Slugger O'Toole

Conversation, politics and stray insights

Was Sunday’s loyalist riot in north Belfast an attempt to ‘regulate by riot’?

Mon 3 September 2012, 3:41pm

So there was riot in north Belfast. What’s new? Well, what’s new is that for the first time in a number of years it was initiated by Loyalists against a Republican parade. In recent years, the traffic has been more or less one way in the opposite direction.

And it seems to have been pretty pre meditated. At 2pm yesterday a crowd of several hundred were seen gathering at the flash point some of them wearing scarves and balaclavas. Not the regulation gear for a political protest.

As the Guardian notes:

The atmosphere in north Belfast has been tense since the previous weekend when loyalists defied a ban on their bands playing sectarian songs as they filed past St Patrick’s church in Donegall Street.

Henry McDonald also reports that up 40 petrol bombs were thrown at police. You simply don’t rustle up that amount of ‘ammunition’ in a ‘spontaneous eruption’ of ‘community spirit’ pretty premeditated. By early reports this morning 26 PSNI officers were injured.

Some are suggesting the UVF (the predominant paramilitary organisation in the area) were behind the riot. We have no confirmation of that, but does seem to have been organised by someone.

The PUP’s Ken Wilkinson was early out of the blocks to explain the riots. Curiously he notes (30 seconds in) that the protest ‘just seemed to escalate’ without offering any explanation for it other than the Parades Commission had not consulted the community of the lower Shankill estate.

Politically motivated rioting is hardly a strange event in north Belfast. Three years ago, the dissident Republican protests at the Orange march kicked off before an Orangeman was within a mile of Ardoyne.

Looked at coldly, this looks like an attempt to game a Parade Commission’s ruling that local activists did not want in their area. Regulation by riot, if you like. If that is what’s at play here, it’s far from clear at this what can be done to deal with it.

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Comments (84)

  1. Even for a Sunday one might have anticipated more TV coverage. Water cannon, 47 PSNI officers injured and just one arrest (surely more to come) and a local PSNI commander who says it was orchestrated and a declared relunctance to say who initiated it.
    The overall feeling has to be that there is an attempt to keep the lid on this.
    In July and August, loyalists behaved badly around St Patricks Church but they are probably calculating that the Covenant Parade…..a key part of the Decade of Centenaries is too important part of narrative NOT to be allowed to occur.
    Clearly the Parades Commission wont want to make a determination but the evidence they have seen in July and August would surely result in a determination which favoured nationalists.
    It is therefore clearly in loyalist interest to “game a Commission ruling” as Mr Fealty rightly puts it.
    With the Covenant Parade later this month the tactic will be to call for all sides to step back, bank the success (as loyalists would see it) of the RBP march and talk (at arms length) with approved local residents.
    No bad behaviour around St Patricks guaranteed. March proceeds.
    Gin and tonics all round.?

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  2. Henry-Joy Commemorative Parade Attacked by Loyalists;
    http://ardoynerepublican.blogspot.co.uk/2012/09/henry-joy-commemorative-parade-attacked.html

    My take on yesterday’s commemorative march and Loyalist attempts to disrupt/prevent it, ironic isn’t it that Henry-Joy McCracken was a dedicated Presbyterian and Republican Advocate…?

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  3. Mick Fealty (profile) says:

    When you see how some of the Republican marchers were goading their protestant neighbours, I would have thought HJ would be spinning in his nearby grave..

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  4. keano10 (profile) says:

    I agree with FJH – local television coverage was abysmal. 23 police officers injured in a riot is surely enough to merit more than the miniscule coverage which was offerred by UTV News and BBCNI. Not for the first time they were caught on the hop at the weekend. They seem to have no contigency measures whatsoever if trouble breaks out on a Saturday or Sunday. Embarrassing stuff…

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  5. Old Mortality (profile) says:

    fitzj horse
    ’47 PSNI officers injured’
    I wouldn’t place much store on that figure. The PSNI’s fondness for sick leave being what it is, that probably means the number of officers who’ll be trying to bag some. A lot of ‘stress cases’ rather than physical injury, I’d imagine.

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  6. Alan N/Ards (profile) says:

    I wonder how Henry Joy would feel about the dedicated Presbyterians who were sent to an early grave by republican killer gangs?

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  7. Mister_Joe (profile) says:

    One of the other threads is titled “We are letting the community manage these “.
    That’s exactly what the marching orders are doing. They are showing no leadership at all and, as someone else remarked, letting the tail wag the dog. If anyone is organizing the protests, they are doing the same – nothing to encourage respect.

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  8. As ArdEoins comment shows, there are self-styled republicans who are also “gaming” and as the PSNI commanders comments shows they are “gaming” also.

    As to “47″ PSNI officers hurt…..I only use the figure as a comparison with previous riots which shows that it was “serious”.
    Local TV will not spoil the “feel good” narrative. But this is REAL Belfast. Titanic and MTV Awards are the exceptions.
    But for those of us always skeptical and downright cynical about the Decade of Centenaries, this not seem to be the “inclusive” nature that people told us about.

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  9. tacapall (profile) says:

    “The PUP’s Ken Wilkinson was early out of the blocks to explain the riots. Curiously he notes (30 seconds in) that the protest ‘just seemed to escalate’ without offering any explanation for it other than the Parades Commission had not consulted the community of the lower Shankill estate.”

    What a load of bull it was all over facebook for loyalists to meet at the KFC on the Shankill Road at one o clock on Sunday the parade does not pass a loyalist area so why should the lower Shankill community be consulted.

    Mick the real question you should ask is how did the UVF get the keys to Clifton Street Orange Order headquarters, if this protest was pre planned like everybody knows it was did the Orange Order know about the pre planned riot that was going to take place.

    Is this issue being used by the UVF to threaten the government over the upcoming supergrass trial concerning leading members of the UVF.

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  10. Mick Fealty (profile) says:

    tac,

    I agree that that is a real question, though I think the larger problem is what’s at the root of the wider destablisation of north Belfast. Seems to me there is a game afoot.

    And it does not look like it is going to end well.

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  11. Mister_Joe (profile) says:

    The really sad thing for me is the number of children involved.
    In Canada, those under 18 are tried in Juvenile Court unless it’s a really serious charge like murder. Records are sealed so that when, for example, kids who made stupid mistakes as we all may have done, apply for a job in later life they don’t have to acknowledge or explain away a criminal conviction.
    Does the same apply in Northern Ireland?

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  12. tacapall (profile) says:

    Mick the loyal orders are being sucked into a game between the UVF over what they would have you believe in simple terms, over what kind of music a band can play and how they behave while passing a Catholic church but in reality getting a quick few more grants off the gravy train and a certain outcome of a trial coming up. This whole issue can be sorted, the parishioners of St Patricks and the local residents have publicly stated they have no wish to get the covenant parade or parades rerouted they just want respect for their church if matters cannot be sorted using that formula then its not about the parade or future parades its about the UVF. Its up the the loyal orders to distance themselves from these people and publicly commit themselves to respecting other peoples places of worship.

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  13. carl marks (profile) says:

    ArdEoin Republican
    Henry-Joy McCracken was a dedicated Presbyterian and Republican Advocate…?
    Yes and he would be disgusted at the type of dinosaurs who are using his Name,
    Do you know that you and Ardoyne unionists posts read like mirror images of each other, just swop a few words about and you could have the same scriptwriter.

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  14. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    The police commander reported that when they went to set up an hour before yesterday’s march began, hundreds of loyalists were already organising. Hardly anything spontaneous.

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  15. Mick Fealty (profile) says:

    Exactly what I’ve reported in the original piece andnowwhat… I have an eye witness report telling me that they were there from 2pm…

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  16. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    I know you did Mick. I should have pointed out that I was referring to Ken Wilkinsons’s nonsense. There is surely something going on and as well as the orders and loyalists, it also includes the DUP and some UUP men. Maybe they’re full of the spirit of 1912 or something?

    I read Newton Emerson’s piece in the Sunday Times and he really had it right about unionism being so out of kilter with every day unionists

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  17. I get the distinct impression that there is an element of politicking going on within the DUP.
    In some respects Nelson McCausland is in the “independent unionist” family tree rather than DUP …he always strikes me as slightly detached from the Party. Not always “on message” with the whole Outreach thing.
    But with Nigel Dodds now sidelined in Westminster, McCausland has emerged as the key DUP figure in North Belfast and probably too important to be re-shuffled to the back benches.

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  18. Red Lion (profile) says:

    Seems to be the first time in a long time that Loyalist Paramilitaries have organised and behaved in this way, ie violence towards nationalism/republicanism, and that is a very worrying development – where’s that going to go?? There will be dissendent republicans after years of activity delighted at having finally got a substantive reaction off loyalism and wondering how to harness it. Not good.

    Most of Loyalist focus in the last few years has been criminality and tormenting of their own community, a fraction of which gets anywhere near the press.

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  19. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    Red Lion

    We had an organised attack by the UVF on nationalists last year in the Short Strand. Funny enough, on both occasions, they went for elderly people’s residences.

    Oh, we also had an organised attack by loyalists on republicans during the queen’s visit in which a man was hospitalised after being hit with either a hammer or hatchet.

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  20. jthree (profile) says:

    Cops laying out the timeline

    http://audioboo.fm/boos/944240-psni-district-commander-for-a-division-supt-george-clarke-tells-stephen-what-happened-last-night

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  21. Red Lion (profile) says:

    and now what

    Yeah i thought of the short strand incident, but felt it different as it seemed to be as much about apower struggle and yer man from East belfast faction wanting to make his name for himself as it was about sectarian rioting – im not trying to take away from the victims trauma from these appalling incidents.

    But this seems to be a greater leap backwards from Loyalism than any other incidents over a right few years.And a greater leap towards confrontation and conflict with republicans /nationalists. Believe me, Loyalist paramilitaries disgust me, as i said in my original post im well aware they have continued to be active

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  22. Mister_Joe (profile) says:

    I was hoping for some words of wisdom from the usual apologists for commenters on the violence and illegal behaviour in that general area of Belfast. But they’re simply just absent. Disappointing.

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  23. Comrade Stalin (profile) says:

    I read Newton Emerson’s piece in the Sunday Times and he really had it right about unionism being so out of kilter with every day unionists

    I respect Newton a great deal but I think he’s on the fence on one particular matter – who exactly unionists are supposed to vote for if they disapprove of the stance taken by their elected representatives.

    The comments from unionist politicians and leading Orange Order figures today are exactly the same as the comments from SF leaders when the IRA was still active. In a nutshell, the incidents are “sad” or “disappointing” but inevitable given the behaviour of “themmuns”, and the conflict will not be solved until “themmuns” give us what we want. In that sense, the OO and the DUP/UUP happily act as the political wing of the UVF.

    It is a strangely ironic day when Martin McGuinness is calling for respect for law and order too. At least someone is there to do it. I do hope we hear from David Ford soon. I think he needs to be on record to point out the hypocrisy of politicians who talk about supporting the police and courts but are found wanting when paramilitaries from their own turf launch a full scale attacak on them.

    Regarding what happened last night, I would hesitate to ascribe any particularly strategic thinking or machiavellian cunning, not least because the loyalists caused most of the damage to their own neighbourhood. I think the UVF and various other elements got around a table after reading about the planned RNU march on Nelson McCausland’s handy internet blog, and said let’s give the fenians a bit of their own medicine by contriving an objection to a march past a church (there are no churches on the route, to my knowledge). I don’t think there are any wider things going on to do with funding or the historical enquiries things or anything like that; I don’t think anything would have happened had the band not chosen to play the sectarian song outside the church on the 12th.

    The “protest” was completely illegal, having not had Parades Commission approval, but there was no way there was any intention that it could be peaceful. The idiotic comments of Ken Wilkinson mirror his equally idiotic comments a year ago when a hundred-strong crowd of loyalists armed with petrol bombs attacked the Markets.

    Unionists were more than happy to demand the disbandment and total disarmament of the IRA. That stance was the right one. It is now time for everyone to demand the disbandment and total disarmament of all of the remaining paramilitary organizations including the UDA and UVF.

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  24. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    Red lion.

    Fair enough another thing yesterday and the Strand have in common is the lack of strong condemnation and use of disingenuous qualification by the DUP.

    Of course, this year went further. Against what almost all commentators said, Mc Causland and Dodds chose to take the loyalist’s line about what happened on the twelfth. Then they, including our regional prime minister, signed to the now famous open letter. Again Dodds and Nelson chose to push the loyalist’s line about last Saturday, hiding behind legal process when challenged by contrary evidence.

    Tonight Nelson chose to play the context card rather than simply Condemn action which was described by a senior member of the Queen’s constabulary as being orchestrated.

    Actually, my greatest fear is that all the above (as mentioned) feeds dissident republican’s “cause” quite nicely as does the DFM’s inability
    or ( possibly calculated) refusal to match his conjoined twin’s part in recent matters

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  25. Comrade Stalin (profile) says:

    I noted a few comments earlier about how Dawn Purvis should have stayed at the helm.

    I think Dawn left because the elements who are now in control of the UVF aren’t interested in giving up their weapons or their organization and wish to continue terrorising their own communities, and this became obvious after the shooting Bobby Moffett in broad daylight, which was a plain show of armed strength. She was powerless to do anything about it.

