Archive | December, 2016

Meeting with Regions representatives on housing a good starting point

29 Dec

Today local activists met with representatives from the Region with regards to their scandalous behavior whereby it gave directives to shelters to send people to the police station to sleep in lock-up for the night like criminals. Besides being locked up for the night people who use this service are searched, have their name run through CPIC for warrants, are under 24 hour video surveillance, and have safety checks run every half an hour. This directive was so shameful that it was explicitly written in the directive that this was to be secret and not appear in any policy papers etc., This explains why the Police are not tooting their own horn about a new program to help homeless people or some other shit.

After a prolonged period of political pressure inflicted by our team, the Region agreed to a meeting to hear our demands and discuss resolutions. We put forward two demands. The first demand was that jail cells no longer be offered as an alternative to shelter or housing, and that motel accommodations be provided when shelter were full, not cells! The resolution was designed to seek information from those currently being pushed into jails. The numbers of people accessing the police shelter accommodations would be assessed, as would their experiences. If the program was found to be failing in meeting the needs of service users, it would be scrapped. Our second demand was that a shelter be built that provided the same number of beds that were lost when Out of the Cold was lost and was staffed with social workers to get people into affordable housing. No agreement was reached, yet we are confident that through continued political pressure and dialogue we can achieve this second point.

Discussions will continue mid January to see what will happened to the lock up program and to continue discussing long term solutions to the housing crisis.

Our alternative to housing poor people in jail cells that we will present to the Region’s Chair on Housing on Dec.28th

27 Dec

On Dec. 28th we will be meeting with the Region’s Chair of housing to discuss alternatives to housing homeless people in the police jail cells, locking them up for the night with safety checks, which pretty much is how criminals are treated.

At this meeting we will be putting forward two demands that will solve this issue.

1. Build a shelter that has an equal or higher amount of beds then the amount of beds that have been lost with the closing of the Out of the Cold program. This shelter will be temporary in the sense that it will take the place of Out of the Cold and once people are in this shelter they will be given emergency assistance from social workers to get into affordable housing

2. That if their are no beds available at the shelter they be directed to the emergency motel program, which according to the Region’s Chair on Housing is what shelter workers are suppose to do. Further according to the Chair on housing this program has enough beds to house everyone so their is no need for anyone to be sent to jail to spend the night.

This meeting will take place at 10 am in the Regional Building and observers etc are welcome.

Alan Ryan Peoples Community Organization and 32CSM Int. Dept. host Christmas Eve dinner and direct action casework event.

27 Dec

Taking social responsibility and feeding the community on Christmas eve.

Taking social responsibility and feeding the community on Christmas eve.

On Christmas Eve a People’s Community Christmas Dinner and Direct Action was held in downtown Kitchener. This event was put on by the Alan Ryan People’s Community Organization and the 32CSM.

The purpose of this event was to give back to the community that has given so much to us and to take social responsibility for the dire poverty and violence in the downtown core. By doing this we demonstrate that its not good enough to sit on the sidelines and complain about the problems that we are facing but rather we as a community must identify the problems that we are facing through social investigation and implement solutions that benefit the class.

We served about 70 servings and were out of food in 20 minutes. We will in the new years start servings every Sunday at 4 at city hall as there are no soup Kitchens or meals in Kitchener on Sunday. We ask that people join us as we find solutions to the problems that face our community.

Region’s Chair office occupied demanding housing fit for human beings be provided to the poor as opposed to jail cells a success as we will meet with regions chair on housing on 28th to create alternatives.

23 Dec

Occupation inside Region of Waterloo Chair Ken Seiling's office

Occupation inside Region of Waterloo Chair Ken Seiling’s office

15590829_10154796347419795_6538589095234741141_oOn Wednesday the office of the region’s chair, Ken Seiling was occupied to demand an end to criminalization of poor people by forcing them to have to choose between freezing to death on the streets or spend the night in police cells as well as in solidarity with our comrades in Dublin whom are currently taking a stand at the Apollo in defense of their right to housing.

Once the occupation got under way we presented our demand to talk to someone whom has the power to create alternatives to jail cells as housing to the poor, We were then met by the region’s housing chair to discuss the humiliation poor people must face to be locked up in police cells with criminals and to be treated like a criminal simply for not wanting to freeze to death in the streets.

