Ruthie and her faithful tribe

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I see my old university chum Ruth Dudley Edwards is explaining to anyone who’ll read her how nice the Orange Order is and what good fun Orangemen are. Which makes sense, since she wrote a book about them called The Faithful Tribe. Ruthie is more than generous in her praise of the Order, because this year it allowed her to speak at the Orange rally in Irvinestown. This despite the fact that  she’s “an atheist from a Roman Catholic background”.  The key idea in Ruthie’s panegyric is that the Orange Order are misunderstood. Thankfully, she says, more and more critics are coming to see the error of their ways, leaving only cynics and sneerers to be critical of the Order. Ruthie now has hopes that the invitation she got in Fermanagh will be extended next year by Belfast.

Ruthie is a historian – we were classmates in UCD  a long time ago – and of course knows the importance of including all the facts when arriving at a judgement. So it was probably a memory-slip that led to her leaving out such facts as the expulsion of 7,000 Catholics from Armagh by Orange Order pogroms.

Or a Portadown  Orange march in the nineteenth century that resulted in the death of Hugh Donnelly, a Catholic from Drumcree. At the time,  the Armagh magistrate William Hancock noted:

“For some time past the peaceable inhabitants of the parish of Drumcree have been insulted and outraged by large bodies of Orangemen parading the highways, playing party tunes, firing sits, and using the most opprobrious epithets they could invent…a body of Orangemen marched through the town and proceeded to Drumcree church, passing by the Catholic chapel though it was a considerable distance out of their way”

Sound familiar? That’s probably why the British government banned the faithful tribe for several years in the nineteenth century.  And I expect if Ruthie had thumbed through Andy Boyd’s book Holy War in Belfast, she’d have been reminded how Orange marches and violence, sometimes lethal, moved hand in hand over the centuries. As a historian she’d of course know that the Order was established and maintained as an effective method to prevent Protestant and Catholic working class people seeing how much they have in common.

And there almost certainly was something more important on her mind when she forgot to include the rules of the Orange Order, which forbid not only a Catholic from joining (the notion that it’s a purely religious organisation is somewhat given away by the further refusal of membership to anyone who was a United Irelander). Then there’s the stuff about being loyal to the Sovereign –  providing s/he is a Protestant.

Like Ruthie, I’m aware that thousands of Orangemen merely use the Twelfth as an occasion for meeting friends, eating ice-cream, drinking a bottle of stout,  chatting to (Protestant) neighbours. Many, maybe most Orangemen give little heed to the origins, ordinances or history of the Order to which they belong. But if it’s true that Orangemen wish for better relations with their Catholic (or atheist) neighbours, it’d help if they (and Ruthie) looked at and sought to change radically the antiquated, inward-looking, ultra-conservative, sectarian nature of the organisation to which they belong. And who knows? If the Orange Order were made the social/cultural medium which the likes of Ruthie would have us believe it is at present, we might all be happy to accept an invitation to join in on the Twelfth in Belfast.

29 Responses to Ruthie and her faithful tribe

  1. RJC July 21, 2014 at 3:22 pm #

    Sure aren’t the Orange Order just a good Christian organisation, expressing their culture by getting nice fellas like Eddie McIlwaine to steward their peaceful marches past Catholic churches?

    • Ceannaire July 21, 2014 at 4:56 pm #

      Not only a steward, RJC – but a member “of good standing”, according to his brethren.

      • Norma wilson July 23, 2014 at 10:41 am #

        I just found this, and it has answered every thing for me. I must tell you I had no idea, that Irish people held this amount of hate!The Irish-Palestinian Connection
        Email | Print

        The Irish-Palestinian Connection

        Why are so many Irish activists supporting the Palestinian cause? And why are so many of the Irish human rights activists so biased and anti-Israel behind a mask of human rights activity?[1] Why was the Rachel Corrie, an Irish-owned ship part of the Gaza Flotilla in an attempt to challenge a sovereign state and member of the United Nations, Israel, and trying to break a legal blockade of Gaza?

        One of the co-organizers of the Gaza Flotilla is the Free Gaza Movement, where the Irish human rights activist Caoimhe Butterly is Gaza Co-Coordinator. She “lived in the Jenin refugee camp for a year in 2002 before being shot by Israeli soldiers, then deported.” [freegaza website, June 23, 2010]. She worked also in Zimbabwe, Chiapas, Guatemala, and Iraq.

        Other notorious Israel-bashers, members and endorsers of the Free Gaza Movement are Noam Chomsky, Norman Finkelstein, Mairead Maguire (an Irish Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, who was on board the Rachel Corrie), Aengus Ó Snodaigh (an Irish political leader and activist. He is currently serving his second term as a TD in the Dáil, Ireland’s parliament. Ó Snodaigh previously served as the Sinn Féin[2] representative on the National Forum on Europe and the party’s spokesperson on the Nice Treaty. He is currently the Sinn Féin Chief Whip in Leinster House), Gretta Duisenberg (a dutch international human rights activist, who is outspoken anti-Israel), Jamal El-Khoudary (Palestinian and Chairman of the Popular Committee Against the Siege and member of the Gaza parliament) and Greta Berlin (one of the founders of the Free Gaza Movement and mother of two children whose father was born and raised in Palestine). Other Irish Activists supporting the Gaza Flotilla are Claire Cumiskey, Alan Lonergan, and Niamh Moloughney.[3]

        Many of the Irish activists (most of them catholic) supporting the Palestinian cause are leftist “revolutionaries” influenced by the Irish revolutionary propaganda and long history of fighting a revolutionary war against what they consider the British occupation of Ireland (in the past) and Northern Ireland. And when the Irish succeeded in kicking the colonial master Britain out they came to identify themselves with the Palestinians as underdogs.

        It’s a fact that the Provisional Irish Revolutionary Army (IRA)[4] supported the Palestinian cause and received weapons and training from the PLO[5] as early as the 1970′s.

        “The Irish Republican Army made common anti-colonialist cause with the Palestinian Liberation Organization, with the PLO allegedly providing arms and training for the IRA as early as the 1970s. And so, logically, Irish Protestant leaders allied themselves with the Israelis.”[6]

        So in respons the Ulster “protestants movement” of Northern Ireland identified themselves with Israel’s right to self-defense and Israel’s right of existence and are supporting Israel in the war against terrorism.

        In a BBC report about the strong Irish dimension in the recent Gaza Flotilla and the connections between Ireland and the Palestinian cause,[7] Eoghan Harris (independent member of the Irish Senate) expresses his concerns about the connection between the Palestinian issue and the Irish people.

        “I would probably be the only voice currently in the upper house of the Irish parliament to support Israel. The fact is there’s a whole consensus now in Ireland against Israel.”

        Eoghan Harris says after the formation of Israel in 1948 some in Ireland were strongly on side with the new state, seeing a parallel with their own recent struggle against Britain.

        “At first Zionism seemed quite an attractive philosophy. We’d been doing something like it ourselves … Each country had ambitions to revive its national language, Hebrew and Gaelic. Though they succeeded and we failed. There was always quite a strong anti-Semitic faction in Ireland, even if suppressed … But then over the years the whole liberal left in Ireland shifted into anti-Israeli mode, as it’s done in Europe generally … There’s a Pavlovian reaction, as a rule the Irish like to side with small nations against any big nation. A lot of it is empty posturing.”

        “The Israelis are seen almost as evil, as Unionism was, but the Unionists were never evil, they were just terribly bad at public relations. They said, ‘We’re a democratic state under attack; you should support us.’ But their narrative was bad; they weren’t media friendly … Today the Israelis have the best story in the world to tell, but they tell it terribly badly. They need an Alastair Campbell or a Peter Mandelson.”

        Another factor may be Israel’s closeness to the USA. Fintan Lane of the Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign[8] says that

        “Israel is closely associated with the United States, and even Obama hasn’t managed to recreate the levels of support for America you got here before Bush … But also it’s down to Israel’s policies. I was on the flotilla and just look at the support we’ve had in the last couple of weeks … Palestinian solidarity activists in other European countries have always remarked on the depth of support here for Palestine … People see the Israelis as meting out what Ireland suffered from British colonialists. It’s true that historically some in Israel saw the rebel leader Michael Collins and Eamon de Valera [Ireland’s first Taoiseach] as heroes … the admiration the other way had evaporated by the 1970s as Palestinian resistance gathered momentum. Once interest here was mainly on the Left and from Republicans. Now even right-wing politicians make pro-Palestinian comments. In Northern Ireland the Nationalist community has often had Palestinian flags flying in the street – and in retaliation the Loyalist community tends to fly Israeli flags. They associate Palestinians with Irish Republicanism.”

        In a lecture[9] given by Dr. Rory Miller[10] before the John Hewitt Summer School[11] about the Ireland-Palestine connection, he goes into great detail on the number of reasons for the Palestine issue as a major preoccupation in Ireland:

        “Over the last half century the Israel-Palestine conflict has occupied a place in the Irish consciousness far greater than its geographic, economic or political position appears to merit. Even, prior to 1956, when Ireland was a powerless/peripheral state without a UN seat [entry vetoed in 1946 by USSR] and struggling to make a go of its new status as an independent republic the Palestine issue was a major preoccupation in Ireland.

        Why? A number of reasons–many of which are as true today as they were then:

        1. Irish struggle for independence from Britain lead to an innate Irish hostility towards partition as a solution to territorial conflict.

        Irish reject “1937 Royal commission on Palestine partition proposal” at league of Nations in 1937. Eamon De Valera[12] attacks the partition as ”the cruelest wrong.”

        2. Importance attached to the Holy Land, and in particular, Christian Holy Places in Jerusalem and “The Vatican Factor.”

        In June 1949 Foreign minister Sean MacBride told the Irish Parliament “…strongly supports the general demand that the holy places in Palestine should be suitably protected…the whole area of Jerusalem should be brought under international control” closely following the official Vatican position on internationalization since 1948.[13]

        3. Identification with Jews in History and the Irish attitude to developing Diplomatic Relations with Israel.

        The Irish have undoubtedly seen parallels between their own history of large-scale migration and suffering in response to the Famine and the Penal Laws and that of the Jews under the Russian Tzars and later under the Nazis.

        But the Irish attitude was not in favor of the new-born state of Israel. In February 1949, the Cabinet agrees to grant Israel de facto recognition [minimum level of recognition]. Main Irish objective: Avoid any action that construed as Legal recognition and acceptance of Israeli control of Jerusalem.

        In 1952, with the death of Weizmann[14], the Irish president O’Ceallaigh[15] was adviced against writing a condolences in case it’s viewed as recognition of Weizmann as Israel’s head of state. Eamon De Valera refuses an invitation to a memorial service in the Dublin synagogue.

        The Irish Policy of not sending note of congratulations on Israeli independence day. This refusal of Ireland to commit to legal recognition of Israel frustrated senior Israeli officials who not understand Irish position.

        In May 1963 the Irish government granted Israel de jure recognition. This was not a significant departure from ireland’s cautious stance up to this point. The Irish excluded explicit or implicit acceptance of Israeli sovereignty over Jersualem from the statement [this decision was made at the time]. Following de jure recognition of Israel there was no rise in practical ties with Israel:

        a) Spring 1963 – no message of sympathy sent on death of president Ben-Zvi.
        b) Summer 1966 – Taoiseach decline invitation to dedication of forest in Israel to Eamon de Valera.
        c) Refusal to appoint honorary consul or trade representative in Tel Aviv despite numerous applications.
        d) Careful not allow Israel to use rising trade ties as back door to gaining further recognition.
        e) Not mistake cautious rise in bilateral ties with anti-Israel attitude in international norms and standards.
        f) Rise in ties Israel demand similar effort vis a vis Arabs: not a priority region.

        The Irish government formalised diplomatic relations with Israel on a non-residential ambassadorial basis in December 1974. In the eleven months prior to the decision on Israel, Ireland had commenced, or upgraded, diplomatic relations with Lebanon (January), Qatar, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia (September), Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates (October) and Egypt (December). In January 1975 Ireland entered into non-residential diplomatic relations with Algeria and Tunisia more significantly, in February 1976 an Irish resident mission was opened in Iran. In June 1980 Ireland entered into non-residential diplomatic relations with the Republic of Iraq. In december 1993, following the Oslo Accords—exchange of residential missions with Israel—last to do so in the European Union.

        4. Identification with the Palestinian cause.

        The Irish struggle for independence also infused them with a deep identification with the Arab nationalist struggle … The Irish anti-colonial experience also left the Irish with a deep hostility towards partition as a solution to territorial conflict, which in turn led to consistent support for the Palestinian cause. The factors set out above influenced both the Irish attitude to the Israel-Palestine conflict and the Israeli and Palestinian attitude to the Irish role in that conflict.

