Terrorist remembrance and the GAA

The official supplier of GAA shirts, O’Neills, has launched a commemorative jersey to mark the 25th anniversary of 10 IRA and INLA members choosing to die on hunger strike (UPDATE: The shirt is available from the O’Neills shop in Andersonstown). The launch was attended by the two prominent GAA players, the Antrim senior manager and Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams. Gerry Adams argued the shirt was appropriate as:

“A number of the men who died in the Hunger Strike were GAA members and keen players. One such was Joe McDonnell…”A GAA spokesperson said it was not an official shirt but a “GAA-style jersey” and insisted that “”as an association, we remain apolitical.” He said the GAA had no official plans to mark the Hunger Strike. However, a number of clubs are named after Hunger Strikers and at least two GAA clubs, Patrick Sarsfield and Kevin Lynch, have held commemorative events. Sinn Fein has promoted commemorative events so the GAA clubs participation could be a breach of Rule 7:

“Party political questions shall not be discussed at its meetings and no committee, club, council or representative thereof shall take part, as such, in any party political movement,”

Photographs here.