Monday, February 27, 2006

It must be marching season again..........
The month of March brings out two very different forms of Marching season in Ireland and on this side of the pond! We Irish-Americans know only the happiness and revelry that is St. Patrick's Day month with the various parades, performances and parties.....
In Ireland things are a bit more complicated as can be seen by this weekend's riot in Dublin sparked by an Orange March allowed down O'Connel St. Go here to see a photo journal of the events
Tá súil agam go mbeidh síocháin i éirinn go luath. I also hope one day they will be able to have only the pleasant marches we have here in the States.

Gerry Adams' Fundraising Visa Denied Again by US Administration

The U.S. Special Envoy, Ambassador Mitchell Reiss, has barred Gerry Adams once again from attending a fundraising event unless the party endorses the PSNI [Police Service of Northern Ireland]. This time it is a Friends of Sinn Féin breakfast at the Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C. on the morning of March 16th.

The move by the US Administration is all the more galling and mystifying at this time as policing reform remains the subject of delicate negotiations with the British government, expected to introduce legislation devolving policing and justice to elected officials in the north of Ireland. Something Sinn Fein has been lobbying for.

The IRA moves over the past months in standing down as a military force and totally decommissioning its arms seems to have stimulated the US Administration to punish Sinn Fein.

The IMC [Independent Monitoring Commission], which is neither independent nor monitors anything - it is told what to report by the PSNI , just happens to be visiting the U.S.

Meanwhile, the DUP [Democratic Unionist Party] is opening a US office. There are no plans to ban Ian Paisley from fundraising. The DUP will be rewarded for its tireless efforts to wreck the GFA [Good Friday Agreement] and return to the unacceptable, bloody past.

We must send a powerful message to Ambassador Reiss, the National Security Council, and whoever else is responsible in the U.S. Administration by telling the Bush Administration know we will not tolerate this discriminatory treatment of Irish officials.

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