Tuesday, November 25, 2014



The DUP's Gregory Campbell has said he will not be 'dictated to or deflected by terrorists' after receiving a death threat following comments he made about the Irish language.

It comes after the DUP MP reiterated comments about the Irish language during his party's annual conference at the weekend.

Mr Campbell sparked fury last month when he mocked Irish during a Stormont debate.

He said: "Curry my yoghurt can coca coalyer" - an apparent reference to the Irish phrase "go raibh maith agat, Ceann Comhairle" - thank you, Mr Speaker.

Police have now warned him of a threat to his life.

Responding, he said he would "not I will not be apologising for, or deviating from doing the right thing".

"This is not the first time that my life has been put under threat by republicans, and the challenge now is whether those who supported the threats in the past will condemn those who do it now. If they do, it is an indication that we have indeed moved on," he said.

"I will not be dictated to or deflected by terrorists. I took the opportunity today at Question Time, to reiterate my determination. Exposing those politicising the Irish language, as well as those making unrealistic political demands at the talks table is the right thing to do. How dare anyone try to suggest that it is something to be ashamed of."

A PSNI spokesman said: "We do not comment on specific threats however if we receive information that an individual may need to review their security we will take steps to inform them immediately."

East Londonderry MP Gregory Campbell jokingly referred to the jibe during a speech at the party conference on Saturday.

He told delegates it was always good to start the day with a healthy breakfast, before producing a tub of yoghurt and saying: "So I got some yoghurt today.

"And I'm looking forward to lunch, because they tell me there's some curry there."

Irish language leader Micheal O Duibh - who addressed the DUP conference - said he was dismayed by a fresh attack on the language from one of the party's MPs.

He said it felt like "one step forward, two steps back" after Gregory Campbell's remarks.

Mr Campbell also said the DUP would treat Sinn Fein's "entire wish list" - which includes calls for an Irish Language Act - like toilet paper. His latest comments have been condemned by Mr O Duibh, who took part in a panel discussion on the first day of the conference.

Mr O Duibh, who is chief executive of Comhairle na Gaelscolaiochta, the body responsible for the promotion of Irish-medium schooling, said his remarks were disrespectful.

"It is very disappointing," he told the Belfast Telegraph.

"When I was speaking at the party conference I was bringing a very positive message and I very much welcomed the invitation.

"It was a first for Irish-medium education and, most likely, a first for anybody from the Irish language background to be invited to a DUP conference.

"I gave a very warm céad míle fáilte to everybody and brought across a very strong, positive message that the Irish language and Irish-medium education is there for any parent who chooses it for their child, regardless of their social, cultural, religious or indeed linguistic background.

"To bring that positive message to the conference, and then the next day to hear the comments from Gregory Campbell felt very much like one step forward and two steps back."

Mr O Duibh said he felt let down by the latest remarks.

"In one way it was positive that I was invited to the conference," he added. "In another way it gives me an understanding of how Gregory feels or what his position is on the language.

"When you hear the party leader talk about a shared future, I wonder how he, as leader, can talk about that shared future when his party colleague feels it is okay to comment on the language in this way."

Mr Campbell appears to have made his yoghurt joke off the cuff, since it was not included in the embargoed copy of his speech released by the party press office on Saturday morning. Afterwards, DUP leader Peter Robinson defended the remarks as comedy.

However, Sinn Fein minister John O'Dowd condemned Mr Campbell and Mr Robinson.

"The insult directed by Gregory Campbell at the Irish language community from the DUP conference is appalling," the Education Minister said. "He was clearly sticking two fingers up to the Irish language community and to authority of the assembly which sanctioned him for his unacceptable behaviour in the chamber.

"I'm dismayed that Peter Robinson, in echoes of his failure to deal promptly with abuse directed at the Muslim community earlier this year, has added insult to injury by suggesting Campbell's mockery was a piece of comedy."

What they said

Micheal O Duibh: "I gave a very warm céad míle fáilte to everybody and brought across a very strong, positive message that the Irish language and Irish medium education is there for any parent who chooses it for their child.

"To bring that positive message to the conference, and then the next day to hear the comments from Gregory Campbell felt very much like one step forward and two steps back."

Peter Robinson: "This is getting tedious. If all that you have out of the whole of the party conference is to question me about that, then there are better things I could be doing.

"Lighten up will you? It's a party conference and it was a bit of comedy in the middle of it, let's get on with some real business."

Dominic Bradley, SDLP: "Mr Campbell may think that he is targeting Sinn Fein with these slurs but the Irish language community is much wider and deeper than the membership of any one political party.

"Irish language speakers, those who aspire to speak Irish and all right-minded people who respect the languages of others will be insulted and disappointed by Gregory Campbell's antics."

John O'Dowd, SF: "The insult directed by Gregory Campbell at the Irish language community from the DUP conference is appalling.

"He was clearly sticking two fingers up to the Irish language community."


Dr Micheal O Duibh is the chief executive of Comhairle na Gaelscolaiochta, the body responsible for the promotion of Irish-medium schooling. He was invited to take part in a panel discussion on the future of education on the first day of the DUP conference.

The organisation described it as "a significant and historical occasion".





