National Executive Committee, Communist Party of Ireland
16 March 2019
At its regular meeting on 16 March 2019 the National Executive Committee of the Communist Party of Ireland discussed the current situation in relation to the continuing debate about Brexit and also the decision of the Public Prosecution Service in regard to the prosecution of members of the British military in connection with the events of Bloody Sunday in Derry in 1972 and the murder by the British state military of fourteen innocent Irish citizens taking part in an anti-internment march.
In the decision of the Prosecution Service that only one out of sixteen British soldiers will face prosecution for their involvement in the events of that day, the British state has concurred in the assertion that the bodies of fourteen civilians are insufficient evidence for prosecuting all those involved. The only soldier who may face charges will have the full financial and legal support of the British state.
The only prosecutions considered were those of individual soldiers, never of their commanding officers, nor of the politicians responsible. While an individual soldier may be sacrificed, the real decision-makers—the British state, politicians, and military command—will remain untouched and untouchable.
It is against this background that working people need to understand the comments made on 6 March in the British parliament by the Secretary of State, Karen Bradley,* not as the comments of an ill-informed or ignorant British Tory politician but rather as a very clear political message of support to the British military establishment: that their service in protecting the interests of imperialism will go unchallenged.
The campaign of the families of the victims in both the Derry and the Ballymurphy mass murders to expose the lies and cover-ups must be applauded, and acceptance that their family members, friends and neighbours were murdered as part of a deliberately organised and directed policy by the British state. Their persistent and unwavering campaign, which has gone on for forty-seven years and continues today, must be supported.
The crisis within the ruling class deepens. The continuing struggle within the British establishment and state regarding Brexit and the extent of the relationship or separation between Britain and the European Union continue to expose the deep fissures within the British ruling class and within British social democracy.
This crisis within the European Union has also exposed the subservient relationship of the Irish ruling class towards the EU. The Irish establishment are being increasingly exposed as vassals of the EU, and have allowed the Irish national democratic question to be used as a foil by all sides, both pro and anti-Brexit forces within Britain, and by the EU.
Neither side in this struggle cares for the working class of Ireland: they are simply using the imposed British border in Ireland as a means to an end, to secure their own interests.
The CPI continues to assert its long-held position that the only lasting solution is to end partition and to end the domination of both British and EU imperialism. What is becoming clearer is that many business and farming interests, particularly from a unionist political background, as well as business interests throughout the whole country, now see the all-Ireland economy as being in their own material interests.
The CPI reasserts its view that it is opposed to any border across our country, or the use of divisions among our people, as a blocking mechanism, and that any boundary between the British state and the European Union should be at the borders of Britain itself.
The CPI calls for the unity of all those forces that oppose imperialist domination and calls on them to work together to build the forces necessary to take advantage of the crisis within the British ruling class and a bankrupt Irish establishment to push forward the demand for ending division and partition, to articulate the possibilities of what a new Ireland would hold for the working class of Ireland.
*She stated that the killings by the police and the British military “were not crimes. They were people acting under orders and under instruction and fulfilling their duty in a dignified and appropriate way.”