.1 Ten Ye,a,rs, of Solidarity Work I. lrelend and thle National Ouestion

• Fourth hternatlonal Theses on lreland (1944)

• The lrish War::, 11968·~198,3



PN'fla.CS " f " iIo if iii .. If ....... Ii III '11 II • II II if • iI .1 , Ii ....... I !li .. ill 1

Ireland; the NationaI Question ad the lDfama.tioul ,Soeidism. + ••• , •••••• ~ •• , •• ., ••• '. 5

Ten Y;eanJ of Solidarity Work ... tile 'Troops

&:!otB.r1ans FJlI t.be Vaouu m, - the lrts,n

'Freedom. Mo'Vi! meDit. ~ 111 iI " " ,i .. ji ii! "', " II ii1 .. II Ii ..... iI !p .. !II II 41

(1944) .... " III! II .. r .. II ill II ,Ii !!II • ,. "',, II ...... II! 'tI' !i III III iii • II' 'I!!! III! "',,, !! ill 61

Too ltiJ:I,h War (196:8 ~ 19B3) •• ' u .59,

~ •• r

Printed and PubI1sbed by Workers, P,ower, BeM Box: 7750. BeM. LOlOdon , WC1N 3XX



In the wake of tile d'eie lit of tilie 19 B 0 ;a 1 hl1.llge r strikes in the 6b:: C ounU es the natIonal struggle in Ireland baa I at the time, ,of wrltlng, profoundly,e!bood. The IRA/INLA OIUl stin strike symbolic targets in Britain {eg~ t\1il1 Household Cav.I1l111'Y) OF units can stut prove a match fol' the British troops on the streets of No rtbs rn I re hind ~ a e i t1e,61, Yet~ onCEiI agai I'I, the ltIllS StUI are off the s treats •

Two y,ears agot the Irisb. hunger atri.kee had set the North ablase with mas,s al!tioll- denuUlstraUons,t stt1kee- such as had not b&8n seen for s,everal yea.rs. The harotsm of tbe H-Block p,risoners' confrontation with the murderous Thatcher (lOVS'NI mont ratsed not only the North. In· the Twenty-Six Coontiea popular ind~nati.on reaobed mass proportions agatn, E van in Brltall.nt deap unease was experienced by the pubUcists of&he official lilainfol'm.ation ~n Ireland. Within the labour movement 8 d~'in:i.te ques,tioning of the Brif.is,h role in NOl"therli; Ireland. beg,ant a role whioh the LHbourParty bad eelluded w:lith ever sln.ce PartiUon. The subterranean mmblings, were even to be heard in the septembel' 1981 L.$ooul" Party Conference" at whi.c,h IrelMd was bItterly debated for the

fi ra t tlme in years ~

The defeat CIof the hmger strikes and the g,ubsldlng of the ~IDa.SB st.ruggtea wbicb Il:ooompanied them has InevUably affected the 90~lda'rity B'truggle In Britain.

The agitatiQ'Il tbe.t r'8'ached significant pt'oporUons ar.ound the time of thehung&l" strIkes has faded away+ New anti-NattonaUstmellSUl"oBI t ne:w cOllces,slons to the Orange bigots truty re'Vive the attention of the laoour movemen,t but it 'Is not file duty of revolutionaries to awatt fspontllfi8oua' interest' but, rat&er.to prepare for deotstve momenta by asteady stream. of well-ex:plai.nad Rg1tation and pro pagan da in. the, trade un ions and the Laoour Party.

Tlda ts our purpose in productng this pamphlet. Thematarial nas been assembled with the ahu of laying the political basis for eoUdtlt"'!tywo1"k In Bdwin"

A detailed history of national oppn8sion in Ireland is not ourrnatn oonoern, hare t but ma te rial on this Is pl'IBsente d in the firs t dQCU mane and in the a lIC'bi vB pie oe from 194: ot:. We assume tha.t most peopte who re ad this w m ac ee pt thR.t national oppression exists. This pamphlet a.lms, to show what conclusions

flow, or should flow! from. 'tb1a nla.1ifJlat,on.

- 2 -

The' maj [I r pi ece he re , r r -r.eland! the Natkmq_l Quae tien and the Inte maU anal Soc tal-.I sts (IS) ~ I W M W l'itten in the' all m m(}l" of 197-4 by too Laft Faoti on of IS. This, fBlotten WI'l9 to gather topthar tha tniUal cadre that formed Worl ers Pt~wer !lifter the Left F,lictionLB expulsion in 1975. The faHure of the ce.ntrlBt lett (to particular

IS, now the SootnllBt WC1rirera Party (sWP» aft9r the Aldefshot borobitn;gs was

the initial Inspiratlon be bind the 'formation. of th.e Le,ft Faetlen. This factional platform t&k89 the opportuuity to llItate some fundamental truths of ~ilarxiam on the Nat:iomLl QuE!Saon~ in an at~empt to educate the rank a.nd fllfl or IS. They rebt.in their va.!tdity today. A foreword baa been added to place the document in its: context, Footnotes have been n.dd.::d, !:rut othorwtse only minor !!Ityliatic cl'mngeEi

'ba ve been DUUie.

'TtllI'ti Years: of SoUdarity Wor!r,:'surveys tile pitfalls of oppnrtuntam tHat have l:J;e.devmed Irish liJoUdarUy work: between 19'13 and 1983. 7'he errersef the Left have been due eithe-r to' IteU~ accommodation to the ~Uttcs of tbe Troops Out Move meM (T OM), (I r a one ~8 idea re Be t:!. on to 1 ts failu res. Few ~ if a 'Dy ~ have drawn co rre c:t tss B o.na of this ex per 1ence " So rn 0 I like Gem! Be til. f in a rec.ent trtf'I.'I.u:!tt'tial book of LB.bou~Party poUcy 9.nd Ireland. refuse to CFitlcally ell;;amtl]1e the la!lt~en years. He .brlefl~· alludes to the failure of soUdadty work tbu.a:

r'Tbe inability of TOM to bund the 'DUIBB eatapalgu' It hoped for WWi dU:e to the hostile environment it had to work tnt! ~ilTr.oublesome Buatnees" G, nell. Pluta 1982)

B!IiiIUdhllg ,lUi anU-imperiBliet soUdArlly movement, cobfronUng cbauvtntsm in toe BriUs' workin.g C~9.S:!ll1 will alweys 'involve wo1'k:in,1 in 8 'hoEJ,tile 9'll.vIrunment"

If dene se.rh:ru.9iy. Tbte glfb !l1ppra:l.sa.l turns the truth. on Ita head. The failu.res of the laat 10 years have been primarily ~rub)ectN~ oF:le8~ the feilure of poUtteal leadership 00 f01"Mularo prtnetples ~ stl'9.tagy and taottes - f'l'en Yeare of SOUdarity Work' puts the record .atrafght and lays fhe baats 1 )1' principled

alte mati V€l.B '.

We tncludethe a.rcDtve piece, net beeauae we !"'8'ree ~th eV<e!'ything hi It, hut bec'a~se it tsnel widely available, and has not (to out' knowledge) baen l'eprfnted'. The auth.ot'shlp 19 unknown" but the ulr~~h Tmt!llkyists.'t reeponatble, working In rela;Uve ~901I1tio:n, dU1."ing war UnLet nave pIndu.ced s:n ead)r a.ttempt 81 eXplaining the National Question in Iflcland. urJ1ng Trntskr's theory of permanent J['Elvolution a·s a gl.Hde. .As £&.1' !IS we are aware, fhe theBHs Wf3o!'e not Mficlally adopted by the Fou.rth. 1ll£ern Bt tiona] dm l' the \'\riEl l' •

The pamphlet ta highly pole tnteal, Mel de!Hberately so. A pr1Mipled alternative to TOM and Us BUCCeSi!llOl'l3I wUl only be forged out of stl'Uf1;gle o'Vtll" tdeas, in

fhe first inemn(le, yet Worker's PowaT does ]l().t regard pole mtealorre to be sWf1cient. Points of common activny can and mqst be found. The Len 'Fllotion~rged IS to help lannuh Troops Out work. In the Labour movement. Workers Power bas r6spond,,[! to l!V3nts such sa the hmIger st.rikes by throwing tM orgMlsBUon into taking up thea.nt1-lmper'~a.l!Bt cause wtthtn the' wO.r'king ClUB. At the moment~ indapendfmtwork on Ireland, tofnmgwlth others where poaatble, ts tim gulde 00 our a.ct~vUy. Yets as a f~ghUng propa.ganda gi""OUP. and given the political confuaioR Ol'l tbs Lent UlJa pamphlet ta ona of tm biggest con.trlbutlo:ns

"'~ can currently make in Britain to the eauae ·of Irish fresdmn. If the poUties contained in thts pamphlet h91pto re-orient anU-tmpariaUat solidarity work in Brltatnt than thB herete ffgh~t'9 fot' Il"lah :freedom will rOl" cncehava boon well served by their brotbel'"S Bud sbters on too ma.inland4

- 3 -

Janus..ry US3

WOllKE as P O'WE n has a frate mal 0 rganiea...tion in Ireland. the IRISH WORKEUS aH.oUP.

The IWG produce a :regUl 9.r jou rnru., 'ICIM S Struggl,e rr ~ which deala wifll the key lealJes of 'World poUUC91 and m..aJor questions feEling thf! !rlsh working elass.

To obtain the latest ts'B118t send 75p (brei p & p) to~ WorkersPoW8T't SCM Box. 77501 BCM. London, WCIN 3XX~

Or write d!rectljtw: J. Larkin, 12 Lang rtaha pie.oe~ Dublin 1 t ImlW1d.

- 5 ~,




The origins of the Workers Power Group Ue !n the formation and struggle of the Laft Faction ~f the InternationalSaciaHsm (IS) {now the·Sac'ii.Ritst Work.ers PI,rty). The main dceument in this eolleetton .~ nlrela.nd. the National Question and 1. So<'1 W08 produced in the summeeof 1974. and deals with the ~ssuefll whteh bro:ught the Le.ft Faction, Into ,a:xtstenoe two ycanea1'l1er.

Nine y,~a:rs em. the document has lost none of ita re levance ~ It dees riot pretend to he 6xhaUB t1 ve ~ yet c anfrOI]] Ung the pvoble sn of an IS me mbe rB hip which. WaJ woefully and del:lberat'lily unde1'8du.cnted by its na,tlonal1eadel"shlp on the Irish qu.e9tion~ the document waaa. [!:elilberateat.tempt to re-state Bomeb9Jiltc Mal'x.iet anllysis of Irish hls,tory ~ It tries to sketch the a:ttitudes nf Marx.~ .Eng·elst Lenin ~nd T rom ky to nationR:l1st strugg tea, Above all t U. expOOGS the distance that

lay between that tradiU~ an.d the prBlctica.lrecord of the IS. In doing 90 U necessarily conf';ronts ehe Ulm.em.bership with th.e real ebaraoter of Republicanism., the 1'0 La of the PrMastantworking class. It oonfronts the 18 lea,darsMp ~B a.ttem.ptB to charge the IRA with I![ndividual OOr.rods rot •• In e:tripping awaytn.a idf:!ological cover fo'l" lsrs own i.rl&cUvtty over b:eland and ttacapitulatton to

OMU vlMs m when put'to the test1 I rIre Iand, the .No tvnalQuesU,on and lsr I estabHallss the practioal urgency o·f internationalism, m revoluUonary poUUcs~ and ou:t1.1n&s the prwcipled basts for Irish solidarity work.

Despite the correctness of the ,critioisms levelled against the IS leadarahtp 1111 the document, it should still be seen as a fll\CttQnal d.ocumen,t. It was thaprcdnet pf a fa:c tion B tnt disc ave ring tbe vaal s ignUw!UW e of the a.bberatiollS of the IS 'leadership. It tends. tharafo:re~ tel treat the SociaUat Wo:rke:r Editortalreao~tton to the AlcleI's!lQioombinga as novel (see Appendix 1) ~ Yet this reacUon

was but a Iogteal eutenme of the whole politioal method of the IS •. AUho:ugh one,

'0 oul d find for malty eerreet Bmw menta i:u Sooial w t Works r before the Aldershot oombl:ngs~ they had been made before there w:as any mass hostile a.nU-Irlsb reaction in Britain. Before it was nece:ss9,:r.'y to etandf:l.rm. a:.gakU3,t cn.au.v1niEl m. In the British working class, The Laft Faction was yet to draw together ths. disparate tHreads of 1m Clitique of the 'laa.dersbip into a eumplete factional platform. m,y the 1975 pre-Conferen.ce d!scll8sio.n. this bad beendon.a,snd the rooterror of tho IS (and of the SWP to~y) m.ethod pointed to - Econom.fsm. In the 1975 plntf,orm. of the LEilf't Faotion it was recogml!led that the neglect of Irish soUd!:1r:l.ty work was 110,t the only .error of 1St but;

r, All have in common a. tenda:ncy to a,ecommoc.atewwa:rdIJ and tail the 1m.mediate eoonamd.e struggles of the class. We co.nsldrell' thts 10 be a:


consistent feature of the poltttcs of IS. The organisation baa an econ,otnisUc tendency to view y,1th hoatiUty an poUUCE! not po.sed direclUy "l't~,t!J.n the eoQ!'1o mic strlll",gle of tho elass e For tM~ reas,on IS putsforward the WRgEl e.nd tmemploym.e,nt paUoies that 'lit doea, FO'l't'hts reason it considers the question of govemment, women and Ireland

to be dh'~H'si'on8" (1)

Suc.b-a.n approach to politics was wen Ulust:rated by the fact that Tony CUffle book. on liThe Crisia" written in the ml -197081 had nothing to say about

British tmpertaljsm and Jre~and. The documanl does not nnake U clear that eeonotntsm is oolOld h) repea.tedly fan the test of twt.s.ts and turns in the 1nter~ national class war + The response to the Aldet'shot bombs in the .February of 1972 eould have been expected gIven the 'esfJoooe m l;']octaHat Worlwr to the Brl.Ush troops being' s,oot inoo the Six Counties in i\ugust 1969" The Catholic Civ11 lUgMs movement had met wUhftel."lce loya.list repression, mainly via

the notorious B-Specials .. CaHagbant then the Labour Home Office MinIster; Justified the troop pLacem,ents as pTovldtng' proteetton to the Catholics. The task ·01 revolutionaries;was to ~xpcBe 'the· holtoweess o.f t1tia cla.im andto point out that the real reason was to stabHhH3 'the situation so that contmued British domtno.tion1 via the Ulster LoyaliatB, could be secured, lnsteadt IS aceommcdated 'to the pate rnaUsf:tc ebauvmtam of the BrftiF.J.h working c b:SB ~ wnw h CaUagban reUed u.pon and belstared.

liThe, lnterventton 01 the BriUsh troops only o.lIows a temporary brea thmg 9 pace in whie b defences of the Catholic co w mu:nity oan be strength-enad !1' (2)

The m'ot that the treepa' role was primarily t.o halt the proeees of an indep.endent defence bet'fig built by the nattenattst minority against Loyalist pogroWB was 19noed.

BecsuB,e the me·thod of ee oo:u;nn1l.s In iii! tncapabte of a eoientlfic and cons iswnt analys,:!'s o.fthe lrish st~.-..gle~ it ~.YaS rneYitabletha.t the leade.rsbip's atte,mpta to 'co me to grips wi fit eve:nt.s in the Six: C nunttes would be ge rue of impreesioD.hun" le:adtng to conclusions forgotten the dRY after they WBl'-e srul.ctfft.edas

holy writ. .For example, curf WM to argue by 1972 that the IRA were finished, Jus~ 'before the lUdershot bombmgu proved t3e contrary. The 1973 IS .Irish Conference stated that the irish ertata was over due to the Sunnlug{lale Agree~ went. The Left Faction refuted these at the time and were proven' ecrreet ..

After Aldel'shot the, IS leaders ran for covel', en·ber d:roppiIlg the' p,oaition. Qf 't.gnoo'n.dUiorutt but critical support", o:rma.king 8. nonsense of it. For B'ODle

two ysa.rs a.ft-.er 1'972, the IS did virtuaUy no work armmd INland. Even the opportunities opened up by tbe formation of the Tr-oopS Out Movement (TOM)

~ 1973. were subjected to secml"ia.l1 dis m.issal. The demagogic device of' the leadership used to oppose work fu. TOM - doing It independently ... was a sham. EventmUIYt IS'ls f:rai:.el'na.l organisation in the Six Counties,. tbe Sooialist WOl"ike1'9 M-overmnt '(9WM) was moved, to ,officially criticise IS, a criticIsm which was kept from the mcm1OOnl. Even the. IS Irish Conferenoe of 1'97'3 was f,oreed to C'onfh:m the scandalous 8,tI'l.OO, of IBErian solidarity work,

The Left Faction. produced a conslderable body of material during its exil!l:~encl@. Howaver~ the 18 leadership never saw ftt to grlllce the memilership with one word or rap,ly to ,any Left Faction position. A leader.ship which refused. to respond poUUc.ally to: the crltic1s~s was bound to deepQ"b 'Its errors. And so

it WIlE!1 to be + The Btrmlngha.1ll Pub bombings of Nove rube r 197 4re9ul'ted in 21 deaths, mainly civilian. l'Idat;y more, soble lOOt were tnjured, Althougb the

IRA denjed respcnsfblltty, and the posaib1Uty 01 a Special Branch provocation rewains to this, day., the aeStUDption of IRA involvement had to be met head on.

All the fa:Uul"t'lB underlined by the Left Faction a few months c!il.rUer in Hlreland~ the National Quest,'on and ISII were amplified. Sw faUst Worker completely ,eapUu.wted to the wave of chauvinist hysteria.. Its fron pilge proclaimed II All .EI,ocialists must eondenmd theBe kilUngstl. (3}

Socialbd WOl'kerls response to Birmingham. was a$1 attempt to; placate the chauvinism of British work..ers, rather than ebaltenge it. Not only did IS not subordinate crlHcls m of tu P:rOV09 to unc01lidUiona.l support for the'!.!' right to carry through. these actions l' but the ,an ne is: ms the mae] ve,B· we re made from ent:i.rely the wrong g,ta.ndpolnt~ SociaUet Worker did not crlUciae IRA acttons from the point of vlew of the atomisillg efiect they have upon the anti-imperialts.t 9'truggle within tbe working c lasso{ tr'B land • On the cOllh'arYt IS c l'i.t1.ctsed the IRA from the· vantage of the ~n'ured sens,tbtlI.tJea, of the British working class.

r I!

The record of tJhe SWP since H174 is equally depressing. and no le8.s. dlsgra,e:,eful. It should be Bt1'6s.sed that the :responsibility ltes upon the ehcalders of the IS/SWP leadership for tRUing to dewlap an. 9ntl~imper1a.U8t movement. Witbtn the far left there Wag no o,t'ffil.e r o:rganisaUon in the ear'iy to mld 197 (I s wi fha bigg"6 r 1 wplantalion m. the workt:ng class. The proletartan ma.ke-up of the' SWP hu never boon higher tha.n at that tilne. Tbe fallure to turn these favOurable conditione to the advantage of TOM 11:01.11 1913 were squandered. Gradually, after 1975 when repress,tan was stepped up, Isolated SWP branches showed anIntereat in TOM.~ Evenu.tally.,. in 19713; the S'WP· h~Iped prndnee the f:l.rat edt.tioIl. of 8, Tr.oops OUt newspaper ..But UsretaUonahip to TOM was always halft -bearted, happy to service TOM and in return 'be givsn credibility via a place on TOM platforOlB. It was oertainty:t odds ",,'!tl!: any sertous work in the trade unions on lreland,

The IS never took a. politioal lead in TOM. WihtlD TOM split in 1917, it W1E1 left to Big Flame and the IMO to make the :nmnlng. The IS only commUted itself to UTOM at its 3rd Confermce in 1978~ The last fiw years have seen notMng change. The SoolaUst Worker response to the Le Mans bombing in 19n!t to Wa.rr-etlpotnt and Mouotootten!e. deulth in 1979'~ to the Cbelsea barrack bomb of UHlO(9 1) have been but echoes of Aldershot and mrminghJun.

Launcbing no inItiat!ve of its own, the BWP has been content to tatl the work of' othe 1'8 t mi mte ing the po UUe al oo:nkrupre y of others: in the ,p.t'ooes5. This was as true of'the AUgu9t ltlth 1'9'79 mareh mUw.ted by the Young .Libenla as

it was of 'the Hunget" strike campaign when .sooialist Worker mirrored the humanitarian approacb of the paciftstB. the 1100l'al9 and tnecl'ergy. We can expect Utile more in the 1'980s from Soci.alist WOl'k.el'~ Th.e S\VP tam.ely tacked themselves ontothe i"ebrwlty 19'82 Labour Conuniti.ee on Ireland conier'ii'lnc,ot wbteh was: not built fol' by t.he SWP, hardly attended by them and barely recorded In the pages of their newspaper. They will hibernate until the resistance of the na.tIonalist population in the' Six eountt'es makes "it diplomatically iWpQSs!ble" at whw'b. point they wiU devote a fraction of theh" resourees to, oHsertting oritic'isms. by' peddUr.ag th.eir latestvartetJ· of broad (fe erose-class] soliduity movement. Bold anti.-imperialiBm" tb,G vel'y least the Irish deser\o"t!, wnt appear, :If at all, after the event in the pages of a theoretical :review. The shameful episodes in

the SWP1s histor-y, recorded in these pages, wiU likoly return to shape the ruture~ unless U~ Rarlou9 mllt tan ts in the SWP l Ru.ncb ,a e once rm d fight a.ga1nst~ their pas t~


1) uWorktu's Answer to the Crisia" (Left Fad:Lon Pbl.tfortn) [:I' 17 .2) ItSocia.1I.iat Wollt'iktudl 21/S/69

3) "SCoiaUst WOJ1'ker~' 30/11/74


Why ~9· ltnBce'B9i.lu·y to :Wl"iOO' t11m document? For at least tbe~aBt two YEU1H" EB's work-om thel Iris iii q~estlQh has been in dec! me. Indeed it ·whee·" 'in declIne

is inca tlwhJgllwoint ,of i11:vo,hre ment In the 196981971 period. This B moo ld he 9urpr!l.r:H:lJ:g ·to a1!1'co'mrodes a:t.nce the stl"lJggle 'm_ Irebmd has ,moe ·that period mUms tfied ;we have seen ·th.e Failll of sto rmDnt~ the m01oo_y Snday M.a:s aSicre ~

the Provo T B, C ampa.fgn" the, rise and fan of ' pOd l' B M l'Jng' and the Pro~ B tAnt 'General St:rllte (1) ~ Recently the, fl ros t a ~gfIS of 11 WIU' we a.rlnees r, have OOIUll to apPBa.r!n Britain, and the ruling amBOS b.a:v~ opened_up 9. sem[~pll.bUc debate OD wb.etker or nOll to~rt out of Uleta r (2) •. An this. at: 81 U:me of mou.nting ,eCrIJI:nQm~.c end B.ooiam c:riais ~ It Sge1:n8 bardly credibLe that a N'Volu.Uonary organlss:Uon would let Us Irisb work decline in sueh 9 period.

Why ill 11'elland ao impomnt f.or the Br1Uslh workin:_g clug. a.ndfol'fhose trying to buIld ,B. i'eVoblt~_onary par ty? Firatly~ 08 it ~s part of the current crisiSI of our Ming ekeD - ha.vm.g imwediate r'epercUBB~on9!b.are; a "get flle troops,wtl! call could we,ll becow.elmporitant if the bl~part1san Laoour/'r,oryagreement bl'lea.ki:t dowill.. mater js also a.n area where the ruling class CM tryout some

of th.eir 1!90hm.t:ii.ons for tIre cl'i,p)·ts. OUr rulers M\le an a.fllly well trillned In tecimique:a. l'anjt:ngfrom rh)lt control to full seale urban nghtlng:~ The oocu_patIons ,of HeathF(liW and the, uUernac,e,s, .Qf Kity,ol.l show b.ow olose tbis eUua.tio,n is to' us at pVBS8nt. on the other hand an al'myweakemed and d'e,momUsedby its ~Ilu:l:k of success inEIIeland lstha.t much Dlore vulnerable 1f u.sed agalnst WOl'ktlil:s fn Bdmfn.

SeQolKly~ ireilUld tEl lmpormnt'l.ooologically. It is an hJBUe fo·r the yelLow preB9~ toe radi.o ud TV 00' sto-ke up eba uviniet pass iOnU!UfiMgst WOl'ke rEI" 'hatre d ,of

tha Irish r(including irlah workers in Br:l.t.e'ln}. 1:dentificat:l.onwlt.h 11'our bays!' In Ir.ela~d. hostility to IIviolence andterrorie m:t~ when the appr,essed fight baek, t.oie·:raneeof "law and orderH whe:n l'Iepr,eseion is Bteppedup~ lIle csnexpect

an 1Dfrem:sU~ed ue, of t01s w,ea.po.Dof· ant1~Il"ii!3ln ~MuvlnlBm. pamUelw:i.th r&ch!!t pil'lo~)f.ande.. We ean expect it from tb.e same swrces in varymg formBt,La1J<:m.2' P'arly MFa. Tortes and the National Front. T-he l!~ltte·r are a.t the moment In oloser aiUarti:ui}wtn.l. the .orange· bigO""..s which m.:Il!.y bring them some large aeals support in O1asgow andpe rhapeL1.ve rpoo~ (3) ~ VIstaI:' Itself eQUId be o.brldgehead :foil." a realfescis t U'WrW nEl.nt whle hi \VOU 1d t'breD.WD. both the Iris b, mJld tbe



.. I ........ ~ ... "_._ - _.....: r- ..... ~ _- -~

- - -._ ~ .... "..,. :..,..~-...,..."..."...."....-~.-- ...... _. -_._- - -

- 9- ~

.Bdttsb working c~.aa.BeH. Tb.1rdlyfo:r lUI ms l"f'lvolutlol1utee, OUI' IltUtude to the Irish nat1.onaJt etru,ggle is a~y test of our :l.nternatlonillilln. U Is a key issue on wn~,c h to build ·an mt.e I'IlQ tiona: lilllit eurrent In the Brltl~ h working e ~!iSIS. A BritIsh W(;!!'Ker com mUted to inte rnattona Us ttl over Ireland 16 a eomrade who can 'swim ag.m1i.tls.t tIleSillea.m'.

fmJ tIl.8 ttsnt Gf~bl8 till nothIng slilort Qf ~ 9CRnWi.L that I. S. h&:!l doaeao lIttle to even educa.te :l.ts own memoo1'sblp on ireJla.nd. It. can certainty lay no ,cLaim to, :have done any rn.QJ"e than an ~ptBod1c propllgaJ'l.da p~ec!!l in SociAUmt Worker with. Bom.e remAl l'd:porting from MJk Ml.ller and E amnnn r.wc.ann.

The comradell on the Il'lsh. BUilD-COmmittee eaennt M matllfi: scapegoR(tg for thts. Tlile resipemfill1b.mty, 'Yj1'e bel1ev-ef Uee 9QWl.l"!ftly wU:h the Leade1r'9Mp~ We belleVle!l tba:t I. S .• 'B· praotloal faHlngs flo·wfrom ~ politicd weakness. Thougb M. S. sta;ntiB fo,rmaUy fot'Wl,condttionat bu~, crlt1c~U SllPPOri ler aU thos'e seetattata andre~ pubUca:t1l9. figb:UIIg BrtUsb .Im~,r1.a.lism.u it had n(!lv~r gjwntb.ta positIon an agu::aUo1:ilu cutt:tIl,g' edg~ - :1 .C~~iIll' de:feaUet sl~~m. TIlII ~s not to Bay we dfdn't a.tmcik; Ihitl!dl: poU.cy on. tr.eum.CI. For' many worl"llu'S under the intllUt!llC!f!l ot nhauVln1l.am'lli19 wmstantamount to 0pMLy fJflpOUsmg UU!! C2:t1f;l0 of the IRA£ HoweiVert for t.hose who. were deeply oo:ncerned With n.-elsvd and wbose attitude WRa nearer paclflsm (hoshil! to the troops bUt. also to the IRA) - those in short mast Ukely to Jo'm t. S .• ~ out' {me Wq eq:ulvooalt lom~wtmt snam8-f!lced 2Jn:l! half-heamd. IIW-e ,B1IIIPPOri the UtA Ie right to defend tltfl Cilt'llOUC wor[.ooira liwmfJs,r;I'We snppol'it them but we cannot support terror:la mil ~ O-~r stRtements U mea.nd a,gam I.votdledoutright support for the Ql"med l!i!t.ruggl~ (war~of the IRA aga1nBt the Brltteh.tr·ou-ps ~ Indeed the NatiQn!U Committee and the National Conie.l'eJiC@ .Hr :lfurIJed to tA~ up ·thl! de(eat1st B~ogan uFo!:" tile IRA I\ga,mst tile Bl'1Ushl ralyl

Sit 9 b:a.:rp C onttu t with ttsuse ·of· II V:!tctOl'Y tlo t be NLFu In 11:t68. (o4}

Wf!l believe it is vlbUiy [mport~nt that 1. S. Ul!ldert!!kfHJ a whOt~-hearted aglt:itUon

to WiUj it noo-ahifluvinlst movement In tbe Br1tiBh worklngcla.sB fot' ttl)! wlthdr'aww of the troops. wet;.elleve that ill sucba movement L s. must rail6 ita own anti!mper1:;;Uu.t pos1Uon, and that In this work the poltttcal level of Din" membersb:ip ean be raised ,ondma.n.v worke rs woo to revo lllt'l.on.a:ry s ectalts m, We M lieve that this can only be dane with a fundamental and honest rfl-lippralsal of the groupla politics on Ireland.


I. S.ID too foul' pO':!_Dts for left 1RI.Uy adopted in 1'968 st:re5S1ecllts n,o'ppoBiU.oo to ImpedaUa m a.nd su.pport for all mOl'ement,s of nat10ruU UOOJ'a!lon'l

The g'l"(mp baa 8ubs~qu.ently adopted with !,fjg~rd to the situation in MNIlWd a tmBiU()ll .of

~'Ull.condttional but c:riU,cal support for aU tn.ooe BootaUsts and repubUcans

.. '\:. _ flghtlng Brlt15h i lnperia1iB PI" .. .

. lVhy_ is this position an abBoluw necess.Uyfor revolutionary soola.l1sta attem.pUng

.: to tmUda pl~rty in li!;n:d m too. working class in Bnu.in? Why is an in.ternBtloflalist peat tlon cru.ci.ltloo au r QV.m: 9uccese?

It 1-

• --.=......-.~ --- - - ---- ---.--- ---

- 10 -

The political basis of internationa!H'ltn is 'that the class st:ruggl C~ImOt ba unde:l"S toed .':;Ii mpl,:Y i'n 'l;.e I' ms .of the Ci\pltalis tjworitcr ant!g'{. de III in a eing~ , ~:0!Ptrl.. hnperialla m has made all national crise,E! a. plrt 0',£ a. world crisis - the iocr,easing competltton of ever larger capit&llilliw determines thl!! relationsbtp between the Brltll~h ruling class and tbe Bl'it19h workers. And in Britain

as theoldeB:t im.perialist pOWCl" tms naa, been true for a longer Pl!Jl'Lod than in any other C61Ll'ltl'S". The. criHi:;: of Britisn tmpcrtalts m ha,a been Ute major determinant to tM o lae a struggle E lnee the First 'Wo rLd Wa.r.

Internattonana m is the reeognttten t1ult the working claas CI .. l1U·O't Ilibel"l.1;e Itself w~,tl1oul ullcO'\f'(!ll'lng toe full nature of the ~l1tei'eats and poUciJ~;s Of TrUe own" ruUng Class. The Iast 700 years, baV(!, seen great upheavals of mmta.~nlcl"~ rna,jot ci:.!1shes wltb.the' el:np~oyera AJ'Id thesta:te. bUt only ,OM or two episod.esm wMch large sectloM of th'8 craas have broken wUn the irnper1,alist potletas and Ideas of the bourgeoisie. One such. episode was oppositIon to the .B,rltish intervention in RUBsia in 1'920. (5)

How doos i mperi.lUism ,affect the class st:ruggte in Britain? First. it ~l'e8.tes

the basie econ.om1,c 'condHJons of the class struggle - such as the crtsts ot the 20'8 and au's GO that er tile tiU'S ano 'lU'S. ISeccm(l.ty the crlsis of imperi2,list dominaHon ia part of too political dUficulHes of the BlI."it1s'h. rullng class e' both 1In its relatiotlB with its alltes, and rivals, and with these fOl'C'es of lIeslstane:e which its exploitation and oppression can mto being. ArId ,the simuUaneouB problems faced by the ruling class in. Ireland and Britain reinforce oneanotherthe employment of ,over 20,000 troops in Ulstel"f the expendtture of large: BUms of capital both mJlitarily and totbuy o±'ft eeotlQllal mteresta and ma:iutaln social stabiUty* at a time when the ruling claBs 113 attemptIng to aehteve a st:rong position mllie Common l\.Isrketj in tbe process of herring tt use heavy coerclve meaeures on the worktlg class in BritaJn.

