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This repost of the Saor Éire (Cork) publication People’s Voice brings a better copy of the edition to the Archive and many thanks to Jim Lane for that. There’s much to consider in the 12 page issue. It has a range of articles – one on TACA (which notes that ‘Jobbery is our game’), an outline of the position of workers under Franco, another on Nixon, a piece on ‘The Red Flag over Knocklong’ and another on the Derry Riots.
Perhaps most interesting is an Open Letter to Republicans. This is in response to an article in the November 1968 issue of the United Irishman entitled ‘The dilemma of Sinn Féin’.
Saor Éire argue that:
…regardless of our well known hostility towards the political course pursued by the movement over the past few years, we will be the first to admit that it certainly appears to have had the positive, and therefore welcome effect of shaking the movement out of the lethargy and political fantasy which had dogged it for so long.
And it continues that while the article in the UI saw the dilemma being that SF faced a ‘stronger radical movement made up of the Free State Labour Party in alliance with the Trade Unions’ it sees it differently.
In our view the [Labour Party is not a radical body], it never has been and it never will be. And in all fairness to that party, it has never claimed to be radical, in the sense that the term is clearly understood by revolutionaries.
And it continues that the real dilemma facing the Republican Movement is parliamentarianism.
REFORM OR REVOLUTION: THIS IS the question now facing Radical Republicans. The present Republican Movement, due to factors endowed by its organised life, and by the middle class ideology which originally instituted and shaped its structure, is incapable of reorientation to meet the requirements presently demanded of a radical movement. therefore for Republican radicals to continue to uphold the movement in the light of recent disclosures means in effect they opt for reformism and cease to be radicals.
And in conclusion it calls for the building of a ‘new movement, which by being radical in its objects, will also be the true inheritor of that revolutionary pattern of development that is the proud tradition of our people’.