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 RIP Bobby Sands - 24th Anniversary 5th May 1981 
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Registriert: Dienstag 29. März 2005, 16:36
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Wohnort: Balloch, Scotland
Beitrag RIP Bobby Sands - 24th Anniversary 5th May 1981
http://69.93.29.242/hb/showthread.php?t=89288

Died on this day, 5th May 1981 after 66 days on hunger strike.

A poet and a soldier who died courageously.

Rest in Peace Bobby.


Donnerstag 5. Mai 2005, 20:13
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can you please tell more abaut bobby´s reasons for going in this kind of strike?


Donnerstag 5. Mai 2005, 21:53
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Registriert: Montag 28. März 2005, 23:13
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Wohnort: Meistens Hamburg
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Informations about Bobby Sands in German


Donnerstag 5. Mai 2005, 22:09
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thanks for the link dosi. my first thougts were that he could be one of those men who where "auf decke", but i wasn´t sure - now i am.


Freitag 6. Mai 2005, 16:28
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Registriert: Dienstag 29. März 2005, 08:39
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wuschel hat geschrieben:

thanks for the link dosi. my first thougts were that he could be one of those men who where "auf decke", but i wasn´t sure - now i am.


There is also a good film about the mothers of two members who were members of the strike. I will try to find out the name

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"Some people think football is a matter of life and death, I assure them it is much more serious than that"


"EY Dosi, da krieg ich nen HHass"


ICH BIN HESSEN (eine Initiative des Goethe-Instituts - hoffentlich irgendwannmal)


Freitag 6. Mai 2005, 18:34
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Registriert: Montag 28. März 2005, 23:56
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oneofthebhoys09.tripod.com

ist für mich die beste deutschsprachige Seite für Einsteiger ins Thema irische Geschichte und Celtic...

Steht ein ganz guter text zur GEschichte der wunderschönen grünen Insel, und ein ebendso schöner text zu Celtic, der Geschcihte den Fnas usw. Ausserdem das größte Songbook was Rebelsongs angeht im web, teilweise auch mit deutscher Übersetzung und mit Erklärung zur Geschichte des jeweiligen Liedes (z.B. bei "God save Ireland")

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the maybe best site in german for guys who just start to interest for Celtic and/or the irish struggel for freedom or the history of the sweet emerald isle...

You can find a very good text about Ireland and its history, also about celtic, the history, the fans and so on...

You also can find the biggest Songbook with Rebelsongs on the web, sometimes including the german lyrics and an explanation to the speciel history of each song (for example from "god save Ireland")

So, i´m going to get some sleep, hard week, f´n mothersday S007.gif S003.gif


Freitag 6. Mai 2005, 20:23
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Registriert: Montag 28. März 2005, 23:13
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Wohnort: Meistens Hamburg
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dawiede hat geschrieben:
wuschel hat geschrieben:

thanks for the link dosi. my first thougts were that he could be one of those men who where "auf decke", but i wasn´t sure - now i am.


There is also a good film about the mothers of two members who were members of the strike. I will try to find out the name


You should read the text of the link completely S014.gif :

Zu dem Hungerstreik gibt es einen Spielfilm mit dem Titel "Some Mothers Sons" (Regie: Terry George), der sehr zu empfehlen ist. Zu deutsch hieß der Film denn auch korrekt zunächst "Mutter und Söhne", bevor ihn Moralapostel und ganz spezielle Nordirlandexperten mit dem Titel "Unversöhnlicher Haß" versehen haben.


Freitag 6. Mai 2005, 20:24
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Registriert: Dienstag 29. März 2005, 16:36
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Wohnort: Balloch, Scotland
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Don't want to keep going on about it S003.gif but the 'Celtic Minded' book explains the Celtic/Ireland situation very well from a number of different perspectives!

Also another very good book about the Hunger Strikers is Ten Men Dead - its very moving.


Freitag 6. Mai 2005, 21:16
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Registriert: Montag 28. März 2005, 23:56
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For the german guys who want to learn something about the whole conflict in "Northern" Ireland could also read the book:

"Nordirland am Rande des Friedens" von Pit Wuhrer (Taz Autor)

If somebody wants to read the book, he can get it from me...


Samstag 7. Mai 2005, 10:57
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Registriert: Montag 28. März 2005, 23:56
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The Life and Times of Bobby Sands
By Gerry Adams

Bobby Sands was twenty-seven years old and sixty-six days on hunger strike when he died in the H-Blocks of Long Kesh, on 5th May 1981. The young IRA Volunteer, who had spent almost the last nine years of his short life in prison, was world-famous by the time of his death, having been elected to the British parliament and having withstood pressures, political and moral, for him to abandon his fast which was aimed at rebutting the British government's attempts to criminalise the struggle for Irish freedom by criminalising Irish political prisoners.

Apart from all of the very obvious historical and political contradictions for the British in pursuing such a strategy, they had one other immediate problem: hundreds of prisoners were held in Long Kesh under a regime of political or special category status. This status had been introduced by the British government in June 1972 after a successful hunger strike by republican prisoners in Belfast jail. But now as part of its ridiculous new strategy, the London government dealt with this anomaly by introducing legislation which classified all prisoners arrested and sentenced after March 1st 1976 as criminals.

I first met Bobby in the cages of Long Kesh where we were held with special category status as political prisoners. From our cage, Cage 11, we could see the building site where the H-Blocks were being constructed to house prisoners sentenced under London's new criminalisation legislation.


In those days Bobby was a slightly-built young man with a mane of long hair, an intense manner whether engaged in a game of football, a political discussion or a guitar lesson. He read extensively, and wrote quite a few arrangements and songs for his guitar.
But who was Bobby Sands? He was an ordinary young Irish man who lived and died in the extraordinary conditions which existed in the occupied part of Ireland. In the course of his short life he came to challenge these unjust conditions in an extraordinarily heroic and unselfishly courageous way.


He was born in 1954 in Rathcoole, a predominantly loyalist district of North Belfast. He always had an interest in Irish history and when the Civil Rights Movement burst on the streets in 1968 the reaction of the RUC to peaceful protest evoked a nationalist response in the hearts of most Catholic youths.


Bobby left school in June 1969 and worked as an apprentice coach-builder for the next three years. He never expressed any sectarian attitudes. In fact, Bobby ran for a well-known Protestant club - the Willowfield Temperance Harriers. But at work he came under increasing intimidation and by 1972 the Sands family were forced out of their home by threats and attacks.


They moved to Twinbrook - a new housing estate in nationalist West Belfast. Eighteen-year old Bobby was the eldest in a family of four children, the others being Marcella, Bernadette and John.


Bobby joined the Irish Republican Army in his late teens and in 1973 at the age of eighteen he was arrested and sentenced to five years' imprisonment on an arms charge. That was when I met him. I had been caught attempting to escape from Long Kesh internment camp, was charged and was now a sentenced prisoner. We shared Cage 11 with a large number of other men including some who would go on to play pivotal roles in the H-Block struggle: Brendan Hughes, Brendan (Bik) McFarlane, Larry Marley and Pat Beag McGeown among others.


Bobby was released from Cage 11 in April 1976 and rejoined the struggle. As well as engaging in IRA activity he worked within his local community in Twinbrook. He helped to form a tenants association and a youth club. He was also married with a three-year-old son, Gerard.


However, six months after his release, Bobby was arrested on active-service following a bomb attack on a furniture warehouse. There was a gun battle between the IRA unit and the RUC and two of Bobby's comrades were wounded. One shortarm was caught in the car and the four occupants were all charged with possession of this one gun. Bobby was taken to Castlereagh where he was interrogated for seven days. He refused to talk to the Special Branch detectives and refused to recognise the court when charged. One of those also arrested with him was Joe McDonnell who replaced Bobby on hunger strike after his death and who himself eventually died after sixty-one days on 8th July 1981.


Bobby was sentenced to fourteen years' imprisonment in September 1977. This time, in keeping with Britain's attempts to project militant Irish Republicanism as a criminal conspiracy, he was denied special category or political status and was imprisoned as an 'ordinary prisoner' in the H-Blocks of Long Kesh.

For over a year the British government had been attempting to force the political prisoners in the H-Blocks and in Armagh prison to conform to regulations, to wear a British criminal uniform and carry out compulsory menial, often degrading, prison work.
The Irish republican prisoners who had been arrested under special laws, interrogated in special interrogation centres and sentenced in special non-jury courts refused to be criminalised, to wear the prison uniform or to carry out prison work. In order to keep themselves warm the prisoners wrapped themselves in a blanket - and so the blanket protest began.


For years the prisoners were held in solitary confinement and subjected to beatings, although eventually, due to overcrowding, many came to share a cell with another blanket man. In Armagh prison republican women also resisted the criminalisation programme and they too were persecuted by warders.


In March 1978 the prison authorities in a further attempt to break their will refused the H-Block prisoners access to toilets and washing facilities and forced the prisoners to live in filthy conditions. This no wash/no slop-out protest continued until Match 1981.
Shortly after he arrived in the H-Block, Bobby Sands was selected as PRO of the blanket men. His statements from the Blocks traced developments within the prison: the buildup of the blanket protest, the beginning of the no wash protest, the beatings, cell shifts, and mirror searches, and throughout it all the determination and dignity of the blanket men, who, despite the violence and the propaganda of British government, continued with the longest prison protest ever by Irish republicans.


The policy of attacking and demoralising a struggle by attacking prisoners had been employed before by the British against past generations of IRA Volunteers following the 1916 Rising. (Indeed, Britain, which first invented the concentration camp in South Africa, had also attempted to criminalise nationalist movements in its restless colonies.) In resisting criminalisation IRA volunteers had resorted to the hunger strike protest, the most famous case being that of Terence MacSwiney MP, Lord Mayor of Cork, who died on the seventy-fifth day of hunger strike in Brixton prison in 1920. (MacSwiney's protest directly inspired Mahatma Gandhi.)


In 1980 despite the best efforts of a broad based campaign of support and after years of prison protest the British government persisted with its criminalisation strategy. In Autumn of that year a number of H-Block men and Armagh women began a hunger strike which lasted for fifty-three days, and which ended without fatalities when the British government promised to introduce a more liberal prison regime. Bobby, who was not on this hunger strike, had succeeded Brendan Hughes as the Officer Commanding of the prisoners.


It was the failure of the British government to live up to the settlement of the first hunger strike and to implement a promised enlightened prison regime which directly forced Bobby and his comrades onto a second hunger strike. He led the hunger strike on 1 March 1981, two weeks ahead of Francis Hughes, hoping that the sacrifice of his life and the political repercussions which it would unleash would perhaps force the British government into a settlement before any more of his comrades would have to die.
Shortly after Bobby went on hunger strike, the independent MP for Fermanagh/South Tyrone, Frank Maguire, who was a champion of the prisoners' cause, died of a heart attack. In the ensuing by-election Bobby stood on a "political prisoner" ticket and was elected as MP for Fermanagh/South Tyrone in a blaze of international publicity.
The result of this historic action showed the extent of support for the prisoners among the nationalist people - British propaganda had described the prisoners as having no support - and should have been the occasion for the British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, to settle the hunger strike crisis. Instead, the British not only refused to negotiate but enacted legislation to change the electoral law and prevent another republican prisoner candidate from standing for election. So much for British democracy!

The election, held against a background of harassment and intimidation of election workers by British crown forces, was unique, not least because of pressure put upon the nationalist electorate by the SDLP leadership, the Catholic hierarchy, and British politicians. Despite these pressures, Bobby Sands received 30,492 votes, a clear sign - for those who doubted it - that the nationalist people recognised republican prisoners as political prisoners and supported their prison struggle.
But despite the election result, the British government remained intransigent. On 5 May, IRA Volunteer Bobby Sands MP died on the sixty-sixth day of hunger strike. His name became a household word in Ireland, and his sacrifice, like that of those who followed him, overturned British propaganda on Ireland and had a real effect in advancing the cause of Irish Freedom.


By August 1981, nine other blanket men - Francis Hughes, Raymond McCreesh, Patsy O Hara, Joe McDonnell, Martin Hurson, Kevin Lynch, Kieran Doherty, Thomas McElwee and Micky Devine, also died on hunger strike.
On Saturday 3 October 1981 the prisoners reluctantly abandoned their hunger strike after a series of incidents in which families, encouraged by a campaign waged by the Catholic Church, sanctioned medical intervention when their sons or husbands lapsed into unconsciousness. The prisoners were effectively robbed of the weapon of the hunger strike and so decided to end the historic fast which had lasted a marathon of two hundred and seventeen days.

As well as being the leader of the blanket men and of the second hunger strike, Bobby Sands was also the most prolific writer among the H-Block prisoners. He not only wrote press statements, but he also wrote short stories and poems under the pen name "Marcella", his sister's name, which were published in Republican News and then in the newly merged An Phoblacht/Republican News after February 1979.
Bobby's writings span the last four years of his life in H-Block 3, 4, 5, or 6. They were written on pieces of government issue toilet roll or on the rice paper of contraband cigarette roll-ups with the refill of a biro pen which he kept hidden inside his body. He also wrote as "a young West Belfast republican" and as PRO of the blanket men in the H-Blocks 3, 4, and 6. This collection contains creative pieces - writing of an extremely high standard - as Bobby describes penal life in a compelling and graphic manner. When one recalls that all of his writing was accomplished in almost impossible conditions, one cannot but admire his achievement, an example of the ingenuity and determination of the republican prisoners about whom he writes.


There is a premonition of personal tragedy running through his writings: that his H-Block cell will, literally, become a tomb. His admiration for his comrades and his feelings for supporters and for oppressed people outside of prison emerge in the words which he expertly uses as a weapon against a regime which tries vainly to break and dehumanise him. Bobby's diary is a unique piece of literature, his last written words.

During his formative years Bobby, as he says himself, was "a budding ornithologist." As one well-known H-Block ballad goes, "…A happy boy through green fields ran/And kept God's and man's laws." He also read and was influenced by the nationalist poet Ethna Carrberry (Anna McManus) who coincidentally also grew up in Belfast.
So Bobby put many of his own thoughts into verse. My favourite is "The Rhythm of Time" but his H-Block Trilogy must surely rank with Wilde's The Ballad of Reading Gaol and has recently and very brilliantly been staged as a drama by H-Block prisoners.Two of bobby's songs, "Back Home in Derry" and "McIlhattan" were also recorded by Christy Moore.


In his own poetry Bobby asserts that the spirit of freedom and injustice has been innate to humankind from the beginning. In tracing this spirit he demonstrates an exceptional grasp of history and memory recall. (He was denied books, newspapers, radio or TV, and mental stimulation for the last four years of his life.) Wat the Tyler, for example, was an English peasant who in 1381 challenged and led an uprising against the English monarchy. The persecuted early Christians, slaves, peasants, native American Indians and Irish republican freedom fighters share the stage of history against tyranny. And the driving force against oppression, as Bobby concludes, is the moral superiority of the oppressed.


Gerry Adams, Belfast, Ireland.


Samstag 7. Mai 2005, 11:15
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