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General Liam Lynch 100th Anniversary

32CSM members layed a wreath this evening at the grave of General Liam Lynch, Chief-of-Staff Irish Republican Army on the eve of his 100th anniversary.

Born into a humble home at the foot of the Galtee Mountains in early November 1893 Liam Lynch was to become one of the most influential Republican leaders of his time. Lynch was a determined, clever and diligent boy whose humble upbringing instilled in him a deep sense of the struggles which defined his nationality. The fireside tales of enduring hardships by previous generations of his family to survive occupation, repression and unimaginable cruelties to attain not only the very land they now worked and lived on, but the continued struggle to attain personal autonomy did not go unheeded by the young Liam Lynch.

Once finished school Liam left home and began an apprenticeship in Mitchelstown where he eventually joined the Mitchelstown Volunteer Company in 1914. The following year Lynch changed employment and moved to the then garrison town of Fermoy. It was this move that provided the 22 year old with a very personal encounter of British injustice as he stood on Fermoy Bridge and watched the well known and active IRA Volunteer Thomas Kent after his arrest by British troops. This action was to be the catalyst for Liam’s allegiance to an armed struggle without falter for a Free, Democratic, 32 County Irish Republic.

Lynch remained steadfast to the end, stating in a letter to his comrades in February 1923, two months before his death, “the war will go on until the independence of our country is recognised by our enemies, foreign and domestic”.

Although, lost to us 100 years ago Lynch's ideals and his unwavering principals are a beacon of hope and inspiration. What would Liam Lynch think of the Ireland of today; partitioned, politically abandoned and on a whole in dire need of the fundamental Republican ideals of the men and women of 1916. We have seen time and again our country in turmoil, brother against brother, republican divides, armed struggle, partition, the formation of the Free state, internment, hunger strikes, political wins and losses, injustices served to Republicans for their political beliefs.

This past week alone we have seen so called political leaders celebrate the ‘success’ of the Good Friday agreement, an agreement which further copper fastened English rule in our country by its very nature. In contrast to their celebrations of success we see a country still partitioned and unable to determine its own destiny.

While we pay our respects to fallen comrades at graveyards all over the 32 counties of Ireland this easter we must ask ourselves are Republicans today capable, willing and driven enough to continue to work toward the 32 County Independent Irish Republic envisioned by Liam Lynch and his comrades?. Republicans must step up and move forward, we must endeavour to do better. We must hand a legacy of endurance, strength and the willingness to adjust to the next generation if our generation fails in their goals.

Now is the time for action, for unity, for vision, for continued commitment. Now is the time to come together, to illuminate republican strength, to collaborate on positive political and revolutionary strategies which will enable Liam Lynch's vision of a Sovereign Ireland to become a reality.

Beir Bua

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