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  26. tacapall (profile) says:

    Comrade that parade has been taking place for the last 3 years and it applied to the parades commission for permission loyalists didn’t need to read Nelson McCauslands blog to know about it. The issues around St Patricks church can easily be settled by a simple commitment to respect the church and im sure is a commitment the Orange Order can hardly refuse even privately however the North Belfast parades issue is being used by the UVF and elements within Unionism for another agenda, the upcoming supergrass trial can not only lead to convictions of leading loyalists from the UVF but expose the extent of collusion and of the activities of RUC special branch in controlling and allowing loyalist terrorists to murder up to a dozen innocent people.

    I find it astonishing that even though Naula O Loan when Police ombudsman found numerous examples of evidence that found that RUC special branch officers allowed loyalist terrorists from the UVF to engage in terrorist activity that included up to 12 murders, after I dont know how many trials of the same UVF men we have heard nothing in open court about special branches involvment in allowing terrorist activity including murder to be committed and covered up

    Invasion of Short Strand by the UVF – Breakdown of the last supergrass trial of UVF members.

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  27. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    Tcapall

    Sorry, haven’t learned to do quotes on ad yet but you mentioned elements of unionism and that is what gets me. I expect shite kickers to kick shite but executive ministers and an MP?

    Transpose someone in the British cabinet putting themselves in such a position

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  28. ayeYerMa (profile) says:

    The media coverage and parades commission attitudes in the last few weeks and years have taught us that instrumental music in a public area is apparently newsworthy of headlines worthy of “outrage” yet violence or positive news is not as worthy. Loyalists simply are following the logical conclusion given by such precedents to Republican action — protest, especially riotous protest, works.

    In an ideal world we could all say “stop all this petty nonsense now”, but in the real pragmatic world such words will do absolutely nothing to change anything. Loyalist protest against all Republican parades is a good tactic, as giving Republicans a taste of their own medicine in this way perhaps will inject some perspective before Republicans/media/do-gooders start trying to escalate trivial issues and stir the pot in a petty manner, rather than simply constructively turning the other cheek as many Loyalists have done up to now.

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  29. In fairness I did hear David Ford condemn it all today but it was all a bit ritualistic and I suspect many of his own Party would like him to go a lot further than he did.
    He got a report from Chief Constable Baggot but seemed far too reluctant to put the blame on the paramilitary organisation which now seems obviously to have orchestrated it all.
    Sinn Féin are culpable too. It is all sweetness and light for eleven months of the year between DUP and SF but a month is given over to shoring up the core vote.
    SF likes …..needs ……the DUP to be strong.
    DUP likes…needs……SF to be strong.

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  30. Mister_Joe (profile) says:

    andnowwhat,

    There is a description at the bottom of the page in “Using the site” on how to do links highlighted in red. It’s a bit tricky at first but easy after a few tries.

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  31. Cackle Daily (profile) says:

    .
    AyeYerMa,
    OK, I give up, you’ve stumped me! Could you let us know about some examples of Loyalists ‘turning the other cheek’ recently?

    The rest of your argument reeks of the usual petulant BS (‘Themmuns get eveything, we’ve done naffan!’) but I have to confess I am at a loss on the ‘Loyalists as meek and humble’ types

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  32. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    Joe

    My computer screen is smashed ( a mystery, apparently) and I’m using the wee girl’s ( prime suspect ) iPad. I’m a quadriplegic so I’m having issue just posting. I Normally use Dragon Dictate but I can’t with this.

    That said, I appreciate what you said and will give it a go. Thank you

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  33. Mister_Joe (profile) says:

    andnowwhat,

    Sorry to hear about your disability.
    My wife uses Dragon Speaking Naturally, maybe a different name for Dragon Dictate, since she has a reading/writing disability. I didn’t know you can use it to navigate. I’ll tell her to check it out. Thanks.

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  34. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    Yep joe

    I used to teach people with ABI and spinal injuries to use Dragon to do everything. Actually, I prefer older versions for versatility.

    My injury was just turning over a page to reveal its time for a new chapter. No biggie k

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  35. Mister_Joe (profile) says:

    andnowwhat,

    That’s a great positive attitude. I admire you.

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  36. BluesJazz (profile) black spot says:

    From the tv (and videos) I didn’t see anything political at all. Just a bunch of (mostly very young) hoods/spides enjoying themselves immensely.

