Statement read at the Irish Republican Socialist Movement’s National
1916 Easter Rising Commemoration in Belfast
Comrades, at this Eastertime, the Irish Republican Socialist Committees of North America send solidarity greetings to our comrades and fellow members of the Irish Republican Socialist Movement in the Irish Republican Socialist Party, Irish National Liberation Army, Republican Socialist Youth Movement, and Teach na Failte. We are particularly mindful of our imprisoned comrades in Portlaoise Prison.
On this day, the 97th anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising, we remember with pride all those who have given their lives for an Irish Workers’ Republic. We pay homage to the brave volunteers and activists of the INLA and IRSP who made the ultimate sacrifice.
At this time, the IRSCNA would like to highlight the ongoing illegal interment of Irish Republicans: Marian Price, who has been held for over 680 days and is in deteriorating health; Martin Corey, who has been in custody for over 1,000 days without trial and without a reason given for his arrest; and Stephen Murney, who has been held since November on trumped up charges. Who knows who could be targeted next. This is the reality for Republicans 15 years after the signing of the Good Friday Agreement.
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Dublin Lock-out of 1913, when 20,000 workers were locked out by 300 employers over the issue of the right of workers to organize in unions. In the century that has since passed, the Irish working class is no closer to enjoying true freedom. As long as capitalism and British imperialism exist on the island of Ireland, the Irish working class shall be in chains. We in the IRSM, the true inheritors of the ideals of James Connolly, rightfully recognize that national liberation is not enough. We need to achieve class emancipation, both in Ireland and internationally.
As Connolly himself said: “If you remove the English army tomorrow and hoist the green flag over Dublin Castle, unless you set about the organization of the Socialist Republic your efforts would be in vain.
England would still rule you. She would rule you through her capitalists, through her landlords, through her financiers, through the whole array of commercial and individualist institutions she has planted in this country and watered with the tears of our mothers and the blood of our martyrs.”
As this Easter dawns, we stand in the proud tradition of generations of Irish revolutionaries, struggling to liberate the working class from the shackles of capitalism and imperialism.
Onward to victory, comrades! Our only allegiance is to the working class!