July 1981

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Uncovering the Truth About the 1981 Hunger Strike

Irish News letters page: The men behind the wire grow all the more noble as time reveals its truth

The men behind the wire grow all the more noble as time reveals its truth
Irish News letters page
Carrie Twomey
29/09/09

Manus McDaid claims in his most recent letter, entitled ‘(S)he who paid the piper’ (September 16), that he never heard of the claim that the last six hunger strikers could have been saved by a deal on offer from Thatcher – the same terms that the prisoners got at the end of the hunger strike – but instead were sacrificed for Sinn Fein’s gain.

Yet it was only June when he was expounding on the same topic – making similar misleading points about the ending of the first hunger strike – in a previous letter to The Irish News (‘Tread lightly on the dreams of heroes’, June 13).

Perhaps Manus suffers from goldfish syndrome.

This would entail swallowing whole whatever crumbs are being served, then promptly forgetting their content, a memory sustained only, if at all, until the next line is fed.

The first hunger strike ended not because of British duplicity but because of the humanity of the late Brendan Hughes.

The second hunger strike continued far longer than it needed because of the inhumanity of those managing it on the outside, to whom the hunger strikers were merely more cannon fodder for their ambitions.

This heartbreaking fact does not in any way whatsoever impinge on the integrity of the hunger strikers.

In fact, it makes them all the more noble as they had little idea of the manner in which they were being abused by their own – and remained committed to their beliefs to the end.

The same cannot be said and will no longer ever be believed about those who led them.

Sourced from the Irish News

Category: 2009, Irish News, Letters, Media

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