PATRICK Murphy believes that “Not only is there no longer a peace process nor a political process, there does not appear to be a common linguistic process.” While the IRA doesn’t view even its “wrong” acts as criminal, Murphy asks if the British and Irish Governments are really the best agencies to define the rule of law, given their track records of ‘flexibility’ when it comes to justice. A case of double standards all round?
But then IRA law, like British, Irish and US law, has a rather fluid quality these days.
Thus despite the divergence of language on what constitutes a crime, the three governments and the IRA have one thing in common. All four agree that a crime is what someone else commits, especially if that someone happens to be your political enemy. The worst you or your friends can do is a wrong, particularly when you have what is called a democratic mandate, available for application either instantly or in retrospect.
It is a view which may be inconsistent, it may be morally questionable and even plain wrong. But in all four cases it has been a winning formula at elections, which is why all four will continue to toy with the law. And only the victims and their families will really notice.
What a sad world we live in.