Vice News On Poland’s Paramilitary Groups And Militias

Vice News’ German team has a short documentary on the growth of private militias in Poland, non-state groupings that can legally organise and train their memberships in conventional and non-conventional warfare. Euroviews gave a good overview of the phenomenon back in April: “During the last year, more and more Poles have turned to camouflage clothes and fake guns. They sign up… Read More Vice News On Poland’s Paramilitary Groups And Militias

Provisional IRA Not On A War Footing

Two days have passed since I criticised the risible scaremongering amongst sections of the domestic and UK press, as well as various opportunist politicians, following contradictory statements by PSNI officers investigating the related murders of Gerard Davison in May and Kevin McGuigan this August, both in the city of Belfast. In particular confused claims over the alleged involvement of former or current volunteers of the (Provisional)… Read More Provisional IRA Not On A War Footing

The Reality Of Cold War Politics In The North-East Of Ireland

From 1995 to 2001 an organisation calling itself Direct Action Against Drugs, or DAAD, was involved in a series of “vigilante-style” attacks on a number of criminals and underworld gangs in the north-east of Ireland. The various assaults, involving the use of guns, bombs and so-called “punishment beatings”, took place against the background of the Irish-British… Read More The Reality Of Cold War Politics In The North-East Of Ireland

John Redmond MP The Gun-Loving German-Shooting Pacifist

Just after midnight on the 15th of August 1915 several armed and masked men forced their way into the London and North Western Railway Depot in the North Wall district of Dublin and proceeded to load four large crates from one of the warehouses onto a number of motor vehicles before disappearing into the early morning darkness. Press reports over the following days claimed that… Read More John Redmond MP The Gun-Loving German-Shooting Pacifist

An Interview With The Parents Of Peace Activist Rachel Corrie

Back in August of 2013 the US-based current affairs website, MintPress News, gained considerable publicity when a report by its correspondents allegedly exonerated the Assad regime in Damascus of any involvement in three chemical weapon attacks that had taken place in the Ghouta district of the Syrian capital. Instead the MintPress team blamed the machinations of Saudi Arabia and the… Read More An Interview With The Parents Of Peace Activist Rachel Corrie

American Journalism Fails The Irish Test Once Again

Kurt Eichenwald is a veteran American journalist of some thirty years standing who has specialised in everything from corporate malfeasance to defence issues for publications as diverse as the New York Times and Vanity Fair. For the last year he has been authoring a series of investigatory or analytical pieces for the current affairs magazine Newsweek, some of… Read More American Journalism Fails The Irish Test Once Again

Hiroshima And Nagasaki 70 Years On

By any rational appraisal the deployment of nuclear weapons against the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki on the 6th and 9th of August 1945 clearly fell under the definition of crimes against humanity. Over one hundred thousand were killed and hundreds of thousands more were injured or otherwise effected by the long-lasting physical and psychological effects of the bombings. Combating and… Read More Hiroshima And Nagasaki 70 Years On

Citizen Journalism And Bellingcat

If you are interested in what is commonly known as “citizen journalism“, the internet-invigorated tradition of independent news reporting and analyses coming from individuals and alternative media groups, can I recommend that you visit the website Bellingcat. Launched in 2014 by Elliot Higgins, the once anonymous writer behind the influential Brown Moses blog, Bellingcat focuses on the use of open source information, gathered primarily… Read More Citizen Journalism And Bellingcat

Lá Lúghnasa Agus Diarmaid Ó Donnabháin Rossa

A belated happy Lá Lúghnasa to one and all as we celebrate the traditional harvest festival marking the commencement of the third quarter of the year in the indigenous calendars of Ireland and the Gaelic world. Unfortunately my day has as been consumed with rather more contemporary work, leaving me little time for festivities. However it’s pleasing to note… Read More Lá Lúghnasa Agus Diarmaid Ó Donnabháin Rossa

Vice News On The Fianna Éireann And RSF

The pioneering US current affairs website Vice News has just published a short documentary examining the Fianna Éireann, the youth wing of Republican Sinn Féin. The latter group broke away from mainstream (Provisional) Sinn Féin in 1986 and has devolved into more of a political tradition amongst certain families and communities than a nation-wide organisation. RSF… Read More Vice News On The Fianna Éireann And RSF

The Hooded Men, British Torture-Centres In Ireland

The Irish Times has a laudably detailed article examining the historic issue of the “Hooded Men”: Irish citizens detained by the British and unionist authorities in the north-east of Ireland during the period of internment – imprisonment without charge or trial – in the early 1970s. Unlike some two thousand others who were carted off to… Read More The Hooded Men, British Torture-Centres In Ireland

British Spies In The IRA, Myth Versus Reality

Just a quick heads-up for those who have access to the series “Twentieth Century British History” from the Oxford Journals. A recent edition features an article titled “The Influence of Informers and Agents on Provisional Irish Republican Army Military Strategy and British Counter-Insurgency Strategy, 1976–94” by Thomas Leahy of King’s College, London. In it the researcher pretty… Read More British Spies In The IRA, Myth Versus Reality

The INLA Show Of Strength In The City Of Derry

      Following the recent death of Peggy O’Hara, the veteran political activist in the city of Derry, the Irish Republican Socialist Party and the Irish National Liberation Army – the IRSP’s largely quiescent military wing – staged an unusual public show of strength at her funeral, drawing much media attention and commentary. O’Hara was the mother of the late Patsy O’Hara, the INLA leader who died… Read More The INLA Show Of Strength In The City Of Derry

Questioning The Media Myth Of The Moderate Orange Order

Another July 12th round of rioting, street disturbances, house-burnings and general displays of sectarianism, racism and straight-forward fascism. Of course some people will protest that such incidences are in the minority, and make the news headlines precisely because of their relative rarity. The vast majority of events around the “Twelfth”, they argue, pass off without violence or confrontation… Read More Questioning The Media Myth Of The Moderate Orange Order

A Sordid Tale Of British Gunmen, Bombers And Policemen

In his final exploration of the evidence sourced for the RTÉ television documentary “Collusion”, a feature-length programme examining the links between the UK military and intelligence services garrisoned in the north-east of Ireland during the period of the “Long War” and their allies in the so-called “Loyalist” terrorist gangs, veteran Irish journalist Ed Moloney begins with a story that coincidentally illustrates the easy relationship that existed between the… Read More A Sordid Tale Of British Gunmen, Bombers And Policemen

Shoot-To-Kill, Britain’s Summary Executions And Assassinations In Ireland

Sometimes I do wonder if the dozens of Irish and British journalists who spent most of their careers loftily dismissing the evidence of Britain’s criminal counter-insurgency war in Ireland as “republican propaganda” have any regrets now that the veracity of those allegations has been proven to be correct? Or do those newspaper columnists, press editors and… Read More Shoot-To-Kill, Britain’s Summary Executions And Assassinations In Ireland

The Reorganisation Of The IRA In The Early 1970s

Irish journalist and author Ed Moloney, now resident in New York, has an interesting article over on his Broken Elbow blog examining possible evidence of the reorganisation of the (Provisional) Irish Republican Army into a “cellular” command and control structure primarily based upon Active Service Units (ASUs) at a date much earlier than previously thought. “Way… Read More The Reorganisation Of The IRA In The Early 1970s