Is iomaí cineál phoblachtánachas atá ann is cosúil. Uaireannta bionn sé deacair a ríomh cén cheann atá fírinnneach agus dílis don phoblachtánachas a spreag Eirí Amach 1916. Uaireannta ní bhionn.
Ag an deireadh seachtaine thug Mícheál Martin oráid ag Cnoc an Arbhair in omós do laochra 1916. Ceiliúradh an pháirtí – a thugann an Pháirtí Phoblachtánach orthu féin – é seo agus bheithfeá ag súil go ndéanfadh ceannaire an pháirtí iarracht ar an lipéad phoblachtánach a shealbhú dá pháirtí féin, rud ar dhein.
San oráid seo bhí an méid seo le rá ag an Teachta Dála Máirtín, tagann sé le mo thuairimíocht féin ar an gceist:
Being seen to have fought a clean fight was important to the men and women of 1916.
They wanted to win Irish self-determination with integrity and honour.
The Easter Proclamation states that anyone who serves the cause of an Irish Republic should not “dishonor it by cowardice, inhumanity, or rapine.”
I ruefully thought about the betrayal of that noble phrase earlier this week when I heard the name of Columba McVeigh on the news.
Columba McVeigh’s name is not a stand-out name in Irish history, but it should be.
It is a name that deserves to be mentioned at this hallowed ground.
Columba McVeigh was only a teenager in 1975 when he was abducted, murdered and then hidden by the Provisional IRA.
His body has never been found and this week, 37 years on from his murder, the search for his mortal remains is ongoing.
Columba’s elderly mother died in 2007 never having had the opportunity to give her son a Christian burial.
As true republicans, I think it is important for us today to express our solidarity with the family of Columba McVeigh and the families of all the other disappeared.
While the case of the Disappeared is deservedly well known and well supported, it is also just the tip of the iceberg in terms of Provisional IRA barbarity. Just today for example, 29th April, there are seven families mourning the anniversary of a loved one cut down in their prime by thugs claiming a link to the patriots buried here.
The case of one of them sums up well why we reject that link. On this day in 1984, Thomas McGeary a 48 year old father of seven left his home to go and feed his cattle. On his way back from the farm, a booby trap bomb in his car exploded, killing him instantly.
It was the work of the IRA, but they wouldn’t put their name to it. Instead, they used an ‘Irish Freedom Fighters’ cover. Then, having killed him, and to add insult to injury, they spread a false and evil rumour in his community that he was a collaborator.
That’s how the Provisional movement did its business.
It is incorrect and historically dishonest to equate in any way the heroes who fought for Irish freedom in 1916 and in the subsequent War of Independence with the actions of the Provisional IRA.
The terrorist campaign that was waged in the North was not a clean fight.
It was dirty and nasty.
It cost thousands of lives and did untold damage.
It was unequivocally wrong.
And no amount of new historical revisionism, willful amnesia or media indifference can alter that fact.
I am glad that Sinn Féin seems to have, at last, recognised that the Irish people will make their decisions based solely on the ballot box and not the armalite.
But it took them too long to realize this and it caused immense human suffering.
Ina fhreagra fheargach ar an oráid seo, bhí sé súntasach nár luaigh Gerry Adams ainm Columba McVeigh uair amháin. Tá Columba bocht fós ‘disappeared’ ag na Sealadaigh, an dtuigeann sibh?
“The irony of Deputy Martin using an Easter commemoration at Arbour Hill to launch an attack on republicans will be lost on very few.
“Sinn Féin is dedicated to the achievement of the ideals of the leaders of the 1916 Rising. We seek a mandate for a genuine republican approach to the issues that face the Irish people at this time.
“Our primary political objective is a united Ireland achieved through peaceful and democratic means.
Cuireann sé múisc agus déistean orm go bhfuil Éamon Ó Cuív anois i mbun feachtais chun ceannaireacht Fhianna Fáil a bhaint amach, is cosúil, agus é den tuairim go spreagfaidh a sheasamh in éadan an Conradh Cobhsaíochta….bhí orm dul chuig Foclóir Uí Dhomhnaill faoi sin cinnte – agus an bhaothchaint is déanaí faoi chomhrialtas idir Fhianna Fáil agus Shinn Féin deistean orm. An fhaid is go séanann SF leithéidí Columba McVeigh, ba cheart an pháirtí sin, cothrom na tíre seo de pháirtí an Fronta Náisiúnta sa Fhrainnc, a fhágaint san fhuacht.
Ní shéanaim ar chorr ar bith an dochar a rinne Fianna Fáil le mí-riail don tír seo agus dár todhchaí. Ach is lú é an dochar sin ná an doirteadh fola ar thacaigh Sinn Féin i gcaitheamh na mblianta agus, go h-áírithe, ó 1969 go dtí an lá inniu. Ba phoblachtóir é Columba McVeigh chomh maith nó níos fearr ná aon Sinn Féineach – ach ba bhocht an chúiteamh a bhfuair sé ar sin.