Spanish anarchists, burning churches & George Orwell (1986)

Leave a comment

New Hibernia 1986click here to download

In October 1986, the above appeared in New Hibernia magazine.  Written by well known Cork anarchist Kevin Doyle, it was in reply to a letter from another Corkman, Matt J Doolan.

Doolan was a Blueshirt who had fought for Franco, with O’Duffy’s Irish Brigade, in the Spanish Civil War.  His letter can be read here.

Advertisements

New edition of MISFIT by Captain Jack White (co-founder of the Irish Citizen Army and Anarchist)

1 Comment

j

By Phil Meyler

In this centenary year it is worth remembering the enigmatic Captain Jack White (1879-1946), co-founder of the Irish Citizen Army during the Irish Transport Workers’ Union strike in 1913

Paradoxically, Jack White was born into a loyalist and middle-class family, the son of Field Marshal Sir George White, Governor of Gibraltar.  He was brought up mixing in the highest circles of the British establishment, hardly an obvious beginning for someone who was to become co-founder of the Irish Citizen Army.

White had a colourful and diverse life. After being decorated for his part in the Boer War he resigned his commission, travelled extensively in Bohemia, worked as a lumberjack in Canada and lived in a Tolstoyan Commune in England.

Misfit tells the story of White’s spiritual inner revolution as well as the story of his part in the Irish Revolution. Prior to being instrumental in the founding of the Irish Citizen Army White had involved himself with the opposition to Sir Edmund Carson’s anti-Home Rule Bill and travelled to London to speak alongside George Bernard Shaw on the subjection of Irish Nationalism. He then went on to organise the 1913 protest meeting in Ballymoney, Co Armagh, which was addressed by Sir Roger Casement. The protest proved so effective that he was then invited to Dublin to speak on Home Rule.

White arrived in Dublin at the height of the 1913 Lockout. He met with James Connolly and Jim Larkin, and under the influence of Connelly quickly identified himself with the southern workers’ cause.

White was outraged at how the Catholic Church aided and abetted the Dublin Employers during the Lockout and this outrage was galvanised when they stopped starving Irish children of the strikers going to Liverpool ‘heathen’ homes. It was then that White and Jim Larkin called for volunteers to set up a defence force.

Some ten thousand were there, and almost all volunteered.  They were directed to the Transport Union Hall. The strike had not actually come to a confrontation however until the infamous Butt Bridge baton charge. White was arrested as one of the leaders of the demonstration and fought all the way to the police station.

After the 1916 Rising White was again arrested and imprisoned for trying to organise a strike of the Welsh miners in support of James Connolly who was imprisoned in Kilmainham Jail under sentence of execution.

Jack White, throughout the 1920s, was active in a host of organisations including The Irish Workers League and The Workers Party of Ireland, moving between Dublin, London and Belfast and now clearly identified himself with left republican politics. A regular public speaker, he also wrote for many publications including An Phoblacht.

In 1936, White travelled to Spain to help fight Fascism. Impressed by the social revolution that was unfolding there, he was attracted to the Anarchist cause and wrote the short pamphlets “The Meaning of Anarchy” (1937) and “Anarchism –A Philosophy of Action” (1937.

Returning to London in 1937, he worked with ‘Spain and the World’, a pro-anarchist propaganda group. With Matt Kavanagh, the Irish Liverpudlian anarchist he worked on a survey of Irish Labour and Irish aspirations in relation to anarchism and did a study of a little known Cork Soviet. He was also working on a second volume of Misfit, a kind of Misfit 2. The articles and pamphlets, which survive, are now preserved in the Kate Sharpley Library (www.katesharpleylibrary.net).

After his death, his second wife either alone or in conjunction with the White family, unfortunately destroyed these notes. It may have been through neglect or expediency but it was more than likely driven by White’s criticism of the Catholic Church. Whatever the reason, it was a tragic loss.

White made a final and brief reappearance in public life during the 1945 General Election campaign. Proposing himself as a ‘Republican Socialist’ candidate for the Antrim constituency, he convened a meeting at the local Orange Hall in Broughshane to outline his views. But he never actually got his name on the ballot paper.

Six months later Jack White died from cancer in a Belfast nursing home. After a private ceremony, he was buried in the White family plot in the First Presbyterian Church in Broughshane. The only thing written on the tombstone is that he was the son of Field Marshal Sir George White; there is no commemorative record or plaque anywhere.