'They obviously try to turn the siruatio,n to their advantage· tdeologicaUyDy

Iin king do mes tic r 'e haos" Yoo1th that in Ulate r I' by pos 1ng as J peace -8 eeke rs I and guardians ·ofthe national interest: in both areaa, and by sooking the fires of chauvintstn, They furln.e,r expertment witb means cf repression which might be lW,eful also in a domestic sttuatton, OUr duty to the British working claas i.e to attempt to minimise the suecessea of the ruling class and exacerbate its difftcultiea, This is vital in the ,situation wltlch workers in 1l11.tafn now face. in the 'battle with the prns,e:nt Labour gove'l'mnent (6) a.n!!.'1 an y foro." govern ment.,

Just aatn indUBtriai struggU!IB we oppose the Idselogy of the national inten!!st whloh is Invoked against seettcne of rr gre0)dy wQrka'l'5~' ~ or ag' mat the Asjan Immigra.nts who "Ulke BrltlRh JOIlJa,II; ~tp we must oppose the liUl-me nattonal lnteres·t which st-atelJ that Brit.ish workers have a e'QD1mon stake in the exploitation o.f 9. subjeetnatton, wbether It be ruled directly or indirectly +

A~a.1nst this 1tnaUonlil1 inb!reatrr we ceunterpose not the pacifistic, little -England apP'l'oa.cb of tha Labour Lefts 9:nd the CPOB-(7), but our complete soltdarity with all those oppressed by J Ulpel'ia.Ua m who fight bIlek. Thfl' more openly. eons~.!!tent~y and mi.Utantly tbeyoppDs:e ·;OUF own" l"uter9, the more wholeheartedly we !!IUpporl t:~lem. We are not lOacifistst not: simply fot' an end to the fi.ghttng.. but for the CQ mp tete defed of fl:le rultng e 1&B,8 J i t~ state fOl'eoi!!!s and RlUes. A bloli\' struck at ths m in Il'l!!Iland ts objecUwly a blow strucK lit onr chief enemy and is to be welcomedop:-m1.y as such,


.Neverthe1es8 we must r"cognlse th 't few wcrkers see thklgs In this Ught. Just as many workers accept the ideolugy of the national Inte at when used agaJnst other sectt 0119 O'f th.e etas s (as with th~ hos til U Y to the pawe r wOl'ke rs in 1910), 90 to an even luger xtent, th~ working class support; the 1 tpaaoe-keeping'! ' BriUsh in Ireland. And this becomes open uhauvtnism when the oppressed fight back a;gab1sl't "our boys~'. Even among those t.r1.jU~ who do not OODl!lciouaty sympathise with British repreaalon !i.nd are sympathetic to eooia.Uamf this tar~l! tbe form of 11 flll.UuY,'e ~a understand fi'mvemellts of national Uberati,on. Genuine soci,a'.U~ts may often IUl.y: "we oppose :3ritlsb ItlltlC'Iialh'nn but ion't lrhllh naUon.aJ.. :i:s m also, a tllerely a di\'f! raton from th@ I't::at working clus struggle 'I I! "

Ma.r.x and Engels had this ~rticular argument wUh Bl'ttish trade unionists as eli!.rl~f as the 1860!s. 'Tb..o Brtti1ih objected to the Irishmen"s cencera with the freedom of Ireland as .' 'breach I of 1nternRltionalts m~ and a diversion frOoIn the emmclpation of the working C~a8s. Engela '.I.e reported to have l"e,pliedthus ~

1tlf member!! of Po conque.l"iug nation called upon that nation, they had conquered and contim;.ed to hold down, to forget their spe;ci'Uc nation;" a.lUy and poait:h:m, to '1'stnk nMiomil.l dtfferen~es1t and so' fo:rtb~ that was not f!nte:rnaUona.Us IDt it was nothing else but prea.ching: to them submission to the yokat and attempting to justify and to perpetuate

the domln:foD of th~ conq,u.e:rc r unde r thee} oak of 1.nte rnatio.n!l.Us m. H (8) I\da.I'xand Engels saw the British dominance in Ireland as a stone around the

neck of the B;ritl.sh working elasa ~ ThJa pOs1i:UOD was lDter mafnt.ained by Leiltln

in 9.rgll IDents witb thb8@ 'Vi no WQk the r ~ inte'l"naUona Ust!l vie W outUned above.

And he was most ghtll'p with those genuine l.,"evolt1tlo.ruunea like Luxembourg and her BolsMvlk sympath!se],'S such as Pmtlikov and Dukharln who thought that tluH:r extl"erneant.1 IHilUo,nsUs:m. was somehow more working (.dasa ~ more. purely proletarian.

uThts is the 058~nCB of B08& Ltxembourg=s ~mU9.inger~ot'~ •••• 0 in

their fear of plA.ying~mto the bauds or hourgaoh!i PI t!o:nalls m ~ people p]ey tnbJ too hands, not rnarety of the bcurgeotsre, but of th~ reactlouftry nationalism of the oppressor natton.ll(9}

Lentn caned tMs attitude 'tlmperinUat Economhl,mu bsesuse, like the old EconomJs,m whieh he attacked in ';Wh!lt ta to 00 Dcmerl tho,ugh on 9. higher level, it restrtctedthe elase struggle to a simple wGrker/b:mrgeoisconfiicto

The earliel' Economists blla tried to restrict the elaas struggle to the "economic" worker/boBs conflict .. Tbey obsenrec the p{).Utic~11ght with the state, and the Ms,to,1.'ic role ,of the wOl"kfng elass as leader of all oppMB~ed strata; the p8es-antrYt the intellectuals etc. They beltaved that this would all flow auto:m.at:l.ceHy from the economte struggle. Ltkewlse the Imp!.rialist Economists thought

that the at:i.-uggle for national U~rltUon was a d1.vBiI."llr!..oo from the atruggl,e wita ~ap!tal~9m. They ignored Imperialism and the need for the working class to :fight it in alliance withal] those who suffered ita oppressten,

The duty of British revolutionaries ii!! first and foremost to fight our own Imperhi!lis m. Covdemna.Uon of US lru.perlaUa III in Vietnam is relaltc;rety esy. Bu.t cur fig'bt mutlt be b!aed on u.nconditional ,solidl1lrity with all thome fighting for na.tl.on .. l freedom fo!' lrell1Ulo, not only with the Irt9h wOl'king ctass, ~v,en though W~ recognise thAt they alone can lead this struggle to final vkttory., We must not dodge hehllild iorml1bltioIH9 such as support for the hotel! working elMS ~ or for sympathetic gr-ol'1p,'!i like the SWM. (Hi) This would M to aacotllnd&te our-

~ 12-

selv~3 t() cbauvinilnD in the same nuumsr as the Militant group or the ~ 1 Worke.l"B .r ~volutiooali."Y P.a:rty f .•

AU tb.e expDSu.re of Bitlt~b. .ab.·ooities", all thecl,l1a foil:" thill' witllu9lnwa.1l of ttm b_'IDOPS ~Cli:nnot. on their '0"1) d(ll duty fOI- a clear defeReNs t. PO,g,:tt1:o:n. WebeUa YEl that umcrnm:dlHouall but c ri tical Buppalrl i, corred. lIBut this rum to be t:ranslsited int()olU projJ2'gBnda and mg!taUon.. Wt'!· DliruJi t fight for this ltnetn the working ChliS.B mov,emDnt~ in the fac~orieBt tho mtllla8~ Of:! the bul.idlr..g sites ~ trying to bu!1d. the bee of anUdarity Eliot U1a.i.~t1y Ill! 8. m1lvament Uke 'the AJ:Lj (11) and not :restrlcttng it ilo "]rla.h WOl'J{u t:::nd.erL9.ken among ir:!.s.h wi,')rkera in Brlta:lnt

'Unporbult. uhoth thes0blaka aN,. -

Nobody could undeMstfmaoo too dUfteaU)' of thig , the hostility provoked., :BtIit this hostility exp!iI."fe;J]ced most 9,haryiy by our m!Utants In t·b.e f8(lt~rtes ~BtUJ.es lom1.1' to tbemall.~itudeof.ourtask.Mlmycom.!.ad~a \VlU be CmiLceme d witb. tll~ mmct oftbis Wllrk. n01U' ,grDWl' a.t 6e11111n IcriHca,t .perloda. But without ~t we shaU be living in a d~ea.w. WQil"ld and ,our gams sMU ~mtlS01'1. 'Were we to trim 'Our Ume on lrelmd·~ti mtghtmo,re quickly tmnd a 1&1'.,1" or_pn!slltiO:nl·1

'~t it would tm.doubtedly abNer OllI~b.e major obstacle wMch :U faces.

TbeS!I I:.l'Ietne ftmda. mental reuon! for a.cIeu defoa.tts t pctI,i tion 1M Ireland

- and thel1 :r.equf.r:e Nstatem.ent~. Til;!!. coofua:Jml '1~h£ch followed. the .J\ldel'8lot e,VtmR j tbe failure. of :prevIoat'! confe:renc IS to ell rify ourpos:i Hon and the adoption 9ubseque:nt~y of a· sell'~e6 of false positions, have reduced trI:Mly ·oomrades to, IOOwilderrnent on the Irish question.

Otffimr,s,may tb:ink we are ma~gn moootawout of a molehill. W. are cnncE!m.ed. that .. sc.nkb. lew to' th~ dangt!l r of gaIlgl'ene. ~

UNCONDITIONAL SUPPORT? THE RECORD or t. s, Edilmn,Rl2{U Alde_l'!lhot (12)

Beloire the A~der9hotbombtn.g, s·ave·ral aWedioor:lals speIied out loud and clear what 1!s meant in p:rRiot![ce by UD.cQndiUomal support::

~''rbe IRA Pl'ovie,iunals are ,RIso mdng foroe Rna vlo1enol wlth-tn.e 'opposite 81m: o-f brilillgtng down Stormont. - It i8 the du.tyof BrlHllb socialistsl tagi" w:tcondtUo:nala upport ·to tlloe€! :Ii1:gb.tiD,g :t Mporial.le m in lreliam,i:ll~'

uWe dldlnd 'ftI.erightof t'hEl lr1Bb. people to use 'wuoo'ver meU8~ vto~u,t ..

Qt:b.er.daet tbat seem e.xped~e:nt to 'them m order to, ,a.cbJe'¥e n&tiond lnd~pl'" endenee and wrltyl j a

Tuese stateme.f:l.ts, are WI!lfJ,utvocil. Imt then came the Ald'ershot bomb. SooiaUBt VJaTker Worker addl'l61!ulitng reaude.ra who had ooem Isubjected to nearly a week of press

~te Fiat i:ncbtded fn Us e ditoi"iai no ,9 tate me:n t of Sllipport f'orthose figMblg

i biperial iliJ; m • and conder wned the bom.bing as, pi 1ndi.vld'u!alterro·w, ml! whkb

u oamt'l!Jlt be su:pporte d by soc talista I i ~ This edl.torlal was closely foUawed by. nids Gn the homes ·of I, S. oomeadea in London and by garbled stat ... ments to tlruJ pmas from cdes. H!gglns and PQll mer. Thes:e made cl.ear our condemnation ~·Ald.1"lIhotwlthout DHking olea:rour s u.pp'ijirt fo·r f.11e IBA. SU})sequ;e:nflyt the me:m:oo'rabipwas treated fo sn article in tJle mtJemal lruIletim. by od.e 9. HJggtns and Hallas, up1.ad1'J&I!~i why ·the IRA were guUty of individual terl'--Ill"ism.

-13 -

was ~n terms of the iHdi.vimnu terrorism of tln'! IR A who were ~'ay 1 rAl 1D08t ftnilsb~dll. _'In(1 the upabot of all tItfa eonfusioo can be deetJ In a letter pr:lJrlood wttMut ,editorial d~9 cld.me:r i n SW. "b tch de rih=! with the I. 8. pnB tHOD in te r me of the I'ep~y given to the quaE-HOI]' ~ r~[!() you support the 11lA 11 It

uYea of eoursewe support tb~ .mA~a ~(the writer's emphasis) of the harrasaed ·catholic working clal!ls;no wa; C!m.u.Qt support the weapon of terrorism - not becRUge of Rny moral scruples IT • .n beeause it does notbing' to build a !'Iea~ d!egree of p!JU.Ucal conactousnsa i3 among ;~h~ \l,rarking due to se!) tba.t the Ral e:~emy fa British tm.per~~H1!Im and capitalism whleh lB 'l.ntermlfLona1.~ (15')

NowfMs statement ts ~!lea.rly Qondltt-::ma1 support; support for:t dm'ell!1ive struggle. By atre.1si.ng: 'ha.rra.5sed catholte workerlPJ~anyelememt o( suppcn;i

I:o.r the national 9t11!lg~e tsre m011e d. The Iltwck. On te1r'l"orts III .aUow,gmy-ene

to ~mk we dlsa:ppt'ov,e of the kUlIng of 9QldJl!u'f:j, ,_ UliIle9stitey - 3.reatm.cklmg cd'holic wor~e rs ~ In Bum tb,B answer to ·Ute 'qllf!SUOO is a..w~tc bed equ i vocaUon t ~d no' (I l'gWl:li.e.aUon sboul d tole ra~ rue moo 1'8 who put tois sort of 1 b:ie. And. yet om iPlIUbIJ,.quent iIlItatf!lmenm".of !lUppo.rt for ~1l th~,e sooiaUstH and repUblicans figWttlg Britishitnpel'iJu.iamu the sUe 5 ra: on defence (Iff cathoUc wo,rkel"B be bnn. nl\a1ned.

WI! "1"gt1et.Mt the a.nsWI! I" bD the 'lues Uon ., Do you support ,the IllA 1 U s bQU ld be rou:ghly:

nYe:B we 8U..ppo,rt the rigbt of the Irish peoplf!to drive the Britisn ,army out of' I'nWnd~';l"he UtA is fighting to do tWe~ IInd~thQ~gh we .s,trongly c,rtticiee SOmB QI' the il" me tt,ca a,s 1~l:(.l1l.llilte I'producti ve to this alml we a.upport the moo,condiUcmally ,as, long Ilsthey 9t.rng~Ie fol' this. 'f i

'1'01 present ICl'U.io~sms outs~de the terms of clear WIlcrnru:HUooal support fa unprine ipled. W"'-tbout suo h. a. is tate ment j e riUoio rus be eo me 'Jon.d! tionm as in

E d1.torial 2'81.,

None of this detrmcts from (\IUt' d\Jty to crltlclee • but crit1cisro.~9 not ,0, mea.ns of av,o:ld1ng tmpopula.rtty.in the Bririfilh working class mavement. In Britaln~ Cl'lUclsm must ~, stlhordu-tate to .guppOl't~ '\iVhat is more. It ahc-uld not lotely be obJectio.ns to, this or thafmJHta.ry tactic ~ but a clear expJarwtioo of the wesikD.es B es of thepoU tics· of Ute m A.


'The .ma,jor red herl"'ing which we dragged into the debate by the Aldershot edit;" Ol'lal was the characterfsatiolu of the inCident aa individual terlloril!!;m, ad 'te implied e!Kteusion 0'" thmchancre ria litton to the P rovililor.a.1s bo mbmg. U is wolth ptII1'8utng thie, Iilcrguruent ooe,~.u.se of the lr' U of el':tm:'!l to which!t led, thougb. the term Itae1f~ u::I.nd:i.vidua] te~ro:ri!.9rnl' i has beep quietly drop.;ped :In. cur coverage O'f Ireland, to 00 replaced by the even more da.ng&1"OtmJ nt~rroria mil.

The .Ne ch .. imed t1!mt the Alool'sbGlt bombing and w90rthe b!.'llmbmg 01 butldags and the ,u8umaUoo. ,of poUt!l.c1lu.le! arete be iiJ one mne d en the grmmda of the classic M4:rxist C sse against indl vldnal te 1'1'01'. m ~ But wlmt :l:.s ind1.vldu.al terl'odom? '''The bomb and too revolver u a. Sub9Utute for tlllUll!l action - a 8Um Urute for poUUc~ ~ iI 15 the formulatten oi the edlto:riU. 8-0 fa l' W'l!! can agree ~ But. from here we need: to he, e a:refn1. .NeUt.er the be mbtng ,of buJ.ldJings nor the U 91siwltJioo of Individual paU ttclans t heads of 9tate etc + a..re,!y thelr fiGJtll!!.

- 14-

acts or mdlvldiual terrorism. We mention this because, on. this paint, we wtbleBsed SOtUl~: confusion in statemeets from NO members .'::::omrade Harman argued against .tJ.omblng butldtngs bee,BuaD the proletariat wanta, to take over the means, of production and ia therefore not in favour of their destruction. But W€ire 'we to take tnt! argumsn! seriously" then armed insurrection; street flgnt1ng and civil war would be ruled out for ,the working class. For revoltionartes tacttc!lle.Kpedi'mlcy ~ tha:t is the LElff:fety of the revoluttcn, ts the tmly criter1on.

Marx:1sts do D,ot oppo!!le terror in itself - indeed the Red T'erl'Or is ilL 'nec,ossa.ry feature of the l!ullpp:re! ston o,ftbe! bourgeois te ~ Vlbat m.a.kes an actlndl "dUll 1

te Ji'rorls En 1B its taking place wb..en there ts no mas s move m.entf no aetten by too maasea to which it relates. Lenin attacked the anarchiats OIl' Nal'od.n1ks in that th.ey atkHnpt in periods of reaetton or apathy to EJub!!ltitutef,orthe maas,eSt or tel !lIU mmon the milS I!I es with a startling act, hut when th.ernas sell are on. the moV8 these gentle man are not to be found, If suo h ac'te are pla.oed withhl 'the oontext of Ol.aSS struggl,e with the' forces of the ruling olass, they may be criticised as being effective 0'1' ineffectlve'1 but the cannot be cbara.,eterised as individual terl'orhnn,. T.rotsky made this 'Cl@JRI' writing against the background of the Spa-nis h Ci v11 War:

t 'lloweve r und.elr ,[}ondl lioJi1ls of civH. war, the a!!l,aas,g iuat1onof in dt vidual opp~e9iaO.r8 ceases, to be an act of lndtvldualterrQt. If we shall say, III revolutionary bombed General Franco and hie staff into the atr, it would hardly evoke moral indignetion (!Ivan from the deQiocmtic eunoohs. Under co:ndltloo!l!l ofclvU war a s t m.U:!u· act 'would' be 00 mplete ly pc Ii tlcdl yo e!X!!)edie:nt.'1 (1'9')

The same is true of the alJsas8~nation of poltttotana. NO members agll~fi argued Us 'uBell6!!19ne!Js, smce poli'tto1an.s can be replaead, Thill is the eRse wtth policemen and soldiers. ootit 'hi precHse,ly when ~ certain penon can not ,suily ee replaced oy the ruUng elaes, when it would throw them into confusion, that assassination mighit he completely expedient as one means among others.

Lento in 1'906 pointed out tha:t Ma.rxiam l'pOlllitively does not reject any form Qf Strugg'h3t!'~ and 1m t.be same i!lrlielehe state,s tb.l;t HguerHLa aetsIn the form of terrorism were'to be recommended aga.h:u~t 'b:rutaJi. government 'lffictaLs and memters of the black hundreds. II (HJ) .No,w should anyone, object that Ireland is not RUSSia., Len:l1n cbaracterised Carson as Uthat black hundr-ed Iandlnrd", and his followers ,QUg, "armed lange ,of blackhu.ndreds. PI Nor was LMlin beb~g momentarily un-rnarxtst or' bending the stick a Uttle to,., far. M:a.rx. bad him,B,elf wrltten in 185,0:

"Far from opposing so-ealled exc,esae"h instances of popular 'revenge against mdt.viduals 0'1' pUblic buildings. that a.re associated only wtth hateful reoollections must not only be, tolerated but the lead in them ttll1!l_8t be taken. It ,(17)

Different NC members attempted to defend their characterisation of m,A moUos as lndlvidua~ terrorism in differe.nt Wa:YB. Cliff denied that the qu"stion of 'the maJaR movement was decisive ~ after' aU had not, the NarodnlkB (Narodnaya Volya) go.t a mllllS movement" and yet were: they not indtvldual terrorlata? He slmuld ha've, read bill 01,(1 arttcl,eiQn Su.bsUtutionism1,~~'here h1! says:

- Itl -

!IIn tlle :rlixU€ls and seventies of the 19th cenll!J:ry~ small gt'OUps,. mere handluIs, of inw lleetuals t pitted the ms e 1 yea age in~d the mighty au too l"8JC Y ~ \\'hHe the,maIJ9 of the pea.eanw in -vhese nams and inroreslts tl .. ~IS,€: Nal'odfilks acted :reDlarned indifferent and evsn hostlle to them, 1T(20)

Comrades Higgins and Hallas rememberl'tlQ'the!r Trowky (and CUff) e Utt1e more clearly dectded to rest their case on theabssnce of a civil WAr';

IIn:8; state of civil war exists then certainly the case would be lenUrel~! dtffer·ent .• , •• ~ ~ ~ the -argument about terrorism wou.tdbe il"relevan.t"! (21.)

But \VLU'S are deflMd by lA"..al:'Xists as tbe 11CQuthU!lAti,Oll' of policy by 'ot~6r means", and ifanyon.e deubts that ·~other means" besldssnormalpoUUcal rue,toods are tied in Northern Iralandahe 01' he mUBt 00 bltnd, The .British need l'JJ.Qt drop Napalm 'Olli Belfast for there to be a war. SocIalIst Worker pdor 00, the AldeI'9hot bomblng did not ooaUam to, recognise j}\ war:

"The Tory Gove rn meent ~a:wagi.ng a C elealal ~1" In Ireland ~,~ ~ ~ tM working (l'las!! movement nlllst ruft.ke it impossmh31 for t~e Tories to C onttnue thei r war, IgM!~t the Iriah people" (22)

ClvU war is thel ccmtinuatiOln O'f the: clus struggle hy otherme,anB~ tha:t is

by military metbeda. lt 19 a war between the e.xploi.ted end the e~plClUel"S. m Ireland the war ie ooth [lftUonal~ wlth the BriUsh. Imperli9.1ist bourgeoisie ass::iistedby the Gl~'e.n TQries'(23}. and civil. wUh the Orange bQul'geo'isie. 'The national 0'01oni8l1 wa r L8 the refQ re e tv Hwa r, and tt Is preoiBe~ythfl inability of the RepubUcans to fully' appreciate, tbis w'h:li.chh.a-mpers their atruggle.

The more recent artie! e by Ja mefll. 1ait evades open suppo:rtfo r tbe armed st:rugg!le. To 9a.~' - ~!we understand the accumulated: b1ttern&IllB and repl"e913:loill that makes men and ·wo men take to the bo rub and the bu net. We do nat, hQwev~r ' believe llw.:t Is the way to end tbat repr'B~stonU (24)1 would appear to' wdte olf the whole idea of armed :t'6Btatanoe, M wrong. Toe ref@renm to terrorIsm doesaet evoo try to dtstinguUlh wOlc'b.ftctious QN te'!'l'orietic as tlle NC supporters of tlo Alde.rshot ltne did in 1972. In the :reauUmg confusion this art1che. like soma:ny other,sf faHs to say openly - yea; we support. the IHAts fight against the,BrI tis b Army.

hi no sense can. th.e cluu,'seterls11tiion n~ndiv:[duat terrorIsm" be: a.ppUed to ,the tactics of the IRA between tbe Introdu(lti].oll of inwrnm.ent and the a:boUHon of Stormonf. The IRA bad mass support not only in the B,b: countle9~ but alsotn the border CQuntJ.es ,of the RepubUee:nd in its major oities~ 'The IRA ooulid not anve earrted on successful guerUla w.arf6~ withou,tthelr auppor1Jnd&ed Wi! the br,ea.kdown of the. ceBseflm over Lenadcon Avenue eviiI.ltiQfiS demomitrated~ the proviaicmal unite cannot long abstain from setten when the popUla.Uon. need's and 00 mands U .• (26)

T'he narelessuae of a term Ilke H :l.ndi vidual 00 r 1'0 riB mU at a tl meot the Aloorenot bombing Wile, not ooly tbe abrogation of aupporl~ but also e violation of the method of MRrx:is m ~ In Lenin' S: words:

" MarxlB r.n demands an absolutely htsterteal t.ltx:all1m&tlon. 0'£ the qU@isticn. of: the f'Ol'ffiS of B truggte. 'TO' tr.ell t U:d.s, q uestton aps;rt fro m \the concrete Mstorical alttu1.tion betrays a failure to understand fhe rudtmenta of dWecU.cal m~tejj'laUs m, u {:eel

- 16 _,

Our rooMv~.our O'\1'elh' this parted ·,'\1'38 1:1.190 B vtolation of the spirit of Ma;rxlst critic~9m - not animated by regret at tn-a mt9iskes of the m~ ~etnent at a

crucial point of I. Ufe and death 1Jtru:ggle. hut anx.loUis to diBtanceouraelvElS from. the nterI'ol'btal~~ Lenin in atmflar ciI'lo'umsUmi!:les remarked:

uW'hen I aee a Soc~al-DemocrIl!U(J tooont]elliln or .pUhUda~ not d19pla:ying regret ow rUl:!.e unpreep:u·@uineS.B ~but rathe 1" a pl'oorl ~ 'Dlupess and Q ,BeU~xhauUed tt!DdfHliCY to repeat pht'llI.s!!l1ll learnt by row, in early youth

a beut anare hbun t Bla.nquhnn and Wl"rori s ro~ I a 01 hurt, by this degradation of Uds mOlt wvoluUomnry doctdno In tbe world" H (2'1)


l1arxia m Ie ~ot tndlfle mnt to the exh5tenCB of ul.'Ho:ns. Ma,:rx O11ld E n!tels

recognise d that nation states we re the • ·llOl' mal pol ~ti,c&l dlrucwnMI of the

EU.l"Op6DD. bourgeloSie!1 and tlhat the develDpment ,of Cllplt;aUsm aw,m:kenedpeop.ies to naUonal U£'e and gave rIsEl to natioD:!'tt ,struggles" figh.ts for unity and tnde,pen~ dance. What:ts more ,Bue h B tares we re, in gene ra1, pl'IB.fel'abLe for the pvolemrtia.t ~thatBny nati.onal oppreBiii!oDobscured tHe class etnggle .blIthe opprea.sed nat1l.o11 andin'Y~(liV,ed ,the workel'B of tb.e opp rea B,or .nadon Ina t lent atCqules cbtg Im.ot'er peoples en91a,,\ement~ The wa:yf:or r,evQl.uHonariea to deal w.ith tb:iB

Bltua tlOD was not to ignore [)~UClna 1 ,oppress ion in fa.,r<oUl' of' the e las III 9 tmggle. Indeed such R:n aUUude hI the, o_ppres:s,or nation was Q froID. of nattonaltam, The w'O!rk.e.r,B move ment In ill na.tiob thatenala. v,ed o,the rs had ,q prl rna ry duty to fight f'Or the rlgbttlo tm'ldependenceoo thase nations. Marx ,I!II,W nQ tional oppres sten

as a means by which the bourgeoisie :r..euter,sthe wo,rker9 mOVel!:D.6mt. He himself saw Dd. fought fhls, tendency in tbe lBriUshwoll"kitng class,movement,.

:Marx: ohs,ervel~ the growth of cMuvini:!:Jm In ·the .B,rUha,b work~ng ela.ss:

"In relation. to the Irish wot]Qel'~he (thel Britieh. worker) feels hlmgelf a member of the rulW..s nation and so tUn:li8 himself Into a. tool ·of the ca:pltalb:a,t.s of his country §a:lnst Ireland, tWs, strengthening their domination over

Mt:illiJeU ~ II (28) .

Marx saw bo,w thts divided the worke!'B :m Britain. Wtitbl:g ,at the bellit of bila involvement with the leadem of the p-D\yeriula mdgan:mted illl,lons in tH first 'IlI:terna:t~onal, he .streSB6S that ·~th1B autagooiB m 19 the seore:t m ,the hn.potence of: the English working clasB~ despite Its Q]l"ganisation.11 (2'9)

Mlrx smd Ii: n.g:elatogethe r workern for theta:ldngup by the Brif:l.s b Labour' Move lIilsnt '01 the de mm.n.dfur Irish e mane i paU on. and of suppo.rt for tbll F,eniu IBl'tl'U_ggl,eeg&ibJ!!t the Brltlshgmrel'lB IDe-nt.And thlll! ,BoUnty tn. no way ohsctiNiC

01' waB: at odds w~th their objective view of the Fenians. Though Marx eons,tdered them a "fLower orders, rucrveme1lJt'! and I!Q. Boc:l.o.lisUct!llndency r on. il;he land queaUoht he also heavily crlt1cbu~d their cOllspiratorial taCtiCB and E:ngelspointed ou.t that their lead.el"i9!hlp was made up '!parlly of exploiters"~ Man!: aEld Engels did not cudemn public.Ity oven the Ct~lil:,kenWGln bombing, whlch hotb.coD.sidered &.11 stupi~d af[e:lr of a fe w s peciatJis edfatUlties II UkelytoaUenat:e the masa

move melb!t of support for the FOO1M5 t but sa ,¥ toot the unllty 'of the Britts h workers, with the lrlsb naUml:ltl movement nqu:h'.f:Id ,grea.mr con.cesatooe from members

of ttmoppressm,g tban from memOO1l"t!!, af the oppmSRedi nation. :mdeedtbemoot poSitive thmgfior Engels was tbat:

- 1'{-

tr'Th,e London proletariat de'clare every day more openly foll." the Fenians and, hence.-rul unh!3tl.rU of and Eple~~iHdthing h8t:'e- for a v.101ent ,and; secondly I an !ul.U-EnglIf!lh move ment", (30,

.Above aUtMa<1:'X md Engel;g took up the quesUoll of Irnlm'.id w~tb such vigour oocalime they held it WilfJ the k~y WI overc 0 me the ~ltical bac kwardnese of the labour mo've,mant in BrttBln. ''l''he prl bla condition ,of ernanelpatton barei was st:ru,ggJe by the BrtU1!h proletartat to bn'lo,k too oosla,,remenl of Ireland, Marx:

im..d n.h"eady experteneed the evastve beb.ruvlour of some of the trade union leaders em the Irish qu.eB Hen, ava!5i ve behavleur which. reappea N d when U ea m!! to open defenoe of the Pa::ds Co ttl mune , The U7 O'! B 91""· t1il.ebegi nning of the dis tribuUon of official hooo'l,U's M1~, postU.oos to ,'IlOrktng class lelilidera ~Ilr1al'X in 181'0 nooo:d with, alar m ~

t'tE nglillnd today ie ,1;\1 eeing 8J repBUU.oo of w hathappened on. a monstrous

s ealem !tnote1'1lt ito me • Any nation that 0iPpresses ano't:he~ .fcurgflS itlB own. ehabsn ~ (81)


Lenm'a earUe:9t wrltlnga on the national 'question are largely dtevotedto a defence and syste mIl tiBa th;l'n of the views of Marx: and E n,gels ouUined above. The !N'yt:BioniBt~ wi,th whom. he had to deal was H08~ L~e[nbu:r-g. :But flley did not "Uapute whether the PoUah wo:rro0ra a11,ould f~ht f:01''' independe,mce~tihey dispuwd wbetb.e.r toe !lest!! wbrkera al:loul:d f:~ht around the slQgan of the '~l"ig,ht of nat~ i.'ODB to self-determ.inaHon. Here Lenin 9.besaed the dWel''Emoe; between soolalism in an op'pil"ess,Qr WlI.d 'those in am opp~BBed naU.on. The Ia tw rwers free to fight ftxt, ulJiI:ependenc.eor not. Anyhow t their fh"st duty was 'to e mpllmsiee the lnte nmt - io:~.al nature ,of the class stI'1.1gl1e .• and to expose ruthle9s1y i.ll bour-geo,i.s na..Uon:aHsm .• The soci;l;dilst9 in the o:l)pl"essor natloo~ hOWeV,el\ had to fight tb.eir own, toMillly reacUOtllrYtDaUOOlal bll!D.. and therefol'ehad to e mphB.sj B!!:! tim rigbt to fr'8ediomn and. sece:r:uU.on of the enslave d nR,th>tII. IWd had to fightalloppres lIiem

by 'the lr~ govc;!!m ntent.

Lentn'8ma.~or work J:n~.iBI polemte waSt (I,f ,(!Q'IH'S0i "'The Right o.f NaUmlS ~o self-Determ[maUonll• {Stalm'ework on the naUonoI qu~'sUoo. (llil,.OOS from t.;hia PfJrloond deals with roughly the same Ilrgumente bu,t ill a. more e:cbemaUc and wooden fas,nlon). But, Lern!nl s tbjnkin:g at this ti me WU! do lUinatedby a. pi,cm:r.e 00: c:apitaU.st develop'l!!llemtwhjoh he BubBequetl.t1y ab;uldonedt and this change; ai;tel'ed aOID6 aspects of Me a.ttltude to' nsli.onal movements.

In "Critical Jiliemarks, ,an. the National Questionl! (32) Lentn aees in the dl!iVe~O'Pmanl of c.ap:i'taUfI Wi twou,Ddenc:iesI2s l:ilgB rds .aa Uona: Fi'rstt a driVe tJJ!tbe e re~ aUQI W mJ!.a ticual states. the B. wakening of 'm&fj 8 na.tlio:nalmove mf!nts; secondly~ ~e tendane y for capitaUs lilt to ,obI1 terate rIl1Uond pecuUari tiee by metm9o.fthe world roarket. The fIrst te.mdency Lentn sees as pl'Bdominlting in ,eapUaltaw!s yo.u!ht the, second in Us' 1:ll.8.tur-tty t hldeed i tsrtpenea 9, {'or 9001a 119, m •

Lenin .realised tha.t captbLUIl m had not develQped eve}~ty, and eonstdered tlhat t'be :H.rst !i,mg.., bad not begun tn Eastern Europe and Asia 1!IlntU mter' loa 1905 revolution ~ T'o Lentn,

MNn.ttonaJ mOWlI merits belong to 'the period of the fina1 vlctOiry of capitali.s II

- 18 -

over feudalismr!. {33}

The task of tht: 'bourge,ois-democratic· revolutlon here is on or the demands

,of the I progrs., mme- mini mum I. Leain e mphaa Ised Ita 11 mt te d 1100 nega ti va nature i I'To thrO\\" off the feudal yoke, all ni1tlonal oppreBsilOJ1~ and an pl'1vi'Leges enjoyed by any particular nation or language, is the :f.mperl3,.t!ve duty of the proletariat ,fUll 9. democratic fo,rc-e and "is certainly in. tIte interests cd the prol'llta.l"itm class t1t~l~ which Is obseured and re'tarded by bickering OIl

the national queo1tion. But to go ~y'O!ld tMse strictly limited and definite historical bruits in. helping bourgeois nationaliam In.eans betr-aylng the proletariat and siding with the b.:;;urgeoisie. This task is largely a !legative one. "(34)

Lenin again and again sire sse 9 capt talts m t 8 developblg role inbatlkward coun:tnes. and also its progresatve aastmflsttca of groups Hke the Jews~ \Vhat ,ts, elea.rlJr abaent from Lenin's thinking is the question of imperialism.

By J 3l'Wary :un 6 Lenin. re:cogni sed tha t the laws t phase of ,CD pitalsi m WBe far from one, of peaoeM asatmtlatton of nations by the operation of world trade. National opprel!ls.~on was not simply the remnant of feudalism. Impertallsm, the highest stLge of mlpUaUIi m, is e harao te rlsed by:

~! • ~ tbegrowth of mlUtariB ill, more frequent, WIU'S ~ rna re powerful reaetton i ,theirlterudflcation and expansion of naHonal oppl'lemslon and colonial plun.der. It

(35) .

Aetna result of his ana1lyeis of jmperlalts m, Lenin defined a tb.ird categol'Y of naUQnat situation (the other two, being the advanc@d oountries r and the oountl'illS of.eentrat and Eagt@:rn Europe) ~ In thiel third category were the' serni.-colonial and c:olonlalcCluntrlea - those oppressed ~ modern develop d hnperiaHsm. ADd the attitude of SOCialists inth:l.s sttuatton Is no longer met"flly Une,gatfv.e":

nSocialtsta musit not only demand. , •• the right to self dete'l'mination; they mu.st &10,(} render d!e;terruined support to' the more re'VoluUorn1ryeiementa in the bourgeois-deru.ocl"at1.c movements for national UberatlQnln. these, eountrtes and assist thelr upl'is,ing Q1" revolutsonary war. in the event o:f one agatnst the imperialist powers which oppress them. If (38)

Furthel\ whet} Lenin wrote !~The Dlscusetnn on SeU-DetermlnaUon Slum-ned Upu he pointed out that !!roactionary imperlalistc'a.pltaltSl1)!11 wale in fact restortng national oppression to areas wbich had been freed in the psrtod of capitalism's '1(lOmpetUlvefl fa.ee. Arguing 8,gainst tho Luxemoorgt,ats (including Bukharin and P'iatako:v in his' own partY)t wbo took the p.oe.1tion tha~ sin-ce i mp.eI'faUe m doo.:tned ind~'~ndent flI man states to aubordinldloo and exttno lion taen 900 Ia Us t:!l had no Interest in suppo,r(j:ng national struggles. Lenin pointed out tbat it was precisely ,the violence with which imperialism did this which. roused resistance and would lead to broader and more far-- reae hing mov;) mellts of fL.!t:l.ona 1 11 hera ti.on. The Luxemhurgj'Platakov postton he ca.ned "Imperdalfat Economist!! - drawing political conclualcns tmdialecttcaUy from an economic analysis. Iw_pa..8rielis,w'! oppression of uations, pr{yvokes national revolts wb eh are not merely "eapltaltst" ~ anti-fendal but. in tendency, _.!JJ.tl-1iDl~:!!lJ!i. and the:mlore potentially prni 0'1 aUDited onslaught on the world beargeetste, F01' this reasoa, Lenin'S earlier HnegflUve,f! approach is reversed:

"Formerly tb.emaln thing was to fight 1tagllinst TSQ:rismlt (and Il~inst certain

- 19 ...

smail-natfcn movements which it wag using for \HI democratic fH'lIda}~ and for tbe gl"ealA'3:t' revolutionary p80ples of ~h.e Westjthe main thing ~_y_ :fill! to utand aguinat the t1n~wd altgnetl j runt of the tropedn.L ;'It bourgeotate

and the sectal impemU~tSt and for the uttltsaeton or all national move 1:llent9 ugainst :hnperin.Us m fo}' the pnrposea of Boc1aHst 1"evoiUtlon. II (37)

To ig~ol'\e national sttUggles would then be a d1sI'lBter from tbe POL'1t ,of view of tbe atl'Rte,gy for proletartal:; i.'HVo~ution. But just FoB ] mpcrtant for Lenin is the struggle whlob. irol.er:iaU;JID lu.s opened • P within 0;00 workers movement itself:

"In the epoeh of 1mperiali9D.1., ewing to. objective OaUf!H!'JB, the proletariat ims bsen split into two intel'1'lst1ofial camps, one of which bas been corrupte-d by the 0 ru mbs elm t fan fl'o m the table (,. f the do tnt nail t nation bourgee is ie ~ obtaiDGd~ among other t.blngsl from the doubl~ or 'trfple ex~)lol'tat~lon of email naHoI18 - while the othar cannot Uoot't,tte !tSElU without Uberatlng the B mall natlon!lf wltbout educating the me.a8 s in an anti-onauvtn'l:st. that i8 antiannexationist. that: is r:e!eU~determ1nttt1ontst'~ 8pil'it~ I! (38)

For this reason, Lenin stressee, support for national movernents ls not aa it were something external (0 the reat clsse struggle. but is of the essence of the fight £01' a revolutionary Ieadersbtp f,' [thin the wo-rk:l.ng claaa, It la no concesaton to the petty-bourgeolale, nor does it obscure tht,ft,lural proletarian ~oaJ 'of the

e ocia.lifJ.t revel uUon. In tbe e ra of '! mparta lis m the old E com) mist~'9 a l'gu tnen ts w.er-e being repea'ted un a world Bcale. by Luxeml1"oil'gt Piab..kov and others. As before. Lenin bad to ffgbtthose ;h~v"nted to reject all struggle except; the economic struggle between the bourgeotste and the proletir1at~

'~The idea that the slogan of socialist -svolutton can be overshadowed by Unklng it up with a e:onsistently !'e'J'Olutional"Y position on all questions t Ineludfng the national question, iB certainly profoundly antt- Marxist" (39)

L811in flaye those who Bee the revel uil au as fI strni ght. fight between the working' elass and the bourgeoisie; and. who oharactf}rlsed the Iris~ !Raing of :1'916 as a tfputsch'l or,g.Qnieed ~J the oetit-bourgcolste:

nWUoe'V"el' expects it '~pure" sccml l'0ltolution wHl never live to eee It, SUch a person pa,yril Up 9~rvice ll.o :revoluti~r. wtthout understanding wbat revolution ieH (40)

Lenin's mature p!}sition was finally summed up in hils draft 'the!3ss on the National 'Qllies;tlon aceepred b}' the Second Congress oi' tv_€!: Comintern (41) ~ Sf mply put, tbeyargue:

1~ The extstanee of iroperlaUsn~ means an end LJ the ide~ that the backward. uaUons win simply foUow the pP..ttern of the advanced, I mparielio m inteneifle'B national antl'!gO'tliSOl8 among the develepsd states, tlssimUnt1M iB halted. and movements of national llberation break out in the colonle-s and semi-colonieB .

2. The proleuu1al. has to support these struggles,. Workel"s'part1e8 have to partle1pate in and even lead thea.. struggles. Involved here is the perspeotIve of permanent revolutiot.

3~ The ndional struggle'!! must be takon up a.B au Integral part of theolass st:ruggle tn the impel'ialini; epoch, They fire part of the programme of

the, proletarian; :revolu.tion 111 the op<:l~h of trannition.

- 20 -


The theory of pe rma.nent revoiutllm ~ develope d by" :rotBky in 1906 t, e~.pldmls the rela.HollBbtip 'hi backward cmmtrles between the bourgeoia-demooraUc and the proletarlan-900inUat revnluti~,~ Trotsky obaerve.d the uneven dave~opm.mil.t

of BWJsia relative to tbe uadvancB£:P' states or the West,. He obge!"Vedtne \VftakJledlfl of the baurg(m1Ble and im depe ~R:me on the &llWCraCI nnd om French and It,rJi.tish fimmce Ol:p,:ttru.. At tIM same time he saw that RluisiW! Industry' and abowl aU the BUB,ail.n proletaFwt lw.d developed on the level of the m.oat advanced bdUatry in the Wl!Ist •. From this he cIJllcludad that th., b:u,ll'geo!s-democraHc l'e'\rolu.t-fon would not 00 tmple mented b]l the' bourgeoisJe (lUi tlle MerJ;I3fhev:lkB

held) I noll' could the wo·rking elasa tn alliance with the paasilUl.try carl'y out

~f1s taka, w.1 tAout pas.!d:ng onto the tas ks of the sooJlallet revo!.utioR (as \VaiB, suggested In .Leninls theory of utile democra.Uc dictatorship ,of the pro'lemrrnt and peuantry'j •

'Trotsky was la:terattaeked (by struln) fut u:lporlllg the dUfel'once ootween the bourgeoIs :aM the 90Cbil~t re~oLuuon~l. T;hts would haw of course beelltne lameklndof' ,e n";or :IIS, that af the Impe rldJ!st E (:ono m.latB - coU9.pstng the national struggle into U. ,aoc'1aUBt :re1iolution, indeed :ignQring the specific felLtlIre:e of the former b at beat ,11 dberalom from the llreal st:r'EJ:,ggl@1r• But T.r.om~y maJre,g elear thitt tMa is not wbathe means:

I!, .... ,. the, permane:nt revolutiQn la deecdbed as a revolution that weLds togethe r the opp re 8B~d masses. of town and e mmtry aroUbdthe proletariat orpnlBe.i!J In SOvMts ~ U &llaOou8,lrevolution that ~etiseflltbat pro1leta.riat to paws l' and the I"elby opens up the pos sibil tty of (.he de moe ratic Nvolut1.o.n growfng over into the soolaUst .r'f!vobltion+ u

liThe pel'man!!!nt n\folliIUcm la not ,Q. Tleep' by the p:roletarla~ but the reconstructIon of the na.HODunda:r the lea.dership of the proletaria.t. n (4:3)

Thel theory of imperialism deepeDB and ~plafus the theory of permanent re"i'oliution. ]t ,BhCWB its appll.ca.MUty not ouly to BuBeia but to aU countries oppnssEl d b:Y' :I.mp0ria1~s m - too baa is of the, T pe r manence I be ing, in T r.ots ky~ s woros1tbat .

II 1m tne ID.ove mentsof eolental peoples tbe e octal ele ment bIends In c11 Vel'Se forms wUh tbenatlonal 'einlilent , but. both of the m are dil:eoted aga.Jrud;

:Ii mpe I1UI,B, mU (4-4:,

It is thei pr,esenoe of naNo-nal exploitation by h:nperiaUsm tbst lew to the struggle .9g,a.mst itl a atl'"llggle invoh~g a bl'oW Btl'ata of oppressed pe.aple -petty-boull:'gf! GiS ~ h!tel1ecwals t peasants etc. t ae weU ad urblm WD1"lren. '~o gay tbat the workbll class alone can end nath:mal oppresalon hl, nat to counter ... _pose f'he elasa st:l!.ilggle to· the ns tlooa~~ but to ,9 .• that the' wol"krngelass must ac Meve ieade rs,hlp 1.n the figb,t aga.htst hDpe riallB m.

n b~ ttliis need to lead. :!lotto rnJ:llR~eJ which. I'equlresthe pol1tioal and lorgarnia,atlonl mdependence of the proletariat from aU. peUt~OOurgeoi9 fQrEnatlQb:9:

~The Co·mmuniat. mternatl00'!alshould (l·oUaOOra.te proriaio:na.Ily with the revolutionary mo"e mont of the colonies and backward ,countries aad

even f':Jil'm an oJIIMoe r;rlth :U~ it must Wlc:Qn(lItionaUy mnlnm.:ln die ~lId.&"' pendenee of the pI'ole'~r1an movenJ..ent~. even if it Is only In an. enibryQn~c stag·e •. 1t(45)

The fPe:rmltnmrt BevLlhltl.an' can ne, and bne been, d~s,torted 1n a number of ways,. vm~y e ... e!tll."l~r so {l!n the questten of Ireland. The pest-.' Iderab.ot I. s. U.ne 1mB c0Ii9lBtEmtly t!Jnored the s!gnificance.of the na:t.iond qWalItlol] and has baldly ~(!I.!!Iad the work1:ng class stNggle &a 0.1'. alternative to Uie 1lI.l~.9takeB a;nd diBUWlrS

of f.he a.ctual a,t:rng~Je taking place tn. tb.6North~ Great play bas been ruade of resisting the a11uram~nts of petlt-beurgeets r'omllntic:llilm~ fa.r :more dan..ge:ruWl aClcording to cQII'llra.de~ eltfi a.nd Rrul~. !HId, P.;tlmer than .BrUlsb cnauvinia m,

SlIch c'Ompaceooy h! unfol.'glv.abla in 9001n:Uets working in th€l old~9t '~mpertaUB t country, one which r.reated In the Britl~b EmpirE! a. g~atsr Iprfson-hoU86 of hattoniS~ thaT' 'l'sa.1"hlt JtWl!siB.. T1f~ky jnl.ned ,vitc. Lsntn in strss!dn .. g the ~a~Uve ~ role de m.a..nded or co mhllmiB ts in opposing their own.bmuJ'tlIs I oppres B.~on Qf

other :na:UOO9:

H'l'be lllrltiLBh aooialist who faila to support by all possible means the uprlsJ:ngs mf.nllllndt Emt and India aga.I.bs,t the London ptutooracy- BUCi21 ~. ociiollet 00ge1'V88 to 'be, bra.iIlided wlthtnfamYt H 'not with a. bunet. "(46)

~ .

Ontb:e otherhm:l'I:i" the I Mo Dve, in th-s PIlRt a.t least t a.nd In line with tbeir d~BtOrti(!ll1 ·of Tl."'OIt8k:yhJ m. In genen.l1i held out the v1ewthat peUt-:bourgeo1B mo,w menta can. SODleihow I grow ov@.rt into p.rolef.arillJl molVe mente. This collapBe a the elas 9 atri1g-m:~e fnt.{) the naUmd struggle.

The:s,e.twn opp!Jis.Jlmg dtBWrtiOnB tolna !mperlaUgt CQlUItry lead to rlgh.tlst DO nltra-tefHet. abandornuoota O'f Pd:lum!'u:Il:. But an Qll"gIDlU!lBt1on opel'a~ amd str-UtbJg Nom in the Bdtlsh won:l:l:Ig Ohl.6S movement will l1Ilost likely be pu.Ued rls;htw-a:rd:S 'on the nat:l>on:d qu.es UOll unless it flgbts hard forltB Une. Whlle

"" ma.ltdlll hartland Jlntm'l:lsJ:[I!:en t on tl'te role of the WOl'k1Dg clus in Imlaru1

(a reIaUwly euy taak:for Bt1Urdl sa opposed to Irish l'@lvohtl;o:nar.li.@s) we B'boold Ie m.ind au rselves with eq uai ba r-dnesB and intran 5.~!lC e of the es B enee of an iillterna.t100.allst position for BoofaJ.tst"l til rUI irup.9rin.lle.t na.Umll~

~~Wb.at chamctenset!! &JBh~"i.a m on the E'l11·tJ.,Q.na.l qt!t!stionts fhat 'in Us attUudetowards oppvaseed nlil.t1OIie~ even the mO!llt backward, it co_idem thenl not only ,tha o~ eDt but a.lso the sub~ect of poUUos. Bolshevis ID doos not cooeem Hself to l"ecognisIng theh·l.nght! 1io aolf-determlno.UoD. and t.o plirifs.mMl!tary pl"otee '191 ~galnst the trampling UrtO'fiI. tWa rmght~Bollshe¥'Ia m. penemmg into tl:!.e midst of thf! oppre.s,ead nations, it raise's them up 9I:ainst tMll" SpprE.8Bors: H ties up their B tl'Y.ggle w Ub. the struggle of the pVDle'tariat blthe, oapita! is t cou.ntrles:; it Instructs. the opprelll,se d Cntnes!e ~ HindUs {I'i' Ambs in the a l't ol tnsn rreeUou and It tIlS au mes fun NSpmlSU:nUty:IIOl" tD.l!e work In thefa.ce of the Civilised executioners. Here only doos BoisllevIsm begmt that iSt revoluth:lDary marxlsfil l:n aetton." (47)


We RC'cept t!he thoryof permanent revolutten withrespecrt to the stngglle 5go.l-· nat h:o~riBli5tn in iJlaLand. (48) Thenlltiongl rei\o·c~.utiont ha.ving q. Us 2im the untUc'aU.c.n un independence of ! rel and, ~B in thee 9 fe r IDS 11 OOU rgeoi9 - de moe 1'atte reve LuUon or ~ l'~t bel:', ita co mp let:i.on. In pure ly Io rmalte-r m.a the fnaturlll' lertd:e Hi btp IS b~uld have been the Iris h 00u rgeOfBt~.. But: Britts h i IDp6 rlalii.s m. by ~eunev:eD davel.opmat It inrposed llpOll. Irabm.d, d!vid.qd the Oo!J!rgeoiBieand Incorpora..ted fhs northam aeetton in the nineteenth ce:rrl'ury. It also .J.n.,~O!'pOll'a.-

- 22-

ted the southern bou.rgeoiBie Rnd 'In the twen.tietb century the leaderahlp of the' naUonal revolution. feU tow'} all[liI.nce of the pettt-boul'fteloisH~ ra.nd the wDl'ldng c'lasl, 01 which the msmg of 1916 and the guel'illll wa.r of 1918-'21 were the

chief eXprB99ion. !Jut the v. (Irking OlUS,B after ths de~:t~ of Connon, welllle unable to extend, or even tOl lliIaif,i'tatn~ Ita role In tbe l'ev""'lll~ion. T.lle British were able, In 1921, to dhltate therr settlement O'f the nattonal queBt1on~ wtth the Iririh 00lU'geoisie HquidaUng the dall'JJUl.cl for a repUblic and agrsf!ling to THtHue Rule, ... tha

~ Free state' within the orbU. ·of Br! tis h i IDpE: rtalts til ~ nefo l" mta ~ eff~cttve 1 y s uhordb~a.ted the worldng class movement tothe oo'Urgeois1a, (49) B_ut the petJtbou.rgeaieI"epubUcans fought on. ,RB during the Clvil War !}i'~h6 'eady 192Q1's" and aoottlliats ,q,ndworking class mllttants were t!:1'JIi!! Larg~ly fO'l'Iced to work witllin the oo::licaUy peUt-bourgeQim'ep:tbUc,a.n moveme]]jt~the iR.ll..

The UtA hos ~Ot' flUy yeSlrs provided trbe leadatship (If the fO'I'C'99 'of I'eBtstelice bJ Brmtdl1 mpert!lUsm Ilndi to the col hi horating:' flcurgeo[sle. By.t~ as mfght be expeete d" :I. ts It ttitude to 'the bt)l!UgEl olB Ie haa been J ne one ietent and vae iUat'mg. S;O,W been its stant e\'YUh. regard ~.Q t:be 'NO rking e las 9.

In "the epoch of ImpariUe.m only 9. national revolutten which takes up the tasks,

of the soetal revotutton can release the hold 01 Britain over Irelaud, Obviously neither the petit~bourge,oflElie ,as a clas~, DOl' the IRA liS a poE1iUcl& expresaion O'f It lean do th19. The !!I'U'cceS9 'of fhenauond st1"1.lggLe requires the leaders.Mp of theworki:ng (d.aIll9~ and the working cb.ls.s to leed .requiooB an independent l'avQ~t~UonRl'y lJOCiaUBt pa,rty. Eut thb'l is nM to Bay that the nationd question is a.n irN1Elvance~ It d:l:vers:totl f:rotn the llI.imple- elass BU"Uggle" Indeed It ie w~ttlin ,the nationa.l struggle that the wOl'ldllR' class must achieve le!!derihi!.p. '1'heperrnanent l"1(livoluUon ie not a. lea.p by tba proletariat over the I!llti(lt:udrevolutiQ1:l~ l:rl:.lt'the reeens true tion of the no. lhnl Qnde r the Ieade rsMp of the prele tarla: ~ It ls, wbat TrotBky ooscribes as tb.EFgrow!ng over of the democratto revolution. into the seetalts t rBVO 1 uUon" ~ (50)


T'he .!l!biUty of :IS to expittin away the tncon!,Jil!lts:t~cies in Ua Vlll:r!OUI9 statem lltsi

on Ireland atemEI to some' extent froID the confu_slcm tntha minds, of many comrades with regardB to' the' protestant WOI'lrors of Ulstel". What is the nature 0" tile :relaUoDsnip ru-t}l8 protesmnt wo""king class to o:r,angels tDlUlduniillniB ilnt and what is the pos91bHUr of working elaas unity for the: ,overtbrow of eapttaltsm and hnps riaUSll1 l'

ThoB,e who, oogin by '~ook[ng ,at the supposed economic mUitancyo( the

protestant wcrkers (itself problommatte, as has been shown recently with the role of Q'rnIlgeis m in the Htlrla:nd and Wolff dispute), and who then wonder why this mUital1Jcy has no,t led '~o sooid~st COO!H:tounneBB~ or those whe think that mor-e m.Hltan.cy would Ull~te' Pl'ooostruJt a.Dd cathoHe workerii'! and ova.rcome pt'ej:udfce - such cotnI'ttdefi are the vicU ms of eeonotnla tn, TbByIgnor6 thel quest ... ion of the sta.te. It is lnsufficiant ,91mply to point to hiBtor1cal exaillplaa of

united action such u that led by I",8.l'kjn :;'1Iefore the Fh'9f: World W!:I.\ Oil,' the unemployed campa.tgmls of the 1930 's , PerD11l:tl~1mt.. Uh!ty for th9 catholic and ptrotestant wo'ners CiW 'oniy 'be unity On 3D Illltt~lrnpBriaUGt basis ~ UfIDtted eOfnl~ ,om1o atr:u.g gle tbuugn necessary can and will be, 9.e it bas been in Ute past~

- .23 -

terminated ""tf.th renewed sectarian pogrnrua if it is !lChlevorI 1011 the basls of "'lgnoring the dUfet'encea'~. T~18 relaUonsMp of ~he prctestent worHng ciss,E! to the state Ie; unique., 'Th~1!I w!!!.s true with l'Iega.rd the wt.ole of Ire\;llnd before !if{c me ~ule" lia tb.e Nodh - it became mOTe OQncentr.e.ted and effBcUve after 1.921.

"'he Northern staw of' 1921 ereated a united bloc of OhlSB forces; Bmall fat."mera~ ~andh.l"rdBt worke ra and c9pltallats welded togetbe1" sor:~aUy~ poUUcaUy and ruHgjO'll8ly in the Orange Order. 'l'he rn'otei'jil'tant 'Worker was tied to the' state not only bJt idealogy but by nl'll.t.edal privHege also. His rela.tiofl.8hifp to his eatholfe feU owWOM 1'8 was tha t of ~ lauou r a r18 too ra t. If e bn d ft 1'8 tea n On jobs and hou B~ng ~ be W,1li.S tbe l!:lSt to' r:u~ed En errtigI"Bte. It 121 '10 matter- that the p1"Oteat:a.nf worker truly earn 1~9m than hIlS BdUsh cO'lmOOr"'pE!.!"'tj that he is wo~e Hke~y to i.1ve tu I:. alum. Rela.thla t,o the Gilitnoltc W'O'I'keF~ th~ protestant enjcus ]e.alo1!lsly-guarded prtvlLeg.eB; prlvne,~a which ,come through membership,o.f the untonlat bloc, Uta ora.nge ardeJl'. prfvileg~s wbleh bav8 to. t'il maletatued by wholesale gerrynnlnder.by

d'enLaJ of denu:u:::raUc rtghts to the ml.no.rlty. by tmHnberahip ·of state plu"a-mi.Htary fnrees, and by ume.~;R~u armed bl~ck oondt'l9ds:, by pertcdre pograDlS. And aU this !uulto !Je' justified bya MElml-raciat ideology which onmes nea l' to a colon-type eonsci01UU'.l~i!IS'. It Is thEe 'Whicb. bUB delude@ come eomrades into conalderlngthe protestants, as a I::leparate 'l:]aUon~

Wlthin this, arUfk:IBll atate, with protest-ant wor:kel'!l tied strucNrally into ita rultag 'p.B!rty~ no ,ei9BB unify eculd be ;~hle'\l€ld+ Conn,oUy .recoglD:iaed that EI ueb a situation would be R, godsend to botllthe Orl!llgf;! and green bou.rgeoisie, ,~natbat in both states tbe worlee r! B ro ove ment won Id be c:r:l ppled •

An y ~eB,t B taeee by the co tho 1 tea bae: met wUh bru ta:1rep res is 1: on 0 '1"6 r t1w, l QS t 5,0 years,. The ehil lUgb.t.B movementappealed baskally for I!f'ne tnan, one job~1. Ta.~enw:iltbln 'the (l'ooood of' tneNorthem state, this meant unemployment for IOD'lGI p~otestanf:9~ at! attack: on their prlvilt'!,geB W'hicb~ po.«Jr as they were, were ~t:tej}:' than nothing ~ Likewf.sElt the Civil IUghb.! call for t10fi~ man, one vote" meant in eertatn areM loss of control of the counetls ~ and of the ,j.ob and hQl.l.sing alleeaden that went wtth it. Tilougb. the leaders andm.any of the pal!."'Uetpants of theeJvil r~ghts ,struggle 'failed to ratse the questi!.on of the No'rthern state, these atmple demands did !!M) for the Pl'totsswts. Tbey brought. th.~ lliO\JemGnt {nto immediate o'onfl.ict

wiU'r the state foree9 011 the t'egime~ the Rue ~ with the legal paro.-nl.lUtary aquads of the 'B~ Specla~.9t and with the pFoteStl.nt terTOl" O~o.n:lsB.uons, tile UVF etc.

The so-entled pl'"Otesmnt ha.(lf,das,b ~6 produeed net hy the bombs or i SEl darlan! III ttl. ~ (If the IRA, but by every attempt of the DlltlCmaUst mtnorHy to alter the IlI,ta'tUI,


Now It 19 true that ,the Dr ~ tis h ha ve the a.t 111 of a 1m1 ted bon l'geoillil trelsnd o· Tn'81r c.h{ls(!!n method was f<lll" the Unionist leaders ~aduany t,o l'efCH:m Stormont and the Northern state lout of existence. But I1.11Y mo.' e by the caUlQHcs produaefJ ]Jrotelltant retaliation. The Brttl.ah may have wanted to get rid of Stormunt1 but they dId not want It de 9 tl"oyedby the nB.UOfiB lis t popu Iatton .

Neverlhel,ess~fhe miUtary and civil realstance of the catholtcs and the, Protestant reaction made hnpossihle the task of cal't)"ingor.l BdUah rule 1.;u;; ,~ld way tb.rou:gh StJQl"!nont. The Hr"itieh were fOl'(Jed t.o inuiodace direct role in a way and at 8( Ume wbich hflB:med ~he ClMltradtcHot! between them and unIonism. a.nd which fractured

- 24 -

the unionist class alltance, The BTitiElh were forcedt:o I rat:l.onlt'liee' In thsmost difficult of circumstances. ThaiI' iiiul"v;val Is a tribute not I~V' much to the ir strength Q8 to the litn[taUons of~he repu.bUcn.n.a p.lirtic!.llady with regard to the South. Simply '00 po~nt Gut tba.t British i mp.erlalia m stJH rules, as did comrade Ha.rr.mln in his article at the Hme, hi banal. 'fo point out that TtM alums sttn remain I and hotly deny

that ,Bllythin:g s~,gnifj.cant had happened wao an Rot of historical bUndl1eUB of the

first (jlrder. The overthrow of Stromont1' liB the result of ~ lmaa,a movement invohed in armed conflict wltbmsi'lrlive BrIttsn fomes which were; do1nf their utmos,t to preserve it1 when. too Brittan. ruling class bad, as they sun have, no Yiabl~ a~ter-native' O'f any stabiUty with which to replace It y ,liM thlB llot a vIctory though. nm:

tlte violo1'y7 -


Tids success testifies to, the cOl'recmessof the Pro'ViaionaLs In nwklng the amash ... ing of Stormont their objeot of struggle,tesUnes 00 the necessity aad fundamental oorreotness .of the miUtary campaign. The destru.cUon of stormont and its pl'ivlleg-e8; and the clear rnallsaUo n tbatthare lei no Wti1Y back, Is a p.re:reqtllilsite for :re,al class unity in tho North. Protea,tan:t workers wUl.finaUy unIte ",1th CathoUo only when they take up an 'antil-impenaUat postttnn, The'lr distrust of t'ha Britillh fO:fCeg, and ho,stility to direct rule i~ an irupol't.ant blow to tbetr litmion:ls w'!, kit it is atpres,ent offselt by rabid determination to p,r0eerve the ascendancy ~ No retreat or concession tric the lmperlaUet forces by the l'l.B.tionaUs't will belp woo the prate et~ anbJ. No posing' of uq,Uy L.I1 purely econo mte oo;'rms by 9,00 IAUs te wnt by-pM It U:U!!I quesUonaf m1ion~gttl.. The more resd~ute the struggle against imparlaUsmt m)rth and south, the more "ha11 the pl'oieBta.nts he w nu:.Hted by th~ ,contr'8.d'1o'tfi,oruJ of

tbei.r position. !nde,ed paradoxical thou.gh tt nmy seem. the clash wRit Britisb poUcy e:ngendered by Its ICOOC6osto-nal to the catholics (te. th.e abolition of stormont)

hos resulted In Protestant workers undergoing a. profound d!i!1illuskmment with ~ayer after m}'el' of ·th.eir loyalist lead ers. At the moment this takas; fha fO'I'm

of moreand more desperate (and reactionary utopte.o - an tndependant U1ster~

It bRs led them Intel a mass confrontatlon wIth Bl'iU.all ~tllte, pO\\lsr - tbe 1974 genel'al strike. Though tbeobjlects of th-e strfk:e were rallCUonary 00 the core and many of its methoda sectarian. and ant1~\\'tOl'k:.Ing class, navertbelees, they demon ... strate,d to, the protestant workers tha power they had SA workers, It is these sort of co,ntl'adtctions that 001y a workers party'co'tumittadi to real worker's councUs~ , to real non-sectanan (se.cula.r) workers power on both. sides of the border. The aoonee 'the work.tng etass in the South brln,g.s ita strength into the struggle againot imp9'iria1ism, the sconer win proteel tant worl'""e'rs see the uaeless ness of further reslsUmce. The Bonner the working class in. the South. 'opens up a life-l1Jld~death a,trugg:Le with the Gree.n bourgeoisie. the SO-Oller will proteo8ltallt workers gee thot they b.a ve noth.tng to felar. The more ravel u tiobary soclaU 8 t ideas and 0 rganiaatIon gain in the "cs.thol1cH wOl"iun:a! movement, north and scutb, the more wIn protestant worMt's be drawn for the explanation and way out of tbelr pred1.cS!menjt~

Tilts is in no' way to deny the ~ mportance of the unity of the working clasa, But the goal of unity ,cannot be used as an obstacle to 9. reaoluta pursuanee of the anU-imperialltst st.l'uggle .. which in the sbort term, wnt only still more Incense the fl~otestants. To see the' one as an ohstaele to the othel.' is to y told to l'efo,rmism. The Offichil.hl' opportunistic wooIng of the leaderebip or the unA and other blac:kaobuncNd orga,n.tEJlltione: floW's from thl~pera,pe.ct:l.va~ (51)

ObjecUvely the dialectic of areaolute anU-1m_peri.alist struggle will further f1r&ctu.re p 1"~tea.ta.nt C onsc ioua:nes B, preyentillg Oipp.f;ntuni tiers fa l" the winnIng a way

y lele




a 0..-


- 25 -

from ~oyaUsm of ma.ny of these workers. But to rea1:iseth1s recprlrea a wOl'ktng classp.ruriy whicb not on~f gaL"U:1 a fOOt;:10ld in tM day-to-ea; 'batUss 011 wages, and e'o»iltioM, bu.t also take'li the lead m t'h.e struggle s.gai.nst imperieUem..

hi Ireland as elBewh-e r6 ~ u1l'ohe ru6nt m :"h~ Be eno mle s t;rngg lie c annat be ,aeen as Belf -Buff~c enr, As Lenin pain ted au t:

nOnly th~' late" a.nd Wllntrurnood EC0110MiBU! believed that tbe It~Ioga.n of a workers ~ partyti Rl"e fssued only for" work~rs ~ No, these a!ogEl.ll5I are bSiued for the whole of the lnoourlng papl:DllB.t:l.on. for tho enUre peoplet' ~ (52}

En Ireland where the socW revotutfoi.1li C!V1 triumph ofllyaa too triumph of the national B,tNggle against imper:!:a.UB m~ mota ru~tba pui down w.b1ch unify these stNg'!gles: from the outset~ The !.!lbaence of the Southern Inab. worldr!g .OmS9 frn·m t.he na.t1onat struggle B1noe the early ~2'ij 's (not of courae u tndlvlduats)J the s,Yilla.c' aUrlun whlch ul3.rk.ad theorlgm of tha working cluB U9, an ol'gMlsad m.0V6~ W&1!!It.iB as dlUJigerOllS for revol!1;1t1onGrie~ in Iretand as aoouotion. ioml pettyoourgeloa rep.ubUcwdam~

T'ffi1eprovfsionlll U1Aand tWli,e battle they truL va waged <liver tbe last few ye9:rsB:re taeti. mony to the C(i1.nt:lnuedv1 mU ty of the lris,h national move' ment. Though th'is ban ~ :tn t~he bas t two centruiea t puaedthrough ftll'iou stages and CD mblnaUoDlll of clasR inte':feBbJ t the battle!il, 011 the ,streB ta of Belfast; themos t inMIlBe and bloody confUd wU.h British. troops ,.ince 1916 - 21" tcl!!lsttfy that t.he Irish people arc ,IntO fgelth~mQelvea to. be ,enalav8dby Britisb Imper1.aliam~

,The P~oviBi.onalB inherit from tha movements which preceded them (t~e Fenlang~ the Irian HepubUcsn B:rotherbood~ the poaf-treaty iDA) tbe' two most 6nd\lr-lng

B trands of u'publtcMJ'B m: the duty of Irls hmanto tal{e :up arm!! aga~mlt the> c;cctJpying PQ,wer'.ancl ,s.bstantJo.D from. pa,rUament&ry ,activity v.hlch lnvo-hres recogniUon af'the division of Ireland. (53) Thotr irred:utdble "N"ubH,c8!D~ demand is thern~o.re tit united 1r:-9hmd rne of Brittsh Slaw to reO's. In thi01B&MO 'the i r basIc poUticol p6si.UQ.Ji does not t:ran_scood a wurgeo,is-demoo Tl.ttc goal. Bull the abstract application ·of defhlolttoDB from a. poUUcal dictionary CUi only obebure the tsaue ..

