View Full Version : Plaque to Inchicore Men Who Fought in The Spanish Civil War

28-04-2013, 09:46 AM
A plaque will be unveiled In Inchicore on Saturday 4th May at 4pm to honour the memory of six Inchicore men who fought in the Spanish Civil War. The men are;

Tony Fox (1914-1936) Goldenbridge Avenue

Mick May (1916-1936) Connolly Avenue

Bill McGregor (died 1938) Crumlin

Paddy McIlroy (1911-?) Nash Street

Joe Monks (1915-1988) Park Street

Bill Scott (1908-1980) Ring Street

The Plaque will be erected at 109 Emmet Road (opposite St. Michael's Church)


C. Flower
28-04-2013, 10:08 AM
Did three of them die in Spain ?

It is good that they are being remembered.

It's a fine poster.


28-04-2013, 10:17 AM
Did three of them die in Spain ?

It is good that they are being remembered.

It's a fine poster.

Yeah, Fox, May and McGregor all died in the war.

Joe Monks died in 1988....... he wrote a book called "With The Reds in Andalusia"

Sam Lord
28-04-2013, 11:58 AM
A great initiative.

28-04-2013, 05:53 PM
This is a good gesture.

28-04-2013, 07:25 PM
With the Reds in Andalusia
Joe Monks 1915-1988

Published by the John Cornford Poetry Group, 1 Luscombe House, West Hill, London SW18 1RW. 1985

Fighting flared up again in Andalusia on the 14th December, 1936 when General Queipo de Llano, since July ensconced in what had become his fiefdom of Seville, ordered an offensive to be launched against the positions that were held largely by pro-government, anarchist militias in the province of Cordoba. The war-planes of the Nazi interventionists assisted de Llano’s Fascists in this offensive and the villages which lay in the path of the advancing soldiers were bombed. Thus the people, working the farmlands by the banks of full flowing Quadalaquivir, who had rejoiced in the implementation of the socialist policies which they had voted for in the February general election, now saw their dreams dashed to the ground as their homes were set ablaze to become naught but beacons of war, sending their flames to the sky.

That same day saw the end of a Fascist offensive in the region of New Castile when the defenders of Madrid, with the determination of last-ditch fighters, held on in a bloody battle at Boadilla, and fought to a standstill the forces which General Francisco Franco had planned that he would encircle the city from the north-west suburbs.
After nightfall on that December day the volunteer contingent for the International Brigade, of which I was a member, was conveyed by buses across the frontier from France, and without incident went over the hilly road to the fortress of Figueras in Catalonia.

We were allowed a day of rest at Figueras. There, the Catalan guide who had met us at the Plaza de Combat in Paris said goodbye. He was a pleasant young man, and a fine linguist. He had been able to make conversation with most of the volunteers, from perhaps a dozen countries, that had mustered in the Trade Union’s premises at the Plaza de Combat. His command of English was superb. He had passed us off to the French frontier officials as Spaniards returning to fight for the motherland, and we Irish claimed that he had not lied on our behalf since our ancestors, the= Milesians, had once inhabited Spain.

The popularly elected Responsibles for the English-speakers in the contingent were Frank Ryan and David Springhall. They both looked big and burly, attired as they were in great leather coats. Frank Ryan maybe gained in military appearance in that he wore new highly polished top boots. Frank Ryan was jibed at by Frank Edwards. Edwards jeered Ryan for looking like a Boor-commando, and I enjoyed the joke not knowing then that I was destined to have Edwards as a companion throughout most of my days in Spain, and that I would have to get used to being jibed at by the greatest jeer that ever came out of County Waterford.

Although Edwards even in the worst of situations would always be a maker of fun, in his heart he was a bitter man. His bitterness was directed against the Irish establishment, particularly against the Catholic hierarchy that had had him dismissed from his school teaching post for exercising his rights to be a member of the Irish Republican Congress Party and to advocate socialist solutions for the nation’s major problems. The Republican Congress Party was an open democratic party acting within the law and the State, therefore, should have protected Edwards. However, in the event the word of the Bishop of Waterford was law and deprived of a living, Edwards left for Dublin where for negligible pay he assisted Ryan in the Party’s print works for some of the time.

Strange it was that Edwards was unjustly treated at the hands of a tyranny that James Joyce had recognised in the countenance of the Irish Nationalist movement. Joyce had resisted the efforts of George Clancy his closest companion when they were both students at University College, to become involved in the Nationalist movement largely because he feared that the theocratic tyrants that had been hand in glove with the British imperialists when they downed Parnell would be greater tyrants still were they ever to become a hierarchy holding special links with the Nationalist rulers of an Irish Free State.

