The Broken Elbow Supports Niall O’Dowd hereby declares its support for Niall O’Dowd in his efforts to resist attempts to censor or close down his site, Irish Central, or parts of it, over an article alleging gross overpayment to the head of an Irish charity.

This site strongly believes in the First Amendment right of free publication of information judged to be in the public interest and it does so despite the fact that Mr O’Dowd has not only failed to support our campaign against the PSNI and US government’s attempts to subpoena the Boston College oral history archive but has attacked myself and the researchers for their involvement in that project.

The efforts to subpoena the archive will have a chilling effect on attempts by others to collect the truth about what happened during the Troubles in Northern Ireland, a consequence that the PSNI must have been aware of when they embarked on this course.

In effect the PSNI, along with their allies in the US and UK government were and are attempting to censor the free collection of truth and history concerning the Troubles in Northern Ireland and that is why this site expresses common cause with Niall O’Dowd.

We do not expect the owner of Irish Central to reciprocate and announce his conversion to our cause but what is happening to him may afford him the opportunity to reflect upon the reality that when the democratic rights of one party are threatened then the rights of all are put in peril, and when the rights of one party are defended then the rights of all are being safeguarded.

In such circumstances, the Pastor Niemoller doctrine demands the maximum solidarity and unity; when one outlet is menaced or silenced then all are threatened. Niall O’Dowd is learning that lesson right now, the hard way. A pity he hadn’t recognised this truth much earlier.

10 responses to “The Broken Elbow Supports Niall O’Dowd

  1. excellent post-not aware of what Niall O’Dowd is going through-but commend your solidarity for First Amendment rights-also I was perplexed why the recent New Yorker profile on Attorney General Eric Holder failed to make any mention of the Boston College Belfast Project subpoenas-and was clearly one of Holder’s failures.

  2. Reblogged this on Political Pip Spit or Swallow its up to You and commented:
    “When one outlet is menaced or silenced then all are threatened.”
    I couldn’t agree more…and wish Mr O’Dowd success in his efforts.

  3. It is unlikely that O’Dowd will begin to promote basic rights. As the MI5/Smurfit voice in the US he was the main drum-beater for the Good Friday Agreement and its surrender to Britain of the there-to contested Six-Counties. It was the largest surrender of territory in history absent catastrophic military defeat – and the IRA were NOT defeated.

  4. Throw him a life belt and sail on…. The Adamsites might pull him out as he regularly does for them….

  5. You are, of course, correct to stand in solidarity with Mr. O’Dowd on this issue. But he is perhaps the most irritating Irish person in America. Most recently, he has labeled all those who opposed the presence of a PSNI contingent in the New York St. Patrick’s Day parade as “dissidents,” by which he really meant to accuse them of support for “terrorism.” Certainly those who do back the remaining physical force Republican remnants opposed the PSNI’s inclusion in the parade. But so did a lot of socialists and true democrats who oppose the settlement in the north backed by SF, the DUP and the British and American governments. O’Dowd uses the “dissident” label in the same way that AIPAC uses “anti-Semite” as a slanderous insult to discredit any opposition to the status quo in Israel/Palestine. It’s a classic McCarthyite tactic: apply a toxic label to all your political opponents in order to avoid the need to confront what they are actually saying.

  6. Well, in my sectarian Trotskyist youth they always told me I was too soft.

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