Friday, 18 July 2014

Orange Order - parades of murder and mayhem

01: Urban Orange Order parades remain as offensive and prone to violent eruptions as they've been since this anti-Catholic fraternity was formed in 1795. Despite this fact, still its members and supporters shamelessly seek to portray these as "respectful religious and cultural" parades. However - in addition to below referred to media reports and video evidence obliterating these boldfaced lies, the British Government introduced the 1832 Parties Processions Act to ban these triumphalist and derogatory anti-Catholic parades precisely because they were from the outset mired in serious public disorder, including rioting and murder; see below snippets of old and recent abusive and violent parades:-

02: On 12th July 2014, the Unionist Newsletter journalist Sam McBride accompanied the Orange Order's main parade in Belfast and reported:

'Band passed me earlier at Belfast Twelfth field singing "if you can't do the bouncy you're a Taig" with gusto. Orangemen marched behind' (a Taig being a Catholic and one being kicked to death like Robert Hamill).

03: Likewise, Unionist freelance journalist Alex Kane (the Son of an Orangeman from County Armagh) also attended the 12th July 2014 Orange Order parade in Belfast and not least observed:

'...The walk from the city centre to Shaftesbury Square was a dispiriting and slightly scary one.
The pavements were ankle-deep in broken glass, rubbish and discarded burgers.
Almost everybody seemed to be drinking cider, beer, Buckfast or wine straight from the bottle and many of them were already drunk: and it wasn't even midday.
Maybe they had been to the bonfires a few hours earlier and hadn't bothered going to bed. More disturbingly an awful lot of them seemed to be teenage girls.
They are singing, too: singing songs that are nakedly sectarian and brutally graphic about Catholics and the Pope...
This was a manifestation of The Twelfth that wouldn't make any sort of ‘outsider' feel welcome. It meant nothing to me.
It was noisy, boozy, sectarian and unpleasant.
It had nothing to do with a celebration of culture and everything to do with triumphalism and in-your-face bigotry.
That said, the police were terribly laid back about the whole thing. They were everywhere: probably aware that they should have been doing something about the on-street drinking, yet equally aware that the wrong action could trigger a riot...'

04: On the morning of 12th July 2013, the Orange Order's outbound (sober) feeder-parade from Ligoniel passed the Catholic Ardoyne district into Belfast city centre was restricted in size and the proposed evening homebound (drunken) parade was banned from passing Ardoyne.

05: Local Catholic residents had long complained a) parade bands would openly glorify UVF terrorist killers like Orange Order member Brian Robinson who shot dead Ardoyne Catholic resident Paddy McKenna outside Ardoyne shops plus b) the evening homebound parade was particularly bad due to participants having spent the day consuming alcohol and being feed a diet of anti-Catholicism. Notably, this particular morning parade was led by British MP Nigel Doods and Stormont MLA Nelson McCusland and was temporarily stopped by Police as it was massively oversize and thus in breach of the Parades Commission determination. The lead band in the parade thereupon broke into a rendition of their favourite anti-Catholic 'Billy Boys' tune (with the lyrics 'We're up to our necks in Fenian [Catholic] blood, surrender or you'll die") before the parade was down-sized and allowed to proceed toward Catholic residents whom were subjected to face-to-face sectarian abuse:

06: On the evening of 12th July 2013, the Police complied with the Parades Commission determination to halt the Orange Order's evening homebound parade at Twaddell Avenue. Within minutes, this so-called "religious and cultural" parade descended into a riot resulting in scores of Police Officers being injured. Within hours Orange Order members elected to Government sought to blame the Parades Commission, the Police and Catholic residents for the conduct of those involved in this Orange hate-fest season parade:

07: The Unionist community in north Belfast promptly set-up a supposed "civil rights camp" in Twaddell Avenue directly facing the Catholic Ardoyne district, claiming there is a "culture war" against their parades. Despite being confronted with the true fact their parades have doubled during the past decade and only 5% of these now 4,500 plus annual events are challenged, this sham "civil rights" campaign continues on a daily basis to issue outrageously inaccurate and misleading statements/speeches e.g here's the Orange Order's own Nigel Doods MP uttering two of his many contributions to this perverse campaign:

08: The Orange Order was borne from sectarian hatred toward Catholics and the British Government has long recognised the Orange Order has historically stoked conflict and division in society. Indeed, the true history of Orange Order parades is readily gleaned from the wording of the amended 1850 Party Processions Act titled "A Bill to Restrain Party Processions in Ireland" which states:

"... That from and after the passing of this Act all Assemblies of Persons in Ireland who shall meet and parade together or join in procession, and who shall bear, wear or have amongst them or any of them any fire-arms or other offensive Weapons, or any Banner, Emblem, Flag or Symbol, the Display whereof may be calculated or tend to provoke Animosity between different Classes of Her Majesty's Subjects, or who shall be accompanied by any Person or Persons playing Music which may be calculated or tent to provoke Animosity between different Classes of Her Majesty's Subjects, shall be unlawful Assemblies..."

09: The British media shamelessly avoid ever robustly tackling the Orange Order and Unionist political party supporters about the fact, the Orange Order parade' season has always been mired in public disorder and sometimes murderous mayhem - here is a tiny sample of the most infamous parades:-

12th July 1797, 8 Catholic Militia men were murdered during clashes at the first recorded Orange Order parade in Stewartstown, Aghalee, County Kerry;
12th July 1813, 2 Protestants were killed and 4 Catholics wounded when Orange Order members shot at a crowd of protestors in Hercules Street, Belfast;
12th July 1829, 16 people were killed during Orange Order parades, eight in Enniskillen, seven in Clones and one killed in Stewartstown;
12th July 1831, 5 Catholics were shot dead in Rathfriland and four were drowned near Katesbridge in the aftermath of Orange Order parades;
12th July 1849, 80 Catholics were killed and many Catholic homes burnt as a massive Orange Order parade marched through rural Dolly's Brae district outside Castlewellan;
12th July 1857, 30 plus people were killed in Belfast during ten days of rioting which commenced during Orange Order parades across the city;
12th July 1860, 16 Catholics were shot by Orange Order parade members when they were blocked from passing the Catholic church in Derrymacash, Portadown;
12th July 1886, over 30 people were killed in Belfast and many properties destroyed during prolonged clashes flowing from Orange Order parades trying to force their way through Catholic districts;
12th July 1921, 23 people were killed in Belfast and over 200 Catholic homes destroyed following clashes between Orange Order parade members and opposing Catholic residents;
12th July 1935, 8 Protestants and five Catholics were killed and over 500 Catholic homes destroyed in the prolonged season of violence which followed an Orange Order parade trying to force its way through the Catholic enclave of Lancaster Street in Belfast;
12th July 1972, 3 people were shot dead in the aftermath of an Orange Order parade in Portadown;
12th July 1985, 52 Police Officers were injured and 43 people arrested following the re-routing of Orange Order and Black Institution parades away from the controversial Catholic 'Tunnel' district in Portadown;
12th July 1998, due to Catholic Garvaghy Road Residents ongoing blockade of abusive Orange Order parades through their district to Drumcree in Portadown loyalist supporters firebombed the Ballymoney home of a Catholic Mother, killing her three young boys (these were 3 of the 10 killings associated with this particular parade route dispute);
12th July 2004, severe rioting erupted between Police and Catholic residents when Police forced a parade of so-called "parade followers" passed the Ardoyne district;
10th September 2005, Orange Order parade erupts in rioting and shooting at Police after their parade was re-routed a 100 metres away from the 100% Catholic Whiterock district of west Belfast;

10: As has been noted by international observers Orange Order parades glorify pro-British Unionist terrorist organistions, hence their claim to be 'religious parades' is an absolute farce that ought to shame those members of it who purport to be Christians. Indeed, members should be utterly ashamed to claim their core values are 'civil liberty and religious freedom' given they ignited a 30 year conflict of murder and mayhem when they led a counter-protest march to disrupt a genuine Civil Rights march by Irish Catholics e.g the Derry Apprentice Boys anti-Civil Rights counter-protest on 05th October 1968.

11: Alas - unlike their rural counterparts, urban Loyal Order lodges have been slow to realise that in districts where Catholics are the majority there's a simple choice. Namely, if your parades are not disrespectful towards Catholics they will not oppose or block them - this is what caused a sea-change in the attitude of Loyal Orders in places like Derry city and elsewhere.

Its now 2014 and the Loyal Orders are no-longer able to act as the vanguard of a supremacist imperialist movement of Protestants who could dominate and so do with extreme vulgarity... the 'croppies' will never again lie down!!!


P.s Do please also read my earlier related blog post: Orange Order - myths lies distortions ignorance & misunderstandings and Susan McKay's book: Northern Protestants - an unsettled people


  1. Another informative read. I've never been a fan of the Orange Order, viewing it as an organisation which sustains an anachronistic Unionist and Protestant superiority complex, and which is chiefly and ironically composed of working class Protestants who in reality are very far from possessing cultural or socio-economic superiority. However, if the Orange Order glorifies "pro-British Unionist terrorist organisations", do Republican Easter rising commemoration parades with uniformed PIRA members on parade not glorify Republican terrorism? Irish Republicanism's most glaring weakness is it's predilection to glorify the PIRA as "Irish patriots" and "Irish freedom fighters", whilst hypocritically denouncing Loyalist paramilitary groups as "Loyalist death squads" and "terrorists". Can you not see the risibility and supreme irony in this approach?

    NB. I have never been a supporter of Loyalist terrorist organisations, very much the opposite. Neither did I support or empathise with Republican terrorists. All of that carnage was unnecessary, and in fact, counter-productive to the achievement of the Irish Republican objective.

    1. I intentionally borrowed that well-worn "terrorist glorifying" labelling from political Unionism, to apply it to the very organisation the DUP/UUP/TUV/PUP et al roundly support.

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