Scariest place in NI?

Tappet and those other delusional ding bats.

So let’s assume (if only to calm you down), that you lot are right? That everything I have posted is bollocks?
SO WHAT, WHO GIVES A FOOK. WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN TO ME? GOD IS GOING TO THROW LIGHTNING BOLTS AT ME? The Arrse squad are going to lock me up for life, for having the audacity not to take Arrse as anything other than a China made bat soup. I am going to be considered as unfit for Arrse’s respect. Grow up people for fooks sake this is Arrse.

When I mention Arrse to friends that served, I have yet to meet anyone who doesn't laugh at the idea. As I have also noted the Deputy chief constable of Leicestershire used to live in our village. When I mentioned Arrse to him, his advice was to leave well alone as far as the police were concerned membership of such was akin to kiddy fiddling, far right terror gangs and a shed load of low life junkies, and chancers and he was being very serious. As I noted 8 months ago, it was my intention to scoop this years Spot the Ball competition, and I think I have done extremely well in that horse race, I must be the Odds on favourite for this years championship? So far ahead of the field they might as well draw a line across the competition and award me what’s rightfully mine.

Think about it half-wits, why do so many genuine ex-service people pop up and then disappear just as quickly, once they get a flavour of the dribbling that goes on here?

Unless your brain cells have gone for a walk, this is Arrse, as the name suggests it contains a load of shoit. And those of us who post play the game based on the biggest pile of shoit, we can possibly come up with. Point me to 1 poster who hasn’t added to the game, hasn’t come out with the biggest load of bollocks known to man? It’s why we all join in the first place?

Nobody above the rank of WO1 considers Arrse to be anything other than a place to scramble one‘s brain cells with a load of flying bullshit. Rupert s Ex and still serving use Arrse as they are so befuddled by the fantasy known as a military Career, that they suck up anything painted green.

And of course that’s your problem, you take the whole thing far to seriously. Even if I were a tappet what is the likely outcome of all this? What, a load of mentally retarded navel gazers have a meltdown over my escapades as a Soldier? As far as I am concerned, nobody (apart from myself and a handful of others Dinger, and the French Mob) who posts on Arrse has served a single day in any arm of the armed forces. That’s what being a LMFer means, somebody such as yourself who was so gutless they had to send for your mummy as you had shit the pants as you crossed the recruiting office doorstep. And when she turned up she was heard to say, ‘There there dear, mummy-kins has got your cage warmed up and a nice bowl of chicken soup ready’ followed by ‘I told you, that you should have stuck with ballet lessons they are much more your cup of tea’

By by dribbling LMFers, I got paint to watch dry.
Yes dear, that’s nice.
 

Oops

War Hero
From Reuters:
A double celebration for researchers this morning. Not only was a new category of flounce reported but a rare sighting of the lesser spotted fibbing robme was confirmed. The scientific community are overjoyed with confirmation that fantasists have not only survived lockdown but have emerged with the lying gene intact and an ability to claim having friends.

In honour of the first post lockdown tantrum on to these pages, Professor Elton John of Hull Aquarium has awarded the above a new classification of flounce - the " Robme Fantastic Flounce "

Elon Musk was not available for comment.
@MoE
I bet you never thought your 5000'th post would be a result of such fantasytic consequence?

( As long as you're only assuming)
Congratulations, btw!
 
@RoofRat the above is a load of shite, he’s a proven weaver of “look at me “ posts.
His command of the English language indicates he left school at 16. 12 months later he was still too young to be deployed on Op Banner. His description of the 'scene' fits perfectly with images that are in the public domain. He wasn't there, but I would give him a break......something just isn't right.
 
Pretty much common knowledge - but what, perhaps, isn't is the fact there were more than a few who abhorred the Provos Marxist-Leninist principles... particularly among the officer corps of the Irish Army... many of whom attended British Army courses.... and grand fellows they were too.
The Provos came into being partly (and substantially) because of their opposition to the Marxist-Leninist principles promoted by the Dublin-based 'Goulding' IRA. Later known as OIRA, their intent was to forge links with other Marxist and left wing organizations, regardless of relegious persuasion, in the belief that a united working class would eventually prevail. They also intended to abolish their abstention to taking seats in the Irish parliament.

Both of these factors were denounced by IRA veteran Jimmy Steele in a speech at Ballyglass cemetary in July 1969 - a moment in time for which many republicans initialled the beginning of what would become the PIRA/OIRA split at the end of 1969. Steele was influential in the formation of the Provos and chaired a meeting above a shop in Clonard on the 18 December 1969 which resulted in the establishment of the 'Republican News'. Whatever else can be levelled at the Provos, 'Marxist' isn't one of them.
 

Carbon 6

War Hero
The Provos came into being partly (and substantially) because of their opposition to the Marxist-Leninist principles promoted by the Dublin-based 'Goulding' IRA. Later known as OIRA, their intent was to forge links with other Marxist and left wing organizations, regardless of relegious persuasion, in the belief that a united working class would eventually prevail. They also intended to abolish their abstention to taking seats in the Irish parliament.

Both of these factors were denounced by IRA veteran Jimmy Steele in a speech at Ballyglass cemetary in July 1969 - a moment in time for which many republicans initialled the beginning of what would become the PIRA/OIRA split at the end of 1969. Steele was influential in the formation of the Provos and chaired a meeting above a shop in Clonard on the 18 December 1969 which resulted in the establishment of the 'Republican News'. Whatever else can be levelled at the Provos, 'Marxist' isn't one of them.
I may have mentioned this in another thread some time ago, but in the 1970's, I was a member of a band that played on both sides of the political and religious divide in Northern Ireland.

On one occasion we were hired to play in an obviously PIRA club off the Falls Rd in Belfast. It was obvious due to the posters on the walls and having my driving licence checked by a young thug wielding a Browning 9mm.

We were given a storage room at the top of the building to use as a changing room and being a curious type, (nosy bugger) I had a look around. I was intrigued to find the back of the room stacked to the ceiling with tied bundles of Pravda and Izvestia. They were three day old English editions.

I know little of the political affiliations of the IRA or PIRA and care less, but if the USSR was sending their newspapers, I'm sure they were sending much more.
 
Tappet and those other delusional ding bats.

So let’s assume (if only to calm you down), that you lot are right? That everything I have posted is bollocks?
SO WHAT, WHO GIVES A FOOK. WHAT IS GOING TO HAPPEN TO ME? GOD IS GOING TO THROW LIGHTNING BOLTS AT ME? The Arrse squad are going to lock me up for life, for having the audacity not to take Arrse as anything other than a China made bat soup. I am going to be considered as unfit for Arrse’s respect. Grow up people for fooks sake this is Arrse.

When I mention Arrse to friends that served, I have yet to meet anyone who doesn't laugh at the idea. As I have also noted the Deputy chief constable of Leicestershire used to live in our village. When I mentioned Arrse to him, his advice was to leave well alone as far as the police were concerned membership of such was akin to kiddy fiddling, far right terror gangs and a shed load of low life junkies, and chancers and he was being very serious. As I noted 8 months ago, it was my intention to scoop this years Spot the Ball competition, and I think I have done extremely well in that horse race, I must be the Odds on favourite for this years championship? So far ahead of the field they might as well draw a line across the competition and award me what’s rightfully mine.

Think about it half-wits, why do so many genuine ex-service people pop up and then disappear just as quickly, once they get a flavour of the dribbling that goes on here?

Unless your brain cells have gone for a walk, this is Arrse, as the name suggests it contains a load of shoit. And those of us who post play the game based on the biggest pile of shoit, we can possibly come up with. Point me to 1 poster who hasn’t added to the game, hasn’t come out with the biggest load of bollocks known to man? It’s why we all join in the first place?

Nobody above the rank of WO1 considers Arrse to be anything other than a place to scramble one‘s brain cells with a load of flying bullshit. Rupert s Ex and still serving use Arrse as they are so befuddled by the fantasy known as a military Career, that they suck up anything painted green.

And of course that’s your problem, you take the whole thing far to seriously. Even if I were a tappet what is the likely outcome of all this? What, a load of mentally retarded navel gazers have a meltdown over my escapades as a Soldier? As far as I am concerned, nobody (apart from myself and a handful of others Dinger, and the French Mob) who posts on Arrse has served a single day in any arm of the armed forces. That’s what being a LMFer means, somebody such as yourself who was so gutless they had to send for your mummy as you had shit the pants as you crossed the recruiting office doorstep. And when she turned up she was heard to say, ‘There there dear, mummy-kins has got your cage warmed up and a nice bowl of chicken soup ready’ followed by ‘I told you, that you should have stuck with ballet lessons they are much more your cup of tea’

By by dribbling LMFers, I got paint to watch dry.
Seek help. Or start taking the medication again.
 
I may have mentioned this in another thread some time ago, but in the 1970's, I was a member of a band that played on both sides of the political and religious divide in Northern Ireland.

On one occasion we were hired to play in an obviously PIRA club off the Falls Rd in Belfast. It was obvious due to the posters on the walls and having my driving licence checked by a young thug wielding a Browning 9mm.

We were given a storage room at the top of the building to use as a changing room and being a curious type, (nosy bugger) I had a look around. I was intrigued to find the back of the room stacked to the ceiling with tied bundles of Pravda and Izvestia. They were three day old English editions.

I know little of the political affiliations of the IRA or PIRA and care less, but if the USSR was sending their newspapers, I'm sure they were sending much more.
Back in the 70s, Republican Clubs were OIRA institutions. I suspect you were in one iof them. The INLA and their political wing were also Marxist but they were not founded until 1974. On my general point, it would be absurd for the Provos to lean towards Marxism since that was one of the two main reasons they broke with Dublin.

At the Ard Fheis Jan 1970 the Provos primary argumemt was about 'abstention', but they also criticised the Dublin leadership for effectively being a 'junta' that wanted to turn Sinn Fein into a party that sought votes under the diredtion of 'moscow based communists'. They feared a communist takeover of the republican cause and swore to serve neither 'the Queen nor a Commisar'.

When the 'split' came in late 69, because Sinn Fein had been banned in the North since 1964, the OIRA decided to rename SF as Republican Clubs. Later when the ban was lifted they used 'Sinn Fein , The Workers Party' before dropping 'Sinn Fein' and using only 'The Workers Party' They then renamed the clubs as 'The Workers Party Republican Clubs.

