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Peter Hadden

Militant editor on Irish tour

(February 1984)

From Militant [UK], 24 February 1984.
Transcribed and marked up by Ciaran Crossey.

Last Wednesday, 15 February, a meeting took place between the officers of the Irish Labour Party and the Editorial Board of Militant Irish Monthly. The Editorial Board was given 24 hours’ notice of this meeting, and were not informed of its format or purpose.

At the meeting they were subjected to a detailed questioning about the finances and production of Militant. Making it dear that all the information asked for could have been provided in writing if it had been requested, and despite the lack of notice the Editorial Board answered all the questions asked.

Expulsion threat

At the end the real purpose of the meeting became clear, when the party leader – Dick Spring – spoke about the stopping of Militant and stated explicitly that what was being considered was the expulsion of Militant supporters from the Labour Party.

As in Britain it is an attempt by the right wing to stifle the ideas of Militant. The real reason is the growing opposition to the anti-working class policies of the Fine Gael dominated coalition.

Socialists in Ireland will have the opportunity to defend Militant by attending the meetings and rallies which will be addressed by Peter Taaffe, one of the five temporarily expelled from the British Labour Party, as well as a member of the Editorial Board of Militant.

In the North the ideas of Militant, for the unity of the working class and for a socialist solution, are gaining an ever-wider echo. In particular, the demand for a trade union-based Labour Party is beginning to take on flesh. At the rallies in Belfast and Derry these ideas will be fully explained.

Strengthen Marxism

Peter Taaffe’s tour will strengthen Marxism in Ireland. It can assist in weakening the hold of right wing coalition ideas. In the North it can be an answer to sectarianism and a boost to those struggling to build a political voice through the working class.

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