Cumann na Saoirse Náisiúnta

National Irish Freedom Committee

Hunger Strike Commemoration Report

Contributed by: Dominic Bruno.

On 7th of May 2011, the National Irish Freedom Committee held a successful Hunger Strike Commemoration at Rocky Sullivan’s new location in Brooklyn, NY. Republicans from NY and NJ gathered to pay their respects and honor the ten young men who died on Hunger Strike in 1981, struggling for political status. The well-attended event was chaired by Josh Jacobs

Brief biographies of each Hunger Striker were read by a series of speakers accompanied by video footage of 1981 protests, including a surprise appearance by Brigid Finn, who as a young girl participated in activism in support of the Hunger Strikers in 1981 and herself appeared in some of the historic footage. Supporting Brigid were her lovely family, who also participated, signifying the next generation of Republican activism. Noting the dramatic effect the Hunger Strikes had on Ireland’s exiled children in America, Ms. Finn stated, “Seeing the footage from the demos from back then, so very many wonderful people we’ve loved and have since passed! I was a 16 year old teenage during the hunger strike, myself, my mother, my 2 aunts and my cousin, who was also a teenager, went to every demonstration possible during those days...and when the hunger strikers died, we staged all night vigils in front of the British consulate in, the memories are all flooding back!! Back then there were thousands of protesters...all in support for the IPOW’s!”

A message from the Republican prisoners in Maghaberry was read by Pat Williams, tying the struggles of 1981 to the current struggle of Republican prisoners in Maghaberry and Portlaoise,

Bracelets supporting Republican prisoners in Maghaberry Gaol as well as T-Shirts commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Hunger Strike were available at the event and are available for mail order. All proceeds further the programs of the Republican movement in America.

Those unable to attend the event are advised to monitor for upcoming Hunger Strike Commemorations. Those unable to attend events, but wishing to contribute can do so by ordering merchandise or donating. Bracelets are $7 and shirts are $30 post and packing included. Inquiries to


Members of the NIFC Executive Committee extended a warm welcome to Dominick Bruno, the former NIFC IRPA Campaign Coordinator  who was in attendance. Dominic has lost none of his fervor for the cause of Irish Freedom that he so ably articulated during his previous involvement with the NIFC. He expressed a desire to help the NIFC again in any way he can. As a result of that offer he was tasked with writing the above report.

Dominic does not hesitate to voice his opposition to recent attempts to split the Republican Movement. In his own words he states that “The Republic is an entity which exists and which Republicans have taken upon themselves to uphold and re-establish. It is not an ideal to be aspired to or a topic for theoretical discussion. The ten brave men who died in such horror in 1981 were fighting the same struggle Republican prisoners now face. This is our shame, that many who claim the title Republican have forgotten the Republic, which has resulted in this dire situation of abuse our prisoners now face. Those who seek to divide us, seek to divide the Republic, consciously or unconsciously acting as agents of British rule in Ireland.”

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