Passing the Sean Russell statue in the car, noticed this. A serious glisten of it from the road grabbed my attention. Is it the remains of the last attack, from the ‘day of the swastikas’, or something new? In retrospect,the serious glisten off the statue could be the result of an attempted clean up, for example.
Sean Russell was a veteran of both the 1916 Rising and the War of Independence. He was instrumental in establishing the IRA’s bombing campaign in the United Kingdom around the time of the second World War, a strategy he swore by the merit of. In Adrian Hoar’s wonderful biography of Frank Ryan ‘In Green and Red: The Lives of Frank Ryan’ he states that Russell insisted to a friend that
“I am not a Nazi. I’m not even pro-German. I am an Irishman fighting for the independence of Ireland. The British have been our enemies for hundreds of years. They are the enemy of Germany today. If it suits Germany to give us help to achieve independence, I am willing to accept it, but no more, and there must be no strings attached”
He has remained a controversial figure in Republican history, as he was vehemently opposed to the left-wing break in Republicanism led by men like Peadar O’ Donnell and even Frank Ryan years previously. If anything, he embodied that old hardline (and hard headed) motto that “England’s Difficulty Is Ireland’s Opportunity”
Some more serious ‘blasts from the past’: