[Marxism] Martina Anderson on Policing

D OC donaloc at hotmail.com
Wed Feb 7 12:55:09 MST 2007

Those from overseas will gain insights from this I think. Martina was lifted 
several times for IRA activities, she is now a SF leader.

Martina Anderson

Today is a watershed in the history of our struggle. There has been a 
historic consultation process and political leadership of the people. 
Previous decisions have been taken by the Army - cessations, putting arms 
beyond use, but today's decision is the culmination of a process of a wide, 
an unprecedented consultation with activists, the party, the families of our 
patriot dead, and with the community which has born the brunt of the 
struggle down the years. We are no longer a struggle waged by a small band 
of brave and courageous people on behalf of the nation. Today we are taking 
decisions in consultation with the people.

The British has occupied Ireland in a manner best described by James 
Connolly - to paraphrase, she keeps us quarrelling with each other whilst 
she robs and murders us all. Whilst neighbour-fears-neighbour, striking out 
against 'the other', we remain divided and without power to take charge of 
our own destinies. In those circumstances, we cannot hope to build an 
Ireland of equals, an inclusive Ireland, a democratic Socialist republic. 
This resolution is about empowerment of the people, all the people. It is a 
precondition to take our struggle forward; it is a programme to do so.

Of course nothing will be achieved by the passing a resolution alone, whilst 
it is a declaration of intent to build justice in our country. Policing will 
be only as accountable to the community, as we, the people, make it. This 
resolution is a programme for all those who seek justice, and equality in 
our community. We need to take them on, make policing answerable and bring 
the arrogance of power to book.

Comrades, we have taken them on before, and we continue to do so - with the 
same fearless confidence. Cohesion is not about a head count of those who 
support a resolution, on paper, it is about how we go forward to make that 
resolution real, to work together to empower all the people, and bring down 
the arrogance of power, and end the humiliation of unaccountable policing, 
to bring to an end the practice of sectarianism, upon which British rule has 
been based. On that programme we will all go forward, tomorrow, together, as 
one risen, emboldened people, empowered by the courage, resilience and 
determination of a few.

If the lessons of Bloody Sunday thought us anything it is that we must hold 
those in power to account. And as I leave this stage to go to Derry to speak 
at the Bloody Sunday Commemoration - urge you - not just to pass this 
resolution overwhelmingly, but also to get behind its intent and remove 
another pillar of the corrupt state from enemy hands.

After all, if war us the continuation of politics, then comrades, this is 
the reverse. I urge you to support the motion. If you cannot vote for it 
then abstain.

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