There’s an interesting editorial in the Sunday Independent today which reads like an invitation to Sinn Fein to grasp the initiative and move on into full time democratic politics.
Clearly, no one expected the Chief Constable to give evidence that might compromise the PSNI’s own investigation of the crime. Everyone expected him to make a public statement about the biggest single robbery in Northern Ireland’s history, and to identify the prime suspect for that crime. The only surprise was that it took Mr Orde so long to state the obvious, and to hold the IRA responsible.
The credibility rating of the republican movement has never been lower than at present. No one believes Mr Adams when he denies his IRA past. No one accepts his assertion that the IRA does not engage in criminal activity, and few will take his word that the IRA was not involved in this latest bank robbery.
The Independent Monitoring Commission (IMC) report has set out in some detail in a series of reports the scale of IRA criminal activities: armed robbery, cigarette smuggling, punishment beatings, and the exiling of individuals from their homes. And, in its latest report, last November, the IMC saw “no signs” that the IRA was winding down its operations.
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty