Mixed messages on reconcilation?

The Sunday Business Post reports on the launch event of Love Ulster in Larne, which involved both Loyalist Paramilitaries and Robert Saulter, Grand Master of the Orange Order:

The Orange Order’s grand master has consistently refused to enter into negotiations with nationalist residents’ groups over contentious loyalist parades. Saulters has argued that the groups are a “front for terrorism’‘. Saulters said he was unaware of the presence of loyalist paramilitaries at the Larne event and refused to comment further. The leaflet campaign illustrates the crisis of confidence within unionism over anticipated political advances in the North following the IRA’s July statement abandoning its armed campaign.

  • circles

    “Of the 698 Protestants killed during violence in the North, 340 died at the hands of loyalists”.

    Well I guess that puts paid to many claims of the IRA waging a sectarian war (unless of course the were allied with loyalists).

  • Denny Boy

    Mr Saulter is in denial mode.

    This is NEWS?

  • reality check

    the crisis within unionism?Would this be the fact they can’t handle sinn fein be democratically elected as the biggest nationalist party in the six counties and their beloved “culture”is being eroded?Perhaps they feel threatened by 42 pc of the population isn’t protestant despite their efforts to remove all traces of catholicism in 1969?

  • Young Fogey

    Denny Boy beat me to saying “this is news?”

    Mainstream Unionism has always had a tin ear about loyalist paramilitaries. I see little sign of that changing.

  • TAFKABO

    Unionists may well have a tin ear, but that’s nothing compared to the brass neck of some people.

    The IRA make one speech,and suddenly we’re all supposed to act as if they had never existed, not to mention the lack of attention being given to the republicans still in business and trying to carry out mass murder.

  • Denny Boy

    “The IRA make one speech,and suddenly we’re all supposed to act as if they had never existed”

    Well, to be fair they made a number of speeches, but the main thing is they promised to disband. Weapons are being stood down. It’s all going according to schedule, touch wood.

    If you can use whatever influence you might have to try to convince the UVF and the others to do likewise then we’d all be laughing. As it happens they seem to be the chaps holding up progress and souring the well yet again.

  • peteb

    “but the main thing is they promised to disband.”

    You may want to re-read the actual statement.. Denny Boy.

  • Denny Boy

    No, you’re right, Pete. I should have said something like “the IRA as we know it will no longer exist.” The statement said:

    “All Volunteers have been instructed to assist the development of purely political and democratic programmes through exclusively peaceful means. Volunteers must not engage in any other activities whatsoever.”

    “Exclusively peaceful means” does it for me. Now what about those pesky loyalists? Are they going to stop or are they going back to jail?

  • Young Fogey

    Unionists may well have a tin ear, but that’s nothing compared to the brass neck of some people

    A skillful piece of whataboutery TAFKABO. Done like a professional.

  • TAFKABO

    Thanks Fogey, at least my time here on Slugger has taught me something.

    C’mon, be honest, it was a nice turn of phrase, bet you wish you had said it.

    On a serious note, I don’t want to try and dismiss the ongoing sectarian attacks by Loyalists, they disgust me as a human being, and shame me as a unionist, to think that anyone could think they are acting on my behalf by doing such things.
    But I do get the impression that all of nationalism seems to be drunk on the notion that all is rosy in the garden as far as they are concerned, it aint so.

  • bertie

    TAFKABO

    I’m with you!

    I’m not sure what people expect “unionists” to do about “loyalist” thuggery?. There seems to be an accepted notion that they are taking their instructions from us as a “community”. There people are a law unto themselves. If there was something I could do to stop it I would. At the same time, it doesn’t stop me being sick to the stomanch at the prospect of further concessions targetted at republican terrorists (“loyalist” terrorists may also benefit from it as colateral appeasement) such as an amnesty for the otrs

  • Denny Boy

    Bertie, are you in Northern Ireland? I’m not you see, otherwise I’d be able to use some influence, be it lobbying the right people or speaking to those with much more influence than I have.

    When you think about it, we’re talking about a community that taken together amounts to the population of one English city. People know one another, know who’s causing the bother and maybe who can use his/her influence to rein these chaps in.

    And while you’re about it, you could ask the cops to rethink their softly-softly approach. Water cannon after all are not lethal weapons and can be usefully deployed at the beginning of a riot, not when most of the damage is done.

    Some of the taxes I’m paying here in Britain are going towards compensation claims in NI that can easily be avoided. People here are jaded with that senseless nonsense. They know it ain’t the IRA any more. They ain’t stupid.

  • Young Fogey

    C’mon, be honest, it was a nice turn of phrase, bet you wish you had said it.

    Not politically, but I did say I admired the style. I’m planning to add it to my own box of tricks! 😉

    Seriously, I’m sure you and Bertie have no truck with Loyalist paramilitaries; I’m sure you disown them and would like to see them properly tackled. So says just about every Unionist I know.

    However, for the past 100 years or so, mainstream Unionism has quite happily played footsie with violent Loyalist thuggery (Clyde Valley, UVF morphing into B Specials, Burntollet, UWC strike, AIA protests/Third Force, etc., etc.) It still manifests itself today (the PUP being treated more or less as an adjunct of the Ulster Unionist Party in both Belfast City Hall and at Stormont). I don’t see it changing and the Orange Order playing footsie with the UDA is just the latest page in the book.

    So how come, when just about every Unionist I know wants nothing to do with the Loyalist paramilitaries, including just about every member of the two main Unionist parties I know, are their political representatives so happy to play footsie with the UDA and UVF?

