From Socialist Voice, December 2010

Flms

Big oil, small village


The Pipe: Big Oil, Small Village. A film by Risteard Ó Domhnaill.

This is a new documentary film on the struggle of the people of Rossport, Co. Mayo, to defend their community against the the Shell oil corporation and its activities.
     The Corrib gas field was discovered in 1996. The Irish state gave the company a bargain deal, to such an extent that the Norwegian state will get more revenue from the Irish gas field than the Irish state will.
     The film opens with an overflight of the rugged and beautiful landscape of north-west Mayo. It then brings out very clearly a number of crucial issues.
     In the first place, this small community had the will and the determination to resist the bullying and blackmail of Shell. Despite huge pressure on them from the state, the meddling of the local Catholic church, and the buying off of different sections, including some elements of the local fishermen, they stuck doggedly to their resistance, even enduring prison sentences.
     Another crucial area revealed in the film is the vast network of repression inflicted on local people, both by the state and by private “security” companies employed by Shell. (One of those individuals ended up being shot in Bolivia, having entered the country with a bogus security company believed by many poor Bolivians to be part of a plot to overthrow the government.)
     This is a great film to show that when people are and remain united they can take on the biggest of global corporations, and the untrammelled abuse of power by the forces of the state. Under siege and almost curfew-like conditions, they dare to struggle, they dare to win.
     While the battle is still going on, the heroic struggle of this community remains an inspiration to everyone as we as a people face new struggles to regain our national political and economic sovereignty.
     The socialisation of all our natural and marine resources will be an essential element in building a new and sovereign republic. If we resist we can win; for without hope we have no future.
     Get along and see it.
[EMC]

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