        Some of the Irish diplomatic moves and attitude to the Israel-Palestine conflict:

        a) The Suez Crisis (UK/France/Israeli invasion of Egypt late 1956), FM Liam Cosgrave called it a “deplored and condemned” invasion.
        b) 1967-1973 – Rising of Irish preoccupation with the Palestinian refugee crisis. Irish policy on refugees increasingly at odds with Israel. Israel—peace settlement followed by solution to refugee crisis; Ireland—solution to refugee crisis prerequisite to peace settlement.
        c) Following the Irish EEC entry in 1973:
        – Frustration over ongoing failure to resolve refugee crisis.
        – Combined with anger at Israeli occupation of West Bank and Gaza.
        – Rising western sympathy for 3rd world causes and anti-colonial ideology.
        – Success of PLO twin policy of terror and international diplomacy.
        – Irish go along with French attempt to move the EEC towards its pro-Arab position.
        d) October 1974 – Vote with France and Italy [all rest of EC abstain or vote against] for the Resolution in favour of PLO participation in plenary UNGA meetings on Palestine question. Israeli respond “greatly disappointed … Ireland lend support for organization of murderers.”
        e) Arafat visits Dublin in 1993 and said

        “during our long march we have had real friends in Ireland who have given us unlimited support in difficult days when many others would not even listen to us…they have supported us on many occasions and on many levels.”

        f) 2000 – The Irish government, like EU partners, have linked condemnations of Palestinian violence with criticisms of Israeli policies and actions that were viewed to have either provoked, fuelled or prolonged the Palestinian resort to terror as ‘excessive and disproportionate’. In particular the government has condemned ‘extra-judicial killings’—what Israel terms as “targeted assassination.” It has also drawn attention to settlement building—as a “cause of massive Palestinian resentment’ as well as ‘a major focus of violent incidents”. Most notably between 2000 and his death in November 2004 Ireland was committed to supporting the role of President Arafat as “ the indispensable partner for dialogue.”

        • Jude Collins July 23, 2014 at 10:52 am #

          Norma – I think it’d be better to give the link and maybe a few of your own thoughts with something as long as this. It tends to clutter up the site a bit. The link will allow people to read it if they wish, and allow you to direct their attention to particular points in it. OK?

  2. William Fay July 21, 2014 at 4:16 pm #

    Same song Jude, different tune, let’s have another go at the Orange.
    You obviously don’t like it very much that RDE has stepped out of line and has and is writing on the Loyal Orders with a level of understanding, how dare she not follow the same nationalist/republican route (traditional) as very other southerner.
    Back to history lessons again Jude, the ‘pogroms’ conducted by the Orange, who in reality were still Peep O’Day Boys needs to be looked at in an historical manner, and consider what else was going on in Ireland, maybe you should have put it in comparative terms, I’m willing to help you at any stage you wish.
    Yes, as I’ve stated before, the Orange will need to modernise to survive, there is no doubt to that. But could you advise me how many Protestants are in the AOH, 1916 clubs, and other republican organisations, and indeed what percentage of Protestants are in the GAA. I now what the response will be in relation to the last organisation, ask Darren Graham how welcome he was made in the GAA club in Newtownbutler.

    • Jude Collins July 21, 2014 at 7:20 pm #

      Sweet William – gimme a break. I’ve a limited repertoire. But then, come to think of it, so do you. I don’t like RDE ‘stepping out of line’? Haaaahhaaaa. That is comical. For God’s sake man, Dublin 4 currently is coming down with Ruths – don’t you read the papers? Tut-tut – try to keep up, William. As to the pogroms – sorry, while the OO emerged from the Peep O Day Boys, it was – historical fact – OO established 1795 – Peep O Day Boys still operating but a separate grouping. I agree there were all sorts of things going on in Ireland then – including a Catholic group called the Defenders. I wonder why they had that name. Let me think…No, nothing I’m afraid. You probably know, being a historian an’ all. As to Protestants in GAA, AOH etc – the answer is very few. Just as there are very few DUP politicians who will so much as pass the time of day with people whom they are in government with. I very much agree with you if you’re suggesting more Protestants should join these organisations, and I’ve no doubt there are bigots within the GAA as everywhere, but the fact is that the rules of the GAA etc don’t exclude Protestants. The OO does, which is sectarian and self-defeating. Now, sweet William. Can I go? Thanks much.

