On the 10th October, 1969, ‘The Hunt Report’ recommended that the RUC (which had been formed on the 5th April 1922) should be changed into an unarmed force, that the ‘B Specials’ (the ‘Ulster Special Constabulary’) should be disbanded and a new reserve force be established, to be known as the ‘Ulster Defence Regiment’. The RUC name was given to the then-existing RIC force on the 1st June 1922 in an attempted sleight-of-hand manoeuvre to present an existing pro-British paramilitary force as a ‘new entity’ and that ‘new entity’ – the RUC – was, in turn, amalgamated into the ‘new’ PSNI on the 4th November 2001 – 19 years ago on this date.

This was another tweaking of the name and uniform of a paramilitary outfit (and they’ve done it again!), as the ‘police force’ in that part of Ireland are still administered by Westminster and are as anti-republican as they were when they bore the ‘RIC’ name, and maintain the same structure and objective as when they were known by that latter name.

The more gullible in Leinster House and elsewhere among us (although they are well salaried to be so or, at least, to give the impression that they are that gullible) profess themselves convinced that a new day has dawned, ignoring the fact that the shadow in the room is caused by an elephant that they themselves have encouraged.


From ‘The United Irishman’ newspaper, June, 1955.

However, the electors of Mid-Ulster and Fermanagh-South Tyrone realised quite clearly that no matter what English law says or does, a vote for Philip Clarke and Tom Mitchell was a vote for the unity and freedom of Ireland and an end to British rule in Ireland. Although no other Sinn Féin representatives were elected in the other constituencies, the electors voted with the same clear realisation – that a vote for Sinn Féin was a vote for a united and free Ireland.

The political situation in the North of Ireland has for many years been confused by a general classification of all Catholics as ‘nationalists’ and all Protestants as ‘unionists’. This has been demonstrated to be false in this election ; we interpet ‘nationalist’ to mean one who believes in the freedom and unity of the nation and separated from English influence and control, and ‘unionist’ to mean one who believes in Ireland remaining subject to English power and control and domination by the English Parliament at Westminster.

Previous elections in the North of Ireland have been contested on a purely sectarian issue – Catholic versus Protestant. The ‘status quo’ was never seriously challenged and the ‘castle catholics’ could with safety vote for the ‘nationalist’ candidate. The issue in this election was really serious – England’s ‘right’ to rule in Ireland was challenged and only the brave and the Irish voted for Ireland.

It now remains for the people in the 26 Counties to follow the lead given by the North : vote Sinn Féin at every opportunity, organise branches of Sinn Féin in every area in Ireland. A united people cannot be defeated. (* ‘1169’ comment – if you “vote/organise” for that grouping now, you will be doing so to benefit an organisation that has accepted/works with the Free State and Westminster administrations in Ireland, and will be prolonging the British military and political presence in this country and/or shoring-up the capitalist political situation that exists here.)

(END of ‘British Occupation Challenged’ ; NEXT – ‘The West’s Awake’, from the same source.)


Judith Ward (pictured), an ‘IRA activist’, was arraigned on the 3rd October 1974 at Wakefield Crown Court, West Yorkshire, England, on an indictment containing 15 counts : Count 1: causing an explosion likely to endanger life or property on the 10th September 1973, at Euston Station, Count 2: a similar count relating to the explosion on the motorcoach on the M62 on the 4th February 1974, Counts 3-14: twelve counts of murder relating to each of the persons killed in the explosion on the motorcoach and Count 15: causing an explosion as before on February 12, 1974, at the National Defence College at Latimer.

She pleaded “not guilty” to all counts but, on the 4th November 1974 – 46 years ago on this date – she was convicted on all counts, by a majority of 10 to two on Count 1 and unanimously on all the others. She was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment on Count 1, 20 years’ imprisonment concurrently on Count 2, life imprisonment for the murder Counts 3-14 and to 10 years on Count 15, to be served consecutively to the 20 years on Count 2, making a determinate sentence of 30 years.

It took eighteen years of campaigning to have her conviction quashed, which it was on the 11th May 1992 and it transpired that she had changed her ‘confession’ several times and that the police and the prosecution selected various parts of each ‘confession’ to assemble a version which they felt comfortable with! One of the main pieces of forensic evidence against her was the alleged presence of traces of nitroglycerine on her hands, in her caravan and in her bag. Thin layer chromatography and the Griess test were used to establish the presence of nitroglycerine but later evidence showed that positive results using these methods could be obtained with materials innocently picked up from, for instance, shoe polish, and that several of the forensic scientists involved had either withheld evidence or exaggerated its importance.

