Jun 13 2020

ONE MAN’S TERRORIST

Connor Beaton reviews One Man’s Terrorist by Dan Finn. This first appeared in Red Pepper.

 

 

ONE MAN’S TERRORIST – A POLITICAL HISTORY OF THE IRA

When the Irish government announced plans earlier this year to host a special commemorative event for members of the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) who were killed in the War of Independence, the backlash was immediate and spectacular. Having seized the initiative on the centenary of the Easter Rising just a few short years earlier, marking it with an extensive programme of high-profile, state-backed events and initiatives, ministers now scored a remarkable own goal and found themselves charged with apologism for British colonial violence in Ireland. Hurried clarifications and part-denials from Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan failed to stop ‘Come Out Ye Black and Tans’ from rocketing to the top of the Irish charts off the back of a spirited online campaign, and new cracks began to appear in an already fragile governing coalition between Fine Gael and the eclectic bunch of independent politicians in cabinet with them. Continue reading “ONE MAN’S TERRORIST”

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Nov 27 2014

A CONSTITUTION FOR THE COMMONWEALTH OF ENGLAND

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Steve Freeman is the convenor of the Constitutional Commission of the Left Unity Party (LUP). As a member of the Scottish Republican Yes Tendency, disbanded after September 18th, Steve has been arguing for the LUP to take proactive position on the issue of Scottish self-determination and in opposition to the Union.

Steve Freeman addressed last year’s RIC conference (http://republicancommunist.org/blog/2013/11/25/2nd-ric-conference-after-the-uk-the-future-of-4-nations/). Along with others from the Republican Socialist Alliance, Steve organised the ‘London Says Yes’ rally (see http://republicancommunist.org/blog/2014/09/10/to-scotland-with-love-a-report-from-the-london-says-yes-rally-on-september-6th/) on September 6th.

The LUP held its conference between November 15th- 16th conference, but the leadership ensured that the draft constitution was not taken. Despite the LUP leadership’s continued appeasement of British Left Unionism, these  proposals for a Commonwealth of England have attracted wider attention. There are now other socialist republicans in the Republican Socialist Alliance, A World to Win, open Democracy, Chartist and Red Pepper who do appreciate the significance of what has been and is happening in Scotland. They understand the need for a united struggle against the UK unionist state and its imperial alliance with the US.

Therefore, in the lead up to the to the third RIC conference, and the session entitled ‘Extending Scotland’s democratic revival – Linking up progressive movements across these islands’, Emancipation & Liberation is publishing the LUP Constitutional Committee’s draft Constitution for the Commonwealth of England. Steve Freeman will be at the RIC conference on November 22nd.

 

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DRAFT CONSTITUTION FOR THE COMMONWEALTH OF ENGLAND

Introduction

The Scottish referendum provided an opportunity for the largest constitutional change in the UK since 1922 when the Irish Free State was created. The Act of Union (1707) is one of the pillars of the British constitution and its abolition would have had major and unpredictable consequences for the rest of the UK. A majority of Scottish voters rejected this at least in part because of the promise of greater powers. This has heightened the imbalance in the UK constitution and the contradictions of having a semi-federal system as highlighted by the ‘West Lothian’ question in which Scottish MPs vote on matters which affect England and not Scotland (e.g. NHS).

Continue reading “A CONSTITUTION FOR THE COMMONWEALTH OF ENGLAND”

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Sep 10 2014

TO SCOTLAND WITH LOVE: A REPORT FROM THE ‘LONDON SAYS YES’ RALLY ON SEPTEMBER 6th

Mark France of Left Unity’s Scottish Republic Yes Tendency reports on a London meeting in solidarity with the Scottish independence campaign

A love letter from England

Sometimes a day is a long time in politics. On the morning of Saturday 6 September, as delegates were preparing for the TUC conference in Liverpool, thousands of other activists were descending on London for final leg of the People’s March for the NHS. Meanwhile a group of London-based socialists organised by the magazine Red Pepper were catching the 9.43am ‘Yes Train’ from Kings Cross to Edinburgh, to spend a weekend of solidarity activism supporting the Radical Independence Campaign’s work to maximise the Yes vote.

Continue reading “TO SCOTLAND WITH LOVE: A REPORT FROM THE ‘LONDON SAYS YES’ RALLY ON SEPTEMBER 6th”

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