IRA man and British minister: generations apart

So Clare Short is not the only woman member of the British cabinet with a family with strong Republican background.According to the Times, Ruth Kelly’s grandfather was an IRA quartermaster and hunger striker, no less!

An Internment Order signed by Richard Dawson Bates, the hardline Northern Ireland Home Affairs Minister, states that Mr Murphy was arrested “on the recommendation of the Inspector-General RUC.” The document continues: “It is expedient that Phil (sic) Murphy of Castlecoole, Enniskillen, in the County Fermanagh, who is suspected of being about to act in a manner prejudicial to the preservation of the peace and the maintenance of order in Northern Ireland, should be interned.”

And spent time on a leaky old barge at the mouth of the Belfast Lough:

He was taken to Londonderry and from there to the workhouse in Larne, Co Antrim, before being transferred to the notorious prison ship SS Argenta, a leaky barge moored at the mouth of Belfast Lough where untried prisoners were kept in horrendous conditions below decks in cages. He was released unconditionally in June 1924 after a fellow prisoner, Cahir Healy, was elected to the House of Commons as MP for Fermanagh and Tyrone. His election was such an embarrassment to Stanley Baldwin, the Prime Minister, that pressure was brought to bear on the Stormont Government to end internment.

  • Nicholas Pugachev

    “Mr Murphy, a railway porter, was one of 700 suspects arrested in May 1922 during an IRA bombing and shooting campaign orchestrated by Michael Collins along the newly defined border separating Northern Ireland from the Irish Free State.”

    is this accurate ?

  • Belfastwhite

    That explains why she is getting so much bad press lately >;0P

  • Kim Philby

    Are we not covering the latest spy-ring?

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/4638136.stm

  • Betty Boo

    Kim,

    They are everywhere!!!

    Mick Fealty,

    Thanks for all your effort to get the latest comments zone working again. It makes all the difference.

  • BogExile

    The genetic link between our benighted, mumbling, bumbling Blair babe and Mr Murphy the quartermaster then explains the failure of physical force Republicanism 🙂

    NB: Thing not to say to Opus Dei member about catastrophic education policy disaster – ‘Don’t beat yourself up over it.’

  • darth rumsfeld

    nor indeed, that in order to get the legislation through the Commons, she is planning to impose a three line whip :0)

    I’ll get me celice….

  • harry flashman

    What a tolerant nation. Can you for one second imagine a grandchild of a UVF man being given the education portfolio in the Irish Republic?

    On a secondary point what is it with the Blair government and education ministers and Chucks?

  • oceallaigh

    No doubt her grandfather`s courage in resisting a brutal occupation will give Ruth Kelly a renewed sense of pride and conviction .

  • Fergal

    Harry Flashman –
    Would this tolerance extend to Ruth Kelly wearing her grandfathers medals at the next opening of Parliament??

  • seabhac siulach

    So, what with all this talk of MI5 agents/touts in Sinn Fein, it looks like an IRA sleeper managed to make it into the British cabinet…and is busy sabotaging the English education system from the inside…
    Go on ye girl, ye!

  • harry flashman

    I’m sure there’d be no problem Fergal. After all more scoundrels than enough have been entertained at the Royal Palaces (including Westminster) in the past, remember Wilson getting his socialist buddy Caucescu a gong in the 1970s?

    But I wonder would an orange sash or old UVF regalia be so welcome in Dail Eirinn?

  • Fergal

    I would hope so Harry. I can’t imagine too many of our TD’s getting worked up about it.There are not many votes in sectarianism in the south. None of the main political parties have any great problem with the impending Love Ulster rally either, just the usual far leftists and anti-GFA ultra-nationalists.

    BTW the orange tradition is always represented when the Dail is in session, the green, white, and orange tricolour flies over the building and is also present in the Dail chamber.

  • spartacus

    as if it’s some great honour for her to work for blair. i see it differently.

    what a horrible burden it must be for the kelly family to carry around the knowledge that their daughter has turned her back on tradition and now works for a bumbling war criminal who can’t tell the truth to save his life.

  • darth rumsfeld

    “BTW the orange tradition is always represented when the Dail is in session, the green, white, and orange tricolour flies over the building and is also present in the Dail chamber”….

    …there just aren’t any of the bxxxxxds actually in the chamber. What a typical piece of nationalist hypocrisy!

  • Fergal

    Wheres the hypocracy darth?
    The Dail is a democratically elected assembly and no one contests the elections to it on a unionist ticket so its no wonder none of its members are unionists!.
    I do accept of course that even back in 1918 only 2 southern constituencies were won by unionists, and none since.

    However, in recent decades each Taoiseach has asked Unionists to take up his nominations to the Seanad so that the unionist voice might be heard in the Oireachtas, and those who have taken up the challange have been roundly attacked by other unionists for so doing.

    So wheres the hypocracy darth?

    And furthermore i have never referred to my unionist neighbours and friends as you have suggested. Take it back.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    If true, it is a legacy of which Ruth Kelly should be extremely proud.

  • missfitz

    Can you just imagine what the grandfather would have made of it? He must be spinning in his grave

  • Shore Road Resident

    Well at least this sort-of explains the bizarre Jude Collins column in last week’s Dreary Ireland: “Ruth Kelly – the Brit meeja is only after her because she’s Catholic, like”.
    (He offered no evidence for this assertion at all, by the way.)

  • missfitz

    http://www.nuzhound.com/articles/arts2001/mar30-01_Kleinrichert_book_on_Argenta__MOMuilleoir.php

    For anyone interested, an article about the Argenta. Fascinating stuff, I had never heard of it

  • a granddaughter or an IRA man in an IRA appeasing political party

    Should have known as much!

  • Nicholas Pugachev

    Re. Argenta book.

    the BUIS Department of Central Library has copies.

  • Nicholas Pugachev

    Thats Belfast Central Library

  • Ard Mhaca Jim

    she should be pround of her family background. the media seems to have issues with Kelly from the day she was “outed” as a member of Opus Dei. I don’t see what the fuss is about as i sincerely doubt having Ruth Kelly in the British cabinet will lead to a united Ireland, although i’d like to be proved wrong.

  • Nicholas Pugachev

    Ard Mhaca Jim :

    so you don’t think her membership of the shaddowy cult of personality, that is Opus Dei
    worrying ?

    BTW: the Dublin, chapter are based in the palmerston (thats how they spell it on the Irish OS map)park area of D6.

    their cover name is “The Emerald Institute”

  • “BTW the orange tradition is always represented when the Dail is in session, the green, white, and orange tricolour flies over the building and is also present in the Dail chamber”….
    …there just aren’t any of the bxxxxxds actually in the chamber. What a typical piece of nationalist hypocrisy!
    Posted by darth rumsfeld on Jan 23, 2006 @ 04:43 PM *

    Point 1. if you think there should be an orange voice in the Dail then nominate one for election and see where it gets him. Any suggestions ?
    Point 2. if you don’t think there are orange voices in the Dail then some might say that you haven’t scratched the surface.

  • missfitz

    This is off subject, but I thought membership of Opus Dei was restricted to men? And I always thought that was an absolute rule for them, something like priesthood? Interested to hear any views on that

  • darth rumsfeld

    “a granddaughter or an IRA man in an IRA appeasing political party”

    Why bring Sylvia Hermon into this FYU :0)?

  • darth rumsfeld

    “Point 1. if you think there should be an orange voice in the Dail then nominate one for election and see where it gets him. Any suggestions ?”

    I don’t care one way or the other whether there is an Orangeman in the Dail, but I do care when someone pretends that a strip of cloth proves his country’e ethos is inclusive when it demonstrably ain’t. But if you need a nominee what about Brother Trimble for the Seanead, seeing as he’s not yet got his peerage for services to the NIO for reasons beyond our Ken.

    “Point 2. if you don’t think there are orange voices in the Dail then some might say that you haven’t scratched the surface.”

    Some might also say that MI5 have put a large rock in Stephen’s green packed full of bugging equipment to spy on Iveagh House. I suspect they’d be loonies too ( though rather less assuredly than I would have a week ago!) .

  • piebald

    Darth – your apparent ignorance on a whole host of 26 county matters is constantly revealed on this forum

    http://www.politics.ie/wiki/index.php?title=Seymour_Crawford

    I believe this man (Seymour Crawford) is one example of a TD who currently represents the Protestant tradition in the Dáil and who is respected by all for his hard work.

  • Brian Keenan’s father was in the RAF, did it make him any less of a provo?

    P.S – Now that the latest intelligence service ploy has been uncovered, there are people all over Belfast picking up rocks in the street..

  • art_macerc

    “the green, white, and orange tricolour’

    Genuine question.

    I know what the Irish constitution now says about the flag but I was brought up to believe that the colours were green, white and gold – green for the land of Ireland and white and gold for the Papacy.

    Elvis Costello seems to be under the same impression (see the chorus to his “Anthem”).

    When/how did our view change?

  • George

    yawn, yawn and triple yawn.

    Firstly who cares if her grandfather was in the Irish Defence Forces.

    Secondly, I don’t see any unionists whinging about Michael McDowell’s Irish freedom winning heritage, of which he is proud.

    Hell he’s the flavour of the month for unionists.

