Easter Sunday Commemoration 2013

Woodlawn Cemetery – Members of Cumann na Saoirse Náisiúnta (CnSN) joined the family of famed Fenian great, Joe Stynes at his grave to honor the sacrifices of 1916.  CnSN President Liam Ó Murchú and Jane Enright welcomed the gathering and introduced the Stynes family.  There was a brief moment of contemplation of the efforts of this Republican icon as the family placed the wreath upon the grave.  Michael Coisdealbhach then recited the Proclamation as Gaeilge.  Following the Proclamation, the Easter Message from Cumann na Saoirse Náisiúnta was read by Dominick Bruno.  The message from the Republican Movement in Ireland was read by Pat Williams. CnSN President Liam Ó Murchú then recited Pearse’s oration at the grave of O' Donovan Rossa, providing historical context.  Joe Stynes's daughter, Kathleen Stynes then read Brian Mór Ó Baoighill's succinct thesis, “The Fenian Faith” and inspired the crowd recounting her father's concern for the people of Ireland.

Following the formal ceremony, a small group headed by Liam Ó March proceeded to the grave of Thomas Kelly, co-founder of the Fenian Brotherhood.  We briefly heard of his exploits in the U.S. Civil War, his actions as a military advisor to the Fenian Brotherhood, and the Manchester Martyrs.

We regrouped at the Heritage for the Countdown to 2016 portion of CnSN's Easter program, emceed by Maggie Trainor. 

There was a minute’s silence in memory of the fallen great, followed by Brigid Brannigan Farrell reciting the Proclamation of the Irish Republic in English.  Mrs. Farrell has given lifelong service to the cause of Irish Republican prisoners.  She was amongst the first on the streets of New York demanding justice, and will be honored as this year's Cabhair nominee from the United States.  Seosamh Ó Flatharta and  Michael Ó Coisdealbhach contributed a brief piece highlighting the living nature of the All-Ireland Republic as an existing identity born on Easter 1916, and how faith in that Republic was the driving force which justified and motivated the women and men of 1916 onwards to take up arms against the occupier. 

Pat Devlin then read biographies of the executed Proclamation signatories, while Daniel Sullivan read the biography of Seán MacDiarmada.  Gerry Enright paid tribute to the executed Leaders of 1916.  Veteran Republican activist Vic Sackett read the Easter Message from the Republican prisoners in Maghaberry prison.  Maighréad ní Dhubhda read the John McBride biography.  The event closed with Joan Messina reciting Yeats' poem “Easter, 1916” followed by a surprise song by Mary Courtney as she lead us all in singing “A Nation Once Again”.

As the event was closing, an attendee brought the following event to our attention: http://www.irishfaminetribunal.com/

Thomas Kelly on Fenian Graves:

Contributor: Dominick Bruno

Click here for Easter Commemoration video        Click here for Countdown to 2016 video

NIFC Easter Messge

To our friends, comrades, and supporters gathered worldwide to commemorate the 97th anniversary of the great Easter Rising, we extend our greetings and solidarity.  We thank all those returning from years past, and welcome those who have joined us more recently.  This year we mark the Centennial Anniversary of the 1913 Lockout as part of our “Countdown to 2016” program.

One hundred years ago, the world saw the workers of Dublin move to assert their rights in the face of a vicious owner lockout.  The severity with which the workers were assaulted did much to convince the Irish people of the need for a sovereign Republic of All Ireland that promised opportunity and hope for all.  It also demonstrated that anyone challenging the status quo in Ireland would be crushed with violence if they had no defense. Consequently, when the Republic was proclaimed three years later in 1916, there were already military units waiting to pledge their allegiance to the fledgling nation.  Through vicious repression and treachery, these courageous women, children, and men defended the Republic and the All-Ireland Dáil Éireann against the British occupiers and their “Irish” cohorts.  Their struggle was not for some future ideal republic, but for the living 32 county Republic of 1916.

Today, their descendants continue the same struggle in communities and prisons throughout Ireland.  Once again, the British and Dublin establishments seek to deny the sovereignty proclaimed in 1916 and ratified by the will of all the Irish people in the All-Ireland Dáil, attempting to criminalize those fighting under its authority.  Now, as in the past, they will fail in this endeavor.  We continue to express our support for the Republican prisoners in Maghaberry and elsewhere who, together with their families, have sacrificed so much for our Republic.  Neither they, nor their righteous actions in defense of the Republic, will be forgotten. We repeat our demand for the occupational authorities to abandon their policy of attempted criminalization of the legitimate Irish Republic, and assert the prisoners' rights under the Geneva Conventions regarding the treatment of prisoners of war.  We ask each person to support Cabhair and the annual International Day of Action for Republican Prisoners until this is achieved.

This, together with the return of internment as faced by Martin Corey, Marian Price, and others reveals an increasing return to the use of political policing.  Indeed, now the political harassment has spread from inside the prisons to the supporters of the prisoners as well.  The authorities will stop at nothing to maintain their corrupt regimes.  We will expose, condemn, and - with the help of the freedom loving people of the world - bring to an end this inhumanity and repression.  Let there be no mistake – internment without trial is a crime against anyone who values freedom, regardless of ideology or location, and must be eradicated.

