at the Mickey Devine commemoration March in Derry
in August IRSP members Eddie Mc Garrigle said,
us as republicans learn to treat each other
with respect, we should debate with each other
and engage each other in a genuine spirit of
comradeship. Whilst recognising the absolute
need to engage with the unionist tradition we
should be mindful that all of us need to actively
begin a process of healing the relationship
between the various republican traditions. We
should not let our egos or our pride stand in
our way. In my opinion we need to put out the
hand of friendship to each other; we need to
accept and welcome the diversity of opinion
within republicanism. It is time to heal and
to move on."
sentiments were strongly applauded by the large
crowd present including Martin McGuinness MP.
In the spirit of those sentiments the Ard-Comhairle
of the IRSP nominated a number of comrades to
attend a series of meeting with other Republicans.
Five such meeting took place over the months from
September until now. Present at those meetings
were Republicans from differing backgrounds including
the 32 Sovereignty Movement, Sinn Fein, former
members of Sinn Fein and the IRSP, the IRSP and
various non-aligned republicans. There were no
republicans there from the Republican Sinn Fein
those meetings it was made clear that the meetings
were not anti-Sinn Fein meetings but instead were
to explore issues that concerned many republicans
including the key issue of policing. At those
meetings Comrade Willie Gallagher IRSP reiterated
the IRSP position that there was no basis for
armed struggle and that the only way forward was
by political action. No arguments were advanced
against that position at the meetings.
the IRSP are both saddened and shocked by the
recent unsubstantiated comments from both Gerry
Adams and Martin McGuiness, and backed up by newspaper
columnist Jim Gibney that there was a plot to
kill leading Sinn Fein members. The only source
for such a plot comes from within Sinn Fein itself.
this an effort by the Sinn Fein leadership to
buy more time for their attempt to win over their
own members who have doubts about the whole issue
of policing? Rumours of plots to kill their leadership
seem designed to cement the membership in behind
that leadership. At the same time there is a mix
to somehow imply that "some members of the
INLA" as opposed to other members of the
INLA are involved in this spurious plot.
IRSP has said consistently and clearly for the
past years there is no basis for a resumption
of armed struggle at this time. That position
has been endorsed repeatedly by the INLA. All
of the Republican Socialist Movement is united
behind that position. However in accordance with
our policy as expressed by Eddie McGarrigle in
August we have engaged in discussions with all
other republicans, including Sinn Fein members
and will continue to so engage.
the vexed question of policing in nationalist
areas there is no serious public debate-taking
place. Where are the public meetings? Where is
the open debate in Sinn Fein? It is all held in-house.
Surely the major Nationalist Party in the North
has a duty to let the nationalist public know
the arguments for and against signing up to Policing?
grabbing news in an attempt to divert from their
own difficulties is an obvious New Labour tactic
well learned by Sinn Fein. It bears a striking
similarity to the dodgy dossiers on weapons of
mass destruction dreamt up by new Labours
spin-doctors. Going down that road does the Sinn
Fein leadership no credit.
should instead of spinning falsehoods and lies
about other republicans begin a series of public
meetings within nationalist areas to genuinely
explore what the wider nationalist working class
really think on the whole issue of policing. What
are they afraid of? The voice of the people?