3 December 2009 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

State agencies must be accountable and transparent

NEWS that loss of life had been averted in two separate incidents recently in Belfast and Fermanagh will have been greeted with both a sense of relief and heightened anxiety as to the current political environment.
It is in the context of this anxiety that unconfirmed reports of the involvement of under-cover British military agencies in the Fermanagh incident must be seen.
When questioned about this matter the new PSNI chief constable refused to comment or be drawn.
Our history tells us, and more recent incidents across the globe inform us, that it is precisely when anxieties are heightened and we feel at risk that we must have accountability and transparency. And most importantly that human rights be promoted and protected.
We must not slip back to the days of no accountability in the name of ‘security’.
We know that when that is facilitated, state abuses will inevitably follow.
Indeed many state human rights abuses have still to be accounted for in inquest courts which have yet to hear the circumstances of over 30 deaths where the British state was implicated during our most recent conflict.
During our conflict independent observers including the UN and Amnesty International stated that actions by agents of the state led to abuses which sustained and fuelled our conflict. It was the lack of accountability and transparency of the entire system which facilitated this for so long and gave it legal cover.
Now that an emergent and fragile peace is in place all of us are charged with ensuring that conflict does not happen again. State agencies must be accountable and transparent as a corner stone of that foundation of responsibility. Human rights are not just of worth when it is easy, they are of highest value when the times get tough and some choose to undermine them.
Leas Stiúrthóir,
Relatives for Justice,
235a Falls Road,


World Cup woes

OBVIOUSLY Feilim from Cavan (Mála Poist 26 November) hasn’t been to too many international soccer matches when he can blanket call the supporters of our national soccer team “beer-bellied, green shirt wearing weirdos. Eh we wear green shirts because that’s the colour our team play in! Now onto the beer bellied part, I have to admit I’m small for my weight but compared to the bellies I’ve seen heading to Croke Park for GAA and rugby matches I look like an Olympic sprinter.
The point of the complaints aimed at FIFA was that we were stopped from possibly going to the World Cup by two blatant hand balls that the officials missed. So, why don’t we have the right to ask FIFA for a replay? Other countries have appealed decisions.
Going by the letters in last week’s paper Roy ‘the traitor’ Keane still has a fan club or we are heading back to the days of ‘the croppies lying down’, Stand up for the Boys in Green!

I AM writing with disappointment with the two letters in the last edition regarding how Ireland fans move on after Thierry Henry ‘cheating’ (sic) Ireland out of the world cup. I must point out that not all those who still haven’t moved on are ‘beer bellied, green shirt wearing weirdos’.
I really though take exception to Feilim McHugh telling me that football, the so called peoples game, is like politics and isn't fair especially when its a ‘Multi-million Euro Industry’.
So that's it, is is Feilim? All teams are equal but some are more equal than others, and us in the smaller nations should accept this? So with your analysis of how world football and politics are, Cuba should ‘get over’ the US embargo because hey ‘C’est la Vie’.
By e mail

THIS week’s efforts to get Ireland into the 2010 World Cup reached its most farcical point, with the Football Association of Ireland (FAI) begging FIFA President Sepp Blatter in a private meeting to include Ireland as the 33rd team in the World Cup finals, in what has now become an embarrassment to the Irish people.
One only has to log onto YouTube to see Blatter announce this Irish plea to a large conference of laughing journalists and officials.
When I think of the images of protesting fans at the French Embassy in Dublin the night after the match, I could not help but think could people not have shown the same sense of injustice and energy at the underhand way in which the Lisbon Treaty was pasted into our Constitution?
Co. Laois.

An Phoblacht
44 Parnell Sq.
Dublin 1