Thursday, October 15, 2009

Message from a Michigan A.O.H. Member

Message from a Michigan A.O.H. Member

Jack, I accessed your Blog page -

The news item you posted is fine, but on reading your 'Questions' after the news report has angered me. The controversy with the Hunger Strikers was handled by Sinn Fein in public statements months ago. The negotiations with Margaret Thatcher's government were never made public at the time because many of the demands of the prisoners were not agreed on by the Brits. The Brits agreed on some of the demands but Thatcher was adamant on items like recognising them as political prisoners and allowing them to wear civilian clothes versus prison clothes. The latter item was the main reason why the prisoners went on the blanket and then the hunger strike.

We all understand that the IRA made some mistakes during the 30 year war with the British army, SAS, MI5, MI6,the 14th Intelligence, RUC, Special Branch, B Specials (later the Ulster Defence Regiment) UDA, UVF, Red Hand Commandos, Ulster Freedom Fighters, Orange Volunteers, Red Hand Defenders, Third Force, Garda Siochana, and more. (Not to mention feuds with Official IRA, INLA and IPLO.)

The Hibernians in America have not forgotten that the 30 year 'troubles' was started by the loyalists. The atrocities that followed were bad on both sides. I suggest that we use our energy to achieve justice for those atrocities against the Nationalist community first, before we start maligning their defenders of those dark days. Lets not forget that the Peace Process began with Sinn Fein (Gerry Adams) contacting the SDLP (John Hume) meeting them in Clonard Chapel rooms (my old church). The SDLP approached the Brits and the rest is history.

Lets fight for Bloody Sunday justice, Pat Finucane justice, Rosemary Nelson justice, the Dublin and Monaghan bombings justice, etc., etc.,

Take your blinkers off and get back into the premier fight for North of Ireland JUSTICE.

Your on-going attacks against Gerry Adams, the Provos and Sinn Fein, on the Internet under the guise of a Hibernian American heading, in my opinion is a false representation of the AOH in America. If you want to voice your personal opinions I suggest you put your name, Jack Meehan, on the title of the blog page and remove any confusion that you speak for all the American Hibernians. You most assuredly do not speak for me.

This message refers to a previous submission in this blog entitled, “Gerry Adams: the type of truth process I will work with”.

My Reply

Dear Brother Hibernian,
I think you have missed the whole point of the Hibernian American News and Views blog. The title "Hibernian American" does not in any way imply that it is aimed specifically toward A.O.H. members, rather, it is a generic term aimed toward Americans with Irish roots or anybody who has an interest in Irish issues.
You will notice that there have been and will continue to be submissions on a wide range of issues from many sources that may be of interest to people who have no connection with the A.O.H. There will also be submissions that would be of particular interest to A.O.H. members. However, it is not my intention in those submissions to give the impression that I am speaking for the A.O.H. National Board as some have suggested. I am not, rather, I am speaking as an individual member exercising his right to voice his opinion.
Regarding your accusation of "my ongoing attacks on Gerry Adams, the Provos, and Sinn Fein", that is simply not true. Over the years, I have praised Sinn Fein as often as I have found fault with them. I happen to believe in giving credit when it is due and criticism when it is warranted.
I also happen to believe that the allegations in Richard O'Rawe's very thought provoking book, "Blanketmen" and the subsequent support for them reported in several submissions in this blog are worthy of further investigation. I should hope that we can disagree on this without being disagreeable.
Yours in our Motto,
Jack Meehan, Past National President
Ancient Order of Hibernians in America

This post script did not appear in the reply to my Brother Hibernian. However, just to keep the record straight, I would like to state very clearly that I am a very proud citizen of both the United States of America and Ireland who is vehemently opposed to socialism in any form and I will never hesitate to say so.

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