    I’m not doubting either of your sincerity – it’s just the solvent between political intent and action always seems to get a wee bit gummed up on this subject.

    Maybe things aren’t all rosy in the garden of Nationalism – but I can’t imagine the situation that occurred at Knocknagoney, where the peelers seemed to happily sub-contract dealing with the LVF to the UVF happening with Republican paramilitaries in any form. So I think the cosiness between Unionist politicians, Loyalist paramilitaries and elements of the state (God, I DO sound like a Shinner here) is a bit more serious for respect for law and order in the country.

  • TAFKABO

    Fogey.

    I find it difficult to disagree with a single thing written in your last post.
    I know that Uninist politicians and the establishment in general has had different attitudes to the different paramiltary groups, though I would also add that this is simply inevitable, given that one set were about destroying the state,and the others about maintaining the state.
    that’s not me excusing things, just trying to put them in context.

    Where does that leave us now that it appears that the main republican group is leaving the stage?

    I don’t know to be honest.

  • Young Fogey

    the others about maintaining the state

    Your mileage, dude, not mine!

    G’night.

  • Young Fogey

    Actually, that was a bit tart… sorry, didn’t mean it to come out that way. I don’t know where we are with the IRA hopefully exiting stage left, but assuming they are then it opens the door for some sort of consensus on the rule of law.

    That means, in my book, if violent Loyalism can’t cease to be violent post haste, then mainstream Unionism cuts its ties with it and supports the full force of the law being brought to bear against both Loyalism and dissident Republicanism. It also means an end to tacit PSNI acceptance of Loyalist paramilitary control over working-class Protestant areas; it also means no whingeing from the Shinners when robust action is taken against Continuity. Actually, all of these things should have happened already; but it makes it easier to bring pressure to bear on them.

    While the IRA aren’t the only paramilitaries on the block, they have the most credibility, the most political support and the most serious military capacity. If they deliver, it is the catalyst for this society to create a non-paramilitary, non-violent, non-gangster future for itself, but only if others take the logical next step.

  • bertie

    Denny/YF

    As it happens I’m in London. Even so, I’m a bit of a compulsive lobbier on all sorts of things. I HAVE (had to use capitals for emphasis – don’t know how to use italics on posts)been in touch with people that I know that have more influence than I, but we get back to the fact that “mainstream unionist” politicians do not have the influence with these people that other people seem to expect. All I can do is to support and encourage them to carry on condemning this activity. As far as I am concerned I am pushing on an open door.

    I contacted the Belfast Telegraph and left a message for Lindy (sorry forgotton surname) to say that I was totally behind her articles condemning the “loyalist” terrorists.

    I was home in Northern Ireland a few weeks ago and I commented on a thread that if there had been a bus going from Enniskillen to Ahoghill looking for Prods/unionist to form a human shield (supposing that the physical layout of Aghoghill facilitated that), [I meant it. Bogexile and Beano volenteered as well. However I did wonder how reassured those RCs in Ahoghill would be at the thought of a busload of Prods decending on them.] I have even recently been on blogs where I have been condemning “loyalist” terrorists and been pulled up on my failure to condemn the IRA (inverse whataboutery)!

    This is not a new departure for me. I have discussed the issue with Gerry Fitt. Years ago I heard Martin Smyth being interviewed after some “loyalist” thuggery (I forget the details) from what was broadcast it sounded like he was justifying it. I rang a friend working in the nub of the UUP to say that I was horrifed that he had not condemned it. I was told that he had but that the press had pressed him further with ore questions and only broadcast that. I have had some experience of the media and could well see it happening.

    I think that this is not the only time that this has happened. There is also a problem that many of us have that we think it should be taken for granted that we want nothing to do with this and I agree that it should, but unfortubately it isn’t. It is also human nature to be a bit sniffy, to say the least, when pressed for condemnation, when we have been victims of IRA terrorism for years. Again I think we have to steel ourselves.

    There is also the problem that we have at the moment concerns about the concessions (inc amnesty) and how to fight those. Its hard to wage a war or several fronts.

    Yet again, there is the issue that this is an enevitable consequence of the Belfast Agreement and how it has empowered and validated these people’s twisted notion of themselves and how we “understand” their struggle. It would be great if we could say to them “terrorism doesn’t pay” we still could but we’d be lying, because it bloody well does! All we can do is say that it is wrong! Probably not terribly presuasive to a group of people with as much of a moral core as the punnet of rotting strawberries that featured in a past Slugger thread.

    Re the love ulster campaign. I too was horrified to read about “loyalist” terrorist involvement and have been in touch with the organisers seeking clarification, because I would not be able to support a campaign involving these people. I was told that they were not invited beyond a call to unionists to come and help and that they had not been involved in producing the newspaper.

    Before the Belfast Agreement, a large unionist/pro-union conference was organised in England, hosted by Friends of the Union, which I was very involved in. When the idea was intially discussed, and consideration given as to who to involve, I was adamant that it would not include these people. I didn’t need to be adamant because that was the concensus amongst us. Apparantly Ervine and co were furious :). Not my main objective but a nice added benefit!

    The point of all this is not that I am somehow unusual, amd therefore deserving of praise for rising above the norms of my tribe and being implacably opposed to this cancer. I have rarely come accross any disagreement on the issue.

    “I’m not doubting either of your sincerity – it’s just the solvent between political intent and action always seems to get a wee bit gummed up on this subject.”

    YF So what else can I/we do? If you’ve any glue thinner I’m all ears!

    Whenever unionists do condemn this it never seems to be enough. Their words are pulled apart to put the least charitable connitations on them and to provide evidence that the comments were insincere.

    I’m annoyed, (not by the last two posts, just frustrated by my impotance [political], it’s late and I should have gone to bed ages ago [I did bit couldn’t sleep]) so I don’t know if this makes sence. I’m sure it can be used as evidence of my bad faith or unionist seige mentality or exagerated sence of victimhood or the hundred and one other character flaws that we unionists have.
    (The last is surely worthy of an acusation of whineing ;).

    Good night John Boy!

  • bertie

    Denny/YF

    As it happens I’m in London. Even so, I’m a bit of a compulsive lobbier on all sorts of things. I HAVE (had to use capitals for emphasis – don’t know how to use italics on posts)been in touch with people that I know that have more influence than I, but we get back to the fact that “mainstream unionist” politicians do not have the influence with these people that other people seem to expect. All I can do is to support and encourage them to carry on condemning this activity. As far as I am concerned I am pushing on an open door.

    I contacted the Belfast Telegraph last week (or maybe the week before) and left a message for Lindy (sorry forgotton surname) to say that I was totally behind her articles condemning the “loyalist” terrorists.

    I was home in Northern Ireland a few weeks ago and I commented on a thread that if there had been a bus going from Enniskillen to Ahoghill looking for Prods/unionist to form a human shield (supposing that the physical layout of Aghoghill facilitated that), [I meant it. Bogexile and Beano volenteered as well. However I did wonder how reassured those RCs in Ahoghill would be at the thought of a busload of Prods decending on them.] I have even recently been on blogs where I have been condemning “loyalist” terrorists and been pulled up on my failure to condemn the IRA (inverse whataboutery)!

    This is not a new departure for me. I have discussed the issue with Gerry Fitt. Years ago I heard Martin Smyth being interviewed after some “loyalist” thuggery (I forget the details) from what was broadcast it sounded like he was justifying it. I rang a friend working in the nub of the UUP to say that I was horrifed that he had not condemned it. I was told that he had but that the press had pressed him further with more questions and only broadcast the answers those. I have had some experience of the media and could well see it happening.

    I think that this is not the only time that this has happened. There is also a problem that many of us have that we think it should be taken for granted that we want nothing to do with this and I agree that it should, but unfortubately it isn’t. It is also human nature to be a bit sniffy, to say the least, when pressed for condemnation, when we have been victims of IRA terrorism for years. Again I think we have to steel ourselves.

    There is also the problem that we have at the moment concerns about the concessions (inc amnesty) and how to fight those. Its hard to wage a war or several fronts.

    Yet again, there is the issue that this is an enevitable consequence of the Belfast Agreement and how it has empowered and validated these people’s twisted notion of themselves and how we “understand” their struggle. It would be great if we could say to them “terrorism doesn’t pay” we still could but we’d be lying, because it bloody well does! All we can do is say that it is wrong! Probably not terribly presuasive to a group of people with as much of a moral core as the punnet of rotting strawberries that featured in a past Slugger thread.

    Re the love ulster campaign. I too was horrified to read about “loyalist” terrorist involvement and have been in touch with the organisers seeking clarification, because I would not be able to support a campaign involving these people. I was told that they were not invited beyond a call to unionists to come and help and that they had not been involved in producing the newspaper.

    Before the Belfast Agreement, a large unionist/pro-union conference was organised in England, hosted by Friends of the Union, which I was very involved in. When the idea was intially discussed, and consideration given as to who to involve, I was adamant that it would not include these people. I didn’t need to be adamant because that was the concensus amongst us. Apparantly Ervine and Co were furious :). Not my main objective but a nice added benefit!

    The point of all this is not that I am somehow unusual, amd therefore deserving of praise for my independance of mind and moral superiority in rising above the norms of my tribe and being implacably opposed to this cancer. I have rarely come accross any disagreement on the issue.

    “I’m not doubting either of your sincerity – it’s just the solvent between political intent and action always seems to get a wee bit gummed up on this subject.”

    YF So what else can I/we do? If you’ve any glue thinner I’m all ears!

    Whenever unionists do condemn this it never seems to be enough. Their words are pulled apart to put the least charitable connotations on them and to provide evidence that the comments were insincere.

    I’m annoyed, (not by the last two posts, just frustrated by my impotance [political], it’s late and I should have gone to bed ages ago [I did but couldn’t sleep]) so I don’t know if this makes sence. I’m sure it can be used as evidence of my bad faith or unionist seige mentality or exagerated sence of victimhood or the hundred and one other character flaws that we unionists have.
    (The last is surely worthy of an acusation of whineing ;).

    Good night John Boy!

  • bertie

    Denny/YF

    As it happens I’m in London. Even so, I’m a bit of a compulsive lobbier on all sorts of things. I HAVE (had to use capitals for emphasis – don’t know how to use italics on posts)been in touch with people that I know that have more influence than I, but we get back to the fact that “mainstream unionist” politicians do not have the influence with these people that other people seem to expect. All I can do is to support and encourage them to carry on condemning this activity. As far as I am concerned I am pushing on an open door.

    I contacted the Belfast Telegraph and left a message for Lindy (sorry forgotton surname) to say that I was totally behind her articles condemning the “loyalist” terrorists.

