“We will not disband.” Although on a permanent cease-fire, the RIRA say they will not be disbanding and would dump rather than surrender any weapons. By Liz Walsh. From ‘Magill’ magazine, October 1998.

The security forces are not certain as to what extent the RIRA is armed but, according to republican sources, the organisation had started to accumulate weapons in advance of the 1997 split in the Provsional IRA that led to the formation of the RIRA, which also has the capacity to manufacture home made explosives and mortars.

“We saw it coming way back, when the Provos had begun to move from ideological republicanism towards a strategic republicanism, and we made our own arrangements. Before Omagh, we were making serious headway into the Provisionals’ ranks. Volunteers were beginning to see they were led up a cul de sac by the leadership. We were the IRA. Omagh gave the Provisionals a lifeline and it allowed them to steady their ranks,” a RIRA source said.

In the weeks after Omagh, members of the Provisional IRA visited up to 60 members of the RIRA and the Sovereignty Committee ; the PIRA ‘visitors’ were unmasked and for the most part were known to their erstwhile comrades and they gave the RIRA members two weeks to disband their organisation. “There was an implicit threat of violence if we did not disband. While all this was going on, the Provo leadership was inside Stormont preaching peace. We will not be disbanding. We accept we will have prisoners to look after and we plan to keep the military structure for the foreseeable future,” said the RIRA source. Asked if he was over optimistic, given the sweeping powers of the new legislation about to be used against them, he said – “Repression has never decreased support for republicanism. It adds to it.” (MORE LATER).



The IRA of the 1980’s which resulted from the re-think was no longer the victorious ‘people’s army’ of the early 1970’s which would push the British into Belfast Lough, but a small, highly organised band of politically dedicated terrorists (sic) and guerrillas prepared to fight for years. One current Irish Republican Army Council member summed up the new strategy in the following way – “The IRA has the ability to force the British out but by that I don’t mean militarily. But we can make Ireland so unpopular an issue they will be forced to leave. Even at the lowest level the IRA has the capability to be a major de-stabilising force and we’re prepared for the long haul- 30, 40 or even 50 years if necessary.” In late 1976 the IRA’s General Headquarters Staff established a ‘think tank’ which was to examine ways of implementing this new thinking and to report back directly to the Provisional’s Army Council. The ‘think tank’ itself was dominated by two Northern radicals, both former IRA Brigade commanders recently released from jail.

In early 1977 it reported back to the Army Council and recommended that the IRA should be split in two – one part was to be responsible for fighting the war and was to consist in the main of a new 4 or 5 person ‘cell’ or active service unit and the old British Army-style organisation of companies, battalions and brigades were to be largely scrapped. The cells were to be responsible in the first instance to local IRA commands or brigades but ultimately to a new ‘Northern Command’ which would replace GHQ as the main IRA co-ordinating body.

The other IRA, the ‘open’ IRA, was to fight the political war – they were mainly IRA men and women well known to the authorities who would pass in to a new ‘Civil and Military Administration’ , and would be responsible for ‘policing’ the republican communities and for pushing Sinn Féin in a radical direction. To the acute embarrassment of the Provisionals that GHQ ‘think-tank’ report was captured by the Dublin Special Branch in December 1977 when the then Chief of Staff, Seamus Twomey, was re-arrested. That day was an especially good one for the Special Branch, as they also arrested Seamus McCollum, the man at the centre of an ambitious scheme to smuggle in an arm’s consignment from the Middle East. Earlier that month Belgian customs officials had discovered nearly six tons of Russian and French-made automatic rifles and machine pistols as well as Bren guns , explosives , mortars , rockets , rocket launchers and ammunition hidden in electrical transformers on board the MV Towerstream which had just docked from Cyprus. The ‘transformers’ were addressed to a ‘front company’ in Dublin established months earlier by Seamus McCollum. The trace back led to McCollum’s Dun Laoighaire , Dublin , flat and Special Branch surveillance netted an ‘added bonus’ in the form of Seamus Twomey , who had brazenly eluded capture since his dramatic helicopter escape from Mountjoy Prison in 1973…. (MORE LATER).


…an Chéad Dáil Éireann (the First Dáil) convened in Dublin’s Mansion House. Cathal Brugha was elected as ‘Acting President’ in place of Eamonn de Valera, who was at that time still in a British jail – he had contested a seat in the 14th December 1918 election for the Falls constituency of Belfast but lost to local ‘United Irish League’ leader, Joe Devlin, by 8,488 votes to 3,245.

All those elected in Ireland in that 1918 election were invited to the Mansion House for that first meeting but the Unionist MP’s refused, as did those elected under the banner of a so-called ‘United Irish League’(UIL) – the parliamentary nationalists (ie John Redmond’s men). In the Mansion House that day, 37 of the 73 Sinn Fein TD’s (referred to as ‘MP’s’ in Westminster) made a ‘Declaration of Independence’ (the remaining 36 Sinn Fein TD’s were still in British jails) “We, the elected representatives of the ancient Irish people in National Parliament assembled, do, in the name of the Irish nation, ratify the establishment of the Irish Republic and pledge ourselves and our people to make this declaration effective by every means at our command…we ordain that the elected representatives of the Irish people alone have power to make laws binding on the people of Ireland and that the Irish Parliament is the only parliament to which that people will give its allegiance. We solemnly declare foreign government in Ireland to be an invasion of our national right which we will never tolerate and we demand the evacuation of our country by the English garrison …”

On that same day (21st January 1919) , two RIC men were shot dead in Soloheadbeg in County Tipperary by the IRA ; the cartload of gelignite they were guarding was the target, but they wouldn’t hand it over without a fight. They lost. That IRA unit was led by Dan Breen and Seán Treacy, who had acted without approval from Michael Collins (military) or Eamonn de Valera (political); Dan Breen was called on to account for his IRA Unit’s actions on that day by his own leadership, and said that he explained to them that the target that day was the cartload of gelignite, not the RIC men who were guarding it. He later told his comrades –
“If we were to have waited for orders from Headquarters or Dáil Éireann, nothing would ever have happened. We had had enough of being pushed around and getting our men imprisoned while we remained inactive. It was high time that we did a bit of the pushing. We considered that this business of getting in and out of jail was leading us nowhere.”

