Saturday, July 13, 2019

329 Years After Defeat at the Battle of the Boyne, A United Ireland Approaches

Source: Fort Russ

A Communique from New Resistance

By FRN Editorial Board | Jul 13, 2019

Official Communique from New Resistance, published in parallel by the FRN Editorial Board

July 12th marks the day when, three-hundred and twenty-nine years ago in 1690, the English had mustered a largely Protestant Scottish force and invaded Ireland. This was the Battle of the Boyne, and the consequences of the Irish defeat would signal the start of a centuries-long fight for Irish national liberation against the English.

The following several centuries would see an Ireland in a state of opposition to this subjugation by Britain – that is, until 1921, when Ireland's nationalist and socialist guerrilla war would find relative success in the creation of the Irish Free State, and then in 1937 with the new constitution that gave it the title, Republic of Ireland.

Since July 12th 1690, and the travesties that it brought, good and moral people, people of conscience around the world, have supported the plight of the Irish against English domination. And this plight has found continual success, and what remains now is the final liberation of the northern counties from British domination. This would make a single and unified Republic of Ireland. It would make it a finalized version of the reality that it is already becoming. What we mean by this, will be explored in this piece.

Centuries of Resistance have paid off – A Unified Ireland is more a reality today than ever before

The momentum and weight of all historical factors is on the side of a unified Republic of Ireland – and yet this is merely an opportune reality. For if it were not in the cards, as it appeared not to be for centuries, it would still be the correct and noble fight. It is therefore both a practical and fortunate matter that the factors to realize what is right, and the fight for what is right, have lined up so evenly.

And so this day, July 12th, celebrated only by a sad and losing few Ulster sectarians, whose psychological disorder as a bona fide case of collective Stockholm syndrome, is on display. Their disturbed self-hating bi-polar sentiments as the loyal Queen's subjects on Tuesday, and then spiteful at the Queen's betrayal on Wednesday, are evident.

Indeed today among young self-identifying Ulster Protestants, is a growing sense of betrayal by the Queen, and Ulster Unionism/Royalism has continued to fracture in two directions. An increasing disassociation with the history of England has risen on the one side, leading towards mainstream Irish sentiments, and a fracture among Ulster militants that has arisen between Unionism/Royalism on the one hand, and Ulster Nationalism on the other – with Ulster Nationalism representing an increased disassociation with feelings of Britishness.

While these sentiments have been brewing for nearly a century, the social and economic conditions which the Queen has chosen suitable for her most loyal subjects, has done more harm for their cause than the success of the Republic of Ireland, on the island known as Ireland. For now, there is no real consensus among the Ulsters except for their religio-ethnic hatred for Catholics.

This Ulster psychological defect stands in marked contrast with the healthy sentiments of Irish and Scottish alike, who in their respective countries, place their national characteristics far head of their ostensible religious ones.

'Ulster Identity – Made in England ®

Where the realization that the UK cares nothing for the self-identifying Ulsters of Northern Ireland should land on, is the idea that Ireland united, is a stronger Ireland for all. Indeed, the 5-10 percent of protestants that make up the Republic of Ireland feel no less Irish than the 75% or so Catholics. Likewise, the 16% or so of Catholics in Scotland feel neither Italian nor Irish, but entirely Scottish.

The economic and social realities of the abuse of Ulsters (and all of Northern Ireland, Catholic and Protestant alike) by the Crown and Westminster, have led towards a desire to see a more independent Ulster.

Arguments for an independent Scotland find support among the Irish, and a disavowal of the crimes of England in Ireland, which only made use of subservient Scots, is the common sentiment in Scotland. But an independent Ulster is an historical and philosophical non-starter.

It would, first of all, be an ultimate error to associate Protestantism in Ireland with pro-Ulster sentiments. In the Republic of Ireland, the Protestants are Irish first. However, the term 'Ulster' is, and foreseeably will remain, a term intractably tied to the history of the Crown's invasion of 1690, and its establishment of the Plantation of Ulster.

What we have then in the north of Ireland, is an identity in Northern Ireland where some hold-out minority within what is only 48% of the population of these 6 counties, who suffer under the delusion of an identity which was socially constructed and reinforced by Westminster. But that 48% of protestants in the 6 counties in the north of Ireland, increasingly feel Irish, and think like Irish. Meanwhile, 75% in the Northern Ireland city of Derry are Catholic and furthermore reinforce these predominating Irish sentiments. In Belfast the Catholic population tends to be younger and has grown to 49% of the population while the Protestant population tends to be older, dropping to 42% this year.

