Brexit OK

The UK –including Northern Ireland – will leave the European Union on October 31st of this year (2019), perhaps resulting  in the return of a border between Northern Ireland and Éire. The departure has support from Unionists, including this graffitist in Oakdale Street, east Belfast.

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Can The Centre Hold?

In 2017 the New Lodge anti-internment bonfire was removed by the Housing Executive based on concerns that it was too close to buildings (BBC-NI) and in 2018 community negotiations arranged for it not to be built at all, in exchange for tickets to a Féile concert (Republican News | IRSP). But the bonfire is back this year, built directly on Queens Parade, and with it the anti-social behaviour that is thought by some (e.g. Alex Maskey) to be the real reason for the bonfire. “Such is the lawlessness,” reports the Irish News (one | two), that youths minding the fire have been seen powering an Xbox from a lamppost. Also, four nights of rioting (NewsLetter | iTV). In response to the growing attention, the graffiti above (“Our wood goes, this centre goes”) has appeared on a wall of the North Belfast Family Centre, along with graffiti threatening Sinn Féin councillor JJ Magee (see image below; Magee commented on the 2016 bonfire dispute in this Slugger article) and against any contractors who might be hired to remove the materials. As of 7 p.m. last night, the bonfire was still in place. If it has not been removed (by the Department Of Infrastructure) it will be lit tonight.

For the phrasing, see previously: Our Wood Goes Your Windows Go in Longlands.
For threats against contractors, see previously: Masked Republican Mercenaries.

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X06739 X06743 X06740 [X06741] [X06742] “JJ we know your address”

Make Your Mama Cry

“It’s no lie – drugs will make your mama cry!”Sisters Bridget and Geraldine McKay died within three weeks of each other, one from heroin and the other from prescription dugs (iTV | BelfastLiveBelTel). Between them, they leave nine children behind. The graffiti above is at the Colin transport hub, not far from Geraldine’s Suffolk Road home; Bridget lived in the New Lodge flats.

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None Of The Above

Writing by NOTA (None Of The Above) of TMN (The Most Nasty crew) for HTN19 in Kent Street, Belfast.
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Masked Republican Mercenaries

The Strategic Policy and Resources Committee of Belfast City Council decided on the 8th to remove two east Belfast bonfires built on council-owned land, carparks at the Avoniel leisure centre and in Ashdale Street, after staff arriving for work reported being threatened (BBC), perhaps by bonfire-builders reacting to the removal of tyres in Lismore Street (ITV) (see A Vote For The IRA). In response, builders of the Avoniel pyre removed its tyres, lowered its height, and moved it further away from buildings, but the Council affirmed its decision. A crowd of about 400 gathered to protect the site on Tuesday evening (BBC) and barricaded the site. The graffiti shown above appeared, calling contractors “masked republican mercenaries” and vowing that if they interfered they would “Attack loyalism at your own risk!!!” On Wednesday (1oth) the Council committee again affirmed its decision (Ailerain) but expressed concern over information of possible UVF involvement (Belfast Live) supplied in a letter from the PSNI (Mark Simpson).  (The mural is the background is a UDA one. See Northern Island.) The barricades were removed on Wednesday (as the image below shows). A contractor hired to remove the fire pulled out (BBC) on Wednesday evening. A “cultural celebration” was held throughout the night (BelTel).
The Ashdale Street fire was moved to a different location, near the Oval (BBC) and was set alight last night (BelTel).
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A Vote For The IRA

1,800 tyres were removed from the bonfire in Lismore Street this week by contractors in “armoured Land Rovers” (according to by Robert Girvin, East Belfast Cultural Collective, to the BBC; see this gallery of images at Belfast Live) working for Belfast City Council. PUP councillor John Kyle spoke out in favour of their removal (twitter | Belfast Live). Local residents have interpreted his comments as treasonous, with three pieces of graffiti painted in the area, one on Roseberry Road next to Young’s fish and chips (above), one on London Road (below), and at the bonfire site on Lismore Street (final image): “A vote for John Kyle is a vote for [the] IRA.” The graffiti has been criticised by unionists – PUP | DUP – though Jamie Bryson suggested that the Council was pushing unionists and the PSNI into conflict.

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Imagine There’s No Countries

No sooner had the pro-Trump message been blackened out (Your Wall, Your Border) than this graffiti appeared below the ‘Imagine’ mural in the neutral ground between the security gates on Northumberland Street: “Victory To Isreal [Israel]” with the Star of David.
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Fáilte Go Dtí Glengormley

Irish-language signage was in the news recently after Antrim & Newtownabbey council threatened an 85-year-old Randalstown pensioner with a fine of up to 2,500 pounds if she failed to remove a street sign erected by her granddaughter (Irish Central). So far, no action has been taken by the same council against the Glengormley graffitist who added Irish to the new ‘welcome’ sign on the bridge near the Bellevue Arms, though without translating the placename: “Fáilte go dtí (Gleann Ghormlaithe).” There is a matching sign at the other end of the area, on Sandyknowes roundabout.
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No Hedge Trees Or Shit

With less than a month to go until 11th night, bonfire builders are busy collecting materials for their pyres, but although they want people to “dump wood”, they don’t want to become dumps. Thanks to Dean Weir for this image of the site in the Brownstown estate (Portadown): “Dump wood – no hedge trees or shit.”
Our image of the mural in the background was also provided by Dean: see In Answer To The Echo Of Alarm.
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Dump Wood, No Shite

With less than a month to go until 11th night, bonfire builders are busy collecting materials for their pyres, but although they want people to “dump wood”, they don’t want to become dumps. “No shite” is on Lanark Way (west Belfast). For a more articulate list, see previously Stuff We Don’t Need.
The other three images are from the RYL [Roslyn?/Ravenhill? Young Loyalist] bonfire site in Lismore Street (east Belfast). where the “Irish News [is] not welcome” to write stories and take pictures of sites as the controversies surrounding them resurface each year, such as toxic fumes from tyres (see e.g. Tyre-Free Pyre and Tyred Of Your Culture) and state attempts to exchange funds for conditions on fires (see e.g. Culture Before Cash and Real Loyalists Will Never Be Bought).
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X06551 X06552 X06553 X06554 No fly tipping