Mallon: what happened the vision of a peaceful society?

Seamus Mallon makes a brief comeback to hammer home some of the frustration his party feels about the slow progress towards a peaceful society. There’s no mistaking his passion:

In 1994 the ceasefire. Remember it? The vision? The idealism that we all thought was going to come? Ah, broken legs, kneecaps blown off, fellows getting their throats cut. Young fellas being held to ransom every day of the week. Decommissioning – the year 2000. It was going to be great. Two years after the executive was set up. Is it done yet? Is it started yet? It’s this manipulation of people that probably I find the most offensive thing in the type of approach to the political process now.

However it remains to be seen whether this eloquently voiced frustration is enough to convince the voters who previously backed the party to come back into the SDLP fold. Sometimes it pays to concentrate on your own game than get too distracted on what your opponent is or (as in this case) is not doing.

  • middle-class taig

    I remember the enthusiasm generated by the pan-nationalist consensus. I remember the shimmering trophy, which seemed within our grasp, of a policing service embraced by the whole nationalist community. The justice we thought was going to come. Pity some old dogs didn’t hang on in till the end of that fight. Perhaps they now wonder if they let the community down. Maybe they can no longer see the community, so dazzled are they by their own “idealism”….

  • Davros

    To be fair to all the main parties,including SF and the DUP, things are one heck of a lot better in 2005 than they were in 1985.There’s no going back.
    Thank God.

  • middle-class taig

    that’s for certain

  • Mark McGregor

    It is sad to see Seamus so frail, I hope he enjoys his retirement.

    It must be very difficult for men like him and John H to sit aged on the sidelines while the new blood in their party seems unable to prevent its possible end or replacement.

    Loyalty is an admirable quality, Seamus showed it today and eloquently too.

  • Keith M

    What happened, Seeamus? The people were fed up with lectures about how the Belfast Agreement was “Sunningdale for slow learners”, and they wanted to wipe the smug grin off of the faces of those that foisted this intrinsically flawed agreement on them. Come May 6th, it will be game set and match to the slow learners!

  • Jacko

    Davros
    I fail to see how you can give any credit at all to the DUP for things being “one heck of a lot better” than they were.

    Things are better in spite of the DUP, not in the slightest because of them.

  • Alan McDonald

    Keith M,

    As an endlessly curious American I have to ask, what is it that winners actually win when they get “game set and match” in Northern Ireland?

  • PatMcLarnon

    ‘The people were fed up with lectures about how the Belfast Agreement was “Sunningdale for slow learners”, and they wanted to wipe the smug grin off of the faces of those that foisted this intrinsically flawed agreement on them.’

    The ‘people’ voted this ‘intrinsically flawed agreement’ on themselves through the ballot box. Sad that you despise democracy so much.

  • Young Fogey

    As an endlessly curious American I have to ask, what is it that winners actually win when they get “game set and match” in Northern Ireland?

    They get to have drinkies with right-wing American politicians in the White House, of course!

  • Davros

    Long time no see YF !

  • spirit-level

    “Things are better in spite of the DUP, not in the slightest because of them.” Astute Jacko.

    I see Keith M spit-roasted on the rod of his own
    gnarled kebab, by Pat and Alan. He won’t be saying game, set and match again!

  • Moyle rover

    If the SDLP get battered at this election it will be because thier own efforts have been woeful. In Moyle there is not one SDLP poster to be seen anywhere. I heard Danny O Connor on TV tonight saying there were three including him putting up posters for all of East Antrim.
    If all the southern politicians are so keen to back the SDLP why are they not out helping a one man band like Danny instead of posing in places like Derry and Downpatrick.

  • spirit-level

    gnarled rod of his own kebab..that should read 😉

  • A.W,

    Alan McDonald

    As an endlessly curious American I have to ask, what is it that winners actually win when they get “game set and match” in Northern Ireland?

    The way things are going probably the Ashes?

  • peter

    The GFA will be laid to rest on May 6th. It, like Sunningdale before it was seriously flawed. The GFA was presented as a victory somehow for both sides. It was a whitewash and as fallen on its own ambiguity.

    The principle of any new agreement is that N.Ireland is British and will be for the forseable future. There will be some form of voluntary coalition at Stormont which the SDLP can accept or reject. SF will only be invited to participate in any government one year after the IRA disband.

  • peter

    Game,set and match to the DUP. A new fair agreement will follow these elections. The IRA will quickly disband.

    A voluntary coalition will be established at Stormont led by the DUP.

    The secularisation of society will cease and the Lord will again become part of our rule and our daily lives.

  • Chris Gaskin

    Peter

    Dream on!!!

  • Dessertspoon

    It really is a shame that Seamus is only now speaking out against SF. Perhaps if the SDLP had done more of that and not protected them quite so much they wouldn’t be in this position. I’m not saying SF should be excluded before anyone tries to read that in I’m just saying the political bodyguarding has allowed SF to feel they get away with things they shouldn’t have been allowed to and as a result they stolen the SDLPs clothes.

  • borisbarnes

    Are we sure that the troubles cannot return??

    The chances of a working local structure seem even more distant now – what to do???

    Boris

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    “The secularisation of society will cease and the Lord will again become part of our rule and our daily lives.”

    And there you have it folks, the best f**king reason to vote UUP on 5th May. Apathy costs… religous fundaMENTALism costs more!

  • fair_deal

    “what happened the vision of a peaceful society”

    Simple Seamus the ‘Centre-Ground – UUP/SDLP’ that was at the core of the outworkings of the Belfast Agreement didn’t create a successful working partnership as summed up by the non-relationship between the First and Deputy First Minister