1st Battalion Doire Brigade

Óglaigh na hÉireann volunteers from the 1st battalion Derry brigade: (l-r) John McDaid, Brian Coyle, Eddie McSheffrey, Patsy Duffy, Jimmy Carr, Gerry Donaghey, Eugine [sic] McGillen [McGillan], Charles English, Jim Movine, Richard Quigley, Barney McFadden, Dennis Heaney, Colm Keenan, Pat Harkin, John Starrs, Eamon[n] Lafferty. Lecky Road, Derry.

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Copyright © 2010 Peter Moloney

Cú Chulainn

A seven-year old Setanta become Cú Chulainn (Culann’s Hound) after killing the beast by driving a sliotar (the ball used in hurling) down its throat. “Mol na nóige [sic] agus tiocfaidh sí” [as written: praise the young and it will flourish]

Roumania Rise, Belfast

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Copyright © 2010 Peter Moloney

Peace Cannot Be Kept By Force

The theme “Remember the fallen from war” is illustrated by a bombed-out Ballymacarret library on Templemore Avenue and St. Patrick’s church, which is just across the street from the mural, both of which were hit during the blitz in 1942, a police land rover, Cuchulainn, and (representing peace??) Stormont. We are supposed to remember the dead because (perhaps) their deaths were, while necessary, misguided as means to peace, at least according to the saying along the bottom (sometimes attributed to Einstein): “Peace cannot be kept by force; it can only be achieved by understanding.” If you have a better interpretation, please leave a comment.

The mural was imitated on the hoarding around the Cultúrlann on the Falls Road during its renovation – see X01279.

Lendrick Street, Belfast.

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Copyright © 2010 Peter Moloney

Kevin Lynch’s

Kevin Lynch captained the Derry Under-16 hurling team to an All-Ireland trophy (see X02866). The hurling half of the local Dungiven CLG was renamed in his honour after the INLA volunteer died after 71 days on hunger strike in 1981. “Misneach ‘s dilseach” [Courageous and loyal]. Lynch is shown here in a setting of ancient Ireland, reminiscent of Setanta/Cú Chulainn. Main Street, Dungiven.

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Copyright © 2009 Peter Moloney

Léana An Dúin – Unbowed, Unbroken

Cú Chulainn stands dying, an inspiration to republicans fighting against the British (rather than Queen Medb), including those Lenadoon locals whose portraits adorn the apex: Tony Henderson, John Finucane, Tony Jordan, Brendan O’Callaghan, Joe McDonnell, Laura Crawford, Mairéad Farrell, Patricia Black, Bridie Quinn (Bridie O’Neill in the previous version of this mural). Repainted, with plaque on the right: “This mural, dedicated to the patriot dead of Lenadoon, was unveiled by Gerard O’Neill, Easter 2009.”

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Copyright © 2009 Peter Moloney

West Tyrone Command

Updated version of the monument to West Tyrone Command (seen in 2005) – perhaps with new fencing. A modern volunteer stands on the left, Cú Chulainn on the right. “In proud memory of Vol. Charles Breslin age 20, Vol. Michael Devine age 22, Vol. David Devine age 16. West Tyrone command, Ógliagh na hÉireann. Killed by crown forces near this spot23 Feb. 1985.” The three were killed in an alleged shoot-to-kill incident. Obituaries in An Phoblacht. Fountain Street, Strabane.

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Copyright © 2008 Peter Moloney

The Supreme Sacrifice

These are close-ups of the IRA memorial in Derry’s City Cemetery (“Erected Easter 1975”, with the roll of honour extended around the base and then onto additional stones, and a plaque added in 1991 on the 75th anniversary of the second hunger strike and seen first in 1994). “Arna tógáil An Cháisc 1975, ag Briogáid Dhoire, Ógliagh na hÉireann in ómós agus i gcuimhne ár gcomrádaithe a rinne a ardíobairt go saortar ár dtír dhúchais.”

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Copyright © 2007 Peter Moloney

Ulster’s Defenders

Ulster’s defenders, past and present, from Cuchulainn “Ancient defender of Ulster from Gael attacks”, via the 1893 UDU and WWI soldiers memorialised in the towers at Messines and Thiepval, to the modern UDA/UFF: “In memory of the officers and volunteers of A. Coy. UDA/UFF West Belfast Brigade who unselfishly dedicated their lives in defence of their country.”

There was also a Cuchulainn mural on Newtownards Rd in 1992 (updated in 2005), as well as ‘past defenders’ in the form of B Specials and UDR (1992 | 2005).

Among the volunteers listed on the stone, 19 year old Alan Simpson was shot in his home in nearby Highfield Drive.

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Copyright © 2006 Peter Moloney

Freedom Corner

This is a complete set of images of the UDA’s “Freedom Corner” along Newtownards Road, Belfast. The use of Cuchulainn as a loyalist icon (the mural is in its second incarnation – for the first, see Defender Of Ulster From Irish Attacks) rests on the theory that the people of mythical Ulster are different from those in the rest of Ireland and are related to ancient Scots: Dalaradia was “was a kingdom of the Cruthin in the north-east of Ireland and parts of Scotland in the first millennium.” The “Ulster Nation” flag/shield (which also appears in the final image) is a St Patrick’s cross on a blue background with six-pointed star and red hand, the flag of the Ulster (Northern Ireland) independence movement.

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Copyright © 2005 Peter Moloney