Most nominally Protestant people in Northern Ireland who are the descendants of the Royal forces used to subjugate Ireland in 1690, are not particularly political, have opinions in passing, and – like most people – juggle multiple identities. They can be, and feel, simultaneously Protestant and Irish; British and yet have an Irish-national identity. Secular realism, and Irish republican ideas tend to rise, while the obscure and overly contingent (upon factors no longer really in play) identity of the Ulsterman or Unionist is on the decline.

And this number is declining, quite quickly, both due to low birth rates and changes in self-identity. For the idea in Northern Ireland that Protestantism makes one a Unionist, Ulstermen, or Royalist, has given way to increasing secularism and civic nationalism of an Irish type, among that demographic. And without that peculiar religious attachment – or rather a conflation of religion with a not-quite 'national identity', which is shared neither in the rest of Ireland nor in Scotland – we land upon an Irish identity; correctly and quite logically.

There is one truth, and a million and one ways to frame a lie

The one truth is a unified Republic of Ireland, encompassing all 32 historical counties, including the 6 in the north. Besides the fact that this is the emergent reality that needs to be reckoned with, it is the correct process on all levels – philosophically, morally, historically, and economically.

Everything besides this is a coded and malfeasant lie aimed, in desperation, at scuttling in some euphemism for the UK's presence and control in Northern Ireland. This may include ridiculous and unworkable calls for dominion status, or 'full independence' for Northern Ireland – even more so ridiculous and unworkable when these are termed ‘Republic of Ulster', 'Ulster Republic', 'Ulster Independence Movement' or any other historically moribund proposals mirroring the anti-national 'nationalism' of the Ulster Third Way.

Moves in 1998 towards more independence for Northern Ireland from Ulster nationalists and secular Irishmen in the 6 counties proved problematic for Westminster, and divided Ulster sentiments. The nominal changes were ultimately revoked a few years ago in 2017. This idea of a more thoroughly independent Northern Ireland fractured the Ulster movement, and worked in opposing directions at the same time.

You see, despite that Ulster nationalists broke with Ulster unionists to support increased independence for Northern Ireland, both the Unionists and Westminster correctly understood that this would not lead towards an thoroughly independent Ulster that the City of London could control through the financial sector, but rather – and ultimately – towards the unification of Ireland. That's why, among other reasons and in light of Brexit, Westminster revoked this in 2017.

It's no wonder then that Dublin found those moves towards more independence for Northern Ireland more favorable than not – the relationship between Dublin and Belfast would only deepen as a consequence.

On the one hand, it sought to reaffirm the status of Northern Ireland as separate from the Republic of Ireland – something that Ulsters could get behind. It also sought to deal with the political and economic nightmare which has been Northern Ireland's subservient relationship to Westminster as a continued part of the UK, but within the framework of the UK. This was a point, interestingly, that self-identifying Irish (whether secular, Protestant, or Catholic) could get behind, for many of the same reasons that Irish Republicans have been making about the travesty of Westminster's treatment of its royal subjects.

On the other hand, it appeared to move in the direction of political and economic autonomy from the UK, and towards something of a dominion or commonwealth status, like that of independent countries in the former British Empire, like Canada or Australia. But Northern Ireland isn't an island from events in its region, and isn't an island. Any moves that separate it politically and economically from Westminster, which even many Ulstermen (Unionists, 'British', Royalists, etc.) could get behind for practical and realistic reasons – inevitably bring it closer to Dublin. And that is the conundrum, the real problem that the Ulster hold-outs are facing today.

Those events showed, also, that the Ulster concept, name, and ideology is in continual disarray and meltdown. The Ulster identity is a unique and interesting one, and we are fast approaching a day when that identity will carry with it no harm, no foul, and no real problem. Because the reality is that the Republic of Ireland is winning the historical battle for a single, free, Ireland – and the threat posed historically by the Ulster mentality in the north, is quickly vanishing. As a minority in Northern Ireland, and a soon-to-be even greater minority in a unified Ireland, they will quickly disabuse themselves of any self-imposed minority mindset and join with the rest of Ireland's Protestants and simply consider themselves Irish, with a sub-category or asterisk of some historic Ulster affinity and identity. That’s what truth and reconciliation will accomplish in a single unified Ireland, for the Irish – Catholic and Protestant, and secular. Indeed, that’s the entire concept and framing of the existing Republic of Ireland itself, hence the orange and the green in its standard.

The real problem is that the Protestants of Northern Ireland are a victim of the British imposed educational system. This indoctrination stands at total odds with the socio-economic realities imposed on Protestants and Catholics alike in Northern Ireland. Thus, while they understand from a socio-economic perspective that being a part of the UK, in the status that they now have, has been a disaster for them – they cannot overcome the brainwashing instilled prejudice against the Irish, they cannot overcome an affinity with the history of Unionism and Royalism in Northern Ireland, they cannot overcome their actual hatred (even if self-hatred) for the Irish.

For if they could overcome this psychological stumbling block, they would realize that the correct, honest, true, and natural course is the unification of Belfast with Dublin.

In truth, however, it was formations like the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland that emerged in the 70's which proposed a break-through around the ethnic divisions of remaining in the UK, and proposed a politics based in the economics of the question. That one or two individuals in the north of Ireland today believe this should more properly be smuggled into an Ulster nationalism line, only speaks to the state of moribund decadence of this failed identity.

Please go to Fort Russ to read the remainder of this hugely important essay.


Source: The Electronic Intifada

Battle underway in Ireland over ban on settlement goods

By Ciaran Tierney | The Electronic Intifada | 11 July 2019

The Irish government is using an obscure measure to block a bill that would ban imports from Israeli settlements. (Niall Carson ZUMA Press)

A battle is underway in Ireland to ensure that a ban on imports from Israel's settlements in the occupied West Bank will not be vetoed.

Legislation to introduce such a ban has received majority support in both houses of Ireland’s parliament, the Oireachtas. Yet the country's government is expected to try and wreck the legislation by invoking the little known "money message" provision.

"Money messages" rely on a clause in the Irish constitution which states that no law involving the expenditure of public finance will be enacted unless it has been signed by the taoiseach, the country's prime minister.

A paper drawn up by Michael McDowell, a prominent Irish lawyer and politician, insists that the legislation banning Israel's settlement goods does not require approval via a "money message."

The Occupied Territories Bill – as the legislation on settlement goods is called – "does not entail any direct expenditure and instead involves the creation of a criminal offense," McDowell's paper states.

Approximately 50 bills are stalled in Dáil Eireann, the lower house in the Oireachtas, as they are awaiting a "money message."

Although the "money message" provision has long been in existence, it has only become controversial lately as Ireland's minority government has been using it to block legislation which commands majority support in the Oireachtas.

Earlier this month, the government refused to issue a "money message" for the Climate Emergency Measures Bill aimed at halting oil and gas exploration in the nation's waters. Simon Coveney, the foreign minister, indicated in January that he would seek to obstruct the Occupied Territories Bill by the same means.

McDowell's paper argues that the rule of procedure under which these bills are blocked goes further than the "money message" clause in the Irish constitution. The rules of procedure can be changed, according to McDowell, who has formerly been the tánaiste – Ireland's deputy prime minister – and the attorney general.

"World is watching"

Ireland's political leaders have been under pressure from Israel and its lobbyists – including some members of the US Congress – to thwart the Occupied Territories Bill.

Yet support for the bill has remained solid among elected representatives in Dublin.

Niall Collins, foreign affairs spokesperson with the main opposition party Fianna Fáil, said that an independent legal adviser to the Oireachtas will soon provide an opinion about the use of "money messages." The opinion is expected to be delivered in the autumn.

"This money message mechanism does have a role to play, as it stops a populist headbanger from coming forward with crazy promises which would incur a huge cost to the Irish state," said Collins. "But the mechanism is open to abuse and this government has clearly been abusing it."

Please go to The Electronic Intifada to read the entire article.

Related with some astonishing history of Ireland showing that the Battle of the Boyne was a ritual battle and that an actual battle never took place.

Ireland Land of the Pharaohs - Andrew Power interview 

IRELAND: Land of the Pharaohs by Andrew Power

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