Rebel columns…

Danny Morrison‘s latest book Rebel Columns is a compendium of his journalism, written for a range of newspapers, including the Guardian, the Irish Examiner, and the Andersonstown News.

It’s reminiscent of other press gleanings like those of David McKittrick and Eammon Maillie, except that Morrison makes no pretense that his work is objective. He is unabashed in his role of political columnist. It provides a useful insight into the last six or seven years, as seen from a mainstream Republican point of view.

His account of the signing of the Belfast Agreement – witnessed from the outside in company of the world’s press corps – betrays a passion of the business of journalism and a decent eye for drama. His view of his opponents at the time – “Unionism in change is dynamic: Unionism is interesting”.

I flicked imaptiently to the section marked Unionism Misunderstood – Some Clarifications. From the reading there, it’s clear that however close senior Republicans and Unionists felt to on that morning of April 11th, it didn’t last! Ian Paisley, Garvaghey Road and Holy Cross primary school all enter the story and the pitch is queered.

The section on the 11th September disaster and its aftermath, teases out an sometimes nuanced criticism of US foreign policy. His obituaries run from the first Blanket protester to Spike Milligan. Overall Morrison is most engaging when he is freest in his storytellling. My own favourite is 145 Divis Street.

Another book from the same publishing house well worth having is M

  • Davros

    Mick, what does “tricks out” mean ?

    and would it not be better to describe DM as a Mainstream Northern Republican ?

  • peteb


    I seriously doubt whether the attempted comparison with David McKittrick and Eammon Maillie would stand much scrutiny.

    A more realistic description of Morrison’s ‘journalism’, rather than the disingenuously non-party-aligned “mainstream Republican point of view”, would be “a Sinn Féin point of view”.

    and don’t get me started on Máirtín Ó Muilleoir ;o)

  • peteb

    Hmmm.. seems the new site isn’t ready for a fada yet :o)

  • dave

    Danny who?

  • maca

    “Danny who?”
    Morrison, Jim’s brother.

  • Keith M

    Morrison did himself no favours on last night’s Brighton bombing docuemntary. He can over as only (slighly) less crazer than Magee.

  • J Kelly

    Danny Morrison is one of the very few political commentators on this island who can articulate the republican view from the inside and from his own experiences. For years we have been used to commentators like Eamonn mc Cann, Nell mc Cafferty, Brian Feeney and others telling us what they think republicans are feeling and thinking Danny Morrison can tell it as it is because his feelings and thoughts would be similar to many republicans.

  • peteb

    The point remains, J Kelly, Morrison has always been less of a ‘political commentator’ and more of a SF spokesman.