    I was home in Northern Ireland a few weeks ago and I commented on a thread that if there had been a bus going from Enniskillen to Ahoghill looking for Prods/unionist to form a human shield (supposing that the physical layout of Aghoghill facilitated that), [I meant it. Bogexile and Beano volenteered as well. However I did wonder how reassured those RCs in Ahoghill would be at the thought of a busload of Prods decending on them.] I have even recently been on blogs where I have been condemning “loyalist” terrorists and been pulled up on my failure to condemn the IRA (inverse whataboutery)!

    This is not a new departure for me. I have discussed the issue with Gerry Fitt. Years ago I heard Martin Smyth being interviewed after some “loyalist” thuggery (I forget the details) from what was broadcast it sounded like he was justifying it. I rang a friend working in the nub of the UUP to say that I was horrifed that he had not condemned it. I was told that he had but that the press had pressed him further with ore questions and only broadcast that. I have had some experience of the media and could well see it happening.

    I think that this is not the only time that this has happened. There is also a problem that many of us have that we think it should be taken for granted that we want nothing to do with this and I agree that it should, but unfortubately it isn’t. It is also human nature to be a bit sniffy, to say the least, when pressed for condemnation, when we have been victims of IRA terrorism for years. Again I think we have to steel ourselves.

    There is also the problem that we have at the moment concerns about the concessions (inc amnesty) and how to fight those. Its hard to wage a war or several fronts.

    Yet again, there is the issue that this is an enevitable consequence of the Belfast Agreement and how it has empowered and validated these people’s twisted notion of themselves and how we “understand” their struggle. It would be great if we could say to them “terrorism doesn’t pay” we still could but we’d be lying, because it bloody well does! All we can do is say that it is wrong! Probably not terribly presuasive to a group of people with as much of a moral core as the punnet of rotting strawberries that featured in a past Slugger thread.

    Re the initial thread and the love ulster campaign. I too was horrified to read about “loyalist” terrorist involvement and have been in touch with the organisers seeking clarification, because I would not be able to support a campaign involving these people. I was told that they were not invited beyond a call to unionists to come and help and that they had not been involved in producing the newspaper.

    Before the Belfast Agreement, a large unionist/pro-union conference was organised in England, hosted by Friends of the Union, which I was very involved in. When the idea was intially discussed, and consideration given as to who to involve, I was adamant that it would not include these people. I didn’t need to be adamant because that was the concensus amongst us. Apparantly Ervine and co were furious :). Not my main objective but a nice added benefit!

    The point of all this is not that I am somehow unusual, amd therefore deserving of praise for rising above the norms of my tribe and being implacably opposed to this cancer. I have rarely come accross any disagreement on the issue.

    “I’m not doubting either of your sincerity – it’s just the solvent between political intent and action always seems to get a wee bit gummed up on this subject.”

    YF So what else can I/we do? If you’ve any glue thinner I’m all ears!

    Whenever unionists do condemn this it never seems to be enough. Their words are pulled apart to put the least charitable connitations on them and to provide evidence that the comments were insincere.

    I’m annoyed, (not by the last two posts, just frustrated by my impotance [political], it’s late and I should have gone to bed ages ago [I did bit couldn’t sleep]) so I don’t know if this makes sence. I’m sure it can be used as evidence of my bad faith or unionist seige mentality or exagerated sence of victimhood or the hundred and one other character flaws that we unionists have.
    (The last is surely worthy of an acusation of whineing ;).

    Good night John Boy!

  • bertie

    Denny/YF

    As it happens I’m in London. Even so, I’m a bit of a compulsive lobbier on all sorts of things. I HAVE (had to use capitals for emphasis – don’t know how to use italics on posts)been in touch with people that I know that have more influence than I, but we get back to the fact that “mainstream unionist” politicians do not have the influence with these people that other people seem to expect. All I can do is to support and encourage them to carry on condemning this activity. As far as I am concerned I am pushing on an open door.

    I contacted the Belfast Telegraph and left a message for Lindy (sorry forgotton surname) to say that I was totally behind her articles condemning the “loyalist” terrorists.

    I was home in Northern Ireland a few weeks ago and I commented on a thread that if there had been a bus going from Enniskillen to Ahoghill looking for Prods/unionist to form a human shield (supposing that the physical layout of Aghoghill facilitated that), [I meant it. Bogexile and Beano volenteered as well. However I did wonder how reassured those RCs in Ahoghill would be at the thought of a busload of Prods decending on them.] I have even recently been on blogs where I have been condemning “loyalist” terrorists and been pulled up on my failure to condemn the IRA (inverse whataboutery)!

    This is not a new departure for me. I have discussed the issue with Gerry Fitt. Years ago I heard Martin Smyth being interviewed after some “loyalist” thuggery (I forget the details) from what was broadcast it sounded like he was justifying it. I rang a friend working in the nub of the UUP to say that I was horrifed that he had not condemned it. I was told that he had but that the press had pressed him further with ore questions and only broadcast that. I have had some experience of the media and could well see it happening.

    I think that this is not the only time that this has happened. There is also a problem that many of us have that we think it should be taken for granted that we want nothing to do with this and I agree that it should, but unfortubately it isn’t. It is also human nature to be a bit sniffy, to say the least, when pressed for condemnation, when we have been victims of IRA terrorism for years. Again I think we have to steel ourselves.

    There is also the problem that we have at the moment concerns about the concessions (inc amnesty) and how to fight those. Its hard to wage a war or several fronts.

    Yet again, there is the issue that this is an enevitable consequence of the Belfast Agreement and how it has empowered and validated these people’s twisted notion of themselves and how we “understand” their struggle. It would be great if we could say to them “terrorism doesn’t pay” we still could but we’d be lying, because it bloody well does! All we can do is say that it is wrong! Probably not terribly presuasive to a group of people with as much of a moral core as the punnet of rotting strawberries that featured in a past Slugger thread.

    Re the initial thread and the love ulster campaign. I too was horrified to read about “loyalist” terrorist involvement and have been in touch with the organisers seeking clarification, because I would not be able to support a campaign involving these people. I was told that they were not invited beyond a call to unionists to come and help and that they had not been involved in producing the newspaper.

    Before the Belfast Agreement, a large unionist/pro-union conference was organised in England, hosted by Friends of the Union, which I was very involved in. When the idea was intially discussed, and consideration given as to who to involve, I was adamant that it would not include these people. I didn’t need to be adamant because that was the concensus amongst us. Apparantly Ervine and co were furious :). Not my main objective but a nice added benefit!

    The point of all this is not that I am somehow unusual, amd therefore deserving of praise for rising above the norms of my tribe and being implacably opposed to this cancer. I have rarely come accross any disagreement on the issue.

    “I’m not doubting either of your sincerity – it’s just the solvent between political intent and action always seems to get a wee bit gummed up on this subject.”

    YF So what else can I/we do? If you’ve any glue thinner I’m all ears!

    Whenever unionists do condemn this it never seems to be enough. Their words are pulled apart to put the least charitable connitations on them and to provide evidence that the comments were insincere.

    I’m annoyed, (not by the last two posts, just frustrated by my impotance [political], it’s late and I should have gone to bed ages ago [I did bit couldn’t sleep]) so I don’t know if this makes sence. I’m sure it can be used as evidence of my bad faith or unionist seige mentality or exagerated sence of victimhood or the hundred and one other character flaws that we unionists have.
    (The last is surely worthy of an acusation of whineing ;).

    Good night John Boy!

  • bertie

    Denny/YF

    As it happens I’m in London. Even so, I’m a bit of a compulsive lobbier on all sorts of things. I HAVE (had to use capitals for emphasis – don’t know how to use italics on posts)been in touch with people that I know that have more influence than I, but we get back to the fact that “mainstream unionist” politicians do not have the influence with these people that other people seem to expect. All I can do is to support and encourage them to carry on condemning this activity. As far as I am concerned I am pushing on an open door.

    I contacted the Belfast Telegraph and left a message for Lindy (sorry forgotton surname) to say that I was totally behind her articles condemning the “loyalist” terrorists.

    I was home in Northern Ireland a few weeks ago and I commented on a thread that if there had been a bus going from Enniskillen to Ahoghill looking for Prods/unionist to form a human shield (supposing that the physical layout of Aghoghill facilitated that), [I meant it. Bogexile and Beano volenteered as well. However I did wonder how reassured those RCs in Ahoghill would be at the thought of a busload of Prods decending on them.] I have even recently been on blogs where I have been condemning “loyalist” terrorists and been pulled up on my failure to condemn the IRA (inverse whataboutery)!

    This is not a new departure for me. I have discussed the issue with Gerry Fitt. Years ago I heard Martin Smyth being interviewed after some “loyalist” thuggery (I forget the details) from what was broadcast it sounded like he was justifying it. I rang a friend working in the nub of the UUP to say that I was horrifed that he had not condemned it. I was told that he had but that the press had pressed him further with ore questions and only broadcast that. I have had some experience of the media and could well see it happening.

    I think that this is not the only time that this has happened. There is also a problem that many of us have that we think it should be taken for granted that we want nothing to do with this and I agree that it should, but unfortubately it isn’t. It is also human nature to be a bit sniffy, to say the least, when pressed for condemnation, when we have been victims of IRA terrorism for years. Again I think we have to steel ourselves.

    There is also the problem that we have at the moment concerns about the concessions (inc amnesty) and how to fight those. Its hard to wage a war or several fronts.

    Yet again, there is the issue that this is an enevitable consequence of the Belfast Agreement and how it has empowered and validated these people’s twisted notion of themselves and how we “understand” their struggle. It would be great if we could say to them “terrorism doesn’t pay” we still could but we’d be lying, because it bloody well does! All we can do is say that it is wrong! Probably not terribly presuasive to a group of people with as much of a moral core as the punnet of rotting strawberries that featured in a past Slugger thread.

    Re the initial thread and the love ulster campaign. I too was horrified to read about “loyalist” terrorist involvement and have been in touch with the organisers seeking clarification, because I would not be able to support a campaign involving these people. I was told that they were not invited beyond a call to unionists to come and help and that they had not been involved in producing the newspaper.

    Before the Belfast Agreement, a large unionist/pro-union conference was organised in England, hosted by Friends of the Union, which I was very involved in. When the idea was intially discussed, and consideration given as to who to involve, I was adamant that it would not include these people. I didn’t need to be adamant because that was the concensus amongst us. Apparantly Ervine and co were furious :). Not my main objective but a nice added benefit!

    The point of all this is not that I am somehow unusual, amd therefore deserving of praise for rising above the norms of my tribe and being implacably opposed to this cancer. I have rarely come accross any disagreement on the issue.

    “I’m not doubting either of your sincerity – it’s just the solvent between political intent and action always seems to get a wee bit gummed up on this subject.”

    YF So what else can I/we do? If you’ve any glue thinner I’m all ears!

    Whenever unionists do condemn this it never seems to be enough. Their words are pulled apart to put the least charitable connitations on them and to provide evidence that the comments were insincere.

    I’m annoyed, (not by the last two posts, just frustrated by my impotance [political], it’s late and I should have gone to bed ages ago [I did bit couldn’t sleep]) so I don’t know if this makes sence. I’m sure it can be used as evidence of my bad faith or unionist seige mentality or exagerated sence of victimhood or the hundred and one other character flaws that we unionists have.
    (The last is surely worthy of an acusation of whineing ;).

    Good night John Boy!

  • bertie

    Denny/YF

    As it happens I’m in London. Even so, I’m a bit of a compulsive lobbier on all sorts of things. I HAVE (had to use capitals for emphasis – don’t know how to use italics on posts)been in touch with people that I know that have more influence than I, but we get back to the fact that “mainstream unionist” politicians do not have the influence with these people that other people seem to expect. All I can do is to support and encourage them to carry on condemning this activity. As far as I am concerned I am pushing on an open door.

    I contacted the Belfast Telegraph and left a message for Lindy (sorry forgotton surname) to say that I was totally behind her articles condemning the “loyalist” terrorists.

    I was home in Northern Ireland a few weeks ago and I commented on a thread that if there had been a bus going from Enniskillen to Ahoghill looking for Prods/unionist to form a human shield (supposing that the physical layout of Aghoghill facilitated that), [I meant it. Bogexile and Beano volenteered as well. However I did wonder how reassured those RCs in Ahoghill would be at the thought of a busload of Prods decending on them.] I have even recently been on blogs where I have been condemning “loyalist” terrorists and been pulled up on my failure to condemn the IRA (inverse whataboutery)!

    This is not a new departure for me. I have discussed the issue with Gerry Fitt. Years ago I heard Martin Smyth being interviewed after some “loyalist” thuggery (I forget the details) from what was broadcast it sounded like he was justifying it. I rang a friend working in the nub of the UUP to say that I was horrifed that he had not condemned it. I was told that he had but that the press had pressed him further with ore questions and only broadcast that. I have had some experience of the media and could well see it happening.

    I think that this is not the only time that this has happened. There is also a problem that many of us have that we think it should be taken for granted that we want nothing to do with this and I agree that it should, but unfortubately it isn’t. It is also human nature to be a bit sniffy, to say the least, when pressed for condemnation, when we have been victims of IRA terrorism for years. Again I think we have to steel ourselves.

    There is also the problem that we have at the moment concerns about the concessions (inc amnesty) and how to fight those. Its hard to wage a war or several fronts.

    Yet again, there is the issue that this is an enevitable consequence of the Belfast Agreement and how it has empowered and validated these people’s twisted notion of themselves and how we “understand” their struggle. It would be great if we could say to them “terrorism doesn’t pay” we still could but we’d be lying, because it bloody well does! All we can do is say that it is wrong! Probably not terribly presuasive to a group of people with as much of a moral core as the punnet of rotting strawberries that featured in a past Slugger thread.

    Re the love ulster campaign. I too was horrified to read about “loyalist” terrorist involvement and have been in touch with the organisers seeking clarification, because I would not be able to support a campaign involving these people. I was told that they were not invited beyond a call to unionists to come and help and that they had not been involved in producing the newspaper.

    Before the Belfast Agreement, a large unionist/pro-union conference was organised in England, hosted by Friends of the Union, which I was very involved in. When the idea was intially discussed, and consideration given as to who to involve, I was adamant that it would not include these people. I didn’t need to be adamant because that was the concensus amongst us. Apparantly Ervine and co were furious :). Not my main objective but a nice added benefit!

    The point of all this is not that I am somehow unusual, amd therefore deserving of praise for rising above the norms of my tribe and being implacably opposed to this cancer. I have rarely come accross any disagreement on the issue.

    “I’m not doubting either of your sincerity – it’s just the solvent between political intent and action always seems to get a wee bit gummed up on this subject.”

    YF So what else can I/we do? If you’ve any glue thinner I’m all ears!

    Whenever unionists do condemn this it never seems to be enough. Their words are pulled apart to put the least charitable connitations on them and to provide evidence that the comments were insincere.

    I’m annoyed, (not by your two posts, just frustrated by my impotance [political], it’s late and I should have gone to bed ages ago [I did bit couldn’t sleep]) so I don’t know if this makes sence. I’m sure it can be used as evidence of my bad faith or unionist seige mentality or exagerated sence of victimhood or the hundred and one other character flaws that we unionists have.
    (The last is surely worthy of an acusation of whineing ;).

    Good night John Boy!

  • bertie

    Denny/YF

    As it happens I’m in London. Even so, I’m a bit of a compulsive lobbier on all sorts of things. I HAVE (had to use capitals for emphasis – don’t know how to use italics on posts)been in touch with people that I know that have more influence than I, but we get back to the fact that “mainstream unionist” politicians do not have the influence with these people that other people seem to expect. All I can do is to support and encourage them to carry on condemning this activity. As far as I am concerned I am pushing on an open door.

    I contacted the Belfast Telegraph and left a message for Lindy (sorry forgotton surname) to say that I was totally behind her articles condemning the “loyalist” terrorists.

    I was home in Northern Ireland a few weeks ago and I commented on a thread that if there had been a bus going from Enniskillen to Ahoghill looking for Prods/unionist to form a human shield (supposing that the physical layout of Aghoghill facilitated that), [I meant it. Bogexile and Beano volenteered as well. However I did wonder how reassured those RCs in Ahoghill would be at the thought of a busload of Prods decending on them.] I have even recently been on blogs where I have been condemning “loyalist” terrorists and been pulled up on my failure to condemn the IRA (inverse whataboutery)!

