The Blanket

The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent
In The Name of Security

Jim J Kane • September 3, 2003

The Statue of Liberty, symbol of freedom: "Liberty Enlightening the World", as it is officially titled.

Give me your tired, your poor, you huddled masses yearning to breath free. The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these the homeless, tempest-tossed to me: I lift my lamp beside the golden door.

The words sound so sincere offering shelter to the oppressed and those who wish to breath free, yet I wonder how loud and what meaning they have for Ciarán Ferry, who now sits in a maximum security prison in Denver or Malachy McAllister and family, who I have come to know and help while attending his extradition hearing in the federal courthouse in New Jersey, do these words sing true for him and his family?

John McNicholl, who has lived and worked here in Pennsylvania as a pipe fitter and was selected as Derry Society's man in 2001, what do those words mean to him and his family? His wife Frankie, as she is affectionately called, is a naturalized citizen of the United States, their children are citizens and yet John, in the early morning hours as he left his home for work. was set upon by agents hidden outside of his home and placed in a vehicle, ripped away from his family and deported.

These families are not terrorists nor would they contemplate any aggressive action towards their adopted home, The United States.

It has been recently that actions taken against these persons and others stems from the Iraq war. When President Bush invaded Iraq with the British forces as allies, it appears Mr. Bush is "paying back" favors for their assistance in siding with the US invasion of Iraq; these "favors" at a cost of human suffering upon these families being torn apart.

One can only contemplate the larger strategy that is yet to be played out between these two politicians, yet while they play their political games, families are torn apart, men deported, children left fatherless regardless of the signing of The Good Friday Agreement, regardless of the cease fire, and regardless of the release of all political prisoners and political parties who signed said agreement.

Why now after all these years, after the families have lived and worked here, contributed to the community and to our country, do we confine them to prison, tear families apart and finally deport them?

One can only look at our governments actions and motives and wonder why. As an Irish American I feel shame and embarrassment at the actions our government has taken in the name of security.

Does not The Statue Of Liberty still proclaim "Give us your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breath free", or has the government turned a deaf ear and blind eye to those who seek freedom from oppression and wish to live free. Can a foreign government dictate and wield so much power that we would imprison and deport men and families even after the siging of The Good Friday Agreement? Is this how American thanks Britian for being our ally during the invasion of iraq?

Today the Irish, who will be sacrificed tomorrow in the name of security?

















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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent



All censorships exist to prevent any one from challenging current conceptions and existing institutions. All progress is initiated by challenging current conceptions, and executed by supplanting existing institutions. Consequently the first condition of progress is the removal of censorships.
- George Bernard Shaw

Index: Current Articles

4 September 2003


Other Articles From This Issue:


US Denies It Gave Safe Harbor to Brian Nelson
Fr Sean Mc Manus


Between Theory and Reality
Eamon Sweeney


In the Name of Security
Jim J Kane


Caught at it Again
Anthony McIntyre


The History of the Troubles According to the Provos
John Nixon


Moving Forward Past the Past
Davy Carlin


More Questions than Answers
Mick Hall


In Memory of Robert Emmet

Charles Murnick


Attempted Suicide by Iranian Asylum Seeker
Debbie Grue


Dublin: Maghberry Briefing Meeting
Mags Glennon


Belfast Anti-War Movement
Public Meeting


1 September 2003


Latest Police Attacks on Press Freedoms
Mike Browne


We Haven't Gone Away, You Know
The Blanket Back Online


The War Crime of Secret Graves
Anthony McIntyre


Horses for Courses
Eamon Sweeney


Rwanda: Crushing Dissent
Liam O Ruairc


Terrorists, Their Friends and the Bogota 3
Toni Solo


Aznar: Spain's Super Lackey
Agustín Velloso


Orwell Centenary Talk

John O'Farrell


The Letters page has been updated.




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