  • darth rumsfeld

    piebald- not only do I know of Seymour Crawford, I know him. He is a member of Fine Gael, a republican party formed out of the IRA in the 1920s.I know Trevor Sergeant of the greens is a protestant, as was Fine Gaeler Ivan Yeates in the last dail. Neither one of them would claim to have an Orange or Unionist outlook, so your point is baseless.

    FG is no more Orange than I am a Republican. Do stop imagining that a few tame Prods on the judiciary, in the former Vice regal Lodge, or in the Parliament means that there is a scintilla of recognition of the British-Irish, Ulster-Scots or orange tradition.

    Of course you don’t have any problem with Prods in the Dail -or anywhere else- in the post theocratic Republic. But try incorporating Peter Robinson in full vitriolic peroration in Leinster House,and not only tolerating his politics, but actually embracing them, rejoicing in them as a part of the Irish diaspora, even apologising for the wrongs done in your name to his people, deconstructing the official ethos of the state and building a new one that accepts Orange parades as the most noxious expression of our culture ( in your eyes). See-you’re not even close to epiphany.

  • George

    Darth,
    southern Orangemen in the border counties (the ones you left behind) were asked by their Order to vote Fine Gael so take it up with your brethren for suggesting it.

    Secondly, Orange parades of a Christian nature are most welcome, a la Rossknowlagh.

    There is no Union flag and no oath to the Queen in the bible.

  • Tochais Síoraí

    Art, always orange from when it was first devised in the mid 19th Century and from when it was first used as a national flag. The gold / papacy thing is a misconception. Some people (both catholic nationalists and unionists) were uncomfortable with orange on the flag so the misconception took hold for a lot of people.

    Darth, if we take Peter in Leinster House do we have to take Iris too?

  • piebald

    Darth – if Peter Robinson wants to stand for a Dail seat or speak in the House of Representives/Senate/Committee if Northern Representatives are granted that right then I would unreservedly respect his right to speak as long as he wasn’t waving a gun licence or wearing a beret. That would truly be an epiphanic moment for him

  • darth rumsfeld

    “southern Orangemen in the border counties (the ones you left behind) were asked by their Order to vote Fine Gael so take it up with your brethren for suggesting it.”

    No they weren’t George. They voted for the PA (Protestant association), or the farmer’s party in Monagahan, and the Donegal Progressive Party. Some Protestants in Donegal even voted tactically for Niall Blaney in the 1990s. FG always selected a Protestant candidate in the Dail elections post 1945 to cynically hoover up votes-don’t make them Orangemen though.

    “Secondly, Orange parades of a Christian nature are most welcome, a la Rossknowlagh.”
    So that’s all of them then- Drumcree is a Church parade, while Rossknowlagh is commemorating a political event -the battle of the Boyne.

    Tut tut, need to think more before posting old son.

    “Darth, if we take Peter in Leinster House do we have to take Iris too? ”
    Too right, and all the little Robinsons. Still, they’ll be safe from criticism of a dynasty when we see the “qualifications” of most TDs in the Lenihasn, Haughey, Spring, Ahern, Bruton,banotti/Collins, Andrews, O’Malley families etc etc

    “Darth – if Peter Robinson wants to stand for a Dail seat or speak in the House of Representives/Senate/Committee if Northern Representatives are granted that right then I would unreservedly respect his right to speak as long as he wasn’t waving a gun licence”

    Cop out. When he starts to demand the removal of Irish symbols for the sake of parity of esteem, like we’re so used to up here, will you back him to the hilt? Thought not.

  • piebald

    Darth – why would Peter demand the removal or Irish symbols when according to his party leader “I would never repudiate the fact that I am an Irishman”

  • piebald

    of

  • George

    Darth,
    the OO parade in Rossnowlagh is not a political march. It may commemorate an event but it is not used as a tool for current political advantage.

    It is not a political event, it is a Christian one. No getting bombed out of your head on cheap cans of Tenants or Scrumpy Jack.

    Anyway, the OO don’t have any problem marching at Drumcree, it’s the Garvaghy Road that’s the problem.

    I would assume that if the Orangemen of Drumcree desisted from an oath to the Queen and flying the Union flag out of respect to the citizens of the street they were hoping to march on they could march down there too.

    But to do that would be to give the other side a political advantage.

    Also,
    I said the OO asked them to vote for FG in border counties not that all Protestants did. Are you saying that the Orange Order in the border counties never asked its members to vote FG?

  • Mickhall

    as if it’s some great honour for her to work for blair. i see it differently.

    what a horrible burden it must be for the kelly family to carry around the knowledge that their daughter has turned her back on tradition and now works for a bumbling war criminal who can’t tell the truth to save his life.

    Posted by spartacus on Jan 23, 2006 @ 04:22 PM

    Indeed spartacus, but at home they are little better for Blair’s government have only today announced they intend making the sick and disabled who claim benefit poorer economically. These cuts will hit particularly hard in the north as people from working class and middle class, protestant and catholic communities claim incapacity benefit in high numbers.

    All this talk of [get the violins out] helping the sick to return to work is a sham, especially with the current unemployment figures. The whole purpose of these changes is to reduce those claiming IB from receiving an average of £75 per week down to approx. £54. I bet Ms Kelly’s grandfather would be very proud to have a grand-daughter who works to actively make a section of the economically poor, even poorer.

    Christ the Blairites really are the lowest of the low, yet Mr Adams still will not have a bad word said about the man. People within En/Scot/Wales voted for the man to improve their lot, not for him to drive them further into poverty.

  • Posted by darth rumsfeld on Jan 24, 2006 @ 11:32 AM

    * Neither one of them would claim to have an Orange or Unionist outlook, so your point is baseless…* what’s your rationale to this. Orange tradition implies of the Protestant faith and of the British ruling class in Ireland prior to independence. Oh, do you just means the drunks trying to get up the Garvaghy road to cause trouble is the Orange tradition?
    * Do stop imagining that a few tame Prods…means that there is a scintilla of recognition of the British-Irish, Ulster-Scots or orange tradition. * but there is recognition in Dail Eireann as evidenced by the Protestant TDs and their inclusive and non partisan workings. Do you means that just because they aren’t Catholic in a country with a large Catholic population that all their work has to be in relation to maintaining a Protestant ethos – not very representative for their electorate, now is it? You might want to touch up on what a politician should work at in representing his constitutants and the electorate in a democracy. As an aside there are a number of non Christian member of Dail Eireann; not bad for a democracy less than a century old and after all the imperialism from the ol’ colonials rulers.
    * But try incorporating Peter Robinson in full vitriolic peroration…* isn’t he the not-very-democratic gang leader who assaulted the Garda station at Clontibret? Was he wearing his Third Force red beret on the night? I wouldn’t want him anywhere near houses of representation. Actually, his party doesn’t even get approval of half the population of the contrived entity where he goes for election.
    * that accepts Orange parades as the most noxious expression of our culture * parades are accepted in Rep Ireland (see Rossnowleagh) but I think you have in mind the cider and e-fests around the bonfire on the 11th type that no society other than the Sick Counties (well about half of it) could accept. BTW you can keep those aspects of orangism that are so loved by you and yours. No wonder the population of London, L’pool, Manchester and Bir’ham have never welcomed your traditions too warmly. You aren’t the credit to Brown’s britishness that he had in mind !??!

  • oceallaigh

    Ard Mhaca Jim :

    so you don’t think her membership of the shaddowy cult of personality, that is Opus Dei
    worrying ?
    They must keep you up at night worrying ,Opus under the bed ,scare…ymaybe we should make them decomission their prayer books !

  • darth rumsfeld

    “It is not a political event, it is a Christian one. No getting bombed out of your head on cheap cans of Tenants or Scrumpy Jack.”

    Well I suspect you’ve never been there and won’t have seen the queues for the bar at the Hotel, albeit mostly spectators- just as at any other Twelfth funnily enough. But your concession that the Institution has a religious dimension is now pocketed.

    Just one question-when those self same Orangemen from Donegal Cavan Monaghan Leitrim Dublin and Wicklow don their collarettes a few days after Rossknowlagh to walk in parades in Counties Fermanagh, Armagh, and Londonderry-what’s changed about them?

    And what “current political advantage” are they being used for exactly?

    “I would assume that if the Orangemen of Drumcree desisted from an oath to the Queen and flying the Union flag out of respect to the citizens of the street they were hoping to march on they could march down there too. ”

    Well noone else would. There are Union Flags on display at Rossknowlagh you know, and Stonepark Accordion Band from County Cavan plays “The Queen” when the parade ends.
    We have the same obligation north and south as well, which includes supporting the terms of the Glorious Revolution settlement. So…gasp..all RoI Orangemen are potential revolutionaries!!! Yet people in the 26 are tolerant of them which must mean that people in the wee 6 are….(work it out yourself George )

    “Are you saying that the Orange Order in the border counties never asked its members to vote FG?”- yes I am- though I’m sure with multiple votes there was always a preference down the ticket to keep the Shinner or FF out-that’s common sense.

    Best stick to posting on the economics
    -at least you have some knowledge of that topic.

  • Cynic

    Ruth Kelly has presumably taken the oath of allegiance. If so should it matter what her grandfather did?