Our stay in the fortress was not to pass without incident. After midnight on the 15th December, a bullet ricocheting off the concave wall of the chamber in which we slept recalled us from our dreams. Shocked, I sprung out from the warm white sheets, and joined a line of comrades. We stood in shirttails confronting two militiamen that aimed their pistols at us. They held one of ours a prisoner. Ryan took in the situation in an instant and shouted orders that none was to interfere.

Ryan said that the prisoner, the worse for wine, was disgracing us all. Shouting in French, Ryan tried to tell the Catalan guards that they had our support. Luckily they comprehended what his gestures intimated. He got dressed and went with the Catalans to lodge the drunk in the guardhouse. We got back to our beds and amazingly, unperturbed by the pistol shot in the night, got our heads down to the important business of catching up on the sleep lost since the journey began.

Shortly after first light we were dressed and ready to move on. At the cookhouse door we were served with hunks of fresh bread and bowls of black coffee. Most of us would have preferred buttered bread and sweetened tea. Indeed some could not stomach the black coffee; however in the months to come those who survived learned to prize above all else in their day to day existence the mugs of piping hot coffee that on most mornings reached the front line just after the dawn stand-to.

The fortress Commandante, a Catalan who spoke French badly, gathered the Internationalists around him. He praised us and wished us bon voyage. We Irish thought of him as a comic because he reminded us of General O’Duffy, Ireland’s would-be Fuhrer who was the leader of some six hundred Irishmen then at Caceres in the region of Estremadura. There in conquered Estremadura O’Duffy was taking orders from General Franco. The fortress Commandante was attired in a blue shirt, black beret and breeches, with a Sam Brown belt to complete the attire of the Irish Fascist. He was very pleased that his guards had apprehended one of the agents sent in by the reactionaries to disrupt and destroy the Republican Army.

In the confusion caused by a villainous loner good Internationalists could have been shot, but this had not been the case because his guards had acted with alacrity. He was sure that we would be glad to know that this unknown mystery man would face a court-martial, and execution. Springhall pushed a Londoner named Stone to the fore to translate in the shouting match that had developed between Ryan and the Commandante. Youthful Dubliners regarding what was going on as an amusing mistake began to shout "release the pri-son-er". They mimicked the shrill voices of "Madam’s Auld-ones" (a brave band of women, led by Maude Gonne MacBride that constantly demonstrated in Dublin on behalf of the Republicans in jail). For a little while it looked as if the Commandante would refuse to relinquish his catch but eventually he began to smile when it became all too apparent that not only was the prisoner known to those travelling with him — he was in fact a trained Marxist. Indeed a well known "bon camarada".
Freed from the dungeons our Marxist was soon whistling the Marseillaise with us as the contingent, cheered by the morning sunshine, marched away from the fortress to board a train for Barcelona.

The train was festooned with buntings and red flags. It was crowded with Militia units. U.G.T. was painted on the front of the great locomotive’s boiler and the initials of the other workers’ unions - the C.N.T. and the F.A.I. - were on the left and right sides of the carriages. At the carriage windows we saw clenched fists and smiling faces. The Catalan lads were quick to accept us as blood brothers. Thousands were at the railway station to meet us and everywhere we saw the black and red colours of Anarchism. The public buildings were all decorated with flags and buntings. The lads and lassies, mostly in (monos) boiler suits, wore Anarchist neckerchiefs or arm bands. Flowing beards were in abundance. A bearded camarada took a red flag off the train and presented it to Frank Ryan. Frank took it and, holding it aloft, marched at the head of the contingent. The demonstration, making its way through the center of the city, took in the consul buildings of the so-called democracies.

At each building we raised the slogan "Arms for Spain". Many of the people in the streets were armed because the hunt was still on for the Fascists that had escaped after the July fighting in the city. But Springhall commented on how time and manpower was being wasted. He thought that every available Catalan should be on active service on the banks of the Ebro putting as much pressure as possible on the enemy whilst he was low in manpower. The Fascists still held Saragossa. Springhall feared that there were political groups in Barcelona that given a chance would do a deal with Franco: sign a separate peace in return for a free Catalan state; and ditch Republican Madrid.

The Anarchist leaders who led the people successfully in the battle for the streets were sadly without policies when it came to the prime matters of government and the waging of military campaigns. President Companys and his administrators had been left in office, holding executive power in an autonomous Catalonia. At ground level in both industry and agriculture there were widespread efforts to introduce workers’ control, and a visitor to Catalonia could be forgiven for believing that the revolution had carried the day; and that Barcelona was a 20th Century city in which the workers were in the saddle.

This is what George Orwell concluded from what he witnessed in Barcelona. He too arrived in December 1936. He thought of joining the International Brigade but instead he opted for a P.O.U.M battalion which was included in the 29 Division. Having been given rations and packets of unrolled cigarettes (pillow slips) in the Carl Marx barracks, we departed from Barcelona at 4 o’clock on the afternoon of 16th December and reached Valencia at midnight. A hot meal awaited us in the station restaurant. In the early hours we resumed our journey, and Ralph Fox was on the station platform to receive us when we reached Albacete on the morning of the 17th December. He conducted u~ to the Grand Hotel. There was nothing grand about it. We slept on hard, bench seats that were covered in velvet; but our great discomfort, being as we were for the first time abroad, was the condition of the lavatory; the plumbing had failed and the floor was awash with ***** that stunk to the skies. Fortunately there was a public lavatory in the street outside. Some of the Dubliners found it embarrassing to go there because it had a woman attendant who, in return for the coins that were thrown onto her saucer, gave out pieces of cut-u p newspaper.

We were fed in the Casa Salamanca where we met Professor Haldane. He was spending his Christmas vacation as an adviser to the defenders of Madrid on matters to do with the enemy’s suspected use of gas bombs and shells. We were addressed by Andre Marty, the Chief of the International Brigade base. He was wearing battle dress. His face and especially his small moustache looked very white under the large black beret that he wore. His aides, mostly French, in the Albacete administration, also wore large berets. We cheered this French revolutionary whose family history in the working class struggle went back to beyond the Paris Commune. And he too was a maker of history; had he not tilted the course of events when, as a sailor in the French fleet, he stepped forward to lead the Black Sea Mutiny? This mutiny greatly reduced the effectiveness of the intervention which the French imperialists directed against the new Soviet Republic at a time when the infant Red Army faced many enemies both foreign and domestic.
Marty, in his opening remarks, gave us the impression that he would sooner not have "Englishers" around; that they were more trouble than they were worth.

Thus our cheers were all the stronger when he spoke warmly of the "Englishers’ "valour as displayed by the first volunteers from our shores that were up on the Madrid front. More than half of them had fallen in battle and Marty spoke of them with great respect. He told us that he expected a high standard of discipline to be upheld by all in the International Brigade. To a great extent it had to be self-discipline because neither lash nor executioner’s bullet would be used on the International volunteers who were the true sons of Liberty. We were seated at the arc of the bull ring that caught the morning sun. We were excited and full of laughter.

Dave Springhall made a point of calling the attention of the Irishmen to the advertising boards that bore business names, many having Jesus as the first name. He rightly suspected that the Irish would regard the popular use of Jesus as a practice bordering on sacrilege. They did, too. He asked about the reactions to the wrecked churches and the replies suggested that none of the Irish, particularly the non-believers, liked to look upon a desecrated church. Indeed one youth had been seen to physically close his eyes to such scenes as the demonstration went through the streets of Barcelona.


29-04-2013, 05:21 AM
General Queipo de Llano was the perfect example of what Franco's rule was to mean in Spain and Seville is where the Phalangists' ideology was put into practice with a perfect union of the military, the Catholic Church, and institutions of state such as the universities.

General Queipo, in the center, with Bishop Pedro Segura and the rector of Seville University Mota Salado

It is only as recently as 2008 that Seville University has come to terms with the purge of at least a third of teachers on the instructions of Mota Salado during the Franco regime.


03-05-2013, 12:49 PM
A lot of regular rebels committed to turning up tomorrow.

07-05-2013, 09:51 PM
Unfortunately I did not see this post until today otherwise I would have attended, was there a good turn out? Will look out for the plaque next time I am in the area.

Sam Lord
08-05-2013, 12:10 AM
Unfortunately I did not see this post until today otherwise I would have attended, was there a good turn out? Will look out for the plaque next time I am in the area.

Up to 200 people I believe.

08-05-2013, 11:16 PM

Aengus O'Snodaigh Speaks at the unveiling.

08-05-2013, 11:22 PM
Manus O'Riordan at the unveiling.


08-05-2013, 11:24 PM
Mai McGiolla and Crina NiDailaigh at the unveiling.


09-05-2013, 04:55 PM
Provo and Stickie United!

http://www.politicalworld.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=406&d=1368114915Provo and Stickie United!

C. Flower
09-05-2013, 06:34 PM
Great photos, thanks.