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What you want to say – 5th May 2021 May 5, 2021

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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As always, following on Dr. X’s suggestion, it’s all yours, “announcements, general discussion, whatever you choose”, feel free.

May already… unbelievable how this year is both flying in and also dragging along.

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1. Gearóid Clár - May 5, 2021

Sinn Féin MLA Martina Anderson has admitted that a party recommendation for her to stand down was “body blow” as she confirmed she will not be seeking re-nomination for the next assembly elections.

The former republican prisoner was speaking after her party carried out a a wide-ranging review in Derry.

Her colleague Karen Mullan has also confirmed that she too will not be seeking her party’s nomination.

https://www.irishnews.com/news/northernirelandnews/2021/05/05/news/derry-sinn-fe-in-mlas-will-not-seek-assembly-election-nominations-2311122/

It’s probably no surprise after last week’s news about Sinn Féin in Derry. Still crazy to believe Martina held the role of Unionist Outreach Officer within the party.

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2. sonofstan - May 5, 2021

40 years since Bobby Sands died;

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WorldbyStorm - May 5, 2021

Forty years seems such a long time ago and yet, it really isn’t in some ways.

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6to5against - May 5, 2021

The bit I find shocking every time the Hunger Strikers are remembered is how young they were. At the time, as a teenager, I saw them as larger-than-life figures. Now I find it hard to see beyond the tragedy of it all.

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WorldbyStorm - May 5, 2021

Yeah, it was a dismal time and they were unbelievably young.

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yourcousin - May 6, 2021

I must admit as an American born after the strikes the idea that the oldest died at 29 seemed so old. I sit here now a decade past that point and reflect. To “like” a comment about the hunger strikes seems crude, but today was definitely a day of reflection.

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gypsybhoy69 - May 6, 2021

Not till yesterday did I notice that Bobby Sands death coincides with the birth of Karl Marx.

It’s also Cinco de Mayo and Revenge of the Fifth day and lots of other things.

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3. sonofstan - May 5, 2021

Fascinating snippet from a review of Niall Ó Dochartaigh’s Deniable Contact:

An embarrassed Patrick Mayhew, the secretary of state for Northern Ireland, announced that the British were only negotiating with the IRA because of McGuinness’s ‘conflict is over’ message. An indignant McGuinness denied responsibility; nobody in Ireland ‘with a titter of wit’, he said, would believe he had drafted or sent such a message. The Irish government weighed in, condemning the UK government’s hypocrisy. What prevented the derailment of the intergovernmental talks was the frank relationship between the British prime minister, John Major, and his Irish counterpart, Albert Reynolds. ‘It went all right – I chewed his bollocks off and he took a few lumps outa me,’ Reynolds announced casually after he and Major had emerged from an hour-long one-on-one meeting.

https://www.lrb.co.uk/the-paper/v43/n09/colin-kidd/with-a-titter-of-wit
(paywalled I think)

I’m not sure if, at the time, we would have credited Major and Reynolds as much.

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WorldbyStorm - May 5, 2021

Yeah I do think they were essential at that stage

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6to5against - May 5, 2021

I think Reynolds deserves real credit for the peace process. He took a very calm, measured approach from the beginning. How easy it would have been to mess the whole thing up at that stage was demonstrated very efficiently by John Bruton over the following few years.

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WorldbyStorm - May 5, 2021

He almost seemed to glory in it.

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4. Liberius - May 5, 2021
Liberius - May 5, 2021
Liberius - May 6, 2021

Germany on Thursday rejected a U.S. proposal to waive patent protection for COVID-19 vaccines, saying the greatest constraints on production were not intellectual property but increasing capacity and ensuring quality.

President Joe Biden on Wednesday voiced support for a waiver in a sharp reversal of the U.S. position, and his top trade negotiator, Katherine Tai, swiftly backed negotiations at the World Trade Organization.

The German government stood behind the goal of a worldwide supply of COVID-19 vaccines, a government spokeswoman said, adding however that the main factors in vaccine production are capacity and quality standards, and not patents.

“The protection of intellectual property is a source of innovation and must remain so in the future,” the spokeswoman said in a statement.

You’d have to admire that CDU/CSU commitment to the “innovation” of intellectual property rights, of course the fact that BioNTech and CureVac are German (and received truckloads of public monies) obviously has nothing to do with it…

https://www.reuters.com/business/healthcare-pharmaceuticals/germany-opposes-us-plan-waive-patents-covid-19-vaccines-2021-05-06/

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5. EWI - May 5, 2021

The far right continues to be emboldened in the US:

Sketchy AZ Audit Looks For Bamboo In Ballots In Nod To Bonkers Election Hijacking Claim

The recount of Maricopa County, Arizona’s 2.1 million ballots includes an analysis of whether the ballots have any bamboo fibers, an audit leader said Wednesday. The official said that the auditors were seeking to vet a wild claim that 40,000 counterfeit ballots were shipped in from Asia.

The explanation for the review by John Brakey — who is serving as an assistant liaison for the Arizona Senate Republican-ordered “audit” — confirms suspicions by outside election experts that the rules for the audit had been shaped with crazy conspiracy theories about the 2020 election in mind.

https://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/arizona-bamboo-ballots

Idea seems to be to gin up this administration’s hounding right-wing conspiracy theory.

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6. sonofstan - May 6, 2021

Just been to vote. No pen/ pencil in the polling booth. You have to ask for one, and then they dispose of it.

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WorldbyStorm - May 6, 2021

How does it work, do they then clean the pencils by some process? They can’t have an infinite number of them. Was there a lot of people out voting?

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sonofstan - May 6, 2021

Must do I guess.
No, one person before me and a very polite woman from the GP asking if she could take my electoral number. She didn’t even ask if I was voting Green.

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WorldbyStorm - May 6, 2021

Interesting, I wonder what turnout will be like

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banjoagbeanjoe - May 6, 2021

They can’t have an infinite number of them.

This is true. But they don’t need an infinite number. Just enough to cover all the voters in that polling station today. I’m trusting those public servants to have a good system in place. A big big box of little clean pencils. A big empty box. Once a pencil is used, throw it in the empty box. Leave the empty box out in the Scottish sun for a fortnight after polling day to kill off all viruses. Re-use.
Wonder do they be looking for innovative, cutting edge, consultancy advice from the private sector? Look no further, friends!

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sonofstan - May 6, 2021

” Leave the empty box out in the Scottish sun”

A) there are elections all over Britain today – do the returning officers have to bring all the pencils to Scotland.
B) ‘Scottish sun’

Liked by 2 people

7. banjoagbeanjoe - May 6, 2021

More on SF in Derry. A total clearout of the longstanding leadership in the city. Will be interesting to see how they rebuild and how well they do in coming elections there.
https://www.irishtimes.com/news/politics/sinn-f%C3%A9in-shake-up-in-derry-follows-review-by-wider-republican-family-1.4556489

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roddy - May 6, 2021

What Bradley doesnt say is that apart from a period of 2 years ,the SDLP were dominant in Derry since the early 1970s.If Derry is a shithole,the shit was amassed by the SDLP.

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banjoagbeanjoe - May 6, 2021

True. It was and is a bit of an outlier in not going comprehensively SF over the last couple of decades, unlike all other nationalist areas in the north?

Not easy for the SDLP or SF or anyone to undo decades of economic underdevelopment there or anywhere. The place needs a revolution maybe.

Liked by 1 person

roddy - May 6, 2021

It’s not easy to undo but “commentators” tend to focus on the party which was never really top dog and excuse decades of SDLP dominance.

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tomasoflatharta - May 11, 2021

Aoife Moore of the Irish Examiner reports on new developments in the Derry Sinn Féin story.

A public row erupts – Martina Anderson and her colleague Karen Mullan have declared they will not seek a nomination to be party candidates in the next Stormont Assembly elections, which are due in one year’s time.

“The news came as a “body blow” to Ms Anderson, she said, confirming the story last week.

Tonight, a Facebook post, penned by Ms Anderson’s sister, with 36 others tagged in the post, many of whom are relatives of the women, called on Sinn Féin to reverse the decision.

“For the Sinn Féin’s national leadership to carry out a review in Derry and to listen to the views of some people, and then to conclude that a lifelong republican who has, we believed, made a difference in Derry .. not to forget the fact that she’s someone who has given everything that is possible to give to the struggle other than her life, should stand down for problems that were not of her making, is a far cry from the ethos of republicanism,” the post reads.”

A Vincent Doherty update :

“Is there a split on the cards again? Word from Derry is that Martina Anderson has reconsidered her position about standing down as an MLA as requested by the internal party review. An online campaign organised by Sharon Moore, Martina’s sister, has already been launched, arguing that Martina has been treated very badly and that the national leadership has overstepped the mark. Clearly Mary Lou has staked her reputation and that of the leadership on the implementation of the findings of the review, and any sign of backtracking can only be seen as weakness. She simply cannot afford to back down. If Martina and her supporters do not back off then sanctions and expulsions seem inevitable. This is a very testing time for the national leadership, and I’m sure they played out the various scenarios. Watch this space.” https://www.irishexaminer.com/news/arid-40286048.html?fbclid=IwAR076nu9eFozLsAhD50Ylik5ZukFyIF_coT9_ZxbQNjbJSXf9HTwha2oO2A