The response to the shooting of the two RIC men was mixed ; Michael Collins stated – “The sooner fighting is forced and a general state of disorder created throughout the country, the better it will be for the country. Ireland is likely to get more out of a general state of disorder than from a continuance of the situation as it now stands.”

Dan Breen himself wrote – “The clergy, the public and the press had unanimously condemned our action. At this time, scarce a word would be heard in our defence. Our former friends shunned us. Even from the Irish Volunteers, who were now known as the Irish Republican Army, we got no support…….we took the action deliberately, having thought over the matter and talked it over between us. Treacy had stated to me that the only way of starting a war was to kill someone, and we wanted to start a war, so we intended to kill some of the police whom we looked upon as the foremost and most important branch of the enemy forces. The only regret that we had following the ambush was that there were only two policemen in it, instead of the six we had expected…”
The only query any Irish republican could have with the above comment would be a correction regarding who ‘started the war’ – not the men and women in the Mansion House, or Dan Breen or Seán Treacy, but those in Westminster and Whitehall in London who to this day – 96 years after the above-mentioned events – persist in interfering in Irish affairs.


‘Collins? Lennon and McCartney? Anthem? Well….that’s just a phrase I use..’

And here’s a genuine ‘phrase’ from Mr. Kenny, an ex-school teacher “It was great to see some people contacting us, saying, ‘Well, I’m not sure whether it was a mistake or not, but I seem to have got extra money in this last payment’….”

That false boast from Enda Kenny, insinuating that he’s so close to ‘his people’ that they actually ring him up to discuss what they perceive to be an over-payment of wages with him clearly gives an indication that people like him (ie over-paid professional career politicians) inhabit a ‘middle Earth’-type fairytale society where they live ‘amongst their people’ who casually chat to them about issues like that. For starters, if the likes of Kenny were to discover that you have “extra money” to play with, they’d tax you on it, as someone has to pay for their way through this world, as they themselves are not capable of earning an honest living.


‘A Sinn Fein TD (sic) revealed his brother is homeless and recovering from drug addiction during a heated debate in the Dail (sic) today….. Jonathan O’Brien said his brother could not afford to pay for his own accommodation because of rent caps and was forced to stay in hostels where people are openly taking drugs – “I have a brother who is homeless. He is a recovering heroin addict who cannot get accommodation because of the cap on rent allowance….he has been forced to go back into a hostel where drug taking happens in front of him.” Labour TD (sic) Eric Byrne responded by asking Mr O’Brien: “Why does his good family not take him home?” Mr O’Brien hit back at Mr Byrne saying: “Shut your mouth”….. (from here.)

This is the relevant section of that discussion –

‘Deputy Eric Byrne (Lab): Why does his good family not take him home?

Deputy Jonathan O’Brien (PSF): Shut your mouth.

Deputy Derek Keating (FG): A Leas-Cheann Comhairle, that is completely out of order.

Deputy Pádraig Mac Lochlainn (PSF): Deputies should have a bit of common decency.

Deputy Derek Keating: It is completely out of order for Deputy O’Brien to tell another Deputy to shut his mouth.

Deputy Eric Byrne: What would one expect from Sinn Féin?

Deputy Derek Keating: He should withdraw the remark and apologise.

Deputy Pádraig Mac Lochlainn: In the circumstances, Members should have a bit of common decency and cop themselves on. The Deputy is the first one to run to the television. He should cop himself on….’

That PSF rep was first elected to Leinster House four years ago and must have been aware that you invite ridicule if you personalise issues in that institution, especially in the manner in which he did (ie ‘My brother…’) as your ‘opponents’ spend their time in there looking for a ‘chink in your armour’ with which they believe they can ‘expose’ you as incompetent and at the same time ‘prove’ how capable and quick-witted they are. O’Brien certainly didn’t improve on his ‘shut your mouth’ remark by later describing that same Leinster House member as a “dickhead” , thus leaving himself open for more ridicule.
He would have served himself better by pointing out that ‘the dickhead that should shut his mouth’ has 30 years involvement in various drugs task forces yet doesn’t seem to be aware that home treatment is not a temporary or proper solution to the issue being discussed.

Result : Dickheads – 2 / Common Sense – 0.


…but, homosexual or not, he’s still incompetent at his job, and has attempted to defend his record and that of the political administration he is a member of in relation to hospital overcrowding, declaring that the State health ‘service’ was much worse when Fianna Fáil and the Greens were in charge. When (not ‘if’) the hospital crisis gets worse in this State, we can expect Leo to try and divert attention away from same by declaring that he is no longer a homosexual, is not incompetent at his job, to defend his record and that of the political administration he is a member of in relation to hospital overcrowding and to declare that the State health ‘service’ was much worse when Fianna Fáil and the Greens were in charge. Considering that Christine Lagarde can not only get away with the utter bullshit she deposited on our shores last Monday (19th January 2015) (‘…the Irish are the true heroes and good performers of Europe..’) but be lauded for it in the media here, who can blame Leo and his colleagues in Leinster House for being patronising towards, and taking advantage of, the gullibility of the people in this State? Sure he’d be a bigger fool not to do it!

Thanks for reading, Sharon.

About 11sixtynine

A mother of three (and a Granny!) and a political activist , living in Dublin , Ireland.
This entry was posted in History/Politics. and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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