Joe McCann was IRA/OIRA OC in the Markets area of Belfast. He was famously photographed among burning buildings in Inglis’s bakery, during protests against the introduction on internment, crouched beneath a Starry Plough and holding an M1. (For more, see Battle Of The Markets, which features the same photograph.) For McCann’s death the following year (on April 15th, 1972) see Joe McCann. This new board replaces a tarp in the same location: see On The Brink Of Sectarian Disaster.
Cúchulainn stands dying; the raven on his shoulder will signal his death. “This memorial is dedicated to all the brave and gallant men and women of the Old IRA (Óglaigh na hÉireann) and Cumann na mBán who fought in all of the campaigns from the 1920s War of Independence onwards.”
The Irish tricolour with crossed rifles was the flag of the Irish Volunteers (Óglaigh na hÉireann), the splits in which gave rise all the subsequent IRAs.
For a roll of honour 1916-1966, including some profiles, see Treason Felony.
“Socialism is neither Protestant nor Catholic, Christian nor Freethinker, Buddhist, Mahometan, nor Jews [sic]. It is only human. We of the Socialist working class realise that as we suffer together we must work together that we may enjoy together. We reject the firebrand of capitalist warfare and offer you the olive leaf of brotherhood and justice to and for all.” From part 6 of Connolly’s Labour, Nationality And Religion in 1910. The mural is in Beechview Park, across the street from Áras Uí Chonghaile/James Connolly Visitor Centre.
“The true revolutionary is guided by a great feeling of love. It is impossible to think of a genuine revolutionary lacking this quality” – Che Guevara Lynch. The INLA’s Kevin Lynch died in the second hunger strike after 71 days. He is buried in Dungiven, where this memorial sits on the main road between Derry and Maghera.
“I ndíl [ndil] chuimhne ar Óglach Kevin Lynch a fuair bás ar stailc ocrais ar son saoirse, 1ú Lúnasa 1981 [who died on a hunger strike for freedom, 1st August 1981]. Erected by the Irish Republican Socialist Ex-Prisoners Memorial Committee.”
“‘It is not enough to be a revolutionary and an adherent of socialism or a Communist in general. You must be able at each particular moment to find the particular link in the chain which you must grasp with all your might in order to hold the whole chain and to prepare firmly for the transition to the next link; the order of the links, their form, the manner in which they are linked together, their difference from each other in the historical chain of events are not as simple and not as senseless as those in an ordinary chain made by a smith.’ – Vladimir Lenin. Workers’ Party West Belfast [Fb].” The quote is from Lenin’s The Immediate Tasks Of The Soviet Governmentin 1918.
This is a new INLA board to deceased volunteers Danny Loughran and Matt McLarnan, Paul (“Bonanza”) McCann, Martin McElkerney, and Gino Gallagher. The new addition here is Martin McElkerney, who died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in March last year (2019) (Guardian). Shots were fired over McElkerney’s coffin (tw). He was released under the terms of the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement after 12 years for his part in a booby-trap bombing of two British soldiers, one of whom died, in which two children also died.
The “Provisional” split from the IRA in early 1970 and the feud between the Provos and the “Official” IRA went on intermittently throughout the 70s. This board on Teach Oisín in the New Lodge commemorates three local OIRA members who were (or, were thought) killed in the feud (John) Mario Kelly was killed in Newington near his home in November 1975. Trever [Trevor] McNulty, education officer for the Republican Clubs and OIRA, was shot by the Provisionals in the entrance hall of Alexander House (later Teach Fhinn) in the New Lodge. 11 people, mostly OIRA, died in the feud in the two weeks from the tail end of October into November (CAIN). The third person shown is Patrick McGreevy from Carlisle Square, a youth member aged 15 or 16 (hence the Gal Gréine) who was shot from a passing car outside a café on Clifton Street. Originally his killing was thought to be part of the feud (which explains his inclusion here), but it is now generally accepted that he was shot by the UVF (Lost Lives).
The genealogy of the republican movement goes through the pike-men (silhouettes on the left and right) of 1798 and 1803 to the Easter Rising (the quote from James Connolly: “The cause of labour is the cause of Ireland and the cause of Ireland is the cause of labour”)
James Connolly was executed on May 12th, 1916. Both the (freshly painted) Connolly plaque shown above and the Martin Meehan mural on the adjacent wall paint the struggle of the republican prisoners and the Provisionals of the ‘Troubles’ as descendants of 1916’s Easter Rising. Several name-plaques have been added to (what is now officially titled) the ‘Republican Prisoners Memorial Wall’ compared to the number seen in September.
For close-ups of the door and sculptured rocks, see Father Time.
“Stand by the republic – Stormount [sic] has not delivered; no new jobs; wages & benefit cut; massive housing crisis; fight for jobs; resist all cuts; join the IRSP.” The board is from the Irish Republican Socialist Party (Fb); in the background is the repainted version of The Runner, including portraits of Manus Deery and Charles Love and a plaque to Love.