Monthly Archives: December 2019
Frank Keane is one of the living people I most admire and respect. The questions for this interview were written by myself and Mick Healy, and Mick conducted the actual interview. Mick has done more than anyone to retrieve the story of Saor Eire, which disbanded in 1973, and its significance and relevance.
Posted in 21st century republicanism and socialism, Border Campaign/Operation Harvest, British strategy, Civil rights movement, Democratic rights - general, Economy and workers' resistance, Fianna Fail, Fine Gael, General revolutionary history, Historiography and historical texts, Imperialism (generally), Interviews, Ireland and British revolution, Irish politics today, Officials, Partition, Political education and theory, Prisoners - past, Provos - then and now, Repression and resistance in 1970s and 1980s, Repression in 26-county state, Republicanism 1960s, Republicanism post-1900, Revolutionary figures, Saor Eire, Workers rights
Commemoration in 1997, marking the 25th anniversary of the death of Irish revolutionary fighter Máirín Keegan. Frank Keane is the main speaker.
Posted in Civil rights movement, Commemorations, Economy and workers' resistance, General revolutionary history, Historiography and historical texts, Imperialism (generally), Internationalism, Ireland and British revolution, Mairin Keegan, Partition, Political education and theory, Public events - Ireland, Repression and resistance in 1970s and 1980s, Repression in 26-county state, Republicanism 1960s, Revolutionary figures, six counties, twenty-six counties, Women, Women in republican history
The article below first appeared in the July 29, 1922 issue of The Workers Republic, the paper of the newly-established Communist Party of Ireland. The civil war had begun just a month earlier. The CPI aligned with the anti-Treaty IRA and agitated for it to adopt a social programme pointing to a workers’ republic, not just a republic.
Sean McLoughlin was actually the senior surviving commandant of the Easter Rising of 1916. On the Friday evening, as the Rising was drawing to a close, the 21-year-old had so impressed James Connolly and other leaders that he was appointed overall military commander. This was done due to the incapacitation of the badly-wounded Connolly, the original commandant-general of all the insurrectionary forces. McLoughlin then led the break-out from the GPO and into Moore Street.
McLoughlin later worked closely with Roddy Connolly in founding the original, short-lived CPI and was active in workers’ struggles during the civil war, including workplace occupations and the formation of soviets.
I have broken up some of the longer original paragraphs. Also the article referred to both the Labour Party and labour (the working class with capital ‘L’; I have put the latter in lower case to differentiate them.
On the political side, it should be noted that the true perfidy of the Irish Labour Party was not grasped yet, although they had gone along with the Treaty – something which should have given the game away. But a section of revolutionaries still saw them as being a party which Connolly had helped found and this produced illusions.
The text I used is taken from the appendices to Charlie McGuire’s Sean McLoughlin: Ireland’s Forgotten Revolutionary (London: Merlin, 2011).
by Sean McLoughlin
The Republicans have only one object, a purely sentimental one, as far as the masses are concerned – the establishing of a Republic, separated completely from Britain. This is supported by the Communists and the advanced labour elements, in so far as it is a revolutionary step, in helping to smash British imperialism, but the masses are not swayed by these questions of high politics. They are moved by economic pressures, and will not respond to sentimental appeals, no matter how impassioned they may be, And the masses are correct.
In the first place they are tired of war. In the second, they see that, no matter who wins, they will still be slaves grinding out their lives for wages and ruled with a rod of iron by bosses and landlords, and they cannot summon up enthusiasm enough to enable them to fight on behalf of wage-slavery.
The Republicans Read the rest of this entry →
Posted in British strategy, Counter-revolution/civil war period, Economy and workers' resistance, Free State in 1920s, 1930s and 1940s, General revolutionary history, Historiography and historical texts, Labour Party, Political education and theory, Repression in 26-county state, Republicanism post-1900, Revolutionary figures, Sean McLoughlin, Secret police, Social conditions, Toadyism, Trade unions, Workers rights