<img src="Updated each Monday , Wednesday and Friday . The ‘1169…’ crew will be heading off on our annual holiday this Friday , July 14th , for about two weeks . ‘Junior’ considers himself “too old” to accompany old fogies like us but , if he finds time for the computer at all , it will be on ‘Bebo/My Space’ or the like . So whatever chance there is of him minding the house , there is absolutely no chance of him ‘minding’ the blog ! We should be back in late July , or possibly sooner – depends on the funds!
<img src="PADDY COONEY’S ARMY …….
Not since the earliest days of the State has the role of the Irish Army (sic) been under such intense scrutiny . And not since the war years has it had such a forceful political master as Patrick Mark Cooney .
From ‘The Phoenix’ magazine , 3 February 1984 .
It was as Fine Gael spokesman on Justice that Paddy Cooney uttered those immortal words that few now will credit as having emanated from the mouth of the man – speaking on the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill , which allowed for a statement of belief by a Garda Chief Superintendent that a person was a member of an ‘illegal organisation’ to be adduced in ‘evidence’ , Cooney said –
” …..how can he (the State Minister for Justice) come into this Parliament (ie Leinster House) and ask it to support a Bill the like of which can only be found on the statute books of South Africa ? There is a limit to the measures a democracy is entitled to adopt in order to protect itself , and that limit is exceeded in this bill . It is repugnant to the basic principles of justice and liberty . ” In one short speech , Paddy Cooney had become ‘the Great White Liberal Hope of the Seventies’ !
Less than three months later Paddy Cooney was appointed (FS) Minister for Justice by the incoming Fine Gael/Labour coalition administration , largely as a concession to the ‘liberal wing’ of the party ! Only then did the people discover the real Paddy Cooney…….
The text of the press communique issued by the Catholic bishops after their two-day conference read as follows – “…..it became clear that far more attention should be paid to voices of moderation in all sections of the Northern Ireland (sic) community . ” This was clear in its call for acceptance of the status quo in the North of Ireland , including the RUC and their shoot-to-kill tactics , and was absolute in its rejection of those who daily experience that status quo , and that ‘moderation’ , and all the poverty , repression and death it entails .
The reaction of loyalists has been as predictable as that of the SDLP and the Catholic hierarchy , the shoot-to-kill policy answering the demands they have continually made for SAS-style assassination campaigns . Orange Order leader Thomas Passmore said –
” I call upon the (British) Secretary of State to remove the political shackles from our security forces . It is now high time for a review of the whole ‘yellow card’ procedure… “ , while DUP leader Ian Paisley called for shoot-to-kill actions to be ” ….repeated across the province. ” But whether Paisley or other anti-Republicans spoke in favour of it or not , the Westminster shoot-to-kill policy was nothing new to Northern nationalists…….
In late 1972 , Eoghan Harris wrote an unsigned article in the ‘United Irishman’ newspaper entitled – ” What Is Imperialism? ” , one of the most lucid expositions ever penned of the classic anti-imperialist position in Ireland . Two years later he wrote a document , ‘ From Civil Rights To Class Politics’ , which argued that the Sunningdale Agreement had solved the civil-rights question * and that it was now time to polarise Irish workers against Irish capitalism . ( * ‘1169…’ Comment – as far as Irish republicans are concerned , the “question” regarding British jurisdiction over any part of this isle has nothing to do with “civil rights” . It is not , as Republican Sinn Fein has repeatedly stated , a case of saying to Westminster ‘stay if you want , just treat us better…’ . However – those that fumble in the greasy till , for Sterling or Euro , would accept a so-called “civil rights” ‘solution’ . Irish republicans , on the other hand , are aware that such a ‘solution’ would simply postpone the conflict and curse future generations into dealing with this same issue .)
In 1977 , Eoghan Harris co-authored ‘The Irish Industrial Revolution’ in which he argued that Irish under-development was the result , not of British suppression , but of the unwillingness of Irish capitalists to industrialise . The more orthodox marxists of the Communist Party of Ireland tore this thesis to shreds in a pamphlet issued in reply , but it remained the theoretical guideline of the Workers Party until recently . The result of this approach is to identify virtually all things ethnic as ‘reactionary’ and ‘obscurantist’ : thus , Harris would see Irish republican ideology , the Catholic Church and rural “backwardness” as the three pillars of reaction in Ireland today .
In this scenario , foreign multinational company’s are the agency of industrialisation and therefore , ultimately , the creators of a strong industrial working class . That such an ideology should pass itself off as ‘marxist’ is a reflection on the dearth of a marxist tradition in Ireland rather than a tribute to Eoghan Harris as a ‘socialist theoretician’ – but the Workers Party loved it …….