Saturday, February 18, 2006

Oppose Loyalist March

Oppose Loyalist March
(from the February, 2006 edition of SAOIRSE)

SAOIRSE calls on all true Republicans to oppose
the loyalist march due to take place through the

centre of Dublin on Saturday, February 25.

This call is made for three reasons:

1) One body sponsoring the march, FAIR (Families
Acting for Innocent Relatives) claims for loyalists a

near monopoly on suffering in Ireland since the

This is not in accordance with the facts.
In the struggle for the national liberation of Ireland

over the past several decades,

over 1,000 members of the British Occupation Forces

were killed. Further, more than 1,000 innocent and

uninvolved nationalists were deliberately done to

death by loyalist death squads working in collusion

with the British forces.

The Sunday Business Post of September 4, 2005 gave the

following statistics: “Of the 698 Protestants (sic)

killed during violence in the North, 340 died at the

hands of loyalists. Since the first ceasefires in

1994, the vast majority of Protestant (sic)

victims have been killed by loyalists in internecine


It would appear then that FAIR should be marching on

the UDA and UVF headquarters in Belfast rather

than through the centre of Dublin to Leinster House.

In their progress through O’Connell Street, they will

pass by Sackville Place (by the side of Clery’s

department store) where two CIE busmen were killed by

loyalist no-warning bombs in December 1972. Will FAIR

pause at that spot and pay respects?

To highlight the fact that there is no hierarchy in

suffering, Republican Sinn Féin’s President, Ruairí Ó

Brádaigh will, before the loyalist march moves off,

lay a wreath at the end of Talbot Street – opposite

Connolly station – at the memorial to the 33 innocent

victims, both Catholic and Protestant, killed by

loyalist bombs in Dublin and Monaghan on May 17, 1974.

This will be done with respect and dignity.

Listed on page three in this issue are the names of

another 13 victims killed by loyalists south of the

Border from Donegal to Cavan, Monaghan and Louth.

British forces colluded in these deaths also, and

refused 30 years later to cooperate in inquiries into

the tragedies.

In the 26 Counties, the Department of Justice “lost”

the files relating to these victims of imperialism and

Garda Headquarters “mislaid” their files also. It

seems the lives of citizens counted for very little.

2) The second reason for opposing the march is that
Republicans stand in solidarity with the beleaguered

nationalists of the Garvaghy Road, Ardoyne, Dunloy and

other such areas that have had triumphalist loyalist

marches imposed on them forcefully year after year.

They are made witnesses of their own
The 26-County Administration, by collaborating with

this loyalist march, has effectively turned its back

on all those, north and south, who have suffered at

the hands of British-backed death squads down the


The question which has not been asked in this debate
is whether nationalist parades, of whatever kind, or

even Civil Rights marches would be allowed through the

centre of Portadown or down Belfast’s Royal Avenue?

The British forces would certainly block them.
When the British government finally leaves Ireland and

loyalist marches will no longer be a question of

supremacy of Unionists over Nationalists, then all

interests will be welcome and free to parade wherever

they choose.

Reference has been made to the Orange section of the

Irish National Tricolour. This applies to the Irish

Protestant population, in general, not all of whom are
coat-trailing Orangemen.

When he brought the Irish Tricolour from Paris and

presented it as a symbol of inclusivity to the Irish

people on April 15, 1848, Thomas Francis Meagher said:

“The White in the centre signifies a lasting truce

between the Orange and the Green, and I trust that

beneath its folds the hands of the Irish Protestant

and the Irish Catholic may be clasped in generous and

heroic brotherhood.

“If this flag is destined to fan the flames of war,

let England behold once more, upon that white centre,

the Red Hand that struck her down from the hills of


Before the loyalist march on February 25, Republican

Sinn Féin will assemble at the Parnell monument at the

top of O’Connell Street beneath a banner which bears

the immortal words of Wolfe Tone, the Father of Irish


“Unite Protestant, Catholic and Dissenter” … “To Break

the Connection with England.”

The pamphlet “An Address to the People of Ireland”...

which “makes special appeal to the people of the

Unionist persuasion” will be distributed.

The text includes an appeal “to everybody to consider

again our ÉIRE NUA programme for a four-province

federal Ireland, with optimum devolution of powers

down to community level”.

ÉIRE NUA concludes: “These proposals are not

definitive; they can and inevitably will be modified.

Sinn Féin Poblachtach would in fact welcome

constructive criticism of these proposals.”

3) The third reason to oppose this loyalist march is
clear. For some time now the 26-County State

Establishment has sought to bring the Queen of England

on an official state visit to Dublin.

Remember this crowned head claims to be “Queen of

Northern Ireland” as well as of “Great Britain”. Such

a personage making such a claim has not been seen in

Dublin for 95 years – since 1911.

The proposed loyalist march is very definitely part of

a softening-up process for an Official Visit to Dublin

by an English Queen claiming part of Ireland. The like

has not been seen since Partition in 1921.

And now, on the 90th anniversary of the 1916 Rising,

the siren voices tell Republicans to ignore this

loyalist march. If we do, they will return with even

greater insistence and tell us to ignore the state

Visit of the Queen of England.

In other words, to stay away, make no protest, and

accept finally that the Six Occupied Counties belong

to England. Is that what you want?



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