The political history of the Phoenix Park in Dublin. While the park hosts many of the symbols of power in Ireland - past and present - from the monument to the arch-reactionary Wellington, to the US-ambassador's residence and the Garda Headquarters, it has also seen its fair share of opposition.
Part of a debate on the Russian revolution from 1994. The revolution was one of the most important events of the 20th century until the 1990's the most important debate on the left was whether or not it had failed. Now with the collapse of the USSR a far more important debate is uncovered, why did it fail.
We have been insisting on the need for the far left to re-appraise the tradition of the Russian revolution and in particular the role the Bolsheviks played in destroying that revolution. One of the most detailed responses to the anarchists critique of Bolshevism was published in the winter issue of International Socialism the journal of the Socialist Workers Party (the largest Leninist group in England).
The traditional history of the 1803 rising is of little more than a 'blood sacrifice' intended to confirm Ireland's right to independence. Ruan O'Donnell's book concentrates on exploding the myth that the rising was doomed from the start. It was planned not as a noble gesture of a handful of nationalists but rather as a mass uprising intended to decapitate the British state in Ireland at the very moment of a French invasion and liberation of the country.
The Easter 1916 rising in Dublin is often portrayed simply as nationalist blood sacrifice but it can also be examined as an insurrection which was seriously planned to defeat the British army. It is credited with transforming political attitudes in Ireland, leading to the partally successful war of independance but nationalist histories tend to understate the other reasons why the situation was transformed and to completely ignore the wave of workers struggles that broke out during the war.