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and the ‘Process’ rolls merrily onwards!

By Mike Cunningham On April 13th, 2014

Not too many journalists’ work makes me pause, and recognise that amongst the millions of words pumped out about the so-called ‘Peace Process’, with all the blind eyes and deaf ears turned away from the truth which just plain refuses to just shut up and go away, there sometimes appears an article, a commentary which rings true; and so from Jenny McCartney:-

A 43-year-old man called Seamus Daly was charged last week in connection with the 1998 Omagh bomb, the worst single republican terrorist atrocity in Northern Ireland’s history. A massive car bomb exploded in the central shopping area of the town on a busy Saturday afternoon: bungled, inaccurate warnings from those responsible meant that civilians were placed at maximum risk. In the explosion, 29 people died, including children, teenagers and one woman who was heavily pregnant with twins.
The attack was carried out by the “Real” IRA, a dissident group in opposition to the strategy pursued at the time by the Provisional IRA. For years, the prosecution went nowhere. Finally, the families of the victims succeeded in 2009 with a landmark civil prosecution against four men linked to the Real IRA, who were ordered to pay compensation of £1.6 million. One of them was Daly, who still denies involvement.
Just a couple of days before Daly’s arrest, another republican once linked to bombing campaigns appeared in the news: Martin McGuinness, the former IRA commander and current Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland. He was attending a white-tie banquet with the Queen at Windsor Castle. The long list of atrocities against civilians committed by the Provisional IRA contains details no less searing than those of Omagh – from the 1978 La Mon bombing (in which 12 guests at a hotel dinner dance were burned to death by an IRA napalm bomb) to the 1993 Shankill bomb, which killed nine shoppers.
Now, I know that the logic of the “peace process” is that a line has been drawn under past IRA and loyalist violence in the understanding that there would be no more of it. This difficult bargain was enshrined in the Belfast Agreement, and resulted in the early release of paramilitary prisoners, one of the hardest things for both Protestant and Catholic victims of sectarian terrorism to bear. That much, at least, was out in the open. And yet, as has emerged of late, other deals relating to the IRA have been fervently concealed. It appears that London and Washington would do anything to ensure that IRA members did not face the consequences of their actions, even when they broke the rules.
Last week Mandy McAuley, a reporter for the BBC’s Northern Ireland Spotlight team, aired her impressively detailed investigation into the IRA’s gun-running from the US during its ceasefire. She interviewed Mike Logan, a self-avowed Florida gun-runner, who described in detail how from 1995 until 1999 – throughout two IRA ceasefires and the Belfast Agreement – he smuggled firearms into Northern Ireland at the behest of Sean Murray, now a key Sinn Fein negotiator, who has described the allegation as without foundation. Logan alleged that one of the guns he imported was used in the 1997 IRA murder of two RUC constables, David Johnston and John Graham, who were shot in the back of the head while on patrol in Lurgan (the IRA resumed its ceasefire the following month). The programme showed PC Johnston’s seven-year-old son Louie at the funeral, his face contorted in an agony of loss.
Logan said that the gun-running only stopped when four other men who had become involved were caught. The US prosecutor of the four known as “the Florida Four” said that senior White House officials put him under extreme pressure to withdraw his statement that the guns were meant for the IRA. The truth about the importation of IRA arms could not be told, you see: surreally, it might affect the “peace process”.
Add to this the secret “letters of assurance” given by the Northern Ireland Office to IRA fugitives, which effectively provided them with immunity from prosecution. There is also the recent testimony to MPs from Norman Baxter, a former senior police officer, that Downing Street had leant on him in 2007 to cease questioning an IRA suspect. There are, too, allegations by Martin McGartland, a West Belfast Catholic man who became a valuable British agent within the IRA, that there was a cover-up surrounding a 1999 assassination attempt on him, to avoid linking the guns used to the IRA.

I don’t want to see a fully-fledged IRA campaign start up again; I grew up in Northern Ireland under that dark shadow and saw the endless scenes of pale, stricken relatives walking behind coffins. But as more evidence emerges, I also see a British government so desperate not to rock the boat that it is prepared to pardon – without public consent – those who caused the violent deaths of its own citizens, to overlook gun-running, and to contort and suppress the truth.

I wonder what it says to those who would commit such terrible acts in the future. I wonder what it says about justice. And I wonder to myself: what has Britain become?

73 Responses to “and the ‘Process’ rolls merrily onwards!”

  1. Like yourself the Real ira organisation are and were always opposed to the peace process. It is almost their entire motivation. Like many of the posters here they want to get back to a war process as quickly as possible. The only thing standing in their way is the will of the vast majority of people in Ireland who are supporters and defenders of the peace process you despise.

  2. Yeah, the piece rings true. It’s beyonf doubt that London, under threat from the White House, surrendered to terror. What we’ve learned since is just how complete the surrender was. It’s so complete that an IRA terrorist will never again be charged with any acts already done.

  3. “terror”

    Oh, FFS.

  4. Problem, Tarasov?

  5. Pete

    The people who live there endorsed the agreement.

    What do you know that the people of NI and ROI do not know?

  6. Brainy Bob’s daughter Jenny rehashes another old news story:

    http://www.atangledweb.org/?p=49837#comments

    The sound of barrels being scraped is audible.

    It’s so complete that an IRA terrorist will never again be charged with any acts already done.

    A 43-year-old man called Seamus Daly was charged last week in connection with the 1998 Omagh bomb, the worst single republican terrorist atrocity in Northern Ireland’s history

    Hyperbole much Pete?

  7. There can be no lasting ‘peace process’ until some closure is achieve – ie. those responsible for decades of slaughter and maiming are brought to justice.

  8. I love the way your hate for the US Pete places the blame for all this on the Americans.

  9. True.

    The mask slips every day.

    The peace process, flawed as it was and is, was an Irish thing , Irish as in both north and south – it got lots of support from friends in London and America – but anyone who thinks it was imposed by anyone from outside has not spent any time thinking about the issues, and about the solutions.

    I don’t recall anyone before speaking of the US involvement as being a threat of any kind. I fear that our man’s Irish bona fides are as valid as his economics bona fides. Its clueless ectremism.

    ( And I absolutely think that the pp can and should be the subject of criticism. )

  10. The political leader who pushed hardest for the peace process was Tony Blair. It comes as no surprise that lies and deceptions were the foundation. There was a chance to do something worthwhile but not with Blair. Over fifteen years later and the legacy of dirty deals, poor political thinking and confusion becomes more and more apparent.

  11. New Yorker

    You’re one of the serious people here.

    Let me ask you what may be a difficult question.

    I am of the opinion that Clinton and Blair ( whatever their flaws were , whatever the flaws of the process were) had only one motivation as respects GFA and all negotiations around it.- and that was to find a decent solution to one of the world’s nastiest and longest lasting conflicts.

    Do you agree that they were sincere, or do you think that there were wicked ulterior motives?

  12. The man who deserves most of the credit (and it is credit not blame we are talking about) for the peace process sis John Hume. Everything stemmed from his analysis and it was around that we built a process that has the support of the vast majority. Nobody got exactly what they want but we got something we could live with instead of something we were dying from.

    I know the modern world is a disappointment to many contributors here but their comes a time when you have admit peace has achieved more than war. In that case what moral case can their be for rejecting peace because you think the way it was done was wrong. Would any of you honestly go back to 1998 and stop the Agreement if you could?

  13. Would any of you honestly go back to 1998 and stop the Agreement if you could?

    Are you serious Simon? There’s quite a few here who would relish the thought, (as long as it was someone else doing the dirty work of course).

  14. by dirty work he means actually either arresting or killing the terrorists

  15. //It’s beyonf doubt that London, under threat from the White House, surrendered to terror.//

    It surrendered to British and world opinion. There can hardly have been a governemnt measure as popular in England as the signing of the Good Friday Agreement.

  16. Pete

    What’s your source for that comment? Who told you this?

    Don’t tell me you pulled this pearl of wisdom out of your ass.

  17. By dirty work he means actually either arresting or killing the terrorists

    Actually I don’t, I mean overturning the expressed democratic will of the people of the island of Ireland when 71.1% of the turnout voted fot it in the state of Northern Ireland and 94.4% of the turnout voted for it in the Republic of Ireland.

    But how could you ever know the facts?

    But while we’re on the subject of ‘arresting or killing the terrorists’ why not grow a pair of balls and do it yourself?

  18. It’s funny – as far as I know none of the Super Duper Unionists here ever managed to serve in the Btitish Army. I guess they were busy clipping their toenails when the recruiter came around.

    I have a good friend who served in the British Army in Northern Ireland. Nearly got blown up there one day on the Monagh By Pass. And let’s just say that he doesn’t have the highest opinion of any political group there, including the Super Duper Unionists who he regards as being the heart of the problem.

  19. That’s right Phantom. It’s strange that those who shout the loudest about the IRA and ‘terrorism’ differ so much from some who actually served there.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C_M7MhN81hc

  20. I know one fact. You’re a supporter of terrorists.

    That casts your belief on a situation regarding how they should be trested right out in the trash where it belongs.

