Policing drama

No doubt we will become very familiar with the face voice and name of the new Chief Constable, Hugh Orde. He is now installed at the head of the PSNI, and the papers are full of it, here, here, here, and here (registration needed).

I heard him on BBC Radio 4 this morning, and his line that ‘Paramilitaries are no different to gangsters, seemed reminiscent of the hard line taken by Roy Mason, and subsequently taken up by Tories in their face off with the Republican movement that culminated in the Hunger Strikes of 1981. Let’s hope that taken with other more substantive shifts in the political arena, such an approach will allow NI to arrive at an entirely different destination.