Monday, August 6, 2012

Another Irishwoman Being Murdered by London 2012








The SAS gave no warning prior to shooting. Carmen Proetta, an independent witness, told Thames Television "They [the British] didn't do anything. They just went and shot these people. That's all. They didn't say anything, they didn't scream, they didn't shout, they didn't do anything. These people were turning their heads back to see what was happening and when they saw these men had guns in their hands they put their hands up. It looked like the man was protecting the girl because he stood in front of her, but there was no chance. I mean they went to the floor immediately, they dropped."


It was the unarmed Mairead Farrell and her comrades murdered by the British, now it it is Marian Price being murdered by the British, while interned without trial, after the courts and queen of England ordered her release. As Margaret Thatcher who gave the SAS their orders said, "Murder is Murder." Marian Price has been held in solitary confinement for almost a year, force fed 400 times and interned without trial, she is a free spirit dying from British injustice in Occupied Ireland. She is close to 60 years of age and has never known freedom in her own land.




   

PRICE IN INTENSIVE CARE


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Interned political dissident Marian Price has contracted pneumonia, it has emerged.
Ms Price’s condition is described as “serious” and her family has expressed deep concern about her deteriorating physical and mental health.
In June Price was moved from Hydebank prison to a unit of Belfast City Hospital, where she was receiving treatment for severe depression. But her health has continued to fail. On Tuesday she was diagnosed with pneumonia and moved to the main hospital.
Campaigners have urged activists and supporters to help organise an international human rights campaign to pressurise the British establishment into immediately freeing Ms Price.
The prison authorities boarded up the windows of her intensive care room in hospital until the staff protested against it, said Geraldine McNamara, National PRO of Republican Sinn Féin.
“Unless immediate action is taken to save Marian’s life, she, like Giuseppe Conlon in 1980, will die a prisoner, another innocent victim of British ,” she said.
“Marian’s continued detention is yet another breach of human and civil rights by the British Establishment who continues to occupy the six north-eastern counties of Ireland.”
Her husband, Jerry McGlinchey, said: “We’re extremely worried. Marian has been in constant pain for months.
“Nobody has to agree with my wife’s politics to see this is wrong and violates her human rights.”
Ms Price was charged with encouraging support for the Real IRA last year, and subsequently interned without trial by British Direct Ruler Owen Paterson.
Mr McGlinchey said: “I’ve nothing to say to Owen Paterson, but I appeal to (Justice Minister) David Ford to show compassion and release my wife.”
Sinn Féin’s Jennifer McCann said her party had confirmed the deterioration in Marian Price’s condition.
“It is unacceptable that despite being moved from prison that she remains in custody with her historic licence still revoked,” she said.
“It has long since passed the time when the British government moved to show some genuine compassion in this case and reinstate Marion Price’s licence and allow her to return to the care of her family without any further delay.
“I will be making contact with the British government to continue to press them to release Marion Price before further damage is done to her health. 
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As to why Marian has contracted pneumonia an important clue may be found in the following extract from the diary of Bobby Sands and is taken from where he is reflecting on his situation as a prisoner. "A stretch of tarmac surrounded by barbed wire and steel is the only view from my cell window, I’m told it’s an exercise yard. I wouldn’t know. In my fourteen months in H-Block, I haven’t been allowedto walk in the fresh air. I am on ‘cellular confinement’ today. That is the three days out of every fourteen when my only possessions, three blankets and a mattress, are removed, leaving a blanket and a chamber pot. I’m left to pass the day like this, from 7.30 a.m. to 8.30 p.m. How I spend my day is determined by the weather. If it’s reasonably warm, it’s possible to sit on the floor, stare at the white walls, and passa few hours day dreaming. But otherwise I must spend my day continuously pacing the cell to prevent the cold chilling through to my bones. Even after my bedding is returned at 8.30 p.m.hours will pass before the circulation returns to my feet and legs."
    