At 'the splir' the OIRA political wing was 'Sinn Fein (Gardiner Place)' while the Provos used 'Sinn Fein (Kevin Street) to denote their different Dublin HQs. I have little doubt that your gig was in an OIRA Republican Club. As for the brochures, they killed each other for less.
 
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The Provos came into being partly (and substantially) because of their opposition to the Marxist-Leninist principles promoted by the Dublin-based 'Goulding' IRA. Later known as OIRA, their intent was to forge links with other Marxist and left wing organizations, regardless of relegious persuasion, in the belief that a united working class would eventually prevail. They also intended to abolish their abstention to taking seats in the Irish parliament.

Both of these factors were denounced by IRA veteran Jimmy Steele in a speech at Ballyglass cemetary in July 1969 - a moment in time for which many republicans initialled the beginning of what would become the PIRA/OIRA split at the end of 1969. Steele was influential in the formation of the Provos and chaired a meeting above a shop in Clonard on the 18 December 1969 which resulted in the establishment of the 'Republican News'. Whatever else can be levelled at the Provos, 'Marxist' isn't one of them.
You are correct except for the Marxist
The Provos came into being partly (and substantially) because of their opposition to the Marxist-Leninist principles promoted by the Dublin-based 'Goulding' IRA. Later known as OIRA, their intent was to forge links with other Marxist and left wing organizations, regardless of relegious persuasion, in the belief that a united working class would eventually prevail. They also intended to abolish their abstention to taking seats in the Irish parliament.

Both of these factors were denounced by IRA veteran Jimmy Steele in a speech at Ballyglass cemetary in July 1969 - a moment in time for which many republicans initialled the beginning of what would become the PIRA/OIRA split at the end of 1969. Steele was influential in the formation of the Provos and chaired a meeting above a shop in Clonard on the 18 December 1969 which resulted in the establishment of the 'Republican News'. Whatever else can be levelled at the Provos, 'Marxist' isn't one of them.

Hmm.... PIRA broke with OIRA over the latter's reluctance to mount a military campaign... not out of political ideological differences.

PIRA termed themselves Revolutionary Socialists... their aim to form a united Socialist Ireland... I use the term Marxist as... their leadership held to those political ideals - check out interviews with the likes of Rory O Brady and Sean McStiofain (John Stevenson former RAF)..... maybe I should have used the term Maoist... power coming from the barrel of the gun! Bernadette Devlin deemed the struggle one of international socialism... her civil rights movement having Marxist roots (don't they all).
Adams & Co appealed to the romantic side of the catholic community... 1916 and all that... intimating they were the true heirs to those who fought for Irish freedom... substituting nationalism for outright Marxism... in order to make the armed struggle more palatable to the Catholic hierarchy in the North, and their supporters in the USA. Still Marxism no matter how you color it... ask Jeremy Corbyn!

PIRA continued to be financed and trained by Soviet proxy
 
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The Provos came into being partly (and substantially) because of their opposition to the Marxist-Leninist principles promoted by the Dublin-based 'Goulding' IRA. Later known as OIRA, their intent was to forge links with other Marxist and left wing organizations, regardless of relegious persuasion, in the belief that a united working class would eventually prevail. They also intended to abolish their abstention to taking seats in the Irish parliament.

Both of these factors were denounced by IRA veteran Jimmy Steele in a speech at Ballyglass cemetary in July 1969 - a moment in time for which many republicans initialled the beginning of what would become the PIRA/OIRA split at the end of 1969. Steele was influential in the formation of the Provos and chaired a meeting above a shop in Clonard on the 18 December 1969 which resulted in the establishment of the 'Republican News'. Whatever else can be levelled at the Provos, 'Marxist' isn't one of them.
PIRA came into being for one reason... the Stickies refusal to enter into an armed conflict, purely and simply. Both factions... at least the hierarchy... continued to espouse Marxist ideology... although by different names. The IRPS and INLA also continued in the Marxist vein.
 
PIRA came into being for one reason... the Stickies refusal to enter into an armed conflict, purely and simply. Both factions... at least the hierarchy... continued to espouse Marxist ideology... although by different names. The IRPS and INLA also continued in the Marxist vein.
There was certainly a difference of opinion on tactics with the OIRA favouring a Marxist-Socialist political route at the expense of 'armed struggle'. However, the arguments between the two camps came to a head at the General Army Convention in December 1969 https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09546559708427434?journalCode=ftpv20 :

1594585692197.png
 
You are correct except for the Marxist



Hmm.... PIRA broke with OIRA over the latter's reluctance to mount a military campaign... not out of political ideological differences.

PIRA termed themselves Revolutionary Socialists... their aim to form a united Socialist Ireland... I use the term Marxist as... their leadership held to those political ideals - check out interviews with the likes of Rory O Brady and Sean McStiofain (John Stevenson former RAF)..... maybe I should have used the term Maoist... power coming from the barrel of the gun! Bernadette Devlin deemed the struggle one of international socialism... her civil rights movement having Marxist roots (don't they all).
Adams & Co appealed to the romantic side of the catholic community... 1916 and all that... intimating they were the true heirs to those who fought for Irish freedom... substituting nationalism for outright Marxism... in order to make the armed struggle more palatable to the Catholic hierarchy in the North, and their supporters in the USA. Still Marxism no matter how you color it... ask Jeremy Corbyn!

