Volunteers who died during the 1981 Hunger Strike in the hard fought struggle to gain political Status in the face of an intransigent Thatcherite prison administration.
‘Red Mickey’ as he was affectionately known both in the H-Blocks and in his native Derry city, was a former member of the Derry Labour movement, the Civil Rights Association as well as the Official IRA before becoming a founding member of the IRSP and the INLA after the formation of the modern Republican Socialist movement in 1974.
His was a life immersed in the National and Class Struggle. An active participant in the creation and defence of the Free Derry liberated zone in 1969, Michael Devine not only committed himself to armed defence of his people but also to the vital (although less glamorous) task of political organisation and social mobilisation.
An eyewitness to the Bloody Sunday massacre of 1972, this event and its aftermath confirmed to him that Armed Struggle against the Britain State was a vital component in the Struggle to Liberate Ireland and the Working Class.
On witnessing the lying in state of the Para’s 13 victims, Michael Devine stated… “That sight more than anything convinced me that there will never be peace in Ireland while Britain remains. When I looked at those coffins I developed a commitment to the republican cause that I have never lost.”
His steadfast commitment to Armed Struggle saw Red Mickey naturally follow the path of Seamus Costello when he moved to oppose the creeping reformist position of the Officials and created the Irish Republican Socialist Movement.
Arrested on the evening of September 20th, 1976, after an arms raid on a private Donegal weaponry – from which the INLA commandeered several rifles and shotguns, and three thousand rounds of ammunition – Michael Devine spent 9 months on remand in Belfast’s Crumlin Road prison.
Upon being sent to the H-Blocks Michael Devine embarked upon the ongoing Blanket and No-wash ‘dirty’ protest, suffering horrendous conditions and maltreatment for 4 years.
In 1980 he briefly joined the first Hunger Strike which was to end without resolution, then on June 22nd 1981, as part of a rolling Hunger Strike incorporating both IRA & INLA prisoners, he joined Joe McDonnell, Kieran Doherty, Kevin Lynch, Martin Hurson, Thomas McElwee and Paddy Quinn on a Hunger Strike to the death.
Micky died at 7.50 am on Thursday, August 20th 1981 aged 27. Had he not commenced protest he would have been eligible for release the following September, instead he chose to fight on and to the death. He was a father of two.
Speaking tonight Gerard Foster and Gerard Hodgins (both former H-Block prisoners) spoke of what Michael Divines sacrifice meant to them, of the legacy of the period and the debt which today’s Republicans and Republican Socialists owe both the men of 1981 and all other Hunger Strikers who gave their lives for political status and the wider Irish Freedom Struggle.
Organisers must explain their position after young boy is handed a sub-machine gun by PSNI at Féile an Phobail ‘family fun day’.
After an appalling week for Féile and Phobail, which has seen a large and angry protest at the presence of PSNI chief constable George Hamilton. Belfast IRSP are calling on Féile an Phobail director Kevin Gamble to now also explain exactly why and how the PSNI were in a position to hand what appears to be a loaded sub-machine gun to a young child at a Féile hosted ‘Family fun day’ just this week.
Photographs obtained by the IRSP show a young child in control of what is clearly a PSNI weapon, alongside him stands another who appears to be wearing paramilitary garb of the political police force. In another photo the children are seen clearly playing inside the PSNI armoured jeep.
In what appears to be a repetition of a practice from decades gone by (wherein the British Army regularly allowed young children to handle their rifles) this move looks to be a carbon copy of that practice, the purpose being to win the hearts and minds of children from working class areas.
Speaking on the worrying development, Gerry Foster of Belfast IRSP stated….’It is quite clear from the pictures that these young children were cynically exploited by armed PSNI officers for political and tactical ends, this is an action straight out of the British Army hand book, it is very very wrong and will be criticised by all right thinking people’.
He further added ….’Féile organisers and not least Kevin Gamble its director, need to explain themselves to the people of West Belfast in the wake of these pictures. In the past years there has risen a justifiable perception, that the PSNI are being offered a priority place at Féile events, in order to normalise that force in line with Sinn Féin party policy. These pictures go some way to backing up that perception and it is up to Féile an Phobail to now distance themselves from the PSNI and the rational that lies behind their actions in the Falls Park this week.
In recent years Féile an Phobail has came under intense criticism from many who have objected to the profiteering nature of many of the events which occur under its title, and their inaccessibility to cash pressed local people in favour of pleasing an increasing middle class audience.
This latest clear attempt by the PSNi (a paramilitary police force currently engaged in gross miscarriages of Justice and abuses of Human rights) to use a family fun day in an attempt to ingratiate themselves amongst young children, raises questions which cannot be ignored.
1. Do Féile an Phobail actively encourage the PSNI to appear prominantly at their events?
2. If so then why is this the case?
3. If not will they be calling for the PSNI to stay away in the future and/or at least distance themselves from this gross and cynical attempt to exploit a young working class child?