      • William Fay July 21, 2014 at 8:06 pm #

        Indeed Jude, do keep up, because I may hear and read some of the comments from the leafy suburbs of Dub 4, I don’t see many of them showing their faces at a 12th parade.

        • Jude Collins July 21, 2014 at 8:47 pm #

          Well now sweet William, you and I both know Ruthie’s heart remains in D4…

  3. Perkin Warbeck July 21, 2014 at 4:28 pm #

    Forsooth, the lady known as Ruth Dudley Edwards did not from the reserche Tree of Research alone pluck her passion for the passion fruit of truth. The same might be said of her distinguished brother and fellow historian, Owen Dudley Edwards for they both sprang from the loins of the leonine Robin Dudley Edwards.

    Robin, the Daddy of all the Duds, once sat and indeed on occasion was known to recline in a semi-recumbent posture in the bog-oak Chair of Irish History in the hallowed halls of UCD. Thus, it may be said that the Dudley Edwardses (or should that read: the Dudleys Edward?) come not in single spies but in battalions or at least, in threes. Not least in the reserche Tree of Research upon whose topmost branch used to chirp the very same Robin..

    One is still in possession of a very pleasant memory of a particular chirp from dear old Duds. The occasion was a public lecture by the then Boy Roy Foster, enfant terrible of the holy terrorists, the topic was ‘On the Necessity for Re-Anglicising Ireland’ and the setting was the aula maxima of UCD. Seated among the respectful audience was the Daddy of all the Duds, by then Professor Emeritus.

    Now, it must be pointed out, in the interests of historical truth, for that indeed is the currency in which we are dealing with here, that the Patriarchal Professor was extremely far advanced in years, if not in drink, on that occasion. Robin, in that homely phrase beloved of our ancestors, was well and truly ‘for the birds’. Poor man. Appearance wise, there was, it is fair to say, something of the uncouth about him, in truth, not unlike, say, Worzel Gummidge.

    And as the Boy Roy Foster waded into the ‘imposter called Pearse’ and the urgent imperative to reclaim the barbaric Dun Laoghaire by renaming it in its original ‘Kingstown’, henceforth to be the capital of the coast of Dublin 4 aka ‘Costa Gloucester’ etc etc etc, the dear old Professor Emeritus could be seen to become more agitated.

    Not, mind, with the content but with the length of the lecture. Thus, it would not take a sleuth to deduce from which source the following explosive heckle erupted:

    ‘Put your skates on, young man ! Don’t you realise my haemorrhoids are killing me !’

    Ah, dear old Duds, One cannot think of him without breaking into both a smile and wind, though not necessarily in that order..

    It is an effect which both her historian offspring, Ruth and Owen, had inherited.

    • Jude Collins July 21, 2014 at 7:08 pm #

      You’re in top form today, Perkin. One small correction – the loins were those of Owen Dudley Sr. So there’s two of them.Or was. Hardly bearable, what?

      • Perkin Warbeck July 21, 2014 at 10:49 pm #

        Jude, a chara, what I am about to tell you will hurt me far more than you for in truth it is just not the Warbeckian way to be pedantic in any shape, outline or form, not least in the pedagogic meaning of the w..

        Both Ruth Dudley Edwards and Owen Dudley Edwards sprang from the loins and the loins only of the leonine Robin Dudley Edwards.

        How do I know this ? Without having done any research, conducted DNA test or other such excercises in tedium, I just KNOW.

        It is the Dudley Edwards way, specifically the Ruth Dudley Edwards way.

        Take, f’rinstance, the 2006 fillum by Ken Loach, ‘The Wind that Shakes the Barley’ against which RDE opened up with both barrels in the lowly pages of The Daily Mail. Then, climbing to the rarified pages of The Guardian a week later, no doubt the better to gain a vantage point for her (metaphorical) sniper’s rifle which was a manoevre curiously reminiscent of a Kilmichael ambush type gig, Ruth, with the disarming candour of the Seeker after Truth, admitted she had not actually seen the fillum when penning the hatchet job in The Daily Mail.

        Furthermore she had no intention of every going to see the fillum on the basis that ‘she just cannot stand its sheer predictability’.

        Right on, Ruthie baby, way to go.

        Mind you, not all that sure about the predictability. What worried the inner critic in PW most about the fillum was the setting of a hurling game in West Cork. Dead wrong, Ken. This is strictly bogball territory, No sthickfighting dere ever, like.