PIRA continued to be financed and trained by Soviet proxy
I have had a look at a lengthy interview with Ruairi O'Bradaigh and though he is undoubtedly somwhere to the left of Adams, nowhere does he imply a Marxist solution to the issue of Ireland. He speaks of socialist democracy and a plural society however. (full interview below).
Bernadette Devlin/McAliskey on the other hand was a member of the IRSP and both then and previously when a student member of Peoples Democracy exhibited Marxist tendencies. But PIRA spent more time fighting the INLA/IRSP than they did talking to them.
O'Bradaigh was a very clever man in an academic sense. His decision to break with Adams and Sinn Fein in 1986 had, ironically, the same underlying reasons as the Provos split with OIRA in 1969. That is, the removal of 'absentionism' that allowed Sinn Fein to take seats at Stormont.
The evolution of the IRA, PIRA and Sinn Fein have a long and complicated interrelationship dating back to the mid 19th Century. It is extremely difficult to dechipher the what, when and who of the thing, but extremely easy to simply lump them all together and blame all for everything. For Marxism within the IRA look to Roy Johnston, the Promethean Society, the Connolly Society and the Wolfe Tone Clubs. You will find lots on the topic, but not within PIRA.

Interview with Ruairi O'Bradaigh February 1997
Philip Ferguson: How and why did Republican Sinn Fein come into being?

Ruairi O Bradaigh (President, Republican Sinn Fein): Sinn Fein came into being in 1905 and became a definite Republican organisation in 1917. Therefore Republican Sinn Fein is 80 years old.

It was split many times by reformism and constitutionalism: in 1922 (Fine Gael), in 1926 (Fianna Fail), in 1946 (Clann na Poblachta) and 1970 (Workers Party/Democratic Left).

When the Provisionals broke the constitution at an unrepresentative ard-fheis (conference) in 1986, those who resisted this action continued the organisation as Republican Sinn Fein adhering to the existing Sinn Fein constitution.



PF: How big is RSF? What sort of people (in class terms) belong to it?

ROB: Republican Sinn Fein is organised throughout the 32 counties of Ireland. It also has cumainn (branches) in England, Scotland and Australia. There are active chapters of Cumann na Saoirse (Ireland Freedom Committee) throughout the USA and Canada.

Its membership is mainly working class in cities and towns and is drawn from the small farming community and trades people in rural areas of Ireland.

PF: Does RSF have a military wing / what is its relationship with the Continuity Army Council?

ROB: Republican Sinn Fein does not have a “military wing” nor is it the “political wing” of any other organisation. The Irish Republican Army under the control of the Continuity Army Council has – as is apparent from its statements and press interviews – the same objectives as Republican Sinn Fein: British withdrawal from Ireland and Irish national independence.

PF: Is the Continuity Army Council any more likely than the Provisionals to bring the struggle to a successful conclusion? How do you see the relationship between military and political forms of struggle?

ROB: The Provisionals have since the early 1990s ceased mentioning British withdrawal in their annual policy statement at the grave of Wolfe Tone in Bodenstown, Co. Kildare.

Their ceasefire in August 1994 was unilateral and unconditional. Now they say they will institute a new ceasefire if they are admitted to Stormont talks. These talks are based on a British agenda of restructuring English rule in Ireland. They are about a new Stormont, not about a new Ireland and British withdrawal.

Therefore the Provos have abandoned the national objective and are not likely to achieve it. They may talk about it as Fianna Fail has for 70 years.

It follows that the Continuity IRA, which is true to that objective, is far more likely to achieve it.

A BBC TV programme on February 2 last was entitled “People’s Century: War of the Flea”. It examined the guerrilla war aspect of the war against the Americans in Vietnam and against the Soviets in Afghanistan.

In both cases, of course, the guerrillas had considerable outside assistance. Four points were considered vital to success in both cases.

These were: (1) The strong motivation of the fighters; (2) The belief in victory; (3) the proper use of terrain; and (4) the mobilisation of the masses.

In the matter of points (1) and (2) the Provisional leadership stands indicted for damage done to the morale of its own Volunteers.

PF: Is it true that the Provo IRA was experiencing a loss of members to the Continuity Army Council during and after the ceasefire?

ROB: I cannot answer for the Continuity IRA but I do know that Republican Sinn Fein has been attracting former members of the Provisionals all over Ireland since the early 1990s and the dropping of the British withdrawal demand. Most have been accepted but some have not. We seek quality rather than quantity.

Incidentally the Belfast Irish language newspaper La reported on January 16 a Provisional source as saying that the ceasefire had ended a year ago in order to avoid a split in their ranks. This assertion was not denied and is generally accepted here in Ireland.

PF: What is the nature of any debate going on within the Provo IRA and how does RSF see this debate?

ROB: The Sunday Tribune of Dublin reported on February 2 that the two most aggressive Provisional military units, South Armagh and East Tyrone, had not been active at all since the ceasefire ended.

