Saturday, 29 March 2014



Minister for Injustice Ireland Shatter defended Israel’s brutal 2009 invasion of Gaza. He opposed the “freedom flotillas” organized in 2010 and 2011 to breach the Israeli blockade of the already impoverished Gaza strip, although each of the aid expeditions included a ship from Ireland .He has opposed visas for members of organizations hostile to Israeli policies, and resoundingly condemned calls for the Irish to boycott performances in Israel as “cultural fascism.”

Shatter has not merely parroted Israel’s justifications for oppressive policies aimed at preserving Israel as a Jewish state for a Jewish people, he has in effect served as a second Israeli ambassador to Ireland, functioning without the diplomatic constraints of the former.

We may take it, then, that Ireland’s Jewish minister of Injustice is moved by something other than an abstract sense of fairness that, however misguidedly, invites the world’s “wretched refuse” (as a very influential tribune of indiscriminate immigration once called it) to Ireland’s shores. Seen in the light of his dedication to a dogma that the United Nations General Assembly once declared racist, Shatter’s promotion of Third World immigration, as well as his long career as a lawyer promoting birth control, abortion, and gay marriage—takes on a more sinister hue, as do such recent initiatives as his condemning Ireland’s national television network for failing to depict today’s “intercultural Ireland” rather than the homogeneous Irish people of decades past.

In other words, Shatter has at best dual loyalties—but his double standard on Israel and Ireland would seem to indicate that his loyalty is primarily, if not exclusively, to the Zionist state rather than the Emerald Isle. What factor his Jewish loyalties play in promoting an immigration that is at most minimally Jewish, yet increasingly non-White, to the land of his birth remains an unanswered, though provocative, question. Nevertheless, Shatter’s attitudes are entirely in sync with those of the organized Jewish diaspora communities throughout the West. As often noted in TOO (see also here, p. 241ff), Jewish attitudes on immigration in the West are best explained as Jewish ethnic strategizing motivated by hostility toward the traditional people and culture of the West because of historical anti-Semitism (e.g., Shatter’s construction of Ireland’s role in the Holocaust) combined with fear that ethnically homogeneous populations may eventually rise up against Jews.

Alan Shatter is also Ireland’s minister of defence. In that role, he has announced that Ireland will continue to buy arms from Israel. As one of his critics has observed, “It is not unusual for a Defence Minister to be steeped in nationalism, but for the ‘nation’ in question to be a foreign state, and a rogue state at that, must be unprecedented.”

It’s hard to imagine the mirror image of Alan Shatter in Israel. Just imagine one Alan O’Slattery, devoted to promoting non-Jewish immigration to the Zionist state and putting the military and diplomatic needs of Ireland above those of the nation he serves, wielding comparable power in Israel!

But it’s not so difficult to imagine Alan Shatter finding a ministerial role in yet another country. In the eyes of John McCain and Lindsay Graham, Shatter might well be eminently more qualified to serve as U.S. Secretary of Defense than Chuck Hagel. After all, Hagel has the wrong loyalties, and Shatter has the right ones.


Labour Part of the Problem Not Solution

Its rhetoric may be softer than the Tories', but the Labour puts profit before people.

By Ken Loach

March 28, 2014 "Information Clearing House - Every day the Guardian publishes accounts of desperate poverty and attacks on welfare provision. We know of the food banks, the plight of disabled people and the housing crisis that affects so many. We know of the propaganda to make the poorest people scapegoats for economic failure. We recognise the hypocrisy of Cameron's "moral mission".

We know that housing support goes to rich landlords, that benefits for the working poor subsidise employers who pay poverty wages. We read that benefit fraud is a tiny fraction of the overall welfare budget, far less than unclaimed benefits, and is nothing compared to the amount lost through tax dodging. But as we rail against the injustice and hypocrisy, we fail to ask one big question. Where is our political fightback? It should be led by the Labour party but therein lies the problem.

The coalition parties proclaim the importance of the market economy. So does Labour. The coalition cuts back on public enterprise and prioritises the interests of big corporations and private companies. So did the last Labour government. Whenever workers organise to defend jobs, wages or conditions, who supports them? Not Ed Miliband or other Labour leaders. An open letter to Miliband from Labourite "intellectuals" published in the Guardian this week is as peripheral is it is self-important.

The demands of the competitive market are remorseless: reduce the cost of labour; privatise everything; remove protection from working people, and maintain a pool of unemployed to discipline those lucky enough to have a job. Trade unions are to be obstructed while the wealthy are courted in the hope that they will find a pliant, flexible workforce that is easy to exploit.

We see the consequences not only in the workplace but in our health service, in education, in all aspects of social care that mark a civilised society. We see it in the disregard for the environment, as in the current push to start fracking for shale gas, regardless of its impact. We have seen it in the illegal wars and imperialist invasions of recent governments. None of this is new. But where is our political representation?

Labour's rhetoric may be softer than the Tories', but its fundamental stance is limited by the same imperative: profit comes before all else. Can the Labour party be reclaimed? Or, rather, made anew into one that will represent the interests of the people?

History suggests it cannot. The high-water mark of 1945 is long gone. The many great achievements of that government have largely been dismantled, either with the collusion of Labour or directly by the party when it has been in power. The Labour left has all but disappeared, and even Tony Benn's voice is now sadly silent. A Miliband government will not reverse any of the privatisations in the health service or elsewhere. It will not take the railways back into public ownership – despite the popularity of such a move – or even reclaim Royal Mail.

The Labour party is part of the problem, not the solution. The Greens have many admirable policies, but we look in vain for a thoroughgoing analysis for fundamental change. We need a new voice, a new movement – a new party.

There are many thousands of campaigns for worthy causes – against hospital closures, to support the homeless, against environmental destruction, to protect the disabled, for human rights and civil liberties, to help those in need – the list is endless. Trade unions still represent millions of working people. There is a unity of interest among all these groups. Imagine what could be achieved if we all acted together.

Left Unity was formed a few months ago to work towards such co-operation. The task is considerable. We are used to working and campaigning within our own small organisations. The proliferation of radical newspapers is witness to that. But the need is urgent. If we don't act together, the poverty, exploitation and alienation will get worse. Where is the rage, asks David Hare. It's there, alright. People are certainly angry enough. But they need political leadership to give them hope.

Labour has taken as its slogan "one nation" – coined by a 19th-century Tory, Benjamin Disraeli. Disraeli had no intention of bringing about the changes to make that a reality. Neither does today's Labour leadership, wedded to a capitalist economy that creates class division. The Labour manifesto of 1945 would be a better inspiration. It promised "a socialist party and proud of it. Its ultimate purpose … is the establishment of the socialist commonwealth, free, democratic, efficient, progressive, public-spirited, its material resources organised in the service of the … people".

The Labour government of '45 chose not to be that party or realise that ambition. Its reforms were to provide an infrastructure for a capitalist economy, not to change society. The task is now to turn the words of the manifesto into a reality. Assert the public good against private greed. Do we have the ability to make it happen?

A new party must be democratic, principled and properly organised. It needs an analysis of contemporary politics with a set of immediate demands: an industrial strategy to create green jobs, a statutory living wage, a public housing programme and a cap on private rents, an end to all privatisation in the health service.

It is a list many can compile; but without political representation it is a futile exercise. Who will put it into effect?

Building a democratic party with volunteer activists is a daunting task. But if we leave the sidelines and, finally, work together, it might just be possible.

• Left Unity has a conference in Manchester on Saturday (29 March). Visit

Irish Labour Fucked

Support for the Labour Party in Ireland is at a historic low, as they continue a leading role in the implementation of austerity measures with right-wing Fine Gael.Their collapse has led to several high-profile resignations and growing concern that Labour will be wiped out in 2015.

European Parliament (MEP) Nessa Childers resigned from the party, being the seventh member to have left the parliamentary Labour Party since the coalition of February 2011.Phil Prendergast, warned that Labour was in danger of “writing its own obituary.”

On April 20, at a charity event in Dublin, Labour’s social affairs minister, Joan Burton, noted in a speech that she felt the population had reached the “limit” of tolerance of austerity measures. She added that such policies could only be continued for so long without generating opposition.Labour has taken the lead in wielding the axe to public spending. The austerity measures initiated by the Fianna Fáil-Green Party coalition were vastly expanded under Labour and Fine Gael.

Labour have led some of the most brutal attacks on working people. Labour’s Brendan Howlin made harsh cuts to social services and workers’ wages. Labour has used its links to the unions to ensure austerity measures are implemented. The unions continue to enforce cuts leading to billions of euros reduction in public sector employment of 10 percent. Labour have led demands for even deeper cuts to pay for the bailout of the banks. None of those raising concerns about Labour’s declining support have in any way repudiated the party’s role in imposing these policies and when confronted with mounting public opposition the unions are increasingly unable to control.

Gilmore has warned against any attempt to slacken the pace of austerity, noting the deep crisis still facing Ireland. “What kind of conditions do people think would be attached? What kind of money do people think would be available? Do people want this period of austerity to continue for another 10 years, another 20?” he commented to the Irish Times .

In reality, Gilmore knows full well that the deals struck by the current government will ensure the continuation of austerity for decades to come with repayments stretching over the next 40 years. The extension of the timetable for the rest of the €85 billion bailout for an extra seven years will secure the full repayment of these funds with interest to the financial elite.

Gilmore is typical of Labour Party leadership whose roots are in the pseudo-left of Irish politics. He began his career in the Workers Party in the 1980s, which sought to exploit Marxist phraseology to promote his fake brand of Irish republicanism. He played a leading role in the right-wing split in 1992 to form Democratic Left with Howlin facilitating the merger with Labour, creating the conditions for the integration of a number of formerly “left” radical figures into the highest echelons of Irish politics.

The task before Irish workers, is to break from these politically corrupt organisations, the pseudo-left groups and mafia Unions that give them support.

Friday, 28 March 2014


Access to YouTube has been cut off in Turkey after an explosive leak of audiotapes that appeared to show ministers talking about provoking military intervention in Syria.

March 27, 2014 "Information Clearing House - "RT"- Access to YouTube has been cut off in Turkey after an explosive leak of audiotapes that appeared to show ministers talking about provoking military intervention in Syria. Other social media have already been blocked ahead of tumultuous local elections.
The latest leaked audio recording, which reportedly led to the ban, appears to show top government officials discussing a potential attack on the tomb of Suleyman Shah, the grandfather of the founder of the Ottoman Empire.
The tomb is in Syrian territory, but protected by Turkish soldiers.
On the tape, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu is heard to say that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan sees any attack as an "opportunity" to increase Turkish presence in Syria, where it has staunchly supported the anti-Assad rebels. Security chief Hakan Fidan then goes one step further, and suggests staging a fake attack to give Turkey a casus belli to intervene in the conflict.
Turkish officials have recently vowed to protect the tomb as its "national soil."
The Foreign Ministry in Ankara reacted to the tape by issuing a statement, calling the leak a “wretched attack” on national security. It also claims the tape was “partially manipulated.”
"These treacherous gangs are the enemies of our state and people. The perpetrators of this attack targeting the security of our state and people will be uncovered in the shortest time and will be handed over to justice to be given the heaviest penalty,"the ministry said.
A source inside the office of President Abdullah Gül, who has taken a softer line than Erdoğan over the series of government leaks, told Reuters that access to YouTube may be restored if the sensitive content is removed, even though the original video has been deleted.
Invoking national security and privacy concerns has been the government’s tactic in fighting off a stream of leaks showing top officials engaging in unsavory or downright illegal practices.
Erdoğan has also repeatedly claimed that most of the audio recordings are fakes. He labeled the latest audio revelation"villainous" during a stump speech in Diyabakir.
Twitter, another popular source for leaks, has already been shut down in Turkey since March 20, after a court order.
Since then, the California-based social network and organizations have fought in several courts to have the decision reversed, calling it “disproportionate and illegal.”
A court ruling in Ankara on Wednesday supported the appeal, but the country’s regulator has a month to unblock Twitter, leading to speculation that any such move would only take place after the election.
The incumbent party also enjoys the benefit of robust privacy legislation passed last month, which makes it easy to cut off any website even before any violation has been legally proven.
The US has led the chorus of international condemnation, calling the government’s moves "censorship" tantamount to“21st century book-burning.”

March 27, 2014 "Information Clearing House - "Zero Hedge"-As we noted here, Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan had blocked Twitter access to his nation ahead of what was rumored to be a "spectacular" leak before this weekend's elections. Then this morning, amid a mad scramble, he reportedly (despite the nation's court ruling the bans illegal) blocked YouTube access. However, by the magic of the interwebs, we have the 'leaked' clip and it is clear why he wanted it blocked/banned. As the rough translation explains, it purports to be a conversation between key Turkish military and political leaders discussing what appears to be a false flag attack to launch war with Syria

Among the most damning sections:
Ahmet Davutolu: “Prime Minister said that in current conjuncture, this attack (on Suleiman Shah Tomb) must be seen as an opportunity for us.” 
Hakan Fidan: “I’ll send 4 men from Syria, if that’s what it takes. I’ll make up a cause of war by ordering a missile attack on Turkey; we can also prepare an attack on Suleiman Shah Tomb if necessary.” 
Feridun Sinirliolu: “Our national security has become a common, cheap domestic policy outfit.” 
Ya?ar Güler: “It’s a direct cause of war. I mean, what’re going to do is a direct cause of war.”
Feridun Sinirolu: There are some serious shifts in global and regional geopolitics. It now can spread to other places. You said it yourself today, and others agreed… We’re headed to a different game now. We should be able to see those. That ISIL and all that jazz, all those organizations are extremely open to manipulation. Having a region made up of organizations of similar nature will constitute a vital security risk for us. And when we first went into Northern Iraq, there was always the risk of PKK blowing up the place. If we thoroughly consider the risks and substantiate… As the general just said… 
Yaar Güler: Sir, when you were inside a moment ago, we were discussing just that. Openly. I mean, armed forces are a “tool” necessary for you in every turn. 
Ahmet Davutolu: Of course. I always tell the Prime Minister, in your absence, the same thing in academic jargon, you can’t stay in those lands without hard power. Without hard power, there can be no soft power.
And just in case you had faith that this was all made up and Erdogan is right to ban it... he just admitted it was true!
To summarize: a recording confirming a NATO-member country planned a false-flag war with Syria (where have we seen that before?) and all the Prime Minister has to say is the leak was "immoral." 
Erdogan is not amused:
Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan described the leaking on YouTube on Thursday of a recording of top security officials discussing possible military operations in Syria as "villainous" and the government blocked access to the video-sharing site. 
"They even leaked a national security meeting. This is villainous, this is dishonesty...Who are you serving by doing audio surveillance of such an important meeting?" Erdogan declared before supporters at a rally ahead of March 30 local polls that will be a key test of his support amid a corruption scandal.


Proclamation of the Irish Republic
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This article is about the 1916 proclamation. For the 1948 statute, see Republic of Ireland Act 1948.

A printed copy of the Proclamation of the Irish Republic.

The Proclamation of the Republic (Irish: Forógra na Poblachta), also known as the 1916 Proclamation or Easter Proclamation, was a document issued by the Irish Volunteers and Irish Citizen Armyduring the Easter Rising in Ireland, which began on 24 April 1916. In it, the Military Council of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, styling itself the "Provisional Government of the Irish Republic", proclaimed Ireland's independence from the United Kingdom. The reading of the proclamation by Patrick Pearse outside the General Post Office(GPO) on Sackville Street (now called O'Connell Street), Dublin's main thoroughfare, marked the beginning of the Rising. The proclamation was modelled on a similar independence proclamation issued during the 1803 rebellion by Robert Emmet.

Contents [hide]
1 The taking of the GPO
2 Principles of the proclamation
3 The printing and distribution of the text
4 The signatories
5 The document today
6 See also
7 Footnotes
8 Additional reading and external links

The taking of the GPO[edit]

Before reading the proclamation, Pearse and other Republican leaders seized the GPO and made it their military headquarters, flying the new flag of the republic (see image below) from the flag-pole instead of the Union Flag. The green, white and orange tricolour was also flown on a lower flag-pole. The GPO, the Easter Proclamation and the tricolour (which later came to be seen as the flag of the republic, replacing the original green flag, which is now on display in the National Museum of Ireland) are the three most identifiable symbols of the Easter Rising, alongside the leaders, Thomas J. Clarke, Seán Mac Diarmada, Thomas MacDonagh, P. H. Pearse, Éamonn Ceannt, James Connolly and Joseph Plunkett.
Principles of the proclamation[edit]

Though the Rising failed in military terms, the principles of the Proclamation to varying degrees influenced the thinking of later generations of Irish politicians. The document consisted of a number of assertions:
that the Rising's leaders spoke for Ireland (a claim historically made by Irish insurrectionary movements);
that the Rising marked another wave of attempts to achieve independence through force of arms;
that the Irish Republican Brotherhood, the Irish Volunteers and the Irish Citizen Army were central to the Rising;
"the right of the people of Ireland to the ownership of Ireland"
that the form of government was to be a republic;
a guarantee of "religious and civil liberty, equal rights and equal opportunities to all its citizens", the first mention of gender equality, given that Irish women under British law were not allowed to vote;
a commitment to universal suffrage, a phenomenon limited at the time to only a handful of countries, not including Britain;
a promise to cherish "all the children of the nation equally"
The printing and distribution of the text[edit]

This article's section called "The printing and distribution of the text"needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (May 2010)

The proclamation had been printed secretly prior to the Rising on a Summit Wharfedale Stop Cylinder Press. Because of its secret printing, problems arose which affected the layout and design. In particular, because of a shortage of lettering, the document was printed in two halves, leading to a proliferation of 'half copies', most of which were destroyed by British soldiers in the aftermath of the Rising. The typesetters were Willie O'Brien, Michael Molloy and Christopher Brady.[1] They lacked a sufficient supply of same size and font letters, and as a result the latter half of the document used smaller es than the rest of the text, a distinctive feature of the document.

The language suggested that the original copy of the proclamation had actually been signed by the Rising's leaders. However no evidence has ever been found, nor do any contemporary records mention, the existence of an actually signed copy, though had such a copy existed, it could easily have been destroyed in the aftermath of the Rising by someone (in the British military, a member of the public or a Rising participant trying to destroy potentially incriminating evidence) who did not appreciate its historic importance.

There are about 30 original copies still remaining, one of which can be viewed in the National Print Museum.[2]
The signatories[edit]

The "Irish Republic" flag. Now on display in the National Museum of Ireland.

One question sometimes raised is why the first name among the 'signatories' was not Pearse but Tom Clarke, a veteran republican. Had the arrangement of names been alphabetical, Éamonn Ceanntwould have appeared on top. Clarke's widow maintained that it was because the plan had been for Clarke, as a famed veteran, to become the President of the Provisional Republic. Such an explanation would certainly explain his premier position. However others associated with the Rising dismissed her claims, which she made in her memoirs. Later documents issued by the rebels gave Pearse pride of place, though as 'Commanding in Chief the Forces of the Irish Republic, and President of the ProvisionalGovernment',[3] not 'President of the Republic'. Whether the plan had ever been to have Clarke as a symbolic head of state and Pearse as head of government, or was simply that Pearse was always to be central but with statements ambiguously describing his title, remains a mystery about which historians still speculate.

All seven signatories of the proclamation were executed by the British military (James Connolly who had been wounded in the fighting was executed sitting down in a chair) in the aftermath of the Rising, being viewed as having committed treason in wartime (i.e., the First World War).[4] British political leaders regarded the executions initially as unwise, later as a catastrophe, with the British Prime Minister Herbert Asquith and later prime minister David Lloyd George stating that they regretted allowing the British military to treat the matter as a matter of military law in wartime, rather than insisting that the leaders were treated under civilian criminal law. Though initially deeply unsympathetic to the Rising (the leading Irish nationalist newspaper, the Irish Independent called for their execution), Irish public opinion switched and became more sympathetic due to manner of their treatment and executions. Eventually Asquith's government ordered a halt to the executions and insisted that those not already executed be dealt with through civilian, not military, law. By that stage all the signatories and a number of others had been executed.
The document today[edit]

This section does not cite any references or sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (April 2011)

Full copies of the Easter Proclamation are now treated as a revered Irish nationalist icon, and a copy was sold at auction for over €700,000 in April, 2006. A copy owned (and later signed as a memento) by Rising participant Seán T. O'Kelly was presented by him to the Irish parliament buildings, Leinster House, during his tenure as President of Ireland. It is currently on permanent display in the main foyer. Other copies are on display in the GPO (headquarters of the Rising and the place where the Proclamation was first read), the National Museum of Ireland, the Trinity College Library's Long Room and other museums worldwide. Facsimile copies are for sale to tourists in Ireland. Copies of the text are often displayed in Irish schools and in Irish pubs throughout the world. The proclamation is read aloud by a member of the Officer of the Irish Defence Forces outside the GPO during the Easter Rising commemorations on Easter Sunday of each year.
See also[edit]
Wikisource has original text related to this article:
Proclamation of the Republic

The signatories (as their names appeared on the Proclamation):
Thomas J. Clarke
Seán Mac Diarmada
Thomas MacDonagh
P. H. Pearse
Éamonn Ceannt
James Connolly
Joseph Plunkett
Éamon de Valera
Easter Rising
Sinn Féin Manifesto 1918
First Dáil
Dublin Castle administration in Ireland

Jump up^ Irish Transport and General Workers' Union (1959). Fifty years of Liberty Hall: the golden jubilee of the Irish Transport and General Workers' Union 1909–1959. Dublin: Three Candles. p. 69. Retrieved 11 May 2011.
Jump up^ "Permanent Exhibitions". National Print Museum (Ireland). 2011. Retrieved 11 May 2011.
Jump up^ "The Provisional Government to the Citizens of Dublin" proclamation. (National Library of Ireland poster collection)
Jump up^ Dublin Gazette, Proclamation of the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Lord Wimborne, on 9 May 1916 had proclaimed Dublin under martial law, with the statement that subsequent actions by the Dublin Castle administration would be taken in accordance with that declaration.
Additional reading and external links[edit]
Tim Pat Coogan, Michael Collins (ISBN 0-09-174106-8)
Tim Pat Coogan, De Valera (ISBN 0-09-175030-X)
Dorothy McCardle, The Irish Republic
Arthur Mitchell and Padraig Ó Snodaigh, Irish Political Documents: 1916–1949
John O'Connor, The 1916 Proclamation
Conor Kostick & Lorcan Collins, The Easter Rising, A Guide to Dublin in 1916 (ISBN 0-86278-638-X)
The 1916 Proclamation on the National Library of Ireland's Flickr photostream


Easter Rising


Major constitutional laws affecting Ireland

1916 in Ireland
Declarations of independence
Easter Rising
History of Ireland (1801–1923)
Irish Republican Brotherhood
Official documents of Ireland


Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Not to be confused with Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen of 1793.

The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen of 1789 is a fundamental document of the French Revolution and in the history of human rights

The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, or (French: Déclaration des droits de l'homme et du citoyen) of August 1789 is a fundamental document of the French Revolution and in the history of human rights.[1] It defines the individual and collective rights of all the estates of the realm as universal. Influenced by the doctrine of "natural right", the rights of man are held to be universal: valid at all times and in every place, pertaining to human nature itself. It became the basis for a nation of free individuals protected equally by law. It is included in the preamble of the constitutions of both the Fourth French Republic (1946) and Fifth Republic (1958) and is still current. Inspired in part by the American Revolution, the Declaration was a core statement of the values of the French revolution and had a major impact on the development of liberty and democracy in Europe and worldwide.[2]

Contents [hide]
1 History
2 Philosophical and theoretical context
3 Substance
3.1 Active and passive citizenship
3.2 Women's rights
3.3 Slavery
4 Legacy
4.1 Constitution of the French Fifth Republic
4.2 Conspiracy theories
5 See also
5.1 Other early declarations of rights
6 References
6.1 Other languages
7 External links
8 Notes
9 Further reading
10 External links


The inspiration and content of the document emerged largely from the ideals of the American Revolution.[3] The key drafts were prepared by Lafayette, working at times with his close friend Thomas Jefferson.[4][5] In August 1789 Mirabeau played a central role in conceptualizing and drafting "The Declaration of the Rights of Man."[6]

The last article of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen was adopted on 26 August 1789, by the National Constituent Assembly (Assemblée nationale constituante), during the period of the French Revolution, as the first step toward writing a constitution for France. Inspired by the Enlightenment, the original version of the Declaration was discussed by the representatives on the basis of a 24 article draft proposed by the sixth bureau,[7][8] led by Jérôme Champion de Cicé. The draft was later modified during the debates. A second and lengthier declaration, known as the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen of 1793 was written in 1793 but never formally adopted.[9]
Philosophical and theoretical context[edit]

The concepts in the Declaration come from the philosophical and political duties of the Enlightenment, such as individualism, the social contract as theorized by the French philosopher Rousseau, and theseparation of powers espoused by the Baron de Montesquieu. As can be seen in the texts, the French declaration is heavily influenced by the political philosophy of the Enlightenment, by Enlightenment principles of human rights, and with the U.S. Declaration of Independence which preceded it (4 July 1776).Thomas Jefferson, primary author of the U.S. Declaration of Independence, was at the time in France as a U.S. diplomat, and worked closely with Lafayette in designing a bill of rights for France. In the ratification by the states of the U.S. Constitution in 1788 critics had demanded a written Bill of Rights. In responseJames Madison's proposal for a U.S. Bill of Rights was introduced on June 8, 1789 in New York, 11 weeks before the French declaration. Considering the 6 to 8 weeks it took news to cross the Atlantic, it is possible that the French knew of the American text. But as Lafebvre notes, both texts emerged from the same shared intellectual heritage.[10] The same people took part in shaping both documents, Lafayette admired Jefferson and Jefferson found him useful writing in 1787 that Lafayette as "a most valuable auxiliary to me. His zeal is unbounded, & his weight with those in power, great."[11] Historian Iain McLean concludes that Jefferson worked hard to influence the French "Declaration" and that Lafayette was "the ideal tool for Jefferson’s interests as they broadened from American trade to French politics."[12][13]

The declaration is in the spirit of "secular natural law", which does not base itself on religious doctrine or authority, in contrast with traditional natural law theory, which does.[14]

The declaration defines a single set of individual and collective rights for all men. Influenced by the doctrine of natural rights, these rights are held to be universal and valid in all times and places. For example, "Men are born and remain free and equal in rights. Social distinctions may be founded only upon the general good."[15] They have certain natural rights to property, to liberty and to life. According to this theory the role of government is to recognize and secure these rights. Furthermore government should be carried on by elected representatives.[14]

At the time of writing, the rights contained in the declaration were only awarded to men. Furthermore, the declaration was a statement of vision rather than reality. The declaration was not deeply rooted in either the practice of the West or even France at the time. The declaration emerged in the late 18th Century out of war and revolution. It encountered opposition as democracy and individual rights were frequently regarded as synonymous with anarchy and subversion. The declaration embodies ideals and aspirations towards which France pledged to struggle in the future.[16]

The Declaration is introduced by a preamble describing the fundamental characteristics of the rights which are qualified as being "natural, unalienable and sacred" and consisting of "simple and incontestable principles" on which citizens could base their demands. In the second article, "the natural and imprescriptible rights of man" are defined as "liberty, property, security and resistance to oppression". It called for the destruction of aristocratic privileges by proclaiming an end to feudalism and to exemptions from taxation, freedom and equal rights for all human beings (referred to as "Men"), and access to public office based on talent. The monarchy was restricted, and all citizens were to have the right to take part in the legislative process. Freedom of speech and press were declared, and arbitrary arrests outlawed.[17]

The Declaration also asserted the principles of popular sovereignty, in contrast to the divine right of kingsthat characterized the French monarchy, and social equality among citizens, "All the citizens, being equal in the eyes of the law, are equally admissible to all public dignities, places, and employments, according to their capacity and without distinction other than that of their virtues and of their talents," eliminating the special rights of the nobility and clergy.

Men are born and remain free and equal in rights. Social distinctions may be founded only upon the general good.
The aim of all political association is the preservation of the natural and imprescriptible rights of man. These rights are liberty, property, security, and resistance to oppression.
The principle of all sovereignty resides essentially in the nation. No body nor individual may exercise any authority which does not proceed directly from the nation.
Liberty consists in the freedom to do everything which injures no one else; hence the exercise of the natural rights of each man has no limits except those which assure to the other members of the society the enjoyment of the same rights. These limits can only be determined by law.
Law can only prohibit such actions as are hurtful to society. Nothing may be prevented which is not forbidden by law, and no one may be forced to do anything not provided for by law.
Law is the expression of the general will. Every citizen has a right to participate personally, or through his representative, in its foundation. It must be the same for all, whether it protects or punishes. All citizens, being equal in the eyes of the law, are equally eligible to all dignities and to all public positions and occupations, according to their abilities, and without distinction except that of their virtues and talents.
No person shall be accused, arrested, or imprisoned except in the cases and according to the forms prescribed by law. Any one soliciting, transmitting, executing, or causing to be executed, any arbitrary order, shall be punished. But any citizen summoned or arrested in virtue of the law shall submit without delay, as resistance constitutes an offense.
The law shall provide for such punishments only as are strictly and obviously necessary, and no one shall suffer punishment except it be legally inflicted in virtue of a law passed and promulgated before the commission of the offense.
As all persons are held innocent until they shall have been declared guilty, if arrest shall be deemed indispensable, all harshness not essential to the securing of the prisoner's person shall be severely repressed by law.
No one shall be disquieted on account of his opinions, including his religious views, provided their manifestation does not disturb the public order established by law.
The free communication of ideas and opinions is one of the most precious of the rights of man. Every citizen may, accordingly, speak, write, and print with freedom, but shall be responsible for such abuses of this freedom as shall be defined by law.
The security of the rights of man and of the citizen requires public military forces. These forces are, therefore, established for the good of all and not for the personal advantage of those to whom they shall be entrusted.
A general tax is indispensable for the maintenance of the public force and for the expenses of administration; it ought to be equally apportioned among all citizens according to their means.[18]
All the citizens have a right to decide, either personally or by their representatives, as to the necessity of the public contribution; to grant this freely; to know to what uses it is put; and to fix the proportion, the mode of assessment and of collection and the duration of the taxes.
Society has the right to require of every public agent an account of his administration.
A society in which the observance of the law is not assured, nor the separation of powers defined, has no constitution at all.
Property being an inviolable and sacred right, no one can be deprived of it, unless demanded by public necessity, legally constituted, explicitly demands it, and under the condition of a just and prior indemnity.
Active and passive citizenship[edit]

While the French Revolution provided rights to a larger portion of the population, there remained a distinction between those who obtained the political rights in the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen and those who did not. Those who were deemed to hold these political rights were called active citizens. Active citizenship was granted to men who were French, at least 25 years old, paid taxes equal to three days work, and could not be defined as servants (Thouret).[19] This meant that at the time of the Declaration only male property owners held these rights.[20] The deputies in the National Assemblybelieved that only those who held tangible interests in the nation could make informed political decisions.[21] This distinction directly affects articles 6, 12, 14, and 15 of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen as each of these rights is related to the right to vote and to participate actively in the government. With the decree of 29 October 1789, the term active citizen became embedded in French politics.[22]

The concept of passive citizens was created to encompass those populations that had been excluded from political rights in the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen. Because of the requirements set down for active citizens, the vote was granted to approximately 4.3 million Frenchmen.[22] out of a population of around 29 million.[23] These omitted groups included women, slaves, children, and foreigners. As these measures were voted upon by the General Assembly, they limited the rights of certain groups of citizens while implementing the democratic process of the new French Republic (1792–1804).[21] This legislation, passed in 1789, was amended by the creators of the Constitution of 1795 in order to eliminate the label of active citizen.[24] The power to vote was then, however, to be granted solely to substantial property owners.[24]

Tensions arose between active and passive citizens throughout the Revolution. This happened when passive citizens started to call for more rights, or when they openly refused to listen to the ideals set forth by active citizens. This cartoon clearly demonstrates the difference that existed between the active and passive citizens along with the tensions associated with such differences.[25] In the cartoon, a passive citizen is holding a spade and a wealthy landowning active citizen is ordering the passive citizens to go to work. The act appears condescending to the passive citizen and it revisits the reasons why the French Revolution began in the first place.

Women, in particular, were strong passive citizens who played a significant role in the Revolution. Olympe de Gouges penned her Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen in 1791 and drew attention to the need for gender equality.[26] By supporting the ideals of the French Revolution and wishing to expand them to women, she represented herself as a revolutionary citizen. Madame Roland also established herself as an influential figure throughout the Revolution. She saw women of the French Revolution as holding three roles; “inciting revolutionary action, formulating policy, and informing others of revolutionary events.”[27] By working with men, as opposed to working separate from men, she may have been able to further the fight of revolutionary women. As players in the French Revolution, women occupied a significant role in the civic sphere by forming social movements and participating in popular clubs, allowing them societal influence, despite their lack of direct political influence.[28]
Women's rights[edit]

The Declaration recognized many rights as belonging to citizens (who could only be male). This was despite the fact that after The March on Versailles on 5 October 1789, women presented the Women's Petition to the National Assembly in which they proposed a decree giving women equality.[citation needed] In 1790 Nicolas de Condorcet and Etta Palm d'Aelders unsuccessfully called on the National Assembly to extend civil and political rights to women.[29] Condorcet declared that “and he who votes against the right of another, whatever the religion, color, or sex of that other, has henceforth abjured his own”.[30] The French Revolution did not lead to a recognition of women’s rights and this prompted Olympe de Gougesto publish the Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen in September 1791.[31]

The Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen is modelled on the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen and is ironic in formulation and exposes the failure of the French Revolution, which had been devoted to equality. It states that:

“This revolution will only take effect when all women become fully aware of their deplorable condition, and of the rights they have lost in society”.

The Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen follows the seventeen articles of theDeclaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen point for point and has been described by Camille Naish as “almost a parody... of the original document”. The first article of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen proclaims that:

“Men are born and remain free and equal in rights. Social distinctions may be based only on common utility.”

The first article of Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen replied:

“Woman is born free and remains equal to man in rights. Social distinctions may only be based on common utility”.