        Now, to return to the book in question – The Faithful Tribe – never having gone to the b. of actually reading the anti-Romist tome, I still know exactly what is contained within its fetching orange shaded covers, ie, the rather refined strain of rhubarb which RDE has been cultivating so assiduously all her honour laden career as a historian.

        No less an objective historian than the distinguished – roll of drums – Professor Emeritus John…A……Murphy agrees with one !. In a dispassionate piece he penned for the Irish (twitter ye not!) Independent at the time of publication this is the restrained conclusion he arrived at: ‘enormously readable, entertaining and informative’.

        Ya took da very words. out of my m., ya langer ya !

        Afraid you are in a minority here, Jude.

      • RJC July 22, 2014 at 6:10 am #

        There are reams of poetry and prose yet to be written about Dun Laoghaire. In the midst of encroachment by D4, D6, Blackrock, Foxrock and yes! even Monkstown – Dun Laoghaire stood sure and steadfast. Anyone for a Teddy’s?

  4. Norma wilson July 21, 2014 at 5:52 pm #

    Would you change the record please! One would almost think you wanted to join the OO.
    I would rather talk about Alex Maskey sharing Ramadan with Muslims.
    You had plenty to shout about Pastor Peter, I now would like to hear from your followers regarding the synagogue on the Sommerton Road.
    In fact I don’t want to hear from any of you’s ever again, I shall stick with my own, for I have nothing in common with any of you’s.
    The more I watch TV today the more I realize why things are the way they are.

    • Jude Collins July 21, 2014 at 7:06 pm #

      Oh dear – there’s a lot of peeved people about today. Norma – without reservation I would say the attack on a synagogue in Somerton Road – I didn’t even know there was one – was stupid, sectarian, brain-dead – any word you want to use. I’ll be sorry if you pack your tent and leave but that’s your choice. Shalom indeed.

      • ben madigan July 21, 2014 at 9:59 pm #

        North Belfast was always the “Jewish Quarter”. The first synagaogue was near carlise circus, in a side street running alongside what was then the TSB (sorry name escapes me). When the new synagogue was built (on the Somerton Rd, near what was then Dunlambert Secondary school) the old one became the mater hospital nurses training school.
        Until the 1970s lots of jewish families – rich business families, professionals, middle class and working class people lived in the area, particularly Glandore, lower Forwilliam park, Somerton Road, Oldpark Road area, upper Antrim road. They had a culture centre at the bottom of the Cliftonville Road. The troubles drove many away. Belfast’s loss.

  5. neill July 21, 2014 at 6:17 pm #

    Lets be frank about this nothing the Orange Order could do would ever please you I think that has been proved beyond any reasonable arguement however lets try to do something different here.

    The 2014 National Hunger Strike Commemoration has been announced to be in Derrylin Co. Fermanagh this year complete with buses to the event.

    Diane Woods the niece of local IRA murder victims Thomas and Emily Bullock told the Belfast Telegraph she felt sick at the prospect.

    From the Belfast Telegraph:

    A gang of up to six masked men carried out the brutal attack on Mr and Mrs Bullock.
    They arrived at the isolated farmhouse in Aghalane just outside Derrylin at around 6pm on September 21, 1972. Mrs Woods said her aunt constantly worried about her husband’s safety, often lying on the landing of the house in a sleeping bag to watch for Mr Bullock returning home.
    “My aunt always had this awful fear,” she said. “She always used to say if they come to get Tommy it will be over my dead body, and that’s exactly how it happened.
    “My uncle was watching the news. They knocked the door and when my aunt answered they blasted her. They then literally stepped over her body and went on into the living room and shot Tommy.
    “I can still visualise being in the morgue with my uncle lying with a bullet through his temple.
    “When the gang were leaving the area they blew their horns and cheered.”
    In the days after the double murder a vile call was made to an abattoir in the area telling them they had two bullocks for them to process. Nobody was ever convicted for the attack.

    The News Letter reports that even the funeral courtage was blocked in the village

    Michelle Gildernew the local MP welcomed the event and commented:

    “The annual commemoration is not only a dignified parade to honour Irish Hungerstrikers but a series of events including lectures, displays and youth events that allow people to remember the sacrifice made by these men.
    “The commemoration attracts up to 10,000 people so there is also an economic benefit to the local businesses as many people travel to the area.
    “The organising committee is already working with the local community to minimise any disruption during the parade and ensure that the event is successful.
    “The Hungerstrike was a pivotal moment in Irish history and it is right and fitting that it has now come to Fermanagh and I would appeal to local people to come out and support the event.”