It surmised that these areas were not prepared to fight for mere admission to the Stormont talks. It also noted that more than half the 16 operations carried out recently in the Six Counties by the Provos had been in Belfast.

Further, it drew attention to the fact that only home-made equipment was being used and that there were hardly any shooting operations.

It said that the dumps sealed at the start of the ceasefire obviously remained in that condition and that such operations as were taking place were simply filling in measures until the British general election.

Republican Sinn Fein does not believe that military operations are justified for any lesser objective than British withdrawal. We have always upheld the right of the Irish people to engage in the use of controlled and disciplined force to secure such a withdrawal.

PF: If a military victory cannot be achieved over the British Army, and “pan-nationalist allies” like John Hume and John Bruton will always let you down, what is the way forward?

ROB: We do not agree that a military victory cannot be achieved over British forces. Certainly British government in much of the Six Counties – and nationalists are in the majority in most of it geographically – can be made impossible.

“Pan-nationalist allies” like the SDLP, the Dublin politicians and administrative and corporate America merely seek an absence of struggle. In the words of United Irishman Henry Joy McCracken “the rich always betray the poor”. They have a totally different agenda and any alliance with them is based on a lie.

The way forward is through a multi-faceted struggle based on the urban and rural working and small farming classes. In Britain, North America and the Antipodes the support for the Irish struggle has always been similarly based.

Cultural groupings in Celtic countries and national liberation and radical elements (anti-colonial and anti-imperialist) have always been supportive.

There may be honourable and individual exceptions to the elements listed, of course, and they too are most welcome to subscribe their talents and resources to Ireland’s centuries-old fight for freedom.

PF: How does the Protestant working class, with its traditional leadership fragmented, fit into the picture?

ROB: Republican Sinn Fein does not seek a centralised bureaucratic state. Neither does it seek an extension of the present 26-County state to all of Ireland. We parted company from the Provisionals in 1986 rather than accept that neo-colonial and collaborationist model. We want a totally New Ireland with the complete separation of church and state and the building of a pluralist society.

We urge Eire Nua, a new federation of all four provinces including a nine-county Ulster. Here, at provincial level, the people who now vote unionist would have a working majority with every power of government exercised within the province except foreign affairs, national defence and overall financing.

But the nationalists would be numerically within reach of power and strong regional and powerful district councils would, in a “patchwork” quilt of power-sharing according to local majorities, make domination by any one section over another an unhappy memory.

Common interests based on the distribution of wealth in the community would prevail.

PF: How does the south fit into the picture? How do you analyse the southern state? What can republicans offer working class people and small farmers in the south?

ROB: In the 26 Counties a tiered society exists. Up to 30% of the population are under the poverty line but are weak on organisation. Another section are struggling and barely manage to keep up while the top element are very comfortable.

Whole communities in the western half of Ireland and small farming families throughout the land are being pressurised out of existence.

Total economic restructuring is necessary with economic as well as political power vested as directly as possible in the hands of the people.

Our social and economic policy, Saol Nua – a New Way of Life – published in 1993, when unemployment in the 26 Counties topped 300,000, is based on Republican, Democratic Socialist, environmental and self-reliance principles.

PF: Where does RSF stand on social issues such as divorce, abortion, gay rights, contraception?

ROB: Our attitude on these questions has been very clear for many years. Contraception is a matter for the couple concerned. Homosexuality should be decriminalised and gays must not be discriminated against.

Civil divorce should be available. While we are opposed to abortion we are also opposed to the forces in society which impel women to seek abortion.

Incidentally, we support a full role for women in all aspects of life. We seek to have them realise their full potential and make maximum contribution to the building of the New Ireland. Too often in the past women’s role in revolutionary movements was highly valued during the actual struggle but was downgraded in the post-revolutionary phase.

This occurred both following success, eg Algeria, and after counter-revolution as in the Free State from 1922 on. In Republican Sinn Fein seven of the 23-member ard chomhairle are women. Three are officers. All are elected without any “positive discrimination”.

The first woman president of a political party in Ireland was Margaret Buckley of the Irish Women Workers Union who was president of Republican Sinn Fein from 1937-1950.

PF: While the “pan-nationalist” strategy does not seem to have produced much other than confusion and demoralisation, SF/IRA appear still committed to it. Why do you think this strategy was adopted in the first place, given that it seems to fly in the face of all the lessons of history for republicans? What is your view of where SF/IRA are going today (and tomorrow)?

ROB: The “pan-nationalist” reformist strategy of the Hume-Adams agreement in 1993 and the ceasefire of 1994 was the logical extension of the decision in 1986 to accept the 26-County state.

It was the further development of the constitutionalism entered into then and has indeed produced nothing other than confusion and demoralisation for the Provisional Movement and has impaired its capacity for struggle.

The Provisionals are being slowly but surely absorbed into the status quo, into the system, while on the other hand their revolutionary capacity is being steadily eroded.

All this is a further example of what we have seen down the years since 1922 – the “inevitability of gradualness” at work. There have been examples of former Young Irelanders and former Fenians meeting the same fate in the last century.

PF: RSF says it is committed to a “democratic socialist republic”. Can you give a short outline of what you mean by this term?

ROB: By a Democratic Socialist Republic we mean that the key industries would come into public ownership and control, whether at national, provincial or even lower level, and be administered democratically.

There would be an upper limit on the amount of land any one individual may own. A wide range of worker-owner co-operatives is visualised in agriculture, industry and the distributive trade. Indigenous industry based on local and sustainable raw materials would be favoured. Credit Unions would play an important part in this type of development.

Private enterprise would still have a role to play in the economy but it would be much smaller than today. It would have no place in key industries and state incentives would favour co-operative projects as the most socially desirable.

An independent stand will be taken in foreign policy and power blocs will be avoided. Neutrality will be essential and the Non-Aligned Movement comprising mainly former colonised peoples will be supported.

PF: How do you relate to ordinary working class people in Britain as opposed to their government?

ROB: Ordinary working class people in England, Scotland and Wales favour British government disengagement from Ireland as successive opinion polls and surveys show clearly. It is the English Establishment or ruling class which wants Ireland divided and weak and under British control.

We relate to the ordinary people on the neighbouring island by supporting genuine working class organisations and groups. This would include trade unions and especially general unions, and the immigrants’ and women’s organisations.

We seek to influence these in favour of a free, democratic and independent Ireland as well as seek their own liberation in the fullest sense.

PF: How do you see the prospects for Irish freedom as we approach the 200th anniversary of 1798? How can people in other countries best assist the cause of Irish freedom?

ROB: The bicentenary of 1798 is most important because the United Irishmen brought together “Catholic, Protestant and Dissenter under the common name of Irishman”.

The foundation of Irish Republicanism which took place in the 1790s was the modernisation of the Irish revolutionary movement in support of the democratic ideals of the American and French revolutions. No such development took place among the Scottish people – to their loss.

People in other countries – both those of Irish birth or descent and those with no ties of blood but who subscribe to the ideals of Liberty, Equality and Fraternity – can parallel the Irish struggle by supporting it in all its aspects, principally through publicity and finance.

The battle for the minds and hearts of people in support of all-Ireland democracy has a world-wide dimension, just as had the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa.
 
I have to disagree with you there. The move to "the left" from the SDLP to SF for Republicans has been matched by a move to "the right" from the UUP to the DUP. They are both (IMO) garnering votes from people who wouldn't vote for them under the previous circumstances. I would expect a loss of those votes if they were to be implicated in any violence.

SFs "success" in both polities is also a double edged sword for them as it means they actually have to be actual politicians with coherent policies rather than simply shout the odds from side-line.
In some respects you are right about the north but it is not a shift to the right as such, it is a responce from protestants when they see the demise of the SDLP and the upsurge in SF in catholic people that makes the protestants start to worry with good reason judging by previous episodes in history. As for the south nobody wants SF and they were a protest vote due to the corruption in the Irish government
 
I think RUC Toomebridge was the last terrorist attack before the second (maybe first) ceasefire? There was a badly plastered patch on the wall from an RPG strike. Thinking back now it must not of exploded on impact as the patch wasn't that large.
I had an an RPG explode on impact outside Cimic house in Al Amarah at the gate twice and as luck would have it I was fine. I am so greatfull for bad shots.:)
 
In some respects you are right about the north but it is not a shift to the right as such, it is a responce from protestants when they see the demise of the SDLP and the upsurge in SF in catholic people that makes the protestants start to worry with good reason judging by previous episodes in history. As for the south nobody wants SF and they were a protest vote due to the corruption in the Irish government
Ref the bolded bit. Thats why the references to the left and right are in quotes.
 
I have had a look at a lengthy interview with Ruairi O'Bradaigh and though he is undoubtedly somwhere to the left of Adams, nowhere does he imply a Marxist solution to the issue of Ireland. He speaks of socialist democracy and a plural society however. (full interview below).
Bernadette Devlin/McAliskey on the other hand was a member of the IRSP and both then and previously when a student member of Peoples Democracy exhibited Marxist tendencies. But PIRA spent more time fighting the INLA/IRSP than they did talking to them.
O'Bradaigh was a very clever man in an academic sense. His decision to break with Adams and Sinn Fein in 1986 had, ironically, the same underlying reasons as the Provos split with OIRA in 1969. That is, the removal of 'absentionism' that allowed Sinn Fein to take seats at Stormont.
The evolution of the IRA, PIRA and Sinn Fein have a long and complicated interrelationship dating back to the mid 19th Century. It is extremely difficult to dechipher the what, when and who of the thing, but extremely easy to simply lump them all together and blame all for everything. For Marxism within the IRA look to Roy Johnston, the Promethean Society, the Connolly Society and the Wolfe Tone Clubs. You will find lots on the topic, but not within PIRA.

Interview with Ruairi O'Bradaigh February 1997
Philip Ferguson: How and why did Republican Sinn Fein come into being?

Ruairi O Bradaigh (President, Republican Sinn Fein): Sinn Fein came into being in 1905 and became a definite Republican organisation in 1917. Therefore Republican Sinn Fein is 80 years old.

It was split many times by reformism and constitutionalism: in 1922 (Fine Gael), in 1926 (Fianna Fail), in 1946 (Clann na Poblachta) and 1970 (Workers Party/Democratic Left).

When the Provisionals broke the constitution at an unrepresentative ard-fheis (conference) in 1986, those who resisted this action continued the organisation as Republican Sinn Fein adhering to the existing Sinn Fein constitution.