The white goat stood in a little clearing closed in by a ring of whins on the hillside. Her head swayed from side to side like the slow motion of the pendulum of a great clock. The legs were a little spread, the knees bent, the sides slack, the snout grey and dry, the udder limp.
The Herd knew the white goat was in great agony. She had refused the share of bran he had brought her, had turned away from the armful of fresh ivy leaves his little daughter held out to her. He had desisted from the milking, she had moaned so continuously.
Some days before the Herd had found the animal injured on the hill; the previous night he had heard the labourers making a noise, shouting and singing, as they crossed from the tillage fields. He knew what had happened when he had seen the marks of their hob-nailed boots on her body. She was always a sensitive brute, of a breed that came from the lowlands. The sombre eyes of the Herd glowed in a smouldering passion as he stood helplessly by while the white goat swung her head from side to side.
He gathered some dry bracken and spread a bed of it near the white goat. It would be unkind to allow her to lie on the wet grass when the time came that she could no longer stand. He looked up at the sky and marked the direction of the wind. It had gone round to the west. Clouds were beginning to move across the sky. There was a vivid light behind the mountains. The air was still. It would rain in the night. He had thought for the white goat standing there in the darkness, swaying her head in agony, the bracken growing sodden at her feet, the rain beating into her eyes. It was a cold place and wind-swept. Whenever the white goat had broken her tether she had flown from it to the lowlands. He remembered how, while leading her across a field once, she had drawn back in some terror when they had come to a pool of water.
The Herd looked at his little daughter. The child had drawn some distance away, the ivy leaves fallen from her bare arms. He was conscious that some fear had made her eyes round and bright. What was it that the child feared? He guessed, and marvelled that a child should understand the strange thing that was about to happen up there on the hill. The knowledge of Death was shining instinctively in the child's eyes. She was part of the stillness and greyness that was creeping over the hillside.
"We will take the white goat to the shelter of the stable," the Herd said.
The child nodded, the fear still lingering in her eyes. He untied the tether and laid his hand on the horn of the goat. She answered to the touch, walking patiently but unsteadily beside him.
After a while the child followed, taking the other horn, gently, like her father, for she had all his understanding of and nearness to the dumb animals of the fields. They came slowly and silently. The light failed rapidly as they came down the hill. Everything was merged in a shadowy vagueness, the colour of the white goat between the two dim figures alone proclaiming itself. A kid bleated somewhere in the distance. It was the cry of a young thing for its suckle, and the Herd saw that for a moment the white goat raised her head, the instinct of her nature moving her. Then she tottered down the hill in the darkness.
When they reached the front of the stable the white goat backed painfully from the place. The Herd was puzzled for a moment. Then he saw the little pool of water in a faint glimmer before their feet. He brought the animal to one side, avoiding it, and she followed the pressure of his directing hand.
He took down a lantern that swung from the rafters of the stable and lighted it. In a corner he made a bed of fresh straw. The animal leaned over a little against the wall, and they knew she was grateful for the shelter and the support. Then the head began to sway in a weary rhythm from side to side as if the pain drove it on. Her breath quickened, broke into little pants. He noted the thin vapour that steamed from about her body. The Herd laid his hand on her snout. It was dry and red hot. He turned away leading the child by the hand, the lantern swinging from the other, throwing long yellow streaks of light about the gloom of the stable. He closed the door softly behind him.


It was late that night when the Herd got back from his rounds of the pastures. His boots soaked in the wet ground and the clothes clung to his limbs, for the rain had come down heavily. A rumble of thunder sounded over the hills as he raised the latch of his door. He felt glad he had not left the white goat tethered in the whins on the hill.
His little daughter had gone to sleep. His wife told him the child on being put to bed had wept bitterly, but refused to confess the cause of her grief. The Herd said nothing, but he knew the child had wept for the white goat. The thought of the child's emotion moved him, and he turned out of the house again, standing in the darkness and the rain. Why had they attacked the poor brute? He asked the question over and over again, but only the rain beat in his face and around him was darkness, mystery. Then he heard the voices higher up on the side of the hill, first a laugh, then some shouts and cries. A thick voice raised the refrain of a song, and it came booming through the murky atmosphere. The Herd could hear the words:
Where are the legs with which you run?
Hurroo! Hurroo!
Where are the legs with which you run?
Hurroo! Hurroo!
Where are the legs with which you run
When first you went to carry a gun?
Indeed, your dancing days are done!
Och, Johnny, I hardly knew ye!
And then came the chorus like a roar down the hills:
With drums and guns, and, guns and drum
The enemy nearly slew ye;
My darling dear, you look so queer,
Och, Johnny, I hardly knew ye!
The voices of the labourers passing from the tillage fields died away, and the rumble of thunder came down more frequently from the hills. The Herd crossed his garden, his boots sinking in the soft ground. Half way across he paused, for a loud cry had dominated the fury of the breaking storm. His ears were quick for the cries of animals in distress. He went on rapidly toward the stable.
The ground grew more sloppy and a thin stream of water came from the rim of his soft black hat, streaming down his face. He noted the flashes of lightning overhead. Through it all the cry of the white goat sounded, with that weird, vibrating "mag-gag" that was the traditional note of her race. It had a powerful appeal for the Herd. It stirred a feeling of passion within him as he hurried through the rain.
How they must have lacerated her, a poor brute chained to the sod, at the mercy of their abuse! The red row of marks along her gams, raw and terrible, sprang to his sight out of the darkness. Vengeance, vengeance! He gripped his powerful hands, opening and closing the fists. Then he was conscious of something in the storm and the darkness that robbed him of his craving for personal vengeance. All that belonged to the primitive man welled up in him. He knew that in the heart of the future there lurked a reckoning—something, somebody—that would count the tally at the appointed time. Then he had turned round the gable of the stable. He saw the ghostly white thing, shadowy in the blackness, lying prostrate before the door. He stood still, his breath drawn inward.
There was a movement in the white shape. He could discern the blurred outline of the head of the animal as she raised it up a little. There was a low moan followed by a great cry. The Herd stood still, terror in his heart. For he interpreted that cry in all the terrible inarticulate consciousness of his own being. That cry sounded in his ears like an appeal to all the generations of wronged dumb things that had ever come under the lash of the tyranny of men. It was the protest of the brute creation against humanity, and to the Herd it was a judgment. Then his eyes caught a murky gleam beside the fallen white shape, and the physical sense of things jumped back to his mind.
He remembered that in wet weather a pool of water always gathered before the stable door. He remembered that there was a glimmer of it there when he had led the white goat into the stable. He remembered how she had shown fear of it.
He stooped down over the white goat where she lay. Thin wisps of her hair floated about looking like dim wraiths against the blackness of the pool. He caught a look of the brown eyes and was aware that the udder and teats bulged up from the water. He sank down beside her, the water making a splash as his knees dropped into the place. The animal raised her head a little and with pain, for the horns seemed to weigh like lead. But it was an acknowledgment that she was conscious of his presence; then the head fell back, a gurgle sounding over one of the ears.
The Herd knew what had happened, and it was all very tragical to his mind. His wife had come out to the stable for something, and had left the door open behind her. The white goat, goaded by the growing pain, had staggered out the door, perhaps feeling some desire for the open fields in her agony. Then she had seen before the threshold of the door that which had always been a horror to her—a pool of water. The Herd could see her tottering and swaying and then falling into it with a cry, fulfilling her destiny. He wondered if he himself had the same instinct for the things that would prove fatal to him? Why was he always so nervous when he stooped to or lay upon the ground? Why did it always give him a feeling that he would be trampled under the hooves of stampeding cattle rounded up for treatment for the warble fly? He trembled as he heard the beat of hooves on the ground behind him. He peered about and for a while did not recognise the shape that moved restlessly about in the darkness. He heard the neigh of the brood mare. He knew then she had been hovering about the stable afraid to go in out of the storm. She was afraid to go in because of the thing that lay before the stable door. He heard the answering call of the young foal in the stable, and he knew that it, too, was afraid to come out even at the call of its dam. Death was about in that night of storm, and all things seemed conscious of it.
He stooped down over the white goat and worked his hands under her shoulders. He lifted her up and felt the strain all over his frame, the muscles springing tense on his arms. She was a dead weight, and he had always prided on her size. His knees dug into the puddle in the bottom of the pool as he felt the pressure on his haunches. He strained hard as he got one of his feet under him. With a quick effort he got the other foot into position and rose slowly, lifting the white form out of the pool. The shaggy hair hung from the white goat, limp and reeking, numerous thin streams of water making a little ripple as they fell. The limbs of the Herd quivered under the weight, he staggered back, his heavy boots grinding in the gravel; then he set his teeth, the limbs steadied themselves, he swayed uncertainly for a moment, then staggered across the stable door, conscious of the hammer strokes of the heart of the white goat beating against his own heart. He laid her down in the bed of straw and heard the young foal bounding out of the stable in terror. The Herd stood in the place, the sweat breaking out on his forehead, then dropping in great beads.
The white goat began to moan. The Herd was aware from the rustling of the straw that her limbs were working convulsively. He knew from the nature of her wounds that her death would be prolonged, her agonies extreme. What if he put her out of pain? It would be all over in a moment. His hand went to his pocket, feeling it on the outside. He made out the shape of the knife, but hesitated.
One of the hooves of the white goat struck him on the ankle as her limbs worked convulsively. His hand went into his pocket and closed around the weapon. He would need to be quick and sure, to have a steady hand, to make a swift movement. He allowed himself some moments to decide. Then the blade of the knife shot back with a snap.
The sound seemed to reach the white goat in all its grim significance. She struggled to her feet, moaning more loudly. The Herd began to breathe hard. He was afraid she would cry out even as she had cried out as she lay in the pool before the stable door. The terror of the things that made up that cry broke in upon the Herd. He shook with fear of it. Then he stooped swiftly, his fingers nervously feeling over the delicate course of the throat of the white goat. His hands moved a little backwards and forwards in the darkness. He felt the hot stream on his hands, then the animal fell without a sound, her horns striking against the wall. He stood over her for a moment and was conscious that his hands were wet. Then he remembered with a shudder that the whole tragedy of the night had been one of rains and pools and water and clinging damp things, of puddles and sweats and blood. Even now the knife he held in his fingers was dripping. He let it fall. It fell with a queer thud, sounding of flesh, of a dead body. It had fallen on the dead body of the white goat. He turned with a groan and made his way uncertainly for the stable door.
At the door he stood, thoughts crowding in upon him, questions beating upon his brain and giving no time for answer. Around him was darkness, mystery, Death. What right had he to thrust his hand blindly into the heart of this mystery? Who had given him the power to hasten the end, to summon Death before its time? Had not Nature her own way for counting out the hours and the minutes? Had not she, or some other power, appointed an hour for the white goat to die? She would live, even in agony, until they could bear her up no longer; and having died Nature would pass her through whatever channel her laws had ordained. Had not the white goat made her last protest against his interference when she had risen to her feet in her death agony? And if the white goat, dumb beast that she was, had suffered wrong at the hands of man, then there was, the Herd now knew, a Power deliberate and inexorable, scrupulous in its delicate adjustment of right and wrong, that would balance the account at the appointed audit.
He had an inarticulate understanding of these things as he moved from the stable door. He tripped over a barrow unseen in the darkness and fell forward on his face into the field. As he lay there he heard the thudding of hooves on the ground. He rose, dizzy and unnerved, to see the dim shapes of some cattle that had gathered down about the place from the upland. He felt the rain beating upon his face, the clothes hung dank and clammy to his limbs. His boots soaked and slopped when he stepped. A boom of thunder sounded overhead and a vivid flash of lightning lit up for an instant a great elm tree. He saw all its branches shining with water, drops glistening along a thousand stray twigs. Then the voices of the labourers returning over the hills broke in upon his ears. He heard their shouts, the snatches of their songs, their noise, all the ribaldry of men merry in their drink.
The Herd groped through the darkness for his house like a half-blind man, his arms out before him, and a sudden gust of wind that swept the hillside shrieked about the blood of the white goat that was still wet upon his hands.