To our surprise the Region’s Chair on housing was unaware of the directives that social agencies have been giving to poor people, mainly to go to the police station and sleep in jail cells. She said that this goes against the mission statement of the region in terms of housing and as such shelters in the area could not being doing this. When we showed her the evidence it was quite clear that their is a huge gap between what the region says they stand for and what those in leadership believe is policy and what actually really happens on the ground.

After more discussion we made it clear that housing poor people in jail cells is unacceptable and solutions to this must be found.On Dec. 28th at 10 pm at the Regional Building we will be meeting with the regions chair on housing as well as city staff to create alternatives that deal with the actual housing crisis.

Downtown Business Association Occupied and Shut Down In Opposition of Jail Cells for the Homeless and in Solidarity with our Comrades in Dublin!!!

20 Dec
Some members of the Occupation with their placards and slogans

Some members of the Occupation with their placards and slogans

Today the Downtown Business Association in Kitchener was shut down and occupied to protest the fact that homeless people are forced to either freeze to death on the streets or sleep in jail cells, as well as standing in solidarity with our comrades in Dublin engaged in the Apollo housing occupation.

The reason why the DBA was chosen as a target is because their gentrification is one of the causes of the housing crisis in Kitchener at the moment. This action will be the first of a string of actions targeting those whom are responsible for the dire situation where homeless people are either forced sleep in jail or freeze to death on the streets. We will continue our struggle until habitation fit for human being is available for all,

32CSM Unbroken Resistance Vancouver Simon Fraser University Conference on Genocide,

18 Dec

Myself and our Filipino comrade presenting to the conference on Genocide at Simon Fraser University. Below is the speech I read on behalf of the 32CSM

Myself and our Filipino comrade presenting to the conference on Genocide at Simon Fraser University. Below is the speech I read on behalf of the 32CSM

