MONDAY , 26 MARCH 2007 .


The recent strike by BBC journalists over the ‘REAL LIVES’ programme and the dispute at RTE over the interview with NORAID representative MARTIN GALVIN have focused world attention on Sinn Fein once again .MICHAEL KELLY spoke to Sinn Fein president GERRY ADAMS at interviews in Dublin and Belfast , conducted over the course of the past month .
From ‘IN DUBLIN’ magazine, August 1985 .

MICHAEL KELLY : ” Community work is one of the ways in which you have been building up your vote in Dublin . Why did Sinn Fein choose this method ? ”

GERRY ADAMS : ” First of all , it means that the party which puts forward the candidate has to be in the area helping the people and not just at election time . Secondly , it’s easy enough to take short-cuts and to get involved in street opportunism , latching yourself onto a tenants’ association and getting your picture in the paper and it might look genuine to people outside the area , but people in the area will know it isn’t .

Hopefully it will enable us to put our views on the national question across and then on the British presence and to ‘republicanise’ the community . I think that there’s a difference between a principled involvement in working with the people and opportunistically exploiting what’s going on for electoral purposes . “

From ‘MAGILL’ magazine, August 1983 .

Conversation turns from the RUC to court room procedure : the solicitors want to save cross examination until the formal trial next year . There’s no point giving Raymond Gilmour a ‘dry run’ now , they argue – ‘You’re just giving the RUC time to prepare him..’ . The RUC already know all the dirt there is to know about him , comes the counter argument – ‘ You can be sure they’ve broken him already , and remoulded him . Why give them more time . Throw stuff at him now , while he’s still vulnerable…’

But is he vulnerable , they wonder then ? This is not the Raymond Gilmour some of them knew . Is that how they brainwashed people in Korea , in Vietnam ? ” Never mind Gilmour , ” said one woman , ” … look how the solicitors are brainwashed . A lot of money , for appearing in court , and they’ll uphold any system . They should have withdrawn from the courts long ago . You wouldn’t find informers being tolerated in an English system .”

Those words fall like stones on some hearts – one woman present has a son in the dock , and a solicitor son among defence counsel . The son in the dock is not allowed to sit beside his wife , of eighteen months , also charged . She got bail because she was pregnant , the child having since been born . If her husband is convicted of the killing of which he has been accused , her child-bearing years will be over by the time he gets out . Assuming her body is not destroyed in Armagh Jail, where she will probably be sent if Gilmour is believed . The young woman’s mother keeps vigil in court , from her wheelchair…….

<img src="GLOSSARY OF THE LEFT IN IRELAND : FROM 1960 TO 1983…….
These notes attempt to record the left-wing organisations which have existed in Ireland since 1960 . No attempt has been made to record purely local organisations outside Dublin and Belfast , or microscopic groups which never reached double figures . The larger organisations have been presented in more detail .
From ‘GRALTON’ magazine, 1983.
John Goodwillie.
(NOTE : Links in the following article are as accurate as possible – not all the groups mentioned left a discernible ‘footprint’ .)

IRISH WORKERS’GROUP (Mark 1) : This group changed its name from the Irish Communist Group in 1965 . An organisation in the Trotskyist tradition , it ceased to function in 1968 following the secession of the ‘League for a Workers’ Republic’, but many of its members were already involved in the Labour Party or the Young Socialist Alliance.

IRISH WORKERS’ GROUP (Mark 2) : Formed in 1976 following a breakaway from the Socialist Workers’ Movement in the direction of a more rigorous adherence to Trotskyist doctrine . This group had close relations with the British Workers’ Power Group.

IRISH WORKERS’ LEAGUE: Formed in 1948 when the Communist Party Of Ireland had divided on a North/South basis in 1941 . It changed its name to the Irish Workers’ Party in 1962 .

About 11sixtynine

A mother of three (and a Granny!) and a political activist , living in Dublin , Ireland.
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