Ireland’s Great Betrayal

British troops pose with an Irish Tricolour captured from Pro-Treaty and Anti-Treaty Irish Republican Army units following the Battle of Pettigo and Belleek in late May and early June of 1922

What date marks the end of Ireland’s War of Independence? It is a question more debated than you might think (along with the commencement of the struggle itself, with both Cork and Donegal claiming the “first shots” of the conflict in 1918, well ahead of the usual date of January 1919). If you were to follow the conventional … Continue reading

About these ads

The West’s Favoured Chop-Chop Regime

ISIS, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria

As the world, particularly the so-called Western world, looks on in outrage at the activities of the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) in the borderlands of Syria and Iraq it is worth taking a moment to examine in detail the circumstances of the spectacle of public beheadings so beloved by the extremists. I urge you to read … Continue reading

The Scandal Of The 1916 Battlefield Quarter

The GPO, Dublin, Destroyed By The British Occupation Forces, 1916

As Dublin City Council continues to debate and prevaricate over saving what is left of the capital’s 1916 Battlefield Quarter below is a timely reminder of the background to the ongoing scandal. Would the French ponder the preservation of the Bastille or the Americans the safeguarding of Bunker Hill? Of course not but here in … Continue reading

Iraq, The Graveyard Of Western Journalism

American soldiers prepare to storm a building in Iraq

With all due caution given the source this recent Q&A with Andrew MacGregor Marshall, a former senior correspondent with Reuters, featured on Russia Today deserves a far wider audience than it has got. Yes, it is RT, yes everything they say or write should be taken with a hefty pinch of salt, however…: “Andre Vitchek: Andrew, as the former head … Continue reading

Ominous Portents For The Baltic States?

Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia

Last week I had a quick look at the purchase by Latvia of surplus armoured vehicles from Britain as part of the Baltic nation’s commitments to its NATO membership. The questionable utility of the decades-old armour for modern battlefield conditions was obvious, even in the operational deployments planned for by the strategists in Brussels. However, … Continue reading

The Origins Of The Name Irish Republican Army Or IRA

Brass button from the uniform a Fenian volunteer inscribed with the letters IRA or Irish Republican Army, Canada, 1870

Back in 2011 I wrote a short piece on the history of the terms “Irish Republican Army” and “IRA“ by conducting a simple internet search through Google News to highlight some of their earliest printed occurrences. To the surprise of quite a few of my readers many of these dated to publications from the mid-1800s when the name was used by the … Continue reading

Promises Broken Are Votes Negated

British-state militias in Ireland the UDR or RIR and the RUC

  Sixteen years after the signing of the Belfast Agreement, thirteen years after the “reform” of policing, seven years after Sinn Féin took the office of deputy first minister and here we are in 2014 with the revelation that former members of the infamous Royal Ulster Constabulary are being employed by the British state to … Continue reading

Playing With The Big Boys

Merkava IV Main Battle Tank, Israeli Defence Forces

The things the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation encourages its aspirant member states to do in order to play with the big boys. In the case of Latvia, with its tiny, largely part-time military, its the purchase of second-hand armoured vehicles from Britain, the first to be delivered by 2016. Why? Well ostensibly so the Latvians can … Continue reading

Medieval Solutions For Modern Conflicts

Troops from the United States Army on patrol in Iraq

  Captain Lauren F. Serrano is an intelligence officer with the United States Marine Corp and this is from her much-lauded essay titled “Why Women Do Not Belong In The U.S. Infantry”: “Having women in an infantry unit will disrupt the infantry’s identity, motivational tactics, and camaraderie. The average infantryman is in his late teens … Continue reading

New Europe Defies Old Europe

An Chatalóin (Catalonia)

Last Thursday over 1.8 million men, women and children took to the streets of Barcelona demanding independence for Catalonia in a mass demonstration that is being heralded as the largest political rally in the history of modern Europe. Surpassing previous events huge crowds thronged the Catalan capital defying the opprobrium of the Spanish government and press. From a report by Al Jazeera: … Continue reading

Analysis Of ÓnaÉ Video

Volunteer of the Real Irish Republican Army armed with an AKM assault rifle

There was a bit of a kerfuffle in the news media over the weekend caused by the military funeral of Tony Catney, a former senior veteran of the (Provisional) Irish Republican Army. His funeral cortège in Belfast was escorted by uniformed activists, possibly Volunteers of the so-called New Irish Republican Army or NIRA through the west of … Continue reading

The Rise Of The Islamic State

6f73a-isiswithrbg-6

Reading Tom Holland’s stupendous (if controversial) history of the foundations of Islam, In the Shadow of the Sword, I was struck by how current events in the Middle East can find distant parallels in the political and religious convulsions of the sixth and seventh centuries. In particular the rise and spread of the Islamic State … Continue reading

  • blog awards ireland Nominated 2013: Best Politics, Personal Blog Categories; Best Blog Post
  • blog awards ireland

    Nominated 2014: Best News, Current Affairs, Politics, Mobile Blog Categories; Best Blog Post

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,124 other followers