With Maggie Thatcher's death Monday, thoughts of many in the Irish community turn to her role in the deaths of the 10 hunger strikers in 1981. John McDonagh, co-host of WBAI's weekly show Radio Free Eireann, revealed to The New York Times yesterday that he would be organizing a 'celebration' of Thatcher's passing on Saturday, at Rocky Sullivan's, prominent Irish pub in Brooklyn. He's not the only one -- parties are on the boards in Derry and Belfast as well, according to The Guardian.

Left, Margaret Thatcher / PA Photo

In the interview, McDonagh called Thatcher an enemy to Irish people “because of the destruction she brought to Ireland with her policies — she always thought of Ireland as a colony and never a country.”

Arguably, McDonagh's response might represent one extreme, with the long list of Tory mourners at her memorial service representing the other, with a wide range of views between them.

Meanwhile, we have assembled some info to bring to bear on the discussion, including a reminiscence of the Summer of the Hunger Strikes by Black 47 front ... and a ballad about hunger striker Francis Hughes.

What's your take?

Tags: Hunger Strikes, Larry Kirwan, Thatcher

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IRISH WAKE FOR THATCHER

 
Celebrate the end of the life of Margaret Thatcher with an Irish Wake at ROCKY SULLIVAN’S, ON Saturday, April 13th, from 3 – 6 p.m.
Join Radio Free Eireann’s John McDonagh, musician and publican Chris Byrne, Fr. Pat Maloney, New York’s next mayor Randy Credico and many others as Thatcher’s many atrocities are recalled in the writings of Bobby Sands, a reading of the names of the Argentinean sailors who died on the ship Belgrano, and a special statement from Peggy O’Hara, mother of hungerstriker Patsy O’Hara. There will be plenty of live music and poetry, and a collection of world renown artist Brian Mor’s Thatcher cartoons will be displayed
--
Sandy Boyer 

Friends of Irish Freedom had a good way of putting things into perspective. They said:

We encourage Republican-minded people to celebrate the lives of the 1981 Hunger Strikers rather than "celebrate" the death of Thatcher

They went on to say:

It will be more fruitful to educate and remind people of the bravery & sacrifices of the ten young Irishmen. Remind people that Ireland is still not free of British oppression in 2013.

Honour them by taking the high road

Honour them by supporting Republican Prisoners in jail today

 

If I may, lecturing on this site is inappropriate...



Irish Homeland Photography said:

Appalling.  Anyone is free to disagree with her (or ANY politicians for that matter), and even to dislike her on a personal level, but to throw parties and to speak so hatefully of another human being who had different beliefs than others is just so far out-of-bounds.  I just think when we sink to these depths, we've really lost grip with basic decency.

And you're lecturing me about not lecturing, Séamus.

Oh, the irony.


Séamus Ó Dubsláine said:

If I may, lecturing on this site is inappropriate...



Irish Homeland Photography said:

Appalling.  Anyone is free to disagree with her (or ANY politicians for that matter), and even to dislike her on a personal level, but to throw parties and to speak so hatefully of another human being who had different beliefs than others is just so far out-of-bounds.  I just think when we sink to these depths, we've really lost grip with basic decency.

Except in my case ....

Irish Homeland Photography said:

And you're lecturing me about not lecturing, Séamus.

Oh, the irony.


Séamus Ó Dubsláine said:

If I may, lecturing on this site is inappropriate...



Irish Homeland Photography said:

Appalling.  Anyone is free to disagree with her (or ANY politicians for that matter), and even to dislike her on a personal level, but to throw parties and to speak so hatefully of another human being who had different beliefs than others is just so far out-of-bounds.  I just think when we sink to these depths, we've really lost grip with basic decency.

LOL...now now mo chairde...everyone is entitled to their views and opinions....  ;-)

Yes, we can have sharp disagreements on issues and personalities, but still respect each other, human frailties and foibles and all. I always say, and try to remember, hate the sin but not the sinner.

Seamus, what's the take-way from this article, for you, then?

My "take away" from Andrew O'Hagan's essay is that he is an exceptionally adroit author possessing an uncanny understanding of the political ether of his time and of the history of Britain... And that Margaret Thatcher was, indeed, the wrong person in the wrong position at the wrong time. That is my opinion.

Séamus

Séamus, how would you assess the Irish government's relationship with her and her cabinet then? Could it have mitigated the consequences of her policies for the Irish people, in your view?

Like O'Hagan shared, Thatcher hated the Irish people - and probably the Scots as well... And she was opposed to the Good Friday Agreement. O'Hagan has her pegged! Personally, I believe Thatcher was channeling Oliver Cromwell all the while...

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