Sunday, 21 April 2013

Spanish Civil War – Belfast Commemoration Mural

© Joe ÓNéill
L-R Gerard Murray, (Teach Na Fáilte) and historian, John Quinn.

“It isn’t often you hear the Wolff Tone Commemoration, Shankill Road Belfast Branch, and Bodenstown”, mentioned in the same sentence, said Gerard Murray, Representative of Teach Na Fáilte, as he delivered the opening remarks at the official unveiling of the mural to commemorate men from Belfast, who fought on the Republican side during the Spanish Civil War.

The mural, by artist Francis Maher, is based on an iconic photo of Belfast socialists who marched at the Republican Bodenstown Commemoration in 1934. Many of these men were prominent in organising the Outdoor Relief Strikes in 1932, when the working class from the Shankill and the Falls roads in Belfast, united to fight for better wages and conditions for the thousands of unemployed put to work on the Stormont government’s Outdoor Relief Projects. Many of these men from the Socialist movement, who sailed to Spain, gave their lives in defence of the Spanish Republic alongside IRA veterans from all 32 counties.

The mural is located on Northumberland Street which connects the Shankill and Falls roads.

Viva la Quince Brigada 
by Christy Moore

Saturday, 2 February 2013

Gong Hey Fat Choy - Ó Béal Feirste

© Joe ÓNéill
Gong Hey Fat Choy @Belfast City Hall

There they go again. The elected tyrants in Belfast City Hall. Celebrating a Chinese heathen festival at our City Hall, in “Our Wee Country”. Where is it all going to end, I ask myself? 
Down with this sort of thing!

Monday, 21 January 2013

Happy Martin Luther King Day!

© Joe ÓNéill MLK Annual March & Celebration San Francisco

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Peter Robinson – Willie Frazer - Veterans of Foreign Wars

Our two intrepid Heroes 
Peter Robinson (Inset) & Willie Frazer, being restrained by the PSNI
Monkey See, Monkey Do 

The Minister for Justice in the Irish Republic, Alan Shatter, has said the Gardai, (Irish Police) are ready for any eventuality that may occur when an estimated 150 Loyalists protestors are to descend on Dublin this Saturday, to demand that the Irish flag be removed from the Irish Parliament Building, Leinster House. 
The march is to be organised by a new grouping, “People’s Forum” one of whose leaders, Willie Frazer, led the “Love Ulster” march in Dublin over 6 years ago, which left a trail of looting, public disorder, and rioting in Dublin’s city centre.
Loyalists have been protesting across Northern Ireland since December 3, when the Belfast City Council voted to fly the Union flag on designated days only, as opposed to the previous policy of the year round.
Seems like in Northern Ireland history keeps repeating itself. First Minister in the Northern Ireland Executive, Peter Robinson, was also fond of the odd incursion into “enemy territory”. (See his Wikipedia profile below)
Perhaps when all is said and done, this is only a case of monkey see, monkey do.

Invasion of Clontibret
On 7 August 1986, in protest at the Anglo-Irish Agreement, Robinson led a group of 500 loyalists into the village of Clontibret in County Monaghan in the Republic of Ireland. The loyalists attacked the unmanned Garda station in the village and daubbed loyalist slogans on the walls. They then held a quasi-military parade along the main street and attacked two Gardaí. More Gardaí arrived shortly after and fired shots in the air, scattering the loyalist crowd. Robinson was arrested and held at Monaghan Garda station. He pleaded guilty to unlawful assembly and was fined IR£17500 in a Drogheda court to escape a prison sentence. As a result, Robinson briefly resigned from the DUP deputy leadership.[22] There was also violence both before and after a court appearance in Dundalk, including Ian Paisley being attacked with stones and petrol bombs after Jim Wells and other Robinson supporters waved flags and sang Loyalist songs.[23] At his trial the judge described him as "a senior extremist politician".[24][25]