Police came under attack from youths throwing missiles and petrol bombs from inside the City Cemetery after a Saoradh parade involving masked men and woemen in a colour party.
Said the veteran trade unionist: “The adults who encouraged children to throw petrol bombs in Derry at the cemetery on Monday were pushing them into a political dead end.
“If they really believe that handing lit petrol bombs to 10-year-olds will advance the cause of a united Ireland, or any other cause, they are dangerously unqualified to give leadership to children or to anybody else.
“The PSNI, as always, were ready to play their part in cynically coaxing out a response in deprived areas they’ve always treated with contempt.
“The vast majority of people steadfastly refuse to be dragged backwards into the cruel past.
“The Tories are laying waste to the lives of working-class communities. Families are under severe pressure to put food on their table.
“People are sick with fear about what the future might bring. The health and education systems on which today’s children will depend are chronically under-funded, in many instances close to collapse.
“We need a fight for drastic change.
“One of the problems facing all working-class people is that the main parties in this part of the world have no fight left in them other than fighting among themselves for seats in the Executive.
“That isn’t the reason petrol bombs were being hurled in Derry on Monday. But it helps create the context in which this came about.
“The futility of mainstream politics in the North has left a vacuum which can be be filled one way or another.
“Some are hell-bent on filling the gap with an age-old ideas which they can dress up as revolution.
“We do need a movement of militant resistance to the unequal way society is organised. But that can only be achieved by masses of people coming together to fight for a better world.
“People Before Profit believes in Irish unity. We need to unite the struggles of Irish workers, North and South.
“That, it seems to us, is the only perspective in which a united Ireland can become a practical reality as opposed to a colourful ideal.
“People of serious political intent know a rerun of what was tried from the 70s to the 90s isn’t going anywhere.
“And they won’t encourage youngsters to put themselves at risk by acting as extras in a dangerous drama based on distorted history.
“The children of Derry deserve better.”Tags: