Lost in the ‘Sands’ of time…

It’s hard to move anywhere in Nationalist Northern Ireland without reference to the 25th anniversary of the Hunger Strikes. But as one paper noted, in Donegal some Republican activitists have missed out the most iconic of them all. Thanks to Steven for the heads up.

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  • Nevin

    Sans Jimmy.

  • The World’s Gone Mad

    ‘some Republican activitists have missed out the most iconic of them all’ – yeah, I noticed that Gandhi was missing..

  • I wonder would a hunger strike work for Steven Nolan?

  • iluvni

    Maybe Sands is standing sideways?

  • DaithiO

    iluvni.

    That’s just plain ignorant !

  • and…
    Not lost in the ‘Sands’ of time…
    remember the old jokes,

    they’re crap but…

    Q What is Bobby Sands’ idea of a underground subway?
    A A straw.

    Q What has a plank of wood and a Bobby Sands got in common?
    A They both are thin and cannot move.

    Q What does a Mcdonald’s Sands special consist of?
    A Nothing!

    Q Why did the Bobby Sands cross the road?
    A To burn off more calories!

    Is it not quite ironic that the SANDwich is a type of food?

  • Ziznivy

    Very good. No opportunity should be lost to ridicule the martyrs of murder.

  • DaithiO, it may be in bad taste (and I don’t particularly think it is given the subject matter) but ignorant?

    Ziznivy, most of the ridicule comes as a reaction to the fact that these are murderous psychopaths being worshipped as wonderful Irish heroes – your “martyrs of murder” quote being a prime example. So long as they’re kept in the public eye being held up to worship they’ll also be held up to ridicule.

  • bob

    Nobody has good memories of violence but fifty years of misrule leads men to make that difficult decision to take up arms. These men saw no option in the undemocratic politics of the unionist state in which they found themselves. As soldiers they have their right to be remembered.

  • The World’s Gone Mad

    ‘they have their right to be remembered.’ – you’re right, after all we still remember Jack the Ripper over a century after he was in business.

  • Keith M

    bob “These men saw no option in the undemocratic politics of the unionist state in which they found themselves.”

    Exactly what was undemocratic about the politics of N.I.?

    Also these terrorists committed suicide almost a decade after Stormont came to an end.

  • Irishman

    The Hunger Strikers did not receive universal support for their actions at the time. Since then there has always been a voice in the Nationalist community that the HSs were misguided to do what they did. Now Sinn Fein doesn’t represent all the views of the Nationalist community. They never have and they never will. For a very long time they were a minority party, reflecting a minority view. The HS commemorations are little more than a PR stunt for their party. Since the demise of the SDLP, Sinn Fein’s bullying influence continues to permeate even middle class Nationalist society and anyone who dares to voice an alternative view to the one held by Sinn Fein is rebuked and receives the vociferous admonishment from Sinn Fein supporters ( as is often witnessed here on Slugger!). Consequently the moderate nationalist view remains silent. People are either naïve or wilfully disingenuous to see the Hunger Strike Commemorations as anything other than a party political PR stunt by Sinn Fein. It was there influence at the time that allowed those men to die.

  • “As soldiers they have their right to be remembered.”

    Soldiers and hunger strike are two words that, to me, don’t go together. Prisoners and hunger strike do. Do the fatest armies win wars?

  • bob

    CyberScribe

    Do you remember what the purpose of the HS was?

  • Rory

    What will not be forgotten about the hunger strikers is that at a time when the struggle against British misrule was faltering these men launched upon a self-sacrificing campaign that inspired, renewed and galvanised that struggle and will long be marked as the turning point when the final stage of the struggle to end British domination in Ireland finally began.

    The international acclaim and awe that greeted their courage and determination rankles yet with those who feel threatened by the free expression of human dignity. The gross jibes of slavehearts do not bother me other than in the terrible sadness I feel that men have so far sullied their own souls as to indulge in such obscenity.

  • The “HS” Hunger Strike?

    I’m refering to the term “hunger strike” in general and that…

    Soldiers and hunger strike are two words that, to me, don’t go together. Prisoners and hunger strike do.

    The purpose of the “HS”, 20 odd years ago,doesn’t interest me.

  • Ziznivy

    Beano. Martyrs of murder was tongue in cheek. It certainly wasn’t meant to elevate them to hero status. I detest their “sacrifice” and the reverence with which they are remembered. Hell isn’t hot enough.

  • Richard Dowling

    Hunger Strikes!
    (A) When did the IRA ever go hungry in its own appetite for power?
    (B) And when did Sinn Fein, including the present bunch, ever tell the truth about their manipulation of Provisional activists (including the ‘iconic’ Bobby Sands)?

    Why do you think the Provos fell out with the iconic and compassionate Fr Denis Faul? Because they couldn’t bend HIS will to theirs. Couldn’t make him a tool of their ideology.

    Even Anthony McIntyre now readily admits that Father Denis Faul came to consider the Provos as fascists. And the Provos, for their part, actually forbade their members from attending the sacraments of the eucharist and reconciliation (aka, Mass and Confession). Why?

    In hindsight it’s easy to see why… they did not want reconciliation (as Father Faul did). They wanted power. Still do in fact. And THAT, as I see it, is what the hunger strikes were all about.

  • Urquyart

    “The gross jibes of slavehearts do not bother me other than in the terrible sadness I feel that men have so far sullied their own souls as to indulge in such obscenity.”

    Steady on Rory. They were just a couple of shitty jokes!

  • Harry Flashman

    Rory

    Don’t listen to them I loved your post, it reminded me of one of those poems me Uncle Jo used to recite when he’d a few to many on him, the Chritian Brothers learned him well.

    “The gross jibes of slavehearts” that’s a beauty.

    Give us a chorus of “The West’s Awake”, there’s never a dry eye in our house when we sing that one “in slumber deep, the west’s asleep. . .sing ho, let England quake! We’ll watch till death for Erin’s sake”. Brilliant.

    “Sullied their souls”, excellent mate, funny I’ve never heard the word “sullied” used in any context other than Rebel songs, “Cromwell’s men are here again. . .England’s name once more is sullied”, lovin’ it, where’s the beer?

    Give us some more Rory, I’m in the mood now.

    “Sean South” is great too, I love that one, amazing how a botched raid on Bessbrook peeler station beaten of by a couple of B-men can be transformed into an heroic assault on a Saxon fortress. “Saxon”, how come we never hear that any more? It used to be a popular name of abuse when we weren’t having a go at the Norman invaders.

  • sevenmagpies

    If they truly believed that they were soldiers, why weren’t they campaigning to be treated as prisoners of war i.e. required to wear uniforms, obliged to salute enemy officers and expected to work for the brits on non ‘war related’ tasks. I seem to recall their campaign was more about making life easy for themselves and loyalists.

  • Rory

    And the Provos, for their part, actually forbade their members from attending the sacraments of the eucharist and reconciliation (aka, Mass and Confession). Why?

    Why indeed, Richard Dowling? Why did you make up such a ridiculous assertion? Have you been practising by brushing up on The Protocols of the Elders of Zion? Whatever next? That the IRA gave special training to volunteers in homosexual love making techniques the better that they could seduce Brigade of Guards officers and MI5 and MI6 personnel? (Not a bad idea as it happens).

  • heres hoping

    they did not want reconciliation (as Father Faul did). They wanted power. Still do in fact. And THAT, as I see it, is what the hunger strikes were all about.

    Of course they wanted power and still do surely that is the purpose of any political party or movement. Father Faul was hardly in a position to talk about power when we look at how the catholic church strangled life in the south for years.

  • Mick,
    But as one paper noted, in Donegal some Republican activitists have missed out the most iconic of them all.
    Which paper,is the photo genuine? Was it via Reuters?

  • Occasional Commentator

    We may laugh at leaving out Bobby Sands, but how many remember that there were more than 10 Irish Republicans that died on hunger strike during the Troubles? There were hunger strikes before the Troubles too. For example, Some of the memorial posters have 12 names, which includes two from the 70’s.

  • heres hoping

    oc whats your point

  • Occasional Commentator

    heres hoping,
    I wasn’t really making much of a point at anyone or anything in particular. Just that even if Sands was included, it wouldn’t be a complete set of hunger strikers. It’d just be the full set of the 1981 hunger strikers.

    The poster doesn’t even specify that it’s supposed to be the 1981 ones only so if Sands was included it would still be an incomplete list.

  • T.Ruth

    Harry Flashman
    I think Saxon crops up in the “Soldiers’ Song”-Does that make it racist?

  • TAFKABO

    So singing a few verses of Would you like a pastie supper Bobby Sands is enought to sully my soul?
    In other words, come the day of reckoning I am going to be held account to for slagging of the hunger strikers?, God is going to look ufavourably upon me for daring to cock a snook at the hagiography that surrounds them?

    It never fails to amuse me when we hear Irish republicans bleat on about how the whole world (and they mean literaly the whole world) despises Unionists, but holds Bobby Sands in reverence. Notwishtanding most Irish Republicans have a very shaky grasp on the scale of the world, geopolitics, and their place in it. Now it seems that the very hosts of Heavens themselves are also on their side.

    Would ye never wonder, with all that back up, how come they lost?

  • heck

    I am amazed at the hate that unionists hold for nationalist as exhibited by this thread. SF has just announced an officer whose sole function is to reach out to unionists and then you read the crap here as dispair.

  • Michael McGowan

    ….but it is a bit like Adolf Hitler appointing an officer to reach out to the Jews.

  • SF has just announced an officer whose sole function is to reach out to unionists

    I don’t see it mentioned @
    http://www.sinnfein.ie/news/ I wonder who it is?