    This is not a new departure for me. I have discussed the issue with Gerry Fitt. Years ago I heard Martin Smyth being interviewed after some “loyalist” thuggery (I forget the details) from what was broadcast it sounded like he was justifying it. I rang a friend working in the nub of the UUP to say that I was horrifed that he had not condemned it. I was told that he had but that the press had pressed him further with ore questions and only broadcast that. I have had some experience of the media and could well see it happening.

    I think that this is not the only time that this has happened. There is also a problem that many of us have that we think it should be taken for granted that we want nothing to do with this and I agree that it should, but unfortubately it isn’t. It is also human nature to be a bit sniffy, to say the least, when pressed for condemnation, when we have been victims of IRA terrorism for years. Again I think we have to steel ourselves.

    There is also the problem that we have at the moment concerns about the concessions (inc amnesty) and how to fight those. Its hard to wage a war or several fronts.

    Yet again, there is the issue that this is an enevitable consequence of the Belfast Agreement and how it has empowered and validated these people’s twisted notion of themselves and how we “understand” their struggle. It would be great if we could say to them “terrorism doesn’t pay” we still could but we’d be lying, because it bloody well does! All we can do is say that it is wrong! Probably not terribly presuasive to a group of people with as much of a moral core as the punnet of rotting strawberries that featured in a past Slugger thread.

    Re the love ulster campaign. I too was horrified to read about “loyalist” terrorist involvement and have been in touch with the organisers seeking clarification, because I would not be able to support a campaign involving these people. I was told that they were not invited beyond a call to unionists to come and help and that they had not been involved in producing the newspaper.

    Before the Belfast Agreement, a large unionist/pro-union conference was organised in England, hosted by Friends of the Union, which I was very involved in. When the idea was intially discussed, and consideration given as to who to involve, I was adamant that it would not include these people. I didn’t need to be adamant because that was the concensus amongst us. Apparantly Ervine and co were furious :). Not my main objective but a nice added benefit!

    The point of all this is not that I am somehow unusual, amd therefore deserving of praise for rising above the norms of my tribe and being implacably opposed to this cancer. I have rarely come accross any disagreement on the issue.

    “I’m not doubting either of your sincerity – it’s just the solvent between political intent and action always seems to get a wee bit gummed up on this subject.”

    YF So what else can I/we do? If you’ve any glue thinner I’m all ears!

    Whenever unionists do condemn this it never seems to be enough. Their words are pulled apart to put the least charitable connitations on them and to provide evidence that the comments were insincere.

    I’m annoyed, (not by your two posts, just frustrated by my impotance [political], it’s late and I should have gone to bed ages ago [I did bit couldn’t sleep]) so I don’t know if this makes sence. I’m sure it can be used as evidence of my bad faith or unionist seige mentality or exagerated sence of victimhood or the hundred and one other character flaws that we unionists have.
    (The last is surely worthy of an acusation of whineing ;).

    Good night John Boy!

  • bertie

    Denny/YF

    As it happens I’m in London. Even so, I’m a bit of a compulsive lobbier on all sorts of things. I HAVE (had to use capitals for emphasis – don’t know how to use italics on posts)been in touch with people that I know that have more influence than I, but we get back to the fact that “mainstream unionist” politicians do not have the influence with these people that other people seem to expect. All I can do is to support and encourage them to carry on condemning this activity. As far as I am concerned I am pushing on an open door.

    I contacted the Belfast Telegraph and left a message for Lindy (sorry forgotton surname) to say that I was totally behind her articles condemning the “loyalist” terrorists.

    I was home in Northern Ireland a few weeks ago and I commented on a thread that if there had been a bus going from Enniskillen to Ahoghill looking for Prods/unionist to form a human shield (supposing that the physical layout of Aghoghill facilitated that), [I meant it. Bogexile and Beano volenteered as well. However I did wonder how reassured those RCs in Ahoghill would be at the thought of a busload of Prods decending on them.] I have even recently been on blogs where I have been condemning “loyalist” terrorists and been pulled up on my failure to condemn the IRA (inverse whataboutery)!

    This is not a new departure for me. I have discussed the issue with Gerry Fitt. Years ago I heard Martin Smyth being interviewed after some “loyalist” thuggery (I forget the details) from what was broadcast it sounded like he was justifying it. I rang a friend working in the nub of the UUP to say that I was horrifed that he had not condemned it. I was told that he had but that the press had pressed him further with ore questions and only broadcast that. I have had some experience of the media and could well see it happening.

    I think that this is not the only time that this has happened. There is also a problem that many of us have that we think it should be taken for granted that we want nothing to do with this and I agree that it should, but unfortubately it isn’t. It is also human nature to be a bit sniffy, to say the least, when pressed for condemnation, when we have been victims of IRA terrorism for years. Again I think we have to steel ourselves.

    There is also the problem that we have at the moment concerns about the concessions (inc amnesty) and how to fight those. Its hard to wage a war or several fronts.

    Yet again, there is the issue that this is an enevitable consequence of the Belfast Agreement and how it has empowered and validated these people’s twisted notion of themselves and how we “understand” their struggle. It would be great if we could say to them “terrorism doesn’t pay” we still could but we’d be lying, because it bloody well does! All we can do is say that it is wrong! Probably not terribly presuasive to a group of people with as much of a moral core as the punnet of rotting strawberries that featured in a past Slugger thread.

    Re the love ulster campaign. I too was horrified to read about “loyalist” terrorist involvement and have been in touch with the organisers seeking clarification, because I would not be able to support a campaign involving these people. I was told that they were not invited beyond a call to unionists to come and help and that they had not been involved in producing the newspaper.

