New Years Statement
We commend our activists for their diligence and hard work in attempting to secure the integrity of our national sovereignty. We applaud the efforts of others who struggle likewise under their own chosen banner. We send New Year greetings to republican POW’s and their families and rededicate ourselves to their service.
2010 was a year which laid bare the harsh realities of our struggle. In protest against the degradation of strip searching and its vindictive use republican POW’s embarked on a series of actions in protest against the Stormont’s regime’s deliberate policy of attacking republican prisoners. Matched on the outside by regular vigils and marches the political opposition which was generated forced the authorities into negotiations.
With the use of agreed independent arbiters an agreement was reached to the satisfaction of all. However the authorities have resumed their original policy of using strip searching to degrade the prisoners. This was a political decision which has implications for all republicans. An attack on one prisoner is an attack on all prisoners and demands a unified response from all republican organisations. Our resolve must at least match that of the prisoners if we are to successfully confront Stormont’s prison policy.
The recent disclosure of State papers clearly shows that the issue of republican prisoners was a cornerstone in British strategy to undermine our struggle. They clearly show how Dublin also collaborated to achieve the same end. This collaboration now has an added dimension in that former comrades are now part of the British establishment in Ireland. That establishment takes it for granted that its members collaborate in the wider British interest. We openly call on the PSF leadership to come clean and to stop talking out of both sides of their mouths. It is your regime which is inflicting this degradation on republican prisoners. Is this your so called peaceful alternative to Irish unity? It is your actions that define you, not your words, overt or otherwise.
2010 also witnessed seismic events in economic terms. Fianna Fáil’s self serving economics led the State to bankruptcy. It bailed out bankers and developers and levied the bill on ordinary citizens. They privatised profits and socialised losses. They surrendered their so called sovereignty to the International Monetary Fund all the while denying it in drunken interviews to the people. But the real issue for republicans and socialists is that our protests failed to impact on events. The crisis in capitalism, which should have opened up so many opportunities for our cause, was duly addressed by capitalism itself. This is the reality we must face and we must face it pragmatically.
2011 must be a year of introspection and innovation. We must look at ourselves and address our failings. What went before has reached its zenith. We need to explore and devise new ways of getting our message across. We need to be more innovative in our protests. We can no longer be satisfied that our protests simply happen: they must also have meaningful effect.
We address young republicans everywhere; this is your time, it is your era, your society, your technological age, you need to lead the way on this front. Irish society has evolved a new language in which it communicates with itself and we need to learn it. Republicanism needs your ideas to advance. Our communities have the expectation of new initiatives to assist them. We need to demonstrate to our people that our aims are relevant to their everyday lives and represent an enrichment of society.
The continued violation of our national sovereignty has led to the inevitable consequence of armed struggle. Those who are engaging in military operations against British occupation have every right to do so, as they always had throughout our history. The function of the Sovereignty Movement is not to question this right nor question the merits of invoking it but to address the cause which makes it inevitable. This we will continue to do in whatever way we deem to be progressive. Treating the Irish Republican Army as a militia is a deeply flawed approach. Predicating a peace strategy on the exclusion of Irish national rights is doomed to failure.
The 32 County Sovereignty Movement reaffirms our commitment to seeking an end to British Parliamentary activity in our country. The divisions amongst our people can only begin to be resolved when Westminster and its many agendas are finally removed.