This is the introduction to one of the founding fathers of the country of Argentina. In the course of time the people named two Argentine navy ships after this important leader of their country. The second was sunk in 1982 by the British Navy during what we call the “Falklands War.”
Just before 4pm on May 2nd 1982, on Margaret Thatcher’s instructions, the Belgrano was sunk while still outside the British imposed “Total Exclusion Zone.”
I don’t know the niceties of naval warfare law, but for thirty years people have argued over whether or not the Belgrano should have been sunk. One thing that is indisputable is the 323 people on board at the time, including two civilians, were killed.
In the village of Ahoghill there is a housing development called ‘Belgrano.’ It appears that the development was called this in honour of the great British naval victory of the Falklands War.
Raymond McCreesh was an Irish lad who died in the fight for Irish freedom. Irish freedom is something that is sort of forgotten about at the moment; it is not as important as a big house or a good teacher’s pension.
But there was once a generation of men and women who were prepared to lay down all for the common good; men and women who believed that English rule in Ireland was wrong and were prepared to fight to get rid of it.
In our modern, post freedom seeking days, we look askance on such folly, but Bobby Sands, Francie Hughes and Raymond McCreesh and others were men who believed in something, who held values of justice and truth and who were true to the end.
“One Unionist wanted “to register our strong anger, disappointment and disgust at the decision that was due to be taken”.
The matter has been an ongoing controversy, with the Equality Commission criticising the council last April for retaining the name. The commission said the decision went against the council's equality scheme and recommended it be reviewed.” (BBC News)
This was about the decision of Newry Council to keep the name of Raymond McCreesh on a park in the area.
I feel no anger or disgust at the calling of a park after an honourable man such as Raymond McCreesh, but I wonder at a people who celebrate the sinking of a ship where 323 people are killed. Are the unionists so blind that they cannot see a contradiction here?
Another point, every time we see a photo of Stormont, who is standing with his hand in the air, honoured and respected as a great leader?
“Throughout 1913 Major Crawford, with the use of aliases and disguises, had attempted to smuggle in arms bought in Great Britain and Imperial Germany, but vigilant customs officials had seized the goods at the docks.
In one instance, patrol boats thwarted a gun-running attempt to Carrigart in northern County Donegal carried out by Lord Leitrim. Despite these setbacks, Major Crawford convinced the Ulster Unionist Council that he could provide the weapons and ammunition needed "to equip the entire UVF". Edward Carson said in response: I'll see you through this business, even if I should have to go to prison for it.”
Edward Carson, gun runner, stands proudly at the gates of Stormont, hand held high in victory.
What is the old saying: ‘One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter.’
When you think of it, and it has just struck me now as I write this, there has been some change in the psyche of the Irish people in these past twenty to thirty years. Irish freedom, justice and truth, things that we used to hold dear, are now mocked and shrugged off as irrelevant: everyone decides their own issues.
Here is a question I have just come up with. In 1914 and again in 1939 thousands of people from these islands willingly marched off to war to fight against what they perceived to be a great wrong.
What would it take today to get the young people of Britain and Ireland to go out to fight for the common good? What cause would you consider worth dying for?
I can’t think of any row or war in the world at the moment that would make the people rise up and say, enough is enough. Putin rules Russia with an iron fist and he is invading his neighbours willy nilly and Germany and France are doing all in their power to appease him.
“I cannot imagine any situation in which improved equipment for the Ukrainian army leads to President Putin being so impressed that he believes he will lose militarily,” she Mrs Merkel. “I have to put it that bluntly.” (Daily Telegraph)
When it comes to justice and right, national interests trumps all. Perhaps if Isis were boarding the ferry at Dover we would begin to worry.
That is the problem with the West, we have grown old and tired. Let’s bring our question a little nearer home. What injustice would have to happen in Northern Ireland to bring the crowds onto the streets again?
To be honest, I can’t think of any. Is Irish unity worth dying for today? Could Carson and his friends hold the country to ransom with a threat of war? I doubt it: people would just shrug their shoulders and say that it has nothing to do with me.
It’s a bit like we are doing with the Ukraine, really. The war in the Ukraine and the way that the west is dealing with it reveals a lot about ‘Realpolitik’ in its most ugly form. Germany and France are bending over backwards to allow Russia to do whatever it wants in that unfortunate country; they have stopped America from arming the legitimate army of the Ukraine while watching the Russians arm the people on their side.
Basically, the lives of thousands of people shall be lost because Germany and France don’t want to annoy Putin. Russia is bigger than them and could cause them trouble.
But on the other hand we have little Greece. Little Greece is broke and owes the bigger Germans a ball of money.
Watch how Führer Merkel lords it over little Greece with talk of agreements and legality, while she watches Russia break whatever agreements it makes and throw legality in her face. Even Ireland is against Greece, but then Enda the Red has to do whatever Merkel says or he will have no money at all.
There are few things that you can be sure of but one thing is this: politics is not about truth or justice. Soon the poor won’t be able to eat. Well, that’s if the conservatives get their way.
“The Conservatives plan to tell obese people on welfare that they will lose their sickness benefit if they do not diet.
The move is the party’s latest foray into reducing welfare costs and they also want to see drug addicts and alcoholics stripped of benefits if they refuse treatment plans.
While playing to many traditional Tory voters, it will infuriate addiction and other health charities which have previously criticised similar proposals.” (The Independent)
However, the Conservatives need to be careful or their beloved policy could backfire. A study done in the USA in 2004 found that conservative people were more likely to be considerably overweight than liberal or labour voters. Perhaps that is why we call them ‘fatcats.’
The study showed that 21.3% of democratic voters were ‘considerably overweight’ compared to 37.6% of republican voters.
It appears that if you are overweight, a drug addict or an alcoholic and you don’t go for help then the Conservatives are going to make sure you get no money.
Do you remember years ago we went through this sort of thing with prison sentences? The Labour and Conservatives were beating the head of each other to get handing out harsher sentences. Now all that has been sorted and we have a new undeserving poor, the obese, the druggie and the alky.
While the rich of England with the help of HSBC have billions stashed away in Swiss bank accounts, not paying a penny of tax, the conservatives are going to take a pittance of the poor old alcoholic.
“In order to vote conservative you have to be a ten stone teetotaller who takes one aspirin every year to ward of flu,” said a local conservative candidate on Saturday evening. “Any more than that and go vote for labour, the party of fatties.”
Then shortly after all us fatties were told we could die in the streets, Ed Miliband hit out at HMRC:
“There will be a review of HM Revenue and Customs' approach to tax evasion and avoidance if Labour comes to power, Ed Miliband has said. He told the Welsh Labour conference HMRC needed to "do a much better job".
Mr Miliband also accused the coalition of "shrugging its shoulders" on tax avoidance - which he claimed had left a £34bn hole in the UK's finances. A Conservative spokesman said the "culture and practices of HMRC went wrong under Labour".
Addressing the conference, Mr Miliband said: ‘In Britain today we risk having one rule for the rich and powerful and another for everybody else.’” (BBC News)
I think if anything shows the stupidity of Labour it is that last sentence: ‘In Britain today we risk having one rule for the rich and powerful and another for everybody else.’
A politician who does not know that this has always been the case is in no way fit to run the country.
But on Sunday HSBC put everything right: they apologised for helping rich people avoid tax and for taking part in shady dealings. They even spent the money to take out full page ads in the papers.
“HSBC has published a full-page advert containing an apology in several newspapers, over claims that its Swiss private bank helped clients evade tax.
The advert reproduces an open letter signed by chief executive Stuart Gulliver, which says recent coverage had been "a painful experience".
Whistleblower Herve Falciani has said the UK government should have known about the scandal in 2010.
The UK's Treasury Committee is to conduct an inquiry into the claims. And HM Revenue & Customs met the police and the Serious Fraud Office this week to expand the scope of its investigation into Swiss tax accounts held with HSBC.” (BBC News)
There you have it; recent coverage has been a painful experience. Admitting fault is enough to get you off the hook. It wasn’t the wrongdoing or the poor who were left without that was the painful experience, it was the recent coverage or in other words, it was the people seeing these institutions for what they really are.
There is nothing a person or a group hates as much as being exposed as a fraud. It is the person who sees through us and knows what we are that we really hate. This is why the secularists hate people like Pope Francis, a man who sees things as they are and is not afraid to tell it as it is.
Last Wednesday at his general audience in Rome, Pope Francis said a simple home truth:
“A society with a greedy generation, that doesn’t want to surround itself with children, that considers them above all worrisome, a weight, a risk, is a depressed society,” the Pope said. “The choice to not have children is selfish. Life rejuvenates and acquires energy when it multiplies: It is enriched, not impoverished.”
Francis was judging no one; he was merely stating a fact, but for three days we had the secularists going nuts about Pope Francis judging people. Why is it that these people are so touchy, why is it that every truth spoken has to be seen as a judgement?
It is very simple. People who do not have children because they will interfere with their lifestyle know that they are being selfish—and they will hate anyone who points this out to them. It is human nature to be angry at the person who sees through us.
We all hate it, it has happened to us all, and we can’t even admit it to ourselves. It is part of being human. But this simple fact also keeps us humble. How many times in family life do we have to make allowances for the people around us and they have to do the same for us.
“Selfishness and self-centeredness, this we believe is the root of our problem,” wrote a wise man in 1939. Think about it for a while and you will see that it is as true today as it was then…..and God bless any person who tries to point this out to us!
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the editor but are the views of the writer.
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