Her book, ‘Ambushed – My Story’ makes for interesting reading and allows the reader to draw comparisons with the injustices suffered by the Maguire Seven, the Birmingham Six and the Guildford Four ; a total of 18 innocent people, including Judith Ward (13 men, 3 women and two children) who, between them, spent a total of 216 years in prison. Anne Maguire, a mother of 5 children, was menstruating heavily and denied all toiletries for a week, and was beaten senseless and Carol Richardson, who didn’t even know she was pregnant, miscarried in Brixton Prison days after her arrest. Pat O’Neill, who had minutes before entered the Maguires house to arrange for a baby-sitter when the police arrived, was told by a cop to swear that he saw a big cardboard box on Maguires table or else he would be done, but he refused to lie – he served eleven years. On his release, he found his marriage was broken beyond repair and that his six children had left the family home.

How many more Irish children will have to ‘leave the family home’ before the British eventually give a date for their political and military withdrawal from Ireland, because the situation as it now (and still) exists here is that their very presence continues to be objected to by Irish republicans and continues to give rise to unrest. And, if our history is to be used as a yardstick, that will always be the case.


Confidence in the Garda Siochana continues to erode as more incidents of questionable Garda ‘evidence’ emerge.

By Sandra Mara.

From ‘The Magill Annual’, 2002.

As Pat Byrne’s tenure as Garda Commissioner draws to a close, he could be forgiven for wishing he could fast-forward his retirement and hand over the poisoned chalice, particularly in the light of Abbeylara, allegations of garda corruption in Donegal, the Dean Lyons affair and numerous other ‘occasions of sin’ for the guardians of law and order in Ireland (sic).

In the latest round of events, the legal team acting for Donegal publican Frank McBrearty and his family (which now numbers five barristers and two solicitors) secured leave from the High Court to take an action designed to compel the Garda Commissioner to fully investigate allegations of perjury by five of his officers in District Court proceedings against the McBreartys between December 1998 and April 1999.

Martin Giblin SC, for the McBrearty family, instructed by Ken Smyth of Binchy’s Solicitors, told Mr Justice O’Neill that his clients were the subject of intense garda attention following the death of Raphoe man Richie Barron in 1996. Mr Barron was found by two local men on a roadway close to his home in the early hours of 14th October 1996 ; seriously injured and lying in a pool of blood, Mr Barron was taken to hospital by ambulance but subsequently died from his injuries… (MORE LATER.)


From ‘The United Irishman’ newspaper, November 1954.

A plea for a return to Sinn Féin principles of self-reliance was made at the Irish Club in Eaton Square last night by Professor John Busteed, who lectured on the future of Ireland.

Suggesting that emigration should be regarded as a test of the efficiency of the national economy (sic), Professor Busteed said that, on present figures, out of every 1,000 boys aged 14 now, 350 would have left the country in twenty years, and out of every 1,000 girls, 390 would have left.

That was a phenomenon that existed nowhere else in the world ; Denmark, for instance, had three times the national (sic) income of Ireland and had no emigration problem. When the Free State was set up there were 1,220,000 at work, of whom over half were employed in agriculture. Today the total was 1,200,000, and the number engaged in agriculture had declined from 650,000 to 480,000. (From an ‘Irish Independent’ London letter, 27-9-1954.)

(END of ‘Return to Sinn Féin’ ; NEXT – ‘British Garrisons And The Ban’, from the same source.)


…we won’t be posting our usual contribution, and probably won’t be in a position to post anything at all, next Wednesday, 11th November 2020. This coming weekend (Saturday/Sunday 7th/8th) is spoke for already with a 650-ticket raffle to be run for the Dublin Executive of Sinn Féin Poblachtach in a different venue than usual, due to the Covid 19 issue, and in a slightly different format.

But, closed venues and social distancing etc or not, work on this gig began yesterday, Tuesday 3rd November 2020, and the paperwork ‘autopsy’ into it will be held on Monday, 9th, so – between the three of us – we’re booked up solid with our ‘pay-the-bills/day-job’ work and the work on the raffle, and Ard Fheis paperwork, even though the Ard Fheis itself has been defered. Then it’s straight on to the December 2020 Cabhair raffle and the Cabhair Christmas Day Swim and loads of other stuff which one committee or another will no doubt be looking to have done!

But it’s all for a good Cause and we don’t mind helping out. Check back here for us on Wednesday 18th November 2020 ; sure you’d never know what it is that we’ll be givin’ out about!

Thanks for reading – Sharon and the ‘1169’ team.

…and we’re still in ‘Lockdown 2’ in this State, but most citizens are less compliant than they were during the first ‘Lockdown’ and, in our opinion, with good reason ; State politicians grant themselves exemptions from Covid rules for golf society/business meetings and for attending other such business/political meetings in the State and abroad but insist that the rest of us comply! They provide faulty PPE and declare that clothes are not essential items (!), resulting in State ‘officialdom’ losing more of whatever ‘authority’ it had left. And they continue to pay themselves their full salary while offering the rest of us a State payment which is, for most people, inadequate to meet their needs. There is general unrest and resentment here as a result, and that unrest and resentment is growing…

About 11sixtynine

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