Category: Ireland

Playing the Orange Card

The Brexit campaign has been directly responsible for a huge spike in national chauvinism and racist violence. To deny or minimise this, as some on the left do, is to completely ignore the impact of reactionary arguments like “needing to take control of our borders”, “stopping free movement from the EU” and “restoring national sovereignty” that have dominated the Brexit agenda. There is no progressive dynamic here but a reactionary harking back to Britain’s imperial past and accepting the myth that migrants are to blame for economic woes.

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Ireland 1968-69: Mass revolt against the Orange state

On 5 October 1968, the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) savagely beat a peaceful civil rights march off the streets of Derry. This police riot was flashed over television screens throughout Ireland and Britain that very evening. Among the defenceless marchers was Westminster MP Gerry Fitt, with blood streaming down his face after being truncheoned. Some 96 people needed hospital treatment.

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