Comrades and friends I thank you for inviting me to come and present to you on this conference on genocide. Before i really get into things I would like to say that the sentiments of the moderator of this panel, that the term genocide is a term used by the imperialists
to create a false dichotomy between deserving dead and undeserving dead and that if you fall under the category of the latter not only is the violence of the imperialists justified
but to oppose it makes one a monster
So for example when the imperialists mass murder people with carpet bombs in Yugoslavia to stop the so called genocide of the Kosovarians this use of violence is acceptable but when the Irish people use force to stop the colonialist violence of the state that has been murdering torturing and occupying them for the last 800 years they are blood thirsty,psychopaths etc. In other words like so many other words in the imperialist arsenal
like for example the word terrorist the word genocide is currently used as a form of psychological warfare to shut down discussion and rationalize state violence while at the same time condemn those who legitimately are resisting occupation
In terms of the Irish Struggle which is what I am hear to talk to you about today these false dichotomies are the bread and butter of the british occupiers
for example the media will tell us that the Good Friday Agreement has brought peace to Ireland and everyone is now happy and everything is great yet if you mention the fact that there are well over 100 Irish Republicans in jail today for political crimes
one is told that these people are not political prisoners
but rather are dissidents who are the enemies of peace and as such any use of state force against them is rationalized and justified
if one asks why the police patrol the streets in armored cars harassing youth stopping and searching them beating them and doing all sorts of atrocities if their is peace
one is told that this is necessary to stop these so called dissidents from dragging us into the past.
When one points out that Conal Corbet an ex Irish POW who ended up in Maghaberry, one of the worst prisons in Ireland at the tender age of 18 cant leave his house without being stopped and searched in public, or that the Craigavon Two are doing life sentences for a crime they did not commit sentenced by a diplock court on secret evidence
despite the fact that all the evidence points to the fact that they are framed
one is again told that they are dissidents and that this is the price of peace.
so like the word genocide, peace is now a word that the imperialists use to impose their will
because the peace that they are talking about is not a just peace but rather the peace of the grave
because without sovereignty without the right to determine your own destiny words like peace and genocide are meaningless
so let us talk about Ireland not in terms of the imperialists but rather in our own terms so as we can have an understanding of what the real issues are rather then fall into the trap of having to rationalize and explain ourselves to those who for the sake of peace have no problem dropping two nuclear bombs on hiroshima and nagasaki
The history of Ireland since 1916 to present is a history of resistance, struggle, betrayal resistance.
and the spirit that gave birth to the provisional movement after the betrayal of the Originals has come full circle with the creation of the 32CSM after the leadership of the provisional movement not only left the people of Ireland open to attacks from loyalists but themselves have become
the repressive force that they once resisted
The Good Friday Agreement, a framework that the imperialists are promoting everywhere now, ignores the key fundamental issue about the conflict in Ireland which is the fundamental right of the Irish people as a nation to determine their own destiny
article 2 of the GFA is quite clear, the price of peace in the North of Ireland is that the Irish people must give up any territorial claims to the North, accept British rule and in return the British people would not unleash a horrible war and escalation
in other words the Brits would allow the Irish people to speak their language, have their culture and any other crumbs off the table as long as the key issue of the conflict, Irish Sovereignty is sacrificed
and if this is not acceptable to the Irish people then they are the problem and they are the enemies of peace
Partition, Loyalist racist intimidation marches through Irish neighborhoods, Loyalist veto on all decisions in regards to the politics of Ireland and a British Police force are all entrenched in the GFA
and when the provisional movement signed this so called peace agreement they not only turned their back on the struggle but to agreed to be the enforcers of this agreement and as was the case with the freestaters that turned their guns on their former comrades to prove their loyalty to their British masters, the provisional movement was asked to do the same and did so willingly.
Through a campaign of collusion with loyalist forces documented in boston college tapes the leadership of the provisional movement gave names of their comrades who would disagree with these treasonous terms to the British Death Squads for the purpose of execution
places like south armagh were especially targeted in what the UVF called bombing for peace
not only did they participate in this but in many cases they themselves used force violence and intimidation, including murder in the case Jo Jo O Connor
to push this forward.
doing the dirty work of the british
This did not stop their though after joining the police board they turned on their former comrades using the tools and apparatus of the British state to imprison and torture their former comrades
Marian Price, Martin Corey, Christine Conner, The Craigavon Two and Tony Taylor is just a few names of Irish Republicans interned in many cases without trial by their former comrades and in the few cases like the Craigavon two where there was a trail these cases were tried in diplock courts, with secret evidence, most of which was fabricated and easily refuted,with predetermined verdicts
in this political framework those members of SF who wanted to address the issue of sovereignty created a committee within SF to study the issue of sovereignty only to be expelled. This committee, the 32 County Sovereignty Committee, later turned into the 32 County Sovereignty Movement
unified by one issue and one issue only, that of Irish Sovereignty, the 32CSM picked up where the provisionals left off before the betrayal of the GFA
and launched an alternative to the GFA, their submission to the UN which clearly highlighted how the GFA was in violation of International Law
The imperialist forces responded to this by declaring the 32CSM a terrorist organization in the US
criminalizing their attempt to get justice in the international area by criminalizing even their attempts to address the UN
Almost two decades after this agreement was signed interment is alive and well, loyalists in the name of culture march through ardoyne and other irish communities chanting racist slurs and a british police force still interns and intimidates any who will speak out
despite this the 32CSM remains strong and defiant refusing to accept British Rule and occupation and still carries on the 800 year tradition of resistance.
I would like to close by asking people to investigate these issues for themselves, to read about craigavon two and other Irish Prisoners, examine the GFA for yourself, seek truth from facts and once you see what is going on speak out let people know what is going on and not be silent in the face these injustices that result from the occupation
read the 32CSM submission to the UN and support a true peace based on justice and self determination
thank you for your time.

The Real Enemies of Peace is the Anglo American Alliance. Report on World Action for Peace.

18 Dec
From Venezuela To Columbia FREE TONY TAYLOR

From Venezuela To Columbia FREE TONY TAYLOR

Myself presenting roses to Venezuelan Consulate on Behalf of the 32CSM

Myself presenting roses to Venezuelan Consulate on Behalf of the 32CSM

On October 24th an event was hosted at Beit Zetun by the Venezuelan Consulate, the 32 County Sovereignty Movement, Poets For Peace as well as Vote Yes Columbia a Colombian group in support of the peace process and against the US sabotage of the peace process.

The purpose of this event was to discuss the obstacles for peace facing the world today. Speakers from Columbia, Venezuela and other Latin American countries discussed the right wing assault on the Bolivarian project which ranges from out and out coups like in Brazil, to economic sabotage and terrorism in Venezuela, to disrupting the peace process in Colombia, as well as terrorist attacks on Cuba.

This was followed by an intervention from the 32CSM which put forward the thesis that the biggest obstacle to world peace is the Anglo Imperialist Alliance through there violation of national sovereignty around the world. From the Monroe Doctrine to the Platt Amendment one can see that the aggressor, occupier and instigator of violence is not the peoples of Latin America but rather the Anglo Imperialist Alliance that divided the world into spheres of influence through theft murder and brute force and through the use of the gun have colonized Latin America.

This analysis was also used to explain the conflict in the North of Ireland where the british still rule through the use of state violence such as collusion, shoot to kill and internment which is still alive and well today. The cases of Tony Taylor and the Craigavon Two were used as examples of british injustice.

This was followed by the act of thanking the Venezuelan consulate for all the political support that they have given to the 32CSM from denouncing the illegal arrests and deportation of 2 32CSM members and one IRPWA in 2013, Francis Makey, Peter Fitzsimons and Martin Rafferty, to standing with us in denouncing internment and the occupation. A bouquet of roses was given to the Consulate on behalf of the 32CSM.

The event ended with participants joining together behind a banner denouncing the internment of Tony Taylor. In this picture representatives of ALBA Nations, ALBA Movements as well as representatives of many political movements are seen unified behind the demand that Tony be freed at once and that Internment must end.

32CSM statement on the death of Fidel Castro

8 Dec

Julian Ichim reading 32CSM statement at vigil for Fidel Castro attended by hundreds outside of the Cuban Consulate in Toronto

Julian Ichim reading 32CSM statement at vigil for Fidel Castro attended by hundreds outside of the Cuban Consulate in Toronto

The 32 County Sovereignty Movement extends our condolences to the people of Cuba on the passing of their revolutionary leader Fidel Castro. As a beacon of liberation he maintained a constant light for his people despite the massive shadow which capitalism and imperialism cast over his nation. His was a sovereignty that truly recognised its function as a status of freedom and justice for all his people.
Go ndeana Dia Trocaire ar a anam dilis.

32CSM Ar Fhies International Statements

8 Dec

Anti Colonial Working Group

Anti Colonial Working Group sends revolutionary greetings to the 32CSM
its leadership supporters and all whom are gathered here at this Ar
Fhies. We are truly saddened that we could not be their in person to
participate in this glorious occasion and once more see with our own
eyes the reality and brutality of a partitioned and occupied nation,
as well as the heroism and courage of those whom in spite of this
refuse to be intimidated and broken.

We commend the bravery of those at this ar fhies whom are continuing
to engage in political struggle despite all the dirty tricks of the
British state aimed to further demoralize criminalize and fracture the
Republican movement as well as the courage to uphold the principles of
self determination sovereignty and social justice in the current
climate. We stand with you in defense of your right to determine your
own destiny as well as defend the principle set out in the
proclamation, principles that are not for sale, nor are up for

Here in so called canada, occupied native land we of anti colonialist
working group have been working hard to consolidate our political work
as well as expand. Our political consolidation is quite important as
it is quite clear that if we are to create a new society we must first
have a revolutionary organization of cadre,trained political
revolutionaries who live and breathe revolution. As such we are
focusing on creating a school of political and ideological training
aimed at creating cadre, the backbone of any revolutionary movement
with a focus on political and ideological training, social
investigation and urban organizing.

Over the next year we look forward to continuing our friendship and
solidarity as well as intensify our political pressure on the brits as
well as launching campaigns of economic disruption to show the brits
that there are consequences for their action and even here across the
pond their crimes will be opposed.

Victory will belong to us
TAL 32

Human Rights Defenders Group in Palestine
We are in Human Rights Defenders group in Palestine support all your
work in the 32 CSM and we were had the chance to met some of your
comrades when they met with our commander Badee Dwaik who was making
speak tour in Canada . We appreciate all the work and resistance you
do for Palestine such as the BDS movement,the political prisoners in
Israeli jails .and we get close from the global day for political
prisoners on 12 of December and we start working to have the first
conference for this day and we are working to the Palestinian
prisoners day on 17th of April 2017. We believe injustice global
existed every where in the and world and we should be untitled in
global resistance against the injustice in the world . We wish the
sucsseful to your congress meeting and hope that you achieve the goals
you target in this congress. We believe hand by hand we will make the
human victory against the injustice and occupation. I hope to meet you
one day