Clonoe families launch shoot-to-kill report


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Relatives of four IRA Volunteers killed by undercover British soldiers 20 years ago have launched a report to highlight their campaign to establish how they died.
Peter Clancy, Kevin Barry O’Donnell and Sean O’Farrell, from the Coalisland area, and Patrick Vincent from Dungannon were shot dead in the grounds of St Patrick’s Church at Clonoe, County Tyrone, during the covert British military operation on February 16 1992.
They were ambushed minutes after taking part in a gun attack on nearby CoalislandRUC station during which noone was injured. All four were aged in their late teens or early twenties.
A barrage of 514 rounds were fired at the IRA unit by 12 undercover soldiers, believed to include SAS members. Eight cars, each containing two soldiers, provided back-up to the undercover troops.
Despite the passing of two decades and more than 20 preliminary hearings, a full inquest into the men’s deaths has yet to be held.
Relatives travelled to the US in March and presented the report, which has been compiled by victim-support group Relatives for Justice, to Irish and American politicians.
Six-County Justice minister David Ford and PSNI Chief Matt Baggott also received copies.
Relatives believe the soldiers ignored chances to arrest some of the IRA men prior to the planned ambush.
Hours before the shoot-out, O’Farrell was stopped at a British army checkpoint near the spot where he died.
He was allowed to continue on his journey. O’Donnell’s sister Roisin Ui Mhuiri said she and the other relatives deserve to know what happened.
“It’s about finding out the truth,” she said.
“For 20 years they have refused to tell us the truth of what happened that night.
“This is going to eat away at us until we find out the truth.
“If we stay silent, which is the easy thing to do, it means we accept what happened that night.
“It was a well-planned military operation and we believe that instead of arresting those men, which they could have done, a decision was made high up to shoot them.”
“The British government should hold up their hands so we can move forward as a community and we can heal not only as families but as a community. Instead there are families still holding all this pain and grief.”
Controversy continued after the killings when 200 mourners walked out of the funeral Mass of O’Donnell and O’Farrell at the Church of the Holy Family in Coalisland after parish priest Mgr Liam McEntegart denounced the IRA leadership.
In the aftermath of the ambush the then British ‘security’ minister, Dr Brian Mawhinney, said he had no reason to doubt that the soldiers followed proper procedures.
The report, ‘Ambush, Assassination and Impunity’, was launched at the Cornmill Heritage Centre in Coalisland on Thursday night.
“It has become apparent that state forces had exact knowledge of the IRA plan to attack the RUC station,” the report by Relatives for Justice says.
“The obvious question would, therefore, be why the state made no attempt to arrest the IRA men.
“The deployment of SAS soldiers, noted solely for their ambush and execution methods, rather than effectively securing and making arrests in accordance with international standards, adds to the concern that the aim of this operation had indeed been to kill the IRA men and not to arrest them. This was never an arrest operation.”
It demands that the full inquest should now be held and that the Public Prosecution Service should review the case.







Historic IRA realignment


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A regrouping of previously distinct breakaway IRA groups is being described as the most significant development within physical-force republicanism since the Provisional IRA split in 1997.
In a statement released yesterday [Thursday] evening, the new IRA grouping said that following extensive consultation, the three organisations “have come together within a united structure under a single leadership subservient to the constitution of the Irish Republican Army”.
A completely new command structure and army council has been established to oversee the running of the new organisation which will combine the resources of all three former groups. It is believed members of the three original groups have already been briefed on the merger.
The transition was helped by the fact that a majority of the new IRA’s leadership previously held senior roles within the Provisional IRA at various stages of that organisation’s existence.
The new organisation does not include the Continuity IRA. In addition, one or two elements which operated under the name Oglaigh na hEireann [the Irish synonym for IRA] may not have been brought into the new group, particularly in Belfast.
In a statement issued by the regrouped organisation’s army council, the IRA said it remained “committed to the full realisation of the ideals and principles enshrined in the proclamation of 1916”.
“In recent years the establishment of a free and independent Ireland has suffered set backs due to the failures among the leaders of Irish nationalism and fractures within republicanism,” it said.
“The root cause of conflict in our country is the subversion of the nation’s inalienable right to self determination and this has yet to be addressed.
“Instead the Irish people have been sold a phony peace rubber stamped by the token legislature in Stormont.”
It said the continuing British denial of Irish self-determination remained the source of the conflict.
“It is Britain, not the IRA that has chosen provocation and conflict,” it said.
“The IRA’s mandate for armed struggle derives from Britain’s denial of the fundamental right of the Irish people to national self-determination and sovereignty.
“So long as Britain persists in its denial of national and democratic rights in Ireland then the IRA will continue to assert those rights.
“The necessity of armed actions in pursuit of Irish freedom can be avoided through the removal of the British military presence from our country, the dismantling of their armed militia and declaration of an internationally observed timescale that details the dismantling of British political interference in our country.”
It is unclear what motivated the new development, but the breakaway organisations have reported a surge in support since Sinn Fein’s Martin McGuinness shook hands and greeted the English queen, Elizabeth Windsor, as part of the British royal jubilee celebrations last month.
The increased size and relative unity within the organisation will directly challenge long-standing efforts by the political establishment in the North to portray republican militants as small or “micro” groups.
For the moment, there seems no possibility of an engagement between the two, but in the future, the organisation’s new combined structure could allow a single, coherent channel of communication.
North Belfast Sinn Fein assembly member Gerry Kelly recently described the breakaway IRA groups as “small groupings” but insisted that his party had sought to engage with them.
“They have no right to carry out armed actions, the vast majority of which are directed against civilians in republican areas, in the name of Irish republicanism,” he said.
One of the group’s involved in the merger, Republican Action Against Drugs, has operated a controversial vigilante campaign against criminals within the nationalist community in Derry. However, last month it began to target the PSNI, triggering a wave of raids and searches in which dozens of homes were ransacked, most recently that of the Sinn Fein Mayor, Kevin Campbell.
Other units or groupings involved in the merger include one which carried out an attack which killed a member of the PSNI in County Tyrone last year, as well as others which have used the name Oglaigh na hEireann, or simply ‘the IRA’.
While the full extent of the regrouping has yet to be confirmed, it has been reported that the new IRA has membership ‘nationwide’.
Meanwhile, in an apparently separate development, the Continuity IRA (CIRA) says it has expelled several members and has a new leadership.
A statement issued in Dublin said those acting in a criminal manner and using the name of the CIRA would be subject to “military action”.
The group said it remains determined to continue its armed campaign in the north. The CIRA has claimed responsibility for several attacks in recent years, including one in 2009 in which a member of the PSNI was killed.
There has as yet been no direct response to the development by Sinn Fein or other IRA groups.


Smithwick lawyers ‘bewildered and alarmed’ by PSNI secrecy


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Five intelligence documents were deliberately withheld from the Smithwick Tribunal by the PSNI police, the force has said, deepening the mystery over a profoundly murky incident from 1989.
The ongoing tribunal at Dublin Castle was set up to investigate claims that the Provisional IRA received assistance from a member of the 26-County Garda police in 1989. It was announced following unionist demands for a ‘balance’ to nationalist calls for inquiries into collusion between the British Crown forces and loyalist death squads north of the border.
Two senior members of the police (then RUC) died when they were ambushed as they crossed the border en route to Dundalk Garda station, allegedly afer inside information was passed to the IRA.
The revelation that the PSNI had withheld the documents was described as a matter of “great concern” by lawyers at the tribunal on Wednesday. Lawyers for the two families involved said it now appeared the PSNI may be hiding even more documents from the inquiry, while lawyers for Owen Corrigan, a Garda member who had been accused of assisting the IRA, said the PSNI had very belatedly produced evidence which cleared his client.
John McBurney, solicitor for the Breen family, said there was now “a truly bewildering and alarming array of collusion pointers”.
The PSNI has provided only “summaries” of the five intelligence documents, the originals of which they said were being withheld for “reasons of national security”.
Four of the five “summaries” related to reports that a garda in Dundalk passed information to the IRA. The fifth said a Dundalk garda named as Jim Lane had repeatedly warned of inappropriate relationships between members of the IRA and Dundalk sergeants.
While the first two documents made reference to “a detective” member of the Garda in Dundalk who was said to be passing information to the IRA, the summary provided said the unnamed detective officer in question was not involved in [or revealed to] the Smithwick Tribunal.
Jim O’Callaghan SC, for Owen Corrigan, said this was “exculpatory” information about his client’s alleged involvement with the IRA, and the PSNI had decided, at least initially, not to share it.
Asked if he was prepared to apologise to Mr Corrigan, the PSNI representative replied: “A decision was taken to not release this intelligence.”
He added that he was “not in a position to tell you who made that decision, the circumstances or the context in which that or those decisions were taken. And I’d be speculating beyond that.”


The merger of physical force republicans


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A different take on last week’s IRA announcement, by socialist republican Tommy McKearney.
Organisations with strong centralised and hierarchal structures, especially the conviction driven, are usually prone to splitting or the breaking away of factions. Often this occurs at periods of significant political development or societal transformation when direction-changing decisions are required. This happens in religion, in sport and with unending regularity in the world of militant Irish republicanism. Three of the largest parties in the present Irish parliament, for example, had their origins in bitter divisions within the country’s republican milieu. Such a history, therefore, makes the news of a merging of certain forces within the present day republican underground, an interesting and indeed surprising development.
A small number of journalists were briefed on Thursday 26th July that three strands of what is sometimes referred to as the ‘physical force’ element of Irish republicanism had amalgamated. The Real IRA (best known to British readers for carrying out the 1998 Omagh bombing), a vigilante group called Republican Action Against Drugs and a low profile group of armed republicans still calling themselves ‘the IRA’ have united under the, hardly original, title of the Irish Republican Army. In its communique to the press, the group repeated its commitment to militarism when it spoke of the ‘... necessity of armed struggle in the pursuit of Irish freedom ...’
In spite of its newsworthiness, this development should be kept in perspective. In the first instance, this new IRA group will be confronted with a challenge experienced by every revolutionary organisation; that of maintaining security and secrecy in the face of energetic surveillance by the state. There is little doubt that this merger will simplify MI5’s task of monitoring and foiling the new group’s activities.
Secondly, there are two other bodies, still calling themselves the IRA that remains outside this merger. Therefore the fractious and divided nature of armed Irish republicanism remains as poisonous and debilitating as ever. The particular school of Irish republicanism represented in this new group is often more certain of what it opposes rather than what it stands for. This makes it difficult for them to build the type of broad support base necessary to influence the political process.
Most pertinent of all, though, is the fact that the new formation is unlikely to change significantly the balance of forces within Northern Ireland. Trying to estimate membership strength for the various militant groups is difficult because the level and depth of support can fluctuate widely depending on the time and circumstances. One of the anomalies of the current situation is that while Sinn Féin voters are strongly opposed to further armed action, many are unwilling for historical reasons to cooperate with the authorities. Acceptance for all aspects of policing remains ambiguous within most republican circles.
Nevertheless, an overwhelming majority of people in Northern Ireland are opposed to any resumption of the violent battle of the final quarter century of the 20thcentury. Every election since the Good Friday Agreement of 1998 has returned, from within the wider republican constituency, an overwhelming majority in favour of ending armed conflict and an equally strong rejection of those indicating any intention of recommencing insurrection. While there is no mechanical correlation between electoral support and ability or capacity to carry out direct action, the presiding officer’s count provides its own message. When people are unwilling to vote in secret for an insurrectionist candidate, they are unlikely to endure the unavoidable hardships and risks of war against the state. In practical terms there is insufficient water in which armed radicals can swim in Northern Ireland of the present day.
This low-key assessment notwithstanding; there is a message to be taken from a coming together of previously separate entities. It is rare for divisions in republican Ireland to be repaired or for groups to coalesce in this fashion. The significance of what has happened may not lie, therefore, in the new group’s potential for increased military capacity (and that is questionable hypothesis by any assessment) but in the fact that there is a new strategy in play and the process is towards unity rather than remaining separate.
Bear in mind that all is not well in Northern Ireland. Global recession is embedding economic and social hardship in areas that have experienced little improvement in their level of material prosperity over the last two decades. Sectarian divisions remain at a toxic level, especially in working class districts. Local devolved government performs a basic function of any parliament in that it is a substitute for civil war, yet it hardly makes any other obvious difference in the population’s day to day lives. Ominously, this new IRA is concentrated in the very areas where deprivation is most acute.
There is, in a nutshell, a space for dissenting voices to question the status quo and Irish republicanism is, after all, more a response to material conditions than it is an aspiration to a form of government. Five years ago a sense of estrangement manifested itself in France with youths burning property in the suburbs. Last year something similar happened in Britain when rioting broke out across urban centres.
Protest in Ireland sometimes follows an indigenous pattern and therein lurks the one great unknown factor in this latest ‘new departure’. Is this a huddling of desperate men determined to hang together rather than hang separately or is it an indication, even subconsciously, of a societal change that is encouraging direction-changing decisions?







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