    Presumably the economic benefits will extend to entertainment, no doubt including food.

    No doubt if you read Sluggerotoole you will have realised this comes from Turgon.

    Whilst i dont agree wholeheartedly with his politics he does come up with some interesting points.

    If the Orange Order is open to attacks from the Catholic community on its marching surely this event to take celebrate men who were sent to prison for being killers is to be condemened as well.

    In fact Zeno sums it up well

    Well said. That is exactly what is happening. The laugh is that while they are rubbing themuns noses in the shit they are claiming to be working towards a shared future with them…………. lol

    Perhaps that is the real question which needs to be answered and why does SF need to pander to its more uncooth supporters is it because there will be no United Ireland for a considerable period of time?

    • Jude Collins July 21, 2014 at 7:04 pm #

      Oh dear Neill. What about that blog you promised me? …OK, back to today’s topic – which actually was the OO. I think if you read what I’ve said, you ‘ll find that I have a lot of empathy with most Orangemen – they just want a social vehicle which the OO provides. But no one -no, not even you,Neill, I know, shocking – no one is going to tell me black is white and that the OO isn’t in its history, ordinances and origins a sectarian institution. Which is a pity because there’s a lot of real potential for coming together there. Unfortunately, the pic that went with the blog is a bit more typical of some attitudes within it. I agree, there may be sectarian elements within the GAA etc – but I don’t think I’ve read rules in the GAA that forbids Protestants from joining, orpeople married to Protestants, etc. That’s the point I’m trying to make – obviously with little success in your case. As to Derrylin: would you allow any republican commemorations? Anywhere? I’d be interested in hearing. OK, time to turn to your soul-mate, William…

      • neill July 21, 2014 at 7:24 pm #

        Yes of course I would allow them to march why wouldnt I?

        You cant have a shared future without tolerance marching is important to the unionist community so if the event is important to Republicans I will stand over their right for them to march freely.

        • Jude Collins July 21, 2014 at 7:27 pm #

          I said nothing about marhing, neill – try to pay attention, will you? I disapprove of marching, full stop. I approve of respectful commemoration of whatever people hold dear.

          • neill July 22, 2014 at 6:50 am #

            You still dont get it to you Jude and you never will banning marching which is important to the unionist community is like banning GAA for the Nationalist community.

            When you understand that concept then we can proceed.

  6. neill July 21, 2014 at 7:20 pm #

    Sadly the world or work is a cruel mistress and leaves me little time however it will come.

  7. Iolar July 21, 2014 at 7:38 pm #

    “Cynics and sneerers?” What on earth does Ruth Dudley Edwards mean? I would have expected at least a more forensic approach with perhaps some evidence? In ‘Ireland since the famine’ (Lyons:1971:291) the author quotes H. Senior, ‘Orangeism in Ireland and Britain, 1795-1836’ (London, 1996). The function of the Orange Order was to serve as ‘a barrier to revolution and an obstacle to compromise.’ I guess it is possible that some people may have missed, the Age of Enlightenment, the Agricultural and Industrial Revolutions, the American Revolution, the French Revolution and more recent revolutions in Science and Technology. The O.O. does not appear to have been much of a barrier to revolution. The O.O. has indeed helped to create barriers, some blocking roads, most blocking progress. Perhaps that is the difference in history and herstory?

  8. Norma wilson July 21, 2014 at 7:47 pm #

    If it’s proportionality you want, don’t be half-assed about it.
    July 21, 2014, 6:55 pm 5

    There is little doubt that the Palestine supporter’s favourite word is ‘disproportionate’. Everything Israel does in battle is disproportionate, as if war is like playing video games with a ten year old child wherein being the grown-up you need to let him win a few times (or if you’re Israel and the ten year old happens to be a terrorist organisation you should let him land a few rockets on your hospitals and schools).

    A few days ago Britain’s Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg was in the news accusing Israel of not playing fair. Fully aware that his career is in tatters having gotten into bed with his ideological nemeses the Tories, Clegg perhaps sensed an opportunity to score some points with Britain’s left wing by taking a hard line with the world’s only Jewish country: “I have to say though I really do think now the Israeli response appears to be deliberately disproportionate.” Brave words from the captain of a sinking ship.

    Since critics of Israel like proportionality so much, let’s be really, methodically proportional. Thousands of protestors turned out in London a couple of days ago in apparent solidarity with the plight of the people of Gaza. Some put the figure as high as 10,000. All this solidarity for a Gazan death toll of 500. You might think that Londoners just really, really care about Palestinians. But then you see the Palestinian bodycount in neighbouring Syria where 2,000 Palestinians have perished. Now, being all proportional about things, this should have resulted in a protest outside London’s Syrian embassy of around 40,000 people. But you don’t need me to tell you this protest never materialised.

    Mahmoud Abbas, the multimillionaire leader of the Palestinian Authority, accused Israel last week of engaging in genocide in Gaza. He is not alone. The leaders of Turkey, Venezuela and Bolivia suffer from a similar delusion, as do plenty of westerners who really ought to know better.

    Most reasonable people understand genocide as the systematic destruction of a people. The natural result of such an appalling crime against humanity is a severe decline in that ethnic group’s population. That’s just common sense, right? But Gaza’s population has increased from 600,000 in 1990 to 1.2 million in 2000 to 1.8 million today. If Israel is committing genocide then it is absolutely awful at it. Europe’s pre-WWII Jewish population was 9.5 million. After the Holocaust only 3.5 million Jews were left. That is genocide. If we use the Gaza genocide (sic) as a yardstick and are appropriately proportional about the matter Europe’s Jewish population should have increased at least a couple of million during Hitler’s reign.

    The loss of innocent life in Gaza is of course to be mourned, but 500 deaths is not a genocide or ethnic cleansing or anything like it, and people who bandy those terms around should be ashamed of themselves when the murder of half a million Tutsis in Rwanda is still fresh in the memory.

  9. neill July 21, 2014 at 8:51 pm #

    Some very good points Norma

  10. Norma wilson July 21, 2014 at 9:30 pm #

    A short version of Sorry, please forgive me!
    I came up to our office, typed a large apology to you, and did not save it.
    So this is the short version, for I am slightly inebriated?
    I was so mad tonight, like incredible hunk mad, about the synagogue.
    Mr James McVeigh sent a message to come to the Park Centre, in aid of the Palestinians.
    Very nice I am sure, but I am afraid it ignited my bad Irish temper so much so, I drove my car tonight with drink in me, although it was only one glass!
    I am sure Sinn Fein means well (ha ha and I don’t think) but they should show a bit more laissez faire,
    As for you Mr Collins, you never give up, the OO like IRA are not going away.
    I have wrote a letter off tonight, in my very best grammar to the Israeli Ambassador, telling him not all Irish people are if the same opinion as mr GA.
    Ah well, once again I am sorry for taking it out on you Jude, because deep deep down I do find you interesting, maybe you will let me buy you lunch by way of an apology.

    • Jude Collins July 22, 2014 at 8:05 am #

      Four courses, Norma – and that’s Dr Collins, btw…

  11. ben madigan July 21, 2014 at 10:07 pm #

    I posted a blog today (which I am not trying to push), about Erskine Childers, father of a president of ireland.

    He did not accept the 1922 Anglo-Irish Treaty and was killed/executed by those that did.

    I am enclosing a link that’s in the blog because i think it has much to teach NI

  12. Am Ghobsmacht July 22, 2014 at 3:36 am #

    Dr C

    I’m with Ruth on this one.

    Furthermore, I may not be the only one:

    The OO does indeed have dodgy origins and of course it brings controversy (much of it unnecessary imho) but it’s not all bad.

    Ruth’s book showed a different side to the OO, but, it is a side that exists.

    It is also a side that is way less newsworthy or headline grabbing than the Belfast circus:


    The ugly side of the OO is as evident as it is idiotic as it is intimidating and disruptive..

    But the nicer side of it can be very nice indeed.

    But they have a long long way to go on very many different topics.

    I think that the first thing they should do is either expel the Belfast districts from the OO or if that’s not possible then the rural lodges should start to secede.

    In the same way the IRA’s ceasefire was destabilising for unionism I wonder how destabilising would it be for some nationalist corners if the OO were to ‘wise the bap’ and get on top of things?