The Blanket

The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent

The Central Issue is Justice

Catherine McCartney • 4 April 2005

Last weekend marked the eighth week since the brutal murder of my brother Robert. It also marked the 89th commemoration of the 1916 Easter Rising, a watershed in Irish history which resulted in the birth of modern republicanism. Why do I link these two events? Because one was a 'blood sacrifice' for republicanism, the other a 'bloodbath' by republicans.

The IRA members who callously took Robert's life did not do so to further the republican cause, nor did they do it because Robert had in some way threatened that cause. No. They did it simply because they believe that membership of the IRA gives them a license to murder any innocent Catholic who refuses to bow to their bullyboy tactics and egos. These actions are a far cry from the republican ideals for which many fought and died.

When this family spoke to members of the Army Council they told us that killing another human being was a very hard thing to do. Not so for those IRA men who called for a knife when the decision was made that Robert and Brendan had to die. They felt no pangs of conscience as they stabbed and beat my brother for no cause.

Over the past two months my family have had injustice after injustice heaped upon us. Had those who carried out Robert's murder belonged to any section of the British establishment, then we would have the unwavering support of Sinn Fein and every republican and nationalist in the north of Ireland. Our campaign for justice would be vocalized by every political representative from every nationalist party, particularly Sinn Fein, and the people would be left in no doubt that the issue was one of justice and justice only.

Why is this not happening even though both the IRA and Sinn Fein agree that Robert's murder was a crime, that those involved did not 'act like republicans or on behalf of republicans,' and that they support our position that these murderers should face justice in the court? Simply because what took place on the night of the 30th January and subsequent days was Murder, Collusion and Cover-up - crimes usually associated with British forces now being carried out by republicans.

To date republican representatives have responded to Robert's murder in the same fashion as British forces; smears, demonisation and attacks, anything but the truth. The question every republican and nationalist should be asking themselves is not why this family is seeking justice, but why this family is being denied justice?

Despite Gerry Adam's and the IRA's statements that no-one should impede the investigation into Robert's murder, no-one has yet came forward with evidence. Maybe not so strange when you consider the make-up of the clientele of the bar, Sinn Fein members and their associates and IRA members. Have any of these people been expelled from the party or organization for defying the leadership? Why not?

I have read with interest the response from some so-called republicans to my family's call for justice. Some have been amusing, others downright insulting, but the most disturbing of all have come from Sinn Fein supporters and republicans, who seem to fail to grasp the central issue of justice. This appears to me to be a sinister shift in the thinking of republicans in that justice has become something that only those who have been victims of British injustice are entitled to.

Robin Livingstone (Andersontown News, 26th March 2005) describes Robert as "only one man", asking the question should his death hold up the peace process? It seems strange to me as a republican that, firstly you have to die in numbers before you are important (many campaigns for justice in the north of Ireland are based on the death of individuals) and, secondly how can peace and injustice co-exist? But I will not waste too much space on his thoughts.

We also hear from other Sinn Fein candidates that the IRA has done enough. Could they explain what exactly the IRA has done except write a few statements? Maybe a few statements are the value so-called republicans now place on the lives of their fellow nationalists.

In reference to the expulsions, it is now clear to the people in Short Strand that the expulsion of one senior Republican was a farce.

With regards to those who covered up and colluded with others to protect the murderers, what has the IRA done?

What has Sinn Fein done? Again we have a few strong statements, suspensions of members allegedly involved and nothing else.

The discrepancies between what the leadership/s of both organisations are saying and what is actually happening on the ground where it really matters is stark.

On the 89th anniversary of the Easter Rising, and the eighth week since Robert's murder, I was drawn on the fact that Padraig Pearse surrendered because he could no longer suffer the death of innocent civilians for the cause.

I wonder what Pearse would have made of the murder of Robert on the 30th January (ironically also the anniversary of Bloody Sunday). Robert's slaughter was not a 'blood sacrifice' for the Irish people but a 'bloodbath' to satisfy the self-gratifying psychopathic egos of individual IRA volunteers.






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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.
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Index: Current Articles

6 April 2005

Other Articles From This Issue:

Criminality and Public Relations
Eamon Sweeney

Truth Better than Spin
Mick Hall

The Central Issue is Justice
Catherine McCartney

Not Out of Nationalist Woods Yet
David Adams

South Down Election Play
John Coulter

Are We on the Verge of a New Political Ice Age?
Anthony McIntyre

28 March 2005

The Writing's Off the Wall!
Catherine McGlinchey

Ireland: Republican Movement faces disintegration
Paul Mallon

The IRA is Morphing into the 'Rafia'
Anthony McIntyre

Truth and Justice!
Sheila Holden

Greet the Lion to Kill the Cat
Àine Fox

Concerned Republican
N. Corey

Six Against the Rock
Anthony McIntyre

Our Patriot Dead Are Turning in their Graves
Margaret Quinn

Easter Oration 2005
32 CSM

Easter Statement from the Leadership of the Republican Movement 2005

RSF Vice President Calls On Provisionals To Disband
Des Dalton, RSF

Easter Statement from the Leadership of the Irish Republican Socialist Movement
Andy Gallagher, IRSP

Easter Statement from the Irish National Liberation Army Prisoners of War

Caribbean Sinn Fein Easter Message
Jimmy Sands



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