Badee Dwaik in behalf of Human Rights Defenders Group

Hugo Chavez Peoples Defense Front

Comrades and friends the Hugo Chavez Peoples Defense Front wishes the
32CSM success at you Ar Fhies and we hope that this congress will
assist you in moving forward to establishing a unified 32 county
socialist republic. As you may know over the last year the right wing,
funded and supported by the CIA and their lackeys have been winning
serious victories in Latin America. From the coup against Dilma in
Brazil, to the armed invasion by right wing police forces of the MST
school which has housed militants from our organization and your
affiliate organization, to the right wing victory in Venezuela of the
so called opposition the last year has seen many of our victorys come
under attack
In response to these attacks which are not peaceful protests but
rather terrorist attacks drenched in the literal
blood of students and
workers the Bolivarian Revolution has been fighting back by organizing
neighbourhood to neighbourhood, block to block to defend what we have
won and consolidate this.
As you are currently fighting for your sovereignty and independence so
to are we fighting for our right to determine our own destiny free
from the boot of the yankee imperialist off of our face
and in this moment we ask you and all freedom loving people to stand
with us as we say no to these attacks and fight back to determine our
own destiny and maintain our sovereignty and socialism. We thank you
for the friendship you have shown us over the last year and look
forward to working with you hand in hand as we move forward to show
not only that another world is possible but necessary

Indigenous Peoples Liberation Party

Greetings from occupied indigenous land,

The Indigenous people of the western hemisphere, who for 500 years
have been struggling against colonial occupation and capitalism send
our most sincere and heartfelt greetings to our brothers in occupied
Ireland. Our struggles have always been intertwined, from the great
Choctaw people sending food support while Irish woman were starving,
to the brave Irish soldiers who volunteered to fight for Simon Bolivar
and The Mexican army against Yankee imperialism. Our people have shed
our own blood for each other in every major conflict we have face. So,
in the age of Donald Trump and the rise global Fascism and right wing
extremism, let us renew our blood oath to each other. As long as one
Irishman is enslaved there can be no indigenous liberation.
Congratulations and best wishes on your congress.

