Monday, March 09, 2009


Nationalists' Protection of Gunmen is Now Crucial Question in Ulster

Hugh Orde warned us terrorist activity was looming closer once again in Northern Ireland, but we didn't want to hear that. We have a curious ambivalence to the province. Visitors praise the friendliness of Ulster denizens as well as the beauty of the landscape but we have long had little patience with their incomprehensible 'medieval' disputes.

'Religion? what's that all about?' we secular Brits have sniffed. I recall my people loving grey haired old mother saying, despairingly after yet another atrocity, she thought the whole population should be torpedoed in mid Atlantic. But if you read any history of Ireland you begin to understand a bit more: the Troubles were the fruits of our centuries of misrule, come back to haunt us, as such things often do. Terrorism is never conceived and nurtured in a benign vacuum. My students at Liverpool who come from the province have been saying for a while that, even though the surface looks calm, the two communities are as divided as ever. [Tiny example: one, a Catholic, said another, a Protestant, would not be able to visit her house back home.]

It's weird to hear McGuinness and Adams condemning the violence when they would say nothing when their own platoons were doing it only a short while back. Cynics would say 'Yes, they condemn it now that they have won power for themselves'. But it is in reality a hugely positive sign. The real test will be if the Catholic community offer up the Real IRA assassins or continue to protect them as they did their predecessors for over three decades.

The mainland Brits who whinged about "Irish problems" making "Irish unity" the only solution to the problem ignored human decency and lacked any sense of history. The "United Ireland" they dreamt of was never an easy solution, and the Unionists can credit themselves for this. In fact Ireland has never been "United" in any meaningful sense.

The people who urged the Unionists to sacrifice themselves are the worst of us, the appeasers who would have sold out to Moscow, Saddam Hussein, Arthur Scargill or anyone else who offered a fight. Truly a fifth column. The unionists are the best of us. They help to defeat fascism in Hitler, when the likes of Gerry Adams' father was lighting bonfires for the Luftwaffe over the hills of North Belfast. They beat fascism then and then have the IRA well and truly beaten now.

I suspect Adams and McGuinness(both murderers) have adopted the political strategy in the false belief that they will ever get a "United Ireland". Dream on. The Real IRA probably realise the futility of this strategy and have decided to fight this lost cause. They merely prove the case for the necessity of British intelligence agents in Northern Ireland. Hopefully these agents find these people quickly, and flush them down the drains of anonomity. And if the Irish Catholic community don't assist in this, then they will be damned by their association.
How about scotland and ireland create a new combined nation,
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