    Before the Belfast Agreement, a large unionist/pro-union conference was organised in England, hosted by Friends of the Union, which I was very involved in. When the idea was intially discussed, and consideration given as to who to involve, I was adamant that it would not include these people. I didn’t need to be adamant because that was the concensus amongst us. Apparantly Ervine and co were furious :). Not my main objective but a nice added benefit!

    The point of all this is not that I am somehow unusual, amd therefore deserving of praise for rising above the norms of my tribe and being implacably opposed to this cancer. I have rarely come accross any disagreement on the issue.

    “I’m not doubting either of your sincerity – it’s just the solvent between political intent and action always seems to get a wee bit gummed up on this subject.”

    YF So what else can I/we do? If you’ve any glue thinner I’m all ears!

    Whenever unionists do condemn this it never seems to be enough. Their words are pulled apart to put the least charitable connitations on them and to provide evidence that the comments were insincere.

    I’m annoyed, (not by your two posts, just frustrated by my impotance [political], it’s late and I should have gone to bed ages ago [I did bit couldn’t sleep]) so I don’t know if this makes sence. I’m sure it can be used as evidence of my bad faith or unionist seige mentality or exagerated sence of victimhood or the hundred and one other character flaws that we unionists have.
    (The last is surely worthy of an acusation of whineing ;).

    Good night John Boy!

  • bertie

    Wrote this last night at about 3 in the morning but there was a problem with posting and I kept getting errors, so I saved the post on word and posted it now.

    Denny/YF

    As it happens I’m in London. Even so, I’m a bit of a compulsive lobbier on all sorts of things. I have been in touch with people that I know that have more influence than I, but we get back to the fact that “mainstream unionist” politicians do not have the influence with these people that other people seem to expect. All I can do is to support and encourage them to carry on condemning this activity. As far as I am concerned I am pushing on an open door.

    I contacted the Belfast Telegraph and left a message for Lindy (sorry forgotten surname) to say that I was totally behind her articles condemning the “loyalist” terrorists.

    I was home in Northern Ireland a few weeks ago and I commented on a thread that if there had been a bus going from Enniskillen to Ahoghill looking for Prods/unionist to form a human shield (supposing that the physical layout of Ahoghill facilitated that), [I meant it. Bogexile and Beano volenteered as well. However I did wonder how reassured those RCs in Ahoghill would be at the thought of a busload of Prods descending on them.] I have even recently been on blogs where I have been condemning “loyalist” terrorists and been pulled up on my failure to condemn the IRA (inverse whataboutery)!

    This is not a new departure for me. I have discussed the issue with Gerry Fitt. Years ago I heard Martin Smyth being interviewed after some “loyalist” thuggery (I forget the details) from what was broadcast it sounded like he was justifying it. I rang a friend working in the nub of the UUP to say that I was horrifed that he had not condemned it. I was told that he had but that the press had pressed him further with ore questions and only broadcast that. I have had some experience of the media and could well see it happening.

    I think that this is not the only time that this has happened. There is also a problem that many of us have that we think it should be taken for granted that we want nothing to do with this and I agree that it should, but unfortunately it isn’t. It is also human nature to be a bit sniffy, to say the least, when pressed for condemnation, when we have been victims of IRA terrorism for years. Again I think we have to steel ourselves.

    There is also the problem that we have at the moment concerns about the concessions (inc amnesty) and how to fight those. Its hard to wage a war or several fronts.

    Yet again, there is the issue that this is an enevitable consequence of the Belfast Agreement and how it has empowered and validated these people’s twisted notion of themselves and how we “understand” their struggle. It would be great if we could say to them “terrorism doesn’t pay” we still could but we’d be lying, because it bloody well does! All we can do is say that it is wrong! Probably not terribly presuasive to a group of people with as much of a moral core as the punnet of rotting strawberries that featured in a past Slugger thread.

    Re the love ulster campaign. I too was horrified to read about “loyalist” terrorist involvement and have been in touch with the organisers seeking clarification, because I would not be able to support a campaign involving these people. I was told that they were not invited beyond a call to unionists to come and help and that they had not been involved in producing the newspaper.

    Before the Belfast Agreement, a large unionist/pro-union conference was organised in England, hosted by Friends of the Union, which I was very involved in. When the idea was intially discussed, and consideration given as to who to involve, I was adamant that it would not include these people. I didn’t need to be adamant because that was the concensus amongst us. Apparantly Ervine and co were furious :). Not my main objective but a nice added benefit!

    The point of all this is not that I am somehow unusual, amd therefore deserving of praise for rising above the norms of my tribe and being implacably opposed to this cancer. I have rarely come accross any disagreement on the issue.

    “I’m not doubting either of your sincerity – it’s just the solvent between political intent and action always seems to get a wee bit gummed up on this subject.”

    YF So what else can I/we do? If you’ve any glue thinner I’m all ears!

    Whenever unionists do condemn this it never seems to be enough. Their words are pulled apart to put the least charitable connitations on them and to provide evidence that the comments were insincere.

    I’m annoyed, (not by your two posts, just frustrated by my impotance [political], it’s late and I should have gone to bed ages ago [I did bit couldn’t sleep]) so I don’t know if this makes sence. I’m sure it can be used as evidence of my bad faith or unionist seige mentality or exagerated sence of victimhood or the hundred and one other character flaws that we unionists have.
    (The last is surely worthy of an acusation of whineing ;).

    Good night John Boy!