I see that IRA godfather Martin McGuinness has attributed Sinn Fein’s electoral success in Ireland, north and south, to the republican hunger strikes of 1981..
The Deputy First Minister was opening a new exhibition in Belfast on the prison protest that saw 10 men starve themselves to death in a demand for political status. Mr McGuinness detailed how the decision to stand hunger strikers for election, including TERRORIST Bobby Sands, who was MP for Fermanagh/South Tyrone when he died, had sparked the republican movement’s shift into electoral politics.
Well, I too remember the so called Hunger Strikes. I remember the violence by Irish republicans, the murders that surrounded them as IRA terrorists starved themselves to death. I was pleased at the time that Margaret Thatcher did not bow down to the Provos, these were NEVER political prisoners, they were vicious terrorist thugs who chose depravity as their preferred weapon when in prison. Outside prison, of course, they chose guns and semtex to make their squalid points.
However I was VERY disappointed to see that Peter Robinson had failed to follow McGuinness to pay tribute to the IRA activists who made it all possible. Why so shy, Peter? You enjoy Martin’s company, you keep the IRA in government, surely you should also have the decency to attend the Hunger Strikers exhibition? Isn’t that the shared future you aspire to? And when the IRA shrine is built at the Maze, perhaps it will be opened by Mr Robinson as a grand gesture towards his Provo pals? As for the rest of us -well, perhaps we will hold a barbeque to remember the boys. Billy Sands – we will never forget you.