Casement Hunger Strike Rally is a breach of rules – GAA Central Council

The BBC is reporting that the GAA Central Council discussed the proposed Hunger Strike Rally at Casement Park and consider the event “would break the organisation’s rules about staging political events”. Spokesperson for the National H-Block Hunger Strike Committee, Peadar Whelan, denies it is a party political event. The confirmed speakers are Sinn Fein’s Gerry Adams, Mary Lou McDonald and Toireasa Ferris. He argues that the ground “belonged to the people” as well as the GAA. Will the GAA Central Council take disciplinary action? What about other Hunger Strike events at GAA clubs? As the GAA Central Council has deemed it a party political event, will the funding bodies take the same view and ask for the return of the grants for breach of conditions?

  • darth rumsfeld

    “Meanwhile back here on Slugger there are only a few more months for unionism to decide whether it wants to grow up or not. It’s up to them, co-operate with republicans or exclude themselves for good.”

    You’re Brian “Grumpy” Feeney aren’t you libbie?
    Cos outside his crazy-cassandra columns noone is stupid enough to think that it’s now more important to keep the Shinners in than the prods out. Oh I know that wasn’t always the case, but having decommissioned and tied themselves up in rhetorical flimflam, there is no way back for Gerry and the lads to the good old days of Bloody Friday. There’s a few sweeteners left to get them into peeler’s uniforms, and a few rattles to be thrown out of the pram, but they’re now a busted flush. Their influence is political only- and with a few seats at Westminster that they won’t even take in a looming hung parliament, what influence is that.Unionists have threatened all sorts of dire consequences in the past if joint authority is imposed, and have certainly demonstrated their community’s capacity to spill over- as several Drumcrees demonstrated to the government.

    I cetainly don’t advocate violence, but I see how the cynical tacticians in the NIO calculate that one community is less capable of trouble than before, and- for all the obvious attempts to neutralise loyalist terrorists by stirring up factions- the other hasn’t given up any of its capacity for murder. Who are you going to piss off – especially as one gets closer to the tipping point where no concession can be given to nationalists without a disproportionately adverse reaction from Unionists?

    “Just as the Derry marchers face exclusion, not because of any prejudice on the part of Derry people but on the basis of cold hard economic facts – they bring no business to the city and disrupt what business already exists.”

    But they don’t face exclusion-you equate the annual bleatings from two or three anonymous Shinner publicans to Daily Ireland with the real world. Oh, I’m sure they would love us to bugger off, just like they would like to be free of rates, shoplifters, bolshie unions- but grown up businessmen like Brendan Duddy know we’ll always be there, and to metaphorically close the gates against us would be far worse for business and the community as a whole.

    To ban the ABOD celebrations would be a massive political defeat for nationalism’s claims that they created a shared city.So the only smart thing to do is the NIO “strategy for Shinners”-try to neutralise the capacity for sectarian harm- and as usual the chamber of commerce can go hang. Incidentally, this is further proof of the unwise decision to move the December celebrations forward at the traders’ request- and I well remember within a week of that hearing a suggestion to move it into November. No doubt traders would prefer mowing Christmas Day into the summer too, since the nice weather would bring out more shoppers

    “As happened at Drumcree it will be remembered when it wasn’t just the steadfastness of the Residents which prevailed but also the goodsense of hardheaded unionist businessmen who no longer wanted to see unionist politicans destroying their own communities.”

    The residents did bugger all- the police could have swept them off the streets in half an hour if they’d wanted. These imaginary Unionist businessmen ( you’re too coy to use their sectarian definition-‘cos whatever they were they weren’t Unionists)are presumably the same -say it, frankie, say it-Prods whom Martina Anderson is trying to woo- the Ken Newell fan club which isn’t representative and isn’t prepared to engage in politics, but will gurn about politicians over the g and t’s in Ballyholme Yacht club for hours. Alarm call- they don’t have any influence over the loyalist community, or the Unionist electorate- no matter how many quangos you put them on. Haven’t the DUP’s election results since 2000 taught you anything? Drumcree was another tipping point decision which changed from year to year- indeed, as Mowlam and Annesely showed within a week-depending on which community could inflict the most mayhem. Loyalists simply decided that it wasn’t a strategically important goal for them after a while, and too few orangemen thought strategically at all. What’s the chamces of that happening again- in your 50% +1 scenario? With nothing to lose, why practise self-restraint?

