IRA must accept common playing field

Steven King calls for all books to be open: in particular he wants a debate about the status of the IRA’s Green Book, in terms of what it means for members of the wider Republican Movement:

…can there ever again be a negotiation aimed at restoring Stormont where unionists maintain a diplomatic silence about issues like the status of the IRA Green Book?

In negotiation after negotiation, the other participants have preferred to treat republican ideology as an acceptable private fetish.

What Gerry Adams thought about an obscure and complex period of Irish history didn’t seem to matter in the wider scheme of things.

Yet in the last month it has become very clear that the Republican Movement’s self-perception has consequences that matter a great deal to the rest of us.

The failure to secure an IRA commitment last December to the Agreement – rather than to the 1919 Democratic Programme of the First Dail – was brushed aside at the time as nit-picking.

The consequence? The Northern raid.