Irish National Caucus

Working for justice and praying for peace in Ireland... WELCOME TO THE IRISH NATIONAL CAUCUS BLOG Ceade Mile Failte -- hundred thousand welcomes! We believe the U.S. has a vital role to play by applying a single -- not a double-standard in its foreign policies towards human rights in Ireland. In particular, we believe the U.S. must not subsidize anti-Catholic discrimination in Northern Ireland. That is why the Irish National Caucus in 1984 initiated the MacBride Principles.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Response to Richard Delevan's Comments

(See below for my Response to the following entry in Delevan's blog. I tried to respond on his blog, but my response was cut off. So I started my own blog. Sean)

http://richarddelevan.blogspot.com/

Richard Delevan's sicNotes
A straight shot of socio-political blog with a surreal chaser, from a stray Yank in Ireland.
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Washington's Worst-Kept Secret

RTE has finally reported this morning that Sinn Fein and the other Northern parties won't be invited to the White House this St Patrick's Day - something that will have surprised few after the opinion of every law enforcement, intelligence, political and media organisation in the English-speaking world (bar Sinn Fein's most hardcore supporters) had pinned the Northern Bank robbery on the IRA, and the Chinese Wall between the IRA and Sinn Fein had come down, and the Robert McCartney murder had turned a segment of Northern nationalism against Sinn Fein.

The real surprise is that it took so long. We suspect the reason was a debate going on between London, Dublin, Washington and the Irish American squeaky wheels about whether all Northern parties would get disinvited or just Sinn Fein.

Ironically, there is the tantalising prospect - first mooted by Ireland Today a week ago - that the brave family of Robert McCartney may be welcomed in the White House instead.

Those Irish American squeaky wheels have become wholly owned subsidiaries of Sinn Fein over the years, so it should be interesting to watch their reaction. We spoke to some of the squeakiest wheels yesterday about the prospect of the McCartneys' trip to America. First was no doubt heartfelt sympathy. But beneath the surface?

“I think some Irish Americans have a romantic view of the IRA that doesn't fit with the reality,” Catherine McCartney told the Belfast Telegraph this week. “We’re there to tell them what’s really gone on.”

When presented with this attitude from the McCartney women, Father Sean McManus of the Irish National Caucus was particularly scathing:

"If the purpose is to launch a campaign in America against not only the IRA but Sinn Fein, than that campaign is profoundly misguided because it’s going to distract from the issue, and further it’s not going to succeed,” said Fr McManus.

“Despite all the stuff that’s been going on – Gerry Adams is held in huge regard in this country by members of Congress both Democrat and Republican and across the board. The only parallel historically is when Dev came here in 1918.”

“There is huge regard for Gerry Adams – and there are some elements in the media, and the extremist justice minister [Michael] McDowell, who don’t want to hear that – if this is another attempt to denigrate Sinn Fein, it’s wrong and it will not work,” he added.

Sympathy for the family of innocent fathers from the Irish communities some of these so-called leaders of Irish America claim to fight for lasts just as long as it fits the Sinn Fein line.

We wish that these relics were simply consigned to the dustbin of history and rightly ignored. But sadly, they're still taken seriously by some. Including the Irish government, which granted an umbrella coalition of these groups an audience with its Ambassador to the US last week. One suspects that with some Congressional Sinn Fein fellow travellers to keep happy, the Bush Administration tried to give as much leeway as possible.

One hopes that now the debate is over, Washington will give the McCartney family a platform as a welcome antitode to the poisonous bilge of recent Sinn Fein PR.

******************

Irish National Caucus.
Press Release
Friday, March 4, 2005

Father Mc Manus Responds to Blogger Delevan's Distortions
Was Not "Scathing" Towards McCartneys

On Wednesday, March 2, 2005, a Richard Delevan telephoned from Dublin and left a message on the voice-mail of the Irish National Caucus, saying he was writing for The Evening Herald in Dublin, and that he wanted to talk to me about the proposed visit of the McCartney sisters to Washington. I called him back.

He told me that he wanted to speak to me " as I was a long-time respected leader in the Irish-American community". That set off a little alarm bell in my mind, which I stilled just in case the man was being gracious.

I told him there was deep and profound sympathy among Irish-Americans for the McCartney family, and absolute revulsion at the savage murder of poor Robert and I described the murder as " one of the very worst of all the many murders".

I then told him I was very sensitive to the call of one of Robert's sisters that their dead brother not be treated as" a political football". And I kept stressing that Irish-Americans wanted justice for the McCartney family. Mr. Delevan, however, kept pushing to know what repercussions the McCartney U.S. visit would have on Sinn Fein and I kept insisting the issue was justice for the McCartney family.

He then said he was not the one who was claiming that the McCartney visit would affect Sinn Fein, but that one of the sisters had declared that they were going to America to straighten out Irish-Americans about the real nature of Sinn Fein. My response was as follows: If the objective is to get justice for the McCartney family, then all decent Irish-Americans will support it. In my opinion, however, it would be a great disservice to Robert's cause if the campaign were turned into yet another campaign to hurt Sinn FeinŠ that it would be a great mistake, and that, as a matter of fact, it would not work that Gerry Adams had the trust of Irish-Americans and was hugely respected".

Ironically, when we were finished I asked, "Have you got what you wanted?" Mr. Delevan replied he had and thanked me for very frankly and directly answering his questions.

Mr. Delevan would later write up his report ( http://richarddelevan.blogspot.com).
I had not realized he was a Blogger, as he had not told me. He did, however tell me that because The Evening Herald was not up on the Web he could not email me a copy of the article but that he would mail me a hard copy of his article as it appeared in The Evening Herald).

In his Blog-report, Mr. Delevan said I was " particularly scathing" towards the McCartney family.

How in God's name could he possibly say that? For over 30 years I have often been attacked in the media for speaking up for justice and peace in Ireland (that, of course, goes with the territory). But I've rarely been falsely reported or misrepresented by a professional journalist, -- even by the most hostile.

Mr. Delevan falsely reported and falsely distorted my position, which is one of total and profound sympathy for the McCartney family and a deep desire to see justice for Robert. He as done exactly what one of Robert's sister begged not to be done. He has used poor Robert as " a political football". God forgive him for that.

Father Sean Mc Manus
President
Irish National Caucus
P.O. Box 15128
Capitol Hill
Washington, D.C. 20003-0849
202-544-0568
E-mail sean@irishnationalcaucus.org
Web irishnationalcaucus.org

******************************

25 Comments:

At 3:35 PM, March 07, 2005, Anonymous Pat Flannery said...

In a recent press release you say: "Only the Irish Government can now rescue the fading peace-process. It is now time for the Irish Government to put pressure on the British ... and to call off its attack dog, Minister of Justice Michael Mc Dowell. The peace process must not be sacrificed for petty political reasons"

I have two questions for you:

(1) What exactly should the Irish Government do to rescue the peace process? Should they stop harrassing the IRA? Is that what you mean?

(2) Do you receive any payment from the IRA for echoing their line here in the US?

Pat Flannery
San Diego

 
At 5:54 PM, March 07, 2005, Anonymous Roger W. Christ said...

Mr. McManus, what are you doing interfering in the affairs of my country ?

If I set up an organization dedicated to political reform in the USA and ran it entirely from Ireland would I have your full support ?

 
At 10:53 PM, March 07, 2005, Anonymous Pat Kempton said...

The first thing the Irish government can do is stop being a "yes" man to the British government. If Bertie had shown a little backbone and objected when Blair cancelled the elections, when he set up the "Independent" Monitoring Commission and when he sided with the DUP at Christmas, the peace process would be in much better shape.

Incidentally, any Irish-American or any American who cares about human rights has an obligation to be involved in the affairs of British-occupied Ireland.

 
At 3:55 AM, March 08, 2005, Anonymous aquifer said...

What is the problem that Catholic Irish America has with Northern Ireland. Do they want to vicariously re-live an American Style war of independence, having arrived too late for the first one? Is it the Presbyterian farmers, the last in a long line of Christian sects and schismatics to have lived in Ireland? It can't be the land they got, for given the timeframe, the Americans should then be working for their native americans.
Or are they exporting their nineteenth century urban american argument, the one against the protestant and anglican establishment.
The Provisional IRA chose violence when other options were open.
Were those other options too black?

 
At 5:51 AM, March 08, 2005, Blogger Christopher Stalford said...

Congratulations on establishing your blog. I hope to visit regularly.

You stae in your introduction that the McBride principles were aimed at ending anti-Catholic discrimination. That was in 1984, fast-forward to 2005.