    “Is unionism marching out of history at last? Can they change course and stay unite”

    The failing of nationalism expressed in a nutshell. Misguided assumption of inevitable victory grounded in belef that all those defeats just can’t go on for ever, and a frankly sectarian condescension to the people who you have never defeated and never understood, but because you despise them you have to keep repeating the mantra. Dream on pal

  • munsterman

    Realist :

    “…The GAA – the only sports played in Ireland that do not integrate nationalists/republicans with unionists/loyalists…”

    If you genuinely want to integrate nationalists and unionists in sport in Ireland, then why not follow rugby’s example – and several other sports in fact – and have one Irish soccer team ?

    Too much integration there for some people, eh ?

    Incidentally, Finland and Ireland have very similar histories so you should have quite a lot to share with your hosts. Both countries were under foreign colonial rule for centuries.
    Mind you, Finland enjoyed autonomy under the Russian Empire in the 19 th century – own banking, postal, monetary system – when Ireland could not even get simple Home Rule ! – from the so-called ” mother ” of Democracy (with loads of gun-boats, just in case….)

    Finland also had it’s own version of the ” Ulster question ” – the Aland islands. Swedish-speaking part of Finland wanted to secede from Finland and join Sweden in 1920. Sweden and Finland nearly went to war over it. League of Nations arbitration ruled that Aland islands belonged to Finland – and not Sweden. Note the Swedish Conservative Party /the Swedish Establishment did not encourage the Alanders to illegally gun-run 35,000 German guns and go the terrorist route.

    I’m sure the Finns will be very interested to hear someone from Ireland tell them that partition was a model of democracy at work and has been a roaring success.

    ( Don’t bother with that in Molly Malone’s though….:-).

    Anyway, enjoy.

  • frank

    The 6 county supporters will probably feel more at home in the Angleterre (Fredrikinkatu 47). An “English” bar/pub with a huge Union Jack next to the entrance.

  • Keith M

    My goodness we’ve gone off on a tangent here. Would people by any chance be diverting us from the subject at hand?

    Munsterman seems to have the myopic view of World history which seems to aflict so many nationalists.

    What he says : “Finland also had it’s own version of the “ Ulster question “ – the Aland islands. Swedish-speaking part of Finland wanted to secede from Finland and join Sweden in 1920. Sweden and Finland nearly went to war over it. League of Nations arbitration ruled that Aland islands belonged to Finland – and not Sweden. Note the Swedish Conservative Party /the Swedish Establishment did not encourage the Alanders to illegally gun-run 35,000 German guns and go the terrorist route.”

    Now the facts; when Sweden granted independence to Finland there was a dispute over the Aland Islands. They didn’t want to “secede” from Finland as the sovreignty was under discussion. Over 90% of the islanders wanted to stay with Finland.

    The compromise that was reached was that while the islands notionally transferred to Finland, they became autonomous. For over 80 years the islanders run all their own affairs and there is no Finnish military presence on the islands. Finland represents the islands abroad and that’s more or less it.

    You will hardly hear a word of Finnish on the islands. The local radio and television stations are both in Swedish. It has it’s own flag, it’s own football league etc., and islanders represent both Sweden and Finland in other sporting events.

    Would nationalists really go for a return to a majority rule Stormont rule with Northern Ireland being represented by Dublin rather than London in international affairs, no Irish Gaelic and no integration with the Republic?

  • munsterman

    Keith M :

    “…The facts…” Really ?

    Getting your “facts” so fundamentally wrong only serves to undermine your argument.

    Sweden NEVER granted independence to Finland.
    Sweden LOST Finland to the Russian Empire in 1809.
    Finland gained it’s independence in 1917 – from Russia.

    An independent federal united Ireland – with a 50/50 power-sharing NI parliament ( using the Aland islands as one possible model ) would , I believe, be fine with nationalists.
    Safe-guards can be in-built to ensure both communities identities are protected and mutually respected.
    A united Ireland with an alienated and disgruntled unionist community is not the kind of Ireland that any nationalist worth his/her salt wants.

    I am amazed that unionists have never seriously considered this as an option – while there is still something left to negotiate.

  • Thrasymachus

    “How can they join a powersharing democracy when they still haven’t learnt what a democracy is, never mind powersharing?”

    Oh the DUP knows plenty about democracy, hence the reason it works constitutionally. Nationalists on the other hand, overwhelmingly endorse murder to get what they want.

  • lib2016

    …and nationalists will certainly go for a ‘return’ of a maority rule Stormont just as soon as they have the majority to sustain it, unless unionists enter a powersharing Assembly before that majority emerges.

    It was a unionist run Stormont which failed and it is unionists who will never again be permitted majority rule. They simply can’t be trusted to administer the law fairly, nor any other function of a modern state.

    Nationalists will not be constrained by Westminster, nor will Westminster wish to constrain a nationalist majority in any way. That’s why the troops are pulling out as unionism collapses. The new management will be taking over shortly – unionists can be part of it but that option may not last forever.

    It may even be that the DUP have already decided that being in perpetual opposition is their best bet since after all that is what they have done for their entire career.

  • lib2016

    Thras,

    Sinn Fein learned about democracy in British prisons as so many others have before them but where did the DUP learn about democracy? Standing on the street corners with cudgels in their hands while they stopped the rest of us getting to work?

    Darth,

    You’re quite right. Unionist support is down to the ‘ultras’ and they have managed to frighten the ‘nice’ people off. Won’t be long now before the ex-unionists are voting SDLP to keep both the Shinners and the DUPes out. It won’t be the SDLP I supported but I can live with that, can you?

  • Occasional Commentator

    Now that this thread has drifted off topic, we can continue the on-topic discussion on this new thread about Sunday’s event.

  • Thrasymachus

    “Nationalists will not be constrained by Westminster, nor will Westminster wish to constrain a nationalist majority in any way.”

    Oh but Nationalists are constrained by Westminster, that is why you are living under “occupation” and can’t get Unionists into the Assembly 🙂

    “That’s why the troops are pulling out as unionism collapses.”

    Leaving aside the fact there are more troops in Ulster than Iraq, they are no longer required as the croppies have lied down :o)

    “The new management will be taking over shortly”

    Nationalists have been saying that since the 1920’s, 80 years is fairly long for a “temporary” settlement :o)

    “Sinn Fein learned about democracy in British prisons as so many others have before them but where did the DUP learn about democracy?”

    Normal human beings don’t have to go to prison in order to learn to be democrats, only s-c-u-m do.

    “Standing on the street corners with cudgels in their hands while they stopped the rest of us getting to work?”

    I hardly think Nationalists, who vote 2 to 1 for murderers, are in any position to criticise the DUP about violence.

  • Keith M

    munsterman, I stand corrected on Finland gaining independence from Russia rather than Sweden, but I see that you don’t take issue with anything else in my comment.

    “An independent federal united Ireland – with a 50/50 power-sharing NI parliament ( using the Aland islands as one possible model ) would , I believe, be fine with nationalists.
    Safe-guards can be in-built to ensure both communities identities are protected and mutually respected.
    A united Ireland with an alienated and disgruntled unionist community is not the kind of Ireland that any nationalist worth his/her salt wants.”

    If you want to use the Aland islands as the model for how this would work, then the following would happen;

    Northern Ireland would be granted autonomy with the only role for the Republic being to represent it abroad.

    Dublin would appoint a ceremonial governor who would have no real power.

    N.I. would regain it’s democratically elected parliament with no “power sharing”.

    The only official language would be English and Irish Gaelic schools would be banned.

    People from the current republic would be banned from owning land in N.I.

    The Irish army would be forbidden from entering N.I.

    People from N.IU. would be entitled to eith a British or Irish passport and would be able to represent either Ireland or Great Britain in sporting events.

    Do you think that this would be acceptable to both camps in N.I. and to people in this country and in G.B.?

  • munsterman

    Keith M :

    You were the one giving me a lecture about
    ” facts “.

    The people in GB would be happy to be rid of NI in a flash. Period. ( Whether the British military/political establishment is as willing is an entirely different matter – but you knew that already.)
    Surely this is one of the unionists real fears – the majority in Britain (read England) say we’ve had enough, so shag off and pay your own bills.

    In principle, a federal independent united Ireland would, I believe, be acceptable to nationalists.
    The precise details could be up for discussion.
    If it had been handled democratically like this in 1920 we could have avoided a mess.
    Imposed partition designed to primarily meet Britain’s strategic needs was never a solution.

    Bear in mind that the Aland Islands is 100 % from 1 community and consequently some of the internal NI arrangements will not function on this model if done by simple majority-rule. You are back to Stormont-dictatorship (1920-1972) again – doomed to fail. Thus, the GFA, with it’s built-in protections would need to be included as part of the deal too.

    Thus, as I said, the Aland is one possible model but not all the elements would be relevant or would they work in a federal UI context.

    It looks like the unionist community is not willing, able or ready to make NI “green” enough for nationalists to identify with it.
    Thus, the nationalist community will continue to dismantle NI.

    Thus, the question is, how “orange” ( red, white, blue ) does NI within a federal UI need to be to satisfy unionists ?

  • Keith M

    munsterman “Imposed partition designed to primarily meet Britain’s strategic needs was never a solution.”

    Partition wasn’t imposed, it was introduced to satisfy the maximum number of people. Given it’s overwhelming initial endorsement in both countries and it’s subsequent re-endorsement in 1998, the idea that it was imposed is farcical.

    “Thus, the GFA, with it’s built-in protections would need to be included as part of the deal too.”

    The arrangements in the Belfast Agreement haven’t worked. At least democratic majority rule worked for over 50 years. There’s no reason it shouldn’t once again, given a bill of rights.

    “Thus, the nationalist community will continue to dismantle NI.”. They’ve done a pretty poor job so far. In 1921 people were belived that partition wouldn’t last. As recently as the 1990s politicians in this country were telling us to expect a “united Ireland” in their lifetimes. Now 80+ years on the only significant movement has been to enshire the princple of consent into the Irish constitution.

  • darth rumsfeld

    “The new management will be taking over shortly – unionists can be part of it but that option may not last forever.”

    gee thanks for the generous offer lib- but in the unlikely event that your dearly hoped for scenario comes about what is the fallback option? Oh I know- get the Brits to coerce those stiffnecked Prods to do what they’re told. Yup, same old nationalists- same old bankrupt arguments. Change the record-we’re bored with it

  • munsterman

    Keith M :

    Your grasp of Ireland’s history is even worse than your grasp of Finland’s history – and by your own admission, you got that all wrong.

    Please continue to vote for the Rev. Dr. No – the best gift unionism has given nationalism in years.
    Easy to see how Tony and Bertie have such an easy job.

  • munsterman on Aug 15, 2006 @ 05:22 PM wrote “ Please continue to vote for the Rev. Dr. No – the best gift unionism has given nationalism in years… “

    I don’t think that those living on the nort’side of Dublin, (who single handedly brought about the divorce and abortion referda) are allowed vote in elections in the Six Cos…Munster, you didn’t know that you were trouncing a westbrit, did you …much to my extreme dismay he’s living in the Fair City.

  • willowfield

    BOB

    I did not see anything promoting sinn fein at this event but i did come away with a feeling of sadness that these young men had to die.

    They didn’t have to die: they chose to die.