Wednesday, September 15, 2010


The guerilla group, the Real IRA (RIRA) has threatened to attack the British banking inustry.  The question  is can they actually do it.  Some say the group is little more than a rag tag operation of Northern Irish dissidents.  Others give it more credence than that.

The group has set off bombs in London before including attacks at MI5 headquarters, and the BBC.

The Real IRA (RIRA), also known as Óglaigh na hÉireann, is a socialist republican guerilla group that was formed by hardliners who broke out of the provisional IRA when it was clear that the provisionals would go along with the good Friday agreement and subsequently call a ceasefire with the northern Ireland Unionists.  The group believes  "that Ireland should be ruled by the Irish and that the only way to acheive that end is through armed struggle. 

In answer to querstions from a Derry based news station in 2003, the group wrote,”We remain convinced that no just and final political settlement can be arrived at between the Irish people and the people of Britain and between the Nationalist and the Unionist communities until the British military and political presence is totally removed from the equation. It is also important to point out that the political package enshrined in the Belfast agreement had to be acceptable to and ratified by an external political power i.e. the British Government before it was even presented to the Irish people. We regard this as a blatant usurpation of the right of the Irish people to self-determination.”

In their New Year's statement this year, they wrote, ""The Irish Republican Army will continue to carry out armed attacks against the British military and political apparatus in Ireland and those who assist in anyway their illegal occupation."  The RIRA statement also claimed British intelligence were behind a series of sectarian attacks which have been blamed on republicans. "The last year has seen a marked increase in the activities of MI5 inspired counter gangs masquerading as republicans, these gangs will be seen for what they are by the republican base and their attempts to bring the republican movement into disrepute will not be tolerated. It is also clear that such groups are behind an increase in sectarian attacks across the six counties, sectarianism is anathema to republicanism and serves the interests of British imperialism in Ireland, not the republican position."

On august 15 1998 a bomb detonated in the city center of the Northern Irish town of Omagh. 29 people were killed and 100-300 people were injured (reports vary). The devastating attack was probably a mistake, the target for the bombs was probably supposed to be the courthouse of Omaha targeted as a symbolic target. The courthouse is an economic, administrative, legal, and military center and an attack against it could be identified as an attack on the British presence and rule as a whole.  The attack cost RIRA a great deal of popular support.  Just about every time they are mentioned by the police or the British that bomb attack is brought up still.

The web site Oslaish Na Heiream writes of the bombing, "Another republican group, which did not come forward, is also thought to have had a role in the operation; and the Royal Ulster Constabulary is suspected of collusion.  Although three warnings were issued and the location given, video footage of the incident shows the RUC moving people into rather than away from the danger, thus killing 29 people and injuring hundreds."

RIRA claims now to be growing fast.  It is believed that their main support base is believed to be north Louth and South Armagh.

MI5 apparently takes the group, and other dissidents seriously.  The Derry Jouranl reported two weeks ago "MI5 has been redirecting some its resources away from investigations into Al-Qaeda towards tracking the Continuity IRA, the Real IRA and Óglaigh na hÉireann, according to the English papers."

The Belfast Telegraph reported last month that the group was believed to be raising money by extorting drug dealers in Dublin and Cork.  

One element in the Real IRA's recent activity has been a wave of so-called "punishment" shootings and beatings of those they deem "antisocial elements" in nationalist working class areas.  "These actions are taken as a last resort to protect the community. We are an integral part of the community and the people in them are our eyes and ears. The fact is that the British police force is rejected by republican communities and people naturally turn to us for help.
"The vast majority of issues are resolved by negotiation, a small percentage require more direct forms of intervention including punishment shootings and expulsions," they said.

The threat against the British banking system is the first time the Real IRA has engaged in such open anti-capitalist rhetoric or focused on the role of the banking system.
The leaders also threatened to intensify the group's terror campaign on all fronts.
"Realistically, it is important to acknowledge that we have regrouped and reorganised and emerged from a turbulent period in republican history.
"We have already shown our capacity to launch attacks on the British military, judicial, and policing infrastructure. As we rebuild, we are confident that we will increase the volume and effectiveness of attacks," the organisation said.
The 32 County Sovereignty Committee shares the same political philosophy of the Real IRA, although its member deny being the groups political wing.  Late last month Gary Donnelly ,a member of the 32 County Sovereignty Movement, wasaccused of committing an offence under terrorism legislation.
Gary Donnelly, 39, of Sackville Court, is charged with possessing a mobile phone in such circumstances to give rise to a reasonable suspicion that it was to be used for terrorism.  Donnelly labeled the charges rediculous.  He said, "I am being set up for my political beliefs."  As he was being charged at the Londonderry courthouse protesters gathered outside and clashed with police.

The following article is from  the Londonderry Sentinel.


A REAL IRA statement that it has regrouped and is planning attacks on bankers and financial institutions was delivered in a Godfather-like encounter in the public toilet of a premises on the Londonderry/Donegal/Tyrone border.
Veteran Belfast journalist Henry McDonald was instructed to travel to the North West after making contact with republican intermediaries in a bid to secure a response from the Real IRA to a list of questions posed on behalf of the Guardian newspaper.

According to Mr McDonald he was summonsed to a location near the border and told to go into the public toilet and reach behind the cistern where he found a USB key inside a surgical glove.
Therein was a detailed response to a list of questions he had put to the Real IRA from its national leadership.

Amongst the startling claims was a statement of intent to pursue a violent anti-capitalist agenda, through which banks and financial institutions would be targetted.

The statement read: "We have a track record of attacking high-profile economic targets and financial institutions such as the City of London. 

"The role of bankers and the institutions they serve in financing Britain's colonial and capitalist system has not gone unnoticed.

"Let's not forget that the bankers are the next-door neighbours of the politicians. Most people can see the picture: the bankers grease the politicians' palms, the politicians bail out the bankers with public funds, the bankers pay themselves fat bonuses and loan the money back to the public with interest. 

"It's essentially a crime spree that benefits a social elite at the expense of many millions of victims."

The group also claimed to have regrouped following a "turbulent period in republican history."

It claimed: "We have already shown our capacity to launch attacks on the British military, judicial, and policing infrastructure. As we rebuild, we are confident that we will increase the volume and effectiveness of attacks."

It also pointed to the replacement of the army's Operation Banner by Operation Helvetic and suggested republican communities were being victimised in Northern Ireland.

"From the point of view of republican communities, there is still a heavily armed British police force that casually uses plastic baton rounds, CS gas and Tasers, carry out house raids, stop and search operations and general harassment.

"There's still a 5,000-strong British army garrison, a new MI5 HQ in Belfast, and a British secretary of state. 

"Republican communities are still subjected to sectarian parades and the right to protest is being met with intimidation and violence."
The organisation also said it would be willing to talk if the ending of the "illegal British occupation of Ireland" was on the agenda.

"The IRA is not unwilling to talk, in fact there needs to be talks … however, talks need to deal with the root cause of the conflict, namely the illegal British occupation of Ireland," it stated.

"We are mindful, though, that the history of such approaches from the British has been characterised by a lack of integrity, a lack of willingness to address the causes of conflict, and has been motivated by a self-serving agenda," it added.

As has now become customary the Real IRA also attacked Sinn Féin Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness as a manager of British rule.

"Martin McGuinness is a British Crown minister who has a vested interest in causing mischief among republicans.
"His job is to administer the Queen of England's writ in Ireland...However, if he has any evidence to back up his claims, he should make it public," the Real IRA said.

No comments: