The message of 1916 must be carried forward and acted upon
Republican Sinn Féin extends New Year greetings to its members and supporters, Republican POWs and to all engaged in the struggle for political, social and economic democracy. The past year witnessed a rising tide of resistance by the people of the 26 Counties against the imposition of water charges and the wider policy of economic austerity that has been inflicted upon our people by the Leinster House regime.
In the Six Counties Republican POWs continue their fight for political status while the sectarian Stormont regime lurches from one crisis to another. The so-called ‘Stormont House Agreement’ cobbled together before Christmas merely prepares the ground for the implementation of the British Tory-led Government’s neo-liberal economic policies of austerity and social cuts in the Six Counties while issues such as contentious Orange marches and the drafting and implementation of an Irish Language Act remain unresolved. The agreement merely underlines the fact that the Six Counties remain firmly under the control of the British Government with the Stormont Executive merely acting as colonial administrators.
Internationally imperialism continues to exert itself. While we welcome the release of the remaining members of the Cuban 5 by the US Government, we urge caution to those rushing to applaud the normalisation of relations between the US and Cuba. Any such normalisation carries with it a price tag set by the US designed to undo the social progress made under the Cuban revolution and to exert US hegemony over central and South America. In the Middle East the Israeli State is waging a war on the Palestinian people designed to break their will. In Gaza the full weight of the Israeli military machine has been brought to bear on the entire population. We reiterate our support for the Palestinian people in their struggle for a viable and sovereign nation state.
The coming year presents opportunities to further the goal of establishing a New Ireland. On both sides of the British imposed border the Irish people have shown an appetite for radical change. There are many false promises of achieving such change within the existing partitionist system, however we see in the case of the Provisionals that they speak out of both sides of their mouths. While promising change in the 26 Counties, in the Six-County state they have signed up to implementing the economic policies of the British Tory-led Government. The most recently proposed 26-County political party is simply a re-booting of the right-wing neo-liberal Progressive Democrats. Real transformation will not emerge from either Stormont or Leinster House. Those who promise reform will ultimately end up implementing the same policies they purport to oppose.
What is required is revolutionary political, social and economic change. Our policies ÉIRE NUA and SAOL NUA provide the framework for a New Ireland that would be equal to the principles and promise of the 1916 Proclamation. On March 14 we will be holding a public forum in Belfast to engage in discussion and debate on the merits of ÉIRE NUA as an alternative to both partitionist states. This will be the first of a series of such meetings we propose to hold throughout Ireland in order to promote ÉIRE NUA as the viable alternative to the failed politics and Leinster House.
The coming year, as part of the build-up to the centenary of the 1916 Rising, we will be marking the centenary of the famous oration, delivered by Pádraig Mac Piarais at the graveside of the great Fenian Diarmuid O’Donnabáin Rosa. As the only political organisation still committed to the undiluted gospel of revolutionary Irish Republicanism and the re-establishment of the All-Ireland Republic of Easter Week it is our duty to ensure that the message of 1916 is carried forward and acted upon. The forces of reaction and revisionism are attempting to rob us of our history, of its meaning and relevance in order to make our people compliant and subservient to the present day forces of political and economic imperialism. Instead we must reaffirm ownership of that history. The revolutionary generation of a century ago were men and women of vision. They showed us by their example what can be achieved by ordinary people when they unite together on the basis of principle and idealism.
The coming year will see a stepping up of the campaign of economic resistance and we urge people to come out and join that campaign. Ordinary people have it within themselves to decide their own destiny for this and future generations. The only effective means of bringing about revolutionary change is political and social activism. Republican Sinn Féin will be taking its place in the vanguard of that struggle.
Teach Dáithí Ó Conaill,
223 Sráid Pharnell,
BÁC 1, Éire.
Teil: 01-872 9747
Fax: 872 9757
Oifig Bhéal Feirste,
229 Bóthar na bhFál,
Teil: 9031 9004
International Relations Bureau:
Republican Sinn Féin, Stiftgasse 8, 1070 Vienna, Austria
Ranganna:[RSF News] Statements