#GazaUnderAttack – Israel might be winning the battle, but they are losing the war!

July 30, 2014

gaza kids

Today is day 22 of the Israeli offensive into Gaza. Yet again we see in this mornings news that ANOTHER UN school has been hit by Israeli rockets, 19 killed and 100 injured, as well as a busy city market, killing 15 and wounding dozens. So far, since this attack began there has been more than 1,200 deaths in Gaza, over 200 children killed, while 3 people have died in Israel. Is that proportional? So many children have been injured and killed that Jon Snow, a reporter with Channnel 4 in the UK, has gone as far as asking: Is this a war on children?

The photo above is of 3 of the 4 Bakr family, just seconds before being killed on the beach in Gaza on the 15th of July. However Israel may try to justify their actions, their hollow words are not being accepted by the Irish people. More and more “normal” people are standing up to voice their anger against Israels onslaught, including many people who, as they say themselves, supported Israel in the past. Of course there are those who will defend Israel to the end and who are not going to waver from their pro Zionist position (examples of endless dialogue on Brazil forum here and here), but what is of interest to me, are the millions of normal people who are seeing the reality from Gaza and from that taking a stand for Justice.

The nature of how we receive information has changed radically. Of course the main ways are still there: reading the newspapers, listening to the radio, watching TV. But now people are also getting news via their social media networks; they see disgusting images and videos in their Twitter and Facebook feeds of the reality from the ground. Not only do people see this, but they are also quickly passing on this information on their social media to friends and family in their social networks, little by little the critical dissemination of the truth is unfolding.

It has been claimed that Israel always fight their wars on two fronts; the actual battle ground but also the “communication war”, whose purpose is to sway public opinion to justify their actions. Many commentators have said we are witnessing a critical juncture; it seems that as the ground war goes on further, with all its death and destruction, that Israel is quickly losing the war for hearts and minds. We are seeing much of mainstream media, in the past absolute defenders of Israel, now allowing critical voices and opinions to be expressed. For more on this I would direct you to Paul Mason’s excellent article; “Why Israel is losing the social media war over Gaza” and “Why Israel Is Losing the American Media War” by Benjamin Wallace-Wells.

In regards to the Irish dialogue on Gaza and the shifting of public opinion, I would like to direct you to two very important radio shows that happened last week on the national radio station RTE, both on Liveline. For those not accustomed to Irish ways, it is the show where the nation phones in to “talk to Joe (Duffy)”, to moan about the problems of the day, air their grievances etc. Last week though much time was devoted to covering the reality of the suffering in Gaza, the reasons for the conflict and as to how peace can be achieved. Anyone who listened could find very very little credibility in Israel supporter spin and could only identify with the sheer horror being experienced by the people in the worlds “largest open air prison”; The Gaza Strip. Below are links to podcasts of both shows as well as some more background on the situation. So have a listen and make your own mind up.

Thankfully huge numbers of Irish people have already taken to the streets, are pushing at the government to take real steps in regards to diplomatic relations with the rogue state of Israel. Even Irish doctors have taken a firm stand in denouncing the criminal acts of Israel. In fact again Ireland is being recognized internationally for the high level of support it is making in solidarity with those in Gaza. Hopefully their actions will further inspire people in other countries to do likewise, like Brazil, where this Irishman finds himself, where he is still a little shocked to see so little commentary and support from friends, as well as the showing of actual solidarity in the streets.

Stop #GazaUnderAttack – No to Israeli war crimes – No the ILLEGAL siege of Gaza – Yes to a peaceful transition to the 2 state solution – FREEDOM FOR GAZA – FREEDOM FOR PALESTINE.

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Sinn Féin leading a democratic peoples revolution in Ireland, again?

May 26, 2014

‘Sinn Féin hasn’t had this strength since 1918′ – Gerry Adams

Interesting times in Ireland again. Time to truly leave Civil war politics in the South and move on?

On Friday it was the local and European elections in Ireland, Sinn Féin have scored massively in local elections, especially in the cities. They are set to be the largest party in Belfast, Dublin, Derry, Cork city councils. The mixed bag of independents and small parties also scored hugely. Sinn Fein are an island wide party, not the only one, as People Before Profit also are island wide and took seats.

The established political system has been given a massive shake up, with ex TD Joe Higgins on RTE radio calling it nothing short of a “democratic revolution for change”. Present Irish Fine Gael minister, Leo Varadkar went as far as saying he could see Sinn Féin leading the next government, something considered impossible only five years ago. No one was expecting such a sea change, who knows what it might lead to further down the line?

Going back to 1918, we remember what huge changes came from little sparks. As it is not the first time that there has been a huge surge in support for Sinn Fein. Soon after the failed rebellion of 1916, after executions and imprisonment of many Irish rebels, the party grew massively all over the island. They formed their own illegal government and fought a war for Irish freedom, the results of which were the half win of a partitioned island that led to a bloody civil war and the party’s demise. But the world took note; a small island nation stood up to the greatest empire the world had ever seen, the took them on and they forced change. Sinn Fein have done it before, might this weekend be the first step in another chapter in that story?

BoaOpLgCcAEiU7g

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#IrishLegends: Philo – Irelands first rocker

March 16, 2014

Phil Lynott, poet, song writer, lead singer and class bassist with Thin Lizzy

philo big

Philip Parris “Phil” Lynott (/ˈlnət/; 20 August 1949 – 4 January 1986) was an Irish singer and musician. His most commercially successful group was Thin Lizzy, in which he was the founding member, principal songwriter, lead vocalist and bassist. He later also found success as a solo artist.

Growing up in Dublin in the 1960s, Lynott fronted several bands as a lead vocalist, most notably Skid Row alongside Gary Moore, before learning the bass guitar and forming Thin Lizzy in 1969. After initial success with Whiskey in the Jar, the band found strong commercial success in the mid-1970s with hits such as “The Boys Are Back in Town“, “Jailbreak” and “Waiting for an Alibi“, and became a popular live attraction due to the combination of Lynott’s vocal and songwriting skills and the use of dual lead guitars. Towards the end of the 1970s, Lynott also embarked upon a solo career, published two books of poetry,[1] and after Thin Lizzy disbanded, he assembled and fronted the band Grand Slam, of which he was the leader until it folded in 1985.

He subsequently had major UK success with Moore with the song “Out in the Fields“, followed by a minor hit “Nineteen”, before his death on 4 January 1986. He remains a popular figure in the rock world, and in 2005, a statue was erected in his memory.       (via wikipedia)

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30 years ago today, Luke Kelly died

January 31, 2014

0005757b-18030 years ago today, Luke Kelly died. Here is a tribute to a Dublin legend.

Luke Kelly died on the 30th of January 1984. At the age of 43 he was still a young man with so much left to give. Unfortunately Liam Clancy (subsequently another great legend lost..) was unable to attend the funeral, so instead he wrote this moving tribute for his old friend:

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Bring Che back to Kilkee #HonTheBanner

September 5, 2013

Bring Che back to Kilkee #HonTheBanner #AnClárAbú #BackTheBanner #CLARE https://www.change.org/petitions/clare-county-council-re-instate-the-iconic-che-guevara-mural Re-instate the mural pic.twitter.com/3VVFqmroKQ

che 2

via Annual ‘Che Do Bheatha’ Festival, Kilke  Website here

#Che #AmericanTourists #Clare #kilkee #BackTheBanner

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BOLD events @ Dublin, Ireland, August 2013

August 25, 2013

(Work in progress, subject to change and modification as time goes on..)

bold dunk2

Wed 28 – Liffey walk – food, chat, sups, music… WWW (world wide windows) chat @ seomra spraoí

Thr 29 – mucky hands day: community gardens, lifeline, Dublin city roof farm, tree planting, Upstar’s pop up park Granby Park,

Fri 30 – botanic spine bike ride – 80’s party @ Seomra Spraoi

Sat 31 –  Dublin city arty arky walk, mapping and connecting some of Dublins “independent spaces” – chat n sups @ siteation

Fuspey: Blog: http://itsafunnyoldworld.wordpress.com/ | twitter

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Finishing up tunes – a homage to all the grovers…

August 10, 2013

a while back in our monday night bar, the catalan lad played “alternative ulster” by SLF (stiff little fingers) and it brought me back, back to the time of sweating and moshing at the end of the grove…

heres a hats off to all those (lucky ones) that made it to the grove

The Grove Show

The Grove was known as the Northside‘s (of Dublin, Ireland) original alternative disco, because the music being played there was different to anything being played in any discos in Dublin throughout the whole 30 years of its existence. (e.g. Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Rolling Stones, The Doors, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Yes, Jackson Browne, Focus, Deep Purple, Wings, Black Sabbath, Steely Dan, Golden Earring, Queen, The Eagles, ZZ Top, The Boomtown Rats, Supertramp, Guns N’ Roses, Rory Gallagher, Fleetwood Mac, Stiff Little Fingers, Thin Lizzy, Sex Pistols, Horslips, Roxy Music, Joy Division, UFO, Genesis, U2, Bruce Springsteen, The Ramones, Whitesnake, Simple Minds, The Cure, Metallica, The Cult, Neil Young, Nirvana, Ian Dury and the Blockheads, AC/DC, B52s, Pearl Jam, Talking Heads, plus many others).Cecil Nolan was the DJ for the whole 30 years at the Grove until it closed in 1997. Cecil influenced the musical taste of three generations of young northside Dubliners, and shaped their record and CD collections as well. The list of Grove alumni that went on to successful careers on radio and TV is truly impressive, and many of Ireland’s best known media personalities regularly wax lyrical about their time at the Grove and acknowledge the debt they owe Cecil.

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