Step back and pause, Bertie, before you say anything else

While our august media interpret Bertie Ahern’s statement to the Dáil as Arms photo reasonable: BBC, and Ahern confirms support for photos: UTV, it’s more a case of picking out isolated lines from a rambling statement that glosses over many of the outstanding issues while leaving future wriggle room for the Taioseach. One remark stands out, “it is a good idea for everyone to step back for a moment and to pause.” – perhaps you should have followed your own advice, Bertie?

  • Keith M

    Poor Bertie is having a nightmare on this if the reports I’m following from down here are to be believed. The McCabe releases went down very badly with the public and since last week Bertie has suffered from repeated bursts of foot in mouth disease on the whole issue of photographic evidence. Meanwhile McDowell is playing the far more important issue of the long-term criminal activities of SF/IRA for all it’s worth.

    SF/IRA have put themselves out a limb and should be left there for a little while to think about the consequences of stopping photos being published. It’s up to THEM to come up with a solution which is acceptable to the governments and to unionists. If they don’t do that within a set period, it’s time to move on without them. This would allow the others to work the new agreement without having the unsavoury issues like the McCabe killers.

  • ShayPaul

    Well Keith M please point out how the others will work the agreement without SF.

    Seems to me you are rather missing the point ….

  • willowfield

    If they don’t do that within a set period, it’s time to move on without them.

    That’s exactly what Trimble used to say.

    The DUP is in the same position as Trimble was, doing and saying the same things.

  • Davros

    Shay – it must be possible – after all SF were saying it was time to move on without the DUP 😉

  • aquifer

    Bertie is documenting lots of small steps by all, and anyone who stages a stumble risks being left alone in the mud. Call it pedestrian, but my estimation of the man has risen. He met the DUP for the first time on political matters a year ago and is dealing with matters openly and realistically, rather than mouthing a sectarian separatist line. Pity it took Paisley’s chafing to make his politics all-irish and really republican.

  • AW

    Anyone know of progress on FF (or any other Southern Party) organising here? Any progress with the SDLP?

  • cg

    “progress with the SDLP”

    The words “progress” and “SDLP” in the same sentance, now I know you’re having a laugh. 😉

  • Davros

    Wotcher fellow student! Shouldn’t you be out rampaging at this time of the morning or is that in poor taste ? 😉

  • Keith M

    Willowfield “The DUP is in the same position as Trimble was, doing and saying the same things.”. There’s a HUGE difference. The DUP have the majority of Unionists behind them (something Trimble never had after signing the 1998 agreement), the two governments agree that what the DUP are looking for (photographic evidence) is reasonable as do the SDLP. For the first time the entire focus is on SF/IRA. That spotlight must not be dimmed by backsliding by the governments, SDLP cowardice or UUP resentment.

  • willowfield

    Keith M, “the two governments” always “agreed” that what Trimble was asking for was reasonable too.

    But experience should tell you how much trust to put in “the two governments”.

    You really think the Provos are going to back down? Or, if they do, what’s the next side-deal concession that’s going to be given to them?