Racism In Our Midst

Racism In Our Midst

I wrote the following feature seventeen years ago. It was published in August 2003 in the Andersonstown News and is as relevant now as it was then, because racism remains pervasive, both subtle and explicit - clearly in the USA, as witness the killing of George Floyd,...

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Behan and the IRA

Behan and the IRA

On this day in March 1964 Brendan Behan died at the age of forty one from alcoholism. Before he became an internationally-acclaimed author he worked as a house painter and also joined the IRA, initially as a courier. Behan was a friend and comrade of my Uncle Harry, a...

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Keiro no Hi

Keiro no Hi

Every year Japan sets aside a day to mark ‘Respect for the Aged Day’. I think it is something that legislators in Leinster House and Stormont should consider, even though symbolic, as a measure of raising awareness about our elderly citizens. Here is a newspaper...

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‘I Am, What I Am’

‘I Am, What I Am’

Today is the twelfth anniversary of the death of David Ervine, leader of the PUP and a former UVF prisoner. I interviewed him in 2002 in his office at Stormont where he was an MLA. There has been much speculation down the years about whether loyalism would be in the...

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For The Cause Of Liberty

For The Cause Of Liberty

The difficulties of dealing with the past has been dominated by and largely associated with the recent conflict in the North. But the decision by the Irish government to commemorate members of the RIC and the Dublin Metropolitan Police prior to the establishment of...

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The Year 2020*

The Year 2020*

Jimmy and I went to the dance that Friday night in Clonard Hall. It was New Year’s Eve. He was 17 and I was 18. There was the countdown to midnight, followed by hugs and kisses and the singing of Auld Lang Syne. But the festivity was overshadowed. Around us were a...

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Christmas In The Crum

Christmas In The Crum

This is an excerpt from my book, Then The Walls Came Down, when at Christmas time I was on remand for conspiracy to murder, kidnapping and IRA membership. Among those referred to are my cell-mate, Roy McCool from Derry; two of my co-accused, Jim O’Carroll and John...

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Children of the Nation

Children of the Nation

My friend, Jenny Farrell, has just compiled and edited a book which is to be launched by Fr Peter McVerry at 3pm, next Saturday, 23rd November, in Connolly Books, 43 Essex St E, Temple Bar, Dublin. The book, The Children of the Nation: An Anthology of Working People's...

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A Spirtual Revolutionary

A Spirtual Revolutionary

Fr Des Wilson died yesterday at the age of ninety four. I saw him for the last time two weeks ago at Nazareth House Care Village. He was very frail and his voice was a whisper. But with him was Janet Cush, one of many from the Springhill and Ballymurphy community who...

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per pagina ad lux aeterna et amor

per pagina ad lux aeterna et amor

I loved this little book of stories and poems which the author, Martin Connolly, autographed for me at Scribes at the Rock in August 2018 shortly after it was published by Snowchild Press. Martin (from Belfast) is Professor of English Literature at Tsurumi University,...

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 ‘Then The Walls Came Down’ has been reissued in paperback and is available also on Kindle here at Amazon
For signed copies please follow instructions here

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