<img src=" STREET TALK …….
The name Tony Gregory was virtually unheard of outside Dublin before 1982 when he was elected to Leinster House as an independent in Dublin Central , a post he still holds . He made the headlines with the famous ‘Gregory Deal’ in the same year when , in return for his support , the Fianna Fail government pumped £76 million into the redevelopment of inner city housing .
By Sean Ó Donáile .
From ‘USI NEWS’ , February 1989.
Tony Gregory on the Provisional IRA :
” I think the Provisionals are irrelevant for the reason that they have no real grasp of the socio-economic realities in Ireland today . If they had carried out a military struggle against military targets (‘1169…’ Comment : Is Mr. Gregory not aware that campaigns were carried out against economic and military targets ?) they would have a great deal more support . Enniskillen pales in comparison to some of their atrocities committed over the last twenty years . But when you condemn the Provisionals you ignore the root causes of their existence which is the military occupation of the six counties , and a struggle is inevitable because of that .”
On Emigration – a ‘safety valve’ ? :
From the infamous ‘coffin ships’ right up to the present day the Irish have left in droves (‘1169…’ Comment – …not always voluntarily..) and a ‘Paddy’ can be found in every corner of the globe , be it ‘The National’ in Kilburn, the ‘Corrib’ in Boston or in the West Indies where they were brought in Cromwellian times to pick crops and were called ‘The White Niggers’. Tony Gregory believes that emigration has , and is , been used as a safety valve :
” The huge emigration of the 1950’s was used as such . It prevented any sort of radical political development in the country , because the people worst affected left . It has made the country more inherently conservative and now , not only are people leaving , but they are being encouraged to leave by politicians and their like .”
[END of ‘STREET TALK’]
(Next : ‘ A Manifesto – Britain Must Withdraw Her Forces’ , from 1958)
<img src=" A QUESTION OF LIBERATION …….
Feminists and anti-imperialists in Ireland have often regarded each other’s struggles with misunderstanding , mutual suspicion , and sometimes outright rejection . What then is the relationship between them ? Eibhlin Ni Gabhann surveys the emergence of women’s liberation groups in Belfast and Dublin over the past decade or so , and some of the questions they have faced .
From ‘IRIS’ magazine , November 1983.
Irish women have been brought up to model themselves on a certain image of ‘the ideal woman’ : a mixture of the passive and docile , and Pearse’s Mother- stoic in suffering : ” Lord , thou art hard on mothers : we suffer in their coming and their going , and tho’ I grudge them not , I weary , weary , of the long sorrow…”
A woman’s role was in the background , raising sons for Ireland , yet the ‘Irish Mammy’ was a figure of fun . Marriage or the nunnery were for years the only real choices , and yet women who did devote their lives to the family were then caricatured . Added to this were the blatant anti-woman laws of the Free State , which denied women rights to property or indeed any identity but that of chattel .
When in 1970 an ‘Irish Women’s Liberation Group’ was formed in Dublin , as in Belfast , they were mainly middle-class , journalists and students . Four of its prominent members – Nell McCafferty, Mary Maher, Mary Kenny and June Levine – were all working as journalists on Free State daily newspapers . As in Belfast , too , the resistance struggle in the North was left unmentioned – Republicanism was dismissed as ‘male politics’ , while women involved in the Republican Movement were seen as ‘fighting a man’s war…….’
Saoirse Mullen said she was ‘so frightened by the incident’ she asked her boyfriend Michael Murphy to stay in the house until she found other accommodation : ” Each night I used to put the chest of drawers up against the door to avoid a repetition of this assault , ” she said . Thomas Gear , the landlord , then moved out of the house and into a hotel when one of the other tenants , Marguerite Beggan , threatened to report the attack on Saoirse Mullen .
A week after the incident , Saoirse Mullen was in the house at 8.15pm , when the front door opened and three men wearing baseball caps appeared . One of them was holding a sheet of paper containing the names of the occupants – this man was later identified as Gary Adams, of Muirhevnamore Estate in Dundalk , County Louth . ” Right , I’ve been given orders to clear this house , “ he said . Turning to Saoirse Mullen , he said ” Get your stuff packed , you’re leaving now.”
She said that she felt scared and threatened as the men were verbally aggressive . She asked for more time to get her things together , as she had furniture and belongings to remove . Warning her not to telephone anyone , Gary Adams replied – ” Right . 11pm we’ll be back , you better be gone by then.” Unknown to the men , however , they had been ‘tailed’ going to the house by Special Branch detectives who received a tip-off that the INLA was planning a ‘job’ in Dublin that night . The Branch watched Gary Adams , Damien Bond and Thomas Murray as they drove to a house at Whitehorn Close , Beaumont , owned by Bart O’ Connor , an associate of Damien Bond’s . There they took baseball caps , dark jackets and a lump hammer out of the boot of Gary Adam’s car . All four got into a blue van driven by Bart O’ Connor and headed for Castleknock , making several ‘u-turns’ along the way , apparently to avoid surveillance…….