Monday, November 24, 2014


Anyone who reads this Irish Blog regularly, would be aware that I have perhaps been Gerry Adams fiercest critic, and that I was raging on the child abuse issue in Ireland and within the Provisionals, long before it went mainstream. My motivation was the enormity of this particular crime and the enabling denial within Irish society for so long about this issue. What heaped further rage on the matter for me, is that this horrendous crime is still used by the British, to manipulate Irish society, through blackmail at every level of society both North and South on the Island. This for me is the ultimate crime against humanity, and all human rights activists need to consider it, as one of their primary, targets, with campaigns for transparency. It is also proof if anymore were needed, of the malign nature and effect of British interference in Ireland.

The Irish writer Oscar Wilde, wrote, "The truth is rarely pure and never simple." From personal experience of  Irish politics, I would have to reluctantly agree. What is currently, particularly galling for me, is to witness establishment political parties of Fine Gael, Labour and Fianna Fail, along with their colleagues in the British secret services, using the most vulnerable part of our society, i.e. sexually abused children, as a stick to beat the emerging challenge of an alternative party, slightly more to the left and perhaps more independent of British influence, particularly, with the possibilities of large numbers of independents, being returned at the nest election. All of these three parties, were the principal participants in the 'SYSTEMIC' sexual abuse of Irish children, since the foundation of the 'Irish Free State' as the highly expensive, official inquires reported. They were fully aware of the extent of it and had the power to end it, of that, there can be no doubt. That is the now the transparent record of Fianna Fail, Fine Gael and Labour in power in the corrupt, illusionary 'Free State of Ireland'.

When it comes to Gerry Adams and Provisional Sinn Fein, we are moving into Oscar Wilde territory, that is not simply my opinion, that is my own experience. When I worked voluntarily in the Provisional's Centre in Newry, while a very intense war by the British, was raging in the background, a few reports came to my desk there, of senior IRA persons in Dundalk being involved in child abuse. I can categorically state, that I did everything humanly possible to deal with it, other than take the 'law' into my own hands and eliminate the person personally without sufficient proof, that the reports were authentic. I also firmly believe, that every person is entitled to a jury of 12 of their peers, for any serious crime, which is not the case in British Occupied Ireland. Anything less than 12 jurors, permits all sorts of contrived abuse, in my humble opinion. This simply is still not possible in that part of Ireland, because there is still a low intensity war being fought there.

