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By ATWadmin On May 13th, 2008 at 6:42 am

I see that Britain’s answer to the FBI – the Serious Organised Crime Aagency (SOCA) – has abandoned it’s hunt for UK crime barons. Yes, in just one example of how the force of law and order is turning into a sad burlesque, we read that Soca, which publishes its annual report this week, has identified 130 crime barons it believed were controlling the drugs trade, human-trafficking and racketeering in Britain.  But none of those key figures has been prosecuted and the hitlist has been shelved after investigations revealed that many of the names on it were of minor importance.

It is understood that Soca is paralysed by a top-heavy management structure that has created rival fiefdoms. In addition to a chairman, director-general and ten-member board of directors, there are 31 deputy directors. The agency’s creaking computer systems,including intelligence databases, can only support limited numbers of users and many cannot share information with each other.  148 former police officers — many of whom were cherry-picked to join the unit — have retired or returned to policing, complaining of a lack of enforcement activity. A source said: “The experienced police officers are leaving in droves owing to management inefficiencies and incompetence and we are being left with a lot of very clever analysts and the like who wouldn’t know a Mr Big if he pulled out a gun and pointed it at their heads.”


There IS a problem with the British police. I believe it lies with the rise through the ranks of a bureaucratic management class which follows a quasi-political agenda in order to win patronage from the political elite. It is this tier of politically correct liberal-mined bureaucrats which has de-motivated Britain’s many excellent and hard-working police officers who merely seek to do their job and track down criminals. As I have written before, I believe that many of our most senior Police Constables have forgotten what the purpose of the police force actually is. 


By ATWadmin On May 13th, 2008 at 6:24 am

psnilogopa_thumb.jpgI see that Irish republican terrorists have exploded a car bomb just outside the town of Castlederg. 

The police officer who was driving the car concerned has been badly injured, though his injuries are not life-threatening, which is a small mercy.

Now then folks, let me say a few things here.

1. The very fact that the officer is a Roman Catholic means NOTHING to republican terrorists. The IRA specialised in killing and maiming any within the community it infested in order to prevail – remember the fate that befell young Roman Catholoc mother Jean McConville, whose only crime was to give comfort to a dying British soldier? The terror campaign was neve about religion as some pretend, it was about callous inhumanity.

2. There will be plenty arguing today that this bombing is the actions of a "tiny minority£ and that those who carried it out do not have "the support" of the wider nationalist community. I heard the exact same thing when the IRA was butchering those it disliked. It’s pure spin. Terrorists always represent a tiny minority, the problem is when the majority sanitise the actions of the violent few

3. The IRA won its way into government by bombing and killing. Our society, largely, approves of this. Those who do not – such as myself – are veritable outcasts. As you sew, so shall ye reap. Reward terrorism and you get MORE terrorists, and the scum that planted this bomb are NO DIFFERENT to the same scum that authorised the Poppy Day Bombing (Martin McGuinness, we are informed) and the La Mon House hotel atrocity (Gerry Adams, if Peter Robinson is to believed).

The sad fact is that terrorism pays here in Northern Ireland. Welcome to the peace process and drive carefully. Pragmatism uber alles is the national motto and God help anyone who speaks up plainly against the institutionalising of terror.


By ATWadmin On May 12th, 2008 at 6:35 pm

First there was the devastating cyclone that hit Burma which may have killed over one million people. Now there is a huge earthquake that has devastated south-western China, killing thousands. In both instances, the governing tyrannies have shown a lack of will to allow "outsiders" onto their soil to help bring aid.  In essence they are prepared to sacrifice their own people in order to preserve their sovereignty. The question is; what should our response be?

The NGO’s have been clamouring to gain access. Many foreign politicians have been demanding that Burma in particular allows help in. But the reality is that the Burmese dictators want to keep outside help OUT and unless we are prepared to invade then against their will then we must grant them their wish. I know it’s not in vogue but we should stay out where we are not wanted.

I Am And I Hope You Are Too

By ATWadmin On May 12th, 2008 at 1:42 pm

‘Britain enjoying the hottest May since 1772′


The Long Orange Veil – Unionism Decayed – A Yank’s Review

By ATWadmin On May 12th, 2008 at 10:01 am

Unionism Decayed is essential reading for an outsider interested in Northern Ireland.  It is well written, but not a historical work and doesn’t pretend to be a balanced discussion of the issues.  However, it does provide a window into the mind of a unionist, and such an opportunity is very rare on American shores.   The book is an attempt, like that of a salmon, is to swim against the rushing tide of what the author would call appeasement.  Mr. Vance is in a minority opinion, and that certainly will not stop him from arguing against what he sees is the decay ofthe Unionist political movement.     

The book offers real grievances held by the unionist community.  Mr. Vance notes correctly and often personally of the atrocities committed by the modern day IRA,  the double standard of media in the UK, the unapologetic opportunism exhibited by Sinn Fein, and the duplicity of many politicians.  To his credit he never excuses loyalist paramilitary groups, and condemns their acts with obvious sincerity.

The author mentions but does not dwell upon the unrequited love that exists between Unionists in Northern Irealnd and, ahem, the mainland.  The two main parties in the UK have their foolish moments, but neither is so self-destructive as to seriously attempt to organize in the tribal enclave that is Northern Ireland.  Unionism is the red headed (not red handed) stepchild that loves its mother, but doesn’t really find that love returned.

Absent at times from the work, which seems at times stream of conscious cynicism, is the Vance wit known to readers of ATW.  One suspects the topic and the opportunity are too heartfelt for the author.  A shame, as humour deployed in a judicious manner can be very persuasive.  But the author is on a mission, and perhaps his tone is the correct one.

We meet politicians, large and small.  Most are dispatched as undeserving, unintelligent and unprincipled.  Suprise!  Mr. Vance was never a main player on the political stage, and his encounters with some of the movers and shakers reads like someone who got front row seats at a concert.  A nice chance to see Trimble and Paisley up close and personal, but little chance to engage them directly on the issues.   The heavyweights of the Unionist community come in for the strongest drubbing, disappointment being an understatement.  

The author sees the claim of the nationalist community as ludicrous, which is a difficult position to start from when a united Ireland has been and is the hope of millions of people.   The course of Irish History is left unexamined, and perhaps wisely so, as an objective analysis would undermine the work.  Also, the conflict is such that people will disagree as strongly over something that happened centuires ago as they would over something that happened yesterday.  The eternal irony of Unionist insistence on majority rule, which of course favors their position, is that it is based on one of history’s great gerrymandering moments in which their majority was created.  A necessary moment for the creation of the Republic, but too often played down by the Unionist Community and hinders their understanding of their opposition.

The book is too coy in describing the Orange Order and its parades.  One thing the Orange Parade involving Drumcree was not, and that is a simple attempt to memorialize World War I dead.  The Orange Parades have always involved triumphal in your face intimidation of the Catholic population, and it serves neither history or the author’s arguments to pretend otherwise.  Another issue I have is the failure to give credit where it is due in temrs of the actual peace.  True, the IRA and its hooligan element have never really gone away.  But they have been placed in check, the level of violence has gone down and there is a hope for the future that never existed before.

Too often, Irish-Americans heard one side of the story, and too often many in the Irish-American community held a view of the IRA that ranged from naive to morally complicit.  One of Mr. Vance’s great accomplishments is to point out the details of the bombings, shootings and attacks, so it reads more like a human account with real victims, instead of an impersonal news item.  It is important to read works that set forth another view, especially on Northern Ireland, where so many enter the debate and never listen.  The Unionists are not going away.  Their homes and heritage are there.  They have a right to their opinion and a right to seek to maintain what to them is the proper political state.  Mr. Vance ends with a quote from the Prophet Jeremiah, after writing more like Job.  It is hopeful that the two communities look to their better angels, to develop a future where all might not live in agreement, but at least live in peace.     



By ATWadmin On May 12th, 2008 at 8:39 am

Unionism%20Decayed.jpgJust to let ATW readers know that my new book, "Unionism Decayed" is reviewed in the Newsletter today in the Alex Kane column. If you rush out and buy it, you can check out what Alex has to say about it. Usually the column is on-line so I will link it for readers further afield in due course. It’s an interesting review and all I will say at this stage is that I am glad not to be a pragmatist! Alex is a decent soul and always worth a read – he and I agree on many things though the state of Unionism is not one of them. And talking of reviews – has anyone out there managed to read the book yet, and if so, remember my offer to publish YOUR review also stands!


By ATWadmin On May 12th, 2008 at 8:05 am

Shock horror – house prices in Northern Ireland are falling and will continue to do so for some time!

It’s called the free market and it is what happens when supply exceeds demand. Too many overpriced properties, too expensive mortgages, increasing taxation, rising energy prices – I  mean who would have guessed this would happen?

Everywhere I look in Northern Ireland there are new houses and apartments going up. Some of this is entirely speculative, as property developers try to guess which way the market is going. Well folks, the market is going down for a while and that’s the unpalatable truth that the political class and those with a vested interest in sustaining the property bubble (two groups not entirely unconnected btw…ahem) are going to have to face. In the final analysis, the market prevails. I reckon there will be some great bargains around in about 12 months time – who knows, I might even buy one then! But first, the heat has to subside…


By ATWadmin On May 12th, 2008 at 7:50 am

It’s a fruity disaster! Millions of pounds worth of soft fruit and vegetables are likely to be left to rot in fields this summer because of a shortage of foreign pickers caused by the falling value of the pound and new restrictions on the number of seasonal labourers allowed to enter Britain, farmers’ leaders have warned. Oh no! If ONLY we just opened our borders to whoever fancied coming in then this strawberry apoclayse might be averted. 

Listen, this is a faux problem. There are PLENTY of people who can do this work – and guess what? – they already reside in Britain!They are the work-shy welfare parasites. Stop their benefits and hey presto – we will never want for Strawberries again. Now, if only this can be done in time for the Wimbledon fortnight!


By ATWadmin On May 12th, 2008 at 7:34 am

The primary cause of unhappiness in Britain is not lack of material wealth but a loss of faith in God and religion, a group of MPs claims. The authors of a new report argue that if values related to relationships, responsibility, trust, self-esteem and potential – all with their roots in the Judeo-Christian beliefs that once underpinned Western legislative philosophy – were to have greater emphasis in society, everyone’s wellbeing would improve.  I rather agree. Seeking solace and meaning in the temporal rather than the eternal seems odd, to me. It’s not often I find myself agreeing with politicians but I think that just for once, I will say amen to what this lot say. I do understand how easy, how tempting, it is to chase material wealth but some of the best adjusted and nicest people I have ever known lacked any material wealth but exuded a sense of spiritual contentment which I found inspiring.


By ATWadmin On May 12th, 2008 at 7:10 am

Showing the set of priorities that now dominate our judicial and penal system, it is revealed that UK Prison bosses have been instructed to let pagan inmates keep twigs in their cells…to use as wands.

Officers have been told to allow prisoners to collect and decorate the twigs which they need for their rituals. It is the latest in a series of rulings to protect convicts’ rights and ensure equality among different faiths. Followers of other faiths are allowed items such as a prayer mat to allow them to worship. The policy regarding pagans was announced by Justice Reform Minister Maria Eagle in a parliamentary answer.

What more need be said? It’s a magical policy for sure. Prison is increasingly pointless, with the concept of punishment having been ameliorated to the point where it seems invisible. I could tell you what I think we should do with the Pagans twigs but no doubt the PC police would have me under incitement to hatred so I will merely leave that one to your imagination.