One thing that has come up recently is the condition of the defense forces. Apparently they aren’t in any condition to defend the country with less than ten thousand men to staff the army, navy and air corp. That would leave about five thousand men as combat soldiers . Lack of Capabilities for example No combat aircraft, just a few helicopters, No tanks just a few APC’s, No air defense capacity, scare Artillery and just a few days ammunition . Shockingly state really. Who would leave us in a defense less state ?|Hundred years of fianna fail/fine gael has us a push over for anyone who wants to take us.
The establishment obviously isn’t reliant on Irish arms to keep them in , we have a bigger army if that was the case . There is no guardian force to protect the country, kick out corrupt governments and so on.. Kept weak deliberately so ..We need a modern army with full capabilities to protect us in this threatening. world
We have all noticed in the past few months, the price of everything has gone up especially petrol/diesel.gas which has brought knock on increases in the price of food,fertilizers,home heating oil or kerosene and . .just about everything else.
I recently bought five hundred liters of kerosene which worked out @€1.40/liter or €700 for the fill. It was €0.86/liter before Christmas (which was up on a previous price). Very wallet emptying these increases, Bord Gáis put up prices 27% for electricity and up 40 % for gas other energy companies have made similar increases..
What does one do ?
No body has got wage increases of 27%, poor people have decided to turn off the heating as they can’t afford it, take less journeys by car, shop at Lidl or Aldi, look for wage increases or increases in social welfare all in aid of making one ends meet.
Whats the reason for all these increases ? More demand for oil and gas, production cuts by OPEC and other oil producers, more demand by Asian countries.. Largely i blame the Saudis for “gouging” consumers and being able to get away with it..
The Irish Daily Mail says most people are €3,000 worst off than before all the prices increases in oil&gas. Maybe people will switch to renewable energy i.e Wind/Solar/Hydro/Nuclear it should be cheaper. . They should be a switch to electric or hydrogen cars in the next ten years that will reduce the demand for oil and gas.
Flicked on the radio to “Classic Hits” the show that was on was “Guaranteed Irish” with Meghann Scully 8-10 pm Sunday night . She introduced a band i think was called the “Academic” and their t0ur dates in Belfast and Derry which she called “Londonderry” only a loyalist calls it rhat and then asked if rhey had any Irish dates ? ? !!!
Fuck me but I thought that Belfast and Derry were in Ireland !!!
Didn’t ace at geography but at least I got that right.
You might have notices of late that blog posts have got scarce .. This is because that I have been ill and had a stint in the Regional hospital in Limerick , was in there for nearly a month . Problems in the renal department which needed sorting out. The problem isn’t exactly fixed but getting treatment for it. So back blogging again !
Here is the autobiography of Billy Connolly A Glasgow born Catholic who is famous for his comedy sketches. He was described as Windswept and Interesting by a singer who he knew. He describes people who are “Windswept and Interesting” just have to be it … they don’t care what people say about them, they don’t buy new clothes , they’ll try on a tea cosy when no-one is around and tell their story their own damn way.
“Billy” was born in November 1942 in a Glasgow tenement to a father who was away at War and a young Mother. Their mother abandoned them when he was four years of age and was placed in a children’s home but was taken out by his Aunts on his father’s side, He went to live with his Aunts in a rather cramped house. He got a rather tough upbringing, one of his Aunts used to beat him till he stood up to her years later, he also got a trashing from the nuns which continued when he went to the “big” school. He told his classmates that he wanted to be a comedian and they all laughed !
He was abused by his Aunt and sexually abused by his father who he had to share a bed with when he came back from the War. “Billy” didn’t do well at school, he couldn’t do his homework with the situation at home and was regularly bashed by his teachers.. He apprenticed as a welder at a Glasgow shipyard but his heart wasn’t in it and dossed alot.
He started to play at a folk hall with a banjo and began telling jokes to the audience. He was a “stand by” act if someone didn’t show up. His career in comedy begin to take off and played at larger and larger venues. He experienced his marriage break up but his career kept going, He lived and worked in Los Angeles and New York and starred in a few films.
He is now in his late Seventies and suffers from Parkinson’s, he lives in the Florida keys and says he hasn’t done bad for a welder who got away with it.
Just browsing facebook and came across this post from Irish History and Troubles about Gerry Adams being a Mi5 spy.. This accusation dates from 2014, you can see the article on Belfast Telegraph website here .
The report alleges that Gerry Adams was turned in 1972 during a Police interrogation and worked secretly for Mi5 since then. The RUC/ PSNI made this claim when Mr Adams was arrested in 2014 over the Jean McConville killing, Mr Adams was held by the Ruc/PSNI for four days. Accusations like this are not uncommon in this regard. Rumor has it that at least half of the IRA worked for the security forces. Working for the security forces would make alot of things add up- why all the constant “mistakes” that ended up being a propaganda victory for the Brits.
One wonders if more will come out on Mr Adams, I will keep a ear out for anymore.
Above is gif from Wikipedia Commons showing the signatures on the Anglo Irish treaty which was signed on the December 5th/6th 1921. What can one say about the Anglo Irish treaty ? Absolute disaster is what I would say, the Irish delegation had under pressure signed up to the partition of Ireland, an oath of allegiance to the British King, British army to have garrisons in the 26 counties. Little or no real independence really. The Irish delegation signed the treaty without Dail or cabinet approval which they had told to get before they signed anything.
The result was two very nasty little states being established in Ireland, Both states were economic basket cases . What should be noted was the amount of people that left Ireland for foreign shores … emigration was a fact of life for all Irish people. The resulting civil war and the “troubles” could be laid at the door of those who signed the treaty. Maybe allocating the blame is more appropriate than the “hero” worship of the pro treaty Fine Gael/Fianna fail and Rte.
One fact that has to be made is that a 26 county dominion of the British empire could have be negotiated by a home rule parliament in Dublin . The Irish delegation had gone nothing in the way of concessions from the British. The British had given very little but it was enough to cause a split in the Irish. People who had jumped on the band wagon now jumped off. It was like a battle between the “have’s and the have-nots”.
The decisions made a hundred years ago touch us t0 this day.
This is a book I read (listened to actually) by Willie Carlin who enlisted as British soldier from 1965 to 1974 and on leaving the British army was asked to spy on Sinn fein for the British security service Mi5. He wasn’t asked to spy on the IRA but on the politics of Sinn fein and what they are doing. Being a Derryman he joined the waterside branch of Sinn fein and gradually worked his way in to the organization, becoming branch secretary, working in the Sinn fein advice centres and so on. He was told to get close to Martin McGuiness which he did, he kept Mi5 informed of Sinn fein tactics, electioneering , voter impersonation , membership records and expensives and income. meetings and so on. He had little time for the local IRA who he described as the “fuckup squad”, riddled with informers as they where but also mentions that he met Martin McGuiness coming out of a Mi5 safe house this was in the seventies ! The author waited till 2019 to tell people about this
The author was a rising star in Sinn fein, he was talked about standing as a councilor in the local elections. One mistake he made was ringing the British army barracks from the Sinn fein advice centre, they checked the phone bill ! They saw the unusual phone number, rang it up and found it was the British army. The author had to be very careful for months after this and resolved not to make such a stupid mistake again.
The author met his “contacts” in carparks of hospitals, they pull up in a van longside his car and take him to the British army base. He continued to work for Sinn fein whilst all the time being a spy for Mi5/FRU. He carried on till March 1985 when he was pulled out by the British army after a former handler blew him to the provos. His life was saved by none other than Freddie Scapatti of “Stakeknife” fame who told his controllers that Carlin (the author) was to be picked up by the IRA nutting squad the following morning. The author was told by the British he would be dead by morning and whisked him away to a British army base outside Belfast. Margert Thatcher’s ministerial jet was sent to collect him and his family. He was placed initially outside Cardiff in Wales where he lived happily for years, he received relocation expensive, a new name, new driving license and a lump sum. He recounts meeting Margaret Thatcher who tapped him on the arm and told him “What a great thing he was doing for his country !”
He believes that the British Government was successful in drawing Sinn fein away from the armed struggle and into main stream politics. The author has many regrets on his life as a informer principally being that he was unable to attend his son and daughters funerals, his life was marred by personal tragedy.