Hasta La Victoria Siempre
Hoka hay

32CSM Chairman Address Ar Fhies 2016

8 Dec

Below is the Chairman’s address that was delivered by Francie Mackey on Saturday at the 32 County Sovereignty Movement’s 2016 Ard Fheis –
Comrades agus a chairde, on behalf of the 32 County Sovereignty Movement we send from this Árd Fheis revolutionary and solidarity greetings to all people’s struggling for their national sovereignty and the inherent human rights which that entails.
As we leave the centenary year of the 1916 Easter Rising we now enter a critical time for Irish republicanism. In 2017 the populism surrounding the centenary celebrations will have passed and like Christmas decorations in January the core meaning of that seminal event will be stored away, not for a year for some, but for another century.
With much reticence the Dublin Government marked the event. Their strategy was to bury the politics of 1916 within a decade of other events desperately hoping that the politics of Home Rule and the Good Friday Agreement will prevail. In this they will succeed if republicans fail to impact on national politics in 2017.
I want to congratulate the Irish people for their enthusiasm in celebrating the centenary. In their tens of thousands they attended local and national events and expressed a pride in those who fought in Easter Week and what they fought for. These people were not lured by pomp and circumstance but by a recognition that the Proclamation remains a nation building document, a blueprint for a genuine republic for all the people of Ireland.
For republicans these people are our audience. But having demonstrated their understanding of our history they will not be swayed by green clichés or arguments hiding behind a mask. If republicans wish to make ourselves relevant to our people then our message must not only resonate with them but must also rise above all the other messages that are currently directed at them.
When the Moore Street battle site was spontaneously occupied by citizens to protect our historical heritage a glimpse of genuine republican unity was seen. The maturity displayed demonstrated just how politically effective such unity can be. The occupation attracted a wide cross section of Irish society all eager to show empathy with the protestors aims.
But above all republicans listened to the reasoned arguments of historians, archaeologists and legal professionals and democratically arrived at a strategic conclusion which placed the State on the back foot in their efforts to sell off the site to property speculators.
From this Ard Fheis I would like to express our heartiest congratulations and admiration for all those activists engaged in that campaign. I wish to extend solidarity to the Save Moore Street Campaign who for years have tirelessly raised awareness of the neglect of these historic buildings. In doing so they have also helped to maintain the core ethos of what the rebels strove to achieve.
But like 1916 itself the battle is not over. The Minister for State has appealed the ruling of the High Court that the entire area is of immense historic importance. And as we await the outcome of the Supreme Court deliberations on the matter we remain ready and primed to once again defend our heritage.
On Easter Monday 2016 republicans of all shades marked the centenary in a magnificent display of comradeship and political dignity. Marching behind the simple dynamic of Irishmen and Irish Women the display of unity was applauded by the thousands of Irish people who were in attendance on O’Connell Street.
Recognising the decorous nature of the parade they listened attentively and respectfully as they were addressed from a republican perspective. And this is the salient point we must recognise, that presenting ourselves properly is the first impression that we must make if we are to secure their audience for the republican message we must deliver to them.
I want to thank sincerely the magnificent vision and effort carried out by the National 1916 Commemoration Committee in bringing about this memorable event. I want to thank all those republican groups who took part and made the event the only truly national commemoration of the 1916 Centenary.
This is the template upon which republican unity can be fashioned. It is the first step taken in translating a marching solidarity into a policy driven solidarity. If we can march together we can argue together. And if we can do both we can change the political narrative on the island.
And this is why 2017 can prove to be a watershed for Irish republicanism. The comfort blanket of the centenary will be absent which means it must be the strength of our message that we must first and foremost rely on. And although other important centenaries afford Irish republicans a platform to deliver our message it is the message itself that we must concentrate on.
Republicans must be cognisant of the political environment we find ourselves in for two primary reasons: firstly, the political mindset of our people resides in this environment and it is that mindset, in the here and now, which republicans must converse with. Secondly, all political theatres yield opportunities for the various opinions which operate within them and this is no less true for republicans.
One such opportunity which presented itself was the recent Brexit Referendum and the outcome of that poll. Here the issue of sovereignty was placed on the national, European and international stage. At the core of this conversation was the fundamental analysis that the 32 County Sovereignty Movement placed in International Law before the United Nations.
This is the core analysis which laid down the correct rejection of the process which led to the Good Friday Agreement. It was this analysis that the British Government immediately sought to remove from the so called peace process. It did so by insisting that the entry fee into negotiations was the abandonment of Irish claims to sovereignty over the Six Counties.
Camouflaged in the rhetoric of peace both the Dublin Government and establishment nationalists deflected from this analysis by labelling it as anti-peace. And in the emotive environment of the time our analysis was strategically ignored. But the great flaw in that strategy is that the UN Submission can never go away until the issue of the violation of our national sovereignty is resolved.
And every time that political events like Brexit arise so too does the analysis outlined in our submission. And Brexit is not a singular event which presents us with political opportunities. The political response to it further exposes the deeply flawed constitutional analysis which was presented to the Irish people seeking endorsement of the Good Friday Agreement.
In attempting to challenge the Brexit result, as it applied to the Six Counties, Sinn Fein’s interpretation of the Good Friday Agreement was so exposed as completely misguided by the British High Court that it renders only one of two conclusions: either Sinn Fein were completely duped in the negotiations and were out of their depth or they were willing confederates in duping the Irish people into accepting it.
With either scenario Sinn Fein’s position is completely untenable. If it is the former they must now move to reject Good Friday on the grounds that it represents a deliberate assault on Irish sovereignty by a foreign parliament and is so constructed to pro-long that assault. If their position is the latter then they can be rightly called collaborators in the Vichy and Quisling mould.
And we say this honestly to the Sinn Fein party and its electorate, that you should demand honesty from the Sinn Fein leadership on this fundamental point. How can Good Friday be a highway to Irish unity when your leadership’s interpretation of it has been rubbished in a British court?
Sinn Fein has recently called for dialogue with republicans to take advantage of what they termed were seismic political changes on the island, in reference to Brexit. And we agree with the extent of these changes but we can only take advantage of them if our political position and analysis allows us to do so.
The court ruling brings clarity to the position elucidated by the Sovereignty Movement, namely, that the issue of sovereignty is not, nor ever will be, within the remit of the Stormont Regime. Equally all discussions in relation to a so called hard or soft border deliberately fall short of the constitutional realities as a result.
Good Friday has reinforced a British border between the six and twenty six counties. Brexit now enforces an EU border between the same two entities. We now call upon all republicans to direct their demands for the restoration of Irish sovereignty squarely at the table of the Westminster Parliament. In one vote within that institution the Anglo Irish conflict can be ended. We now call for that vote as a prelude to a genuine peace process for the people of Ireland.
But the task for all republicans in 2017 is to make this analysis relevant in order for it to gain political traction. In political struggles being right is unfortunately not enough. How can we translate the language of sovereignty into the every day discourse of our people?
I want to introduce an answer to that question so that ourselves as a political pressure group and the wider republican base can engage in a progressive political debate to put in place a bedrock of republican and socialist activism and build a unified strategy to secure republican aims. The concept is known as Applied Republicanism and is predicated on four functioning principles:
Recognising that each generation of Irish republicans have strategic autonomy and onerous duty to pursue our perennial right to national self-determination. It is the right which is necessarily carried forward and not any given strategy or stance taken in its pursuit.
Republican policies must be synonymous with their pursuit. All policies must be developed in tandem with a viable strategy to implement them.
All matters for policy must be defined in terms of how they function and all policies must be applied strategically to impact on that composite process.
Success must be consolidated and translated into policy. Failure must be recognised and democratically discarded.
Applied Republicanism is designed to bring republican policies and strategies into the heart of the functioning relationship between the citizen, the family, the community and the nation. It defines National Sovereignty in terms of a functioning and just society by recognising the mutual dependency that these relationships have for each other. It has historical provenance.
James Fintan Lalor once described the struggle between tenant and landlord as a microcosm of the struggle between Ireland and the British Empire. Herein lies the seeds of Applied Republicanism. In defining the national struggle in such terms Lalor was defining a national dimension to local struggles. In Lalor’s era the Land Question was one of the burning issues of the day and by integrating this question into the question of national sovereignty the struggle to secure our sovereignty was immediately broadened and made relevant to the daily struggles of our people.
In the modern era these daily struggles are no less relevant to the continuing national struggle today. But to truly understand the nature of these problems, to realistically engage with them, republicans must put in place a pragmatic policy programme to address them. Waving the Proclamation at political and social issues is not an all curing panacea. Quoting Pearse and Connolly bears little relevance to the scourge of addiction or the deprivations of debt.
We view each citizen as sovereign and as the ultimate source of national sovereignty. But in between the sovereign citizen and the sovereign nation is a functioning co-dependence and it is within this relationship that Applied Republicanism must strategically operate. It is here we make a reality of Lalor’s perceptive vision by recognising the concept of community as the binding agent between the citizen and the state.
What’s deprived of the citizen is deprived of the nation and what’s deprived of the nation is deprived of the citizen. A family cannot function without a home. Communities cannot function without families. A nation cannot function without communities. Partition is as depriving of our people as homelessness and debt. Applied Republicanism seeks to address the totality of our sovereignty’s violation by seeking to build strategies at every social level to end it.
Bobby Sands said that we all have our part to play. The problem arises when we fail to play our parts in harmony with each other. The 32 County Sovereignty Movement has been to the fore on the issue of republican unity since our inception. We recognise that identity is important to republican groups. But the preservation of identity need not be a bar to mutual cooperation.
Identity is more progressively expressed via radical policies and strategies rather than initials and labels. Giving leadership should not be confused with seeking control. Democratic debate is essential to political advancement. Republicanism is not a static concept; there is no holding position only a position to be advanced.
From this Ard Fheis the 32 County Sovereignty Movement calls on all republican groups to not only engage in inclusive dialogue but to actively seek this dialogue themselves. We must create a policy interface between ourselves and our people if republican objectives are to have any hope of being realised.
We send solidarity greetings to all Republican POW’s and their families. The need for their welfare makes no distinctions as to the status of POW’s and neither do we. Republican prisoners have always been central to the republican struggle and have at times given leadership to that struggle.
We have been consistent in our approach to prisoner’s welfare. We believe such welfare should not be politicised nor applied in a discriminatory fashion. The cost of schoolbooks and electric bills do not vary depending on what landing a POW happens to be housed.
We urge all republicans to redouble their efforts both in relation to supporting the dependants of POW’s and also advancing the goals for which they have faced imprisonment.
Before I finish I wish to reiterate just how important the year 2017 will be for all republicans. If we cannot build on the unity and comradeship displayed for the 1916 Centenary then in truth we will have marked that event in vain.
1916 is unfinished business; let us make it our business to finish it.
Beir Bua