From the 187 Os ollw&rds~ the BrfUsh and I !'is 11 bo-urgeoie;l JB ha we Baen the, a:llJI;Wf!l' to the Irisn ,question m Ii poUUasUy wdepends'llt statel on boorgaola-demoonUe UeBEl, and With the forces of' BriUsh Occu.pation .removed. This lay bebJnd the GLlI.clatonian HODle Rule o~r81a of the U7Da. and 'a08~ the simIlar orises pre- 19lt, Ut8 aborted settlement of 1921 and th.e manoel1ve:dnga of t be . ea.rly ad

mtd .. 1980s.

T'hep:robtem hasileen te keep the pTOne91E1: ,at such a te'mpo !l8 to ensure thattbe Mrtlh peop~e, warbH: and petty-bourgeois1e~ wok DQ Independent lnlat1ve~, o:r

cO!il:ld be sucee ssfully cnudmd were they i;{'.1 do so. mltioll,y the Bntish runE! t fear-

ed an agm riM riBiDg t, but with the gro'Wth of the Iris b. pl'Oletarla't~ thefea:r of a works la, I l'U teg neees aitated ·the fDa", l'i ng and rna tnt:mJa.nC6 gf the ,~H;!:Jpara te orange C1,188 bloc ht the North. Pcpulel' t"8p1il.bUOM f'or,o;ooe ClU'ffiot he R110wed to gain the lntUa:t.l.veLn the iElJkugrgle :[01' UDJ.ty and todependence because the re is eve ry 1i:ke 111.h:oOO.~ t1m.t. '911& th8se forces wnle&B be d Jtbe naUonalrevol u"tion will Deco m per~ maee nt - thB:t the sefarc-e iii wIll challenge. the I ~e r'iU!st SOblti.OD of a formally

- 28-

inpepelldent~ united oo1l1rgeoie Irelond. 5cof.l!clmic:utly sUbordinate to Brit lah capt tal ism.

BMt although tbil!!. hi, in thB [EUlI·t a'llJllyail!l .. a: creatton of Erl.ti~h lmpedaUsru

[or use &gains t popu 1& r re pubUcScmis. m ~ tbe Or.a.nge forees ba ve on. !lI1 number ·or ·occuions blocked the i mper'l8 Its t sol uUDn w Iththe I r oppos i UQD to ailY '(nove ag'!lUul't the Northern state. The British. BtrSl'tegtc goal. has COllLstantly tenclt3d to· come into vlalent con:tradlctioD. with BriUsn tactics.

The lrl19.b oourgeo'llBie (G.re.a.!!l~ i~ bash::aUy content bot.h wlthtm Brlti~b gwiad w~tJ1 the ·essentials of Bri.tlBh policy ill that diNclion ~. no popular 1nlaUve. The two bouqeo19: parUcsin.the South and Uw SDl,P in the North play t~e J'ate 0·£ pI'6gentlng national aspirations in. this sense alone.

The Prov1siondg'prog:ra.mme ~A New IrelMd'.~ is a cta8s1ca:~lf petty-oourg;eo.lB deeu ment. AU taUct such utile EMG t B of :ita de mandB a.!!Itrruulti()QRl lis :absolutel no,wl'I,nae ~ De 'm.'1l11da ca.~~tbe evaluated c_ut of the ·oontext of a. pl'ogm mruell:l1rl1

. .

oftlw wa.y In which it 19 to be uBed",mlre NuB' caUs fol:' natiooeUsa.t1on oftb~ r,ei!!!ou'rce~ of the (lOl.mtl'y~for dec·ent.raJIJaat1on of poUtic.al gov!@'mment into the foo.1' h:!:awlwtc provmce8~ each of wbi·ch would MV1E! its awn IDa.n. F'llrtluu: U dOIruli~d!

~.e brea kitl-l up of fh@ IBrger estates and ·the Bxtension of the eo- o:pe ra.UV6i. The pr<!lgnmme Is petty ooQrgeoleDecauae it attempts to put the clook back end

CNl81te an. irebuu:1 :for the small farmer and tbe small businessman. And~ what fa morel llone o·f thG. Provisiona.18· leaders take it atall seriQus.});, in the h.emRlld now. Since th~ mis e l'~ hie fan~.re of f: he a.tte mpt to ut up .l!l.P3se mbliea tn ul 900.1' BtU;! CQIm~'t~ tb.eprogmmm.ebaa been reiegatedto the status of id~ologica1 banage~


Bdttbe poUUcs (If the Proviijk'lna18~ thwgh far from 9oclali9t~ differ "In 'E!ssenUsls

fromth.ose of th.e bcmrgeofB partlea, 1'haya:mprepa.redm expel the Britiah. from 11·eb.nd. by 8.l"madforee. and !It th,e head of tb.a peopl€!~ These characteristics define the,m aSB dynamic BnH-lrnpei'IaUat foree, aDd they or the groups. BIte tnem win Nm21:o BI!iI.ch a! for-(l.6 unttl they iil'>e' l'sp.h.wed in the. lea.deMtdp of th1e struggle by a Wei rkmg ems:e rev olu.Uonary pr.rty. PaU UC9 like narul'eabho rs a vacuu m.

The poUUcai limitations of the provLaiona19 .are rooljlad lntheir inability fr~m the, etam:1pomt ofpeUy- bourgeots bRUonalll!1 tn to Bee thepa:l'tlcuhlr eDOl'I om ~~ n atUl tie of the explo!UaUon of·Ir.el.aud. a:ndtne claaa llIa'NN'I ·of tile forces emgag~d In tllle naUooal 9tl'Ule:~e. Let us tai{e the t~ features ·ofropubUcanls m wbich sa t it apal1: frO' n) the Irtsb ~e(dsie and give it ill B.1Iti- hnpel'laUet dyne.ntlo::th61 tee, oi'arms .~ft:!net the OOC'UJII}tlng pow~r t and the abstention from. -the ufiortrullboure:eolB~ politicsti•

The latlk ,of a. ole.arWlders.mndtng of the ba9:mof I.mperlalist exploitation of IN~

Land le.ada toihe taking on by the miUtary s·truggle of'the· MIs o.f snllll-CODBUI.m-

_ strategy lu.tea.d ·of a tS!cUc. The British: are OpPl'lf!SIOl'8 a/imply 'b!ec&uel they

h:a ve any army in 11'Ieland - just. as the y ha we bad f'o1' 800 yel11"8 ~ et I(J. ~ Tilla iJ!'llIvE!S

tim. upoUt.tcal wingl' oI tbe move went with an essentially srtodiary flmciion. indeed

a.n.y encroachment ·of the rpoHtlotatl.91 on the miilluU'y Is sha.rpty rebu:Ued. T,he a:batenthm. frompa,I'Uamebml'y pOUtics; s:hnply 'teo:vee the prov1B:hmals at the

:mol'cy of lwUl"g80bJ pa,rl is. menmdans whel! nCl:!l-·mm ta ry manoeu vring is neeeas ~

tery. Sinoe they have :0.0 9·octal1St ~rspecti.vei the· '~Jlo.Ellbal. wing!~ tenda to· bnnkeraflerlihe llllsb. paBturee of pa:rihl.muta.rlanJsmJ whether qUfls'i sectal-deme-

cmttc ·01' pIaU! bmu'g€lQ!s~ But compromise. beY·Md 9. certe1n point leads. to a

s.pln~ .. RB: In ~fl9and u bas been il!ii!l"l'owly s.voo.ded wUhin the Prov:i!louQ.ls; 00 eeeastons ailinee.

tala )m

~ ...

~m m1e


re ot the mal

:1.1. the ~aiDst

!J l ~ .' :re ... EI,um-

they )avee ~iCleed b.e

! ~e8Sumkno,a


- 27 ,_

Failure to see the claas nature of the rorces in the Irish national struggle leads the Provisiol1alB to see the Green hourgeolBiela betrayals in moral termB, leads th.elll therefore to maitl'tatn relatione witb those n,ght-wing p llt;1c~a.r1B who a.re l!pn.trio,tic~E ~ It leads the m to ignere and even to, oppose specJfioaUy workil:'lg-chlsB methods of struggleJ stl'1m. ooeupattone, etc. Mass involvement is not ignored b~r the provlsiona.lst but is seen as auxlla:ry to the mlUtary st!llggle and often as passive • support , for the InA~ (54) At certain per;l.odB~ often quite protracted. mUita.ry prlorUles d.o and mus.t mke overall p:rl:ortty~ With 20,000 oc,cuPJ'ng troops lifjd mOOns!V€! terrortsatton of the natiooalist populattou, O~19 for" mB.ElB aetson" can be -ltopian .. Bllt the political helplessn~lnl of the Provlaionals drives them to mJ.lttary a.CtiOllB which are pcB leal diBaBl:ers. The 25 bombs 11'1 the centre of Belfust on '!Bloody Frlilartr meant {lU'I a :reply to ,Vh1te1.1.w's refusal

.to talk, simply opened the way for Operation Motorwan and stunned and deluora.l. ilil.ed the mflSB9S. (5.5) Coming after an attempt to compromise with the Brittsht thare revealed the hvin poles of the Prov1S;iona.1B activitiea~ In a crisis they wIll show utter disregard for the [ll8.SS'8S, either ~r eornpremtse or'by aets of indlscrlm:lMm terror. This :is when tberh:'poUUca and the situation bring 'Chem to iloU.te fmpass,e. But it dOOB not explain their relattomJh1pto the masses, AI!! is t~8tffied by the way in whicH 'this, relatioD3hlp aun1vEl!l the shooks.

The Ea.ster demonst,r-aUonSi each yeBI' bring tnM:ly tho.usands out behind the ban- 9]'8 of the Provtaiomila,. The conttnued support for the gueriit1a sU."tlggle allows {he link unbroken ~ the guertlla flghtan and eheareas from which they opamte, Fl"Om the introduction of interment to the aboUUon of gtormont they stood at. the head of a mass, campafgn~ giving mutter'Y COllar to the rents and rates strlke, keeph'lg

the is taw fo roes p~tl l)@d down by the .6 niping' and bu n1 bkJig OR rnpalgn, Tbe t r~ alogan nSDlaah stormont" l--epregented & campajgn of the nattenaltat population which went beyondtbe quesHnn of internment. In thia pet'iod there was a. positive offens,he on the ,b:;or.oUthiG Orange abltfl. The fall of Stormont .md the fracture of Union.i9 m were the direct rseul t of their ran Hary activity buiisBQlubly Unl[ecl to mass Flesi9: tall 00 • This was 8, partly successful offen! ~\'e struggle.

Since the faU of stormont the political f!riBle has deepened fo·r the Pl"Iovlsionahl. T'he mtli'tary struggle was continued with no clear idea of Us geal, other tban

the ftrl'd e1!;;pulsfon of the, 'troOp9~ or the ~ope that the BrJUl;\lh would Bue fOl'peacc. and agree to B date for wtthdrawal , The Provisionals, aga.1nJeven in the face' of' severe repression by the southern government under both Lynch and COliIgl'fl\l(it :refused to mobilise in .tbo SOuth. MRcatiofan's arrest. and 'htl'nger strike produced the !frat masa stirrings tn the South. :.!iftce the burning of the Br1tiElh Emooasy -

the ProviI:Jfonll'is sabotaged this movement. (5'6) AU the worat featuNs of their pelttieshave devaloped apace stnoe tbe abolttton of Stormont. They have even abandoned the dell1tU!I) for the immediate withdrawa.l in favour 'of a phased wU'Il.dmwal or an announcement by the British gO'VEIl'nment of a date some years. henea when they wiU withdraw. All this nrnker!l ,cleat" tho cryIng need for ,I revolutionary workers' pa rt.y ~ to raiae the banns l' of a wo rkers I repu bltc l 00 win the organis ed Il'ieb workers foll" the ant'i:-iP'par:ta.list strulIgl,e and to draw into its ranks the de ... voted rank-and-illc of the Ptovf.sionds (end Officials) •. SUch a force alona can

take the Btru,ggte forward to final vic ;01'y. Nev.a rthties,B a defe.st forth6 Provtsio.nale weuld be a terrible defeA.! for the trtsh revolutton, It would greatly strengthen and stabntle the Irish bourg0801ste and the, !British ruUng class. At the moment, the Provistmuds remain the In< jar active obstacle to a solutton ia110Ul',lIl.ble

- 29 ~

'EO Brmsh lmperlaUs m.

Given all thtB~ wJly Hum cannot the Pl'OVl8icJlllb~ simply be writie.n off a9 areact~ona:ry petty-hourge.aia formI3iUon" Wh3' mustw8 continue to giva them oar uneen» dU'loh!9.1 eupp<il:rt~ and why (n thhl' cou:nbJ must our cdUo:l:s tn be ~lea:rly _Bub(l'l'-

s!_ln.am to .tl1its 9Uppo:rl? _

To 1eaignliloo' a movementr'petty-bQurg:8nlat~ is not to dech.!.R It reactionary except in 'the moet a.ootm.et gense~ Its class gods may of1l9n bc're2c:Uooary~ they may Bleekto rerum to tbe cO~d~tioM of ea.r1y eapttaltsm .• But: Ua ccmfUctwith im~ !H'ria U,s m die kltes our tmeed W ,9Uppori i t, The DatkmaUe ts 'Of 1918. Pearce;md the the resttwllIre if anytMng evenmere d(nnmated! by a myaUod reUg1.ouB ulop:l<lfi-

i8 m toon are the te' publteans of today. But Lenin was able, to ,say: '

rTo irua.gtne tha.t seetal ,revolutloo hI {~o!llcetvab~ewUhwt Nvolts by small nations bl the eolonleo and in Ewrop,clt without reVQluUonl!:I'Y outbursts by a seetion of the petty OOu.rgeoll,le wit" ;aU Us p:rel1l,dices ••• to imagine all 't'l!!1 to w re pudLate. ,,:ocla 1 .revolution! 'f (57).


, llow ean we (NJr,rect IOU rIme (On Ireland? qo~ can we amend our past 8~r(;) m ?

HOiW ean weunde rmke s e riOIlS revo<i:u:tioQa 1'y wOl'k on the question fn the B,ri.t!i8b working ClUB? We wiU outline here a. p08iUaD which we will u'gue' for within the orgnniSBUoo+ The fU,t suggests we take up tm lririb question 8·0 &9,00 00 able torecruM:. bish workemrnto the organisation. lVe want! of ceurse, 00 ree nii:t Iris l:I workers. This cann@t howe ver de ter mine the Mnu."El of the work we dlt~ Sec Olullyl com adss argue that we should raLise ~ba question. of INland so msh~ snow the danger'1iI ahead f<or British work.e;r;fJ, Lots of Msty tabs m tnrtureand bmtrulify In Ir,aland on the part Qf the Bl'iUah ruUng elasa wiU aid OIl!' propagands.here. Thi9, pus i tton bas le d to a cove rage of Ire i andIn SociI Us t Worker that bas effectively dodged the major iDoues raised for as ~cng illS possible .•

In btuiding; IS we are 9,eeklng to bu.ild a revolutiona.ry ~nternn.tlonaUet leadership In the British working elaae , Streh a leadership needs to 00 uncompromising tn its Slnti-l1llpel"laUa 1I1~ Our b1.sh wnrk, then, must be central w tblata9k~ In O'Ul" ag:l<tati<mand propaga.:nd'a we 3':Iyst bike up aleady and resolu.tely our support fol' tboBe 'UghUng ~mperlaUBDh We must take lEI. ciear pas::l.Uonfor the defiWI..t

of BriUab :foree,s. iiDI~eland. We tllust f?oognfsetb1lt the .natland struggle waged in th.e north by the forces Io!' the Prov19~onallRA fa. a war.a.lbett Ii, RU61'i~Ua:

'War. 3gainst B 1":1. tis b. t 111pf! :rill It! m and Utat wea re fo r the defeat of 1 the Brit!! 9 h £omesc

For the IRA - Against ttla BFlUs,h A nl!J.y '. BrlU s h T roo pB Out of Ireland •

:seU ... (leterulinatlOll for the whole of the Irion peorJl,e~ Down 'IN1tb the secmtla:n Northern. gtate~

Thea e demanda eu m llpthe b~9ic'ma ks tlHs. t face 'us a n:l.O'ngat Hri.Us h work.em :blb;ulhitq the l'evolu.titOn8.l'y pa rtf. OUr WIOI'k must go furtMr howeve r t, than merely arguing fOlr the ,co'rreet .B,loga:nB. a.nd pas UlI.one. Ins ida [5 d~a CUB sten

and educa.tion 011 lre19l'!1cl hna been hopeleaslyl!legleotad~ T'Ms must '00 rectified.

- 29-

It hJ ~.ppaUlng that '\¥€I take up the issue only f:!.B immediate issues I1no events m. Ireland force us to, Too organisatlon bas produced no pamph et on Ireland except a short history. The result is a tnembernbip l&rgely unaware of the tssues and tb.air importanoe.

As wen as ha-ving our own C01':rect snU-imperia.tiat posiUon and ensurtng CHSC1"l.aaton of the Issues tnstde the Ol"g:l!u'll8a.tl00. there is another crucial dimension

to our work. WE must fight to butld a bt'09U antt-chauvtntaa move ment In BrH:B.tn~ SUoh a movement could be. of major poUticltl importance in the crtsts ahent::L Around the two slogans of;l1'J,"OOpS Ollt Now~ and 'Self":Determtna.t1on For The Irisb People", we must work with those sections of the Labour Pru:iy and also

the Corumun':lel P!!rty. who will take up those demands. The history o( our own work shows tbat this mus'!; be a. nationailniUat1ve. It is not suffioient to ask all branches, to hold meetings on thequeatten, We must work to buHd the Troops

Out M.ov,ame:nt aLB 8. DRtfoo.al mov~nnent in tbe working elasa, (58) EverybrlUlcb must betnvetved in that work. T,o build a brIdge between the socinUst left and the antt-chauvintat tendena;_ in the working Qh"8a~ IS must uUltse its J!nduetrial

, . '

st..l"Elngth to tbe fuU. Our wbrk to support the Socialist Workel'8 Movement m.ust

be Btrengthened~ We must do this in. a series of wayB~ In Britain we must stresa the need for an independent working cIs.as party and on til.s need fe·, the Irish wo.tkers to taka the lead in the fight s.,gaillBt imperiolis m in the North and So:uth. We must stres' the, need to' link the struggl.es agaInst the Irfsb. OOSI!6E!, (on wagE! reatralnt, :for exa. mp1le) with. Ii struggle against the aUent role to BrUmh 'imperialism. We IDlUlt publtctse and dfacuee the ideas of tho SWM In our organIsation fully and openly. W~ must tncrease our sales of 'ThG workert, at though eomeadeaahould beware of se.elng such aalea as the OOS19 of our work on Ireland, We mus{ c'd.mpatgn for om:- manloo:rehip to read and financimUy support '-T~ Workerl ~

The,ee POSlUOD.B must lxl aoop,ted 908 the Msisof a long;-'rerm orientatlon by the organlsatton, We must ensure that our posItion on Ireland Is cor-rected, We must then proesed to systematically work to ratse the questton of Ireland in the

BrUlfi1b. hl.ooul" movement,


(1) 5torrrm:m.t Was tb.e name ofthePromstltl.tmdomL1!lttooc11P'arUafiien:i:.! [[I the 8m

c cnmt1 @IS. It B alh'.o m 19<21 until 1,972 whenl in theMa.rc b of that year ~ th.e lovernmeat coUllpledi giving war to d~rect lwe.A BtI!f;lceaafui military cllmp:l!'ig:t'lby n,e PlI:"ovisio!lab provoked. a cnei8 In the ruUng-cla9S af!lel' Bloody Stm.ny(Janua.ry 1972} when fourteen wuu'·hIll.ed ch1Uo.llB were murdered by t~e BrUiBh Army du"ring a. prote s l de mons tra.tiOO!ll.,g:ains t in h!!'II men~ • ·PoW'eNurin.l' is e. :reference to, the a,b:!:riE!rl att~mpt ,of eoo Toties to pa1~ch toptber govemment m the Six COUll.tieEl after Uw faU of Stormont. The Horne SeoremrYt WiUfR.ID WMtelawl 8fiD.01Uiced. p,ropal!l.!lI.lstn Juna 1972 t~ hold a o,lMference :SDM:ar,cb 19'73 to study 9. :fiBW formula f(ll' in~gl"y.:Ung the' Cathollo mtddt,a-das B. (v~a the. 8DLP)1 1in1/o fhe B.e·cmrton state ~ In Dec e m be r 1'9'1,'} a pro.ris.toruli agr,aem.en.t was 8MOUfJoed. kno.WJ1 as the SWl.n~ngdRle Communlque= The wu'd'Hme LoyaUsts' .!'esponse to thIs mUd qu.stLan~ng oftbeh' privileges culmtnated m May 197-t- when tll.Gl Ulster WorkcH, General :!!trike b:roo:gbt down 'power--sbarinQ; executt.vol ~ an event whteh saw wtdeapread, and ,o.pen coUUEI~on betweeiB.thel iIlrmy ~OO:R and Protestant .pItl'9.-mlUta nes .

(2) l1"e corTe ctlse 'of tEl rms :tn :relatlan to' Irela.nd ia tu~8t; i tnpOrtant. Thel C It}' Oof Derry." 101" example" was rechristened .·LondonderryI in the eevsntee'l'lt'h oentury to acknowtedlg:e the part pla.yed by the City of London J:nthe pillage

M' that pari of mst~r durlng ,·tOO planmUont. IUbl;ter' is one of the MIltona provinceB of Ire bllld and ee mpr!ses the Six C ount19a af N.. INland in a:ddi Hen to Donegal" CavWl and Monagban. The Qa.'me"UIB~ert was· l'etatfiecl by the Br1ttsh and Loy-aUlBi popuIaUoD. and imB bfI~ome ,11 ,gym"l of the tle,giUD:I1Ii.cyF of tbe comUnued I)coopation oftb.e Six. (}m.mUee. Too OC:OM~onal use of tho term 'Ulswrl is, thereifore~ an error for whioti W.fi!1 elm only apnlogtse.

. .

(3)· The N. F. were, whent:MEJ deeumeet WD.A, written; w.orking in eleae eollabtJ.raUo with the Ulete r Vial ume r Fore e (UVF). Des pite the- .fF9.g menta til em of A.e faSc~Bts after 1917 tile Hnka wito the pSlmm:Uftar1'€le 1mVD been. ma'ffimined I, See i for exa:mp~e ,. H Sea..rchllghtlt t Dec ember un!:! ~(no. t2 0)

(4) The s tog,an t For The iRA ~ Ag~tnBt The :B ri tteb.Al"myt is :no·t the 81. me as ~Victory To The IRA' t. employe d at one tlma by the I MG ~ Only a meve men t led by the working c~aRB can load the naUonal struggle to ~vlctory!.

(5) LeSB w1.ooBpr.ead ~ but ,sun,· ~s ~ble at the ti mG~ wa.e. the BrUish iaOOlll" moveme:nt1e (l;ppo,a1 t:!lon. to British tmp.erlalisdMtB wa.r m h"lalld~ Forexampte~ Sheffield Trades COWlCU IS 'Open Lette:rt (27th Aprll 1920, Bupported the dema:nd f{i!ir IriBh seU~determlna.tioD and. back:edth.e call for strike actloll agnJnst.. m:l.1ttu·y t:fil1lB port BUppUe.S &nd the i mmedlat~ relaeaee of politioal p1"1a.o!l'lle 1'a •.

(8,) F .E,nge.is. 'Tlofbe General. Counol1~ ·:lttiJ. YJly lS72~ In Marx and Engels, tim land !!~jhe [1'19 b. Que! Lioe (MOB'e O,W 19'11 p3 I) 3. )

_. - - -_ .. -,..... -~--,._-.-..~...",..",~.'C I':'r.,. _~~ -;------"""1

(Il} Lenin. HThe Nattonal Programme of too RSDLP" (Q.2l!!otedWorka (C.\') Vol. 19 p".-54')

(10) BWM Is too SociaUst Workers Movemo'ilnt~ the fraternal group of the SW.P. (11), AIL is the AnU-Internment League (1911·g'l3). It was the forerunnel' to the

'if'l'oops Out Movement in Britnm.

(12) For the fun text see Appendbt 1.

(13) 'Socialist Worker', 27th November 1 71- (a) ibid, 12t.h f'ebrual'y liH 2-.

(IS) iMd, 22nd April 1972.

(18) Lenin •. '!Guelilla Warfare!!. CW VQl.ll p, 222.

(rn Mal'X .. !1'Addrcss to the Central Committee of the Communist League 1850H i\i1a..rx/EngeISl' qone£f:t'i_d WorM (CVl) Vol. 10 p, 282.

,(16) The Na.l'odnlckB were RUssian populists.' They argued that Russia. dould aveir capitalism and develop socialism directly through the peasant commune. They were followere of Her.zen and E~lrunin. 'Na.rodnaya Vooiya' (Peoplest Will) was a te l"rorls t offe hoo! Um.t was .rea pons Ible fe-I" the as sas 8 ination of tTs a:r Alexander n in 1679.

(19) L. Trotsky. 'Tbe'il' ~ora18 and OUrs' (New Park 19,68 p • .t6l

(20) T. CUff~ l1'Trotsky on .SubsUtLttioJllsm" in 'Party =!ad Cla.seP (Pluto Pn1S,g p.2B)

(21) !!.Marxism and Terl',orlamu bIllS lntern~ Bulletin I (22) tSocillHst Wlll'ker". 5th Feb.l"'Wlt'y 1972.,

(23) This is a reference to the two bou.rgeois na:t.tOOlftlis t pa rt1es in tile, Twe:utySlx Counties; FIDe Gael and Fianna Fail.

(24) See lSoeial.ist Wo.rker! I' 2'9th June 191-i.

(25, The refereneetotbe 197.2 cease-Ii re is to a true C R rranged· behvl5 en the, Tory Govertl'me.ut and Ute IRA wh.:i.eh lested from 26tlL June until 9th July. It crumbled over tho Lana.doon evtettona, M. Farrell's aeeount recells,

., The crunch came in Lsnadoen; a new mainly Cllt.holic oousil'J.g estate on the frIDge of Ande·rsonlowll. The N. I. Houa ing ExaouUvc allocated some empty bcuaes formerly oceupied by Protestants to Catholic refugees. The UDA objected. IUlC when -the Catholic {luIuUeD tried to reave in the Army stopped them. There weN two days of angry riats in Lenadocn and OJ!. 9th .July 1972 the

'J? :1I,'OV08 opened ft re a,gat n, ! = , :N 9 rl~!!l tI'~!~.!!h-!....Qr..al!l! State '

(Pluto P resa , p, 298)

{26} Lenin .• "Guerilla WllrllU-eI! .. QR. £it P6 214:. (27) ibid; p,.231.

(28) Marx~ To Meye:r and Vogt. 9th ApctllS10. JI4a,rxlEngGis 'seleoted CarreBR~nden£Ot ( M.OSCQW 19'15. p.222)

- 32 -

(29) ib1,di ~

(30) Engels., Letter to KuglsII'li!i.tl,8th NOYelnOOr le67. "Ireland and the Irish Ques th)D. ! ~ 21:1. ~ it p, 145

(3UMa.nc:. 'I'Genenl CouncUto, the Federnl 'CQuncil of Fl'Iench 8wttz,el'liimd,r tn

.M:a rx/E'Dgflls t ArtIc lea on B:rim in ~ p, a 58 •

(32)1 Lentn. c .. VI. VoL 20 P "17-51-


(34) ib~d. p. 35.

(35) ulnin. I~Th8 Boeb!Uut Revolution IDld the IUghts of Na.tiona to Self-Daoorm-

tinathDf.l1I '" C. W. Vol. 22 ~ .143, "

(38) Ibid .p.lS-i.

(37) Le'lJiin. ilTllaDiscueaim of self~Determlnat.i.on SUn1med .. tlJ". c. W. Vol.22


(38) ibid .• p.3:43. (39) ·ibid. iii •. 34.4 ,i' (4['1) ibM. p, 356 .•

(41), For the fun tex.t of these theses 9efl' ~Ilte'~~a.J ReBolut~!llI8 2nd ~~!~!~ afthe F~rnt Fou.r CongI'8i"!,ees i ~ Ink Ltnt'ri8 198 {I. pp, 7 8-81 .•

(42), See L. Trotsky: tlBesu1ts and ProElpects'~ (1906) and IIPerQll'!!lent Relvotutiiltnt't ,(1'9'2'9') til IPe:rmanen~ Revolution I {Pathiflner Pr€s,s!, 1978}

(n,) Tr~takr. ~1'Per'lna:nent lRevoluUonh :lbid~ p.l!H:l~a7 •

("4)L. T!!."otsky. 'FIrst Flv:!._Years of the com.ruun~lnt~r!l~tton~P (New Park,

1973. p •. 153)

(.t6,) Bee !lTh@sest Re!101n~obB. ~ •• em!1 Of! CU. p, f;HL

(4 6}L .• Trotsky.. 1 Firs t Ftve Y'89rs ,oftha C. 1. I fP ell p ~ 153.

{4'1)L.o Trotsky. 11 Ge'rnUlll,y t W1u:l't Ne:x:t?' II. in t!~ ]!ruggle A-.i!11U1;.,.,F;!B c~s...!l l!..Qerm<ll1,Y: I, (Pengurint 1975 .• p, 160-81. )

(48) This se,etio.n W.IS originaUy dlreeted agatnstthe leadership of 1.8'. who ,oo'll1fit~n~posed ·the ecnnomte to the 'na.tiond 8 truggMe and. was intended to ,show ·tbat te task o.fthe wen'king due In B OOtUJI.t:ry where the na.UonaJque,sUiQin 'had mot bee n solved. was to taka ,an Inli0penden.tiy organtaed Leadtng rote wUhlntha nat:l.a.lltal struggle. This oecHcru, therefure, does not pretend flo OOG fun srmtement .of Workers Power's posUiooo on perrruu.lent revolution and Ire ~and •

(49t) Fen' exarnplel tlla Jit'i8~ lAbour Pa.rt's refwul.l~ in 1918, to 9Mrnd thetr own (.l1uld:idaoos agalnatUle netto·oN.slts.

(50) 'rbt i9, doo,t'the geh;llre 'of PQUt'h:m.l power by 'tbB pfoleb;:Jt"ia.t.

(f.H) The OfficIals was thename ~tven ta the othfllJ' half of the B.~Ht in Sinn F~Jn

- 33 -

(52) Lenin. 1'1 A Carlcowre of' MlrxieuU: Imperhtllat Eco:no,m!.sln" C. W. Vol •

. ~

230 p.64~

(03) Abstentton from such activit.y \VaS the original I pritlciiple1 over which the Prevos split in U70. In Cacti fot'the Offtctals:; the abandonment of absteusl,.,n~B m was bl1t one part of a: complete eccomodatton to the existence of the Six CounHes, and acceptence of tts histor,iQ legit:!. macy,

The PI'OYiB~ona!5 have, ["ecently~ alae Abandoned their 8bstenttontsm. with regard to electlona In the Six and Twenty-Six Counties .. 1:~or tl'le moment, howe"el'~ this ranw::!nswUbfn the c'onooxtof oppwiUon to partition Rnd the continued use of l'evoruHon~!"y violence. On !'ts awn" atandtng candidates shows moro political acumen atnce there is much propaganda. value- ro 00 de rt vad fro tn this tactle e En t the p rog ram we of the P revis lena is re ~m ins, as before, petit-bOllrg-eoh~t utopian and, in the last analysis, hosttle to the working e Ius.

(54) The truthfulness of thls was most recently underlined (1980./81) hl the tnQhi UsatloliB 9.C1"OSS tbl1l 32 C,ountiee In ~.u.pport of the IIlIDger Strik:e~s ~ F,or'it fWIllJC,aount Dee 'Q_ta:ss §tJUggle~ (Nba. 8&9~ J'uly-Oetooor HI'S1) by tb.e Iris h WOl"kel'8 Group., .

(55,) Oparatlon Mo,torman took place on 31st July 1972 when the British army am.ae;hed their wJ!\y into the nationalist 'No-Go~ area.s of B2Ua,t and D:e1"l'y6 The operation came soon afoor 'Blondy l'-"riday! (21st J-uly) when 22 bombs (not 25 as the text states) exploded in Betial!lt. NIue etvtlians and two 901:1181"9 died, One week later 4$ 000 -extra troops were dl"afted it! in readiness for Operation Motorman.

(56) sean McStlofa£n~ in hIs f!!6_!!2ita,of a RevoluUnnar,:t descrtbee the !!Iimtionwhen 'he was .ne·s r to des til :

I' Politica.l tension had not been 90 11igh. in Dubltn for decades. 1'hsec troops ware completely in.e.xp.-a:rlenoed in serious riot eituatio.M tm the Nortbe:rn seals, Bioodshed In the south would have heavy repezcusstons, with genel"al bUterness and dhrlEli:on and there would be untold eoneenuences for the RepubH.cElu Movement. 11

So be began. to take water the next day and explained why;

~r I want h. t1 protests to be peaceful, by which: I mean no rlot1ng*

nOB ton&4:hrow:l.ng, no abuse {} r ruu'na~c Ii U lng of Twenty-at_x

county forces ~ T'ht! :fig htts centre d in the .No rth and must be

kept th~re. I do not want anybody hurt Oil.' blood spilled on my behalf in the Twenty"'S1x countie5~ That 18 why 1 am takIng Uq,uids. II

Nobody ean blame McSHofBdn for- andtng hia hunger eh"iket but the poUticaJ justifica.tion. for it was reprehensible and typical.

(57) Lenin. tfDlacuadon of SeIf~DeterminaUo:n Summed-Up!1 C. W •. Vol. 22 p.355

Emphasis in the orig1f.1at~ - -

(58) This ie, no longer Ule poe Won. of Workers Power. Sse the article on TOM 'i n this pa Olpbl,et c



One ,of'the pOlitlcai c enelue ions' reached by 'the Left Faction in the document Tlre1andt 18 andthe National Qu.estion' was that is must sel'iously fI,OOk: to build TOM~ Workers Power inbartted that position. and although we, we're far from unerttlcal of the ieaderBhip' and politics of TOM we matntained that position ' w:til after tbe 1979 TO'M.oonferencEl' when 'we with.dNW. Fromtilat time we hav,eregardadTOM as an obstacle to the buUd'lng of all anti ... imparialisf mevemeat in the wo rking e lass ~ A poB tical balance 8 beet of fhe rise and fall of 'TOM -ts offered hera not merely to show the ccrrecmeaa of our a.Uitudef.o 'TOM then and now, but to 1Underl'me the m..'ljOl" Ieasons t'bat must be' learned and acted upon if future campaigns are 00 prove more fruitfuL

With the demise af the Anti-Internment Lef!jgua (AIL) in, early 1973~ the Left FaotIon were' the first on the Brj.tls,h left to eallfor. a tTroops Out' Campa.ign. Yet due t~ the opportunism of both i:he L S. and the IMG it was left to a. few mdividual ,~OtiviSt8, in Lendon to :form the nucleua of Tom tn August 1973. From the very beginning ·of TOM the !.jcft Fac'Uon, and later Workers Power, had a. conception of how to build TO M that was sha rply counterpos:e,d to the individuals in the Ieadeeshtp, We always strsased the dangers of Impa:Uence. It was always necessary t.o approach IrIsh solidarity 'wbrk stripped of 111usions as to its ease, to be wa1ry o,r always e,eeking !high~pronlel' acttvtttes and

I get-,big-qutck'r atl.ints, unconnaeted to- serious day to day w.ork in the trade untons, A movement for the withdrAws.l of British troops from I1'Ie1andwas and Is unit kel y to be on the s calf! of the T Frene h out of Alga ria' 0 rthe 'US' out of Vietna III 1 move menta, wh to h invol ved hun d.:redtll ,O'f thousands. Thie ts beeaus e, in the Ii rs t place, the rEI Is .no eoosc l'ipt B l"my Ul the Six Co-unties suffering maasfve casualties which fuels a rget our lads out of :lit~ s6,nti ment 01" even a more poUt1caUy neutral war weary . .moed, Secondly, Bl'iti9h Labou.r"s, oompHcity in imperiaUsm!s ruination of Ireland has always been deep-going with only momentaey and partial breaches in bipartiaenshfp,

From the start of our work ill TOM we i.nsisted upon putting the campaign

on. at prtnctpled antf-Imper-ialfst basis .. As recently u Februllry HU3,2 Workers Powe r had re asea to repe at j ts POEI ~tion to a labour move msnt c onfe reno,e on Ire la.n.d aga ina.t almos t un iva rs al eppostnon. It ts worth 9 trlting it he rei:

H .Only n"roopB Out ~" expresses '~he principle that the working


clulB must be WOD.Lo. The·tle ts 'DO pl'cgresB~:ve role for BrlUsb(lDpeda.ltot troops in Northere Ireland. The eall for geU-de~rmtnqttoD hi inextl'~.oBbly Unke.d up with the chauvinlat 1get 'the OOYB back heme' call BlldmakeB clear our 'OPP09 i ti on to ru Ung c: IBLB 8 moveel:o devo lve m m tar)' t'1ulpobrdbtUfy for AI uniQulBt Btate upon the' UDF OT the RUe ~ It directly eendemns pet1;tUoo. "1 (1)

CO:btm.ry to thiavlew the T0l't11eadersbtp downptayed th.e poUUcd tmp9I'~n,ce of tche two central de mandsand peddled the i1hudon ,O'f an eBBy r09.d~ to a 'mass and b'l'Ollld-mged mov,en:e n~~ :u that pe'1"9pBctlve 111vohriEld leaving bide the nnUiwpedo.l1s: I:lI then 90 n bad to be. In a decumens- rWbet~B TOM? '-wrj1;ten by the leadersh.~pfo£lUon m 19175 U was argued;

,. 'TM, two de ma.nds of TOM were never Been as a U ruH:at1o!l ,I1!1d a ~ stra~ght-jacket on TONPa a.cth:l.ty. but .ra.ther Ai! a way of a.llowmg 'TOM. the neceSBli!!ry fil.eadb:l11ty to o:pe.rnt.e wtth the new forces acU\'e 'IBlithe Ids h qu.e,! tton ~ u

''l'hh atUtude aubJlequently led to dropptngthe princ:ipled slogans in prnC'tiae. ForedIDpl,e.on the Oc'ooter 27th" 19'14 demoWlh'ation tlDiemaln. TOM banner wse "'Brittan Tt"oope Ou.t of IreIandu which deUberatelyra.Ued to dJisUnguiBh :Itself as an :a;nti-impel'la.Us't <detn&:!d. In jllst1fi:cttUOil1 f~"Jl' fbla" and other, ·GXft.m,pl,estlmt W{lr.et~fiDUow the TUM lead~I'l3 would ~udge success or 1i'e.ilu.t'e only in te l'msBxp:r'ee Be d in. '~Wh.a t is, TO M;? I : uDi.d t'his de mo he Ipl to build the T OM? I.

The!H~ Inot,oonts, served. to mustratethe pr.iIU1Ucal g;a:~, the.t separated [he TOM leo.d.e:rship 'f':rolm Worki91'8 Powelr~ We tded wwrn TOM into !it v.~.blrant united front o:rga.n~!lat1(ffi of labotu.· movement bodies with 9" leadte,rshlp that r-eneeted tbis base, This wa.e nevel" to happen ~ . on t be Of! e s ida ~ the.l'e was the w ~lfut1 abstemtiO'Jl of too left grmtpa in the elrly yeaJrs 01 TOM't whl'ch tlitere,by allewed the ~eade'ralb1.p cllque to go lOI'l,ely unchaUenged.On the other'" there was the ebvteua wnllDgf.l@iiIS of TOM. w give up the fight fOlr G, SlllaUmtse in toowo,rkJng C1,BSB and. with it , ~'he pmpa,r,edness 't6 undertake a l@fig't'iby peri@.d of patient pr.opaga.ndaw1thln the :rank and me 0,1 tlletr de unions 0 Too 8ubi'it1tute WWII to be II tbl'\Oi,lilde·l"~ approaoh which megnt~rIli8mgt th.equ.estlon ,of Ireland in aay 'form with {Held of laoou'r-movement tprogretHlives '. [n fact1 the, pl·s.ctionl ImpHee.Uou of thil!!l was to UmU the political impaoet; of t;he, Irish qu:esU.oll m

that allewed by th-e I progNulua.ive'r fellow-travellers, namely, to Ubend prolmpeddlam.,

The ~a.1:rour movement ,approach 'of TOM, whUst formany a priority before 1977 ~ was a:ngled around ,the Labour P!l\rty' M.. pte wh{j habitually vDted against the PTA renewal in the Houaif!' O'f CommonB~ However~ since TOM had not pllevlottsl1.y IUd d~wn Bome Bolid roots of rulti-imperia:UBm m the trade unlDn a:nd La.bm:u· pa.rty bl'antlMs. TOM waN constantly fo,r.ceclto let the political rmmlilg bemttde by UrES MP' d. If nouOOul' MF' r S, we 1'a prepa!led to suppa rt !Troo;pB Out Now~ then tbeeo.st of continued. U!l50n was not figbU:ug fo'r an. anti-imperialist s;pprouh which would inevitably tnvol veelaabes wUbtoose

I prqgreS8 i vas t •

Feu:' TOM this relatl<Oli9bip with, la:boul'is m was most ll'npOrlrutt. It was esubl1s~ hed m 197. befio~ It Ha.,t:l:.onal e t1'llctu re for TO M. exts 00 d ~ with lac al branc bes doing senOEI work: 1n the la.1h..~.l" mOiVBment to gain tlJ.e vital poUticallnoo:pend--

enee, C()rlUlequeJ1tly~ tneilluaiou gr.8W th.Iltt It wu possible to split the :PLP QV~Jl." lrelmld and TOM'I a: crl tie.~B. ms of tlePLP became muted. We k.e FB ]P O'!iVG r W8.E! n6!V\l.u' opposed M re~atWg to La.bour MPlo bnt BS we satd, as early as 1975~

II '11!e crucial issue In the 'use' O'f:tft.bD~r MPls ts do. they brtliJg their a.ii.lppodera '!I1W the movement''? Do they help ravot~f!oofJ.,ries fo get thl'ougb. to fila broad. 9t1"ola af LP :mrlu.enced worblls?U(2)

The answer to t'hlew generolly-been 'no'. mWil:"1a'bly~ fol' example, To.M

did not~lmd does nut~fm:d JimmMa.ynfil'd MP opening up her supporters 00 .anH.-hnperlBUBt prHganda~ rl.ther~ TOM ht:l.d ope'n a.lready COT!1.mitl~d acttvi.l!!tB W lefUstp~hpperial tIt a.~tl!!I.ogt.eg ~ In pIIl(!8 m sharp pele mie ;vith t1r!e Hk~s

of Maynard lI!nd unIter! {room in acUcm wltboor and nor' supportErs 3.found

11 m:tted bulP'rog res s iveme~9u :res TOM c rea ted a mutual ad mt ra.ti on ,society wl.:th le:ft-TB'fcu:,m!sts.

The wmingness ·of the TOM ~eBdem and the ·Pt'Og·tegs:ltves! 00 use 811U:!h. otMl'l' ,an.d ~n partfculer~ 'tf~s fEIlHll'M to draw ~l!I inbourlteriJ into the I'espooalble po~Utioma of leedersbtp meant 'that TOM lnevU.ably dsgenal"l!!.wd into an introspective mdi C(.Imformble cUqu~. 'Building TOM.' became, not the btlUdw..g· of a. unUed front wtth a le.9dera,bip that was fJooF!ls,tantly fluid repN!Rentlng the fortwles

of TOMts wiork tn the :unlons~ but thebulhflng' of a ~eperate o:rgan1Be.Uoowlth a. seplrate s,et of poUUoIJsand men:iJerantp .• W~y back in 1'91.5 Workars Power warned. tbatcontlnued lac k of an 1ndependent .l1ntJ. - t mpe rl'l.d 1st baBet

u., •• ~.eaves t'e TOlirl not a Pl"OP01' un~.ted fNl1rt~ .~ ndeed, not!i'l.llinUed f'rorDt at aU.,Et crea.tes a 'TOM leadership and members, a. moat unusual 9ituat1on~ ta,moe united fronts onlyha:ve the leadership and membe·rs oftlletr c,o:nl!tUuent parties. It io ,clearly undesirttble that TOMcrystalUs8 lnro an organisation ( yUll. cannot ha.vel a party on one. ~Bsue~md in TOMfB eaae, not even 3. fun programme 'fot' that ~s9ue

e i tile 1'). SUollBll org!U!.isattoD ~ OJ:lce fr,)J:me d twould act as an ebs tao le to. the building of e. real united front dr.lwfng in trade MiD:!:!. deleglttes at a. local and natloruiiJ h~ver t (3)

Between tbe flrstpubUc event of l'OM- a me0tblg in Fulhn.m Town. Han in November 1973- to 1.971 t, th~tendel'J(!I.eB we warned about earns to domtnate~ Yet m tlw.l pel'i.od looll"e wer.e~mpOl·mnt stePEl taken wMch~ if da·velopedl

could havea~red hflttall" thmg.B .. By Its acUvitte.r; TOM. dldrecagnlae that

t1ile wQrkmg class was the' acetal force tMt had to be th.e focus of 111sb aoUdati ty wart:. Labeuemcve ment delegate e enfe renceawe re hal d in the IMa.y of 197 4 and again :ttl May 197' [5 ~ the Iatte r a Ur~cting some 32 S delegates. The Oc'[ooor 1974 i rla,h solidarity de mons tnt tlcn att me ted 21 labour .DW<'Ve ment orgWlisa.t~onsLe8a '!;ibn four mantb:e dl:el" TOM was g~\!en a Mttanal etructura,

A 11 this wast of course t pas i the up to a po tnt; yet it B houldbe If! me m bared that both at tll.e cof:lferenc6B e.nd the demorwtmtioilS the anU-impetlllUst C01'{;l was '1'81'1 BW,\1!U. From the (lIumet TOlttt~ok the ea.sYf but Elv,enruaUy BeU~OOieatmg,pa.tb of 1!lIatdmg educational :forums whore IlL our movement de~egaOO5 would learn of the. current events, bidden from them by the· med'1a.\VhUet

tm:n'e W.Mf a.m.; ts, a role for Buch events, they eaanot 00 the main aim of fin ,!lDU-~mperlaHst soliMrity movement In its infancy. SwaUer conferences of del eg&t.es" 'MYblg already been wan to M. aDU-jJ::np~u"fa.Hsrt position :lntbe bf'lll~ches

- aa -

by priQr argumentw(JuM ]m,re been more meanlngf'ult a.nowln~ thea,s events to be W01~king {lonferenc.ns to dlscUBS how to take thewark fQl"\Vt.:rd. IrHHead~, they wQuldmeet1,ch:awIDg tOgeth91" people united only by all Imterestt m U'lamnd. P'QUUcaUy d.fu:lpal'ate~ they would com.mIt themaelv@s to W;t1.e. Inv3f'Jabiy. the potenUal of any intttattve wc}'utd evaporate ~"ftr.r the cmruference.

Exaotly the sa.me can- be saJd of the v.ari(J'~s labour mov,emuntdd,eg,at:iolJ1Bto Ireland, The Autumn U1<76 delego.tioil. was first of all o:rga~sed by TOM in ,Ruella. Wlt.,:Y as 'to Pl'~V€bit the organtahl,g commIttee of sponsoring bodi8ii f,rom being~Drmed to determme the l:1lcthUiee and poUcies of the ddegaUon~ Even WOl'se was to f,allow. Tbepl:!U'Ulad l"8pot""t~backswe;re u disaate'J'.A cOMeren.ce waa eatled over a yea,r taoor wUh less than half the dale,ga:tas 1:1l atten~Bnc0., In

a Ren."t" it WIlS a mtne-day wOl],der d~slgnedto create pubUl!:lity to keep memb8l'Sb.tp and flBlds aUve but "NUb no ra!llly serious, a.ttitude to developIng' WD1'k in the ol&9s.


The envelopmg and dlBp1i.~tmg cliqutsro that pervaded TOM: by the mJd .. 1970 IS C()ime ide d with a fled 'Ilownrum in the fortunes oIthe naUQnal 9 truggle 1inthe Sm. counUel!ll" together with imCreal!lied repression and Oeoreoged .a~~mpathy on

the :nmlnland ,aftel" the BtrmJngham pub bombltlgs., As ~NSUU there was !1 iIlIerl~ lous, di,s mt.egraUon in TO M Lutbe 1 ~7 '6 /7 7 pa rj od" with Sl trulS she drop in me mbersMp ~nd a deeltne 11'11 the mnnber of brlmoheH ,!3\ctive in the. localutes.

The de mora Us atton old mdna ted in a 8 p1:!:l in 1977. Tht 0 was ei1gtneel'ed by Big . 'FLa me am:II the EMG a:t the April collfe renee whe re they defillnldad the 1'e mover of the sea.n Re~d le.a!del'Bb:ip and ieft when~~ey failed to achlev~ it .• Ho'wl9vel'!~ although fheywe:nt on to form the United Troop'S Out, MOVelllE it in J~ly 197?' wUh some 200 pe.op~e~ U was not a principled p.oUUcRl alternative to TOM. The, iMG and lB~g Flame' tn f~lJt objected to the concentration on the organi9at,... iOflB of the working elase, aHhough they c:o'.Jched it asan objeotion 'to 'pressure gllOU'p I polllU08 o!'ientl!ted tu the Com wJ ttee Roo ros,of tile House of CD m numB. jfu its place they deshed ttn<~88 action", ra1emg lrel.ami in the CGl1rBe ,of exigt,... ~ng atn.tJggl(ls Umt workem were a.lroallJy 01" would be engaged m. At one le'vel the :relalll.ve, vItality of UTOM ensured the virtual d!s9.ppenrenca (If TOM. But at Mother le,vBl it was a further step away fruw an anti-.~mper'iHU9t BoUdaJ'fty m.€llvement.

UTOM b!'ought the 9,ub~ective deatres of the petit-bourgeois activism tnto Une wltb the objective dKficulUc9· of rals Ing Ir<aland in the worklntg class. In short. UTOM's activitiefl wet's tailored t-o, the 1l1!BW:! o.f U',6i mem.bet'9. The deJegate atncfum ,of 'l'OM was abandene d and ,the ~ shoo rmorve1tue:nt pl'iQl'l.'ttIB attw. wa.8 overt'll:ll'&Wl1I. 'I'hlUl t in the October 1977 tsaue Df UTOl<1!a papel'.~ ITroops Out~~ it was annnune ad Ul1Ilt the Is. beu r ID eve mEmit was now to be but one • fie! d of' inoorElett aloog:aida many ethers .. SiI,lib-oom.m1ttees existed for tb.~i suitably motivawd on the trade untena, La.bou.r Party~ w.oruen~9 :movement~ black movement. Iris b co Wi mlmity t ,8 rodents IllH:I yooth.

If anyl",bbl:e tJTOM (wh:l.ch changed ttaname oock flQ TOM in 1979) was a poUUc9.1 step ba.ckwards. Ta.iloring UTOThltta work to the e~Mest per~phery and the fmDle'"

- •• ,tJ! -


diRle COflCel'D.8 of that perlphery did re rut in greater numbete. mamly non-

'working: c:hl.S9~ being Involved. In July 1977 UTOM had only 6' ven bra..ucooB but b~r by mld-1978 the total had eltmbed to about thhiy. Yet the a.'othriUes of UTOM almost ,completely obscured the fQl"nlai fUlu-t1l'lperla11s In of its two de manda, UTOM,trOM was to. become increasingly like the Second International with the

two demands tmformmg the odd adlcle 01" preaches to the converted, whtle

moral hu:man:tt&rlrudsin domtnatad 99% of practical acttvity,

The nadir of thl.s method was reached with the International 'rrib\tJIal on Britafn"s Presence in Ireland- & From 1978 thlEl dominated the work of UTOM. Of what

did U oonsist? As with the Amnesty and Bennet Reporlst to get reputable perao'nag,Be to document end p rove the e1!;i.a tence of to .rt-ure in the BbI: eounttea , ExpUciUy not rmtl.-ltnperilllilld' (Iuld conhdning aevel.'al pro--impe.t1aUsts) * tbe Tribunal was conoeived ag an e1ll:arcisc which would eXPQise the real depth of vtolenee and. torture In NI to the Br.!it-1ah working class tbus making' it eaBler

to win the .:mti-lmpsriaUst arguments later. As Pat Arro,,·stnitb.! a lead1ag .

mOM member argued; .',

n For although the TrIbunal docs not (and by ita nat.ure 'cannot) call for t:roo:pa out yet~ by exposing the atrocities baing perpetrated by the British hi the north it way lead more and IDa re people and 0 rganiB at.ooe to, the realisation that ,t.ropl:.)\£I must, 'be w'lllidrnv.m. n (-i)

U'TOM'a reBsm'lilW is absurd, It is, first of 1.11 based QUa. mlsconcepti,on a:oou:t the real nature of. the tCOnopimcy of atlenee! over news from the Six cOWlt1es. )IeN aqualntenee with the fu.cts of Brittah represlidon do not convince a. Brltts,h. wo1'ker, of its Inj1.ilIi3,Uce. Ali fa'r as s/he is concerned torture may weU be ~ustttted because s/he seN the IRA as 'thugs' and 'lonfc,eUng cow!lrthJ~. It makes the 'ob of an ant1-i mperi!iltst n-o easier. In fact~ other organisations w1l1~ to one degree or another, I'e'!i1'fHd these facts. There are prec!oWil few an i-iOlperiaUsta bfiwaver~. to shape an RtlPlmlnt that breaks tho worker from their tacit acceptenee that ll'wo troops or HtJCar'e fully 1us tUied in engtlglIig in torture. In·the last analys,w. the Br!Ush state doea not feu· the 1"@'velation of British viQlebCe (witness the Bennet Report). It does! 1}owc\e:l7t seek to cover-up the t:nttb. a.bout il'tah resistance to the. troops, ita 8UOC8n,es a11d t1l9 degree of support fortlle r6s,istenae t.., the na.ttoooliat ghettoes.

The IMdmg ideologues for the Tribunal on the centrist left- the IMG- marle' the greste.Bt claims for it. In e paper to the June 19?9 UTOM!TOM oenferenee they argu,eo;

n 'l'he T.ri'bunal wm not breo.cb the waH of S!,Uenee~, it wnl step right through it. ,I

Who re!m~m.be:rs its findings klally?

.At that 1'97,9 Conference Workers, Powe- 'initiated the only pr·inoipled oppositlon

to this COUI"Be, along the. lines of the arguments m thie pamphlet. SQ' entrenched w&e the opportunisM within UTOM trAt OUl' resolutions received only seven votes.

In many res,pe·ots UTOM!TOM was trflll:DllI.tised by the failure of the TrIbunal tD produce '~he breakthrough envi~aged. It ",·as just one fatted 9 tUlI! too much. The 0 rlsla ,of dirac tion, ~d mna.r to t 97 8 /71 reappeared ~ It rea.cted to the 19 eo I Slhunger atl"lkes vtUh all the moraUsm that fa.iled :lEi the case o.f tlu.1! TrtbulHl1,

- 40-

rejecting the oentrality of the oase fa,", poltttcal atstus and seeking, in. ita place, a. 'broad' alltanoe on 'the bi!t.ala of ahuman!i...1.rlan 'd~BtJ:'f.! (wor~llY.bu~ in€lIffecLuaI) to sa:v,€! Uves and improve prison oond1tioi1B. Once again; TOM failed the test, failed to pNSent an rulU-imperllllist Itrgument. Thay thus Iailed 00' confront

bead on the poUUcal botld ti'w.dt tied '\t,··orkers t'1 Thatcher and Foot who ware immune t() the maudlin sentiment of the clergy.

The hunge}"'<-striki:!a oome at a time of ~bb for TOll. It failed to gaivanisa itself through Its low key campaign, Toda~/ TOM Is t11Qrlbttild. eeltpsed by the La.bour Commit-iee on Ireland cni'lj.riQg on TOM politics ~u the Laboua' Party and the Irish If'reedom .Movemenf. it can only preserve II ,eembtance of orga.nisa.tionallifet .l:.t appsara, by 'broadening I its concerns beyond Ireland to t.he BJ.I.l-embracing issue of antt-repressten, dra.ggitlg black youtb~. gays and others :!into its! clutches. A failed eltque, Q swamp of centrist moralisDI; TOM has been eV0i'ptbtng but whh.t the Left FactIon called for ten years. agoa prtnetpled a.nti-imparidistt Troops Out Now~ ,geU-DeterrumatiOOl" current patf,entiy laying fQttndact:l.ons· in th~ rank and f11e of the t~ union movement,


(l) Workers Power No. 30.

(2) WOl"kera powe r; Pe rspectfves fot' Irish Work. (3) ibid.

(") T T roOl!! 0.Yt!. + February F 1919.

- 41-



'!"OM has not been the onty 80Udartty campaign on t~:.:J BriUin ~eft since 1973. which baa attempted to !lrgan.ise BUPPOrt fo!" tbe IrIsh freedQm fighters. The Prisonars Action Commttteea, run by thtl RCG. had it high profile in the late 1970'te. The Labour Cor.Hn1ttee on Iroland bast atnco 1979, IncreaSingly taken ever TOn-"lIS fl'aru:lbJa€l on b.·lah .'!;!oHdtu.,ity work within the Labour Party. In addtttcn, the vaeouum crested by TONi's damise hu allowed a. sectarian fo':rce eo rush tn, O!'igip~ny formed as the SD:laah the Pl"ovenUoo of Terl'oriB m Act (SPT AC) by the RevotuUoon.:r}r Conuhu.nifit Tendency(RCT) in late 1979, and . now called the Irish }'reedom Moveme,nt(IFM), thi.s solidarity ca mpaign has

an obvious organisational vitality as compared to TOM. It can lUIWtUyrally greater ntJnlbe:rs for pleketa and conferences than TOM. During Easter 19,82 t?b-e lJi'M even managed to organise a 100 or so strong youth delegation to Darry and Ba1faa,t. an enterprise invented. and once the preserve of, TOM lta0~f.

Bow then. do we assess this eballenge w the opportunism of TOM? Doe,ij I.t offer a pl'incipled al'tern.!ltive'? We do not tblnk so, l\4aUy of thefo!"mal critiohHna the IFM. makes of TOM areeorrect, Tbeyare made in tMs punpblet

and ware I;lrtLcutate,d by Workers, Power and tlle: L-eft.Fa.ction long before the ReT were born. Neverillale.6~ the ccnelustons that they have drawn are fla,wed and need to be I'ejected by the Revolutionary Communist Party iRCP} and those drawn to the IFM if they are to pa.rticipate in the bu.ilding of an ,anti-imper1a.Uat soUdarity movement in Britain.


Our fi:rst set ot.crtttctams of the ReiHl] work coneerns the poltttcal el1tBrlll. that governs activity around thu Irtsh question. Namely; what are the ansv.'Srs to the following, what are the tast<a that a r6lfolut1onnl"Y group faeea in carrying out 'unconditional but critical support' flir an anti-colo at t3truggle? How are the two sides related in practice, that is~ what relative weIght should the}' be gtven?

A ppa Hen by tbe 13 a uJ tu latton of the eentr i s ts i.n. fue face of the rese tlon to rs p~ u b he an v 10 Lance t the 'He P have sarldl ad the UlliJ~" bea with a one-s tried notion of whet 'uncondtttonal suppczt' entatla, It has been argued, for exatnpia,

11Th.e ReT gives uncendtt 0' al support to nattonal liberation movemsntaand we llartlc.ndnrly gtve such su.pport to the movement

for IN~.and~.s Hbemtf.on. We have our ~rlttclams ~)r the progra~ rn mali! of the 0 rganis a tl Of; 2! lealdblgtb.a [;!1.0VO mant(l! ' •• But W0 have nevtJ:r UEW d our rnvltHv to critic !da tn'S I.ti.~,A ••• "

UTodllY eny crrttets m of the IRA 0111y gnes euecour 'tio the for-ees of Britll'ilh ctiJlU !!inia rna II

Furl her [nore t _

UWben we haw 'non large mmlbe~'S of Bl'ltiah wOl'M'l:re m relll)Ond to IDA bombs Witil jubttatt~ont when expleatons result In trade unlou calling for dtl"~.ke, action and mn.1!3'S damDmlltrattons.ro fo,t·ee ,the hnmedtate withdrawal of British troopQ~ t~1L:thel'8 will be a. time

tocr1tlc!s(\ the prograliliffie ofProvmional Sinn 'Few.!! U)

We dls8grcee stt'o:ngly with this view. 'Wor~ke,rfj Power ce.ntres Us Wf.I'l"k :Iu'cnmd the n.eotito develop an inte~at1o:na:l communist Jilzlogr:lIlmme for the work:l.ng

e laB s. Our p:ropD.ganda tI fOCU!BS!a d OOW,llrflS that taa k, As revo lutlono.ry eo m m~niBta, seekJng to train a: 'vanguardt we hava to steel thewol'king olose, to be·

1 rreO,mli.c UiOibly opp oBed to the eta te t but a UJ'ot-o those po Ut\Lcd cu:r:remtsi wh.o (l:lllW;ot ~ead ,the fight agalnSlt the elate to Ii 9ucceSBiul concluion,. Wb:l!lef it is etel:l!.r that ,tlhecmiLcrete t.aB,l~S within t}l_e mapecthte labour mOYelW31ntB, of

lre.bwc1 and Br1teln. a.1"e d.Uteren.t tnthei.r tactical empha9iB~ there lB no brick wan betw,een t'lile 01. To bund one if! to renounce 'the tusk of fraining a .9;Qm m,y,nle! cadJr.c .• For Ute RCP~ InterJla:tionaUa m is merely na.t1ona.Us m steod '00l it8heail

, .

-'U!llCHU<ml support for: phYB'lod lcree :repubUcantam- even though it 1i11lmown

n.t 'tMg force ca:nnof; lea.dtha f~ght agams t the BriUB h 8 tate to a pro lete:r1an vlctoI'Y~,

Th.e DC P na1,,16 ~xpUcitly denied tltat a pr,opnga.nda grOtMp OiELD a. ... d mast develop, a program.me for the l.nt9rna.Uonal Bt'il.'Uggle~ de9piba' such a groul)B tnnbiUtYt om a: number of flI'onts,~ to implement itprBot:l.ca.lly. emly when the Rep have

11 group 'in OiI'enlsaU0ll!! c,crupEllUtion to tlile IRA (Jill the ground would they cOMid;arra:la.lllg critl.ci>\Jm! ,of the Pflnv'<M. Aa II t"ei!ultthe, Be P I'enoUU'IJ'fC the need tOI dav1elop ,131. progra.Il:I.!l1.e in oppos1Uon t.o :republ:ica.nhlm now~,

In. lrelAn.d tbe 0 bief tas k of revohdtooff.:ri.es ta the lJoUtttJ,a1 exposure of the physioal force tr,adiUon t'Ogether wUh their centrtct upDio.g!gta; < only tkr~ug'h the e ~abo,I'a. tian of fooussed prcpaganda a l'otmd thape FS pw:lti ftl of Pal'mWl.e:nt Revolution and pmetlcaJI Wlfted bont work ,agaiJ:'U:!lt too Rue and the .Arm't

can a pa.riy' 00 built which br~Egs tha workl!11gcbSB to the head of th.e ndl('ina.l~ :1st struggle and BID 9 IDRSn partttten and ilIstUuoo Il 32 county Irbh. 'Workers Re-pu.blic'., At eve,ry turn it ie n.eces Bllry to C onfroni lind break down the, all eg1anee of the nationalist populatJ.on to aU brand9 af republteantam, In Brltatn~

we ffuoomlnate t1Us to a. mere ness attack on the Erl tJa h state. We do not pls'c.e any d~mands on the Pl'oyoe.o.l' INLAto gi\l'8 up any ,of ibi methoda Q:€ straggle before we wUI work ill the 'tHe UfIi:OJl9 lind Labeur Party to get the w':»l'klng clasSI to 8 ida wUh tM UtA nga.fnElt to" 8 tate •

However, '0U!r Wlcon<ilt1onal supp.ori only extends, 'to theIr aoUons agB.tnst BriUsh hnperlfll:1sl1l. 01:' ita a.gents~ This include's ita economic 5tmCm1"est poUtical representaUves or military gOOflB. Yet we remain 'highly cr1.ticnl of tta niatlGm a»dpmotice towards the wo:rJd.ng class and progroElBs!v. peUtboullti!ioiBh~, In Ireland.

This dtsthlcUon between tbe Bl'ffulh imrper aliets and Loyalists em the 'one

S,idell and the we king elaa on tim otner is crucial for our conceptiun Qf uncoudltlona~ but crit!oaJ E'lUpport. In tts ~Ll!cEl j the :Rep milk n fales dlstinotiWli between thBm.ethod~ the IRA and INL} usa in their struggle and the cont-

ent of their p ·ogr8.mnu: to\" aoefal c"'.a.nge.(2) b Re? are uneond! Ional with J'sgard to the methods employed (ooO"llls l;ttc) and critical (altl'o:.J.gh silentt) with respect to the latter~ "rhis error, for example, leads them 8puLog!ae and, worse, advocate" t,he forms of eHtist t.."lotJc ... used by tba ProVDS. They ma.~aln Umt 1'eIvolu~1onary communists wou d lnevUnbl~ use t £l SBme tllcHes. They tHereby obUtEn'a.le the distinction between t-}le neeJ for nee ... 'eQY in tlm planning: and execuilon of mdtvldua.l operaUona and tile need for the .:JE.tiona.l1st working

e tass to' axe-reie e pol Umd eentrel, through I e Ieote d r&pr931en taN ves lover the politioal dira.ction of the military c~mf)iilgn

It is aimpty wrong of the Rep to divide up the means and tho ends of phys'lcal fo ree r,epubH,cIIllta m, The :for me of a trugg:le adopted by the rnA and .INLA are the means by whleb. thely implement their programme, We are 'equaHy critical of both from tlleatandpolnf-of the iI'looresto'of t Irlnh working class, yet we will support the l!ationa.Hst.~ right ta use any methods at hand whicb serve to break up (lr desta.biUso British impel'i..alism'f:) oppre.311:dve rule,

Wo,rkers P·ower does Dot draw any i ti."1CtiQD between ci7fHa.n or Ill"my oasualUes that resultfl'om a tacks made on Britleh h:l:l.pet1A ts~ interests. Both are inevitable in R. war or national Ubera-t10t! HDd the re.sponsibfUty for de-8th! must liew1tn the Bt1ti9h etate whieh ensures them hruugh tbeh~ oppressive pl'e.aence'~ We even support th.e IRAle right to carry out such attacks on the Dla:mlwul. Deap.i.te. tMs it Is still nensense to arg '9; as 'the nmd step' M.B done, that.

"To que8~ilon a par1Icule.r act 00 "VIolence carried OIlt tn the struggle is tQ qnestten the' t'ight of the bieh peGl, 9 to fil.ght forthet r freedom". (3)

Wltb typical ultr8t-left ovel'-J!M.el'"al satlon ~he Rep obUterate wt-JIlt is a crucial distinction for l'svolut.ierutry communists:, n8'melYt the right of the oppr-edsed

to li8aist h,y WhateV'IU way it ean, and tha po1l.iUcl.tl ltmltf1tlons ,01 the I'sSisrtenee movement ~ It is not a. 0l9. tte r of G tngi eing out !l ~ pa.rttcllla:r Rot I for en'l tic is m • AU 8Jcta of reaiatenee carried out unde t ' e lea.d"rshtp of tbe PlI'OVOl!I1 wiU have t1le same defects; it 13 imflUlterin.1 wha the precise nature of the target WIlB. wber.eU was Ieeated, ''.)1' wlm.t was the ,cmnpostt en of the oaawdty list. As

long BS they 9..00 tltrgmtsthat are part of a diecerTI:llbte struggle aga.l:n..i1t the BrUish state we delend thei" right to carry it out FWd we wiU resist the attem"" pta ,of lour' government to confine it or destroy the exeroise of that :dght. But we must and do use thl3: ~Mlon of B. 'pa.rticuLllr act' to use it as a. symbol of the bankruptcy 01 the Provo or INLfl strategy.

The real point of issue i bow, Jn~rhat. manner, 1.8 the crl.t1cbm raised? In what context does it appear? It 16 ob'\!"tons. as the Left Faction document shows. that the SWP, for example. have c:ritl.ciBed th~ IRA!a actions :I.n such a way that theyal'e merely echotng the prejudtMB of the bou.rgemeie 0.9 they fUterthrDugh the :Eb1tieh working olasa, Yf't tbe 9WP are an eru:!y target. Workers Power believes ·that the way we have reacted t-o such tests Ie whony different. (4) 'CritIcism ts subordinated to support but not absent: and it 19 cl"itlcd from

a revOlUUOOR1'Y point of vfew~ In B .Ol:"it~ it ill Ii COmlJIUUiBt respense.

- 44-

Against t.<h.is the RC'P are reduced to the argument that our l'pqdera wHllnlerpret our II,Upport lIS juet it fl~Jbtle form of Chllt.lvin:l.61ll; that is, that he nrshe

is not intelligent 0,l1ou;h to grasp wha.t fs really being ,said. In the end this

ktnd of nonsense is derivad from the rigId. fc1'o~e..l fhiakin_g that characterises tbe whole poUtical method of the, HCP. OUr methcd allows us to d1fferel'l.tiate between the respon9ib:I.lit!el,J that fan upon t':' eomnmnlst propa.ganda organ and the necessary tactical f1s;db lity that's a vital p'll:rt of praettca! work within

the labour movement. WOi"k.eI'~ Power it! responetb @l enough, for example, to realtse what the tasks 00 the moment are ln a enauvtntst trade unionist branch tn the Immediate aftel'~th ill republican Vlolenoe. The stick may have to be' oont ,c'onsiderably 1m the' direction of uncofidUioJlQl~ IS opposedto critical support .. Yet the party press, especially of a propag!ulda. org8nlSRItiont ,~and the R'CP objecU\!'ety remalna one also despite ita premns.tons)demands ,8 rounded pos;iHoo. It testifies to the confusion. 0'£ the HCP that itl!! paper. 'the next stept is lla1l11 party paper and half 11 solidarity bulletin for val'iou9,·causes. If the IFM bad ,any 'real poHtlcallndependence fr,om the "R.cP, that is, it drew ill other Iabour moverrent famest it would ha.ve Us own bulletins. These· bulletins would mu"l'Y matedal explaining; the na.UonaUsm case in an a.nU .. i.rupsria.ltBt context; and in e very way seek to unde r ttl ina the argu ments of the 1 mparialista . BIt Ht:ha.t we 1.1'8 to ha;p~Jent what wool d tbe He P' he. vle leltto pu bUsh in T the

ne,xt, 9tep~?

For the Rep and tbe IFIlrI solidarity work consists In part in confusing the working class vanguard a.bout the distinction between !'epubUcan!siin .. its tasks and filethodat and rovolutionary communism. They have become 190 disgusted at llieIlecord of the Brttl.e,h labour lllQVelllent on Ireland that. ,not content With working t-o break the rank and fite from comptioity 111; tbe crhrLes of its official leade'1'8htp, the Rep intend to puntsh the· working class by l':atlying It unerttteaHy to pbyslcal force repllbUoanisOl. at which pelnt, 1rn.rlng served its politioal pEmance, no doubt it wHl be rewarded at a future date with 24 carat Rep bolshevism.

Blurring the important dtattnettons, !bending the stick! until it breaks; has led the, .RCP to peddle unpardonable confuSions in a. totally light~D1in.ded fa.shion~ Take, for example. the alegan 'Bl':l.ng Th~ War To Britain'. 'rhls was meant to au. mmllrjis e the.ir pos U10n on eoltda rity and firs t made its appe arence in the buHd .. up to the '1~lunBBid,e Conferenoe 011 Ireland, scheduled for M.ar'ch 19BO< T'h.e Bel" b.as never lu.sHfied Us use. In a reply to an attaek on the alogsn (5) 'they me'rely'UB'6 long qu.otes from L~n1n and Trotsky whioh 8tretlS the dll't~l ,of l'evotut1QPariJes to support nattonaltst uprisings. Yet this unc'ontentiou!l~ if deolilgogic reply aalde~ no reason ,Ile to why that: particular siegeD bellit 9uw.med up, the position of unconditional support was advanced, The' fact 1s. of eourse, that fhe Rep designed it to be ambiguous. Bl'iDg the war to the attention of EriUah workers? Advocating a bombing C8.m.paigr~ on the mainland? Take your ehotea, PoUUcal preoision and the need to clarify the issues comes, second plaee to the seetartan desire to 00 p-rovocative for !tEl own sake, to snecurage, again for t ta, OWJ:IS8 ka t the wrath ,of the 'tuc tn orde l' to' produce meaning less, mart,ynio'm for the SPTAC. It is R dtsg're:ceful tactic pl'se:leely bamulSE :It

givee the labour bumallorflts ,W'II easy mrgelt and dlows tbem to 1llA1ntain the cObBplracy of ,silence that ensures wor-k:f::l'S re main immune to Ilnti-! mper1s.Ust argumentB.

- 45-

That the uBage of the slugan was not dedt'ed f.rom any scientific unoorstarlding but rather th(2 pr,essrn~ neoda of R sectarian stunt is proven ~'Y the ease w1th ' wb!o1h 'it was dropped, without any explanatton , !iaV"tng served its purpose "I it was replaced by the formulation 'open up ~ aeoond front of the Irtah war In Britain! ~(3)This ftsell' waa aeon phased out. By th.-f:, time the Februar.y 1982 IFM conference cams a.::r.ou;ndthe slogan lMld become the poHtkally !r..nOOUOUSi and potenj. any OpportufUpt! 'freland: time fol' BrUigh workers to ru:~,,1

The la-EIt two years have seen tremendous developments in Ireland. From. the

s W:rt oft:he fi ra f; hunge r - 9 trike to the Assa mb t y elec ttens in the Six C OUD tie-iii ~ the na.Uol'l.BliBt populEltioo, hIve taken to Slh"{!!i;;!ts and left the m aga:ln~ th~ Provo9 ~ thruugh Sinn FeIn have turned to the ballot box aDd INLA hes emel'geil aB a serious rival to the iRA. What are wo:rk.ero tolearn from tbssil,eVau.ta?

Befo re theee e Vlnte the ftC P said thiB j

"At B ee~min stage of the struggle the boUflso~B, Qn,Q peUt~OOt..rrgeols le~del'Bhfp 00£ the natioaal movements :realise that their class interests can only 00, defended through a Qompl'mnLS,e wUh il:nperialis m, It is the fftlI ura of the leade 1'9 hipg IOf the national move mentstc puroue a consistent struggle a.gainst impedaHIiI m that BOCtaUStB, must crJJ;tc {Be. II en

This isolatedrefemnce to the duty of scetaltsts baa .1'e'm6!.lood a dead-Ietter for the Rep. Whilst tbey have taken Cha.rlea Bllughey-a bourgeots na..ttonalist~ to task. t11ey have stood back frotIl oritically a.n:,lJystng the practice of the Sinn Fein during the hu..f1gE!r-stri.k.es or aaaessing the s:tgn.tlloa.nce of the e ectorsl turn, Have we not seen a .fl'iiluro of l€ladel'ship~ have we not witnessed any compromises with im.periRlis m? One wflllook in vain to 'the ned step' ,for

an answer. (13 ) ,


It ~a w'it1t 'theme poUUc.~l eoaceptlons tMtUi.e ReP Mve organtsad their Irish 90l1darU~r work. Wh,8n we look at t 11m record of SPT AC and the IFM it hi clear that they are guilty of twc, I-nterrelated enol's. Fh.'~t. they .2l'gan!!,~ the work in a 9,ectaria.n fashion. disavowing genuineuntted front work~l11td inviting support on yon condition that one observes the political m0l'10fKt1y of, the Rep. Secondly,. (Elnd increasiDgly stnco tbe formation of the IFlV!} the buHcUng of the tFMts initiaUvo9 smack ,of rank politioal opportuntam tba.t even TOM would

be proud of.

Befor~ detaiH:ng this record let 'I.Hl once more. ramtnd eurselves of how Workers Power bas argued the case for Irtsh solidarity work. 'Troop!!l Out Nowt 1 sud "'SeU'-determtmlUon.t are the lnd!!llpenEabie minimum for an anti-itnE!.!!!H!_t 1t:roOp,B out' eampalgn, We would not make it a condition of ooilding that movament that workers agree with unccndtttceal support for repubHmtn military aettene, although revolutronartes are obllged to try and tin them to that position. At the heart of this attitude is Q'31' undel'lstanding of the untted froot~

tlmt Is" an ugreemaJl.t [or common I1ction whi{)n bas 8. principled pr<lKt'essive thnwt aTOWld a part of our program me, through which it is poasfble to draw

ill vitally importtult secttm:w of the wgrktng clasa. Ill! doing tM~ we are reoog~ :nlstagtbe.t a Btru.ggle around a \hnUed bOlt positive demand prevides thti best

- 46-

co:ndH:iODfJ: fOl"convinatng wo rkers of the eupe riority of au r po HUes ",\per those of thai r present leade rs. MOlt ONe tally ~ H p:rov'!dea the beet opporttmity for provoktng'the present leaders tnro noUt:.\li at' ot!!i.J.ld eondsmnee, In their ayes

as aROOtellH of PD9U~ a..ct{OD., aoHOD which does not requi:l'e them to renounQe Ute'h' whole poU tlcal outlook, whIch would strike works ra as an tmress enable condition given the 38 y~t pa.rttn.l natura of tl\et:r awareness on the issue t:b.0mselve8~

The Rep oons1ders it in an oloog9ther dtf!&NUlt ,1lUltlIiQ.r~ Fot' thet'll the l'oGool'd

of the Labour Party and trRde union af'ftcdd'om ts aelfooevidently appalUng~ It

'£8 me rel y enough to &quaint wQrkfl rs wit h this, reo 6 rd and ot'gllnjS e an alternntive pole of activity in order to b:tea.k. workBl'H from ehe1t' co oopUcity tn this Ol'imea.gaillS't the ll'islh people. The Bep d~nY'th0 vo.HdUy of PT'OP09'fbg to werkm this way .. on tvm grounds. FIrstl tbat it lmpUas that the laboul"ite leader-s can become something that they cannot, rmmely t l"evotutlonari13s ~ S'e(londiy, that ooc,lluse' the NYot:u.tioDary vangua..rd is small, with little, hwet'age in the ~ilbour m.ove~ntt it can. be sa.fely ignomd by the leaders of 800'1111- demooracy. As a reBult~ -tie Rep rfla:lntal:t1t ContituUil.d attempts in this, direction inarltabl,y·le:ads watering down one IS polit1c9 to make the m more aeee ptable to Labour M. pta Bnd trade union lefts; wtdoh deguts the politics of anything postHve.

The ft ra t 0 bJecHonmiBWlderstandy the ,ai w, of ,the united hone whlc:h is not to drsse up re.formism u 1'8voluttOIDlriea oo.t seeks to unIte aa lar'gea seotion

of the elaas as possible around demands (eg: po ltical 8ta !ls) which does not require tbsmeo become 1"evolutiooat'ie o~el."'nlght bu' puts the politics of l'efo.rmism under iii rain and Ol'ellteethe best climate for thoBe poltttcs to be transcended. The second complail1t i£ a typ,lca.l piece of impross.ionieID. a wild genal'aUso.t!on based on the practice of seve'rat opportw st groups such eathe SWP or IMO whose Impatlenee bas led them. persintenUy to em('lotil down the rough edges of their po"U:UUi9 io ensure they do not owt agammt certain t'efoI' WI t. ou:rrent'lil., Of eourse, this J til not to deny thn t marg!.naU.:s.B tion does not provide problems andbackward pl'aasurea on gl'OUPy seeking to tmplement united fl'(JInt9:but~gnnda along these ltnea is as Important in that It can underscore the tretLchel'y of refornIist leaders who are see to refuse the p.ossibility of aetion against a. common enemy.

Nobody 18 suggesting that we wait for lllbou.rl.em to Ol"ga.nige action before we undertake U~ or that we Wldertake it onty on condlt!on that they it1yolve themselves at some point. Ne'Ye:rth.eleeBt in seeking to mob-moe the rank and. flle , fo,l' B-cUon it must never be lust sight of that that R&!. of the task is to genera. te pressu 1'81 upon the Ieaders to force the m W:reCOIIlS ider theI l' maQ'ti v1ty., ThIs i.e not because we want the Hkes of Tony Benn and Alan Sapper involved for thEl'frown contribution but because we recognise that whatever early euooeaSBS are a.chieved, people auch as those command influence over the m!l,'orlty of potential 6.ctivtBts 'that are Indtapensable to UI!I if we are to Wr0S,t ev,e,m 'the 8maHest cooces8ions never mind gre&:t vlctolies. AlB we shall show tha Be p S olJany out theil' work tha. It in s co rnlng tbla approach 'they eKq\ ude th.e possibiUty of involv1ng the leaders of the la'OOur movement or aeotlo1!s of t'b.eru in ot"!!Aisatiob and mobil1Bo.t1on of thB unltedwork so undermiD'ing i'ts

~ ~

'efieotivenes 8: •

- 41-

The SPTAC was lilunched in Iate 1979. In !tse' f 'there is abRolut:ely nothing wrong with a labour movement campatgn designed to getting the Act removed, 'Or st least l"eooel"ed ineffacU"-e. In fact, a provides an OOU~eLle:tlt example of how it Ie pnsstble to ~ raf.ae Irelaru:P in the labour move ruenL The PTA ie used to oorl"orlse the Iria,h communi:ty in Britliiln and to harras tra.de unionists.

~"1 y rank and if ttl trade untonl Sots. Labour Party membera and o:he. r R are opposed to it 01' at leaat uneommtted to its use. They might wen su.pport f!m.ch a eampalgn, It would not, could not be a surrogate for M, anU-1mperinliHt

oUdarUy move me!1.t but it could and should draw such people t()"i'I~Q:rds such a movement. It would, 0-1 GOU:r-ss! benonsense to make H. a oonditiorl of

work in a eampatgn agaLlBt tho PTA that mHitltnts be eonsetous snit-imperIa.iots or support the rtght of the nattonallste to re91et arms in hand. But work a!oD.geid thoBe miUtants agaJnst the PTA would glve U1iI every fJPpOl~:lty to ,",lin toom over. t:n addition. 1t would be a measure of th.a success of such a cllmpaign

thJ!t the: revolutionary wing could rellnqateh USI Ol'lBl1isati.onal control by

drawing in refo r m19 t de lega t.a,s f1"o m bade union and La. bcur Party brano hea, wMIa maximising its pol~~cal influence.

This is not how the BCP vi,ewed the SPTAC. Its aims were -set out as ioUo'Ws;

. liThe campaign has three hnmediaw Ob'SCtiV8S. Fll'"st~ to . organise defence f'Or victims of the PTA b,y means 'of legal

!lId, p:l:cketl Blld publicity. Secondly,. to obitatn and ·dieam.irlRte lnfo:rma.ttonabouf the use of the PTA •. ~ • 'l'bil'd~ and most :hl1po:rta.nt1y~ to playa part in buildtng an ant!-impe:rJaUst movement Rg,ainat the Irish war in. ,the British working claBO !~9)

The fh'st two aims would form the basis of any PTA campaign. Yet tbe:re ts a orippling limitation to the eampalgn wilen they are Blmpty 1~ at that level. The RC P r 8 se ota rlnn v tew of the Labo'U r Party prevents the m co. tnp!ll.igntng around a very hnportant demand, namely. the repeal of the PTA and. in part1cular~s call on the Labour Party to tnelude a manUesto comm1ttment

to serap it.. Wi thO'u.t mcbt'Us t ng -the ens rgy of ae this ta to thta end 1:1. monga t othe l'S a vital 9!~llBive aspeet of the cQlnpalgn is lost, tea.dersare not put to the

tese, and the ea mpaign is for the moot part reduced to .9 ltdnim.:e.l, defensive oampa,igni whtcn leaves the politioal inltta.~ive 1n the bands of the state.

As n complement to the minimum. prugl"a rome, the, declaraelon of ,alms haa

a maximum progra rome, tth@ buUdlI1g of an anti-imperialist movel~ene. W1mt does this mean? It Is very unlikely that refortni9ts~ pRrticipe.t1ng in a campalgn aga.:me t the PT A would be l!Iublootfve antl- i mper-l a Usts fro mtlre outs at. l}:reBumably~ people who did not supp.ort tTroops Out NOWf were exuluded from SPTAC? Even tboilgh we think that would be wrong it would be tbe only pri.'1cipLed. conclusion to be drawn from the third aim of SP'IAC. In. fact, behind this rather general third aim is something dhlgether' more de ma.nding, and certainly something tbat would guarantee tl e non-partielp,ation of even the

DeBt reform!s.ts oppcsed to the PTA. One editol'ial in the 'next stcp~ !trguod;

!tThe labour mQvament conference on Irefand caned by the SprAC in Coventry on March 14th will be an important

stage in ~.de.m:Ung a wo!'kjn~ class outlook on the Irish war

In Bnmin ~ On no ot'he r que s tton :I.e ths pro lete rian poe i tlonunconditional support fo!" the repUblioan movement-eo sharply

countcu'po6ed to the bourgeois view. "(HI)

- 49 -

MoreOV6r~ in t'be same Iasue, Dave aa.1awcrthy (Rep) Btated tnact;

"The G OVBntry C onfe renee has been ~a lied by the .~PT AC with, .BI. view to drive th class ccllaborarton policy out of the TUC. ,.

Now 'the sectarian logic has been ioade abaolutely 'clear, nobody can :renrudn

in doubt. To be part of a campaign 'against the PTA it 1.9 neof'lssallty to support all a.spects of l'epublio~n vlo!ooce and be ,'l!'eaily an Implacable enemy of TUC pou.cy ,on Ireland. Thus it precludes In advance serioml mi11;tants who rem:am unconvtneed on tuse last hVQ points. 1'he SPT A,e J then ~ was 11@ver about the PTA at all, it was 11 front organisation for the' Rep to draw in the least organised and tll~ unwary. By blurring the. d!sthultion betw~el!J the fasiro:s of

,s, i"eIVollltion:ary orgtm.iaaUool1 and these of a more Um:l.ted~ yet prIncipled lntlattve~ the Rep and the SPTAC did a great dtservioe to the labour.movement ,and squa:n de red the chance 'of o r,~llnil ing an effec tive anti - PT A OR mpa.!gn. By its ultra-left stanoe it9.Uowed the TtrC to easily d'latance ttseU from a genuine campaign against the PTA. Not that the latter would have been Ukely. Jmt it could have prevented them them flC'ting in Q. draconian fashion against thoBle

who were oppoetng the) us~ 'of the PTA. by depriving fb.eT1JC of some oftoolr most ·eff'ecUve politi.oal ammun1tlo'n. The absence of a aertous campnlgn on

this Issue has ,dso let the bt-unnnal ab£!tainers in the L&bour Party (when the va,t;e for P1.'A reneWal. comes up) off the hook. SUch is the sterility of ,the seetarlan ~

Yet as Trotsky never ceased to rendf~d us whel"ev,er !:!!eot1i:rinlilism was to, 1E, f,oun,d Us political twin-,opporlu:.t,::I.Bm- was to be seen lurking clcae by. The Rep have not es,Q,91ped this logic. Because the SPTAC v>~a._8 the Rep It could not involve leOOu,r movem.e-f.It leaders Or' bodies in it on an equal basta, A real untted front requires actten, raqutres real forces to be drawn into the clI.mpaJgn by tbose leaderd wbo suppcu."t U. That Ie the cost we tru!lke the reformists pay for our w.ctlcalcow.protn]a,e. Th.eSPTAC could not do this. AU it could, and did, do,

wa.s to, R.dvertls€! Us existence and SllY1 'Take it; or leaveW to the labour movenumt.

ThJe was the attrtude of tt.e SPTAC towards tbe Irish march they crganlsed in September 1981. a twt,fch on the 'rue Confel'enc,e. Its sponsoI's Included Ken Livings1rone. We have !!lean told, correctly, wally ttmas by t.he ;Rep Umtt'his man ,is Dot ,an ftnU imperialist (See K S. No.2S &. 31). What then are people

to make of Llvings.tane's SUppol't for the marob 011 the TUCt a ID!lrch whi,ch us 88 ita political basts everything the SPTAC atood fo:r~ up to and including tunco-ndttional suppot"t for the national BberaHon s trllgg Ie , • We are forced to conolu.de toot it WI19 a deeply cynice.l and opporl::un~st lllRllOO1uv:re by the He p to genera.,te Interest !.U:Id l"e'spe-ctio1Htyfo1" the march. It was, a deal between Livingstone and tbe BCP. Llvingstone lends his name and asks for DO control over the ,t!vent. The ReP in return allows, Livingstone to dress himself UPI &8 an a:nU-hnpel1aUst and to notrequired to do a.nythllig wbich testa his suppert suoh as mobtlise theaeover whom he exerts some Influenna, Blank cheques atl around.

Thie opportunism became mora pronounced during 19823.8 the UmUs of it purG,ly sectarian drive against the T1JC became apparent. The cha.nge from SPTA.,C to lF~I m February 1982 signified northing new save the realisation

-4.9 ~

tbs.t the P'l'sv@nUon of Terror:I!Bm ,'ot was becomrng pedpherql to tM SPTAC. The 8PTAC was no match. for the TUe; tM '!,db'O,-leftis,m guaranteedthar It would make no real he~dway into tho€! t!",B,~le untons, making itself too eosy a ml"gel:. Or. the ethee hand, the RCPtspoUth~s will ensure that ~t liS nl~ys @uler to wAke Inroads into t'lle leut organised seoHotts !' into tnoeC" tSy6ra who are least weighed dOVlD by the tr,R.dUionB of iabouristn (eg blaukst youtlmJ B tudenm ~) The hunger stl'ikeB of 19 B Q /81 :I. mp res Be d the N:C P by the lllil mber Qf youth toot snowed suppo:rt ell). fiecroUment is gelt6 ra.Uy €las far among t'hese layer9. For fbeee reasons tbe SP'rAC W&B ~heJ'i a new coot of paint and reDR me d the IF M.. :u has the 8 a me pe lUtes m s ! ts pre de ees ser a nd tbe an me oppol'tunis t hlV:!. to to the unwa l'Y ~

r! •• c any !3uppoml' of Irtsh Freedom rein) whatever tbetr pcHtfcs.l'· afft Ua.UOD are welc 0 me to i o:tn our move mentu A (II)

The :He P pulls the s'trl~g:B~ you jump., T'ir..e Easter 1982 delegattonto n~l'f'Y and:

B@U'astwCB built for In a e~ mtlar opportunf.st fashion. It WUf! neiHter mCl'nitJed t~ or SPQruilor,9h~ps 8oug:ht on Ute. bMis of ,aqlU-impa:rffiliam. On the eentrary, the youth 'were lnvited. mgo: merely on the oosis of 'seeing what Hs: like' and laboult MGVe D:1.enioo dies invited ro support it on the s a me Iln.es ~ It anpears as thClQgh. tile ghost o"f TOM bas returned to Mllilt t.oo :Rep A

Tbe'loe can be no dou.bt that in aperiod wen there 'ta very HUle BoHdal!'~ty acUvlty 1111. eVidence oV"er~hB Irish atruggje, the org.Wl~9aU,o:nal v"lta;Uty o,f the, IF M app0- rSi ai€H::lu.c~ve. But a.ctivlty.~howeveI' fre:nzjed~ ca.tmot be a Buos,utute fora co:r:re,ct poUUcal ori011tlltlon. ID'ntH the IFMand Us warden the Rep l'ejGcte

t~0 metbod upon wbtah both 'Were fOW'Jded they will be unable to buUd an anU:l:m.pel'hllist soUdlllrny movement within the etrQllg'holdg of the working elass.


(1) l'tne. next SNP' No .10. (2; Ibid.,

(3) Se e F.. RIc hardA ~ '1 No E qui v'ooati on U 1m ~ Revolu.t1 pna_ rl Cw mun iB.tPa.e!_!'_~ ~ No~2~

(4) 3ee,fQr example, the piecefl tn • WiJrkel'!._E_9.!!~~ NOD. B & 370D Wal"ren-

pOint and BanykeUy~

(5) tthe D;ext atept No. 4.

(6) See. tthe next 1lIte.f;lr .No. E!

(7) 'tme next step,f Mo. HI. I'My we gtve uneoedinonal suppa.rt. u

fS) For a.n~sseS9IiIJ.:entof the political :failures -of the IRA see W. P.no. 27 ~ (9) tth:e llext step? No~ 2

(10) rtbe~ bext stoep' :NQ.tO

ill) ~'the next step! No.2 3

-51 -

FOUIRTH: ;- TER, ': HESE,S ON ·RE' (1944)


Vested Intere,sts and too SoI"dar

Eri tain" f.,u :from d~ri.ving $up~r-profi ts out of her occupation of the six :Nortn...Ea..stern cQunties {_1Z Irelandf suffers a. consid~:table financial loss; for I whillO!' it is t rue that there rue Bri ti.sh bu.sinesSHlen with lnt,.,n:-ests in Ulst~r t it isa1so ce'rta.in that these interests would be cO:!J'.!pletely compensated, <md a. :residue retainE!d, i~f the British Exchequer wecre to withdraw its su.bsidies towards the upkeep or the swollen Orange bureaucracy .and the lllaintQt'lanc~ of. social services in Ulster at the British Leve l., Even in wartime Ulster is ~ depressed area, Despite the 4O~<XJO skilled workers driv'~n to t'indwork in

Bri tish war industries there are still 25.000 Qf:ficially un~loy~d

out of a total ~~lation of a million and a quart2r. peacetime una~ ployment is considerably higher than in a.'1;Y crtbar part of the: United Kingdom., several million pounds sterling are fIll..11c:t,erl annu.a11y irr)iil

the Rnglish taxpayer for thl? upk~ of the Orar..ge puppet statelet.

'The fact is, howeveJr. that British overhead expenses in Ulster fall into p:rrocisely the same cat.egory as do grants to the armed :fo:rces, or the police - e-ve-n when these ~I.mses tak.e the form not of direct outlays on bebalf of th.e colossal Ul.~ter police force~ and other

sect ions of trus st at e, but of maiqtenance of soc ~:<il service 5 and the. provi~dan of orders to Ulster industry dudng the- ·'no:tt!iiitl t cklpression pel'iQds. Sri tain maintai1'l.S its gar.ri son in Ulster ~ not primaXi ty as

a. means o:f coercing. the Irish paople" but to !.xlI.lntet'a.ct the' pos,sibility of a .rival intpet"iali SIll ~stablisrdn] a_, roili tat',Y bridgehi:::!<l,d in- tM

Sri tish I sles. The occupation eng,enders sentiment s ,of revol t; ho!.~evel' ~ and necftssita:tes the preserva.tion of forderr, ie~ the coercion ,of the na.tionalist pqt~ulation •••

The Orange boases and bureaucrats, :tor their part, nead to h..ave thei.r fing~:rs directly ,dipped in England~ s econcmi,c pie. rha.t i'", why they are given representation in the Westminster Parlia:rnent~ At a. time

when great monopolies largely derive tbeir super-profits by a. bar,elyconcealed plundering of t.he Excbequer, and when worthlihile orders CCiOO: only to thos~ directly in th~ swim~ it isa life and death qu6lstion

for Ul$t,2l" capi talist~ to m.u.ntAina direct c:o:nnectionwi th tile

British state. That is why all De Valera~ s prceri.sas uf virtual autonO;IW .for t.he North within a united I:t'elan~ i.f only Stonoont would agr'ee to sever its direct connection with Britain, ha.v~ gone unheeded. wi thml t St ate re'pll::esenta It ion. at \o,TE'j'!;;,tnrins'ter th.ei r in.d.listr:ie s woo Ld di e,

- 52 -

f'0l' out of sight is out of mind. If Sri tail:! sa.crifi c::er 1 them in a de~ with De Valfl'lI."& they 11.'ould look for a n~ .. iunper.i';)'list paymaster~

Orange r 101' OI.Uy t has its wo:dd market price.

Ei reand the :fJo.rdEl'l:

A::; her neutrality in the War underscores, Eire is de facto a sovereign Irish Republic., notwith$t;mdifl9 th2 slim pretence of British O::xninion status kept up by Westminster. British Uher.1iHSfI:l. boMght out the .ab$,e.nt'el2 landlord class (,with th~ Ixish peasant st own money to be sur~2) t,o sta \f'e off a. .Jrevolu t ic:n,;u-y c5ei ,ZlH:"e of t h~ 1 and. The Eas t~:r ~let;rl.;, rL!:I,in;I and t:~ Anglo-Il1'ish w.:u: brought an end to the :foreign occupatdon of the Soutb. Under ttJ.e ~ Va.lera regi.t'n.e fiscal autcm~y has eoabl~d

a hOost of petty IIIlatWfacturing' inwst:ri,es to stnlggl~ into b~in9.

Saddled w.i.th exo:d::d taut inter'i:!s1: ratli1!5 'on eapi tal borralloo ,{Earn Bri t.Lsh i:nve sto(!:' s. and dep eJ:loont on Brit i sh mm,LOpoli ~~ for all primary mate1"i~ls~ 'costs have been exce$~ively bigh; and the dwindling, impo,verishedpopul;\1.tion cannot provide a. mal:ket sufficient to ab~orb a.ta plt'oi'i'table leve'l the output of lab,our-::oaving machinery in use - elsewhlalr~~ Alreiady th!?pa'th.l;!tic 1 i[]wst-rialisa.tian i peIiod,., begun

only a few yeaJ:"s 3"90, is at a clo$e~

A ehroni~ unfavourable bal1anc.e of trade~ rapidly dwindling foreign a.sS~II:!i a t.'alling biJ:'thratE~ mass une:mploymerrt andwh~lesale bni9lt:at.ion to England jI;~e'!a.led t-hat the inc:urable ~ladi.e$ of world capt t ~ ::Lst ec:Ql'lIClIIlV we're eat ing. a.t the vi tal s of the· new sDvereign sta.telet. o:fEire~ Th~ Seccm.d World Wa:r has only accentuated this disinteg.lCa.ti,OO. Tcda,y there aJl:'e a l'nitndI:ed t~.and \U1.mmploylllld wi thin thlii! ::ulCQUnt,:ie~ ·of Rir~:t while scoroes 0.£ thousands of others h:,aVoe been. t'o:rcedby un~.loyment into Uri tish wa.r i:tiwstdes or the .British

.llmed fiorce$1. The export. of men, $eniling ha'oe part, of the pl:oceeds of tneil:' ea_'rnin9s~ has come to it'ival th~ ~g.ricul 'hn~al 9xpo.tt industry in importance.

lri.sh bou.rgeois na.tionalism had a_ln_,.u:iy exhau~ted its ;;l11s510n as .;51 vehicle fortbe deve:lopme.nt of the prodlcti ve foroes b~:fore ,anyrea1 d~2lopm.ffi1.tt.ook: place,. :Ente:rnati,onal socialism aJ..one can msu:re a fresh upswing, in prodtct,ion :for Ireland; and it is precisely fox-Uris :reason that the Ol!1{2uncaIIpleted t·a51( of the bourSeo1s re\l'olutiont nattoroa11,mification~ can only be !:Olve.d by the proleta:dan revolution. The inclusdon of the six Ulster ecunt.Les within the frarn~Dr'k o·f the Mtional state would only rost,~n the dec1i~e of" the already stagnant n~Vjf indu.st;ries in t,h~ North wi tiwut fucth£:ri:t:'llfl the dev2lapmlO!nt of Sou,tlmrn im:i!lstry to any appreciOlible: cliel;lree. National unification

!.md.ec:r the ca.pi talist system, by plU:JlI;Iing th.e hostile p::E"otestant

prol~ aria t of th-e nort hern indu st:d!as i:hto permanent lUlemploynlent ~ Would e'i ther lrsa.d straight to t~ victory of -the !E>QCia.l revolu1.ion or to I;asci5llF:l. There ~ld be no middle way~.,.,

A1: times in the rl2Cent past the nationalist fervour of the CCllllwti. people of Ireland IW s ,t hav@ ~~ed dimJ or dea.d~ not only to the casual. obse:tver but w the 'OI.'OIkers themseh'~s~ But it onl~l la,y domJ.a1lt, r~ady to blaze into li;feagain~ For the £am(1J.~ pa.t.J;-;i,iot:ism of the lrh,h pwple ia sctIii!'thing mt);rethan ,a_ 1.radi tiQna1 halT"lovsr, or a state- 0'£ mind induced by bourgeois propaganda. It is an e!.llotion of l:ewlt~ et1!Jenderoo by cen:turies of n~tion._"_l degiraw.tiQnt kept-alive by the knowle-dije t.hat. yelSt'erooyl s powel"ful imperialist opflres5o,r still

- 53 -

occupf.es a part of the national territory and iT'.ay yet 1.3V a claim to. the Sou tho of I l'dand~

When Tom Williams was h~ed by the Str,u;"m::;mt :r~im2 la.st year • flag $; welt'€! fiOWll at hal.f mast tilroughOl,.lt Hire" the shops of the tflaln IA.tblin thQ;(,oughiares cl0500 as a mil: k oef resPect and pr.otest l:"a11ies~ organised by the Reprieve COtntld ttee~ ~ere held tiu:ol.lghout the country. Th~ threat of conscript in Ulster in 1941 created a crisis in Hire overnight and a wave ofaxJ;ti-Brit·· sh 5,en.timent swept OV2l" th~ SGuthern worke.rs~ the w.()Z'kel:$1 pat;rioti$l1 is their pridQ in 1:he:lxage.-{.11d fight .ag ainst .i.mp£'ri ~i sm. Thi s is an ern'mb HI;;f sent imerrt, n.ottfili thstanding the poi sonou s bourgeu:i. 5 chau vini srn mix~d Lrrto it by thp. capit.a1 ist poU ti tlian!3 and t Md r Jb'erot.'!Il.ist and stal it:d. st hang ~ s-on who a.t all time6 g~ek to TIl.anipulat~ the freedom-loving aspit'atiotl$ of the wm:ke':t 5 for their own re.actionary ends"

The rich rnncher s and rentiers 0l.1"~ pro...B,ritish. The small f'aL1Ji~rs and. the basi,c sec'tion ,of th~ baur9eoisie wh.i.ch is interested in p:t·oduction . and tra.de :for the c:bnest±c market look 'to E.n.gla.nd with rltrong foreboding s·. Bri trio is still a bouJitge-oi s daoo-.;r aey and it is not so. ea SlY just yet to get dorm to seizi.ng the Eire ports; for, b~sides thE: huge ttw.l!lben"l of Irish in B:dtish inrustl:'i~s and the army~ the English li'>U-.rke:rs in uniform. would not go wi.llingly into an aggression against the t almos.'t i1nglisht people ,of' Eire.

Cathol.ie . Chu.rch t.$ ~'a$ S Ba.si, I":>

If Ireland has hitherto proved to be the most i.n;'Pr~l1.abl~ of aU tlile Vatican!s cita.dels .. this is not dl~ to accident.. Du· ta] cemuries of national deg:tadation the social cl . .)~ses 1l'\l--en~ mixed into a COfl!;l1l:0D C~tholic cement by thE! Bltitish. who persecuted the native Irish ostRl:;ls:iilly on il:CC\:Unt c.t th-eh C~tholicist!l~ ~ ~ Sentiment ag~:ins.t the f'o:r-eig.n .imperiali st s wa$ a l\'iCl.jJ 5 Uppe-rnlO,st and the mass~:: s encased thel'llselves in t~ t"itu.us and doct.ri!J£5 of th'1:! morther Ch1.l!"ch as in a sui t of a.rmou:it' in 1 ieu of m.ore mat 2rial mean s o,f d~fenr.:e.. Ca toolic f'anatici.sm the tl)..or~ easily became synonoll.OUS .'lith the spirit of outrag~d nationality bec~Hse, unlike in the othpr countries, the Irish priestllood never directly functioned as an ,exploiter. ..

FOlt 7'00 years Ireland Was ,]I. colony" Ai;!ainst this" for ba.;::ely two decades an o.ocel'tain independence has l.asterl for the South; and, dur.ing this time, the fledgling Eire state! p-t hilS been 5~rlulously inculcatitl9 a. psychology of" r>-.ational exclusiveness; among th.e m""s$es by rosteri!'i.l;l a.U tho 5~ i deo.log ica.l di 5 tinct i,ons and c1.1 1 tux al pur ~-Ui t s lI!nich set the Irish apart fm'll the neighbou.dng English natiCln.:J.i ty.

It is well to :r~ber in. this connect.Icn that in its long-.ctrawn-out Hade- war with Bdtain the Fi.Mlna. F?iil Gove:rnmelrt ref;eiv~d the backing not only of the bourgeois and peasant intel:'est~. involved~ but also of the majority of t.oo workers" So long as iJJlperia ism remains intact

in the Ninrth and a s2riou s. threat to the S3tlth, and untH the workers :find a revol1.ition<uy socialist leader.ship, we will h_ave to recIwh with

'the {JO'\rer and pre!,ltige of the priesthC'Od.., ••

On the' gu,:r:f ace the cathoUc church looks u:nass.;;;.i],ab lti. y~t its ccm:ing eelipsE' can be dec:e~d pr~;tsaly whei."e the a.p~/;!:ranc::2 o£ 5tt:'~ngth ~ems grea.t·est. A pi.ctl.uce of Christ on the Cross pinned to a FaJ.ls {{Cad window is a dffinons'tra;tion against thla l.mpeJl!ia.list status quo" but


the Chtu:ch ,~aJ'":tna,t lead. the ch;;J.!'l9p.~ The t'qlublican work¢.f.'swill throw away t.heir icons O:I.S soon as the idea1s of sociali5t internationalism begin to tak:2 shape wnong them.

To expose the treacherous role of" the alleg edl}' neutral Clrri5t:ian ideology is an es~ential ~a.rt of the. s.truggle to, devehJP al"eiJ(iluti.cmary consciOUsrleSBiUllOrlg the workers", ~.

The ccwu.ardly Ein~LIDO'L\r Party ~ on th~ athEr hand, has consistently pursued a s~l policy of appeas~nt t.owards theCa.th olic church, even go.in;l so far as to claim th.at. Its programme is in conformity

wi th t~ Pope;'1 s d'I.a:rt.er of Labour.,

The Church will be a. colos5~1 '~eight 011 the ~ide of cou];!ter-l"i2volU'tion .. It is one of tb;l main plt"opaganoo ta.$ks of OlJ.lr mov~nt to. explain this to thewcE~IE!::r$,~ E\lery insolent ime:de:reru:e. wi in the ,affairs of thE! l.abour movement mu st: be ,aomat t ~d ~ Ira paz:ticul ax the tole o:f th2 Va;U.canin tfiepres~nt B:lropeaJl dtua,tion must be mercilessly

~s!ed~ It wculd be" treason to :!;jucialisrn to keep silent on grounds

of' e:xp edi erlC:Y .•

In every important 5 trike th2 bourgeois press is rOr'ced to drop .its spudoosneut.:rali ty~ So likewi.se, in the hundred-ana...one minor

sal' tie-50 l·e~ up to the deci si ve :revolut ionary r,;.t1:WJ91e f hlm]er marches j< strikes., dUring ,eve;ry spat.e of whic hi thE!. bourg ~i sic ~d its henchmen will take panic and cry tWQ·lf~, t.he role o:f the clergy will bocCftemo:t:e <md mo.nl' obvi.OY.$ ~ ~ 4

rt isrE!folfmiSIl:l, hoJ..din:.;::! out no hope ot escape Zl!)0111 "the drab !I;;""CI'Utin.e of p!!:Iverty f t.hat tU:£"rlIS t.l'J@ backwal'd ma.ss~s (;liver to O!O-m,elTVatism and cle:ricalism and in a crisis makes them $torm t:rooper5 of the- ];:'~action~ Notwi thstanding its tir ades against. too set 31 ini st bureauc 1;" a.cy , to which it .ilttl'ibut.es the· orlgina.l sin of th~ Bolsh€'Vi.k Rr2volu.tion" it is p.rec:..isely thanks to the opportunbt pol.itic:5 of stalinthJoJ.t the P.a_p!C[cy :is, still a worl.d ~e:r despite its notQil'laJs 2'ole in ~.nn

and ~:ts~her~~

r~:r, the ~a of stal1.ni5m. and r.:r.fonrlsrn i s dra,wi~ to a clo~~ ''!he grlE!at c1ass stllbuggles impenctiJl9 throughout th~ world will 'find

an echo in the lremotest ool'ners of :l::u.:ral h:~land~ Certainly r.eactinnary cledca.1i5l1l win still :ret-ain .::.. .t:oll'midable following., but the majioil'1 ty wi 11 be won :for the revol.u 'tion ~

The Nationalist Wo;t:keT5

At present the living s'tandarcls of even the ~the~r1. wo"Cke:l;'S cbpend

in th.e last resort upon t~.e British Ernp1re~ It is th~ Colonial

~ij['e which bolsters up p~'Ofits~ ~al~ies and wages in Engla.ru:lj Urus pew tting the absozptio[1 at a. t:'p-1.ati vely high. ~k~ level of EiI'e~ s agricul tUlt'al ~rt, on which the remainder of the econeed.c stzueture rests:., Fl:'eed'om. 01' a.ccess to the Sri tish market and state Inri.ependen:ce espec ially in .rega.rd to f'i seal polic.y f are the twin r1'£'Oeds of the Eire bm.J1'900is:ie and, sa l~:mg as they c~t surmount cap! tali sm~ also of thewo~keZ'5~ ir.e r-brtherrn mationali Sot worM;::;'s, on thec1:he-r [lalla,

are as ec::>t:HlOmIica:lly d:epe:m'ldentupoo, direct inoprpo.r.ation into the

Un! ted Kin:;;J,dr.J;n. as, are t~ P!;"oi;,estan't wo:rke:rs. In 'the days o£ 5elf~ suffi'ci,el1t - peasant tillag~ the: Catholic masses had an economic st~tn f:iJghting :for an Ireland freed f:rom th~ British gdp on the

- 55-

:land~ Today, bCl/ll~veI:1 when aLl t:raoos and occupations draw their life blood from. the heavy inwstrie$! which only survive by virtue of Ulster 1 s pooH tica.l u:ni ty wi til Sri taint' a. boo.:tgeoi5 united Ireland cou Ld only bring pauperisation to it smost a:rdp.trt partisans - the Northern nationalist worker.s~

The Tory regime at stormont is the oldest in Europe - preceding MJ.$solini 1 s aS51J.;;1lption of po¥'Jer it has cutla.sted th~ Reman D,lce. The main props of i.ts :r:uh~ are: (a.) its mass :following amongst- the protestants based an ~;titaini 5 :financial bribes and th~ spp-ctre of repubUcanism; (b) ~,onsti til enc y gerrym,a.nd~dng; {c} the' C1vil

Au thad t y (~€'Cial Pmoor s ) Act s -\'.t1ich. gi V9 aJJ:no st u.nlbui t¢d power to the' colossZl.l lU'IDy of the police.

I~land was ptlrti t Loned bo/ to@' Rr i ti sh in such 3. way ag to Oil $sur~ the' Tory (_lniarti Silt Party of a foo..J.-proo:f majo:ri ty ovar its nationalist opponents. .':::J"'to:rmant Ln its tun, g~xrym.andere<..i the six ooun.ty clectoral seats so €ff~tiv~ly that the r~tionalist voters can only obtain a

mere fraction of the ;rep~e5entatian to. which theit numbers entitle' them. In COl1ssqu'e!ooe abstention i-rom. th~ vot~ has became a. tradition in. l'll:any R:epl.tblican ar~as~ $0' DAlch 50 that a unionist can get Into Stormont by l'i1U$tering thP. merest handful of prntestantvotes.

Only a. fE!!ll1 of th~ falJ;"-rea.ching power.9 vested in tb.e Civil Authority can be listed bere'~-

(a) By police pl"OCl<ltllatiolfl ptJ.blicaticms may be ba..iJ::rled.~ ~rling s and demonstrations forbidden and a state of cu:tfe\!Ol imposed.

(b) The police bold the right to enter and se-arc:h praf'...i5es without a wa.:traIlt and to confiscate or destroy property.

(c) Arrest and internmmlt TILa)l b.e ordered on suspic: ons ,

(d) Habeas corpus is suspended a.."ld inte~nl?e$ and their r~lath+es rm:ay be prevented rl"OOl seeill'J or cOltlt'l'Unic,:!.ting "'lith one anothB'r ~

(e) Otle of the most 5i ni s1:~:r c1 au s€!s re 1 a tBS t Q the :right ()I the Civil Authority to wi L;}101d the right of inqu.e5t~

A j a.iled or int~rn~d RC2ptJhlican is autCiJl;aticalJ.y disqu,a.li.fied frOOl obt.aiuing his; family a110'JiattC~5 under tb.e Unanploynu;mt Instl.rance Acts on the 9rounds that he is not available xorwork.· A for-.illet: political prisoner Or Repub1.ican susnect; find;; it ext:remely di.f:ficul t to 'keq> etr!ploYfUC2.nt O\'>rillg to the police pril.ctice or. wanting enployer.5 .against them. lm. isolated incident may kindle wi th un~'?Cted suddenness

into a cd .. sis during the cour se o:f ~~'h;i_ch hundreds of sttsp8Cts are :t'oondecl up and scores of fao1liliesJ depri ved of a breacNiinn~r ~ are menaced by t ~ sped :t'e S of hung.~r t;l.l1d debt... Ihi S e>!plains why the barOJlllWter of parliamentanr contests registers such startling overnight changes.

At the Last L.mour Party Con£erfdnce it was ;tQ50 ved that the Party should take the initiative in immgw-ating a. Northern Ireland Co1'J.nci~ for c..ivil Uberties~ TIri.s is a welccme dev'eloplflen-t from the days g:f Midgley. ~ I'rQtskyist JIlOvemtm1: has copci1c:ted a. long campuign f-or th~ s:ettim up of such a council to canbat the injustices meted ·aut under the ~2cial P()Im;!J:'s Acts. rotllitant:;) in the l...3bour Party, and the w'Orke:rs g,eflelt.u.ly.. 1iIr\l$·t see to it that 1.];&.s decision is ~eally implemented by the bu.ilditli;i of B. lQerruin~ Civil Librax'Hi!e (buncil supptJrtgd by and :rep:tesenta'tive o.f eVH:ry' section ot! th~ 1~U' move-« ment ~ Mil! 1:aMS .in the BiI-e 1 i3bou,r movEment must demand s:L."'rilar measures ..

By bringing into the clea.r light of day the tu.l1~ unimpeachable facts on evexy Case of" .a.l.bi tr a:ry search, aT:re st and in timida t ion; by ~ng full :fat:iU ties:for inqu,iry into ~'Jery case of" alleged polic'ei intimidation. and bruta1.i ty;: by sprea.dil:'li;;l i tlfm:lIlation Tegatditg th'El' unsani tru:y 'OV!!i3'rcICf3Gded conditions iJ.IJde'.r which political prisoneJL's J.:ive,; by exposing the farce o:f the police-influenced Int e:t"nee 5,1 Appeal.s T~ili!.UlM; _ and. in li!ho:rt, by making a public di.splay of $;~J.e$ Q'fth~ B:r i tis.h ! c:mmocr a.r:y! b€'.ing rt!~tiild out to nunclreili;: of Ulstel!: citizens., a Civil Liberties Cou:ncil has a re .... olutionary role: to peIr:fO!lE~ It can ha5t~n the downfall o.f the. reg:im~.. Ii!: can set on fir!];! the oonscience of the whole cOllll11W1ity, shamd.ng a,1]d shocki.ng even the Prmtestant pe:tty bourgeoisie into protest ~

The fight for ci ",11 .1ibe:rt ies i is an int eg raJ. a.nd i..'mu;~nsely illipGlrtant ,aspect of -the cl~$s struggle. It is inst.rocti.ve" th~r'efOl"e" to

pe'ro~i v,e frau toni S a.rJj'J1_e lru:Jw' l{)wthe 51:: alini Sit 'l'C1Inegades have ~rik in th.eir clowni.sh eagerness to act &5 sycophi2.tlt 5< to To:ry Unioni gIl), ~ stalim $it policy J as is we:ll knc:Iwn~ is to' give undivided attlent ion to

'r de:nocLac'y~ 5 t ba.ttle against Hi tlel!:.., ~lffiIecr. thetYl:arulY endu,lred. by th~ Ulsteilr minod ty is too near at nand <md af'f'ects too la:rge a ~er o'£. wOEkers to b e 'p~ssed over in silE'ocei,. At thei:lr rec.;m,t Congre 55'1 th~i'efore, the Stalinists passed a. r'esolutionl ~~1Il1,dingr an end to (nd:igious)< s~taxian discrimination in th~ hi:ring of labour and

t :blSist.ifig f on varLws othell;' laudibl,e; c~~s in th~ direction of grea.ter justice for the Catholic workp..rs~ J-bwever",. this WaS a. JreS(l<lurtiOrJ for th~ l:'.ecot-d pql.y~ Cilvil liberti~5 ca.nnot be wrested from. the V@5.ted inte:r2sts wi.thout the ~imum e-:ffort of ,ill, united pl'o.letlU'iat, bu.t complete and unconditional :irni2pend~ frcm the Oz:aDJe capitalist state .is the preraqui.si te for p.X"oleta:dan uni.ty., The Stalinist~t hm~er, are the roost ,5te~dfast and uDSlVendng supporters .of the Ol:'aDJe Jro<ry Cabinet: ~

ActlJ,ally J the St alini$t Pat:' tv is comp'.let ely opposed to the exten~iol1 of e:i vi.1 lwedi as .. , It 5 1': eciP2 fo rending di 5cd.mlna.t ion a.g a.i.n5t th2 Ca.tooli.c """ :tkiell:' 5 ,e1ear.ly amcunts tn thi s e Ilpu tthe Pmt~.5tant wol:'kers in t.he sam~ boa.t: abolish civil .libe:r-ties 1"o.r them alsolu This can clea.rly he 61eenfrom the Ma_:I'cb 13th .. 1943 issu.e o,f' their pape1' 'I Un! tyt . In th~ f.tont pat!p-edi tQ:ri.u~ while whole-heartedlY plro:fessi:rg agreement on t.he need .for speci.al poweor S t they p€,rmittoo them,!;el.ves to indulg~ ina. light criticism at' th!i! secta:!rian cha.:rG'tcter IOif' the Civil Au thor! ty (Specia.l Powl;!r s) Act So,. and- withcu. t £odhrightly demandiJlli] the aboli tiona£' t.h~6e acts - Sli.:lggest~d that the Bd t:i sh Emer9 ency POWIU'S Act Wall d be .Cl,. 'i ai l." eI t weapon in the hands of th~ gove1t'nDI!2nt ~ 'Thi s is ecrui val ent tOI a. demand to aboli 5h h:angin:;l in :fa.vour cd electrocution.

The ~nist Part.x ;2f IrE!1a..'1d

protestant-Republican workiDJ class uni, ty can b,e forged only on ths anvilL of the d a.ss war ~ Na1.icruU incWpenmmce \rill be won ~i ther as a. by-p~ct of' the hi.shand British t'e'VQ1utim1.a,lr,Y struggles or not. at alL Fina11y.~. ,only the victory o.f socia.tismon a. "IOr.io scale will end nat ;kmal llpp:rf!s:eoioll .!o1:il've::r. Th~ 'trot !iityi st mov~ili!fLt a.loulO! :fight s unde1; the banner of international socia].iSlIl and tlIer,eton~, alCln€ or all .parti.es and tflndenc..Les Irep.resent s the t m~ nat ional intel:es1; s of the Irlsh~l,*. It alon-e i.s implacabl.e in its hos't.Hi'ty a.1ike to

imperi a.li Sl'IJJ and "to all fonns of cap& tal 1st role; and a.lone i 5 the

- 57 ,_

enemy of ~:ry matll.i'esta.t ion G:f oom::geoi IS i&ology within the :l: ank s of the working clasa,., On the ot.her handJ the ~st Party of ll'~~and - Irish, as i.tis Ccrnnunist, in IO"I~ onJ.y - ~on1U$es1! diSOl:':i~nts, and increases the disunity of' the \'IOridng c.la.ss~ The stalbdst Pa:rty is never p2ll':!!llitt2d to absolve itself :fran a sense af re5pOnsibili ty towards the capi talis t $y5ten. This follmr.rs fzom it s zo Ie as a sa telH. tE' of the: K:r:~in bu reauc:t acy ~

The Kt"Eml.in bureaucz-acy .is fully aware that the social stability of too capitalist countriEs is ~ p!"P-t' e<JUi si te for lts own plunder~s

lroile oveJr the Soviet wOl"ki~ iJla8SSS~ ~'lo'rld revolutiOl.. constitutes an ev'en g:re& telr t]:U'l?",- t to' its V 1:?5 t ed itlt er~st a than Wo:!' Id iropel-ialiS!tl; .for while His pos:~dble to hope that too ant.agonism~ dividi~ the gil::'~a t pow-er s will aJ.W~Y5 dr ive one of the camp 5 o,l' imperialist pret1- atorsinto s.eE1dng an undel'standing with the KESJJI1in~ no bope wbate\~ can be entertained of' the rm.rolu tionaries ma.ki.ng their ~ace wi th bu.:reaucrat.ic tyran:ny. A revo,lutiO'n in any one of tJ~ .)dvancp-d cC!Untr:i~8WOl!Jld act as an in.spira.tion ~d a signal to th~ 8oVi'et masses to break assund¢r the d:ains (1.1' Stalinism. 'lrhl.1s~ under the

tot ali tarian s-talinid regime, t.he Soviet Union is as deeply im.TI.lved as ·1illV of the capitalist camtIie5 in the j14gg1ery ofpow!'?r politics.

It follows. therefore,; that either the stalin r~ime will be in the c.a.mp' of Br:i tish imper.iaU SIT.! or WClxking in c.ol1.aJt,ol'ation~'ii 'th its; (Sd tainl 5)1 im,.oerial.ist ~~es;. and tr:aat t~~tlist Party of lrel.ou:ld will becOImJli tted ffithP--.r to supportJ.n;;;r the Bd tish .ruling cla.ss Or to denagcgic.ally 0fJP0 sin;lthem ~ Howeve~ • ~ si tio.n 00

Sri tish imperialism OO!?S .not mean :for th~ S'talinist Party S.UPl>G'~t fO"l: art iJ1~endGnt proltrta.r:ian stmggle ;for nationa.l<Y1d socia.l f';reedcn~ It simply means that anaUi.a:tlCe ~'.rith the Orsnge didatm';ship on the 'essentials of the '['ory pr01]rmnme, is rraplaced by an attempted alliance wi th the bOtlrgeQi is na t ic~ali st o:tgani sat ion 5 on thei:r: progJ:"aIIIDl~ ~ Oi:le :form of [naiional u:m:tcl iro.nt~ t~.e5 the place ot' anoth2r~ Tll..~t is all.

Th¢ socia.l set-up in NQirthern U"p.land und:ru:btedlV offers the stalinists ami2;'able scope fo~ the creation on POlPer of natioflal fronts to suit .;al pu.rpo$e:s.~ In reality of" ca,lr.s,e either form of th~· so-ca.11r.ad natio!lJaJ. front is of aT~ equally fictitiou~na:tl).re~ 'Ibis h, not to imply that the :fiction is without its p-.ffects; but th@s~ ,ll'e wholly

on the 5id~ of $.;~tariEm disut'.ity. Wha:t happens is this: each fresh t.urn:aboY.t of th2 Stalinists not only leaves the cast e bigotir'Y of the wodcel"s uncharged. but ~tu.a11y leads to a str,enogth.em~ of the bonds of i.deolO9lY uni H.ng them. to t.h~ bourgeois politici~s helonging to, their own p!1U"ti.C1J.l ar sid!1il of" the C oomLu'li ty ~ l'""Ocr instance" ciun;:ingl too peiCicd of the Stalin-Hi. tl er pact the OoIm1l.Wli st Party f s fli %ta. tion

wi th. the natiC'nalist organis.ations had the double consequence of sustaining th;e: l'o'O'l"st illusions ot' the R2puhl:ican p:1'ole't;t!.lt'iatand.., at the game time~ hopelessly alienati~ the Prot~stant wOIke'r5~ iI.mong

the PlOOtes.tants thl2 Stalinist party has r~ister(td f'o:rn:ddabl~ gai.ns OVE'rthe past two yea;rs.~ Metbership has prohably increased seven or ei,~ht-fold. These nev.r .recruits; consist mainly of ~orker andpett,Ybou,n.;Ii'l'Ois el~nts completely Il€M' to poli tics:idI'awn tow8.lbds the

r left' aut of. ad:nir ",:!don £0It' the Red ~ but, IDo>st of' them.~ uneaancipated :fJ:'00Ji tl:N! Qld j ingohtic m~ntali ty ~ Cit!. th~ ,athe:r hand t.h~ strikebreakirg rol.a of the' staJ.irlii.st puty has alienat¢cl m105t of th~ 'expedeool!d industda.l mill tanh 2I:ItIOllIJ the Protestants.

- 58-

In Eire. fiOllowin;;r upon Hi tl~:r'!5 itJ.'iJas:Lc~m of the &:Ni~ l~ Union, the Oo!.mmtnist Pa)6t:y ~ afraid to pJL"odaim openly th~ n'1l\ll policy foisted upon it by. tbe Kranlin ~ the trndlL'lQ of Eire nwtl:ati t:v- qu.ietly

Of s.sol '!Jed .i helr into the Labour P.a.L"t Y ~ l at he.rto, oospi te it:5 impos-i.r.Q t:et:::ot'd of tre~hQr.y ~ stalinism has a.1~';TO!JI·$ brol.(:!IW"11y tried to just:Lfy ihelf in the eyes of the workers;~ In this single epiS'oo.e j,6 cont~ned the wlml'2 PI12C,gdingtwetrty year.5 of stalinist ~emfration; its

poU t i·cal bankrtlptcy atld it:; IDOl' al spin';?12$ sn€$.g • Th~ g:r>ea. tMS S ·of' BoJ.sh¢V'lsro. eensd, st,2d not .merely in its capacity to wi thsta.ud the materi~J_ bl0'W5 Qf l'e.a.ctiatl but even wore~ to swim a.gainst t~ cu;u:~nt oil pcpula;r :f,~eUng~ stdinistII glve~ a few sher t grunts a. n d then

sinks to t~ bottOOl,~

N.e_tJ2!¥'-H:!iln.,2Pd Scci~~ii$ffl

The fundatlliental t.a~$, of nat ion.u.i!1iID aW a.i 'Ii: ing the s.olu t Lon o:f the <tpproac bing l'e'Volution at' e ~ ( 1) the healing of' the s;€Ctaria.n breach:; (2) the winning of natiotlJal indiill~xm;de~ .fran British. iIIJpadalism;

and (3) the ending of,p~tition., The~e fom an in",,~arable trin:1:ty ... None are l;"~alisabl~ as isolated aims in theJ[llselve511 OtI' possihle' of attaJ.n:!IIent except by m@atls of the socialist revol1:ltklIl~Conveit'sely, the socialist movement can turn it:i:i back on the p)robl~-'i'l of" tllationalis:m ,only at the price of' pro~rtra.tion before capitalism; f'or a proletaria.t dividEld witbin its;ru.f cannot s,ei2:e stat.«! pC!We:r~ Na:t:Lonal tasks and social t~s are thUg inextricably WOVen together.

1'he nati.Qnalquestibn IS a social CJlG1!stion and, mo:reov~lI::. orm of the lalrgest~ni tude4 ]{i:therto~ thepxevailir19 tende.ncy among sod.aHsts has been to rega.rd the intru.5ion oj'~ange and :na.tion_oUist banners into the abe:na o\f th2 cl a ss .$tw:ggle as a." campI ica. it: ion, of an exclu-

si v-cl.ydetrim.errtal natu:re to the lab~:I:'movem.cmt i as il. plague of ideoJ.og.ies, in fact~ ~b~t certainly thi!i;]; judge:oont holds tnl~ under all c! X'C1.1m.Stance"s so :far :.is Or am d ~ i 6 eoncerned, On the (lthel' hand" the ur:lsolved national que sti.on - ... rr-..ich is n<rt at £11.1 a zoe 119 iou,s 9ectal'ian. Lssua ;from the 5t~nt at' the DQ.tio:nali1O.t l\I\o:rkers - is rrot. necessarily a brake upon. the cIa$.$ $truQ91ebut~ under Io1l,vourable circumstances, c:ans.ct~., a dynaJ.i1.0 upon i t~ causing \riDlent aGcelet"a.tiom; u;i tempo.

Finally t the best Irish nationalists win always be TrQtskyi ish; for Tl'otslq'isnf~ conceptions of international so1idui ty o:M1d soci<:\.li $t Cloopeji"atian alon.e' corr'!:lspond to th~ nations.l na€Os ·o.f the I.r.ish people~ An i£olat~d p~o..leta.:rian dictatorship; even as~ng it we.r(Ol not milita:dly O'I.i'erthJ:'own~ could not in. the long :r1.1h pre'.Jent a ~esurgence of sect.llian disunity; :for ideology ·cap'.oot ta.4:e the plac'e of tlI:-ead inde1':ini tely ~ Wi th the prolo~at ion of mmger and pov!il'.I'ty 1: he whe~ls of the revolution would begin tot;evol\re backwards.. it is o.nly within do sy'st.01!I of WOE'ld soda,list eccn'lo.rny that the unity of the Irish peop1.e W'ill bec:uke indestructible fox all tiIrLe~

- 59-




(1968 M' _ 983)

,~ 1968. O();t. Pi8 ... c~ful civil :tigh.ts m,).:i:ch of 200J in ~ry $'upported by ~b:rthern Irel2nrt Civil. Right 5 AS$CJot:iat":ion (laCRil.) isatt.acked by ~C in front of British m!O!!dia. Fighting brealts Ol.lt throughout the c.ity~ Barric.~es in the BLgsi~ r.ri.soo, for the first timR~ npe::plets ~l!:"3Cyil !SE-t up in QI..u~@n5 lJ.nivel:"si ty J BeLfast.

1969. IiJJan~ Feq>let 5 ~ocra:r:y (PD) Belfa.st to ,Derry m.:u'ch begins.

The ma~ch is ., i'l..r:r ied by Loy dli ~h;. Oil h~r as sment th. t cliH!ax~s in the brutal i' ambush' at BLlrntol.1et Brid)e that is igno,red by~C_ Many il!1j~red., Ti'lhen these J;''i!iii.Cn ~ny, riotint:] breaks out and the rue re5~rV~ ;force invade the tklgsiCle and run ~.

[) B!!. ~ Northern 1 :t"p.land elect iron. Unicmi st s split be-tween

o~ Neilli te~ and ~t'd1ine-.!;'5. J-Iaisley only narrl(J\i\lly beaten by Ot Neill., Civil r"itghts activists .like am)\? and 'Q..lnia ~"plit the Na.tio~list P8ll:."ty~ []~~ Castlerea..,)h pQl,.\'er station blown up by Ulster Voilunteer

f.~'n;:e (UVF) ~ liM (virtua.11y defu.n_.ct) blamed by loyaHsts~

o !!££ ~ 8emadat t~ DI?\.' lin e.lected as r""e stmiril~t er MP for M.id-Ul. ster • 01 Neill t'(;llIre,ed to .resign~ Replaced by his CCiousin~ Chichest,e:il:',~Clark~ OJul. OJ:.ange pai:.des~ Rioting all aver the North.. 66 yea,r-old ROlJ.lat.i C~lic D.lled by rue.

o Aug. uApp!'efilticeBoysll march in lR.rry ~ Violent :riots~ Bog side Def"eoce Associa.tiafJ, bnild£; barric~s against OiLnother me i.nva$ion~ Bcgside.rs successfully fight ·off. rue "sOO' use CS gas and ~oured car'a, In th~' So'IJth~ thr,2e- cabinet lidnisrt:e't' 50; Bola.r~ 9i,~ and Haughey demand I.ri sh an11V invade t he North. A day la.ter, tl'i1'S seige of .809 Siid~ ccmtinues. Rioting in Belfa.:>;,t~ Lynch says' he cannot 'stand idly by1 and calls .far UN interv~ntion and sets up ~y fi.eld hospit.i?i.ls onth.e" bCI'l:der • Th~ n~tday. p~ acock ~ ];lie Inspector Gen~r.J. ~ cannot subdul€ (ter.rorisej the Bog.side~ He r eql.n est s tzoop interventian~ Callagh.ln {l-bme Secret.;u)il }Ccmpli25~ l'wo Clays ltil.t~r troops m.ov~ into Bdhst .artelC bili.!'l;'i.ca.des rzd.sed there. Rioting in Cll.blin dema:mling uish traop$ be ~ent to NI~

o O::::t • I-i.Jn t [{"POrt ¥CC01"1 aends di War;.{]men t af 'B ~~i al.s r and

thei L r.-~l.acElI1ent by UDR. This 5QCh"J bSCOOL~S .5 ~ect,arioiUJ a. fo:(Ce as

thei' B-m~n - 98% rrt?te~ta.nt~ YO'.:...rg, an ~rqlishn;>Ol.n. beczmas .rue In5'pecttOr Gener.s.l. Protest rrt I'"l.ots 2rupt anzd.nst; the amt report ~ First RUe

man kiUed - by iLoyalist 50 ~ •

o cec. I[-tct. had been \lirwru. ly illVl. siblE du:nru) Au.gust (except in Low-er Fills). Recll::"iminlOItions; at SUlfJ Fein ~\I"d Feis~ togethe.r with prop-Js ... Ls that SF 1t:'e-c:OQnise Ston.ncnt a.nd Dililin govt. SF and IRA a.rmv ocundl spli t ,

G !2.7.Q.~ 0. J~~ ! Provisional$ ~ born OIl t of th~ split.

0. ~_+ Aftel- SElUru lncmths of relative ~pe~ce1 the Brit army

decisi ",21y shQ\l,' sit, se U' as a 00£ 1Uld~l,;" of the .!Otatu s quo. i e the Nl state ~

1\ .Lry~:

The army LUlV!:lr L r" ;u-ea r'n th I~C: J~'::: bl;OilJJe.~ ,;,<

DJ(,l~ . C!~-


j r "" P.aJ !YJ.m::.!"';>h~.r ~ Rioti1"fj br~ak~ oot~ t '~ 1;...-. -,101ic. (He) ~_r.ltabi t..~,nts.. r"'7'enching the

~ (_X9 J<:T,-,<!o:' _.ma, tru_c~tens ·t:\l sho.J'I: dead petrol

t ..... r» lS" '';-o:ri ~5 1 0 p()\t~~eI:.

(I ·illfJQ;r~y r'rcvisinn.s1 Mt rushed thrG..lgh l~ - ~s ~1.d iJ'!lJ::.J5e: 36 ho.l~ cU.t:'fe'l~'" in. ~ms

, _. 1 - _.'-~ltd.._~t '::lit t.F.lr~S5 :from inh.-lbitant5. .r.r: U ~.P l-l"Y; ~lmos t .;il] ":'n prot~st:ant hands;

~e."1rch. .... .:·ch (~_5 ~ 'C : .. ,-

A '1Le:re hand, r-

DAuD. __ .

,~ .!~E III" [j~.. ~1r;.: 315_ ~¥ J. ~ i! ~ .3J~t. (::li~h~5tler--=12'!trl<. ck!'Clar~s~ liNt

io:: mWOi!.t ~.~ 1 t; 1 d.~' '_;'_Ll t. T~ 1-,-_ ,j t:m.'1.~ ",I' •

w~_~ 2fUd.,,=:c,3o';: ~l!:-Cl ';;1'" _:-'~:aig.-~. r~z211aG.::d by Faulkilere

[J Ji.pt'. 'oy,biTll) c.~)~.;n E;;;I •• 1S ir_ ~arn~:st. 31 exJtYlosions in Apr.

o J;;!L ;- ~,,,}U!", J<'!1 sl'n~ '-_'_~d in De:;;-jl;Y. J. d;a;ys of Illassive

J:l!.lth1g:--~ ... ~p,-, to J r:.1 P.rco c a. .. u O:ffici8 I'RA. SlIP withdraw from stOl."lJl.Cnt~ 91 ~ ,:~l~, ~iotl~ 11~ )l \ly.

(J~. ~1! \:~l!~_e·'t "1.0:: 0 RC .... __ n;_] 2 ~l;C"'l:s { 1 ~ PO melf!ber._ 1 P

[.:~pu.:Jlica.~} ..I. :J.t·rr:~d I~>' _i"J. _:'J1.t~l_'I"'?t:ia_l")· yP.;«s ~t o.f dat·e.. Bar~icad-es go up, ~'i~ i·:.ir.~ ;;>YJ~.g.... L ~.t ::;!_ps a.11 ovaz NI e .2 street!! burned da!m. bv

I. yalit..1;r; 1"_tt~r c~:>~~~~ 22 d ~-d~ 19 o:f chern rc::ivilians;. Rent tmd:

l;'i%tes stx-ikfo._ in rc O;L eas b -::ji.:.s, 1·.tJ~1! axeas sealed off.. 11

_inte ... n~ s u coc-d do S W· l' ~e-. " ~...,. s ~o:r ""en sorv (i1~t';;_ va:tion tot ttu"e t echJ"dqJ.es~

8,000 work.- .r ~ :ril:. "::0 .. : G,-.):, r D:~rry. 130 He crn.mcil1,or:s :re$i9n~

~ ~l["\C :--:,: ~c!_, !. r_ L.. ~ • .!::L~ .:2'_.a$~ 11 o?L!_ienat.-l2d totally from t>U sta.te~

LI &r ....... 1 ',_ ~_.~ 0:; .. n r~ i 1 l.~al" 15~ COO a.ttend :t'i;rst aot:i~

int..:.-:;rnm·e rt wt:! cl Lr c'- ..... -1:: ?3.i,r:-:" Y,.! fOUllS ruP~ ~thern Re5ist~e

rbvt set up , I\.l: -: ~'...: ..... ogth (l..)' ... 14~0'10 - before int!iunment, :it had been 2~50'1_

D '~;'_;__L!. .I'~ <.l. - .n .I..~; l?r.=l fz.s t to LOll9 .K:~sh 5.topped by

: -'~<;'~";;' arIil~} .'(_" ~ _ k:."I. ::_~ .. -~d of •. 'Hi-J_j1tern;n~t m..;u:che~ pl~d.

~ 1 f.:72, D .. Itx: • t-liua-t < r:~ c":. ~ one o:i :<ll:ot

rlFei b1..."':;"l~~ t? Gl)er.ry. SO.OO().

t '"Hwre 11~-;, Ald~rs'hnt :-> __ ~I'a~l:r;

J. '1 ,,,tl..-l 1.; j..y in D£_·rry atternded by 301(00.

"1~J~ Hl': _,"-,,--::1 shoot de-.il.d 13~ otheIs inju.roo, ,...;t·n,"\_ : .•

: '[.I. ~\J t./ j<iCJt-U: ni ng II i 11 Sout.lh.. Brit E'llIDa.~.sy .~ i(8 (~., ') -' 1r "l;"ik~ in I'll ~ 3 da.~T5 strike in

- _ ia ~ _ ~ Up ; tJar;1' ';::.rei' - a 51?.mi-fa.scist

J ~ _ ~,}1 ~~l ~ s .5~ Of'.f.icia.l! R,q, ~.'ti: oft bomb· in

s; ~ l.}' ci"..aol,'lin etnd six WCII:eln. cl ea1lec>.r 5


Lill~d.. bI"h~ ~

'd~. 1 f- r.ci sti - rally :in Bel.fast '3.:..~ I.t-,; ~ t-f'3~.th announces closinp of

.u SiL'-,-, -ct c:::..lls 1 ~, strike on StornJ:On""t t s ~nt-[_1I"I_1.c1?:'.':::,~(_ i 1: i_~. ~lJ.ccessfuL t'bg~ loyalist

Sf- anso!'~ b _ -c: r: "lU < j-oorlr_cnt ]t 1:0.1. a 1: ~;. Lavt @'y r~ ny <.r..t --:to.l"'i·on t ... t. ~ T i!::.


~ Dez ry !~

of British aDmY is

[J~~~ r, \ '.1' J. v ef;,t ."i":""l3~~-b3' J-:-i .1a_ Tr..:\ Of.f:idal t is ln~ o~-'i~~cials

~db2'--:ire. From.flt'::lW' on the:b: guns and so...::...iali st 5. ~ p-ea.ce Wcm!J,en r Ap.O'.!.z't from ml~E;'.ns (violetlCe)I ••

~ .

f,~-ill only b~ I."", Ti--:d 1;0, - L --~ -~clopte"':' b), B~ 1t~ ~'l _ (! -;:_.~ d!}d ~ ·~,.il:~lEil."·.

[].,11..1.n. cml(,,2r1ed by :n.l; t~·. <.l' ?illy ~1cK~e~

e 1.::\1. .:. J=' ~ <.~

C.C:;,;i1£;efire b;.:'E"'"'"(,~~ C"J

0S~ Sp~cial categ01.'Y status'

vS"teran r.~blican iilte:r-oee


_'" .J..

L;,..n~:\::u .£OT talk!1>wl"th Wb.ite1a\!'i1. 5 -c:J ~ RC :f "J;m.ili e£o moving into houses


- 61 -

allocated to them 'Dn the Lenadoon Esta.te. Rioti~, break.s aut as Provos drawn into protecting RC t'a1Ili:li(!s~ On 21st, 22baDbs s~"t off in Belfa.5t~ 2. soldiers and 9 civilians ki:U~ - .~ Bloody Prlday t .. Pn)vos claim rv:: and army ignored w,arrdng.!>. Blo.:xiy Friday opens way ;fQ\r '(p0rat:l.on MotarmafJI t - concerted xewction o€ no-go area5~ Schoo,ls.;md ~rts 9iround5, occupied by 'aDlY'~

10 A.ug~ SrLP b~ifJ" talks wi.th "'hi tralaw admifilisha:t1on~ Th~ had acted as :hltelmidia:rieg betw~n Whitelaw and Pl"O\i'OS; afn Provo talks QPer,l th~ way :tor; the SDLP to ful.fil their role as. col1abo!C~tor s ~

I]~@ Darlington comer,enc~ attended by utdonist Party. Alli~e and SDLP.

ll~. Sean ~Stiof',ain~ P:t'ovo chief' of staff. ai:';t'ested in South 0f.II. c.harge' of IRA m.mberstdp A Goes on hunger and th.ir is t st lIrue.. Big demos and sh'ik.es follQ'!!.T~ Ma~Stiofain ~pset that ~ the struw;fle1 h>a..s sp:l:"ead to the SoU"tli;,~.A priest penu..ades him to .g i v'a up. SoUthert:l gO'lilt annOlmces a!l1.endtJl.ents to Off·enoes against the State Act ",rum wi}l set

up sp~~ia1 cmA.rts~ 9J.l~ts can be ja:il,ed f"01' IRA mel1'bel'ship ont.ne wo:rdis of a. senio:tpolk~.. CJn night of voteS' 2 bombs go o:f£ in .nIDlin ki.lling 2". ~cbem:s ~$S~ in atmospoo1"e" of ant.i- IRA hysteria .• ,

ThrQUgh~J.t 1972 utA o1!J1.d UW Ci3!.rzy 0lA t ~ a.ssassina tion campaign against Res (as db plai n· clothed Bx it s in SAS or t Mili tazy Reaction PIIO!r(;et). In Feb 2 Res shot leaving their f'acto:ries~ 1hexe follOliVS stl'ikie calls ofa.11 RCs~ Leads to .i.nte:t:1'lll~nt .of :first loy;uist.!ii~ VanguardjOOO/LAW ,ea..l.l 1 day st;rilf.::e~ Ith a failure., Ram$l'Jackle LAW co'11apses~ It 'Will be replac,ed by U1ster Wb:rkers't ,~cl.1 ~ a much tighter organisa.ti.on ot' 5trates,licallV pIa.oed womers .in erlI'Jinee.ring plants, shipyards and 'especially :powelli $tation.$~ South elections bdng FiIU!' Gael/W govt to POW2;t;' ~

• ~l9'13,~ t1!!!... Whi te P ape!r. cu tl:ine.s t Slnrdn;Jdale 1 pn1pC1 sal S.

tJ JLm~ .Illections to AS5arIDly. 0i"Th Prot side a m.a.jod ty of anti-

Faulkne'i'"UniOl!ists electC!l'd. -

OOct. f'>ow~-sbarin:J ~ecutive (7 Fi!lllknE'rit.es~ 6S«P~ 1 A11t3J'"l.Ce) set up ~ ----r::brthern Ireland (EmrtlZ'ge:ncy Prov:i5ions) I!..ct sm s up 'Diplocl!:

Courts 'I whicb dispens~' wi.th jud~s~

D~.. Umted Uls,ter Unionist (1oalition (Official UP, .rop and Cl" . .u.g ts V<Ulrffua~d unionist Party} set: up, pl~ed to bri:I:"lg Ass~ly dbwn.

1974. 1J1.Ja.n~ ~cu.tiv~ meets. Sll..P cdl~ o.ff rent Mid ra.tes strike. -DFclJ<~ Westminsterel,ection. nuue take' 11 oot ot: 12 :til seats~ Re~s ta,k;; over in NI.

o ApJ'. Rees ~noe9 his rntent.iJljn of restodng 1 t'~sponsiibili ty fo(l;' la", and. ordert tot:hRt (lUC.. In order to db this the .we will be reorganised and grea.tly sh~thened.. lMJC came'renee, including UD\ .alm:l9si~ Paisl,ey ~r:cwell etc plans bringing ~ A.s5~ly and calh ;fo':I:" a D~ Str,OlfOOIlt.

OJ ~. tConstitut:ional stappaget - ?UWC strike t ~l1'WC, par.oll'Irll:i t-

aziesj backed bV p.aE"ties of' the TJUlJC" foroe executive to r€!sign. [Iu:it.w;l stoppage, UW pilO!nt 3 bomb 5 in D.lblin and. Mo:naghan-, killing 33~,

[J Jal. Whl..te p.;.qJer published setti_ng ml.t plans :for Const:i tuti011al Conv~ntWn. 10 t~ attCl!cl:C!

o Nov.

After be~


B:iJ:mi.ngbarn: bombs - 2J. killed. ' r~a.ry I PTA. int:rowcedA strengthened in 1916 thi 5 is now' :tl2newed e\!!',eJl:'Y o:ixmol1l.ths ~

- 62 -

Id~. Irish Republican Soc:ialii$'t Pa.rty ,( JR:i') formed from. di.sg.runtlE...Q Officials disillusion~ with ri.gh'~ward drL·t and p~aceful orienta.tion~ j"Ooined by nationalists of the Bernad!ette Devlin stamp~ Oea5e£ix.e by ProV05~ This bre.aks ~vn it:! Jan and is l'er1€.'!ili,lE:l on a. longer scale in. Feb and 'hreaks COWtl gT adUally th 2>t~.;rl'tE';il; ~

~91;S~ []M!Y., Convention ,elections. lJ'lIDC wills 46 of 78 5ea.tS~ REport {nevi. tabJ.ya~s Up wi th a. proposal .for a n§w Stonnon.t. « Corrvrmtion.

di ssolved March r 7'6 } ~

o Sep. Cr aig b€'Oune5 iii, r mo de r."l. te 1 - advoca tes coalition with SDtp~ \.Up split!;'; with majority taking' \ruP~ s pl<!lc:e Ln UUUC as Ul1ited Ulster Unionht r-bvt (la.ter· Party) under Ernest BaiiLd~

Dl2!S~ Last intern~es, r~lease-d. IREF splits.

- 1976,. 10 MaJII':. From llm\I' on nIIdI ne\i'ii' i.nterne-2s - thoseguil t.y of t 'ScRooledt of'fenc-e~11 betrioo in Diploc:k Courts.

D~~ lVC reo~gani.sed to bave 'primacy~: - 1. Anny to remaj:n 1main secu.1'i t.y buttress t • 2~ Fbphasis on int~llig.ence ga.the-rln;;l in collabell;at.ion w:it.hatnlY~ 3 .• RE'strl.lctudng o,fRUC as a par;unilitary :fo1i:'c:e~

DAugi~ Unarmed P]!:'ovo, volunt~l' .l:J,:;.rlny Lennon shot at wheel iLJ,f cart w:hic:hcra5he;,~ kilJLing 3: t.1cGui:re childre11_Beginning of '~P.eace M:lIvem.em t (PM).

1J'§:!p_~ 12 year old Bdan st~<ut kil1'1!d by plastic bull,et~ P'M leaden,3ttackE!d by loc~ WCRP-n whem they attend a protest meeting of wtmIet.I ~ Provos savethetn. In p ;I:'e 55 Gomel"ence t.hey t ~ Provos and c~ .a.rmy viol~noeA N22Ct day, ;r;eaction of Prot$. :fO:l;:C~ them to withdra.w 5ta.tene-nt;:~· PM will take a .feo.r l'IlOl!:'e'months to die, but has al.iI:'eaay ,e~trez:,ed its fatal. c011t:r;a.diction~ .Mason ~s Q'va:r frttlli Rees" and takes 0\I"el!:' the pol icy of 'liJl ster Lsat ion t .0

.lt2''I7,. Itl~. Seoonri loyalist ~ strike! ~ Demands grea.ter repret;$iOIl and ne",' S'tm:'mont. F.orils {or is seen to fall. }trecal1ise oX Pal. !!Ilev tiS failulnl: to e-n1ist suppolt:t of 8ally'lumforcl p.O!#er worker~~ who Mason buys off

wi th pran_ises o·;f more :repre5siou of na"tionalists, incri:!~,aed m.:lmbers

of lUC and DrR... (ThUs oonceditlg half the strike dem.a.nr:;h;;), .•

DIJuliii!~ G€!ne.:ral election in SOuth. FF win .$1't-e!!2ping victm:y.

Local ~l€'lCtions .in NI show .supPO!rt :fOl[ IlJp still growi.ng despi1:e str~e s2thack:.

OIOct~ ~a:lIlUS Costello s.b:Cl't (by Officials? Sri tish? i:rish Special. .Branch ?) SLP formed~

o Oec~ Throughout the ye,a.r, th.e IRA reorganise in face of . Brit S'l;lcc,e$S~S. into a much t..i$lhte:r cell~ty- "" orgauisationf Mason ini:1erprets

t.heiI\.lack o:fa.ctivi ty as signs of their death, pI:"oc:la.i.m.sthe.m . .'

finished.. At end of yea.r 'newl provo$. begin majo;r: .fire-bomb o.ffensi""e~

. 197B. 61 Feb.. Firebanbing continues until warniD'J systll'lm bm:eaks davn aDd. 12 civilians arlE!kill'edat La MonHotel netllr B~lfa5t~

'COnveyer Belt t justic~ bec~~5 inst.itutiona1ised~ TIu:ooglult most ·o·f 1977 rum into tn2 ;future interIi!JH.~nt i~ replaced by ~ s¥stem. that l~ beats a ~ cOl~e5siol1 ~ ~1 t of" a, 5U;Spect (or pre:;,cnts in cLlUrt an u.nsi.gned confession). 2,. convicts suspect 5 in no-jury D:L~1cck cO'<:ll' t s; E.v idence of' tortu re t which is necessuy tothi s proces 5, JDrnlnts~especiMly against Ca.stle!l;~agn po:lice stat.ion~

[JJ'!iJn~ An Amnesty Intel'TJ.ationa1 repaiLt :finds evidence of torture~ [] Aug. Firs't.Qt a sexie's Qf Daily .Mirror ~di tmdals advoca.tiir..>lJ withdr awaL Thi s ::;h.oMrs that a sec t:i0'.n o:f tl\e 11..1 ling cla.s:'1l, is :t:eady" to oont~pla:te .001. -"!lterna:ti;ve ,ruling class t !fIolu,tidn' to direct l'ule~


- 63-

o [\'ov~ In ocder to stay in pClW"E'L" &1,0; ;;J,. minority govt LP (in

per son 0'£ Foot ~ lilEgot:l. a tes oo~ with aw t p~rnni si.f1;J 5 new seat. 8 fo:!:' NI,.,

_ 1979 ~D Mar ~ Bennett Repel:' t conri rms allegations oft.o.rtu.re ill Ca$tl~~agh a.tld ];'ecommencis some co5Dle1ic :reforms.

[J 8p~ ~ Airey N~a"~ b la.m up by - IJIlL.A at Htm e.e of CO!l1[ilOnS ~ IM..A have arrived on the public: st.a,gle~

DI~~ rw:?, purged .from SlP. W~stmin.st~"r elli.'iCtions. Atkins gets

I'll job in ~]:~ TO!lry govt~ Ciail:on NugentI' f'ir5t pri,soner to. be released wno has b~ on ftJ.e' blankeL Secret army in"tel1iJge~e ~ :released by P);'IQ'Vo.s", ·sbO\lls a;Jtmy doe!5 not rec]ard Provo:,;;;: as mer,e 'I terrori5ts' and t.hat therre CaI1HOt be a ptu'ely military solutiQfi~

D~. Fair En:ploym;ent l'qE,'ncy report shows thet Res are 21'2 times as likely to be unemployed as PlrOt.5J al.so that most of the p.ro:fres.s= iOll.ill o!I'5ki11ed jObs are hdd by PJ."Uts, and that most unskilled., POOl':ly~ paid wo.rkers ar-eRCs.

CAng. In one day Provos blow up Mountbatten (while on holiday in the SOut.h)" and lB Bl:j.tish soldie:rs, E!o.t Warren Pohrt~ papal visit is usad to attack the Provo.!> ·and any an'ti-imp~ri.ll_ist 6tnlggl~'.

[J Pet • Nat i.onal9liash fi.-Block CalIIDi ttee s.et up, larg~ly u~t" pDllitical CQmrol of :rrovas~

c Nav~ Gerry Fitt (MP for West Bel:fast) leaves SDlP and is c~nised by Sri tish lRb~a.

(I Dec_~ Haughey becomas l' aJ:)i seaeh (Prime Mini ~ter) in .26 C<:mm.ies ~

1980~ UnempLoyment zocket s in NI as a r~sult of Thatch4~it~ policiEl's. Wages in South shown to be amongst th!1l lowest in Europ2.

[J ~~ 7 RepubUc:ans 9el on hunger strike :for ' 5 Demands ~ over prison co.ndit:ions~ Massi ~ campaign of marches, str~s etc in Nodh and ~th.

r! ~ ~ H.mg~r st rike call ~d off as a r~::;u 1 t o·f Va9Uef'~ami $es" falling short even of" 5 demands. 9rpport carnpru..gn collapses~.

19a1~ CMal:'. Sri t Qlovt reneges even Olltoose promd ses it has giv¢n~ On . 5th ~ versa,ry of the wi thU:l:'awal of pa1i tica.l statust Bobby Sands begins his hunger s'tr:ike~ to be Jfoll·owed by others at stagge;&"ed .interva1.5. At the cut sct , Sands declares tba.t they are outfol: political .statusi' bu t suppor't campaign tOJ1!i!! S thi~ ckMrn to the ~ Five Demands r ~ Sitting MP Magu.i.re dies. Sands 'llllinsFermanagn .& SoUth 'fynllue electia:rl~

Itl ~. Don Concanoon chooses IntQ:tna t i onal l.!hrker S ' nay toru.al!i:e his 1'lrst v15i t to fill as (pposit.ion speak~r on NI to Ute bedside (lithe dying BOOby Sands~ "to a55Ul'~ rdm that: the Blri ti.$h lJ' ftUly su.pports

too TOlri)est intran5:5,g~ce~ Smldsdie:s on. 5th. 70,OJ()+ eottend :funeral (ie o~er ~~ of non ... unicnistpop1!llation of' NI1 even allowing i'o;tt:' tha.lsands attending, frOlllth!? SOU:t'l'a) ~ Strikes in North and South. Franci£ i~1ughes, l,~endary Provo gllell:"ill.a figbter ~ dies. A:nof.heiL ~sgiv,e £urJ.eraL Local gOlVt elections in Nnl'th shlow' de:fe;;it of Fitt~ who, had c:ondem:lled the hunger str:ik.e., H-Blocl<. candidates take 51,000 first preference votes~

o Jtm~ Get1 election in South. .Anti- H-BLock colOdidates pcl·ll highly, takiHJ two 5ea.ts. Cbalition takes OV~lr frcm FF~.

IJI.JuL Prlsl ey Launc hes ~ 3rd Forc2' '.

Deaths continue~

[JAug,. K:i;e:r:an r.ocherty TO dies~ ~2n carreD el.~ted .ll'tel!:' Brits, ~~ law 'to ban pr.i.50nexs standing in elect£on5~

El ~.. Prior takes ove1:'~

- 6t-

o Oot~ Bl$l,g.er stdke c;:ollaos·es after 10 death§~ Church compUd.t in glt!tt Tnj hU1'ige.r $1: rik~.:r s t 1:: elat i vas to revive lru,nge-r strikers vdlen . th2Y go into coma~

O'!2!~ Am;:II();orlrish Council set up; Pro'Vos sit"1oo't Ruy Bt"ad:fo.n:'J., WP ME' fO'l[ South Beli" as t ..

:l.9B2~ I:II~~ P:r:Lor _annotm!:es his pl~ :(or 'irall ing de-volution' ~ It is c::ondenn.ed by all in Nodh and Scm. th~

1[J.E!2~ Election in South> FF bad;: with minority grr..rt4

o May. Unemployment in Nl now U2.~ COO - is 20%~ It cQntinuesto

c ~~ ~'Lol:"eaIl closes~ 1. 500 1"ed.u'ldancies~

o Ju,l,. H!: is r·eveal,ed t~t the' 1981. Ce'J1:J"U S showed that bet""l.lfe.en '71 .owd tlU~. 1()%. or N"Ipq:lulation emd9!"at~~

CAlJ2~ SLP d{sbands.~

[JOct ~ 20th Assembly ~l'ectio!:ls in NT show over lCl$ support i'0l' Provo SF;,--thi:rd of !lationalistpopula"tion.. SF and SrLP boycIyt .. t AssemblV when it meets~

CNQ,v., Elect.ion i1'l .south. FF de-f~t~~ FF loses 6 !';>e~ts -(to 7Sh FG ge-t ;:.;card ?l)~

liJIRc~ PJrioll:' a.ddresses new A.s.5aribly ~ This i.s the first time since partit;iJOll that a. Bdt.ish govt ruinistel: has addEe5sed the umomsts Ln th.ei;J;' hwne '!paxli,arnent t ~ He a.rmaur.ces an inc.reas;e in thE' RUe hy 5O'J1

t~ 8~0!.'X)~ On 7th .[lec INLA blow up a pub in Ball.ykelly, Cou:o.ty Derryi"

a dri.l1ki:rg Muntof t~ O;ui1;shi:are Regi_:ment~ 11 soldiers and 6 civilians kU,l,oo~ This bzings the tota1 war deaths in th.E!: province t~ .30 since! the Assemb1.ye-1ectionS ~ Conf~I~ru::e .~.f' l.1P' ~ u:nde:r :tea.der ship of Dick ~ring ~ree$ to place ILPts Hi Ws in coalition, govenwent with FG ~ Fitzgerald has ~:rkin;; majority. Fill: st chance sinc~ reces~:LDn £ar major au ster i'ty off·ensi\;!,e against working c1 aSS to wo;r.k~


- 65-

(These W;O Ed1.torials f:rom Socia.list Worker in 1972 show the· chaIlge in the SWPs attitude m ·t<be Irish :'l!.tnzggle whe.n BrltiBh "pubiic·opini:on"took. a chauvinist: turn. The fh'i!Jt deals with the e9~m:ta on moody Stmday. and o,;'flrices tha SWJ?fS defence- of the IRA. Til@ second, 3. mere three weeks later" lroll:ow.ed the Alde.:rshot bombings. We lE!ave ourreaders to draw the eoneluatens .]


II Vl_o lence _in Ireland ~ Heath i.s fu·bb me' f (12/2/72)

There is more humbug and hypocrisy talked about violence than .. aboat almost :my otbe:r Su.oj eel . Day i D and da yOl1t we ge t conde mna ttons of violence f1['OID. Torie:!l. La.bouri~es and assorted establishment men .. The vIolence fbatchle:fly ecneerns th®mar.t the moment ia political violenee, the use of for:cre 101' political ends and es.pecial1y its De bybotn wmgs of the IRA In lr,eland~

What is the attitude fif socialists to the use of violence? It is~ quite· simply~ that it dependi!!l,on tbe ends' which the violence-is intended to furthu' and the £.h"~mstances in which lit is used. Does· our attitude differf;£'om that of themling class? U diffe:rs in this: We ten the tnlLth and they ten lies about this as aooUlt ofllfu··ma; ttel'S •

In every class soo.ief:y file rulers depend on three means 00 maintain tooit'· rule, They are deception (USiually poUtely called e.du.catlon andpel"suasicm) ~ infdmidatioo (the threat of viole11!cea.g;a_ins·t thoSre who ar-e not persuaded} and actual

vi ~~enoo against th08 e WhOi!!i.rB not inti midamd. For t~ last nvo plll'pGs.aa· the'y ma.intam police foreea, ar-mtes and. other I·a.l'med oodi@s ,of wen.rr .•

As the sooialis·t theoretician Fteilerick Eng~18 long ago' pointed out", the CQl'Ie of any' !3 tate cOlli'ilis ts of thEHiH~ ~ bodies of armed men at the servtee of the 001 till!; eIass!. A modern conaervattve theorist purt the :same idea! in more diplomatm l:m:i!gua;~e when 00 defined a. state as 'an entity which bs a monopoiy (If the

legal use of violence in a. defined territory'. What is legal is what other insfiw;t.-· ions of the mling class - parliaments, judgea etc ~ declare to he legal. B~d1y epeakmgJ 'Iegal violence! is 'violence in Ute in~re9·t.s of too .ruling class aJild TiUega!. Qiole!1ce' is; violence against th~i.nterests of the ruHngciass,

It is obvknts then that H€9i.th, Faulkner and their stooges inside and om side tli:t8 labour ruoveruent are no more oppesed to tbe 'use of viclenee fot political ends'

w ....... ---------

- 66-

than were Adolf Hitler or Gengis Khan. Tbey have supported and directed wars - that is, !poli.tics-continued hy violent methods I - all over the world .. They praise (and c,ontroi) the British Army, which; like every otha'r army. is an orga."1isation designed solely fOol' the use of violence on a large scale , Heath condemning violence is Uk€: Sa btl re~king sin.

Pol i tica loons ide.rati ens

T,oday in Northern Ireland Bri tisn. :lm.penalis m is employUig massive violence against the MtimmUst sootion, of the populatton in ONel.' to maintain its last direct foothold in the cGUl'l-try. 'The two wings of the IRA are also employmg violence - although on an ineomparrably smaller scale ~ in order to defeat B"ritish Impartaljam,

Our' attitude" like that of the ruling class. is determined by political considerations .. We oppose British tmperfalts m because it is against the interests of the working class, here and eve.l"ywhBI'e. WI!! support the right of the Irish people to national independence and unity because 'no people that OppNag,~S another can itself

be free!., because national oppression. is a oorrler to too development orf class, consciousness among British and Irish workers a.like.

we. defend the right of the Irish people to 'Use whatsoever m.eans~ violent or otherwise. that ,seem expedient to them in order to achieve national independence and unity.. We defend the right of the IRA or anyone el~ to reply to :iI::nperialist violence with thei.r own violence. The, original violence was the conquest and explottation of Ire land by Sri tis h i rope riaUs m ~

At the same ti.me we do not suppa rt the politica.l ideas of eithe r wing of the IRA"


We reject bi1th the utopian 'national soefaltam' of the Provisionals ,and the !first

the national struggle~ then the soctal strugglet ideology of the Officials. We believe that the Mtiona11iberation of Ireland and tl:e soctal Hheratton of the Irish workers and small farmers are part and parcel of the same srruggle, The one: cannot be achieved without the other.

The stranglehold of British imperialism in Ireland '1,\111 be broken when, and

only when" a 32 county workers!' republic is established" This in turn can be aohieved only when a :revolutionary Iil,Ocialis't movement gains decisive tnfluencem the Ir.ishw'OJrking class.


Meanw'hlle our duty is dear: Unconditional but critical support for ,thes,truggle

,of all those, inclurlmg both IRAst fighting tmpert altam in Ireland. By unaonditional~ we mean support Ng-annasa of our' criticism of the Ieade rahip and tactics. By critkal we mean opposing the sowing of illusions that the atruggle can finally be won except by the vtetoryof too' working class fighting 00 a progrtlJI1JJl.El ,ofs 00 ial as well as na tiona] Ifbe ra.tion •

- 67 -

"No ,substitute for mass actl,on' r 4(3/72.

The millionaire press c.ampaigll . .against 'vtolence' is hattmg up. The Ald€n.hot explosioll is gmt to {bell' mill and Heathts calculated is meal' on televhl'ion~ aSSGdarting the millen'll strike with 'violence or the threat o,f violenoo'~ shows

e:learly enough the at ms of the operation,

Parlof the governtnent's plan to :revenge :ilts defeat bythemmers ~ by s mas1:illlg another seCtion of WQrller:s in a rna j or :3 trike - is the launcbing of' a e a ropaign of bysteria.and abuse to creat the lright1 atm.ogphere. Ban the IRA ill Britain and stop 'iUegaP rthat iSt effective} picketing; toe hvo, go hand iID:I. hand, Heath.

badly needs to. create an a.tmosphere ofmH;lritical support for 'ilia vicious and rea.ctioma:ry administratiOll. 1£ the go()~'ernruent is, defeated j ~ the man had the

il tnpooence to clarm, I tben the country is defeate rl' •

• ,

He hopes to create a WiWH.'b.unting atmosphere in which all real opponents: can

be tsolated ru:ld dealt \vitb by 'lIictimisation and police acdon, He VI."iU :no,t sueeeed, :Far too many people are suffertng from unemployment, welfare cuts and means tes,ting to fan for the absurd claim that 'the ,government is just a group of people elected to do wmt themajoriiy of us wanti• AU the same, miiUlY workers who M.VE; few iillus:i,an in Heath's big bustness ~ernme~t are vutneeable topropl-' ganda about fvioleI!lce~ and lterI'oris m' and so ilis necessa..ry to l'Iestate the sooi~Ust po,sltl.on.

Govel'tlment;s,. allg:overnments. rely onviru.ence, in the last resort, to lIlaintain the po,wer- of the rultngelasses they represent. That is why they spend mmion.8 on armieB. navies and air forces ~ instruments O'f ol"g!Ulwed violence ana lalrge scale. The~e :foFlces Exist as much to deal y,,1tb. thmata to t.he ndel"s from within - fintem:ril security1 - as f~om v.rithont - tbe t1!:n:'eat Mother l"I!l!l:ing classes.

Anybody who denies tbis patent fact is a fool or a Ua.r. A:i::ly goverlL'Hne:nts pekes·mu. who denounces violence is a h ypoc:ri te ~ .W:y s,ocia1ist who, reIiJ,OUDCeS the use of violence in aU cjreu.ms'tancBs is. like at man who goeatnto a oorJting' 'ring witb his hands tied beh:mdbis back+

''Whai: s001 aiuts m the marxiilt tradition do l'~ ject i.EI the ill nston that by olowi.ng up, a Ts:ar o:r President orP rime i!!IIiniste r ~ S oe ietycan be changed,. All that

can. in fad be cban,ged by these means is tne nameof the man who helda the o:ffic,e. it mal cba:n~e in soeie ty ~ a S Qcialrevolutiol'l -- ean be ae hi.eved only when the mass of t1H.5 people ~mfwe to go on ill the old Ym.yl. as Lenin put tt,

. ~

The cnu;;: of too Ola:rxist ease against individual terlloria,ln - t.hJ3 bomb ,ann the r;evolvElir as a. ,suootitute£or politics ~. :is t.hat it does nat help but actually binders the growtb of a mass revoiutiona.1ry orga."lisation th!ilit alone can re.ally challenge tb.e social .system. 'I' hat case, develQ.ped.aioot the aaarc Msts :1m We,srem Europe in the last c~ntu.l·y ,and. later. by the Russian marxtsts a,gainst the Narodniks 1 has been va rifle d ti me and ag;air. by bisoorical ex-perience.. No amount of hef'o:r]s ta and self-sacrifice by terrorism ~ and these qualities were

" .


dri.a,pla.yed in abundance by Russian NarodItiks and spanish anarchtsta - can act

as a substttute for masa working-class action.

The vtolenee used by both wings of the IRA is not, for the IDOst part. terrorism in the JI,roper sense of that term, It is legitimate self defence by the Ca.tholic community .in the Six Counties againl3t: tbe terrorism of the police and military forees of the state. The extens ion of that self defenoe into a.ssassination of

individual poliiticians and the bombing of i:m.ildings cannot 00 supported by

soo ialists .

This is not amoral question. W,e would not shed a tear at the death of that violent reactionary Mr Taylor and we M\I'e nothi~ but contempt for those disgusting sCoundrels who raise a hullabaloo about the umo:rtu.nate: deaths of civilians at Alde.I'Bhot and at the same time s,upport the' ind!iscri minate slaugbrer of vastly grea.ter nurubers of ,civUians m. Vietnam every d:ay~

It iSi a: political questton, Indiscriminate wrl'"O:rism hmders the growtb of the mas's movement, It is therefore 'the duty of ,e,;rel'y socialist to oppose it. irrespective ,of quesnons of popula.rity or unpapw.a.rity In Ireland; Britaln or anywhere else.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful