The Newsletter informs us that Orangemen are to be allowed to march at a St Patrick's Day parade in Cork. Hopefully a (likely) republican campaign of threats and intimidation, much like the shenanigans which preceded the proposed Orange march in Dublin a few years ago, will not be permitted to derail the participation of Loyal Order members in a parade in Ireland's second largest city.
However, I would like to draw your attention to the contrasting approaches taken by adherents of Irish nationalist ideology to the question of marching in different locations. On Slugger O'Toole we have 'George', an historian of highly dubious quality, venturing the following opinion on the presence of Orange feet in Cork City:
'I believe strong assurances have been given that no political or terrorist insignia will be worn by any of the Orange Order participants, who I think will be from a Belfast lodge. I assume they will keep their word.
The Irish Defence Forces will be parading some military hardware in the same parade so that could be fun if they're right behind them.
Good to see Belfast City Council footing the bill too - for the OO bit that is.'
A little earlier, in An Phoblacht, I came across the following announcement in the 'Events' section.
'Thurs 3 Mar 2005: Wolfe Tone Society monthly organising meeting at the Camden Irish Centre, Murray Street, London NW1 starts 8pm prompt. Meet in bar; Sun 13 Mar: St Patrick's Day Parade through Central London. Wolfe Tone Society section assemble 11am Hyde Park Corner (Nearest tube station Hyde Park ). Parade Finishes in Trafalgar Square. Please make an effort to show a Republican presence on the parade; Sat 2 April: Wolfe Tone Society 2nd Annual Dinner & Dance Guest of Honour Martin Ferris TD Sinn Fein at the Emerald Rooms, GAA Club, Ruislip, West End Road, South Ruislip. Tickets: £35. Please order early as event was over subscribed last year.'
What a contrast, eh? If a section of people loyal to the United Kingdom wish to parade in an Irish city, they must divest themselves of any trappings of their raison d'etre (we'll leave aside the ignorant and erroneous comment about Orangemen wearing terrorist regalia). On the contrary, if the supporters of a terrorist organisation loyal to the concept of an all-Ireland state wish to congregate in a British city, they can do so without let or hindrance. Moreover, they can publicise the fact by ensuring the emblems of their loyalties are on open display to some of the people who might have been victims of their heroes' evil deeds. That's republicanism for you: fundamentally hypocritical to the last.
By the way, if people wish to contact the said GAA club to protest against the invitation to terrorist filth, they can contact the club:
West End Road
Middx HA4 6QX
(020 8842 2622)