That speech from different sides of the fence.

Two very different articles on Gerry Adams speech, An Address to the IRA, are provided by the ever excellent Newshound today.

Jim Gibney in the Irish News, Historic speech offers peaceful alternative,in a measured, thoughtful and calm analysis points out that the implications of the speech can only be understood when one considers Gerry Adams background and pedigree. Viewed in this light it becomes more than just another call from a politician for the IRA to go away. While praising the IRA for courage shown in the past, he asks them to make another great contribution, this time to the peace process, for their country.

Suzanne Breen writing in the Sunday Tribune, Charades and choreography, looks at the speech from a Unionist perspective and expresses the scepticism felt by many. Many will agree with her when, using the McCartney murder, she says “Lofty words are often unmatched by events on the ground.” She points out that the people in control of Catholic areas won’t be going away and won’t readily abandon their criminal empires. Somewhat cruelly she ends

The IRA’s business empire will remain intact. Republican ideology might be negotiable but robbery, money-laundering, and other financial scams aren’t.

And those IRA figures on the ground who rule working-class Catholic areas with an iron fist won’t be retiring. They might no longer be targeting the security forces but there will always be other duties for them.

With the wider conflict over, it must be admitted that many nationalists aren’t particularly bothered by the above scenario.It’s only when it affects their family, as the McCartneys discovered, that the reality hits home.

( My emphasis in bold )

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