28 February 2008 Edition

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Mála Poist

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


West Belfast remembers

FROM THURSDAY, 6 March to Sunday, 9 March we will commemorate  the 20th anniversary of a period in 1988 which will be forever etched in the minds of our community.
We will be commemorating the assassination of Maireád Farrell, Dan McCann and Seán Savage in Gibraltar.  These three unarmed IRA Volunteers were brutally shot down on 6 March 1988 by members of the British SAS operating under instructions from the  British Cabinet led by Margaret Thatcher.
Following the shootings in Gibraltar, Belfast IRA Volunteer Kevin McCracken was shot and killed by the British Army  while on active service in Turf Lodge on 14 March. We will commemorate Kevin.
We will also be commemorating Thomas McErlean, John Murray and Volunteer Caoimhín MacBrádaigh, who were gunned down while in courageous pursuit of unionist death squad member Michael Stone who attacked, with guns and grenades, the funeral on 16 March in Milltown Cemetery of the three Volunteers  killed at Gibraltar.
In the aftermath of the funeral of Caoimhín MacBrádaigh the SDLP deputy leader, Seamus Mallon, branded the people of West Belfast as  ‘savages’. Criminalisation of the nationalist community has long been a hallmark of anti-national political elements in our society.
As we look back 20 years to those painful days in March 1988 many of us will remember the intense feelings associated with this brutal period.
We will remember the great spirit of our community in its endeavour to bury our dead with dignity while we were being brutalised by the British army, the RUC and unionist death squads.
We will remember our anger at those who sought to demonise and criminalise us and we will remember the deep sense of purpose and vision which emanated from our community during those dark days.
That is why we are inviting you to join us at the events from Thursday, 6 March to Sunday, 9 March when we will commemorate the seven martyrs who died during the attack on our community. Beir Bua.
Gibraltar/Milltown, Commemoration, Committee.



The journalistic double standards of Kevin Myers 

IN A RECENT Indo rant, Kevin Myers attacked Eamon Dunphy and Frank Connolly for daring to write about corruption in government.
How can Myers credibly accuse any journalist of having “no more than gossip and tittle-tattle to relate – in other words, innuendo”?
Here’s what Judge Cory had to say about Kevin’s own speculation in “Cory Collusion Inquiry Report – Chief Superintendent Breen and  Superintendent Buchanan”:
“2.118 In summary, the investigations into the book Bandit Country and the article An Irishman’s Diary indicate that the authors’ allegations that there was a Garda mole or that a Garda member facilitated the murder of Officers Breen and Buchanan, appear to be based upon hypothesis, speculation and a source or sources of information that the authors refused to disclose. Statements and allegations were put forward as matters of fact when in reality they were founded upon speculation and hypothesis. It would have been preferable if the book and the article had made this clear. Fairness to the victims’ families demanded no less.
2.119 Every opportunity was afforded to the two journalists to assist the Gardaí with regard to an important aspect of the murders, not only of Breen and Buchanan, but of the Gibsons. Despite being given this opportunity, the authors failed to either disclose their sources of information or put forward any evidence.
2.120 I find that I cannot base any finding of collusion, or possible collusion, on the contents of either Harnden’s book Bandit Country or Myers’ article An Irishman’s Diary.


RTÉ sycophants

AIR traffic controllers this week called off plans for a 24-hour strike and an official overtime ban. The Labour Court has issued recommendations which may provide a solution to a dispute which has highlighted the need for more air traffic controllers for the increasingly crowded skies over Ireland, the central demand of the controllers’ trade union, IMPACT.
These professionals are well-paid – and so they should be. People who work on planes should also be paid well but we all know that pay and conditions on Ryanair are terrible and that unions are banned. Ryanair Chief Executive Michael O’Leary is one of the wealthiest men in the country. None of this you would know if you listened to Morning Ireland’s report on the air traffic control dispute. O’Leary called air traffic controllers “this bunch of over-paid, under-worked public servants”. He ranted about unions and lied about the earnings of air traffic controllers. Reporter Cathal Mac Coille did not once ask him about his anti-union company or about how big his salary is. In contrast, MacCoille interrogated IMPACT General Secretary Michael Landers and even handed over the questioning to O’Leary at one stage. It was yet another example of how O’Leary has been canonised by most of the media. With a mouth the size of an aircraft hangar and a jumbo-sized ego, he is irresistible to the sycophants of Montrose.
Mícheál MacDonncha,
Baile Átha Cliath 5.


An Phoblacht
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