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8. Tomboktu - May 6, 2021

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9. Tomboktu - May 6, 2021

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10. CL - May 8, 2021

” A hundred years ago, no one in Ireland wanted partition. Unionists would have preferred the entire island to remain with Britain. Nationalists, for their part, had been seeking a form of devolution in the return of the Irish parliament abolished in 1801. Why Unionists fought so hard against such a moderate measure has long been a matter of historical debate. Yet they did and were the first to threaten armed resistance….
Partition was, in effect, a recognition of sectarian division.
It drew a territorial line around a majority Catholic state in the South and a majority Protestant one in the North. Moreover, those religiously based identities had been fashioned from very hostile views of the other religion…..
To Catholics, Protestants were heretics, blow-ins, England’s tools, persecutors, not Irish at all….
Protestant sectarianism sees Catholics as something of a dangerous underclass….
Whereas for much of Northern Ireland’s history the key themes in Protestant imagery have been triumphalistic, there has been a notable increase in Protestant victim-lore since the Good Friday Agreement….

The difference today is that the Irish Republic is economically successful and more progressive on social issues than the North. References to its backwardness have disappeared from loyalist propaganda. This is another factor in Unionist nervousness….

The Orange Order still has the power to have swaths of public arteries officially closed to accommodate the “marching season”…
How many countries define their major public holiday season by sectarian anniversaries?…
Loyalists say this is part of their culture. And so it is. Yet it is also a reminder of a time when Protestants were in control, the glory days….

The message circulating in loyalist areas in April 2021 spoke to the fear that Protestants would be “outbred” by Catholics. The same fear was there in the refusal of Ulster Unionists to accept the whole of nine-county Ulster in their new post-1921 state….
for much of the past century nationalists and republicans seem to have been utterly incapable of grasping why Protestants feel as they do. Charles Townshend’s recent book The Partition cites an intriguing example of pre-partition Sinn Féin debate, when its future president Father Michael O’Flannagan did grasp the issue. “We claim the right to decide what is to be our nation,” he said, but “refuse them the same right.”

Despite the jingoistic flag waving, a sense of Protestant “Britishness” needs to be taken seriously and accommodated ”
Marianne Elliott.
https://www.ft.com/content/45f39267-0f17-46a0-9f26-12c93666a5a0

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_O%27Flanagan

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CL - May 8, 2021
11. LeftAtTheCross - May 11, 2021

For my sins I’m a lurker in the Just Transition Greens. A call went out earlier to publicise the government’s public consultation on the Climate Action Plan. I feel the need to post this here as my head almost exploded when I read it, just from the sheer banality of it and the focus on individual contributions within proscribed areas that seem to completely ignore the production side of the equation when it comes to harming the environment. I found it impossible to fill in the online survey here. It just didn’t have a section on ending capitalism as a baseline for every further action…If ever one needed a reminder about the inability of the Greens to even contemplate doing what’s required to save the planet this is it.

https://climateconversations.citizenspace.com/decc/climateactionplan2021/consultation/

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LeftAtTheCross - May 11, 2021

Tsk tsk, not “proscribed”. I think I mean “prescribed”.

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12. CL - May 11, 2021
CL - May 11, 2021

” What happened in Ballymurphy was state murder and for decades the British government have covered it up. Now the truth has been laid bare for all to see.
https://www.sinnfein.ie/contents/60786

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CL - May 11, 2021

” Alliance leader Naomi Long called on the UK Government to apologise for the actions of the Army at Ballymurphy.”
https://www.sundayworld.com/latest-news/calls-for-uk-government-to-apologise-as-northern-ireland-leaders-react-to-ballymurphy-inquest-findings-40414158.html

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CL - May 12, 2021

” If members of the First Battalion of the Parachute Regiment had been brought to book for the Ballymurphy killings in August 1971, it is unlikely they’d have perpetrated the Bloody Sunday killings in Derry in January 1972 and even less likely they would have killed Richie McKinney and Robert Johnston on the Shankill Road in September the same year.
The implicit message from the furtive silence of the top brass after Ballymurphy was ‘carry on regardless’ — and they did. One of the paratroopers involved in Ballymurphy was to be involved also in Bloody Sunday and then on the Shankill.
It would be hard to blame the man in question for coming to a conclusion that he could kill with impunity. In all the circumstances, what else was he supposed to believe? ” Eamonn McCann, Belfast Telegraph.