    If the majority of people believe to gain political power it’s ok to blow up woman and children than that society has no redeeming quality.

    You get what you deserve

  21. Troll

    You’ve given a pass to terrorists when it suits you, so you may not the best of all spokesman for the ” anti terorrism ” viewpoint.

    Israel elected into power the Likud Party, and every Likud voter know their terrorist history, against British and Arab military and civilian targets. And you’re very accepting of all that.

    So perhaps your next post should be on why you think that terrorism isn’t all that bad.

  22. If the majority of people believe to gain political power it’s ok to blow up woman and children

    So have you got the balls to do something about it or are you going to sit behind you computer keyboard and expect others to fight & die for you?

    Only sick and twisted evil bastards would advocvate any innocents let alone women and children being killed for anything.

    Oh, that’s right, you did.

  23. no bull, first off the jews aren’t still committing terror, second it’s a different situation.

    If the Irish want to use the jews as their justification than march a few million into the ovens.

    Now I don’t want to see that but that is the only way I accept your argument and give the Irish the same pass I give the jews.

    There are people on here that are promoting the acceptance of terror today, you Phantom are one of them. You can do that it’s your choice.

    I don’t

  24. Troll, you are terribly inconsistent on this issue.

    No one can deny that.

  25. Troll, Phantom –

    (Troll) – I blamed Washington, not the US. You should learn the difference.

    Now I did that strange thing; I referred to someone far more knowledgable than me on the mechanics of what happened. Conor O’Clery’s excellent book (‘The Greening of the White House’) is a real eye opener. It’s thoroughly recommended for anyone interested in the topic. This is a precis:

    The correspondent who demanded evidence of American support for the IRA cause (can anyone be so naïve as to doubt it?) surely must grasp that this act alone was decisive. In the Cold War years, the Anglo-American alliance was still too important for any US President openly to sympathise with the IRA, though Ronald Reagan had more than one frosty conversation with Margaret Thatcher on the subject, and I have always assumed that the ghastly and mistaken Anglo-Irish agreement of 1985 resulted at least partly from American pressure. Though the EU was by then also beginning to stick its oar into Anglo-Irish relations.

    But the Clinton intervention was something entirely new. It was done in direct and open defiance of the wishes of the British government, and on many occasions steps were taken behind Britain’s back. Britain’s vast and supposedly well-connected Embassy on the grandest stretch of Massachusetts Avenue in Washington DC was several times utterly wrong-footed, whereas Dublin’s tiny mission further down the hill was always on top of the case.

    My friend Conor O’Clery, then the Washington correspondent of the Irish Times, wrote an excellent book on the affair ‘The Greening of the White House’, which is a manual in miniature of American politics as it really happens, and describes the pressures and alliances that put Bill Clinton at the side of Sinn Fein and the IRA.

    At the heart of this was( and is) the enormous importance of the Irish-American vote, and of Irish-American money, in Presidential elections. The Irish vote is important in several of the states with the biggest electoral college votes, notably New York, Massachusetts, California, Illinois and Pennsylvania, and is not unimportant in Ohio either. Nor is it some sort of hick, backwoods section of the population. Irish America is now very well-represented in business, and has lots of money to contribute to Presidential and Congressional campaigns.

    Clinton’s big problem in 1992, was that Reagan Republicanism had stolen a lot of Roman Catholic working class votes from the Democrats. The issue of abortion had been very important in alienating them from the Democrats. He realised, being an astute campaigner, that he could regain many of these votes (without annoying the pro-abortion voters who were also essential to his victory) if he pledged to advance the Irish Republican cause. And so he did. He didn’t, as far as anyone could tell, care very much about it at the time, or know very much about it. It wasn’t a big deal in Arkansas.

    And he largely forgot his pledge until, after his Party suffered very bad mid-term reverses in November 1992, Irish America came to him and said , more or less ‘We helped you; now you help us’.

    Soon after that Mr Adams was laundered from terrorist Godfather into Man of Peace. The New York Times, the Izvestia of America’s liberal ruling class, started publishing adulatory drivel about him, and he went about comparing himself with the (peaceful) Black Civil Rights movement.

    In fact ( I think this was in Detroit) he actually appeared alongside the adored and revered Civil Rights campaigner Rosa Parks, who had somehow been persuaded to share a platform with him. I am rather proud that I asked him how he, an apologist for bloody violence, dared to so much as sit next to Rosa Parks.

    He turned angrily towards me, and snapped ‘Who said that?!’

    I was happy to identify myself, and to repeat it for the cameras of the local TV stations, who had missed it the first time.

    From then on, Mr Adams and I had a sort of relationship as his circus criss-crossed the USA. We only met in private and face to face once, in a Canadian TV studio green room in Toronto, and he made it very plain that he was displeased with my behaviour. It was a few months later when he came to open a Sinn Fein office in Washington DC, that he called for me to be ‘decommissioned’.

    This followed what is in many ways my favourite question to him. He had said that the new Sinn Fein office would not be a mere bureau. It would be a Sinn Fein Embassy in the American capital.

    As I said, it reveals the nuts and bolts of how the Clinton regime pressured London into treating with the IRA. I’d recommend it to any Britons who delude themsleves that there is any ‘special relationship’ between London and Washington. I’d recommend it also to anyone who thinks that Washington doesn’t deal with terrorists. Read this book and you won’t be able to keep a straight face when a president next comes up with that whopper.

  26. Troll, you are terribly inconsistent on this issue.
    No one can deny that

    He’ll have the brass neck to try. He’ll still be wrong though.

  27. I’d recommend it to any Britons who delude themsleves that there is any ‘special relationship’ between London and Washington.

    Well of course, but this is old news. There has been no meaningful “special relationship” for over 60 years:

    1956: Eisenhower pulls the plug on Britain’s Suez adventure
    1965-1975: Britain refuses military support to Uncle Sam in Vietnam
    1982: Uncle Sam very equivocal about Britain’s right to re-take the Falklands against its client dictator in Argentina
    1986: Uncle Sam invades British colony Grenada
    1994-1998: Uncle Sam supports Sinn Fein and strong arms Britain towards Good Friday Agreement
    2002: Britain willingly joins Uncle Sam in invading Afghanistan
    2003: Dubya at conference: “Yo Blair!”
    2003: Blair co-opts Britain to join Uncle Sam in invading Iraq, destroying his entire political capital in Blighty
    2008: Obama elected, Churchill portrait removed from Oval Office, Obama’s indifference to Britain obvious, game over for “special relationship”

  28. Peter –

    It goes as far back at least to the Washington Conference of 1921, when Washington tried to destroy British naval power.

  29. Pete

    Maybe, but it did revive during WW2. Largely thanks to Churchill, and maybe just an alliance of convenience, time-limited. Of course, intelligence co-operation continues with industrial sharing of hacked data, and no doubt this will continue.

    Off topic, Wenger to resign after FA Cup win next month?

  30. Peter –

    I can see him walking if we lose to Hull in the final, which is a possibly. If we win it then I think it’s 50/50, that he wants to see how things lie. There’s also the matter of qualifying for the Champs League. At the end it comes down to how he feels about the fans and the Board support, which is 100% in the case of the Board.

  31. Pete

    FA Cup is in the bag but Champs League is very doubtful now. I can’t see him wanting to lead the Arse into the Europa League.

    He has the support of the board because he has delivered financial success at the expense of football success. Most of the board have no genuine connection to the club or its traditions, they are foreign mercenaries, like most of the team.

  32. 1956: Eisenhower pulls the plug on Britain’s Suez adventure
    1965-1975: Britain refuses military support to Uncle Sam in Vietnam

    The UK had no right to expect support for a ( true ) imperial adventure in Suez

    The US had no right to expect support from friends like the UK and Canada when the US made the catastrophic error that was the Vietnam War

    A special relationship may has no greater value than when your friend tells you ” you’re wrong, you should not do that, and if you do I will not join you ”

    And its not exactly kosher to cherry pick the alleged list of mistake so that it starts after WW2, something of immensely greater importance than all the other matters combined. Peter you know much better than that.

  33. Phantom

    I know that the “special relationship” is dead. And my list was not cherry picked or based on “alleged mistakes”. I could have added that Cameron is as indifferent to the USA as Obama is to Britain.

  34. Maybe, but it did revive during WW2. Largely thanks to Churchill

    You may wish to read up on FDR some more.

    FDR completely outsmarted the isolationist Ron Pauls element who was very influential in the Congress.

    Without FDR, the great Churchill doesn’t have a partner across the Atlantic.

  35. Obama is cold to Britain, probably due to memories alleged British abuse of his tribal ancestors in Kenya.

    But Obama is a transitory phenomenon.

  36. Without FDR, the great Churchill doesn’t have a partner across the Atlantic.

    Agreed.

    But Obama is a transitory phenomenon.

    Maybe, but given the demographics the US will have an Hispanic president soon, maybe even next time. In that scenario the “special relationship” is history.

  37. I’ll take up residence in the White House before Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio move there.

    I think that these two would be deeply unattractive to many US Latins, most of whom are of not of Cuban ancestry like these two posers are.

  38. Phantom, on April 14th, 2014 at 7:31 PM Said:

    Troll, you are terribly inconsistent on this issue.

    No one can deny that.

    No I am terribly consistent on this issue, and it drives you all crazy.

    The Jews get a pass on past deeds of terrorism because millions were marched into ovens and gassed. Period.

    All other terrorists should be hunted down and killed. Regardless of race, religion, or nationality. Period.

    That has always been my position and always will be. Period!

  39. Yeah, consistently inconsistent.

    All other terrorists should be hunted down and killed. Regardless of race, religion, or nationality. Period

    As long as it’s someone else doing the hunting & killing (and dying) eh?

  40. //All other terrorists should be hunted down and killed.//

    Troll, you supported GW Bush who sat and chatted with former killers of the IRA and the sectarian murderers of the UVF.

    You are far too close to terrorism for my taste.

  41. how many of your family (not counting terrorists) are in the military Paul?

    I have 3 nephews and now a niece on active duty in the military. I have over a dozen wearing the blue here at home.

    Hunting down animals is the family business, it’s what we have done for over a century 🙂

  42. really Noel? you must do better than that. tsk tsk

  43. //I have 3 nephews and now a niece on active duty in the military. I have over a dozen wearing the blue //

    Troll, that’s now the 37th time you’ve told us that.

    I also admire the cops, but – and I’m asking you this again – if you worship them so much, why the hell did you not join them?

    Falling off a bike or whatever won’t wash as an excuse. There are also 100 jobs in the police and army that can be done sitting on your arse.

  44. sorry if a broken back and 3 years learning to walk again isn’t good enough for you, then again your opinion on the subject of my service means nothing to me Noel. I served my country and I would have been a cop if I hadn’t been injured.

    Did you serve in your military? Did you choose to support the people that you now support with excuses with an offer of your service? and yes I do mean the terrorists.

    You want me to accept your positions because of the environment that you were raised in, yet you discredit mine which were formed from the environment I was raised in. I ask you does that make sense? Is it logical?

    You, Paul, and others were raised around people and family with the views that you now espouse. I was raised around people that forged my views. It’s just that simple.

    Deal with it.

  45. Phantom

    I do think Clinton and Blair were sincere. But as politicians they had an appreciation that some political benefit might accrue. Their big problem was that they did not do a good job with the peace process. For example, there was no good plan on what to do with the guys who gave up their guns. Did they think they would take jobs at McDonalds and never consider that they would do what they knew best. That mistake accounts for many more criminals than usual all over Ireland and elsewhere. Clinton, Blair and their staffs were also way too naive in dealing with terrorists on both sides. Those type of people will lie, lie, lie. Nothing they say should be believed without corroboration and a mechanism to throw them behind bars if they do con you. That’s just two instances of what a poor job was done at a time when there was an opportunity to do something really good.

    Pete Moore

    What you posted is Peter Hitchens opinion. He makes a reference to Conor O’Clery but does not give a precis of Conor’s excellent book. I agree that people would get value from reading Conor O’Clery’s book, not so much from reading Hitchens’ columns.

  46. //sorry if a broken back and 3 years learning to walk again isn’t good enough for you//

    I don’t know. I’d imagine if you’re making a career in the police force or the army and you break your back, they’d have some back-up job for you once you recover. As I said, many jobs don’t involve any physical exertion, and if you can do your present job, you could also do 100 other jobs for the army/police.

    In short, the whole story doesn’t sound very likely as an excuse for why you’re not now in uniform.

    I also served.
    When I was a teenager, during the summers, I often worked in my cousins pub in Belturbet, serving drinks to the patrons. Mind you, Belturbet is right on the border to Northern Ireland, and no doubt some of those patrons were at some stage in the IRA. So I may have also served the men of violence.

    However, that was unintentional. Not like you, who put up on your site a picture of a man who had sat and dined with terrorists, both IRA and UVF.

    You should be ashamed of yourself, and very grateful that David lets you post here.

  47. you see Noel there’s another difference between you and I. I try to deal with you from a point of sincerity and you respond as a child.

    That’s ok I know and so does everyone else that you are incapable of a rational let alone intelligent discussion regarding your heroes that kill innocent civilians like the family members of those that no longer comment here.

    You and Paul and others are what you are, I am what I am. We are products of our environment. None of us will change our views, and even though some of you may drift away I never will. I will stay in your face until this site no longer exists, David asks me to leave, or I die.

    You support murder as a legitimate part of political discourse, you are no different than any of those that support the Islamic Jihadists now, or those that supported Hitler in the past. Your kind have always been amongst us.

  48. You support murder as a legitimate part of political discourse

    So do you. Proudly and often; you self obsessed maniac.

  49. welcome back Trip

  50. You don’t have to apologize for not being a cop, but you should stop playing the wanabee cop, fantasizing that you are one of them. ” I am one of the brave guys wot run to danger and not away from it “and all of that silliness. I hope that you don’t go on like this with real cops in the room.

    I’m a Lotto millionaire, except for the fact that I haven’t picked any winning numbers yet.

    You’re not one of that fraternity. Stop pretending to be.

    wan·na·be also wan·na·bee (wŏn′ə-bē′, wôn′-) Informal
    n.
    1. One who aspires to a role or position.

    2. One who imitates the behavior, customs, or dress of an admired person or group.

    3. A product designed to imitate the qualities or characteristics of something.

    adj.
    Wishing or aspiring to be; would-be.

  51. Troll,

    What is your view on the French Resistance? Based on your rationale they were non-uniformed terrorists. What about the Vichy French army? Again, based on your rationale, they were decent upholders of law and order.

  52. Reg

    If you want to discuss WWII and the French fine, but comparing any resistance that the French gave to a conquering German Army and their own traitorous countrymen is in no way a comparison to the Irish Terrorists, and if you choose to make that comparison go right ahead. Make your case.

    I’ll laugh while I refute it.

  53. //regarding your heroes that kill innocent civilians like the family members of those that no longer comment here. //

    I have no and never had heroes in the IRA, and it was you that drove Aileen from this site with your brutish comments.

    Maybe she also realised that you had on your site a permanent photo of a man, plainly your real hero, who sat and dined with the people who killed members of her family.

  54. I didn’t post the comment. and you make excuses for terrorists, like it or not it taints you.

    Put down the pipe Noel

  55. FFS – I’m sick of this shit.

    Seimi, on January 31st, 2014 at 11:41 AM Said:

    You acted like Arabs, your a disgrace. I love ya’s dearly but both sides deserve to be shamed.
    From the same person who would like to see the children of Republicans blown to pieces. Classy.

    The Troll, on January 31st, 2014 at 12:12 PM Said:
    and Seimi I never said the children of Republicans should be blown to bits.
    I said the children of ANYONE who supports those that planted bombs in civilian areas should be blown to bits.
    Now if you want to take the position that all republicans supported the blowing up of civilians and acts of terror than I guess in your view it would apply. 🙂

    So, you corrected me…and then…

    Seimi, on January 31st, 2014 at 12:21 PM Said:
    I said the children of ANYONE who supports those that planted bombs in civilian areas should be blown to bits.
    You advocate the violent deaths of children and you hold yourself up as some moral guardian here? It’s you who should feel shame, troll, not me.

    Aileen, on January 31st, 2014 at 4:46 PM Said:
    Troll
    I said the children of ANYONE who supports those that planted bombs in civilian areas should be blown to bits.
    I have to believe that you have mistyped this. If not, it is truly disgusting. I would say that yes those who support IRA terrorists deserve any pain going. However I cannot wish that children are slaughtered no matter how much their parents deserve the pain.

    Seimi, on January 31st, 2014 at 4:50 PM Said:
    He hasn’t mistyped anything, Aileen. It’s a wish he has repeated quite a few times on these pages.
    Aileen, on January 31st, 2014 at 4:54 PM Said:
    Seimi
    I hadn’t read that before. I had got the impression that he had said that the parents deserved it which is a different thing.
    I think a lot of people deserve things that I don’t wish to come about. However this message is clear.

    Aileen, on February 1st, 2014 at 12:03 AM Said:
    Right
    It has still not been retracted. This goes way beyond any notion of just trying to push buttons or get a rise out of someone or some sick idea of humour. It is sick and disgusting.
    David
    I greatly respect the principles stand you take against terrorists and the abuse you get, sometimes on here, for holding to this principle and you didn’t write this. However there is no way that I will continue to comment on a blog where someone with posting rights can put such a comment up. It is so distressing that I can hardly type.
    When I first heard that my mother had been murdered in the bomb all sorts of thoughts and images flashed though my head and I when I finally got talking to one of my brothers who had seen her I wanted to know how many bits she was in. I swapped round words and phrases in my head to come up with something less distressing for him but which would get me the information I needed. The best I could come up with was “is she in one piece”. Logically the same but it at least frames the question in terms of completeness rather than the alternative. Julian Armstrong was only 16 when he stood between his parents when the bomb went off. Apparently the last thing his mother did was push him forward. There he stood knowing both his parents were dead beside him. Stephen Gualt was also 16 as he stood beside his father who was decapitated beside him.
    Children being “blown to bits” is not funny. It’s not oh that’s just being passionate or oh that’s just pushing buttons. It is sick and I want no part of it.
    I fully appreciate that this will cause ne’er a ripple in the life of ATW. It is not intended to. It is me taking my stand for me.
    God bless.

    So, Aillen appealed directly to you to retract it. Your response was

    The Troll, on February 1st, 2014 at 12:12 AM Said:
    Aileen
    To address your concern directly this all goes back to a post where someone defended the actions of an IRA civilian bombing. It has been thrown back at me a million times.
    I said and I stand by it, that if you support people that planted bombs that killed or injured innocent bystanders I hope the same events befall your children.
    I feel that strongly about those that commit terror, and those that condone their actions with any kind of support.
    I will not reject or recant what I honestly believe. Blowing up civilians for political gain is mankind at it’s worst.

    So please stop peddling lies. Thank you.

  56. “if you choose to make that comparison go right ahead. Make your case.”

    You silly man. I wasn’t comparing the French Resistance to the bloody Provos. I was comparing the French Resistance to YOUR definition of “terrorists”…and they were found wanting.

    On another note – I don’t quite understand those who laud people “who served” as somehow always heroic and above reproach. Many soldiers are heroes and I have the utmost respect for soldiers who show bravery and sacrifice in wartime. But many others who join armies are ne’er-do-wells and wasters.

  57. how many of your family (not counting terrorists) are in the military Paul?

    My maternal grandfather served in the Royal Navy in WWII, I had two uncles that served with the British Army Parachute Regiment and Royal Marines in the sixties, two uncles that served in the US army, two cousins that seved in the US Military in Desert Storm and my cousin Brendan is currently a US Marine Corps Sergeant Major. Why?

    Sorry if a broken back and 3 years learning to walk again isn’t good enough for you,

    Actually it’s not good enough. Did I not read that you were once a pen pusher for the US Air Force or something? I going to assume that this was before or after you allegedly broke your back. if so why didn’t you have the balls to join the Marines or one of the infantry units instead of shuffeling papers?

    Troll, what you are is a military fantasist who knows about everything better than anybody, you wants to kill the bad guys from the safety of your keyboard using someone else as a proxy. Someone who loves to vicariously live their unfulfilled militaristic wet dreams by killing all who disagree with you (as long as you don’t have to do the fighting, killing and dying of course), I wouldn’t be surprised if you imagine yourself as the lone gunslinger filling the bad guy full of lead.

    In short, you’re an ignorant self obsessed fraud.

    you see Noel there’s another difference between you and I. I try to deal with you from a point of sincerity and you respond as a child

    I doubt you’d know sincerity or civility if it walked up and kicked you in your non existant balls but I will tell you the difference between you and me; I intensly dislike violence but recognise and agree that it is both necessary and justifiable you on the other hand seem to wallow in it, (as long as it’s someone else who’s inflicting / suffering it of course).

    You and Paul and others are what you are, I am what I am. We are products of our environment

    I am at least glad you admit that because I have no doubt that had you been born in the basket case of a place where I was born I dread to think what you’d have become. .

  58. The shared core values of the UK and the US are strong enough bonds that don’t break merely because over the lengthy progress of the decades there are episodes in which some interests or policies diverge.

    As for the NI Peace Process it is a transformative event, flawed in part as every human endeavor, but ultimately such a unlikely success that the word miracle could almost be used to describe it. But it is man made and thus no miracle and no Heaven on Earth has resulted. But the hard facts of real peace can not be discounted (even if ignored by those whose political position is solely condemnation of it).

    The US role in helping to mediate it was an honorable one, and credit is due to those who participated in the process (Clinton, Mitchell and others). But the Lion’s share of credit goes to the people of NI themselves who made it happen.

  59. Any discussion of the Peace Process here is quickly hijacked by the mindless bejabberings of Troll, and now by Pete, who has invented a story that the Always Evil US , in league with the IRA, threatened the British government into accepting a surrender to the IRA.

    These comments come from places of moral confusion and extreme bad faith.

    There have been legitimate criticisms of the Peace Process here, but they have not been made by those who, like Pete, who have made things up out of the air.

    Mahons nails it.

    The PP stinks, but it is much better than what preceded it.

  60. Well said, mahons. From any perspective from the 17th to the end of the 20th Century, the political reconciliation in and from the GFA really is little short of miraculous.

    There is, of course, also a lot of farce and baloney to it, but that just provides the added advantage of public entertainment.

