British ‘peace’ condemned

THE Republican Forum organised a meeting on the Irish ‘peace process’ in London last weekend.

It was addressed by Jimmy Kavanagh of Republican Sinn Fein and Kevin McQuillan of the Liam Mellowes Society - named after the socialist guerrilla leader executed during the Irish civil war, and “dedicated to the reforging of a revolutionary party of the working class”.

While the RSF spokesperson commented on the “cruel hoax” of the ceasefire, “made without a single gain” in spite of all the “sacrifices disregarded so callously”, comrade McQuillan attempted to set out an alternative.

He was not surprised that the ceasefire has ended up in a British peace process. Sinn Fein was a purely nationalist party: “Remove the arms and you effectively remove the struggle.” He described how such movements have learnt to absorb socialist forces, especially during periods of downturn - only to swing to the right during periods of relative success.

McQuillan did not believe that a split from Sinn Fein was imminent, but warned dissidents not to make the mistake of creating a “Provos Mark II”, should such a split occur.

“So long as Britain claims jurisdiction over the north-eastern part of our country, then there will always be some element of Irish people that advocates and will carry out armed resistance,” he said. But armed struggle was a tactic. He believed it would be correct for socialist republicans to contest elections to any new Six County assembly “on an abstentionist platform”.

In discussion, points were made by Communist Party and Revolutionary Democratic Group supporters about the type of Irish organisation needed to carry forward those principles.

Many referred to the need for new thinking, and one applauded the Communist Party for opening up the Weekly Worker to other organisations.

Peter Manson