17 April 2008 Edition
Cuireann An Phoblacht fáilte roimh litreacha ónár léitheoirí. Scríobh i nGaeilge nó i mBéarla, 200 focal ar a méid. Déantar giorrú ar litreachta más gá. Cuir do litir chuig [email protected]
An Phoblacht welcomes readers’ letters. Write in Irish or English, 200 words maximum. Letters may be edited for brevity. Send your letters to [email protected] No attachments please
A bit of advice for Paul Williams
WATCHING the last episode of Dirty Money, on TV3, I made up my mind that it was nothing more than couch journalism-cum-story-telling by Paul Williams. It made me angry because the man seems unable to distinguish fact from fiction, as was obvious by the lack of clarity and truth.
It was also obvious that Paul Williams was used to further an agenda being pushed by so-called spokesmen who appeared on the programme.
One was Kevin Sheehy, who served in the RUC, a force widely recognised as the most corrupt police in Europe and whose murderous activities struck fear into Catholic communities the length and breadth of the Six Counties for years but, in my view, was disbanded to create a grey area in case the British Government ever faced charges of directing terrorism.
Then on comes Fianna Fáil’s John O’Donoghue and current Justice Minister Brian Lenihan, whose party leader has had to resign amid all sorts of allegations. The Ray Burkes and Liam Lawlors – I will not even go there..... all members of the holier than thou Fianna Fáil party.
Then on comes Fine Gael former leader Alan Dukes brought back from the dead to contribute... well, nothing of any value (something Fine Gael is very good at). Williams was scraping the barrel with Ruairí Quinn. God it was worse than a crass reality TV show.
This programme was all about trying to stifle support for Sinn Féin by throwing mud indiscriminately and hoping that it sticks.
A bit of advice now for Paul Williams: If you want to make a name for yourself, go to Afghanistan, Beirut, or even Limerick – don’t piggy-bacon the goodwill of others.
Gort a’ Choirce,
Contae Dún nGall
From Deir Yassin to Gaza — The ethnic cleansing of Palestine
AS the British royal family and United States politicians, including the presidential hopefuls, prepare to take part in celebrations to mark the 60th anniversary of the founding of the state of Israel, it’s important to remind ourselves of the price paid for such an event.
The 9 of April is the anniversary of the most notorious of the ‘1948 massacres’ carried out against the Palestinian people by the newly-arrived Zionist ‘commandos’.
The village of Deir Yassin was not part of the territory the UN had marked out for the new Jewish state. It was situated in the hills between Jerusalem and what was to become Tel Aviv. Perhaps because of this, it came to the attention of the mainstream Jewish force, the Haganah, who marked it out for occupation according to their ‘Plan Dalet’ — the blueprint for ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians — which purposefully breached the UN agreement.
Two irregular Jewish terrorist forces, the Irgun (led by Menachem Begin) and the Stern Gang, were ordered to seize the village, which had always been peaceful. Over one hundred men, women and children were systematically murdered. Twenty-five survivors were paraded around Jerusalem and then taken to a quarry and killed. Fifty-three orphaned children were dumped along the wall of the Old City.
This and similar atrocities caused surviving Palestinians to flee to the crowded West Bank and Gaza Strip or abroad where they have languished in refugee camps for generations.
The siege of Gaza that we are witnessing today and the continuing expansion of illegal Jewish settlements on the West Bank are a continuation of ‘Plan Dalet’. Sixty years on, the Palestinians have little to celebrate.
CAITLIN Ní CHONAILL,
Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign,
9 University Street,
Belfast BT7 1FY
Dangerous implications of Lisbon Treaty
The core problem with the EU is the over-riding treaty commitment to “ever closer union”.
That means exactly what it says. Once any field of activity comes within the scope of the EU treaties, there can be no limit to the degree of integration. The process of “ever closer union” must grind on relentlessly, until every difference has been removed, and every exception to the EU norm has been eliminated.
So if the people of Ireland do not want to be drawn into an ever closer EU military alliance, eventually becoming a military union, they would be wise to nip that process in the bud. Which means exercising their right to veto the proposal that the EU should now start to take on the role of a military alliance, as per the mutual defence clause in the Lisbon Treaty.
Once that had happened, full participation in the military alliance would become the EU norm, and any member state which tried to uphold its tradition of neutrality would find itself in an increasingly anomalous and untenable position.
Just as nature abhors a vacuum, so by its present nature the EU abhors any anomaly. National exemptions are always viewed as no more than temporary expedients, never as part of a final settlement.
I WOULD like to applaud the efforts of Ógra Shinn Féin in the Six Counties in support of the party’s campaign against the Lisbon Treaty even though there will not be a vote in the North. I saw Ógra activists handing out leaflets at the Tyrone and Mayo game in Omagh last Sunday. This is a very imaginative way of ensuring that the message of the No campaign, the danger posed by Lisbon for Irish independence, public services and neutrality is delivered to voters at every opportunity and a practical demonstration of the merits of a 32 county party. Keep up the good work. A pity about the result.