Tomás Ó Flatharta

Looking at Things from the Left

Archive for the ‘Six County State’ Category

Plain Speaking About Torture – Ireland’s Hooded Men Betrayed

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Hooded Men

On Tuesday March 20 2018 the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) decided that in August 1971, during an Internment Operation in the six counties of Northern Ireland, the British State did not torture a group of “Hooded Men”.  In plain language the ECHR says the British State did not, in this instance, deliberately inflict pain on captive persons.

Is that credible?  Consider this :

Former British Foreign Secretary David Miliband Linked With Torture in Sri Lanka

Gareth Pierce is a distinguished human rights lawyer who helped free Irish people wrongly convicted by the British government. She wrote: “Torture is the deliberate infliction of pain by a state on captive persons. It is prohibited and so is the use of its product. The UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment emphasises that there are no exceptional circumstances at all justifying its use” According to Pierce, the British, during the Mandate period in Palestine, in Kenya and Northern Ireland mastered the art of the “lesser” tradition of stress torture, forced standing, forced sitting and choking with water, exposure to extremes of heat and cold, and suspension. “These tortures were clean and allowed for plausible denial not because they are less painful, but because they leave less of a visible mark.” Nonetheless, these tortures produce agonising muscle pain. The kidneys eventually shut down.

Amnesty International describes what the British State did to the Hooded Men in 1971 :

Amnesty International comments on a “disappointing” ruling

The detained men were interned in 1971, and subjected to sustained interrogation by the British Army and Royal Ulster Constabulary, involving the ‘five techniques’ of hooding, stress positions, white noise, sleep deprivation, and deprivation of food and water. These were combined with physical assaults and death threats, which the Court did not consider in its 1978 ruling.

Amnesty International’s full statement is, as Oscar Wilde might say, disappointing.

This ECHR ruling is careless – those six judges who left the British State off the hook don’t even know what torture looks like.

The surviving hooded men will not give up. Why should they? They were tortured.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Written by tomasoflatharta

Mar 20, 2018 at 11:51 pm

Mr Paisley Meets the Trumps – A fabulous gift 🎁 from the Irish Peace Process

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Another fabulous gift 🎁 from the Irish Peace Process : Far-right reactionaries Ian Paisley and Donald Trump schmooze at the Washington DC Patrick’s Day Parties and get away with it – corruption, hate, misogyny, warmongers, eyes wide shut :

“It is understood no DUP figures are set to attend St Patrick’s parades on Saturday.

Accompanying Mr Dodds on the American trip is his wife Diane, one of the Province’s three MEPs.

Also with them are Paul Givan and Edwin Poots, MLAs for Lagan Valley, and Jonathan Buckley, MLA for Upper Bann.

Mr Paisley and Mr Givan were pictured meeting Donald Trump himself during a lunch on Thursday.

Mr Dodds’ trip is funded by Parliament, and his wife’s trip by the European Parliament; the other DUP delegates are there as guests of pro-life group “Family and Life”.

It is understood the fact that Ian Paisley was personally invited to a St Patrick’s lunch at the White House is because of a family connection to the Trumps.

A party spokesman suggested this may date back to a meeting Mr Trump had with Rev Ian Paisley concerning golf courses in Northern Ireland.

The Scotsman newspaper reported in January 2008 that Mr Trump and Rev Paisley had met the previous month in New York.

It also said that a meeting between Ian Paisley Junior and a key Trump business aide was thought to be scheduled in January 2008, at which the future of Runkerry golf course on the north Antrim coast was thought to have been up for discussion.”

 

Ian Paisley Cuts Deals in the Trump White House

Cash for Ash -Will the Stormont Sinn Féin-DUP Coalition be Incinerated?

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A BBC (Northern Ireland) news story offers a neat summary of the key issues in Belfast’s FosterGate : £400 million disappear into the pockets of Cash for Ash friends of the Stormont Peace Process Government.

Cash for Ash – Stormont Incinerated?

“It is estimated the way the scheme was set-up will cost taxpayers £400m over its 20-year lifetime.

Mr Bell told the BBC that top advisers from his DUP party stopped him from restricting the RHI scheme.

According to Mr Bell, the advisers, who deny the allegations against them, secretly tried to “cleanse the record” of references to Mrs Foster.

Those alleged attempts to alter the papers were made “without my knowledge, without my consent”, Mr Bell said, and were revealed to him by a senior civil servant at the department.

Read the rest of this entry »

In Derry, Pressure Mounts on Stormont First Minister Arlene Foster

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If Arlene Goes, so does her Deputy Martin McGuinness of Sinn Féin.

Goodbye Marlene?

Arlene Foster, First Minister, Under Pressure in Derry

Arlene needs to resign. Take to the streets! Demand her resignation!

People Before Profit have called a protest at the Guildhall, calling on Arlene Foster to resign over the Renewable Heat scandal. People are outraged because we’re told day in, day out that there is no money for benefits or for public services, but here we have £400 million wasted due to sheer incompetency.

Coming hot on the heels of the Social Investment Fund fiasco, it seems anything goes up on the Hill as long as DUP-Sinn Fein dominance is maintained.

The Coalition partners stage occasional sham fights to maintain credibility. But mostly they are watching and scratching one another’s back.

Sinn Fein goes easy on the DUP now, perhaps remembering how helpful the DUP was two years ago when Spotlight exposed a phoney “research” organisation which Sinn Fein had used to claim a staggering £700,000 in “expenses.”

In the last three years, the DUP has had involvement in the Red Sky affair, the Nama scandal, the SIF/Charter NI fiasco and now the bonfire of public-money that is the Renewable Heat scheme.

But the Assembly hasn’t laid a glove on either wing of the Executive.

None of this is accidental. The Stormont structures are designed to sustain a system based on the idea of communal solidarity. Bread and butter issues don’t figure when it comes to forming or getting rid of a government. In practice, it is permissible to plunder the public finances – but not to upset the Orange-Green balance.

Working-class people should take a hard look at the parties which have either been involved in or turned a blind eye to these events.

Arlene Foster is unfit for office. She should resign without further ado.

Join us at the Guildhall, 5pm – Friday December 16″

Gerry Adams and the Sons of former Portlaoise Prison Officer Brian Stack, Killed by the IRA in 1983

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Many of my friends may be surprised, but I think Gerry Adams is telling the truth about his encounters with the sons of Brian Stack, a Portlaoise Prison Officer killed by the IRA in 1983.

Austin Stack probably gave the names of alleged 1983 IRA killers of his father Brian Stack (a prison officer) to the Sinn Féin President, not the other way around. That explains the Gerry Adams email to Garda boss Nóirín O’Sullivan on this matter.

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Super Chairperson Joe Kelly – What is the Statement behind Your Question? A Frank Discussion About the Irish Peace Process With John Meehan and Killian Forde

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Thoughts of Chairperson Joe Kelly, April 8 1938 – December 7 2016.

Phrases that came immediately to mind :

How’s Your Love Life?”

What is the statement behind your question?”

Are there any loose people in the room?”

What’s your point?”

If I can’t dance, I don’t want to be part of your revolution” [borrowed from Emma Goldman]

Can we break up into small groups?per33

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Joe Kelly voted No to the deletion of Articles 2 and 3 from the Irish Constitution in a 1998 Referendum, a very unopular decision – only 5 per cent of the voters wanted to keep these Articles.

Joe was very troubled about this and discussed it often with me.  Being the man he was, he organised a broadcast radio discussion between me and a then Sinn Féin member of Dublin City Council Killian Forde.

Here is a transcript :  Read the rest of this entry »

Gerry Adams: G8 will advertise County Fermanagh

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http://www.impartialreporter.com/news/g8-lough-erne/articles/2013/04/21/400658-adams-g8-will-advertise-county/

Lords and Ladies of Austerity from the G 8 – Obama of the USA; Cameron of Britain; Merkel of Germany; Lagarde of the International Monetary Fund; assorted other “Masters of the Universe”: all heading for the “dreary steeples” of Fermanagh in July 2013.  The local police have promised to have extra prison cells ready for protestors.  Politicians practice the ancient Irish art of “tugging the forelock” – Gerry Adams leads the way!