€14.00 (UK £12.00). plus €4 p&p

Email: orders from livewirepubs.@gmail.com

Or     www.amazon.co.uk

Paypal account:  livewirepubs@gmail.com

For details see www.livewirepublications.net

Cork marks 60th anniversary of Spanish Civil War (1997)

1 Comment

In 1997 a group of Cork socialists got together to put on events to mark the 60th anniversary of the Spanish Civil War and the contribution of the Irish who went over to assist the fight against fascism. The No Pasaran committee was broad based and included Kevin Doyle of the Workers Solidarity Movement, and two history lecturers, Donal O’Driscoil and Fintan Lane, from University College Cork who had written for the WSM’s magazine Red & Black Revolution.

This inclusive composition was reflected in their tributes to anti-fascist fighters from the Communist Party of Ireland, the IRA and the anarchist movement. Among those veterans who spoke at their events were Michael O’Riordan and Peter O’Connor, Irish volunteers in the 15th International Brigade, and Nora Harkin of the Spanish Aid Committee.

click here to download

The first No Pasaran bulletin has an interview with Diego Camacho of the CNT, a tribute to Charlie Donnelly, and a short piece about Spanish solidarity with the Liverpool dockers.


click here to download

The second one has an interview with Nora Harkin, notice of a workshop on ‘Collectives in the Spanish Civil War’ and of a showing of Ken Loach’s Land and Freedom.

Red And Black Revolution 7 – 2003

Leave a comment

click here to download

 

The magazine of the Workers Solidarity Movement, from 2003.  This issue’s contents, as described in the magazine:

Has the Black Block tactic reached the end of its usefulness? by Severino (Barricada Collective)
As class struggle anarchists who recognise the importance of a diversity of tactics in order to attack Capital, the State, and oppression in an effective manner, we see the black bloc as an important tool of struggle. Only one tool among many, but an important one nonetheless.

Where to Now? Anti-capitalist protest – global and local by Gregor Kerr
It is certainly hard to avoid the conclusion that anti-globalisation protests that avoid direct action will kill off the movement, or at least greatly reduce participation in it.

Repressing Abortion in Ireland by Mary Favier (Doctors For Choice)
The Republic of Ireland has one of the most draconian abortion laws in the world. At present abortion may only be performed where continuation of pregnancy poses a ‘real and substantial’ risk to a pregnant woman’s life – about 5 cases per year of 50,000 pregnancies.

Direct Action against the war in Ireland by Andrew Flood
In every country after February 15th the anti-war movement was thus faced with the question of what to do next. In Ireland almost all of the direct action protests were targeted on Shannon airport. More than half dozen successful actions took place, ranging from a large scale breach of the fence in October, to physical attacks on planes as the build up to war escalated.

The dismal failure of the IAWM leadership. A critique of the politics of Trotskyism by Dec McCarthy
After months of regularly attending the Irish Anti-War Movement’s marches and particularly after months of listening to the speeches of the leading lights of the IAWM my head is buzzing with cant and rhetoric and I have that dejected feeling you get when you know you have just lost a chance that won’t be coming around again for a long time.

Industrial Collectivisation during the Spanish Revolution by Deirdre Hogan
Within hours of the start of the Spanish revolution workers had seized control of 3000 enterprises. This included all public transportation services, shipping, electric and power companies, gas and water works, engineering and automobile assembly plants, mines, cement works, textile mills and paper factories, electrical and chemical concerns, glass bottle factories and perfumeries, food processing plants and breweries.

If you want to create Socialism – it must be based on Freedom by James O’Brien
Anarchists also seek to create communism. But for us freedom plays a central role, not only in the future society, but in how we try to get there. That is why, when we talk of communism, we talk of libertarian communism.

Open Borders: The case against immigration controls reviewed by Conor McLoughlin
Most mainstream groups eventually come down clearly in favour of immigration controls and deportations, though arguing for “generosity.” This book takes a position that so far has only won over a small but growing minority and argues for the immediate ending of all border controls.

The trouble with Islam by Andrew Flood
The September 11 attacks, the Afghan war that followed from it and the ongoing war in Israel/Palestine have once again raised the issue of Islam in the minds of many anarchists in Ireland and Britain. Not just because of the role Islam has in shaping those conflicts but also because militant Islam has become a far more noticeable presence on solidarity demonstrations.

Newer Entries