  61. The NI Peace Process it is a transformative event, flawed in part as every human endeavor, but ultimately such a unlikely success that the word miracle could almost be used to describe it. But it is man made and thus no miracle and no Heaven on Earth has resulted.

    A succinct and incisive description.

    But the hard facts of real peace can not be discounted (even if ignored by those whose political position is solely condemnation of it).

    Although those who are ignorant of the facts will attempt to discount them nonetheless while the not so ignorant anti PP’ers will use the PP’s many flaws in an attempt to constantly undermine and discredit it.

  62. the only thing mindless is you Phantom

  63. Mahons if the “peace process” as it has come about is a miracle to you it’s time for you to go back to church.

  64. the only moral confusion are those of you that accept those that kill civilians into politics.

  65. Don’t forget those who give a pass to those who ” kill civilians into politics ”

    Every single time you forget your own views, we’ll kindly remember them in a prompt and immediate way for you.

  66. //the only moral confusion are those of you that accept those that kill civilians into politics.//

    Yet you put a photo of one of them on your blog as your hero.

  67. Troll, speaking of moral confusion, did you support Reagan sending arms to Iran and the simultaneous material support given to the ( often terrorist ) Contras in Nicaragua, both actions which were completely against US law?

    Reagan and Oliver North got away very lightly for these crimes.

  68. Obviously, I don’t think the US strong-armed the UK into the peace process… But I do remember the attitudinal sea change that took place during the transition from Reagan-Bush1 through the Clinton administration. It began in the early 80s with the Hunger Strikes and progressed with the arrest of Joe Doherty and eventually the other OTRs in the US, which, regardless of what you think of the IRA, raised US constitutional issues (and a court case that made it to the US Supreme Court) Irish-Americans on both sides of the Democratic/Republican divide became grassroots activists and lobbyists petitioning their representatives to pressure the UK to do “something”about Northern Ireland. All sorts of ideas were on the table. Senator Moynihan’s staff would wince when they saw me with newly trained amateur lobbyists and stacks of signed petitions. I was one of those dreaded and feared community organizers 🙂 who ‘trained’ people on the bus to DC how to lobby and met in hotel rooms with other neophytes from around the country the night before a “lobbying day” to discuss focus and strategy. You would have heard me on radio programs (flubbing spoken words much the same way I flub written ones on ATW), seen me (usually) ducking cameras but also appearing briefly on a PBS documentary about newly awakened Irish-American activists, etc. I prefer the behind-the-scenes stuff and had a big role in a media event that took place on the steps of The Capital. Those were the days…and before the name-calling starts, I never belonged to Noraid or Friends of Irish Freedom.

  69. And a huge boost for activism followed the murders of Attorneys Finucane and Nelson…a whole lot of Congressman and Senators are lawyers and other lawyers and legal professional groups had connections right past the staff and into the back offices…you know, where deals are done.

  70. V. interesting, Maírín mo chroí,

    You sound like you are very well placed to judge Conor O’Cleary’s book. Have you read it?

    I don’t think anything will ever change my mind that Clinton was genuine in his interest in peace in Ireland. He was just too knowledgeable of the place and too active in the process for it to be opportunistic.

  71. Yes.

    Clinton was a friend of both Ireland and Britain, who threw everything he had in helping to broker a deal that ended the violence for good.

    You wish to speak of a ” special relationship ” ? There it was in action. No one else would have had the prestige or political gifts to do it. This was politics at its best.

    As was mentioned recently, the GFA passed in a NI referendum with 71.1 percent of the vote in a heavy turnout.

    It is funny. The anti agreement people never get any votes, while the pro agreement people are elected time and again, yet we are told that this is an unpopular agreement forced upon NI and the UK by sinister American forces.

    ATW’s British voices are wildly out of step with Northern Ireland or British public opinion.

  72. I haven’t read O’Clery’s book but I should and shall put it on my list. I first got involved in the 80s, before Clinton was on anyone’s radar, so the grass-roots ground was swelling before he stepped foot in the garden… :-). I’d have to say Sen. Dodd would have had a huge influence on Clinton given his background and position at the time…that’s how I remember it anyway. For ‘activists/lobbyists’, he was one of the main go-to people. There were several key players in DC but he always had time for us. I believe Clinton was sincere in his efforts but we (the people) worked him good and did not let him forget.

  73. Phantom you the same as Noel confuse actions and plots taken by governments on an equal footing with the actions and plots of ski masked murderers.

    Elected officials are accountable and the congress tried their damnedest to nail Reagan. The terrorists instead of being persecuted got get out of jail free cards hero worshiped and elected to high office.