On the 153rd Anniversary Representatives from the Gaughan Stagg Cumann (32CSM), Basque Separatist Movement and 161Crew Manchester came together to commemorate, the Manchester Martyrs William Philip Allen, Michael Larkin, and Michael O’Brien. All three men were hanged by the British state, on November 23, 1867 for the execution of a Brett, a police officer in Manchester.
Allen, Larkin, and O’Brien, were sentenced to death by hanging and cried “God save Ireland” from the dock. Two other men Maguire and O’Meagher Conlon, who had been sentenced to hang were let off almost instantly, leaving the three to be executed.
There was no evidence that any of the men shot Brett, only that they had been present.
The men were members of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, a revolutionary organisation dedicated to ending British rule in Ireland.
It is right and fitting that these innocent men are remembered. They were selected and executed on the basis of their political beliefs and race.
The passage of 153 years hasn’t brought justice and peace in Ireland. The occupied six counties serves to remind us, that British imperialism remains at the core of the British establishment.
The ongoing denial of Irish National Sovereignty by the British state, is maintained by the illegal presence of the British Army.
Our comrades from the Basque Separatist movement face the ongoing denial of Basque National Sovereignty. The Spanish Government use violence and oppression in a weak and pathetic attempt to criminalise the Basque Liberation struggle, and to legitimise their occupation of the Basque Country.
The instruments of imperialism are the same where ever it is pursued, oppression, criminalisation of political dissent, normalisation of occupation, state murders, increased hardship and poverty that targets working class communities.
Tragically the Basque and the Irish people face this every day. Equally they resist and seek to dismantle those structures by empowering grass root working class communities.
Imperialism does not and can not liberate the working class. It advances to oppress, murder and disempower working class communities, and pit them against each, whilst the so called elite profiteers.
We the people, the working class must join together to smash imperialism, it’s agents and structures.
Never Forget, Never Forgive, Never Again.