PF: How big is RSF? What sort of people (in class terms) belong to it?

ROB: Republican Sinn Fein is organised throughout the 32 counties of Ireland. It also has cumainn (branches) in England, Scotland and Australia. There are active chapters of Cumann na Saoirse (Ireland Freedom Committee) throughout the USA and Canada.

Its membership is mainly working class in cities and towns and is drawn from the small farming community and trades people in rural areas of Ireland.

PF: Does RSF have a military wing / what is its relationship with the Continuity Army Council?

ROB: Republican Sinn Fein does not have a “military wing” nor is it the “political wing” of any other organisation. The Irish Republican Army under the control of the Continuity Army Council has – as is apparent from its statements and press interviews – the same objectives as Republican Sinn Fein: British withdrawal from Ireland and Irish national independence.

PF: Is the Continuity Army Council any more likely than the Provisionals to bring the struggle to a successful conclusion? How do you see the relationship between military and political forms of struggle?

ROB: The Provisionals have since the early 1990s ceased mentioning British withdrawal in their annual policy statement at the grave of Wolfe Tone in Bodenstown, Co. Kildare.

Their ceasefire in August 1994 was unilateral and unconditional. Now they say they will institute a new ceasefire if they are admitted to Stormont talks. These talks are based on a British agenda of restructuring English rule in Ireland. They are about a new Stormont, not about a new Ireland and British withdrawal.

Therefore the Provos have abandoned the national objective and are not likely to achieve it. They may talk about it as Fianna Fail has for 70 years.

It follows that the Continuity IRA, which is true to that objective, is far more likely to achieve it.

A BBC TV programme on February 2 last was entitled “People’s Century: War of the Flea”. It examined the guerrilla war aspect of the war against the Americans in Vietnam and against the Soviets in Afghanistan.

In both cases, of course, the guerrillas had considerable outside assistance. Four points were considered vital to success in both cases.

These were: (1) The strong motivation of the fighters; (2) The belief in victory; (3) the proper use of terrain; and (4) the mobilisation of the masses.

In the matter of points (1) and (2) the Provisional leadership stands indicted for damage done to the morale of its own Volunteers.

PF: Is it true that the Provo IRA was experiencing a loss of members to the Continuity Army Council during and after the ceasefire?

ROB: I cannot answer for the Continuity IRA but I do know that Republican Sinn Fein has been attracting former members of the Provisionals all over Ireland since the early 1990s and the dropping of the British withdrawal demand. Most have been accepted but some have not. We seek quality rather than quantity.

Incidentally the Belfast Irish language newspaper La reported on January 16 a Provisional source as saying that the ceasefire had ended a year ago in order to avoid a split in their ranks. This assertion was not denied and is generally accepted here in Ireland.

PF: What is the nature of any debate going on within the Provo IRA and how does RSF see this debate?

ROB: The Sunday Tribune of Dublin reported on February 2 that the two most aggressive Provisional military units, South Armagh and East Tyrone, had not been active at all since the ceasefire ended.

It surmised that these areas were not prepared to fight for mere admission to the Stormont talks. It also noted that more than half the 16 operations carried out recently in the Six Counties by the Provos had been in Belfast.

Further, it drew attention to the fact that only home-made equipment was being used and that there were hardly any shooting operations.

It said that the dumps sealed at the start of the ceasefire obviously remained in that condition and that such operations as were taking place were simply filling in measures until the British general election.

Republican Sinn Fein does not believe that military operations are justified for any lesser objective than British withdrawal. We have always upheld the right of the Irish people to engage in the use of controlled and disciplined force to secure such a withdrawal.

PF: If a military victory cannot be achieved over the British Army, and “pan-nationalist allies” like John Hume and John Bruton will always let you down, what is the way forward?

ROB: We do not agree that a military victory cannot be achieved over British forces. Certainly British government in much of the Six Counties – and nationalists are in the majority in most of it geographically – can be made impossible.

“Pan-nationalist allies” like the SDLP, the Dublin politicians and administrative and corporate America merely seek an absence of struggle. In the words of United Irishman Henry Joy McCracken “the rich always betray the poor”. They have a totally different agenda and any alliance with them is based on a lie.

The way forward is through a multi-faceted struggle based on the urban and rural working and small farming classes. In Britain, North America and the Antipodes the support for the Irish struggle has always been similarly based.

Cultural groupings in Celtic countries and national liberation and radical elements (anti-colonial and anti-imperialist) have always been supportive.

There may be honourable and individual exceptions to the elements listed, of course, and they too are most welcome to subscribe their talents and resources to Ireland’s centuries-old fight for freedom.

PF: How does the Protestant working class, with its traditional leadership fragmented, fit into the picture?

ROB: Republican Sinn Fein does not seek a centralised bureaucratic state. Neither does it seek an extension of the present 26-County state to all of Ireland. We parted company from the Provisionals in 1986 rather than accept that neo-colonial and collaborationist model. We want a totally New Ireland with the complete separation of church and state and the building of a pluralist society.

We urge Eire Nua, a new federation of all four provinces including a nine-county Ulster. Here, at provincial level, the people who now vote unionist would have a working majority with every power of government exercised within the province except foreign affairs, national defence and overall financing.

But the nationalists would be numerically within reach of power and strong regional and powerful district councils would, in a “patchwork” quilt of power-sharing according to local majorities, make domination by any one section over another an unhappy memory.

Common interests based on the distribution of wealth in the community would prevail.

PF: How does the south fit into the picture? How do you analyse the southern state? What can republicans offer working class people and small farmers in the south?

ROB: In the 26 Counties a tiered society exists. Up to 30% of the population are under the poverty line but are weak on organisation. Another section are struggling and barely manage to keep up while the top element are very comfortable.

Whole communities in the western half of Ireland and small farming families throughout the land are being pressurised out of existence.

Total economic restructuring is necessary with economic as well as political power vested as directly as possible in the hands of the people.

Our social and economic policy, Saol Nua – a New Way of Life – published in 1993, when unemployment in the 26 Counties topped 300,000, is based on Republican, Democratic Socialist, environmental and self-reliance principles.

PF: Where does RSF stand on social issues such as divorce, abortion, gay rights, contraception?

ROB: Our attitude on these questions has been very clear for many years. Contraception is a matter for the couple concerned. Homosexuality should be decriminalised and gays must not be discriminated against.

Civil divorce should be available. While we are opposed to abortion we are also opposed to the forces in society which impel women to seek abortion.

Incidentally, we support a full role for women in all aspects of life. We seek to have them realise their full potential and make maximum contribution to the building of the New Ireland. Too often in the past women’s role in revolutionary movements was highly valued during the actual struggle but was downgraded in the post-revolutionary phase.

This occurred both following success, eg Algeria, and after counter-revolution as in the Free State from 1922 on. In Republican Sinn Fein seven of the 23-member ard chomhairle are women. Three are officers. All are elected without any “positive discrimination”.

The first woman president of a political party in Ireland was Margaret Buckley of the Irish Women Workers Union who was president of Republican Sinn Fein from 1937-1950.

PF: While the “pan-nationalist” strategy does not seem to have produced much other than confusion and demoralisation, SF/IRA appear still committed to it. Why do you think this strategy was adopted in the first place, given that it seems to fly in the face of all the lessons of history for republicans? What is your view of where SF/IRA are going today (and tomorrow)?

ROB: The “pan-nationalist” reformist strategy of the Hume-Adams agreement in 1993 and the ceasefire of 1994 was the logical extension of the decision in 1986 to accept the 26-County state.

It was the further development of the constitutionalism entered into then and has indeed produced nothing other than confusion and demoralisation for the Provisional Movement and has impaired its capacity for struggle.

The Provisionals are being slowly but surely absorbed into the status quo, into the system, while on the other hand their revolutionary capacity is being steadily eroded.

All this is a further example of what we have seen down the years since 1922 – the “inevitability of gradualness” at work. There have been examples of former Young Irelanders and former Fenians meeting the same fate in the last century.

PF: RSF says it is committed to a “democratic socialist republic”. Can you give a short outline of what you mean by this term?

ROB: By a Democratic Socialist Republic we mean that the key industries would come into public ownership and control, whether at national, provincial or even lower level, and be administered democratically.

There would be an upper limit on the amount of land any one individual may own. A wide range of worker-owner co-operatives is visualised in agriculture, industry and the distributive trade. Indigenous industry based on local and sustainable raw materials would be favoured. Credit Unions would play an important part in this type of development.

Private enterprise would still have a role to play in the economy but it would be much smaller than today. It would have no place in key industries and state incentives would favour co-operative projects as the most socially desirable.

An independent stand will be taken in foreign policy and power blocs will be avoided. Neutrality will be essential and the Non-Aligned Movement comprising mainly former colonised peoples will be supported.

PF: How do you relate to ordinary working class people in Britain as opposed to their government?

ROB: Ordinary working class people in England, Scotland and Wales favour British government disengagement from Ireland as successive opinion polls and surveys show clearly. It is the English Establishment or ruling class which wants Ireland divided and weak and under British control.

We relate to the ordinary people on the neighbouring island by supporting genuine working class organisations and groups. This would include trade unions and especially general unions, and the immigrants’ and women’s organisations.

We seek to influence these in favour of a free, democratic and independent Ireland as well as seek their own liberation in the fullest sense.

PF: How do you see the prospects for Irish freedom as we approach the 200th anniversary of 1798? How can people in other countries best assist the cause of Irish freedom?

ROB: The bicentenary of 1798 is most important because the United Irishmen brought together “Catholic, Protestant and Dissenter under the common name of Irishman”.

The foundation of Irish Republicanism which took place in the 1790s was the modernisation of the Irish revolutionary movement in support of the democratic ideals of the American and French revolutions. No such development took place among the Scottish people – to their loss.

People in other countries – both those of Irish birth or descent and those with no ties of blood but who subscribe to the ideals of Liberty, Equality and Fraternity – can parallel the Irish struggle by supporting it in all its aspects, principally through publicity and finance.

The battle for the minds and hearts of people in support of all-Ireland democracy has a world-wide dimension, just as had the anti-apartheid struggle in South Africa.
The problem of the ulster protestants is that they can not trust the Irish catholics
 

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