Friday, 20 March 2015


Dead men don't talk, neither do dead women or dead children. They often became disappeared, in the British Dirty War in Occupied Ireland. The hidden facts around child rape, are meant to determine the political outcome of the troubles and long war in Ireland. Machiavellian tactics, justified in the name of a Pseudo Peace Process, disguising Occupation. Knowledge is power and the British Intelligence community, principally MI5, are witholding that knowledge, secret, ensuring they remain the Principal powebrokers, not just in Ireland but also, it would appear to be the case within the British Establishment. Gathering Intelligence is but one facet of their exercise. Entrapment and creating State Terror is another. Connecting the dots and utilizing it, is the principal. Under the British Official Secrets Act, this knowledge is meant to be made public, after thirty years, this apparently does not apply to Occupied Ireland, so you will have to connect the dots yourself, from the considerable information now emerging, from whistleblowers and victims. Politicians and journalists around both Westminster and Stormont are starting to get nervous, their body language betrays them.

One does not have to be particularly bright, to realize, that the British Establishment and Intelligence Community, are waiting for all of the main players and particpant's in their Dirty War in Ireland, to die, before they concoct their own version of events, like they did in the instance of the Irish Holocaust. Yesterday another of the tortured "Hooded Men", Gerry McKerr, died. He was one of the "Guineapigs' of torture experiments, later used in places like Abu Graib. Like many other techniques experimented on, in Ireland, they were later used in Empire building, around the World. Child Rape, Child abuse and political blackmail, being others, among many. The account of Gerry's experience, is at the bottom of th page, because it is a seperate issue. The link immediately below this article, reveals, significant emerging details, that is tightening the noose around padeophile politicians in particular. Again, please share, because this material is being hidden and slowed with intranets. Please campaign for the Kincora Home, to be part of the investigation, with relevant Intelligence material, to be a compulsory part of evidence, which demands an immediate public Inquiry, before all relevant people die. Check the link below for details.

What did police know about historic child sex offences Link

A former Army officer has said any new investigation of the Kincora Boys' Home must have access to information from intelligence agencies.
Colin Wallace tried to draw attention to sexual abuse at the east Belfast home in the 1970s.
He said if the home is included in a UK-wide investigation into abuse, then the terms of any inquiry into what happened must be widened.
In 1981, three senior care staff at the home were jailed for abusing 11 boys.
It has been claimed that people of the "highest profile" were connected.
Mr Wallace received intelligence in 1973 to say that boys were being abused, but claims some of his superiors refused to pass on the information.
"I know that some officers from the security services in Northern Ireland did know and actually reprimanded intelligence officers from raising the matter and also told them they were to desist from any further investigation," he told the BBC's Sunday Sequence programme.
Mr Wallace said two previous inquiries which looked at Kincora - the Terry Inquiry and the Hughes Inquiry - did not examine evidence relating to the intelligence services.
"My evidence, and the evidence of other people, was ruled out, because those inquiries quite clearly, and indeed, we know now specifically and deliberately, ruled out the role of the intelligence services," he said.
"The evidence that I was willing to give to previous inquiries, from the Official Secrets point of view I couldn't do that because that was not within the terms of those inquiries.
"If there is going to be any way of moving this forward, the government - and David Cameron has said no stone will be unturned - must make sure that any information, held anywhere by any agency will be made available.
"But of course the problem is, I know from my own personal experience, that those files have long since disappeared."
'Truth may never be known'
Mr Wallace said he doubted the full truth would ever be known about Kincora.
"I don't want to be pessimistic and I genuinely hope that there will be a major effort now to bring closure, now that we know more about abuses on a national scale," he said.
"But I have to say, based on my own personal experience, I really doubt that very much (that the full truth will ever be known)."
Colin WallaceColin Wallace is a former Army information officer
Kincora victims, politicians, former police officers and campaign groups have all called for Kincora to be included in a UK-wide investigation into abuse.
The chair of Northern Ireland's Historical Instorical Abuse Inquiry, Sir Anthony Hart, has said it "does not have sufficient powers" to investigate some of the allegations relating to Kincora.

'Terrible abuses'
On Friday, NI First Minister Peter Robinson said the terms of reference for the UK's abuse inquiry should include Kincora.
"I want to see a full investigation into the terrible abuses which occurred in Kincora," he said.
"Having received this communication from Sir Anthony, it is clear that the proper route to fully investigate the abuse at Kincora Boys' Home is to have it included in our United Kingdom's Child Abuse Inquiry."

It is with great regret that I announce the death of Gerry McKerr from Lurgan.
Gerry was one of the original “Hooded Men” and had been active in the Republican movement, since the mid 1960s.

Gerry was arrested and interned on Monday the 9th of August 1971.Early on the morning of 11th August Gerry and the others were hooded and handcuffed, bundled into a truck where they were kicked and beaten, and brought to a helicopter.
After a flight of 30-60 minutes, they were pulled out of the helicopter, beaten and put into another vehicle, which brought them to RAF Ballykelly.
At RAF Ballykelly, Gerry’s hood was tightened and he was beaten badly before being taken into a room with a noise similar to “a constant roar of steam escaping a valve from a steam boiler.”
He was given another physical examination, stripped, and issued a pair of army overalls that were far too small. He was put into the search position against the wall, his feet bare on a slippery floor.
After a period of time, he was no longer able to hold himself up, fell and passed out. He awoke while being beaten around the kidneys. This pattern continued for days.
Gerry was eventually given a pair of boots and taken back to a helicopter, beaten all the way. He was transported to a place where he was served with internment papers; he felt some sense of relief that although the beatings continued, he was no longer subjected to the wall-standing and other techniques.
At Ballykelly, the torture continued. Gerry found it much more difficult to keep track of time. The interrogations became much more violent, as he was threatened, abused and insulted each time before being taken back to what he began to refer to as the “music room.”
He was told that he would never see his wife and children again if he did not cooperate. I recall Gerry telling me, his thoughts at the time were “Hell dare not be like this,”
After several days, Gerry was finally allowed to sleep, given a meal, and permitted to wash up before being taken to Crumlin Gaol.
At the Gaol, all of the men experienced an air of jubilation that they were still alive and free of the torture. Gerry called it “an absolute high.” In mid-October 1971, the Hooded Men were transferred from Crumlin Road to Long Kesh internment camp, where Gerry served as OC.
Gerrard McKerr was released from Long Kesh in 1975. The last year of his interment he was sick, developing a number of lumps on his neck for which he was given antibiotics.
Upon his release, he was diagnosed with lymphoma.

Two years later, his wife called him to the door; there were some men who were looking for him. Gerry, sensing trouble, grabbed the first man and slammed the door; the second man fired a gun through the door, hitting Gerry in the abdomen and groin area.
He believed the perpetrators were members of the Glenanne gang, to which nearly 90 murders in the Armagh area were attributed, including those of the Miami Showband.
Six weeks later, when he was getting ready to take his children to school, Gerry found a bomb planted beneath his car. Gerry moved his family from their home to a new house in the town.
I was with Gerry the moment we received the news the Irish government would request the European courts reopen the case of the Hooded Men. He was delighted and said “Justice, finally we will get justice”.
I will ensure that Gerry will receive justice. The case will continue in his honour.
Our thoughts are with his wife Eileen and children at this sad time.
Jim McIlmurray
Case Coordinator
The Hooded Men
The late Gerry McKerr


The homeless executive - part of Dublin City Council, spend in the region of €100 million euros every year on 'homeless services'. Yet tonight, children and adults will be handed a sleeping bag and told to sleep in the parks. The emergency number for beds is turning people away saying there are no beds and there is great uncertainty. Meantime 600 dwellings belonging to Dublin City Council lie empty as well as hundreds of council houses and flats that are boarded up waiting to be demolished for 'rejuvenation' that may never take place.

These residences need to be opened up immediately and refurbished so as people can be afforded their very basic human rights. So what happens the €100 million? How much is spent on fat cat salaries? How many of these so called non government organisations that receive the grants actually spend it on the homeless and ending homelessness?? These charity organisations are simply carrying out Government remits and they employ hundreds of individuals with the money that needs to be spent directly on the homeless. The 'economy of the poor', the 'economy of the homeless' is solely for the benefit and upkeep of the many agencies that are now falling foul of their original intention and their christian duty. They are in effect 'poverty pimps' and an arm of Government and have simply agency captured a lucrative market for their own pseudo sentimentalized, spiritualized culture. The housing of people is not a charity and never can be, it is a fundamental human and civil right. Open up the boarded up houses in our country, cities and towns and give the people a home.Greece's PM Tsipras Accelerates Russia Meetup

Mannix Flynn

US lawmakers told of ‘dishonourable silence’ over acts of collusion in Troubles

Author Anne Cadwallader testifies before congressional panel on ‘Glennane’ killings
Simon Carswell

Congressman Brendan Boyle, a member of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe on Capitol Hill, described Anne Cadwallader’s evidence of collusion as “overwhelming”.
There has been “dishonourable silence” from the British government on evidence of deep collusion between the Northern Ireland security forces and Loyalist paramilitaries during the Troubles revealed in an investigative book, its author has told a US congressional panel.

Anne Cadwallader, a former journalist and researcher with human rights group, the Pat Finucane Centre, testified before the Commission on Security and Cooperation inEurope on Capitol Hill, discussing the findings in her 2013 book, Lethal Allies: British Collusion in Ireland.

The book covers the murders of more than 120 people from 1972 to 1978 in counties Tyrone, Armagh and Monaghan, providing evidence that Loyalists killers were helped by members of the Royal Ulster Constabulary and the Ulster Defence Regiment.

The murders were linked to the Glennane Gang in Tyrone and Mid-Ulster, a region that became known as the “Murder Triangle” during the 1970s because of the number of murders carried out on Catholics.

Ms Cadwallader testified before the committee, also known as the Helsinki Commission, about a bomb attack on the Step Inn bar in Keady, Co Armagh in August 1976 that killed two Catholics, mother of three Elizabeth McDonald (38) and Gerard McGleenan (22).

She told the committee that a paper trail has been found showing that the bomb was made, transported and detonated with the active involvement of members of the RUC, the police and the British Army.

“To this day, no one in authority has ever gone to any of the bereaved families or the injured to acknowledge the state’s involvement in these horrific crimes,” she told the committee. “The papers establishing the state’s guilt lay for over 30 years in locked police archives. Those who knew at the highest levels, and I mean the highest levels, must have hoped they would never be discovered.”

There has been “deafening silence” from the London government since her book was published, she said.

“It is, in my view, a most shabby, unworthy and dishonourable silence. The guilty silence of a disgraced establishment that hasn’t the courage to face the truth,” she said.

Ms Cadwallader appeared with Geraldine Finucane, widow of solicitor Pat Finucane who was murdered by Loyalists in 1989, and Kieran McEvoy, a law professor at Queen’s University Belfast.

The Pat Finucane Centre wants the British government to release all records showing collusion between the security forces and Loyalists and a public inquiry to be held into Mr Finucane’s killing.

The committee’s chairman, Congressman Chris Smith, remarked that the British government’s reputation had been tarnished by the refusal to hold a public inquiry into Mr Finucane’s murder and his committee was “not gonna let up” until all the information about the killing is “laid bare” and the people responsible are held to account.

“It is bewildering how a mature democracy like the United Kingdom could be so obstinate in not letting this information out,” said Mr Smith, who was chairing his 15th hearing since 1997 on human rights in Northern Ireland, nine of which involved members of the Finucane family providing testimony.

Congressman Brendan Boyle, a member of the commission, described Ms Cadwallader’s evidence of collusion as “overwhelming”.

“It’s time for Britain to finally deal openly and honestly with this issue and release all of the evidence,” he said.

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras reschedules meeting visit with Russian President Vladimir Putin for 8 April. Does this mean the indebted eurozone state could be the next Eurasian Economic Union member soon?

Greece Sailing Toward Eurasian Economic Union

Desperate for cash, and playing all the cards in his hands, Greece's newly elected PM is in a pinch. Having vowed to end austerity in his country, Tsipras is "all in" in a forieign policy game of high stakes poker between Greece, the EU, and unlikely table partner Russia. With a final installment of a €240 billion euro bailout in the offing, Greece must have a four month extension for the broke government to carry on.

News today that Tsipras bumped up his visit to meet with Russia's president by a month seems a sure sign the EU and Greece's biggest creditor Germany are not going to budge. The hasty revamp of the PM's schedule also foretells of just how sour negotions have turned since Greece's guru of finance Yanis Varoufakis began hammering out viable debt repayment options going forward. A stoic German position, and Greece's desire to breath some fresh air outside crippling austerity has led to the current situation. The rushed Russia meetings are actually the next logical progression of economic relations gone bad. First Germany said "no", then Greece said "please", and after more "no's" the Spartans demanded their gold back from the days of Nazi Germany. Tsipras has framed the hurried meetings as necessary to relieve "stifling economic conditions" set by Europe's creditors.

Beyond the war of words between Athens and Berlin though, the Great Game is still afoot in between world powers trying to soidify and extend inluence. Russia's worst critic in the region, US diplomat Victoria Nuland flew in for hastended talks with Greece’s foreign minister, Nikos Kotzias on the hurry up the other day. In the wake of that guarded discussion, Tsipras hopes tp meet with key partners in the European Commuission and with the European Central Bank tomorrow.

Alexis Tsipras - via FrangiscoDer and Creative Commons

This news, the latest up card in Greece's hand, will play out in front of German Chancellor Merkel in a meeting in Berlin on Monday next. With Nikos Kotzias having openly questioned EU sanctions agains Russia because of its annexation of Crimea, it's a safe bet Merkel, US President Barack Obama, and Vladimir Putin understand Greece and Tsipras (above) are no strangers to high stakes.

As for Greece dropping out of the EU and the eurozone, many experts say this is inevitable. Whether or not Alexis Tsipras and his ministers are prepared to give NATO heart palpatations by joining Putin's Eurasian Union, only time will tell. With ground breaking on the new Russia-Turkey pipeline project, and several eastern European players leaning heavily toward Russia these days, Greece going over to join Russia and the BRICs would be a foreign relations catastrophe for the western powers. If Greece does go, Bulagia, Serbia, and several others may well follow suit. On the "currency" side of things, many experts debate about the possible drachma's reintroduction if Greece dumps the euro and not the EU altogether. One big plus for Russia and rouble futures for this move would be, bargain basement export prices from Greece if their currency is devalued. The stimulus there, may just be enough to push Moscow into bailing out Athens.

This Speigel Online report frames the sitution fairly well if Russia and Greece do come to some agreement in April. Zero Hedge was spot on early in the new Greek adminitration's strategy in framing the Greek attitude at least. The point there being, with nothing much left to lose and no love lost between Greece and the EU, Russia could play out as the white knight for a country that was dealt a deadly economic blow. In the end however, all the experts are speculating today. What matters now is the last up card in this back and forth portrait of wheeling and dealing. On Russia's side? Well, this Pew Research Poll says the Greek people favor Russia over the EU 2 to 1. Looking at this report, it's also clear Russia's reputation is not as bad as the American perspective suggests. Even after a massive negative media onslaught these last 14 months the world tone on Russia is as equally postive as it is negative. This is actually fabulous if you're Putin and being assailed.

In the end it all comes down to Greece's leaer though. As a politician, Tsipras could do a lot worse than giving his people what they ask for.

Thursday, 19 March 2015


"Say It Ain't So, Joe, Again, and Again, and Again ..."

Joe Biden the American vice-President, stated from the Presidential Podium on St Patrick's Day,"If you're Orange, you're not welcome round here."

Most political analysts in Ireland, believe this is fallout, from the abusive treatment of the American Presidential Diplomat to Ireland, Richard Haass, sent packing, back to the USA, by the Orange Order, who destroyed the Irish Peace Process.
Irish Blog endorses Joe Biden, for the Presidency of the United States, in the next Presidential election and calls on the 80 million Irish Diaspora, to support him.The following poem, which is meant to be a joke, gives you an insight into the diaspora of the Orange Order. 

Susie Lee fell in love.
She planned to marry Joe.
She was so happy' bout it all,
she told her Pappy so.
Pappy told her, "Susie Gal,
you'll have to find another.
I'd just as soon yo' maw don't know,
but Joe is yo' half-brother."
So Susie forgot about her Joe
and planned to marry Will.
But, after telling Pappy this,
he said, "There's trouble still.
You can't marry Will, my gal,
and please don't tell yo' mother,
cause Will and Joe and several mo'
I know is yo' half-brother."
But Mama knew and said "Honey Child,
Do what makes yo' happy.
Marry Will or marry Joe,
you ain't no kin of Orange Pappy!

Check Site Below for Details. 

Censored by Britain in certain countries.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015




Gordon Bowden is an ex RAF officer who has spent the last 13 years uncovering detailed and forensic evidence of massive corruption within the British establishment that involves Lords, Politicians and the Monarchy.

The evidence that he is witnessed and recorded handing into the BBC to do their own full investigation, is set to reveal the biggest political corruption scandal in British history, that included the setup of a colossal 250,000 “shell virtual oil and gas companies” registered from a few house addresses in Finchley Rd London, and linked to the most prominent people at the core of the British establishment. These companies were deliberately set up to steal and rob BILLIONS UPON BILLIONS of pounds from the public and asset strip the whole country!


Gordon Bowden is an ex RAF officer who has spent the last 13 years uncovering detailed and forensic evidence of massive corruption within the British establishment that involves Lords, Politicians and the Monarchy. The evidence that he is witnessed and recorded handing into the BBC to do their own full investigation, is set to reveal the biggest political corruption scandal in British history, that included the setup of a colossal 250,000 “shell virtual oil and gas companies” registered from a few house addresses in Finchley Rd London, and linked to the most prominent people at the core of the British establishment. These companies were deliberately set up to steal and rob BILLIONS UPON BILLIONS of pounds from the public and asset strip the whole country!

The BBC must investigate this as they cannot have plausible deniability now they have clearly been shown the factual and forensic evidence that backs up Gordon Bowdens claims. We recently highlighted a story about David Cameron. Tony Blair and the Stolen Nuclear Bombs. Gordon Bowden confirms by his own investigations that this was also part of the massive corruption, money laundering and even murder committed by the organised criminal syndicate that has taken control of the levers of power in Britain. The police must now recognise that they are protecting a criminal cabal and start making arrests with the help of the British military if necessary. I questioned recently why Jack Straw and Sir Malcolm Rifkind jump ship so quickly and without the usual outraged denial we expect from politicians caught lining their own pockets, I think the reasons have now become obvious, in my opinion they are taking a “hit for the team” because they are afraid they may share the same fate as others and get all “suicidal” because they know too much. We all need to hold our politicians accountable on this corruption, and in the run up to the May election, we have the perfect opportunity to ask serious questions and demand full answers and not be distracted by talk of tuition fees and a few extra nurses. I would urge readers to share this information far and wide and prevent these crooked and corrupted criminals scurrying away into the darkness like cockroaches caught in the light.

The BBC must investigate this as they cannot have plausible deniability now they have clearly been shown the factual and forensic evidence that backs up Gordon Bowdens claims. We recently highlighted a story about David Cameron. Tony Blair and the Stolen Nuclear Bombs…

Gordon Bowden confirms by his own investigations that this was also part of the massive corruption, money laundering and even murder committed by the organised criminal syndicate that has taken control of the levers of power in Britain. The police must now recognise that they are protecting a criminal cabal and start making arrests with the help of the British military if necessary.

I questioned recently why Jack Straw and Sir Malcolm Rifkind jump ship so quickly and without the usual outraged denial we expect from politicians caught lining their own pockets, I think the reasons have now become obvious, in my opinion they are taking a “hit for the team” because they are afraid they may share the same fate as others and get all “suicidal” because they know too much.>By Bill Bigelow

The Real Irish American Story Not Taught in Schools

March 17, 2015 "ICH" - “Wear green on St. Patrick’s Day or get pinched.” That pretty much sums up the Irish-American “curriculum” that I learned when I was in school. Yes, I recall a nod to the so-called Potato Famine, but it was mentioned only in passing.

Sadly, today’s high school textbooks continue to largely ignore the famine, despite the fact that it was responsible for unimaginable suffering and the deaths of more than a million Irish peasants, and that it triggered the greatest wave of Irish immigration in U.S. history. Nor do textbooks make any attempt to help students link famines past and present.

Yet there is no shortage of material that can bring these dramatic events to life in the classroom. In my own high school social studies classes, I begin with Sinead O’Connor’s haunting rendition of “Skibbereen,” which includes the verse:

… Oh it’s well I do remember, that bleak

December day,

The landlord and the sheriff came, to drive

Us all away

They set my roof on fire, with their cursed

English spleen

And that’s another reason why I left old


By contrast, Holt McDougal’s U.S. history textbook The Americans, devotes a flat two sentences to “The Great Potato Famine.” Prentice Hall’s America: Pathways to the Present fails to offer a single quote from the time. The text calls the famine a “horrible disaster,” as if it were a natural calamity like an earthquake. And in an awful single paragraph, Houghton Mifflin’s The Enduring Vision: A History of the American People blames the “ravages of famine” simply on “a blight,” and the only contemporaneous quote comes, inappropriately, from a landlord, who describes the surviving tenants as “famished and ghastly skeletons.” Uniformly, social studies textbooks fail to allow the Irish to speak for themselves, to narrate their own horror.

These timid slivers of knowledge not only deprive students of rich lessons in Irish-American history, they exemplify much of what is wrong with today’s curricular reliance on corporate-produced textbooks..

To support the famine relief effort, British tax policy required landlords to pay the local taxes of their poorest tenant farmers, leading many landlords to forcibly evict struggling farmers and destroy their cottages in order to save money. From Hunger on Trial Teaching Activity.

First, does anyone really think that students will remember anything from the books’ dull and lifeless paragraphs? Today’s textbooks contain no stories of actual people. We meet no one, learn nothing of anyone’s life, encounter no injustice, no resistance. This is a curriculum bound for boredom. As someone who spent almost 30 years teaching high school social studies, I can testify that students will be unlikely to seek to learn more about events so emptied of drama, emotion, and humanity.

Nor do these texts raise any critical questions for students to consider. For example, it’s important for students to learn that the crop failure in Ireland affected only the potato—during the worst famine years, other food production was robust. Michael Pollan notes in The Botany of Desire, “Ireland’s was surely the biggest experiment in monoculture ever attempted and surely the most convincing proof of its folly.” But if only this one variety of potato, the Lumper, failed, and other crops thrived, why did people starve?

Thomas Gallagher points out in Paddy’s Lament, that during the first winter of famine, 1846-47, as perhaps 400,000 Irish peasants starved, landlords exported 17 million pounds sterling worth of grain, cattle, pigs, flour, eggs, and poultry—food that could have prevented those deaths. Throughout the famine, as Gallagher notes, there was an abundance of food produced in Ireland, yet the landlords exported it to markets abroad.

The school curriculum could and should ask students to reflect on the contradiction of starvation amidst plenty, on the ethics of food exports amidst famine. And it should ask why these patterns persist into our own time.

More than a century and a half after the “Great Famine,” we live with similar, perhaps even more glaring contradictions. Raj Patel opens his book, Stuffed and Starved: Markets, Power and the Hidden Battle for the World’s Food System: “Today, when we produce more food than ever before, more than one in ten people on Earth are hungry. The hunger of 800 million happens at the same time as another historical first: that they are outnumbered by the one billion people on this planet who are overweight.”

Patel’s book sets out to account for “the rot at the core of the modern food system.” This is a curricular journey that our students should also be on — reflecting on patterns of poverty, power, and inequality that stretch from 19th century Ireland to 21st century Africa, India, Appalachia, and Oakland; that explore what happens when food and land are regarded purely as commodities in a global system of profit.

But today’s corporate textbook-producers are no more interested in feeding student curiosity about this inequality than were British landlords interested in feeding Irish peasants. Take Pearson, the global publishing giant. At its website, the corporation announces (redundantly) that “we measure our progress against three key measures: earnings, cash and return on invested capital.” The Pearson empire had 2011 worldwide sales of more than $9 billion—that’s nine thousand million dollars, as I might tell my students. Multinationals like Pearson have no interest in promoting critical thinking about an economic system whose profit-first premises they embrace with gusto.

As mentioned, there is no absence of teaching materials on the Irish famine that can touch head and heart. In a role play, “Hunger on Trial,” that I wrote and taught to my own students in Portland, Oregon—included at the Zinn Education Project website— students investigate who or what was responsible for the famine. The British landlords, who demanded rent from the starving poor and exported other food crops? The British government, which allowed these food exports and offered scant aid to Irish peasants? The Anglican Church, which failed to denounce selfish landlords or to act on behalf of the poor? A system of distribution, which sacrificed Irish peasants to the logic of colonialism and the capitalist market?

These are rich and troubling ethical questions. They are exactly the kind of issues that fire students to life and allow them to see that history is not simply a chronology of dead facts stretching through time.

So go ahead: Have a Guinness, wear a bit of green, and put on the Chieftains. But let’s honor the Irish with our curiosity. Let’s make sure that our schools show some respect, by studying the social forces that starved and uprooted over a million Irish—and that are starving and uprooting people today.

Bill Bigelow taught high school social studies in Portland, Ore. for almost 30 years. He is the curriculum editor ofRethinking Schools magazine and co-director of the online Zinn Education Project, This project, inspired by the work of historian Howard Zinn, offers free materials to teach a fuller “people’s history” than is found in commercial textbooks. Bigelow is author or co-editor of numerous books, including
 A People’s History for the Classroom. and A People’s Curriculum for the Earth: Teaching About the Environmental Crisis.

See also -

Hunger on Trial: An Activity on the Irish Potato Famine and Its Meaning for Today

  • Tuesday, 17 March 2015



    First printed anonymously in an eight page pamphlet in 1799 it is without doubt, the greatest of all Robbie Burns satirical poems.
    It is the most brilliant assault ever delivered against the practical bigotry of the kirk.
    I stress that this is an attack against bigotry and hypocrisy as you will never find in any of Burns works a single word against religion
    Holy Willie's Prayer stands apart from other poems as it is far more universal in its implications. The reader needs no glosses, as he does to understand fully The Ordination and The Kirk's Alarm, and Holy Willie defines his own character as the poem proceeds so that it becomes irrelevant whether or not Burns was drawing a real person. Burns did, however, supply an argument in one of the manuscripts of the poem, and it is of some interest

    Holy Willie was a rather oldish bachelor elder, in the parish of Mauchline, and much and justly famed for that polemical chattering which ends in tippling orthodoxy, and for that spiritualized bawdry which refines to liquorish devotion. In a sessional process with a gentleman in Mauchline, a Mr. Gavin Hamilton, Holy Willie and his priest, Father Auld, after a full hearing in the Presbytery of Ayr, came off but second best, owing partly to the oratorical powers of Mr. Robert Aiken, Mr. Hamilton's counsel, but chiefly to Mr. Hamilton's being one of the most irreproachable and truly respectable characters in the country. On losing his process, the muse overheard him at his devotions.

    The story behind the poem is - Daddy Auld was a strict Calvanist minister in the parish of Mauchline. Willie Fisher ( Holy Willie ) was an elder of Daddy Auld's Kirk. Gavin Hamilton was a respected landlord and was almoner in the kirk. He had the job of collecting the penny fees from every parishioner but was of such a kindly heart that if someone honestly could not pay then Gavin Hamilton acted in a Christian manner by either letting them off or letting them pay later. As a result of this the money was short and the finger was pointed at Gavin Hamilton as having taken the money for his own ends. For this he was asked to appear before the Kirk Session to explain the shortage of money.
    Willie Fisher decided to spy on Gavin Hamilton to see if any other charges could be brought against him.
    These further charges were
    1. Setting of on a journey on the Sabbath.
    2. Not reading the Bible on a Sunday. ( How could he know that without watching his every move, every second of the day, even supposing he looked through the window of his house, which he probably did.)
    3. Digging his garden on the Sabbath. ( This is the reference to Kail and Potatoes in verse 13.
    Gavin Hamilton asked Aitken, a lawyer in Ayr, to defend him, and he won his case. The Kirk appealed to the presbytery and again Hamilton won. The Kirk finally appealed to the Synod of Glasgow and for a third time Hamilton won.
    This case would not have been a trifling local matter but would be known the length and breadth of Scotland at the time.
    Willie Fisher was broken man, and ended up found dead in a ditch with a bottle of whisky not far from his hand.

    The device of having Holy Willie condemn himself by reciting a prayer overheard by the reader is a simple one, but it enables Burns to achieve a crushing indictment of the Calvinist doctrine of election by showing the kind of hypocrisy such a belief forces on one who considers himself among the elect. The point of the poem is not simply that Holy Willie is a hypocrite, it is that some kind of unconscious hypocrisy is made inevitable by the views he professes. If you imagine you are predestined to salvation you become both self righteous and morally reckless, if, on the other hand, you believe that your lot is cast with the great majority of predestinately damned, then it does not matter how you behave. Either way your character is ruined.

    The poem never degenerates into farce or burlesque; the liturgical note is maintained throughout, but it becomes more monstrous as the poem progresses and the character of the speaker reveals itself, until, with that final "Amen, Amen" the whole religious tradition of which Holy Willie is the spokesman dissolves itself in irony.
    The first verse, with its slow movement and deliberate psalmlike opening, makes a point about the complacency of the speaker with powerful suddenness. The reader follows the solemn, religious diction until he finds himself, unaware, caught up in the calm statement that man's ultimate fate is arranged by God without reference to his behavior

    Holy Willie's Prayer
    And send the godly in a pet to pray - Pope

    O Thou, who in the heavens does dwell
    Who as it pleases best thysel
    Sends ane to heaven an' ten to hell
    A' for thy glory
    And no for ony gude or ill
    They've done afore Thee!

    That ane to heaven an' ten to hell, following so quietly and confidently on the invocation, is out almost before we grasp what has been said; and having absorbed this shock, we move, equally unsuspecting, into the two last lines, with their calm denial of the efficacy of good works.
    But Burns keeps a firm control over the poem, these sudden illuminations of the moral absurdity of the speaker's beliefs do not check the steady flow of prayer, and we can almost imagine the organ swelling in accompaniment (though Holy Willie himself would have disapproved of kists o' whistles) as he continues

    I bless and praise Thy matchless might
    When thousands Thou hast left in night
    That I am here afore Thy sight
    For gifts an grace
    A burning and a shining light
    To a' this place

    Again, we start off with a conventional religious line and suddenly find ourselves in the midst of an appalling self-righteousness. The significance of the second line does not fully hit us until we have come to the end of it, but we are left no time for exclamation, for the poem pushes steadily on, developing the self-righteous note.
    The third stanza, again echoing conventional religious phraseology, opens on a note of humility, but how deftly Burns has introduced that note in order to expose the absurdity of the doctrine of predestined damnation!

    What was I, or my generation
    That I should get sic exaltation
    I wha deserve most just damnation
    For broken laws
    Five thousand years ere my creation
    Thro' Adam's cause

    The apparent humility moves almost invisibly into self-congratulation, after painting a vivid picture of the pains of hell to which he might well have been consigned

    When I frae my mither's womb I fell
    Thou might hae plunged me deep in hell
    To gnash my gums, to weep and wail
    In burnin' lakes
    Where damned devils roar and yell
    Chain'd to their stakes

    He proceeds, in the fifth stanza, to congratulate himself that by the arbitrary favor of God, he has become a light unto the nations

    Yet I am here a chosen sample
    To show Thy grace is great and ample
    I'm here a pillar o' Thy temple
    Strong as a rock
    A guide, a buckler, and example
    To a' Thy flock

    The doctrine here is quite orthodox. A few are predestined to salvation by the freely vouchsafed grace of God, not because of any good they have done or may do, but in order to demonstrate that "thy grace is great and ample" It is only this relentless note of the purest self-righteousness that suggests the irony, the language is biblical, the sentiment in itself unimpeachable. Yet the quiet, complacent stanza tears the whole doctrine apart

    O' Lord, Thou kens what zeal I bear
    When drinkers drink, an' swearers swear
    An' singin' there, an' dancin' here
    Wi' great and sma'
    For I am keepit by Thy fear
    Free frae them a'

    In the sixth stanza the poem takes a new turn, and the note of confession succeeds the note of praise

    But yet, O Lord! confess I must
    At times I'm fashed wi' fleshly lust
    An' sometimes, too, in warldly trust
    Vile self gets in
    But Thou remembers we are dust
    Defil'd wi' sin

    This seems to be the note of true humility and repentance, but the specification of the sins of fleshly lust in the next two sanzas reveal the speaker as an excellent fornicator, whose excuse is that he was drunk. By this time Holy Willie has become a monster of hypocrisy, yet the responsibility is less his than that of the creed he professes

    O Lord! yestreen, Thou kens, wi' Meg
    Thy pardon I sincerely beg
    O! may't ne'er be a livin' plague
    To my dishonour
    An' I'll ne'er lift a lawless leg
    Again upon her

    Besides, I farther maun allow
    Wi' Leezie's lass three times I trow
    But Lord, that Friday I was fou
    When I cam near her
    Or else, Thou kens, Thy servant true
    Wad never steer her

    The peculiar effect of having Holy Willie call himself thy servant while confessing in bawdy detail to sordid acts of lust projects irony to the point where it becomes immensely comic.
    Holy Willie does not remain long in the confessional mood, the next stanza makes it clear that the confession was only the preliminary to another orgy of complacency, and we are left gasping at the way in which apparent humility again turns out to be self-righteosness

    Maybe Thou lets this fleshly thorn
    Buffet thy servant e'en and morn
    Lest he owre proud and high shou'd turn
    That he's sae gifted
    If sae, Thy han' maun e'en be borne
    Until Thou lift it

    By the end of this stanza Holy Willie has proved to himself that fleshly lusts are trials deliberately sent by God to prevent him from considering himself too superior to others, and the conclusion is that he is therefore resigning himself humbly to the will of God by enjoying those lusts is suggested by one deft phrase, perfectly proper and conventionally pious in itself, but monstrously absurd in the light of what has preceded it. Yet this monstrosity and this absurdity are never allowed to interfere with the placid flow of the prayer. Burns shows no awareness that by this time Holy Willie's creed has exploded in cosmic irony, and he increases the effect by his apparent indifference.
    The next six verses are directed against the enemies of Calvinist orthodoxy, in particular against Gavin Hamilton, and against Robert Aiken, who represented Hamilton in his fight with the Kirk Session and in the appeal from the Kirk Session's findings to the Presbytery. They maintain the poem on a high level of complacency and self-righteousness, and by sounding a note of moral indignation almost reminiscent of the Hebrew prophets make the speaker appear even more absurd. Here is personal spite and envy masquerading as prophetic fervor, and the result is ironical in the extreme

    Lord, bless Thy chosen in this place
    For here Thou hast a chosen race
    But God confound their stubborn face
    An' blast their name
    Wha bring thy elders to disgrace
    An' public shame

    Lord, mind Gaw'n Hamilton's deserts
    He drinks, an' swears, an' plays at cartes
    Yet has sae mony takin' arts
    Wi' great and sma'
    Frae God's ain priest the people's hearts
    He sMaroons awa'

    An' when we chasten'd him therefore
    Thou kens how he bred sic a splore
    An' set the warld in a roar
    O' laughing at us
    Curse Thou his basket and his store
    Kail an' potatoes

    Holy Willie's righteous indignation turns out to be spiteful rage at having been made a fool of, as well as having been defeated in legal argument

    Lord, hear my earnest cry and pray'r
    Against that Presbyt'ry o' Ayr
    Thy strong right hand, Lord, mak it bare
    Upo' their heads
    Lord, visit them, an' dinna spare
    For their misdeeds

    O Lord, my God! that glib-tongu'd Aiken
    My vera heart and flesh are quakin'
    To think how we stood sweatin', shakin'
    An' pish'd wi' dread
    While Auld, wi' hingin' lip, gaed snakin
    And hid his head

    This brief descent into vulgar colloquial diction must not be allowed to spoil the liturgical tone of the poem, and in the two concluding verses Burns is careful to make the hymn music swell out to a resounding climax

    Lord, in Thy day o' vengeance try him
    Lord, visit them wha did employ him
    And pass not in Thy mercy by them
    Nor hear their pray'r
    But for Thy people's sake destroy them
    An' dinna spare

    But, Lord, remember me an mine
    Wi' mercies temporal an' divine
    That I for grace an' gear may shine
    Excell'd by nane
    And a' the glory shall be Thine
    Amen, Amen

    This expression of personal spite and personal complacency in rousing religious language marks the climax of the poem not only terms of its structure but also in terms of the development of the irony. Such cunning touches as "grace and gear" are remarkably felicitous, once again, we hardly notice what the creature has said, so authentic is the religious tone, until he has moved on to the next part of his utterance. Having had his personal enemies destroyed and himself made conspicuous for both spiritual superiority and material prosperity, he is content to give the glory to God. The impertinence, the coolness of the proposition he makes to the Almighty, is staggering, and when this preposterous prayer crashes to its final close with the sounding twofold Amen, we are utterly overcome by this combination of self-interest and apparent piety. We have even a kind of admiration for the man who can combine the two with an air of such complete conviction. But there is certainly nothing left of his creed by the time the poem comes to an end.

    Students of English poetry who consider Browning the pioneer and most successful practitioner of the dramatic monologue might well consider Burns claim to the distinction on the basis of this one poem, in which, with perfect dramatic appropriateness, a character damns himself and his doctrine before the reader's eyes without being in the least aware that he has done so.
    In a satire as magnificent as this, any comment by the critic seem naive and irrelevant. Burns, though a craftsmanlike and often subtle poet, is never a difficult one. Holy Willie's Prayer reveals itself at once as a tremendous indictment of a kind of religion and of a kind of person. It needs to be read aloud with a good Scots accent an uninhibited pulpit eloquence in order to achieve its full effect, but even the reader unfamiliar with the sound of Scots speech can appreciate the poem's stature in a silent reading.
    It is one of the very few perfect satirical short poems.

    Holy Willie's Prayer features on my CD of Burns poems
    The Greatest Poems in the World.
    To read more about this Click Here.

    Epitaph on Holy Willie

    Holy Willie's sair-worn clay
    Tak's up its last abode
    His saul has ta'en some ither way
    I fear the left-hand road

    Stop! there he is, as sure's a gun
    Poor silly body, see him
    Nae wonder he's as black's the grun'
    Observe wha's standing wi' him

    Your brunstane devilship, I see
    Has got him there before ye
    But haud your nine-tailed cat a wee
    Till ance you ye heard my story

    Your pity I will not implore
    For pity ye hae nane
    Justice, alas! has gi'en him o'er
    And mercy's day is gane

    But here me, sir, deil as ye are
    Look something to your credit
    A coof like him wad stain your name
    If it were kent ye did it

    Blair's Wars Created Radicalized Muslims, Says Former Deputy PM

    By Telesu

    Lord John Prescott admitted that he and Tony Blair “were wrong” to invade Iraq.

    March 16, 2015 "ICH" - "Telesur" - A former U.K. deputy prime minister has accused Tony Blair of radicalizing young British Muslims with his “bloody crusades.”

    Speaking at fundraiser, Lord Prescott, who served as Blair's deputy, admitted that the pair “were wrong” to invade Iraq.

    “I was with Tony Blair on Iraq. We were wrong. They told us it wasn't regime change. It was. And that's exactly what the Americans have had. Now Tony, unfortunately is still in to that. I mean the way he's going now, he now wants to invade everywhere,” Prescott said in remarks made last month but which came to light over the weekend.

    “He should put a white coat on with a red cross and let's start the bloody crusades again,” he added.

    The veteran Labour politician went on to directly link Blair's invasions with young Muslims' joining violent Islamic groups.

    Lord Prescott added, “When I hear people talking about how people are radicalized, young Muslims. I'll tell you how they are radicalized. Every time they watch the television where their families are worried, their kids are being killed and murdered and rockets firing on all these people, that's what radicalizes them.”

    A number of young British Muslims have joined militant group Islamic State. Three young British men were stopped from entering Syria from Turkey Sunday, and three teenage girls remain missing.

    Blair could face war crimes charges once a heavily-delayed investigation into the Iraq War is published, the upper house of the U.K. Parliament was told earlier this year.

    Members of the House of Lords, led by Liberal Democrat peer Lord Hugh Dykes,posed questions about the Chilcot Inquiry, the British public inquiry into the nation’s role in the war in Iraq, and asked why its release has been prolonged by more than four years.

    Blair has been accused of war crimes, crimes against humanity, and human rights abuses for his decision to bring Britain into the Iraq War after it was revealed that there was no proof that the Middle Eastern country had weapons of mass destruction, nor that its then-president Saddam Hussein was involved in the 9/11 terror attacks.

    Campaign groups like “Arrest Blair” have long called for the former prime minister to be tried by the International Criminal Court, and have offered financial rewards to anyone who attempts a citizen's arrest on him.

    Monday, 16 March 2015


    If it wobbles like a duck, and quacks like duck, then it's a Duck. The Stormont Junta of both the DUP and British Sinn Fein are Tory Ducks. When the Tories quack, the Junta quacks. Both the working and middle class, are heading for dire poverty in Occupied Ireland, where the majority of both communities are about to become people of no property, with no political party to defend their interests, in a non-democratic junta, without an opposition. People will be forced to take to the streets, in the same numbers as in the south, to create real change and protect each others interests, with unity. There is no other alternative to unity, with authentic leadership, to defend their class interests. Both parties to the Junta, have proven their fake claims of leadership, with regard to their respective communities interests. People need to organize themselves, against the coming onslaught of poverty, homeleseness, lack of medical care and utility services, which are impending, for most working people in Ireland, to empower their own future.

    Power of Ten: How Neocons and the Fake-left Took Over British Establishment

    By Neil Clark 
    March 15, 2015 "
    ICH" - Forty years ago, Britain could be described as a vibrant democracy. Our parties lived up to their names: a conservative Party believed in conserving things, a Labour Party represented the interests of working people and a Liberal Party was liberal.
    We had a mixed economy, in which majority interests were put first, a sensible foreign policy - we pursued detente with the Soviet Union - and didn't seek to go around the world trying to stir up conflicts. The only foreign “wars” we got involved with in those days were the so-called “Cod Wars” with Iceland.
    Today, it's a very different story. Our political parties have converged around what author Tariq Ali has labelled “the extreme center.” The range of views which can be freely expressed in Britain without adverse personal consequences ensuing is narrowing by the day.
    Genuinely left-wing writers, who were regulars on television and in newspapers in the 70s, are now dissidents and subject to constant attack by obnoxious gatekeepers.
    “In politics as in journalism and the arts, it seems that dissent once tolerated in the 'mainstream' has regressed to a dissidence: a metaphoric underground”says John Pilger.
    Genuinely conservative writers - who reject endless war and crony capitalism - have also been marginalized. Instead we’ve got a political commentariat dominated by a smug, mutually-adoring clique of neocons and fake-leftists, all espousing the same Pentagon-friendly, crony capitalism-friendly views, and supporting the same“humanitarian” military “interventions.” We saw this new establishment orthodoxy in the way the “Iraq has WMDs which threaten the world” propaganda was peddled in the lead up to the illegal 2003 invasion, and we see it today in the promotion of a non-existence “threat” from Russia and the relentless demonization of Vladimir Putin. In 1975 we had a state that didn’t go to war, but which generously funded public libraries, today, in the words of Andrew Murray of the Stop the War coalition, we have a state that is big enough for a war, but too small to keep public libraries open.
    Anyone who dares step out of line and who challenges the “extreme center” faces attack from the cozy elite club that rules Britain today. The pressures on free-thinking journalists and politicians to conform to this new neocon/fake left “consensus” are enormous: a pernicious new McCarthyism worse than anything which took place in Britain in the old “Cold War” is at large. Tweet or say the wrong thing - and you’ll have the Extreme Center’s Thought Police on to you within minutes. And this harassment is carried out by people who claim to be “democrats” and who say they are opposed to “censorship” and totalitarianism.
    How did we get here? How was our country taken over by these people whose extremist pro-war views most certainly do not reflect the views of the majority of the British public?
    Well, here are 10 important events (in chronological order) in the takeover of Britain by the neocons and their faux-left allies. As you’ll see, it was in the 1980s that much of the damage was done.
    1. March 16, 1976: Harold Wilson announces his resignation as Prime Minister and Labour Party leader.
    Wilson’s resignation was a disaster for the left in Britain and for British democracy. He was an adroit political operator, (he won four general elections out of five) and had he stayed as Prime Minister and Labour leader he would probably have defeated Margaret Thatcher (see point 2) in the next general election. As it was, Wilson’s successor, James Callaghan, made some key mistakes that led to a long period of Conservative hegemony and the demise of the old British left.
    2. May 4, 1979: Margaret Thatcher becomes Prime Minister, following the Conservatives’ win in the general election.
    This marked the end of the genuinely progressive post-war consensus and a move to a new kind of politics - one in which elite interests came first. As I argued here, although Mrs Thatcher left power in 1990, her influence lives on; we are all still living in Thatcher’s Britain. Revealingly, Thatcher herself said that New Labour was her greatest achievement. She destroyed socialism, but she also destroyed genuine conservatism too.
    3. February 12, 1981: The Times, the leading British establishment newspaper, is bought by hard-right media baron Rupert Murdoch.
    Britain‘s newspaper of record, which dated back to 1785, followed a moderate right-of-center political line, but under Murdoch’s ownership, it morphed into a rabid neocon propaganda organ, playing a key role in disseminating the war party’s propaganda, as I highlighted here.
    In recent years, the paper has been beyond parody in its relentless pushing of the neocon/fake left agenda, beating the drums of war for western military “intervention” against Iraq, Libya and Syria. It was revealed in 2012 that Rupert Murdoch did meetwith Margaret Thatcher a few weeks before the Cabinet committee discussed the mogul’s bid for the Times and Sunday Times. “This direct personal lobbying was critical, as the government had the power to block his acquisition by referring the bid to the Monopolies and Mergers Commission… the government's subsequent refusal to do so paved the way for the creation of what is easily the largest newspaper group in Britain,” Alan Travis wrote in the Guardian.
    4. March 26, 1981: the formation of the Social Democratic Party (SDP).
    Today few people remember the so-called “Gang of Four” - a quartet of right-wing Labour politicians who broke away from the Labour Party in 1981 to form their own party. But the damage they did to the anti-Thatcher cause in Britain was enormous. The SDP crowd helped ensure re-election for Thatcher in 1983. Yes, they “broke the mold” of British politics, but not in a good way as they helped destroy the cause - social democracy - that they claimed to support.
    5. March 3, 1985: the defeat of the miners’ strike.
    Whatever one’s personal view of Arthur Scargill, the National Union of Mineworkers leader, the defeat of the miners - after a strike lasting one year - undoubtedly had devastating consequences, not just for the miners themselves but for British politics in general. It represented a victory of the forces of finance capital over organized labor and meant that the neo-liberal restructuring of the British economy, which had begun in 1979, could proceed at an even faster rate (see event 6). If the miners had won their battle the Iraq war, the privatization of the railways and “New Labour” would probably have never happened. Far from being a victory for “democracy” the defeat of the miners helped make Britain a less democratic country.
    6. 1986: Richard Ingrams stepping down as editor of leading satirical magazine Private Eye.
    Peter Cook, the comedian who owned Private Eye, was a true rebel. He once received a telephone call inviting him to a dinner party where Prince Andrew, the son of the Queen, and his bride-to-be Sarah Ferguson would be attending. “Oh, hang on, I’ll just check my diary,” he replied. “On dear, I find I’m watching television that night.” Ingrams was of a similar ilk - a self-described “conservative Christian anarchist” who really didn’t give a damn. But since 1986, under the editorship of Ian Hislop, the leading satirical magazine has become increasingly pro-Establishment; its targets are in general people who the new “Extreme Center” establishment doesn’t like much either, like George Galloway. It’s the pro-war ”left” and their neocon allies who satirists should be attacking - not their opponents, but in Britain today satirists defend the status quo.
    7. October 26, 1986. ‘Big Bang’- the Thatcher government’s deregulation of financial markets.
    The removal of sensible controls on the City of London ushered in the era of turbo-globalization and meant political power transferred from the ballot box to the new financial elites. Its effects on our democracy have been disastrous. A recent survey showed that almost half of the funds of the Conservative Party come from hedge funds. Before Thatcher’s reforms, Britain was a democracy; after the “Big Bang” it became a bankocracy.
    8. January 28, 1987: The removal of Alisdair Milne as Director-General of the BBC.
    Seumas Milne, Alisdair’s son, has written about this in depth here. The BBC had to start toeing the line of the “new” establishment in its political programs - and for future BBC executives, Milne’s removal was a warning from the government about lines which should not be crossed. A few months before Milne was pushed out, a former Times Newspapers managing director, Marmaduke Hussey, was appointed as Chairman of the BBC. On the night of Milne’s axing, media journalist Maggie Brown attended a function attended by Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.
    “I asked her what she thought of Milne's departure. She looked triumphant, flushed. ‘Talk to the chairman of the BBC,’ she said with a happy smile.”
    9. July 21, 1994. Tony Blair’s election as Labour Party leader and the birth of “New Labour.”
    Blair made the Labour Party acceptable to the new establishment - he got rid of Clause IV, - the party’s commitment to nationalization, in 1995 - and was rewarded with support from the Murdoch media empire. He led Britain into a series of“military interventions,” all cheered on by neocon/faux-left commentators who by now had become entrenched in the British media. Meanwhile, he ensured that there would be no return to the genuinely progressive post-war economic settlement which had served the interests of the majority of people so well. The railways remained privatized and received more taxpayers subsidies than in the days of British Rail, and PFI (Private Finance Initiative) expanded. The crony capitalists and endless war brigade were delighted that Britain’s Labour Party had been captured.
    10. December 18, 2007: The election of Nick Clegg, of the Orange Book faction, as Liberal Democrat leader.
    The Liberal Democrats fought the 2005 election on positions to the left of New Labour: they supported re-nationalization of the railways and opposed the Iraq war and still clung to a form of social democracy which Labour, under Blair, had deserted. But in 2007, this party was captured too by the “Extreme Center” with the election of banker’s son and enthusiastic neoliberal Nick Clegg as leader. In office, the Orange Book Lib Dems have carried on with the policies of war and privatization, policies which they were criticizing only a few years earlier. New Labour destroyed Iraq, the Lib Dems have helped destroy Libya and Syria.
    What a difference they made! But the neocons and faux-left establishment knew Clegg’s party wouldn’t make a difference, so they were happy for them to come to power.
    Neil Clark is a journalist, writer and broadcaster. His award winning blog can be found at Follow him on Twitter

    Sunday, 15 March 2015


    Lá Fhéile Pádraig sona daoibh 


    (law aila pawdrig suna deeve)

    Dance as if no one were watching,

    Sing as if no one were listening,

    And live every day as if it were your last.


    This petition seeks your support for a campaign to:

    * Persuade relevant authors, editors and website content providers to stop using the word ‘Famine’ for what took place in Ireland between 1845 and 1850, and start using terms such as, "The Great Hunger" or "An Gorta Mór".

    * To call on the Government of Ireland and its Ministers, and members of all political parties to correctly call it Án Ócras Mór, Án Gorta Mór, or The Great Hunger.

    It should be signed by anyone, of any religious, political or intellectual background, who wants the truth about Ireland’s history to be faced and justly discussed, not evaded or concealed.

    In proud and loving memory of the Men, Women and Children of Ireland who suffered and died in the Great Hunger.


    This petition has been launched by a Facebook group, Irish Holocaust - Not Famine. The Push to educate in Facts.

    Along side our website : 

    Our aims are dedicated to correcting and spreading the truth about what should rightfully be called not the ‘Great Famine’ but the Great Hunger (An Gorta Mór).

    A letter supported by the response to this petition will go to authors and editors of books on the ‘Famine’, and of works on Irish history which refer to the ‘Famine’. (This will include content providers of appropriate websites.) The letter will also go to Irish Government Ministers and Politicians of all hues.

    Why? To ask them to consider recent and ongoing research showing that the Great Hunger was the direct consequence of deliberate, intentional genocidal acts against the Irish people; and after they have done this, to acknowledge the overwhelming weight of the evidence that is being uncovered.

    Authors, editors etc could then make their acknowledgment clear to all by (e.g.) using the term ‘Great Hunger’ instead of or alongside terms such as ‘famine’, or by saying in the preface to a new edition of their work that, in the light of recent research, they feel the exclusive use of the word ‘famine’ to be misleading and distorting.

    Government Ministers and politicians could then speak out, with courage, about what took place between 1840 and 1845, and no longer dodge the issue in deference to the sensitivities of, "Other Governments".



    History books, text books and websites around the world still repeat and give life to the idea that the ‘Great Famine’ of 1845 – 1850 was a severe and prolonged food shortage arising purely from the effects of potato blight. This grossly distorts the truth: ‘famine’ implies that the food shortages arose simply from natural causes.

    In fact, armed British troops seized Ireland’s agricultural produce and exported it to Britain – while the Irish people were dying from starvation. There was no food shortage to blame on potato blight; exports of all food products from Ireland increased during the worst years of the ‘Famine’. Ireland actually produced sufficient food to feed its population twice over. Also, British troops and government officials blocked many attempts at relief from entering Ireland.

    The 1841 census recorded an Irish population of 8.2 million. By 1851, the figure had dropped by 26% to 6.5 million. These statistics give an indication of the scale of the disaster, but since many of those affected by the Great Hunger lived in remote and inaccessible places, it is possible far more died than has ever been thought.

    Today, what took place is increasingly being suspected by millions in Ireland and in the diaspora on reading the deluge of information being published by scholars of high renown. Increasing numbers of people worldwide want what they feel is a deliberate attempt to inflict genocide on the people of Ireland discussed and exposed and if true described as a crime against the people. People are now learning the knowledge that was withheld from them at school and questioning why our education system treats the subject as something not to be spoken of. That is not good enough. We need the truth, we need to know our history and until we know our past we are ignorant of the events of our own country. There was a food shortage in potatoes but people were abandoned by government and the first duty of government is the welfare of it's people. Britain failed miserably and the question is, did they do it deliberately? The signatories of this petition seem to think so. They feel that sites using this tragedy in our country as a present day Tourist attraction' and persist in using the word famine are wrong and are misleading.


    Every name added to this petition will make even stronger the case for using terms such as the Great Hunger – terms which admit, instead of denying, the truth of what took place. Only when the word ‘Famine’ has been abandoned will future generations describe what took place for what it truly was, failure of government and continued questioning as to the real motive for the neglect of millions. Was it genocide? many think it was. If so, stop describing it as famine.

    Add your signature – help the truth be known by everyone.

    This is the link - it only takes seconds to put yr name on it -