The Blanket

The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent

Saor Eire

Bob Purdie • 17 January 2005

I would like to comment on Liam O Ruairc's piece on Saor Eire in the current Blanket.

I am named as one of the leading members of the International Marxist Group who had illusions in this organisation. As with many of my opinions in those days, that view was based on very little evidence or investigation. The murder of Peter Graham, who was a good friend, affected me deeply - although not quickly enough - and helped to give me a repugnance for conspiratorial militarist organisations. But although I am now, politically, very far from the Bob Purdie of those years, I am also an historian and I would like to correct some points in the article, on the basis of personal knowledge.

1. The "privileged relations" with the IMG amounted to the unsolicited Saor Eire manifesto, fraternal greetings to an IMG conference and the interview with two SE members, published in the Red Mole. This was set up by Peter Graham, who arranged for me to meet them at Marx's grave, in Highgate Cemetery. It was with two SE members and was republished by the Irish Times, with the false information that it had taken place in Dublin. I was very surprised to be told by them, that SE recognised the United Secretariat of the Fourth International as the leading body of world Trotskyism. My respondents were two of the members who signed the letter from Portlaoise and were, as I discovered later, on the "Trotskyist" wing of SE. I am now sure that they were not speaking on behalf of the organisation, but expressing their own opinions, which were heavily influenced by Peter Graham.

2. Peter Graham was a rank and file member of the IMG and therefore of an affilliated section of the United Secretariat, not a member of the Secretariat itself. At no time did he tell me that he was also, or had been, a member of SE.

3. Peter acted as an intermediary in arranging, through SE, for a false passport for a South African Trotskyist and arms training for a Sri Lankan.

3. I was present during Ernest Mandel's visit to Dublin in 1972. To the best of my knowledge he did not knowingly meet members of SE, except for any undeclared members who were also members of the Irish section of the Fourth International. He did, after reassurances about his security, meet members of the Official Republican Movement who asked for a discussion with him.

















Index: Current Articles + Latest News and Views + Book Reviews + Letters + Archives

The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent



All censorships exist to prevent any one from challenging current conceptions and existing institutions. All progress is initiated by challenging current conceptions, and executed by supplanting existing institutions. Consequently the first condition of progress is the removal of censorships.
- George Bernard Shaw

Index: Current Articles

17 January 2005

Other Articles From This Issue:

Fed Up With the Lies
Michael Benson

Dolours Price

Brian Mór

Strategically induced crises pay rich electoral dividends for Sinn Fein
Anthony McIntyre

Old Foes Discover New Ideas
David Adams

Celebrate 100 Years by Undoing Betrayals
Dr. John Coulter

Saor Eire
Bob Purdie

‘At No Costs to Prisons': Three Books on Beckett
Seaghán Ó Murchú

14 January 2005

Criminalising Republicanism
Anthony McIntyre

Brian Mór

Leading Human Rights Solicitor "Shut Down" by Law Society
Sean Mc Aughey

A Little Known Republican Military Group: Saor Eire
Liam O Ruairc

Too Bad The North's Future Depends On Tony Blair's Bravery
Paul A. Fitzsimmons

Free Tali Fahima - an anti occupation activist in the Israeli prisons
Iris Bar

Marie Wright
Anthony McIntyre



The Blanket

http://lark. phoblacht. net



Latest News & Views
Index: Current Articles
Book Reviews
The Blanket Magazine Winter 2002
Republican Voices

To contact the Blanket project with a comment, to contribute an article, or to make a donation, write to:

webmaster@phoblacht. net