What is your position regarding anti-Protestant discrimination, particularly legislation which prevents people from fulfilling their career aspirations on the basis of their religion, namely 50-50 recruitment for the PSNI? Will you condemn this discrimination?

 
At 7:31 AM, March 08, 2005, Blogger Randolph "Healy" Cecil said...

Congratulations on setting up this site! Perhaps some of the pro Collusion writers can learn a little something about what happens to the Irish in the 6 counties. This might even lead to them working for real democracy instead of a paper one.

 
At 10:28 AM, March 08, 2005, Anonymous Donncha Macaodha said...

It is apparent from the comments on Fr. mcManus that the old tribes are still at it and always will be I am tired of playing this game I am a Roman Catholic and while I do not wish to discriminate against prods I do not intend to let them discriminate against me or my fellow catholics any longer and by whatever means are nessesary we will unite Eire and make the 32 counties a nation once again where everyone yes even the protestants can live in peace

 
At 11:14 AM, March 08, 2005, Anonymous Jay said...

In response to roger w. christ:

roger, if it is your country, then fix it!

I can't answer for Father McManus, but I personally would be willing to join any organization dedicated to reform of the US without regard to its country of origin. (assuming I thought they could do some good).


Jay

 
At 1:12 AM, March 09, 2005, Blogger R. Delevan said...

Man, it's like a whole can of mixed nuts in here. Donncha "by whatever means are nessesary we will unite Eire"? Christ, even the 32-County Sovereignty Committee doesn't think that.
So much for democracy. Because if you think the voters of the Republic would approve a merger in the forseeable future, you've got another thing coming.

By the way, Padre. You accused me of misrepresenting myself, and offer no proof. Here is the proof that your accusation is false. I'm still waiting for your retraction. And apology.

Or does 'thou shalt not bear false witness' not appear in your Bible, priest?

 
At 10:12 AM, March 09, 2005, Anonymous Peter Nolan said...

Father McManus,

You still haven't answered my question posed in my recent email to you. Why, as an American, do you think its justifiable to act on behalf of Sinn Fein and Gerry Adams given their ongoing partnership with FARC and Fidel Castro, as well as taking guns from the Soviet Union, Col Gaddafy (after the 1986 US bombing of Tripoli) , extensive collaboration with the PLO in its anti-American period before its renunciation of terrorism and even meeting with the Lebanese Hezbollah group who killed hundreds of Marines in Tehran?

I'm extremely angry at your malign involvement in Irish politics, but your associating with America's terrorist enemies needs justification beyond what Randolph's Castro-loving website has to offer.

 
At 8:40 PM, March 09, 2005, Anonymous Pat Flannery said...

Dear “Father” McManus,

As a blogger dedicated to honesty and factual information in blogging, I have posted on my web site (http://patflannery.com/McDowellStatement.htm) the entire Statement issued by Ireland’s Justice Minister Michael McDowell on Thursday, 13 January 2005, with which you seem to have taken exception and following which you seem to have joined others in calling the Irish Minister “The Mad Mullah”, a pejorative term usually associated with the supreme leader of Afghanistan's ruling Taliban, Mullah Mohammed Omar.

I would like you to:

(1) confirm that you had read Mr. McDowell’s complete statement before you launched your attack on him, in other words that you were not just echoing the Sinn Fein/IRA line, and

(2) tell me and your American readers exactly where in his statement you consider him to be in factual error.

He is the senior law enforcement officer of the democratically elected Irish Government and an attack on him is an attack on that Government. He seems to be addressing an urgent law enforcement matter that has arisen in Ireland, a matter that has implications for the rule of law in every democracy.

I thank you in advance for your considered reply.

Pat Flannery
San Diego

 
At 3:05 AM, March 10, 2005, Anonymous Peter Nolan said...

Welcome to the internet age, Sean. Your silence itself speaks volumes of your ignorance and intolerance.

 
At 8:30 AM, March 10, 2005, Anonymous Peter Nolan said...

By the way, the blue shirts means Fine Gael, not the former FF'ers who make up the Progressive Democrats. Learn some basic political facts.

 
At 10:53 PM, March 11, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Irish/American....totally confused.

What gets me about this whole thing is that if you loose a loved one you for some reason hide behind the cloth and think you can pick up the fight?

Why and to what end?

The truth of the matter is that no one really cares and corporate world will continue without even noticing that you were ever here. Why? Because that is reality. Governments come and go as do religions. The only sanity in it all is to live life divorced from the pissing littl argument of the rest of the world.

A monk tho shouldst have been!

 
At 2:47 AM, March 14, 2005, Blogger R. Delevan said...

Still waiting for your retraction.

 
At 4:39 AM, March 15, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Father Sean, As a life long Sinn Fein and proud Republican I cannot believe some of the comments posted here. How can any true Republican justify the butchering of a fellow Catholic and Sinn Fein voter especially a Catholic Priest !

Happy Paddys Day !

 
At 4:40 AM, March 15, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Father Sean, As a life long Sinn Fein and proud Republican I cannot believe some of the comments posted here. How can any true Republican justify the butchering of a fellow Catholic and Sinn Fein voter especially a Catholic Priest !

Happy Paddys Day !

 
At 1:58 PM, March 15, 2005, Anonymous Peter Nolan said...

"How can any true Republican justify the butchering of a fellow Catholic and Sinn Fein voter especially a Catholic Priest!"

I see that I'm not the only one tagging you as a Sinn Fein and IRA mouthpiece.

 
At 7:06 AM, March 28, 2005, Anonymous Peter Began said...

Fr,McManus claims the majority of irish/Americans support Adams and McGuinness Sinn Fein/IRA.

Have any irish/Americans taken into account every time they give money to Adams or McGuinness they are supporting terrorists murder's.

By financing terrorists then you are equally responsible for any atrocities carried out by them.

Have any irish/Americans seen their friends and family murdered with guns from America bought with their money???

 
At 7:40 AM, March 28, 2005, Anonymous Peter Began said...

Father McManus.

Im sure you are aware a number of Catholic Priests were directly involved in the IRA???

Priests collecting money,gun and explosive running.
A Priest alledged to be part of an IRA active service unit on a bombing mission killing many innocent people????

These Priests had taken the same oath as Fr,McManus,they too would have said they represented a nonviolent organisation.

 
At 1:16 PM, March 28, 2005, Anonymous Belfast said...

fr,McManus uses fine words like sympathy and justice when refering to the McCartney family and the murder of their brother.
However not once have I heard him say,these IRA murderers should give themselves up to the proper authorities to be charges with murder.This is what the McCartney family wants,not empty words from fr,McManus

 
At 1:17 PM, March 28, 2005, Anonymous Belfast said...

fr,McManus uses fine words like sympathy and justice when refering to the McCartney family and the murder of their brother.
However not once have I heard him say,these IRA murderers should give themselves up to the proper authorities to be charges with murder.This is what the McCartney family wants,not empty words from fr,McManus

 
At 1:21 PM, March 31, 2005, Anonymous Irishman said...

Fr,McManus,

You are the biggest obstacle to peace in Ireland,with your twisted republican ideals.Everything you say is distorted to further the sinn fein/ira cause and excuse their atrocities.

There is no serious religion in your blood,just hatred for all other religions and the protestant people.

Why has ten's of thousands of Catholic's moved north into the British terrority of Derry's Cregan and Bogside Estates and other border areas since 1960 if they are so afraid ????????

Many Catholic's did join the RUC and other branches of the Security Forces.However most were prevented from making it their career as a direct result of intimidation or even murder by sinn fein/ira.

Fr McManus get your facts straight !!!

 
At 5:03 PM, April 28, 2005, Blogger isaacsplace said...

Fr,Sean,
Why have you not a church like any normal Catholic Priest ????
Would this job be to honest for you ???

It is obvious from your various comments that you promoted yourself as president of the Irish National Caucus in order to incite hatred between the Catholic and Protestant people in Ireland.

Furthermore you use this fake position to transmit your own twisted republician ideals to some law abiding Irish/American's who in turn will give dollars to Sinn Fein/IRA.

Sean,have you ever informed those people who give money to any terrorist group that they are responsible for their actions!!!

 
At 5:04 PM, April 28, 2005, Blogger isaacsplace said...

Fr,Sean,
Why have you not a church like any normal Catholic Priest ????
Would this job be to honest for you ???

It is obvious from your various comments that you promoted yourself as president of the Irish National Caucus in order to incite hatred between the Catholic and Protestant people in Ireland.

Furthermore you use this fake position to transmit your own twisted republician ideals to some law abiding Irish/American's who in turn will give dollars to Sinn Fein/IRA.

Sean,have you ever informed those people who give money to any terrorist group that they are responsible for their actions!!!

 

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