    The PSNI ‘injuries’ can be taken with a pinch of salt, along with their nice overtime bill- I bet they wish this was a weekly occurrence. That’ll be a grand o/t and 4 weeks ‘sick’ recuperating in the Algarve.

    The covenant march will provide another nice wee earner for them. Nice work if you can bet it.

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  37. Mister_Joe (profile) says:

    Dammit; the BBC are reporting that the rioting has resumed in the same area. Glad I don’t live in Denmark Street. All of this needs to be sorted. But won’t be, so long as Robinson and McGuinness continue to simply concentrate on the fiddle practice.

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  38. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    Cheers joe.

    I cheated,I worked 20 odd years teaching people things that helped me with my situation. The reason I have not commented on the Paralympics thread is because I Have a lot to say but the device keeps failing when I try to post it all. Anyway, I’d rather be me than the guy who broke my neck. All these years later, he has not got used to what happened on a silly drunken moMent.

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  39. Mister_Joe (profile) says:

    BluesJazz,

    It’s pretty offensive to say that the police will just pretend to be injured in order to get some sick leave. That young policewoman who had the breeze block dropped on her last year at Ardoyne could easily have died.

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  40. DC (profile) says:

    hope that SF activist is happy with himself for recording the Snoop P Diddy thing :)

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  41. BluesJazz (profile) black spot says:

    Going to be a real exodus from Carrickfergus and Bangor to the Canaries this winter on the overtime bounty from a bunch of wee lads throwing fireworks.

    Sure the mainland taxpayers can well afford it.

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  42. DC (profile) says:

    Trouble can all be tracked backed to the SF activist recording the obvious – a sectarian march and provocation.

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  43. BluesJazz (profile) black spot says:

    Mister Joe

    People here are well aware of how it all works. If the rioting was ‘serious’ in a real way, they’d use the cheaper option of the Army. They don’t get ‘sick’ or overtime. And they’re reliable.

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  44. DC (profile) says:

    Of course he did the right thing, but look where that gets you!

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  45. Comrade Stalin (profile) says:

    ayeYerMa:

    Loyalists simply are following the logical conclusion given by such precedents to Republican action — protest, especially riotous protest, works.

    I am not sure of a scenario where riots have worked for republicans.

    For example, the most serious riots at Ardoyne have not resulted in the banning of parades passing the shops there which is the stated purpose of the rioting elements there.

    In any case, just because someone chooses to riot or cause trouble does not invalidate whatever the issue is. Irrespective of whether republicans behave badly or not, it’s still wrong to abuse a church and violate parades commission determinations in the way that the bands did on two occasions since the 12th. On the other hand, the loyalists and their apologists seem to be more or less suggesting that the rioting yesterday was a mere reciprocation to the objections over what happened near St Patricks.

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  46. aquifer (profile) says:

    The Orange is not fit to say no to hoodlums with pistols, and it seems neither are our ministers.

    It is not OK to petrol bomb and stone public servants.

    The point of the Parades Commission was to avoid the situation where opposing sides could escalate violence to get their way, with the police surrendering to try and keep as much residual ‘public order’ as possible.

    We could be witnessing an attempt to undermine the commission and overwhelm the police, essentially subverting the state, or we could just be watching an inappropriate use of the school holidays.

    If it is subversion, will MI5 be doing some dirty tricks on local government ministers? Hard to imagine them being interested in straight sex though. S&M?

    I suppose all the dogs in the RUC squads are dead now. Pity, I remember dogs working really well against over enthusiastic Paisleyites.

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  47. DC (profile) says:

    @aquifer

    what you are witnessing is ‘political activism’. get your camera out and record sloop john b.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdov2UIjUpY

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  48. DC (profile) says:

    Or maybe this was it – this is what started all of this, an offensive song:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h2GaFlYT9dE

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  49. BluesJazz (profile) black spot says:

    Anyone who thinks the antics of last night were a ‘riot’ must think drinking tea out of a polystyrene cup a crime against humanity. It was a win-win for the PSNI and the wains got a good nights craic before the new school term.
    What were the extent of the ‘injuries’?
    How much property was destroyed?

    Catch a grip. It was a playground squabble. The water cannon seemed popular, can you hire it for childrens birthday parties?

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  50. DC (profile) says:

    Catch a grip. It was a playground squabble. The water cannon seemed popular, can you hire it for childrens birthday parties?

    Nice to find you in the same piss-take mood as me!