As someone who has lambasted Gerry Adams and his colleagues for years, I have to admit there are some positive aspects to Adams personally. Yes, it was the correct time to end the long war for numerous reasons, too complex to deal with here. However I disagree vehemently, with the secret contrived manner of how that was made to happen. Adams has tried to engage in proactive politics, rather than the abyss of reactionary politics, i.e. allow the British and their puppets continually set the agenda, while Irish republicans and the Left, are left to simply flounder in reactionary activity. I will give him credit for that but to return to the subject at hand, I believe people like Adams, would not be alive today, if he confronted the monster of child abuse within the Provisionals thoroughly. 

During the course of the long war, a regular feature of life for any Irish Republican, was to be taken regularly to interrogation centres like Gough Barracks or Castlereagh and be interrogated for up to a week, which now has been extended to 28 days. As a result of this activity, over the course of the years of the long war, they were able to infiltrate and manipulate their agents into the most senior positions, within the organization and engineer consent, to some British policies in Ireland and I believe they continue with this, in subsequent secret societies. That for me, was a justifiable reason to change direction and stop wasting precious life.

Interrogation in Gough Barracks was also a regular feature of my own life in Newry. One of the first things that became obvious to me, was that their primary focus, was profiling, e.g. was I dove or a hawk? Over time, it became clear, that they were well versed on most of the activity on the ground in Newry. All serious operations carried out there, were conducted from elsewhere. In my case they were more interested in profiling me and trying to cultivate a working relationship, which never happened. They seemed desperate for information about the rural area of South Armagh, which had  stronger family and community bonds, that they appeared unable to break. I wish I could say the same about the more urban, deprived area of Newry, which produced some of the finest volunteers, who were forced to operate from elsewhere. Family ties and loyalty, are a critical part of this matter but it also carries it's negatives, as in the case of child abuse, which the British exploit to the maximum.

In the period leading up to the Irish Holocaust and since, in deprived areas of desperate poverty with large Catholic families, there was often, more than 20 persons sleeping in a single small room, whether it be tenements of Dublin, rural hovels of poverty in the countryside or in the gerrymandered neighbourhoods of the sectarian north, where inevitably all sorts of deviancy evolved. The victims often commit suicide, engage in self-destructive behaviour, such as alcoholism or drug addiction in modern Ireland. Those who survive it, often identify British Imperialism and their Irish gombeen agents, as the source of their rage. I personally grew up in a very violent home, where I blamed my blueshirt father to the point of hatred, as the source of that violence but as I grew older I realized it was bit more complex than that. Ultimately though I blamed British Imperialism. As I have traveled around the World, I can see it is far from confined to the British. When I caught myself over-chastising two of my sons, while I had a hangover, I realized from own childhood experience, that the best thing I could do for my children, was walk away. This is by no means for any human being, an easy choice.

Anyway to get back to Gerry Adams and Provisional Sinn Fein, there are many careerist there, that I have no time for them at all but there are some, for whom I would have a grudging respect. To cut a long story short, I firmly believe that Adams, no more than any other member of his party, with the exception of Martin McGuinness and a few of his cronies, had the power to stop child abuse within the ranks of the IRA. I am convinced that had they tried to do so, they would have been eliminated, ruthlessly, immediately by both the British and their gombeen agents, such as the fascist blueshirts in Ireland.They know who they are, enlightened Irish people know who they are and unless there is a proper transparent, truth and reconciliation process set up in Ireland, there is a day of reckoning coming on the island with a fury, that will make Rwanda look like a twelfth of July bonfire. Personally, I will reluctantly give Adams, because of family, community and war extenuating circumstance, along with a few of his colleagues, the benefit of the doubt on this one.

Mairia Cahill, featured in the article below from the Irish Times, obviously has the same courage as her grandfather, in her backbone, to speak out about all of this. So have all of the the other victims, both female and male, who have spoken out, but from raging all of my life at my own father and his many images in Ireland, the jury is still out with me, on numerous Irish women who were aware of the endemic child rape but for various reasons, have mostly stayed silent or indeed attacked, people like Sinead O'Connor who has protested about it. I'm also aware that I am writing this from a male perspective, albeit with a strong feminine side. Only an Irish mother with strong maternal instincts, can write about this. I'm still waiting and I believe women, particularly in Irish public life, have a responsibility to do so. I was told a long time ago in the Netherlands, who themselves also have a huge problem with this, that we are as sick as our secrets. Secrecy seems to be an endemic part of contemporary Irish culture. I was also told that the truth will make me free and to a large extent it has. I am writing this on a tropical island thousands of miles away from Ireland, whether I could safely write it and stay alive in Ireland is rather doubtful. There are thousands of men and women like me, walking around Ireland, who will take their dark secrets to their graves, many of them prematurely, unless elected representatives of the people, have the courage to take responsibility and do the right thing, as opposed to their own thing. 

As I have repeated often in this blog, I am not a religious person but this dark chapter of Irish life has consumed my soul for most of my life. One person has witnessed me rant and rave about it for more than 20 years, paradoxically he is an Englishman, whom I first told when I met him, that I should shoot. His political beliefs are quite different to mine but I can say, he is my best friend.  I am glad this very long dark chapter of Irish life, has at long last seen the light of day in Ireland, but I still rage, that it is still exploited by the political parties of the Irish and British establishment, for personal and party gain. This is nothing short of criminal, bearing in mind, that they and their parties have never been brought to account by the Irish media or its injustice system, for their critical, enabling part in this most horrendous of crimes. There will be no one happier, when this meets closure but there can be no shortcuts, only the truth can make us all free. It no longer keeps me personally, away from the Sunlight of the Spirit, except on the odd bad day. It was enabled by people who understood and who stayed with me patiently through it, only because, they understood it from their own experience. I also learned that it is better to keep counsel, than speak with someone who does not understand or have a similar experience. This can be critical for those who are suicidal. I can safely say, that I have made far more mistakes in my lifetime, than the average person, and the only reason I am still around, is the quality of mercy I have been shown.

Last month, someone, whom I knew quite well from Newry and for whom I would probably have taken a bullet, was interned for political reasons and by the course of the abnormal injustice system there, may well spend the rest of his life interned. I would not take a bullet for him today, not because of anything he has done since but simply because I value life in general, including my own, far more now. Sadly, that is selfish but without it, I would not be alive to write this. I value what I write, principally because some of  these facts, are something that any young potential volunteer needs to consider, very carefully, before they commit. Like a carpenter, you can measure often but you only commit once. That is not say, that my dreams for Ireland have changed, but I believe they can be achieved intelligently, with persistence and remembering again what Mairead Farrell said. "that our head is our best weapon", with the minimum of violence. 

Merchant of Venice - Shakespeare

The quality of mercy is not strained; It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven Upon the place beneath. It is twice blest; It blesseth him that gives and him that takes: ‘T is mightiest in the mightiest; it becomes The throned monarch better than his crown: His sceptre shows the force of temporal power, The attribute to awe and majesty, Wherein doth sit the dread and fear of kings; But mercy is above this sceptred sway; It is enthronèd in the hearts of kings, It is an attribute to God himself; And earthly power doth then show likest God’s When mercy seasons justice. Therefore, Jew, Though justice be thy plea, consider this, That, in the course of justice, none of us Should see salvation: we do pray for mercy; And that same prayer doth teach us all to render The deeds of mercy. I have spoke thus much To mitigate the justice of thy plea; Which if thou follow, this strict court of Venice Must needs give sentence ‘gainst the merchant there.

Up to 30 names of alleged IRA sex offenders have now been given to gardaí, Ms Cahill claims

A file photo of Maíria Cahill arriving at the Dáil earlier this month for a debate on allegations of sexual abuse by members of the republican movement. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Tim O'Brien

Sun, Nov 23, 2014, 16:21

First published:Sun, Nov 23, 2014, 15:15

Maíria Cahill has said more than 30 names of alleged IRA sex offenders have now been given to gardaí.

Ms Cahill, who claims the IRA covered up and failed to report her alleged rape and sexual assault by a leading republican, said over the last five weeks many more people had contacted her with relevant information about alleged sexual abuse by members of the IRA.

In relation to the number of alleged abusers who details have been given to police, Ms Cahill said: “This week I spent quite a number of hours with the gardaí passing on information which I had received, for the second time in a month.

‘Trial by media’ has followed Maíria Cahill’s ‘Spotlight’ allegations
Maíria Cahill case forms backdrop to debate about abuse in North
FG TD seeks laws for IRA abuse case whistleblowers

“We are looking at probably around four times the number of names now, that Regina Doherty said in the Dáil, that she had passed on eight names to the gardaí”.

Ms Cahill said she had been contacted by other victims immediately after the BBC spotlight programme broadcast her allegations. She said it was “horrendous” people had been only confident enough to contact her on social media such as Twitterand Facebook, “but also very good that those victims did come forward” and she had “signposted them on” to both the PSNI and the gardaí and agencies could help them.

She said these were people who had similar experiences to her own “through IRA internal investigations into their sexual abuse”.

She also said some people who were not victims had come forward with information in relation to the alleged abusers.

Asked on RTE’s Saturday Night Show if she believed the abuse was “endemic”, Ms Cahill replied a lot of new information had come out about alleged IRA abuse in the last five weeks.

She compared this to the allegations of clerical sex abuse in theCatholic Church, where it “was ten years before the full extent was realised.”

Speaking about her experience Ms Cahill said the abuse and the difficulty in being brought before the IRA inquiry affected her entrance to university.

“Something had to give. Unfortunately for me the thing that gave was university. She said she began taking sleeping pills and when one woman who had been part of the IRA inquiry apologised to her for what had happened, it had been “beyond traumatic”.

She said being an abuse victim was like being somebody’s rag doll and the IRA investigation was a similar lack of control.

Ms Cahill said she went into psychiatric care for week, and was released but ultimately attempted an overdose in 2007, which she said was “rock bottom” and had to do something particularly because she was “haunted” that other children might be at risk.

“I didn’t want other people to have to go through that”. She said she didn’t regret for a second speaking out about what had happened.

Sunday, November 23, 2014


Ireland Ripe for Revolution?

Recent events have shown, that Europe is still confronted with the same problems, since the financial crisis of 2008, deepening a class divide, which has led to widening political instability all over, that has now belatedly provoked the Irish people. The dialectic around the activity surrounding the right2water crisis, has politicized the Irish people to the extent, that they not alone distrust the old power structures of church and state but they are also, no longer hostage to the corporate media. They have found their own voice and dialectic in the course of the protests, that is evolving towards the dialectics of materialism, while at the same time bonding with their common class identity. It is too late to turn the clock back now, even if the water meter issue itself were resolved. Below is an older article from Michael Werbowski, that gives a European context to what is currently happening in Ireland


Michael Werbowski

Throughout the EU, countries such as Italy, Portugal, Greece, Ireland, Spain and the latest state faced with a banking crisis or “financial meltdown”,that is Cyprus are all teetering on the edge of an economic abyss. What ails these euro zone states? It’s the draconian politics of austerity. These low or no growth remedies imposed by non-elected officials have led to the fall of governments in the so called EU “core countries” including now Italy. New actors have emerged to take on the effete elite. The Beppe Grillo political phenomenon has sent a deafeningly loud message to the establishment.

Massively, austerity with its adjunct deep social cuts, wage squeezes and endless “structural reforms”, has been rejected at the polling booth. The satirist cum politician, has not only provided some much needed comic relief to a deeply discontented populace, but he has also given vent to anger, or deep seated frustration with the out-going technocratic government of Mario Monte. In the wake of the national elections, Italy seems destined to return back to an era of short lived coalition and chronic instability which characterized the political life of the country in the post-world war years. But much more worrisome for the Brussels “commissars” is what’s happening in the Balkans. Over there we might be seeing the beginnings of a really “civil society” led, yet not so peaceful revolution.

Balkans Spring?

Do events in Bulgaria mirror those of the Arab spring? Has the violence in North Africa crossed the Mediterranean via Greece to Bulgaria? Yes it has, indeed. The confrontations between police and protestors in places like Varna and Sophia (sparked by rising energy costs, stagnant wages etc.) have rocked the region to the same extend as those in Egypt or Tunisia. And like in North Africa, the government in Sophia has fallen fast in the wake of popular unrest.

The death this week of Plamen Goranov due to self-immolation in Bulgaria is not unlike the protests actions of Mohamed Bonazizi, the Tunisian street vendor whose desperate act triggered massive demonstrations in his country, which later spread throughout the Maghreb. Whatever similarities there might be between these dramatic events in history, the suicidal yet symbolic act of one man in Varna, has ignite done more powder keg in another highly volatile part of the world which is the Balkans; an area which as we all know, was a flashpoint ofa conflict which sparked the outbreak of the First World War and also was the venue of the ex-Yugoslavia war. Both wars altered the geopolitical face of Europe forever. And will likely do so again soon if the instability there continues.

Oxymoron: EU peace prize in times of great social, economic and political unrest on the continent

Where this growing popular unrest is leading is hard to tell. But one thing seems sure: the EU is faced with widening instability not only in core states,but alsoin those on its periphery. That is the instability has spread beyond the Eurozone to the non-Eurozone states as well; or to Bulgaria, one of the newest member states but also one of its poorest. There is an explosive cocktail of dire poverty, widespread corruption and criminality known as “mafianomics” there, which characterizes boththe country and the region. This is not helpful. But then neither are the policies of the troika: EU, IMF and European Central Bank. These policies devised in Brussels, Washington and Frankfurt are destabilizing not only Mediterranean anymore, but Europe and the Balkans as well. Europe’s underbelly is on fire. How long will it take before the conflagration reaches the EU’s inner core: that is France, and then Germany?

Will the widening social protests against austerity lead to a continent wide revolution as it did in 1848? Perhaps not, but the EU is faced with permanent fragmentation into blocs composed of “haves and have not” states which is reminiscent of pre-war and pre-revolutionary Europe. An unpalatable prospect indeed, for an institution which won the Nobel peace prize in 2012

Saturday, November 22, 2014


After I left the Provisionals and Newry, I spent several months, travelling the roads of most parts of Ireland, until I came to the Island of Inisfree, off the coast of Donegal. It was a commune based on the theories of Primal Scream, which I found, was essentially about having no secrets, particularly emotional, such as jealousy, anger, love, etc.. There was no such thing as personal owner ship, which extended to sexual partners and the group operated collectively, as a self supporting Vegan community, without drugs or alcohol. It was for me a worthwhile experience but one which would not appeal to me permanently, probably because I am too selfish and self centered.

My main issue with the group and my principal reason for leaving, was that while the ethos was based on total honesty, I found the primary females, who could co-operate together as a group, far better than competitive men, were manipulate and sneaky. I wound up telling them with love, they were a shower of bitches. They would collectively as women, choose their alternating partners for the night and choose fresh ones next day.

This of course produced a reaction in the males, which would be similar to Primal Apes, who would then, beat their chests in rage and rant on at the top of their voice, to their replacement male, that he had stolen his woman, which in the context of a commune without ownership, was of course ridiculous, to the point of pure entertainment, particularly for the manipulating females, who used this to domineer the group in a very  effective manner. 

We cut our own turf, had the island to ourselves, had goats milk, cheese and baked our own bread. We had our own boat to cross to the mainland, when the weather was good. We spent a lot of the time, repairing a very old a ship, to take us to South America. To be fair to the commune, I was in a really bad space at the time and going through a personal crisis, after my political activity in the North and the breakup of my marriage. Other than this complaint, I was treated well and would recommend it to anyone, seeking an alternative experience. Below is and article about the group, followed by another on polyamory.

' Screamers '

It was a grisly end to an idyllic, idealistic childhood. And the saddest chapter yet in the story of a hippie "cult" dogged by bad luck. Tristan James, a gentle lad of 18 who had been raised in the Atlantis commune in the Colombian rainforest, was to return to Ireland, the country of his birth, for a gap year. But before he went, he wanted to say goodbye to his 17-year-old brother Brendan, who was living in the country's highlands, southwest of Bogota, with a local family. He also wanted to glimpse one more time the organic farm in the forest from which his community had been evicted by rebels the year before.
It was a grisly end to an idyllic, idealistic childhood. And the saddest chapter yet in the story of a hippie "cult" dogged by bad luck. Tristan James, a gentle lad of 18 who had been raised in the Atlantis commune in the Colombian rainforest, was to return to Ireland, the country of his birth, for a gap year. But before he went, he wanted to say goodbye to his 17-year-old brother Brendan, who was living in the country's highlands, southwest of Bogota, with a local family. He also wanted to glimpse one more time the organic farm in the forest from which his community had been evicted by rebels the year before.
Only one eyewitness has talked about the horrific events that unfolded on 9 July when Tristan and his friend, a 19-year-old called Javier Nova, stopped for a drink at the hamlet of Hoya Grande in the Incononzo region. That witness, a woman who insisted on anonymity, has since fled the area, which is racked by bloody civil war. Everyone else is simply too terrified to talk.
According to the witness, the hapless teenagers were seized by four drunken gunmen, who there and then convened a macabre mock trial in which they were accused of spying for right-wing paramilitary groups. It was a farcical scene, but what happened next was gruesome in the extreme. The woman told how the men slit Tristan's throat - and as his life ebbed away, cut off his head.
While Tristan's blood was being spilt, his friend was made to watch. Then it was his turn: Javier's throat was also slit, and he was also beheaded. The woman recalled that the gunmen yelled: "We shall kill this gringo for bringing the death squads into this area..." Afterwards the bodies were doused with petrol and set alight. No one seems to doubt the eye witness's story. The boys were never seen again and no bodies have been found.
Violence is nothing new in Colombia, where the government, with $1bn from the United States, is waging war on leftist rebel forces, who are financed in turn by vast local opium and coca crops. This year alone, 1,389 Colombians have officially been slain by leftist rebels and right-wing paramilitaries in 314 separate massacres. On forest paths, villagers regularly find bodies which bear the "necktie" signature of the right-wing militias - where a victim's tongue has been pulled through his slit throat, as a warning to peasants who support the rebels.
So horrific murder is a fact of life, and civilians are mostly too terrified to protest, even when their loved ones become victims. But Tristan's murder was different - for instead of keeping quiet, his grandmother, Jenny James, and a fellow commune member, Donegal-born Anne Barr, are demanding information from every quarter even risking their lives by appearing on television and naming the killers.
The formidable matriarch of the female-dominated commune, Jenny James has always cut her own path. It was she who, more than 20 years ago, scandalised conservative Catholic Ireland when she decamped from her Brixton commune to the quaint fishing village of Burtonport, in Donegal, to found the back-to-nature community which became notorious in 1970s Ireland for its members' sexual promiscuity and practice of "primal-scream therapy". And it was she who, 13 years ago, brought the Screamers to Colombia from Ireland. Now she has turned her energies to breaking through "the wall of terrified silence" which surrounds her grandson's murder.
Back in Ireland, meanwhile, Tristan's mother, Rebecca Garcia, and her half-sister, Louise, are trying to push the European end of their campaign for justice, helped by Mary Kelly, a long-time commune member with three sons in Colombia. In a small, cluttered flat in Cork, Garcia explained that she had not seen Tristan for two years - having returned to Ireland to help repair the commune's sailing ship, in preparation for an ambitious voyage back to Colombia, and to sell its old Burtonport headquarters. Atlantis's remaining ties with the old country were being severed and eventually the women planned to return to the rainforests.
Rebecca says that for a very brief period in July she clung to the hope that Tristan had been kidnapped, before accepting that he was dead. Commune life has made her oddly unwilling to make Tristan's murder her own special loss. "I gave birth to Tristan," she told me. "But I really feel for the kids he grew up with. The saddest thing is that Tristan's life was just beginning."
On the walls of the little Cork flat, and in the "family" photo albums, there are pictures of Tristan, clad in crimson, and the other commune kids, Louise, Alice and Katy, all pretty and blonde, performing in the commune's theatre group. Their "gringo" band has performed all over Colombia. There are also pictures of the girls - in ethereal white costumes - practising yoga in the rainforest. In another the three sisters are being drenched under a stunning Colombian waterfall. It all seems as bohemian as Isadora Duncan, as idealistic as Leonardo DiCaprio in the movie The Beach.
But Louise, who is now 19 and who returned to Ireland two years ago to study dance, says it would be wrong to think of commune life as pure pleasure, and members as dreamers. Surviving in the rainforest, she says, is tough, particularly with the violence, which has become so bad that at times the group has had to arm itself.
Louise has been upset by the way the media has focused more on the commune's Screamer past than Tristan's murder. Rebecca, though grieving, has had calls from tabloids only interested in the old "free love" days when commune-members changed partners with alarming regularity. In Ireland, Mary says, at least the community was allowed to shed its Screamer baggage long ago and move into the environmental mainstream.
"All this stuff about the 1970s," says Louise. "It was all before Tristan and I were even born." But many who remember how the Screamers lived, are fascinated by their unexpected reappearance, two decades later, at the centre of the Colombian civil war.
Jenny James was already 33 when she arrived in Donegal in September 1974 to buy a new home for "her tribe". The middle-class daughter of Communist parents, she later wrote romantically of the west of Ireland with its "warm mist, rough roads... and cottages crumbling back into the earth they came from".
This was the perfect isolated spot, she believed, in which to create the perfect community and experiment with anti-psychiatry therapies. The three-storey building in Burtonport, purchased by James for £10,000, soon rang with screams. Sleepy little Burtonport must have had its moments. But, clearly, the new neighbours took it by surprise. Atlantis House's exterior was speedily re-painted with astrological signs, ruining the village's uniform whitewash and enraging the local council. Then the visitors, many emotionally distressed, began to arrive. And with them came scandal.
Mary Kelly says the scandals - accusations of kidnap, brainwashing and sexual promiscuity - that engulfed Atlantis were exaggeration and prejudice, eagerly seized upon, and by, a conservative establishment which saw Atlantis as a threat to religious and family values. In They Call Us the Screamers, Jenny James claims it was a split between an Irish couple staying at the commune that led to a man claiming his two children had been kidnapped and his wife brainwashed by a "cult". Questions were asked in the Dail and MPs called for the "English" Atlantis community to be deported. Even the IRA got involved, issuing kneecapping threats and bomb warnings.
Journalists and film crews trekked west and were invited in to witness tearful therapy sessions. While some condemned Atlantis as completely fruity, others actually joined the commune. The group tried to get away by moving to the nearby island of Innisfree, where they lived without electricity, but the west coast Eden was already spoiled.
A new paradise had to be found. Louise bristles at the suggestion that her mother wafted down to South America, Katy still in nappies, utterly naive and unprepared. James already had a degree in South American studies and had learned the native Indian language, Quechua. And she had money in her pocket, the profits from the commune's cottages rented to holidaymakers on Innisfree.
In her book, James occasionally comes over as a Svengali, unsympathetic to Irish families who "lost" their children to the group. And those who saw Atlantis as nothing but an excuse for sexual promiscuity were treated to the details of numerous partner changes.
Mary, Rebecca and Louise come over as level-headed. But some of Atlantis's early practices now seem quite bonkers. In one memorable passage Jenny James describes how the female-dominated commune is haemorrhaging men and how she and two other women spend all morning weeping in each other's arms in Becky's room while "Becky [Rebecca, then 14] does her homework".
But as Louise points out, it was another time. Primal therapy may not been jettisoned by the group but it is no longer centre stage. Louise does not talk of therapy sessions but of environmental lobbying and of Atlantis's attempts to get Colombian peasant farmers to save the rainforest by switching from poppies and coca to organic food production.
What cannot be denied is that James has vision and stamina, and enough charisma to have kept a small core group of followers together across continents and the passing of two decades. Twenty years ago Jenny James was, however, misguidedly pushing for the "truth". After Tristan's murder, she says, that's what she still wants.
In Cork Louise says she knows the campaign her mother is waging in Colombia is dangerous. But idealism is obviously contagious. Why stay in Colombia now that the farms have been confiscated and Tristan and Javier are dead? Surely the Colombian dream, like the paradise in Donegal, is over. "Colombia is completely chaotic just now," she says. "But it is so very beautiful and we believe we have a chance of changing it into an ideal society."


Over the past few years, polyamory has become a more widely known term and practice. And perhaps inevitably, certain misconceptions and misunderstandings about what "polyamory" means have become widespread as well. It would be unfortunately difficult to say which among these misunderstandings is the most common, or the most hurtful to polyamorous folks. But there's one in particular that I'd like to discuss: the idea that "polyamory" means "committed couple who have casual partners on the side."
There has been much talk about "open marriage" and "open relationships" in recent years, with some even paradoxically dubbing non-monogamy "the new monogamy." In this open-marriage conception of non-monogamous relationships, there is still a central, committed (often legally married) couple, who allow one another to engage in purely sexual (or at least quite casual) outside relationships. Generally, any discussion about the benefits of such practice revolves around how it strengthens and/or reinvigorates the central couple in question. I want to be perfectly clear that I don't see anything wrong with strictly sexual non-monogamy so long as it's genuinely fulfilling and consensual for all involved, including the outside partners. But for those of us living in polyamorous families, it can be incredibly frustrating when people use those concepts of open marriage to make assumptions about the structure of our relationships.
Because we live in such a monogamy-centered society, it makes sense that many people can only conceive of non-monogamy in what ultimately still amounts to monogamous terms. There is a common misconception that a polyamorous relationship is really no different from an open-relationship agreement: one committed couple, with some lighthearted fun on the side. But the word "polyamory," by definition, means loving more than one. Many of us have deeply committed relationships with more than one partner, with no hierarchy among them and no core "couple" at the heart of it all. To me, this notion that there must be one more important relationship, one true love, feels a lot like people looking at same-sex couples and thinking that one person must be the "man" in the relationship and the other must be the "woman." After all, both of these misunderstandings result from people trying to graft their normative conceptions of love and relationships onto people who are partnering in non-normative ways. It seems that it is somewhat easy for many people to acknowledge that humans are capable of loving one person and still enjoying sex with others (assuming, of course, that the terms of their relationship make such behavior acceptable). But it is much harder for people to think outside the fairy-tale notion of "the one" and imagine that it might be possible to actually romantically love more than one person simultaneously.
The unfortunate result of this is that, for those of us in more than one serious and meaningful relationship, the world around us insists on viewing one of those relationships as less valid than the other, especially when one relationship happens to predate others. I have been with my husband for 17 years, legally married for 11. But I am also deeply in love with and committed to my boyfriend of two and a half years, and it hurts that people make assumptions about that relationship simply being something frivolous and recreational outside my marriage.
Another side effect of this misunderstanding is that people often wonder why we poly people need to talk openly about "what happens behind closed doors." I have heard many times that there should be no reason to disclose one's polyamorous relationships with parents, children, or the neighbors. That might seem logical if what we're talking about is strictly extramarital sexual partners. But my life with my partners isn't reducible to "what happens behind closed doors" any more than any serious, long-term relationship is. We share a home and a life; we are a family. Openly, publicly acknowledging my boyfriend as my partner is not just saying that we have sex. It's saying that, like my husband, he is my partner in every sense of the word. He loves me and supports me and respects me. He sees me at my worst and still wants to spend his life with me anyway. It would be unimaginable to me to hide the nature of our relationship, to pretend that he is merely a friend or roommate, to not have him by my side at weddings and funerals and family holiday gatherings. But this is exactly what people are expecting of me when they ask why I feel the need to be so "open" about my "private business."
Not all polyamorous people have multiple equally committed relationships, and many do designate a more central (typically live-in) relationship as "primary." But my partners and I are hardly unusual among polyamorous folks. Many share homes in configurations like ours, or as committed triads or quads or complex networks of five or more. Many have deep and lasting relationships with no cohabitation at all. To project traditional conceptions of love and commitment onto these relationships, to view them only as a slight variation on monogamy, is to deny all of the many varied ways that polyamorous people form relationships and families.
If you have polyamorous friends, relatives, or acquaintances, please don't make assumptions about their lives based on what you think all non-monogamous configurations look like. Let them tell you how they define their relationships. And if they identify multiple people as their partners, don't try to read into who is more important than whom, imagining hierarchies even if you're told there are none. Though it might not fit with how you conceptualize love, offer polyamorous relationships the same validation that you would offer any other. And remember what a common human thing it is to want to be able to tell the world -- and not be told by the world -- whom we love.

Friday, November 21, 2014


For those who wish to be in the solution, rather than in the eternal problem, we don't have to be particularly bright, to realize that the solution, is to get the sectarian hate out, and create an inclusive, Federal, Ireland. The UK taxpayers, by subsidizing their sectarian, Orange State, to the tune of 10 billion pounds sterling annually, are part of the problem, by enabling it. Please, stop enabling hate, prejudice and bigotry. When you stop subsiding them, bigots in that failed state, will start to get real, have a little humility and move into the solution. Enough of the politicians hot air. LET'S KEEP IT SIMPLE & DO IT NOW!

As someone, who regards myself as neither Protestant or Catholic and who has the utmost respect for the Protestant tradition, I realized many years ago, that one of the critical, progressive ethics of their form of Spirituality, is that they preach the ethic of taking responsibility and being self supporting, in many countries they do. Credit must go to my Protestant fellow Irishmen who first brought the progressive ethics of Republicanism from France to Ireland. It is time for you gentlemen and ladies to walk your talk, instead of prancing with supremacist pride, down the streets of the plain people of Ireland, preaching bigotry, prejudice and privilege and banging out your egoism, with your bloated, bullying, Lambeg drums. At end of the day, my reality test, comes from your God fearing New Testament, which clearly states, "by their fruits you will know them."Incidentally my best friends are Protestants.

Obviously, I cannot do all of this on my own, aside from my Higher Power, I need the help of enlightened people, who actually care. Please work the hash tag #OOsashesOff  in a creative intelligent way, to carry this simple message, particularly to the ordinary decent taxpayers, of the UK, who are being hoodwinked by politicians for centuries. Please share on Facebook and Twitter to begin with. For further details, please google the hashtags below. We can do it! 




Anonymous knocks hate sites offline as KKK ‘hoods off’ campaign continues

Hackers operating under the banner of Anonymous released another cache of information on people the group says are affiliated with the Ku Klux Klan and other white supremacist organizations.
Twitter accounts associated with the collective posted links on Tuesday morning to a document posted to PrivatePaste.com, a confidential pastebin. A pastebin is an Internet platform where users can store and display text, code configurations or other information.
In the PrivatePaste document are addresses, phone numbers, occupations and other information about Klan and white supremacist websites and the people who run and maintain them, as well as personal information about Klan members from Texas, California, Arkansas and other locations.
Anonymous poster @SouthFlCopBlock put up a link to a letter from the collective explaining to the white supremacists why Anonymous has aggressively targeted them as part of a campaign known as #OpKKK and #HoodsOff.
“Having fun riding the waves of losing twitter accounts, ddos attacks, and being caught with your zipper down?” asked the letter, which contained the names and contact information of more than a hundred alleged white supremacists.
The Anonymous campaign began when Klan chapters announced that they would be targeting protesters with “lethal force” in and around Ferguson, Missouri should riots follow a grand jury’s decision about Officer Darren Wilson. Wilson shot and killed unarmed teen Michael Brown in Ferguson last August.
Anonymous responded by “doxxing” dozens of Klan members, i.e., posting their personal information and photos on line, hence the hashtag “#HoodsOff.” Then the hacker organization seized control of the Klan’s various Twitter accounts, posting images of a lynched Klansman and taunting the original owners of the accounts.
On Tuesday, the campaign continued, with Anonymous moving beyond the Klan to target racist websites like Stormfront.org and writing, “The aim of our operation is nothing more than Cyber Warfare. Anything you upload will be taken down, anything you use to promote the KKK will be shut down. DDoS attacks have already been sent and have infiltrated your servers over the past 2 days — d0x’s have also been launched on leaders of the KKK. All information retrieved will be given to the public.”
DDoS (distributed denial-of-service) attacks are an illegal tool used by hackers to shut down a website by flooding it with so many dummy requests that the server overloads and goes offline. Anonymous is claiming to have knocked multiple Klan websites offline in several states including North Carolina, Utah and Texas, as well as a website for white supremacist group the Traditional American Knights.