De Gouges also draws attention to the fact that under French law women were fully punishable, yet denied equal rights, declaring “Women have the right to mount the scaffold, they must also have the right to mount the speaker’s rostrum”.[32]

The declaration did not revoke the institution of slavery, as lobbied for by Jacques-Pierre Brissot's Les Amis des Noirs and defended by the group of colonial planters called the Club Massiac because they met at the Hôtel Massiac.[33] Despite the lack of explicit mention of slavery in the Declaration, slave uprisings in Saint-Domingue in the Haitian Revolution took inspiration from its words, as discussed in C. L. R. James' history of the Haitian Revolution, The Black Jacobins.[citation needed]

Deplorable conditions for the thousands of slaves in Saint-Domingue, the most profitable slave colony in the world, led to the uprisings which would be known as the first successful slave revolt in the New World. Slavery in the French colonies was abolished by the Convention dominated by the Jacobins in 1794. However, Napoleon reinstated it in 1802. The colony of Saint-Domingue became an independent state in 1804.

The declaration has also influenced and inspired rights-based liberal democracy throughout the world. It was translated as soon as 1793–1794 by Colombian Antonio Nariño, who published it despite the Inquisition and was sentenced to be imprisoned for ten years for doing so. In 2003, the document was listed on UNESCO's Memory of the World register.
Constitution of the French Fifth Republic[edit]
Main article: Constitution of the French Fifth Republic

According to the preamble of the Constitution of the French Fifth Republic (adopted on 4 October 1958, and the current constitution), the principles set forth in the Declaration have constitutional value. Many laws and regulations have been canceled because they did not comply with those principles as interpreted by the Conseil Constitutionnel ("Constitutional Council of France") or by the Conseil d'État ("Council of State").
Taxation legislation or practices that seem to make some unwarranted difference between citizens are struck down as unconstitutional.
Suggestions of positive discrimination on ethnic grounds are rejected because they infringe on the principle of equality, since they would establish categories of people that would, by birth, enjoy greater rights.
Conspiracy theories[edit]

The Eye of Providence represents the sun 'shining' on the laws and fueled several conspiracy theories, for instance that the French Revolution was caused by occult groups.[34][35][better source needed]
See also[edit]
Human rights in France
Moral universalism
Natural law
Natural rights
Other early declarations of rights[edit]
Magna Carta (England, 1215)
Henrician Articles and Pacta Conventa (Poland, 1573)
Bill of Rights (England, 1689)
Claim of Right (Scotland, 1689)
Virginia Declaration of Rights (United States, 1776)
Bill of Rights (United States, 1789)
Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen of Franchimont (Belgium, 1789)
Jack Censer and Lynn Hunt, Liberty, Equality, Fraternity: Exploring the French Revolution, University Park: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2001.
Susan Dalton, Gender and the Shifting Ground of Revolutionary Politics: The Case of Madame Roland, Canadian Journal of History, 36, no. 2 (2001): 259–83.
William Doyle, The Oxford History of the French Revolution, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1989.
Darline Levy and Harriet Applewhite, A Political Revolution for Women? The Case of Paris, In The French Revolution: conflicting interpretations. 5th ed. Malabar, Fla.: Krieger Pub. Co., 2002. 317–46.
Jeremy Popkin, A History of Modern France, Upper Saddle River: Pearson Education, Inc., 2006.
"Active Citizen/Passive Citizen", Liberty, Equality, Fraternity: Exploring the French Revolution(accessed October 30, 2011).
Other languages[edit]
Giorgio Del Vecchio, La déclaration des droits de l'homme et du citoyen dans la Révolution française: contributions à l’histoire de la civilisation européenne, Librairie générale de droit et de jurisprudence, Paris,1968.
Stéphane Rials, ed, La déclaration des droits de l'homme et du citoyen, Hachette, Paris, 1988, ISBN 2-01-014671-9.
Claude-Albert Colliard, La déclaration des droits de l'homme et du citoyen de 1789, La Documentation française, Paris, 1990, ISBN 2-11-002329-5.
Gérard Conac, Marc Debene, Gérard Teboul, eds, La Déclaration des droits de l'homme et du citoyen de 1789; histoire, analyse et commentaires, Economica, Paris, 1993, ISBN 978-2-7178-2483-4.
Realino Marra, La giustizia penale nei princìpi del 1789, «Materiali per una storia della cultura giuridica», XXXI–2, 2001, 353–64.
External links[edit]
Jacques–Guillaume Thouret, "Report on the Basis of Political Eligibility" (29 September 1789)",Liberty, Equality, Fraternity: Exploring the French Revolution, accessed October 26, 2011 .
Olympe de Gouges, Declaration of the Rights of Woman, 1791, College of Staten Island Library (accessed October 30, 2011). <link is broken>
“Social Causes of the Revolution” Liberty, Equality, Fraternity: Exploring the French Revolution, accessed October 26, 2011

Jump up^ The French title is sometimes translated as "Declaration of Human and Civic Rights."
Jump up^ Kopstein Kopstein (2000). Comparative Politics: Interests, Identities, and Institutions in a Changing Global Order. Cambridge UP. p. 72.
Jump up^ Georges Lefebvre (2005). The Coming of the French Revolution. Princeton UP. p. 212.
Jump up^ George Athan Billias, ed. (2009). American Constitutionalism Heard Round the World, 1776-1989: A Global Perspective. NYU Press. p. 92.
Jump up^ Susan Dunn, Sister Revolutions: French Lightning, American Light (1999) pp 143-45
Jump up^ Keith Baker, "The Idea of a Declaration of Rights" in Dale Van Kley, ed. The French Idea of Freedom: The Old Regime and the Declaration of Rights of 1789 (1997) pp 154-96.
Jump up^ The original draft is an annex to the report of the August 12th report (Archives parlementaires, 1,e série, tome VIII, débats du 12 août 1789, p. 431).
Jump up^ Archives parlementaires, 1e série, tome VIII,débats du 19 août 1789, p. 459.
Jump up^ Gregory Fremont-Barnes, ed. (2007).Encyclopedia of the Age of Political Revolutions and New Ideologies, 1760-1815. Greenwood Publishing Group. pp. 159 vol 1.
Jump up^ Lefebvre. The Coming of the French Revolution. pp. 212–13.
Jump up^ Francis D. Cogliano, ed. (2011). A Companion to Thomas Jefferson. John Wiley & Sons. p. 127.
Jump up^ Cogliano, ed. A Companion to Thomas Jefferson. p. 127.
Jump up^ Iain McLean, "Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and the Déclaration des Droits de l’Homme et du Citoyen" in The future of liberal democracy: Thomas Jefferson and the contemporary world(Palgrave Macmillan, 2004) online
^ Jump up to:a b Merryman, John Henry; Rogelip Perez-Perdomo (2007). The civil law tradition: an introduction to the legal system of Europe and Latin America. Stanford University Press. p. 16.ISBN 9780804755696.
Jump up^ First Article, Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen.
Jump up^ Lauren, Paul Gordon (2003). The evolution of international human rights: visions seen. University of Pennsylvania Press. p. 32.ISBN 9780812218541.
Jump up^ Spielvogel, Jackson J. (2008). Western Civilization: 1300 to 1815. Wadsworth Publishing. p. 580. ISBN 978-0-495-50289-0.
Jump up^ "Declaration". Retrieved August 10, 2012.
Jump up^ Thouret 1789,
Jump up^ Censer and Hunt 2001, p. 55.
^ Jump up to:a b Popkin 2006, p. 46.
^ Jump up to:a b Doyle 1989, p. 124.
Jump up^ “Social Causes of the Revolution”
^ Jump up to:a b Doyle 1989, p. 420.
Jump up^ “Active/Passive Citizen”,
Jump up^ De Gouges, "Declaration of the Rights of Women", 1791.
Jump up^ Dalton 2001, p. 1.
Jump up^ Levy and Applewhite 2002, pp. 319–20, 324.
Jump up^ Williams, Helen Maria; Neil Fraistat, Susan Sniader Lanser, David Brookshire (2001).Letters written in France. Broadview Press Ltd. p. 246. ISBN 978-1-55111-255-8.
Jump up^ Lauren, Paul Gordon (2003). The evolution of international human rights. University of Pennsylvania Press. pp. 18–20. ISBN 978-0-8122-1854-1.
Jump up^ Naish, Camille (1991). Death comes to the maiden: Sex and Execution, 1431–1933. Routledge. p. 136. ISBN 978-0-415-05585-7.
Jump up^ Naish, Camille (1991). Death comes to the maiden: Sex and Execution, 1431–1933. Routledge. p. 137. ISBN 978-0-415-05585-7.
Jump up^ The club of reactionary colonial proprietors meeting since July 1789 were opposed to representation in the Assemblée of France's overseas dominions, for fear "that this would expose delicate colonial issues to the hazards of debate in the Assembly," as Robin Blackburn expressed it (Blackburn, The Overthrow of Colonial Slavery, 1776–1848 [1988:174f]); see also the speech of Jean-Baptiste Belley
Jump up^ Mounier, Jean Joseph, On the Influence Attributed to Philosophers, Free-Masons, and to the Illuminati on the Revolution of France, facsimile reproduction with an introduction by Theodore A. DiPadove. Delmar, New York, Scholars' Facsimiles & Reprints, 1974, p. 69.
Jump up^ Knight, Peter (2003). Conspiracy theories in American history : an encyclopedia. Santa Barbara, Calif.: ABC-CLIO. pp. 226–227, 336–337. ISBN 978-1-57607-812-9.
Further reading[edit]
Blackburn, Robin (October 2006) “Haiti, Slavery, and the Age of the Democratic Revolution” The William and Mary Quarterly, Third Series, Vol. 63, No. 4, Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, pp. 643–74.
Dittrich, Horst, actor and translator (2012). Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizentranslated into Austrian übertragen, edited by ARBOS – Company for Music and Theatre, ISBN 978-3-9503173-2-9, ARBOS-Edition © & ® 2012
Kates, Gary and Hufton, Olwen. (1998) "In Search of Counter-Revolutionary Women." The French Revolution: Recent Debates and New Controversies. London: Routledge
McLean, Iain. "Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and the Déclaration des Droits de l’Homme et du Citoyen" in The future of liberal democracy: Thomas Jefferson and the contemporary world(Palgrave Macmillan, 2004) online
Smith, George H. (2008). "Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen". In Hamowy, Ronald.The Encyclopedia of Libertarianism. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE; Cato Institute. pp. 115–7.ISBN 978-1-4129-6580-4. LCCN 2008009151. OCLC 750831024.
Wallerstein, Immanuel (2003). "Citizens all? Citizens some! The making of the citizen". Comparative Studies in Society and History 45, (4): 650
External links[edit]
Find more about Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen at Wikipedia's sister projects
Definitions and translationsfrom Wiktionary
Media from Commons
Quotations from Wikiquote
Source texts from Wikisource
Textbooks from Wikibooks
Learning resources from Wikiversity

"Déclaration des Droits de l'Homme et du Citoyen de 1789".Conseil constitutionnel (in French). Retrieved 14 May 2012.
"Déclaration des Droits de l'Homme et du Citoyen de 1789".Légifrance (in French). Retrieved 14 May 2012.
"Déclaration des droits de l'Homme et du citoyen de 1789".Ministère de la Justice et des Libertés : TEXTES & RÉFORMES (in French). Retrieved 14 May 2012.
"Declaration of human and civic rights of 26 August 1789".Conseil constitutionnel. Retrieved 14 May 2012.


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