July 2011

Book Launch & Talk, Conor McCabe "Sins of the Father", 8pm, Tuesday 19 July @ solidaritybooks


On Tuesday July 19th Solidarity Books will host the Cork launch of Conor McCabe's important and topical new book 'Sins of the Fathers' The author will give a talk on the central themes of the book and an open discussion will follow. Start time is 8 o'clock. Hope to see you there.

Conor McCabe is a journalist and writer with the online publications Dublin Opinion and Irish Left Review. His specialities are economics and Irish politics. 


Film Night: Closely Watched Trains, Czechoslovakia (1966) 92 mins, directed by Jiří Menzel, Sun July 17th 8pm @SolidarityBooks


Life is not easy in Nazi-occupied Czechoslovakia for young Miloš, between seductresses and...

Closely Watched Trains,
Czechoslovakia (1966) 92 mins
directed by Jiří Menzel

"one of the pinnacles of the Czech New Wave of the 60s" The Guardian

"earthy humor...wonderfully sly...charming and poignant comprehension of the psychology of sex" N.Y. Times

Sunday July 17th 8 pm at Solidarity Books 43 Douglas Street http://solidaritybooks.org admission free, donations appreciated

Report from the frontlines of the Ardoyne anti-Orange Order riot


Rioting erupted in ‘nationalist areas’ across the North on Tuesday after the annual Orange Order parades. The worst of the trouble was in Ardoyne in North Belfast which left 16 police officers injured and with over 60 lethal plastic bullets fired leaving many people injured.  WSM member 'John Creagh' reports from the Ardoyne on the disturbances and what they tell us.

Special needs anti-education cuts protest marks end of new Govt. honeymoon


Hundreds of parents, children, teachers, political representatives and people from communities all over the country gathered outside the Dáil on Wednesday to express their anger and dismay at the government’s plan to cut Special Needs Assistants and Resource teachers.    It was possibly the finest day of this patchy summer, and as one father of a young man with Down syndrome put it, we should be at the beach instead of protesting outside the house of elected representatives. He went on to say that his young boy would not be the great young man he is at 17 without the help and dedication of the Special Needs Assistants who’ve worked with him since he started his education.

Northern Ireland's sectarian violence


Following on from this weeks July 12th rioting across the North and report from a WSM member present during the disturbances in Ardoyne, Guardian presenters Hugh Muir and Peter Sale have produced an excellent podcast reviewing the roots of the latest trouble. The podcast interviews convicted members of 'dissident republican' organisations and examines the socio/economic and political context of the latest sectarian violence. The podcast concludes that the violence remains within the fringes of the working-class, but is dangerous nevertheless.

Release Brendan Lillis Now!


Brendan Lillis is a prisoner in Maghaberry jail in the North. He is close to death, weighing only 5.5 stone and having an estimated 10 days to live. His partner has pleaded for support as she watches Brendan slowly die. There is a media blackout and he can no longer speak nor move, and is confined to his bed, in a prison cell with no windows.

Social class a key factor behind suicide rate in north


One of North Belfast’s top psychiatric doctors Dr Maria O’Kane said at least 70% of patients her staff are treating in the Mater Hospital in Belfast for suicide and self harm issues have a history of alcohol misuse.

Burton threatens unemployed


Labour minister Joan Burtons proposed dole are cuts designed to force people into low wage jobs.  Wages are under attack in the lowest paid sections of the economy with the active support of the government, as a result people are far less inclined to take up employment in these areas.  To resolve this the government wish to compel people to take up these jobs by threatening their social welfare payments.  This is the strategy that was developed and enforced by Maggie Thatchers rightwing government in Britain in the eighties.

Northern Ireland workers love to skive


Workers in the North like to skive off work more than anywhere else in Britain according to a survey from business advisors PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). A whopping 65% of employees admitted to skiving off work for at least a day in the past year, with a third taking between two and five days. This compares with 51% in Scotland and 62% in Wales.  Illness remains the most common excuse to pull a sickie while others display fake symptoms around the office with the hope of getting a day off such as sniffing at work, pretending to lose their voice. We also gladly top the table for inclining to skive if we see our workmates doing the same.

Brendan Lillis partner to begin solidarity hunger strike


Roisin Allsop, partner of political prisoner is to begin a 3 day hunger strike along with supporters tomorrow in West Belfast to highlight his case and demand his release based on humanitarian grounds. A meeting was also held this week in Derry attended by over 200 people to highlight ongoing state repression and brutality on the inside. Protests are also taking place across Ireland and in London. His plight has finally broken into the mainstream media in recent days despite in the past being largely abandoned by the political establishment.

Support Demands Of Maghaberry Prisoners for their rights and dignity to be respected


Around 30 Republican prisoners continue to engage in a ‘dirty protest’ in Maghaberry prison over the failure of the Northern Ireland Administration and the Prison Officers Association to implement a facilitated agreement reached between all parties last August. This is part of a wider criminalisation policy to punish, brutalize and isolate prisoners which includes regular beatings and strip-searching - which remains the outstanding issue to be resolved. Similarly to the 1980/81 prison struggles, the prisoners are simply asking for their rights and dignity to be respected.

Obituary for Manchester anarchist Bob Miller


It was with great sadness that the WSM learned of the news of the passing of Bob Miller on June 17. Bob was a member of the Anarchist Federation and a comrade from Manchester, England. Many of us got to know Bob since after he visited Mayo in 2006 spending a week in Rossport supporting the Shell to Sea campaign. Since then Bob and his partner Sally have attended several Anarchist Bookfairs in Dublin and many members of the WSM had the priveldge to get to know Bob as a friend. 

Shell resume work at Aughoose - national day of action called


Rossport Solidarity Camp (RSC) reported Friday morning that Shell was finally resumed work at the compound in Aughoose. In response a national day of a action has been called for 29th July. The compound in Aughoose is where Shell intend to start digging the tunnel to house a section of the experimental high pressure raw gas pipeline that has been opposed for a decade by the local community.

Solidarity hungerstrike to demand release of Brendan Lillis continues


The partner of Brendan Lillis along with ex-blanket men and supporters still continue on solidarity hungerstrike to demand the release of Brendan on humanitarian grounds.  Last Friday, David Ford Minister of Justice released a statement refusing to release Brendan Lillis and claimed who was receiving adequate medical attention in Maghaberry prison hospital. Once again exposing the brutal and callous prison regime which remains unchanged since the 1980/81 hunger strikes.

Enda Kenny and Joan Burton declare WAR on the Poor


Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Minister Joan Burton have begun the process of preparing the way for further attacks on the poorest sections of Irish society. As part of the governments strategy for dealing with the economic crisis there will be further cuts in welfare dressed up as reforms.

After Cloyne: Talk is cheap the church must be removed from all schools.


Enda Kenny’s speech in the Dail about the Cloyne report seems to signal that the south- ern Irish ruling class is preparing to break with the Catholic Church. While Kenny’s statement has been the strongest to date it is a pitiful reflection of the state that it has taken it this long to categorically condemn the Roman Catholic Church that, after Cloyne, is tainted beyond what even their most ardent supporters thought possible.

Mass Opposition to Proposed Household Charge - Boycott Campaign under way - But Sinn Fein Refuse to Support Non-Payment


The announcement from the government that households are to face a charge of €100 per annum from January 1st with separate water and property taxes to follow by 2014 has met with fierce opposition across the country.  Radio and television shows have been inundated with texts and phonecalls from irate people who see this latest tax as a step too far and who have been pledging to resist the charge.  In a TV3 IrelandAM poll this morning, Wednesday, 87% of people answered ‘Yes’ to the question “Would you consider boycotting the household charge?”

Audio interview from Shell to Sea campaigner during todays direct action

Interview with Ray, a WSM member who took part in the day of action against Shell's compound in Erris this morning.  He reports on what happened this morning and also the successful actions carried out all week which have "really stopped the progress Shell hoped to make".
He gives a description of Garda and private security numbers as well as describing the injuries received by one campaigner inside the compound.

Day of action in Erris - Shell's fences pulled down, security & police turn violent


Around 100 Shell to Sea campaigners took part in a national day of action today in Erris with a WSM member at the scene reporting that all work has been stopped and several fences had been pulled down.  At least four campaigners were been injured by Garda and private security, at least two of these have gone to hospital.  One of these appears to have serious head injuries.

GSOC & the ‘Garda rape threat tape’ - who watches the watchmen


During the week the Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission released an interim report on the Garda rape threat tape recordings that were revealed last April. The report contains a major error that suggests GSOC are the source of repeated attempts to spin the story in the media as somehow being the fault of the women the Garda were recorded discussing threatening to rape. The timing of the release of the report was also suspect, coming in the week Shell resumed construction and the day before a national day of action in Erris durig which four Shell to Sea campaigners were injured by Garda and/or private security violence. Such was the level of spin applied that some media made the mistake of leading with the news that the Garda had been cleared of something no one had ever accused them of, directly threatening the two women with rape.

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