The Dublin and British administrations are forced to such shameful tactics to prop up a failed peace “process” which has brought much process and very little peace.  They must support these doomed-to-fail schemes to guarantee their own privilege and existence.  The Éire Nua  federal program would provide a transparent and local framework that would eliminate such abuses of power, and includes a draft Charter of Rights that provides protection for freedom of belief.

The dramatic increase in economic and political refugees from Ireland, sanitized in polite discourse as “emigrants”, as well as sectarian violence in Ireland itself, are sure signs that change has long been needed in Erin.  Sectarianism is generated and manipulated to keep the people divided.  Similarly unemployment and political repression are used to vent disaffected portions of society through emigration.  We will continue to seek ways to help Irish economic and political refugees here in America, as we continue to struggle to eliminate their reasons for leaving.

As the Nation's soul shudders, the current administrations profit through the importation of cheap foreign labor, corruption, and the sale of Ireland's natural resources to the highest bidder.  The Irish people are commended for the stands they have taken – from the continuing struggle at Rossport to the Galway Bay salmon fishers – and we continue to offer our support and solidarity.

Jim Larkin said, “The best thanks we could offer those who went before and raised the Irish working class from their knees was to press forward with determination and enthusiasm towards the ultimate goal of their efforts, a Co-operative Commonwealth for Ireland.”  We, too, must press forward with determination and enthusiasm to defend the Republic and implement Éire Nua, achieving the dreams and aspirations of those who came before us.

An phoblacht abu!  Long live the All-Ireland Republic!     

Republican Movement Easter Statement

On the occasion of the 97th anniversary of the 1916 Rising the Leadership of the Republican Movement sends greetings to all assembled at Irish patriot graves and at monuments to the memory of our Republican dead.

Once again we issue a reminder that the centenary of that momentous Easter Week is a bare three years away and we ask who has the credentials to honor that 100th commemoration? Surely not those who accept the British and Unionist Veto on the future of Ireland or those who collaborate with English rule in our country. Their political surrender to imperialism is a contradiction of the 1916 Proclamation and all that it stands for. Preparations for 2016 need to continue.

We accept the statement of the Continuity IRA that they abhor drug-dealing and gangsterism and that they have nothing to do with either. We acknowledge their declaration that they remain intact and that their objective is to drive out the British Occupation Forces from the Six Counties just as they were evicted from the 26 Counties by an earlier generation. In short that aim is to complete the work of 1916.

We respond to and reject the untrue claim made without contradiction on RTÉ radio recently that there were “no British soldiers in the North”. The insinuation is that English rule no longer obtains there. The reality is otherwise. And it is accepted widely that the politically biased policing of the so-called PSNI is nothing but a return to that of the pre-1968 RUC simply dressed up with new badges on their headgear.

We note that the title of Republican Sinn Féin has been misappropriated from it by a tiny splinter group in Limerick. Politicians and a hostile media have given credence to this action by highlighting its misdeeds and then placing the blame on the true Republican Movement. We take advantage of this occasion to clear the air and assert once more Republican Sinn Féin’s integrity and good name.

Similarly, even the name of our country, Ireland, is denied in official circles. The 26 Counties are called “Ireland”, the Six Counties “Northern Ireland” and out native land is dubbed “the island”, thus denying the historic entity which has called forth such service and sacrifice down the years. In this way they seek to deny the very concept of Ireland as our people have known it. They would have us consent to partition and British rule for all time. We say “Never”.

Next year, 2014, will see local elections again in the 26 Counties. Republicans need to make ready and take advantage of openings in this regard. With the abolition of town councils as part of the present administration’s policy of centralization, elections to Údarás na Gaeltachta were likewise terminated. Gaeltacht self-government was an integral part of our ÉIRE NUA proposals of 1971 making for much stronger local bodies in Irish-speaking areas. Republican Sinn Féin welcomed the limited devolution provided, however, and contested all elections to the Údarás. We see its abolition as a step backwards and deplore its passing.

Meanwhile, the new imperialism through a combination of the Euro currency and lack of regulation of banks has brought a seemingly endless austerity to the ordinary people. The rich get richer and the poor poorer. This process must be resisted at all costs.

All the while Republican prisoners in Maghaberry, Co Antrim endure as they seek an end to controlled movement and to strip-searching. Following four months of protest, in August 2010 an agreement was reached. It was reneged on by the prison and resulted in another 15 months of a no-wash protest. Nonetheless pressure has continued on the prisoners and the official prisoner ombudsman has admitted publicly that the Republican wing in Maghaberry is the only drug-free wing in the prison. Internment has been reintroduced as Martin Corey of Lurgan, who had served 19 years and was released, was brought back and has been held again for three years without trial. He is still in Maghaberry jail.

At these Easter commemoration ceremonies we are mindful of the prisoners’ struggle and salute their sacrifice. An Phoblacht Abú! Long live the Irish Republic!

-- Issued by the Leadership of the Republican Movement, Easter 2013

Woodlawn Cemetery Photos












Heritage Restaurant  -- Countdown to 2016 Photos














back to index page