  • Reader

    heck: I am amazed at the hate that unionists hold for nationalist as exhibited by this thread.
    But don’t nationalists hate some unionists too? There’s Billy Wright, for instance, or Johnny Adair. So there’s no reason to suggest it’s all one way.

  • harpo

    ‘Nobody has good memories of violence but fifty years of misrule leads men to make that difficult decision to take up arms. These men saw no option in the undemocratic politics of the unionist state in which they found themselves.’

    bob:

    A lot of words there but Bobby Sands decided that as a soldier who had taken up arms, his best option was to bomb a furniture shop.

    Hardly a strike against a military target, was it? Some soldier. If he thought there was a war on he engaged in war crime. The rest of us just see it as terrorism.

    ‘As soldiers they have their right to be remembered’

    Do they? You can remember them as pretend soldiers all you want. So long as you do we will mock these terrorist scumsters.

  • harpo

    ‘Just that even if Sands was included, it wouldn’t be a complete set of hunger strikers. It’d just be the full set of the 1981 hunger strikers.’

    Occasional Commentator:

    Wrong wrong wrong.

    If skinny Bobby was there it WOULD NOT be the full set of the 1981 hunger strikers.

    If you are going to be pedantic get it right. If the full 10 were there it would only be the full set of the DEAD 1981 hunger strikers. But not all of them.

    Remember that there were a total of 23 men in the class of 1981 hunger strikers. Only 10 graduated, the other 13 failed. So less than half of them managed to kill themselves.

    There have been interviews with some of the 13 failures in the recent past. A few of them have made their name in IR circles based on their participation in that class. The fact that they failed is ignored.

  • harpo

    Maybe Thomas McElwee is not eating for two.

  • rock

    Hey perhaps the most rev. ian paisley will go on hunger strike rather than share power with those horrible terrorists, oh sorry it will be his nominated “fall guy” to sell out. Maybe sammy wilson could offer to thin down a bit!!!! He will be used to wearing only a blanket or even less!

  • Occasional Commentator

    harpo,
    Indeed. I remember thinking just that as I was putting my comment through various drafts but I must have left it out. Anyway, thank you. Our fellow slugger readers get two pedants for the price of one 🙂

    I wouldn’t call those 13 failed hunger strikers. They were either pulled out for medical reasons (ulcer causing pain or something) or the strikes were cancelled at that stage. They could only be called failures if they couldn’t help eating. Or if they starved themselves for a year and still didn’t die – why don’t you try it and see how difficult it is to fail on hunger strike.

  • Mick,
    But as one paper noted, in Donegal some Republican activitists have missed out the most iconic of them all.
    Which paper,is the photo genuine? Was it via Reuters?

    Posted by CyberScribe on Aug 08, 2006 @ 02:51 PM

  • Mick,
    But as one paper noted, in Donegal some Republican activitists have missed out the most iconic of them all.
    Which paper,is the photo genuine? Was it via Reuters?

    Posted by CyberScribe on Aug 08, 2006 @ 02:51 PM

    Posted by CyberScribe on Aug 09, 2006 @ 08:17 PM

  • Mick,
    But as one paper noted, in Donegal some Republican activitists have missed out the most iconic of them all.
    Which paper,is the photo genuine? Was it via Reuters?

    Posted by CyberScribe on Aug 08, 2006 @ 02:51 PM

    Posted by CyberScribe on Aug 09, 2006 @ 08:17 PM

    Posted by CyberScribe on Aug 10, 2006 @ 12:55 PM

    or is it lost in the sands of time 😉

  • RSF

    For all the sacrifices of brave comrades during the dirty war against the british it has now come to surrender by the provisionals, are they deluded that we will have a majority, day by day more and more young catholics are brain washed into becoming ‘northern irish’ more and more europeans are coming to ‘northern ireland part of UK’ These things will rule out there ever being a majority so we have no choice but to keep up the war

  • DK

    “For all the sacrifices of brave comrades during the dirty war against the british it has now come to surrender by the provisionals, are they deluded that we will have a majority, day by day more and more young catholics are brain washed into becoming ‘northern irish’ more and more europeans are coming to ‘northern ireland part of UK’ These things will rule out there ever being a majority so we have no choice but to keep up the war”

    Oh for the good old days. Things were simpler then. Young people. No respect. That’s barely an undergarment. Where’s me pills?

  • Rory

    These things will rule out there ever being a majority so we have no choice but to keep up the war

    Ah, RSF, I see the basis for your strategy –

    “If we can’t outfuck them then we’ll outfight them.”

    Except that you won’t of course. If you do go to war, and I trust you do not, you will be destroyed very quickly indeed and will have no sympathy from the nationalist people who have voted overwhelmimgly to support the GFA and to trust Sinn Fein’s strategy in plotting the course towards Irish unity. More misery occasioned by the wilful selfish misguidedness of republican dissidents will not be tolerated nor easily forgiven. High time you had a rethink.

  • Robsa

    We’ll NEVER forget you, Jimmy Sands…