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  51. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    Ayeyourma

    It was not beyond living memory that loYalists were indulging I. Serious violence over the Whiterock and Garvaghy Rd marches, riots that included snipers firing at the police http://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=plpp&v=wgWw0SkpM2w

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  52. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    Blue jazz

    Want go explain that to the 100 elderly people who had rioters in the grounds of their homes?

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  53. Mister_Joe (profile) says:

    Perhaps what we post is a reflection of our own personalities; Plato’s Cave and all that.

    On an unrelated note, I hope BluesJazz has gone to bed and is having a pleasant dream about his next trip to sunny Portugal at his employer’s expense.

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  54. Neil (profile) says:

    Did someone say Garvaghy Road?

    http://www.anphoblacht.com/contents/22197

    Reinforced glass saves five children in loyalist arson attack [last night]

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories/july/12/newsid_2500000/2500503.stm

    Three young brothers have been murdered in a loyalist arson attack in Ballymoney, Northern Ireland.

    Two things. The tragic deaths of those three kids in 98 shamed Unionism and Loyalism and spelled the end of the Drumcree madness. They appear to be aiming for the same result again.

    Where the f*ck is the media on this? Disgrace.

    As an afterthought I’d like to express my appreciation for our DFM, never hard to find when there’s a good news story where ones goofy mug can get it’s picture taken.

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  55. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    Just saw on another site that it’s kicking off again. I checked Twitter and it seems it is. Search for Carlisle circus

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  56. andnowwhat (profile) black spot says:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-19472086#?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

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  57. DC (profile) says:

    @andnowwhat

    certainly is the weather, v hot and sticky tonight.

    Optimum rioting weather.

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  58. BluesJazz (profile) black spot says:

    Trebles all round!

    The local militias (community grants, cheques in the post)

    The media (no need for the big cat in Tyrone, much navel gazing tut tutting)

    The RUC (can you feel the sunshine? Easyjet also a winner)

    The only losers, so to speak, are the mainland taxpayers, and since when were they ever taken into account?

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  59. DC (profile) says:

    Wanna dedicate the below song to all rioters of whatever hue – let’s rock this joint:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cr7eBN62l3E

    Thank you and good night

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  60. PeterBrown (profile) says:

    Neil

    Go back to 1981 and telll us the death toll from those riots for a bit of balance….as always neither side should be throwing the first stone on this issue if you want an inappropriate metaphor

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  61. tacapall (profile) says:

    Another night of rioting Peter, its only a matter of time before these manufactured sporadic gatherings of loyalists spring up at other interface areas organised by the same people and when tempers flare and pubic disorder ensues the usual politicians will excuse their actions blaming everyone and anything. It will all end when some concession is given, its just what that concession is, usually for the UVF its money, community grants, investment, housing and judicial concessions after all this is the sick counties and its controlled by Britain, if you believe the judiciary and the judicial process is exempt from political interference then you have been wearing blinkers all your life.

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  62. Bangordub [12.17]
    At least what’s been happening this last month exposes the utter lack of any leadership abilities of Peter Robinson, who along with his sidekick Dodds, stayed silent for six whole weeks since the St Patrick’s church obscenity, and in so doing, condone it and all the OO antics since. Even the Newsletter and the ‘Tele’ [their papers], have called them out on it in clear language. Lawbreaking by unionists is OK as is leaving policemen injured, apparently. This has been a great summer for nationalists as it exposes the two faced attitude of DUP/UUP/TUV on these issues for the world to see.

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  63. Mick Fealty (profile) says:

    tac,

    Way too sophisticated…

    The concession they want is more likely to be something like putting onerous conditions on the Republican march in future.

    Though it took the Ardoyne rioters three years of regularly rioting to have the 4pm curfew put on returning Orange marchers.

    So they may have to wait. Maybe this reducto absurdium will get some movement on policy before then?

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  64. tacapall (profile) says:

    What conditions could the parades commission put on the Henry Joy parade Mick that would be reasonable, logical and even warranted seeing as the parade does not go by any loyalist area or by any Protestant churches unless of course its being suggested turning right at Clifton St Orange hall is the focus of loyalist unease which I think is highly unlikely. It remains to be seen what the final price for ending the UVF orchestrated two fingered gesture to the parades commission and the law and the violence that is threatening to spread will be but im sure its nothing to do with parades.

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  65. Mister_Joe (profile) says:

    I had asked a question earlier about the legal status of children arrested, specifically are there Juvenile Courts and sealed records so that a moment or single night’s silliness didn’t “haunt” the rest of their lives. Nobody answered. Continuing on that theme, is there any legal provision to hold parents responsible for the actions of their children (I know how difficult that can be having had an out of control teenage son back when). And finally, is it legal for some authority to impose a curfew on children even though such a thing could be exceedingly hard to enforce during widespread violence orchestrated by adults.

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  66. tacapall (profile) says:

    Yes Joe we do have Juvenile courts I dont know what way it works with the records though and there is ASBO’s – Anti Social Behaviour Orders that the courts can impose which can impose curfews although thats in Britain I dont know if its in place here.

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  67. The Lodger (profile) black spot says:

    “The concession they want is more likely to be something like putting onerous conditions on the Republican march in future. ”

    Mick,

    That could certainly be part of it though I would imagine it has more to do with firing a warning shot across the bows of the Parades Commission before the Covenant march later this month. As you have pointed out the PC have consistently rewarded republican violence and it seems fairly obvious that the loyalists in this case are demonstrating that they can produce it on tap as well.

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  68. tacapall (profile) says:

    That could certainly be part of it though I would imagine it has more to do with firing a warning shot across the bows of the Parades Commission before the Covenant march later this month. As you have pointed out the PC have consistently rewarded republican violence and it seems fairly obvious that the loyalists in this case are demonstrating that they can produce it on tap as well.

    Obins Street, Garvaghy Road, Springfield Road its not as if using violence to try and get ones way is new to loyalism Lodger. The St Patricks problem can easily be solved and the loyal orders know this so is this Clifton Street flashpoint and the Henry Joy parade more about Ardoyne and a personality clash between two opposing personalities rather than the excuses we’ve heard from Winkie Irvine.

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  69. The Lodger (profile) black spot says:

    Tapacall,

    All of those areas experienced a high degree of republican violence. I think your theories on what is happening here are a bit wide eyed to be frank. It is obvious that the loyalists are demonstrating to the Parades Commission that if they do not wind their necks in re their daft decisions then there will be violence. Republicans in Ardoyne had their violence rewarded with a decision made against the OO. It looks very like loyalists are using exactly the same tactics.

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  70. Zig70 (profile) says:

    It’s more than a warning shot, it’s a blatant threat not to re-route the Covenant march.

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  71. The Lodger (profile) black spot says:

    Zig70,

    Exactly.

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  72. The Lodger (profile) black spot says:

    I would just add that the whole situation really highlights the redundancy of the Parades Commission. The only consistency that they have demonstrated throughout their existence has been their tendency to reward whoever threatened the greatest amount of violence. That policy was always bound to create havoc eventually.

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  73. tacapall (profile) says:

    “All of those areas experienced a high degree of republican violence. I think your theories on what is happening here are a bit wide eyed to be frank. It is obvious that the loyalists are demonstrating to the Parades Commission that if they do not wind their necks in re their daft decisions then there will be violence. Republicans in Ardoyne had their violence rewarded with a decision made against the OO. It looks very like loyalists are using exactly the same tactics.”

    You really do walk about with blinkers on Lodger do you know why that area around Carlisle Circus was considered in the past as being in the murder triangle maybe you should read up about it.

    The parades commission simply told the bands and the lodges to act in a non offensive manner while passing St Patricks Church. I wouldn’t call that as diluting or trying to erode Protestant culture.

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  74. The Lodger (profile) black spot says:

    tapacall,

    You must be wearing blinkers if you think that the murder triangle was a one sided affair. If the people taking part in that parade on Sunday had their way it would be back in vogue yet strangely you are taking their side in this affair.

    I have no problem with people asking bands to act in a non offensive manner whilst passing the chapel in question. I just wonder why they have absolutely nothing to say about attacks on an Orange hall during the republican parade.

    Why is one more reprehensible than the other? Why do you describe the republican parade where this happened as non contentious?

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  75. IJP (profile) says:

    Mick

    The problem, from the Unionist point of view, with the reductio ad absurdum is that it will inevitably penalize Unionists overall, since more parades are by Unionists.

    In other words, if you ended up blocking every parade, Unionists would on average be the losers.

    Why do they never think?!

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  76. The Lodger (profile) black spot says:

    IJP,

    I doubt that they are attempting to block this parade. Though if we follow the logic of Parades Commission rulings they would have very right to do so.

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  77. Zig70 (profile) says:

    Odd situation, with odd post analysis. On the Carrick hill parade the unionists are using Shaggy’s advice, just say ‘it wasn’t me’ brilliant. On the riot it’s because of nats used global economics and post industrialisation along with the loss of jobs for the boys resulting in the Shankil becoming run down. Clever people. There will always be some need to regulate parades. It could go back to the police. But the parades commision will just be replaced by another body that the oo love to hate. That is until they stop listening to Shaggy records and take responsibilty for what results from organising parades, bands, supporters and use of orange halls

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  78. Mick Fealty (profile) says:

    be interested in what you make of Better Together’s new post Zig?

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  79. Brian (profile) says:

    All parades should be banned for a year. That will teach these neanderthals a lesson

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  80. Buster79 (profile) says:

    Republicans decide to hold a parade one year and they think it’s the same thing as Orangemen have done for hundreds of years???? Catch a grip!!
    We all know what this outcome is going to be the republicans are going to say we’ll stop holding parades if you do??
    I’m sorry in fact i’m not this isn’t the same thing!!
    republicans planned this parade to cause trouble this was the reason for it, plain and simple the so called “parades commission” should have banned the republican parade simple!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Double standards it is !! could anyone imagine the “parades commission” allowing an Orange parade that wasn’t an annual event that had the threat of violence??? of course they would have banned it, anyone that has filled an 11bar1 form in will agree with me!!!!
    This is meant to be a Democracy may i ask who the hell voted for this “parades commission” because i didn’t!!
    It is simply a tool to try to downsize the loyal Orders, in fact it has back-fired the Orange ranks are increasing steadily !!!

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  81. Haifish (profile) says:

    Has nobody twigged that the entire Covenant parade will also pass two Roman Catholic churches on the Newtownards Road; St. Matthew’s and St. Joseph’s?
    And in the case of the latter, the parade could well be backed up while accessing Stormont, in which case it may be possible that a band will be at an standstill outside the Ballyhackamore RC church?

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  82. Neil (profile) says:

    republicans planned this parade to cause trouble this was the reason for it, plain and simple the so called “parades commission” should have banned the republican parade simple

    Really? Passed off peacefully last year no problem. But this year those devious fenians managed to get the UVF to riot eh? At least you know who to blame for Loyalists attacking police. Not the people doing the attacking anyway. And the Parades Commission is actually called the Parades Commission.

    Double standards it is !! could anyone imagine the “parades commission” allowing an Orange parade that wasn’t an annual event that had the threat of violence???

    DOUBLE STANDARDS??? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Very good. That was an ironic joke right, coming from the person who wants to ban a single Nationalist parade that passes through Nationalist and shared areas only, while demanding the right to parade through Nationalist areas across the North every single year?

    The HJM parade happened last year, and again this year. So that’s the definition of annual. So we’ll remove that unnecessary qualification from the sentence:

    could anyone imagine the “parades commission” allowing an Orange parade that had the threat of violence???

    Um, what, like in Ardoyne? Yes I can imagine it it happens every year. Bearing in mind here I’m using your method of blaming not the rioters for the violence but the parade that inspired the violence.

    This is meant to be a Democracy may i ask who the hell voted for this “parades commission” because i didn’t!!

    Quite right, but then you didn’t vote for board of INI, or the Victims Commissioners either. You might want to bone up on what a democracy is, but a rule of thumb is that you vote for the politicians, not the employees.

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  83. Neil (profile) says:

    Yeah it’s backfired spectacularly. The PC has cracked down on the Ardoyne parade, and is now likely to impose further sanctions on Orange parades in and around Belfast because of the whole famine song thing. And I hate to break it to ya Buster but the PC’s going nowhere. SF and the DUP are terrified at the thought of losing it and it’s the only show in town.

    You can tell how well you’re doing at talking the PC round to your way of thinking when the only time Loyalists bring it up is to demand it’s disbandment, indulging in the fantasy that anyone’s actually listening to the minority interest, over indulged, ever more expensive Orange Order. The Orange state’s dead and gone Buster. They can’t just demand their way and expect it any more. And their recent actions may swell their ranks (I doubt it), but they’ve most definitely hardened opposition, even from within their own community.

    Yeah, they played a blinder. ROFLMBO.

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  84. Dont Drink Bleach (profile) says:

    Neil:
    But this year those devious fenians managed to get the UVF to riot eh?

    DDB:

    Ass Chief Constable Will Kerr said:

    “…It is not being orchestrated directly by the UVF. We have no evidence that the UVF or any other Loyalist paramilitary group is officially or actively orchestrating this violence…”

    “…We saw some people with connections to Loyalist paramilitaries who were working very hard to quell this…”

    http://eamonnmallie.com/2012/09/assistant-chief-constable-will-kerr/

    Carry on Neil.

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