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CL - May 12, 2021

” Brigadier Frank Kitson was commander of 39 Airportable Brigade from September 1970 to April 1972. He had been decorated for his service during the Mau Mau uprising in Kenya and the Malayan Emergency, in which thousands of local people had been killed while Britain tried to hold on to its Empire.
Kitson was the author of the book Low-intensity Operations, which would become a British Army manual on counter-insurgency. It was Kitson’s methods and policy on tackling civil disobedience and sectarian violence that have been questioned following the Ballymurphy and Bloody Sunday massacres. ”
https://inews.co.uk/news/long-reads/ballymurphy-massacre-belfast-northern-ireland-troubles-bloody-sunday-193344

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CL - May 12, 2021

” UK PRIME MINISTER Boris Johnson has “apologised unreservedly on behalf of the UK Government” for the killings that took place in Ballymurphy in Belfast in 1971….

Speaking this evening, John Teggart, the son of one of the ten people killed, said Johnson’s apology was not a public apology, describing it as an “insult to the families” that it came during a conversation with others.

“The apology was to third parties, it wasn’t to the Ballymurphy families,” he told the BBC.

“It’s not a public apology … what kind of insult is it to families that he couldn’t have the conversation with ourselves. His office couldn’t come and speak to the families of what he was doing.

“That’s not acceptable to the families and never will be. This is not an apology to us.”
https://www.thejournal.ie/boris-johnson-ballymurphy-massacre-apology-5435600-May2021/

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pangurbán - May 13, 2021

the politcal,demand should now be that the units of the parachute regiment involved in this should suffer the fate of the franch paratroop units involved in the algerian coup

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/10th_Parachute_Division_(France)#Battle_of_the_Frontiers

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CL - May 13, 2021

” In November 2013, a BBC ‘Panorama’ investigation into British counterinsurgency in Northern Ireland in the early 1970s revealed that members of a special covert operations unit known as the Military Reaction Force (MRF) admitted to the murder of suspects and unarmed Catholic civilians. These admissions by the state or its agents confirm previous claims by critics dating back many decades. Such abuses were not merely low-level tactical excesses by undisciplined and racist troops but were institutional, systematic, and approved or covered up at the highest levels. Yet these conflicts were consistently interpreted almost universally by British academics as exemplifying the best practice of counterinsurgency. Even as the new revelations about atrocities were being made, new publications by British historians and political scientists were uncritically extolling the British ‘model’ or ‘way’ of counterinsurgency, asserting that the many positive lessons to be drawn, especially from Northern Ireland, should be applied in Iraq and Afghanistan….
Much of the myth-making about the success of the British way of counterinsurgency in Northern Ireland centres on the role played by one individual, Brigadier Frank Kitson….
One of the units under his command, 1 Para, was nicknamed ‘Kitson’s private army’ and had a reputation even in the British Army for being thuggish, but its role in the killing and wounding of a large number of civilians in Ballymurphy in July 1971 and Derry’s Bloody Sunday in January 1972 earned it even official British condemnation for being ‘reckless’ and ‘out of control’ ” – Professor James Hughes, LSE.
https://www.historyireland.com/volume-22/frank-kitson-northern-ireland-british-way-counterinsurgency/

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13. banjoagbeanjoe - May 11, 2021

SF’s troubles in Derry. They haven’t gone away you know.

https://www.derrydaily.net/2021/05/11/martina-andersons-family-hit-back-at-public-humiliation/

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14. Bagatelle's Unaverted Tiddlers - May 11, 2021

I see the UUP is on course to appoint Doug “The NI Protocol is a violation of the GFA and I oppose any form of ILA” Beattie as it’s future Lundy.

The PDs got a cleaner end fer chrissakes.

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15. CL - May 12, 2021

” re-energised nationalism has become the main vehicle for political, social, cultural, economic and ethnic beliefs…..
It is the zeitgeist – the spirit of the age – against which its opponents have struggled in vain to find a suitable antidote. ..
Communal identity is no longer rooted in class, in so far as it ever was, but is the product of the deepening divide between prospering metropolitan regions and those left behind; the geographical division partly coincides with growing confrontation between the educated and the uneducated and the young and the old…
The upsurge of populist nationalism across the globe can give the impression that it is an unstoppable political steamroller. Yet the success of toxic leaders has often stemmed from spectacular incompetence and rancorous division on the part of their opponents…..

The populist-nationalist trend is not irreversible but it will be difficult to achieve….
The pursuit of national liberty and self-determination is one of the great progressive forces in the world and should never be handed over tamely to right-wing demagogues as a vehicle for their toxic beliefs.”
https://www.counterpunch.org/2021/05/11/the-pursuit-of-national-liberty-should-not-be-handed-over-to-toxic-populists-and-demagogues/

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16. Tomboktu - May 12, 2021

Ah here. To get away from the news, I catch up with Sunday’s Open Book from BBC Radio 4, and are they covering but the latest biography of Barbara Pym.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m000vy1y

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