Immense importance of Soloheadbeg still resonates today

Sinn Féin were delighted to pay their tributes to the bravery and valour of the Volunteers of the 3rd Tipperary Brigade who engaged British Crown forces at Soloheadbeg one hundred years ago this week.

Sinn Féin general election candidate Ciara McCormack applauded the event organisers and all those who turned up:

“The central importance of Soloheadbeg was seen as a significant historical priority for Sinn Féin.

Immense importance of Soloheadbeg still resonates today“Party leader, Mary Lou McDonald, travelled down to Tipperary and gave a very well received oration on the day.

“Her speech emphasised the gravity of the task undertaken and the uncertain context in which it emerged.

“Revisionists may try to peddle smears that the Republicans who conducted the War of Independence were bloodthirsty brutes and savages, but the reality is that the British government operated by coercion and repression and any chance of a peaceful path to independence was crushed by them.

“Door after door was slammed shut by the British government, including the post-war Peace Conference in Paris and the eventual outright banning of the Dáil in late 1919.

“Once all those peaceful roads were closed the conflict escalated into the ‘Black and Tan War’.

“It is noteworthy that, once again, the British government today are willing to jeopardise any path to peace through their negligent handling of the Brexit process.

“In a bid to appease the Brexiteer hardliners propping up her zombie government, Theresa May is considering to unilaterally roll-back the Good Friday Agreement.

“The mistakes of the same past must not be allowed to be repeated while peace is at stake.

“I was very honoured to celebrate this occasion alongside my fellow companions in Sinn Féin, and in particular, to have the great honour of reading out the Democratic Programme of the First Dáil, whose declaration also coincided with that day.

“That programme still possesses a radical relevance for today. In particular I was struck by one specific passage:

“’It shall be the first duty of the Government of the Republic to make a provision for the physical, mental and spiritual well-being of the children, to secure that no child shall suffer hunger or cold from lack of food, clothing or shelter’.

“It is clear that we still have much more work to do.

“The state must do more than simply pay lip-service to the events of Soloheadbeg and the First Dáil. The Republic needs to be realised in its totality.”

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