On this the 104th anniversary of the Easter Rising of 1916, Saoradh re-dedicate ourselves to the Irish Republic as proclaimed on the steps of Dublin on Easter Monday of that year. We extend solidarity to our membership, support base and the Republican Prisoners and their families. Saoradh also send fraternal best wishes to all those fighting to overthrow capitalist, colonial, imperialist and occupation regimes, and all those imprisoned for doing so.
This anniversary occurs in the midst of unprecedented circumstances nationally and globally due to the coronavirus. Our priority at this time is to ensure we do not exacerbate this crisis by organising mass gatherings contrary to international health standards. Therefore Saoradh took the responsible decision to cancel our National, regional and local commemorative events.
This crisis has far reaching and heartbreaking consequences across the globe. Here in Ireland most of us will be directly or indirectly affected at some stage, if we have not been already. Our comradeship and community based activism will become ever more important in the time ahead. Especially when the tide of illness abates and those within the capitalist and privileged classes who have sought to profit from this misery are to be held accountable by Republicans and Socialists such as ourselves.
In the last year Saoradh has sought to embed ourselves within communities via radical action that seeks to empower the working class. This has undoubtedly been evident more so in certain areas, while in others we are sowing seeds that will grow in the short, medium and long term.
Internal discussions and debates have sought to educate and inform our members according to a specific ideological position that has been formed by consensus. This is an ongoing process that will benefit our membership and those we fight on behalf of. Our growth is identifiable, with a steady and significant increase in membership across the entire year, including the establishment of a craobh outside Ireland for the first time.
At the same time the enemies of Republicanism have been attempting to consolidate their own positions. The British Army remains in Occupied Ireland in their thousands, assisted by hundreds of MI5 operatives. Thousands of armed Crown Force militia patrol our streets. All of this is fully supported by the dysfunctional and long-standing failed political experiments at Stormont and Leinster House, presided over by the most ideologically right-wing British Government since partition.
Therefore it is incumbent upon Saoradh, and the wider Republican Movement, to embrace the societal changes that will undoubtedly flow from the global health crisis we now find ourselves in. It isnt enough for capitalism to refer to people as “essential workers”, instead of their previous description of “low skilled workers”. Workers need to be organised collectively to ensure that Irish society is transformed in the way that Connolly dreamed.
The only way this emancipation of the working class can be achieved is via freedom, national self-determination and the Republic. Nothing less.
Connolly and those who fought to try and achieve our freedom gave everything, including their lives and liberties for the working class and we in Saoradh will give our utmost to carry on the flame. We will stand up for the oppressed, we will stand shoulder to shoulder with the working class, we will continue the fight against capitalism.
We again reiterate our commitment to bringing about and effecting positive change within our communities. We honour the past of our ancestors by taking up the mantel of those who went before us in the struggle for full freedom for our country. Freedom from exploitation, freedom from greed and privilege, freedom from Britain.
Where other false prophets have bent the knee and have been subsumed by the British and capitalism, Saoradh have come from those who will not bend and refused to be subsumed and together, we will see the rising of the moon.