IMC report on UVF/LVF published

So, just to confirm what was already understood, the sixth IMC report has been made public [pdf file], dealing specifically with the UVF and LVF activities during this summer which resulted in the government re-specifying the UVF, although it’s worth remembering that it was a decision that Peter Hain took only after the recent rioting, but not on receiving the IMC report.. before the rioting, – and it’s a decision [and report] that doesn’t include the UDA.

  • Henry94

    Two hours and no comment. IMC reports just aren’t the same when it’s not about the IRA.

  • Richard Dowling

    Mick..

    Many people, especially in the South, haven’t got a clue about
    the alphabet soup that makes up the different strands of
    Loyalist terrorism, resistance and allegiance. Could you (or
    someone with an interest in the subject) give us all a potted
    history of the various groups and, perhaps, their ‘poliical’
    affiliations. UVF, UDA, LVF, UFF, PUP, etc.

    Who’s who in Belfast, Portadown or Derry?

    Which of their leaders were murdered?

    Which are believed to have colluded with the Security Forces in
    the murder of ‘Republicans’?

    And who is believed to have been involved in the Dublin and
    Monaghan bombings?

    This is not an exercise in the blame game, as I sincerely hope
    that you (or someone else) can do exactly the same kind of
    expose for those who want a better insight into the various
    strands of Republicanism , and the collusion of Southern
    politicians with the so-called armed struggle. Many thanks.

  • Robert Keogh

    The IMC is a political tool of the governments – primarily of the British govt. They will trot out whatever formula of words supports the govt(s) agenda of the day.

    The absence of Thomas Devlins murder from the report is disgusting. A 15 year old boy is mudered by unionist paramilitaries but his death doesn’t rate a mention. It looks like the IMC only cares about catholics if the PIRA murders them.

    Watch how the IMC beloved of the unionist political establishment morphs into a detested quango when they endorse the PIRAs ceasefire and decommissioning.

  • WestSideHK

    [Red Card – edited Mod]

  • carl

    Well done the IMC

    Getting paid for telling us all what we already knew.

    Cushy job, or what

  • Denny Boy

    “Watch how the IMC beloved of the unionist political establishment morphs into a detested quango when they endorse the PIRAs ceasefire and decommissioning.”

    You mean … like the policing board? The unionists kept urging the shinners to “come on in, chaps, the water’s fine” until … well, until the PSNI demonstrated to the unionists that “their” old police force was actually evolving into a non-partisan force that could come down equally hard on unionist violence, prompting the unionists to say “On second thoughts, this has grown too hot for us” and leaving the water.

    Dontchajustlove Ulster politics?

  • Paul O

    This just shows how the IMC are in the pocket of the govt – an announcement that the UVF ceasefire was a joke would have caused too much hassle for the govt a few weeks ago. Once hain says it they come out and blame them for 5 murders. Why didnt they say this at the time? This biased quango should go. It serves absolutey no point.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Richard Dowling,
    As a young 20 year old Loyalist who lives in a loyalist area, I am well-placed to give you an “insight” into the main organisations who purport to fight for the cause of Ulster Loyalism. Firstly however, I will paint a picture of why ordinary, decent, law-abiding citizens still choose to join these organisations 11 years after the ceasefires.

    Ever since the ceasefires of 1994, the local media have strived to portray Loyalists as non-educated, delinquent, sectarian thugs. This could not be further from the truth. I am a 2nd year student at the University of Ulster, have 9 GCSE’s and 3 A-Levels on my C.V. at present and am working towards completing my degree. I am proud to be called a Loyalist, and am not alone having an education.

    The British and Irish Government have attempted to criminalize Loyalism whilst paradoxically politicizing the Rafia of Sinn Fein/IRA and bringing them into the mainstream of politics in our wee spot of the United Kingdom. The Assets Recovery Agency is proof of this.
    Parallel to this, the British Government have disbanded the RUC and replaced it with a police force that uses a “softly softly” approach in republican areas but comes onto the Shankill and Albertbridge Roads in West and East Belfast respectively, shouts “Come out ya Orange bastards” and beats the living shite (pardon my language) out of a 70 year old man and kids in their early teens, as just two examples!

    Other factors include the Government’s authorization of the dismantling of watchtowers which previously gave the Protestant people some re-assurance that they were protected from Republican death squads, in areas like South Armagh, the fact that they turned a blind eye to Provo breaches of their ceasefire such as the Northern Bank raid, the murder of Robert McCartney and their collusion with the Continuity IRA and INLA in the hate-filled rioting on the Twelfth at the Ardoyne shops. This contrasted sharply with Hain’s “Mafia” jibes against the UDA and UVF and his specifying of the latter organisation’s ceasefire.

    These are the motivating factors behind the rioting and protests throughout Greater Belfast, County Antrim and North Down. Unemployment and socio-economic deprivation is rife in loyalist areas, that is a fact, but the nonsense I’ve heard equating that to the violence is a red herring, the rebellion against the police was purely political, NOT down to social problems.

  • Henry94

    Concerned Loyalist

    Firstly however, I will paint a picture of why ordinary, decent, law-abiding citizens still choose to join these organisations 11 years after the ceasefires.

    You can’t claim to be law-abiding while joining an illegal organisation.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    In my opinion there should be a trial period where the UDA is be legalised, and if the UVF bring an end to their campaign to smash the LVF, then they should be legalised too. This could lead to the weeding out of undesirable career criminals in both organisations, as the UDA’s membership in particular is made up of MOSTLY decent men and women who don’t want to be associated with drug-dealing and racketeering.

    The LVF on the other hand are an overwhelmingly criminal organisation intent on bringing the loyalist community onto their knees. I don’t agree with what the Uvfers are doing at present, but disbandment is the LVF’s only option. Billy Wright is dead, they’ve lacked leadership ever since and instead of engaging the IRA they are topping up their bank balances through, in particular, drug-dealing.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Typo- no “be” between “is” and “legalised” on first line

  • Richard Dowling

    Thank you for your forthright reply, “Concerned Loyalist”.

    Will return to the subject in the coming weeks.

  • wtf

    Concerned Loyalist

    You present a very one sided view.

    You mentioned that the loyalist community feel let down by the removal of the watchtowers and vulnerable to republican death squads.

    Given that all of the death squads these days are coming from your community and not the republican community, I find this statement to be very disingenuous. How about if we erect watchtowers in your area and watch YOUR every move? then you might get just a glimpse of the other side’s perspective.

    You talk about a blind eye being turned to republican ceasefire breaches, yet how many murders did it take for the loyalist breaches to be recognised?

    You talk about hate filled rioting on the twelfth, but make no mention of the hate filled marchers and their hate filled terrorist hangers on.

    And regarding the motivating factors for rioting, you forgot to mention the deliberate stoking up of tensions by your community leaders, unionist politicians orange and paramility organisations.

    FAO Richard Dowling – if you want a balanced insight, I’d suggest looking to a less biased source than concerned loyalist.

    very disingenuous.

  • Belfastwhite

    CL

    If protestant people want reassurance from watchtowers and barracks then why not rebuild them in protestant areas. I can tell you that it a refreshing sight in Andersonstown without one.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Richard Dowling,
    this is a short analysis for you of the L.V.F.

    Loyalist Volunteer Force (LVF)- Billy Wright and other Mid-Ulster UVF members broke away from the organisation in 1996 to form the LVF, as they were totally opposed to the path the peace-process was taking and the UVF’s support for it. There were other problems, such as personal jealousy between Richard Jameson, a revered UVF gunman and Billy Wright, as to who was the “Top Dog”, the “King Rat”. Another contentious issue was that Wright hated the fact that unlike the UDA for instance, the UVF had a central command on the Shankill and everything went through them. He wanted each brigade are to be more autonomous. Jackie Mahood from Ballysillan in North Belfast was another major defector. He was a prominent part of the PUP delegation that succeeded in persuading the UVF and Red Hand Commando to declare a ceasefire in 1994.
    The LVF have strongholds in the Mid-Ulster towns of Portadown and Lurgan and have smaller numbers in North Belfast, Holywood, Co.Down and Antrim town.
    The LVF have no meaningful political wing and their youth wing is known as the Young Loyalist Volunteers (YLV)

  • Pat, Ardoyne

    After the IMC stating the obvious that these people are murdering scum it was unbelievable to hear the DUPs Dianna Dodds state on the BBC’s Lets Talk programme last night that “Unionist terroists are part and parcel of the fabric of the Loyalist community, and we have to accept that”.

    At the same time as stating the DUP has no problem in accepting the Unionist terrorists she was then able to say they could not accept Sinn Fein into Government and that that was the difference between the paramilitary groups, being In Government.

    Mrs Dodds did seem to forget that the DUP has on numberous occassions voted for the Unionist terrorists to be placed into high office on Belfast City Council and clearly in any resonable persons eyes are the DUP is giving support to the Unionist terrorists.

    Given the number of different “Committee’s” that the DUP and these same active Unionist terrorists sit on it would not be unreasonable for anyone to draw comparisons to certain book on the subject of certain Unionist “Committee”.

    Is it just me or am I being totally unreasonable in demanding that the DUP should NOT be taking part in any “Committee” or giving the air of respectability to terrorist murders in this way?, or is it that the terrorists are giving the DUP street credibility in the Loyalist community?

    The total barefaced hypocracy of the DUP on the issue of not going into Stormont with Sinn Fein whilst still being willing to sit down with people who are out there targetting and murdering members of their own Protestant community is unbelievable.

    Mrs Dodds stated that the DUP received 85% of the votes on the Shankill, yet still wants the world to believe that the Unionist people of the Shankill have no voice and are second class citizens, obviously the people they voted for are not representing them properly!

    Or just maybe at the end of the day the DUP just do not want to be in Government at this moment given the hard decisions that are needed to be taken on the issue of Water Rates, Education and the Civil Service etc. Maybe Trimble was right, that the DUP are not a party of Government but just good at shouting from the sidelines and that this would be seen in time. That time has now arrived.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    wtf,
    Was my analysis of the LVF fair enough? I don’t feel it has a bias towards or supports them in any way…

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Pat,
    What committees are you referring to? I believe you have seen recent news coverage highlighting the fact that they sit on the North and West Belfast Parades FORUM with the UDA, UVF and RHC and are now jumping onto the “look at the DUP, sure they’re doin’ the same thing as the Shinners”.
    There’s a difference between Sinn Fein/IRA having dual membership cards and the DUP engaging in dialogue with loyalist organisations to work towards averting trouble on the ground, at contentious parades.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Should say “bandwagon” after “Shinners” on fourth line

  • wtf

    CL

    yes that seems objective enough.

    It just p*sses me off when loyalists try to blame the disgusting behaviour currently going on in their communities on “concessions” to republicans.

    The fact is that republicanism has moved into peaceful mode, there is no longer a need for watchtowers and RIR. Their removal does not represent erosion of unionist culture in preference of nationalism. And neither does the re-routing of sectarian parades away from where they are not welcome.

    Unionism and Loyalism need to accept these basic facts and start taking responsibility for dealing with the barbarity within their own communities.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    “wtf”,
    You don’t understand the Protestant/Loyalist people. Deeds and actions, not words, are needed to persuade the loyalist community that “republicanism has moved into peaceful mode”.

    Another point. They are not “sectarian parades” as you ignorantly refer to them as, but a celebration of our culture and heritage. The Whiterock parade has been an annual event since the 1950’s and on many occasions parades are organised to commemorate the deaths of men and women killed by Republican murder gangs, or to remember the men and women who died at the Somme in the First World War, in order to maintain our civil and religious liberties-how can that be viewed as sectarian?

  • wtf

    CL

    you are being disingenuous again.

    “Deeds and Actions” or rather their lack of over the last number of years, have clearly demonstrated that the down scaling of security is justified and indeed required.

    I do not wish to disrespect your culture and heritage, but your assertion of these purely virtuous motivations behind the parades and your incredulity as to how the parades could be viewed as sectarian is laughable to be honest.

    You, I and the cat in the street know that reality is much different.

  • Richard Dowling

    That little potted history of the LVF was a gem, “Concerned
    Loyalist”. I’ve read a lot worse assessments and presentations.

  • tra g

    “The Whiterock parade has been an annual event since the 1950’s and on many occasions parades are organised to commemorate the deaths of men and women killed by Republican murder gangs”

    Or to commemorate uvf killers like Brian Robinson.

    Why do the orange order commemorate a sectarian uvf killer, cl ?

    “how can that be viewed as sectarian?”

    For the above reason.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Firstly however, I will paint a picture of why ordinary, decent, law-abiding citizens still choose to join these organisations 11 years after the ceasefires.

    Loyalist organizations have existed for decades, they did not suddenly spring out of the woodwork. Why would ordinary decent people join a gang of drug dealers and thugs ? According to the RUC back in the late 90s, loyalist organizations were responsible for over 70% of all NI’s illegal drug traffic.

    Ever since the ceasefires of 1994, the local media have strived to portray Loyalists as non-educated, delinquent, sectarian thugs. This could not be further from the truth. I am a 2nd year student at the University of Ulster, have 9 GCSE’s and 3 A-Levels on my C.V. at present and am working towards completing my degree. I am proud to be called a Loyalist, and am not alone having an education.

    What are you loyal to ?

    parallel to this, the British Government have disbanded the RUC and replaced it with a police force that uses a “softly softly” approach in republican areas but comes onto the Shankill and Albertbridge Roads in West and East Belfast respectively, shouts “Come out ya Orange bastards” and beats the living shite (pardon my language) out of a 70 year old man and kids in their early teens, as just two examples!

    Did they make complaints to the Police Ombudsman ? Is there any kind of source for this little factoid at all ?

    During Drumcree rioting in 1997 an RUC officer was killed by a loyalist who threw a blast bomb at him. If this is somehow related to the “disbandment” of the RUC, can you explain why loyalists were attacking the police before there were any changes made ?
    “Other factors include the Government’s authorization of the dismantling of watchtowers which previously gave the Protestant people some re-assurance that they were protected from Republican death squads,”

    How did watchtowers in South Armagh protect the people in the Shankill from the people in the Falls ?

    There’s a difference between Sinn Fein/IRA having dual membership cards and the DUP engaging in dialogue with loyalist organisations to work towards averting trouble on the ground, at contentious parades.

    Can you explain what that difference is ?

    You don’t understand the Protestant/Loyalist people. Deeds and actions, not words, are needed to persuade the loyalist community that “republicanism has moved into peaceful mode”.

    Precisely what deeds and actions do you require ?

    Given that you are justifying a violent reaction from loyalists to essentially peaceful political reforms, can you explain why you think you are in a position to demand non-violence from anyone else ?

  • Comrade Stalin

    Rereading Concerned Loyalists’ comments, it’s like trying to understand a guy frantically yelling at you in Chinese. Clearly there’s something wrong, but the words coming out don’t give any clue as to what the issue is.

    Apparently the rioting was political, not social. What sort of confused mindset makes this point concerning riots where a bus was stopped and a party of churchgoing pensioners were robbed ? Apparently the UDA should be legalized, but yet before republicans can even get a word in “actions not words” are required. Why should the UDA, an organization actively involved in rioting which included attempts to murder police officers, be legalized ?

  • WILLIE

    ITS TIME FOR THE IMC TO LOOK AT THE ROLE OF LOYALIST TERRORISTS AND THEIR SUPPORTERS IN ORANGE MARCHES.

    ITS TIME FOR THE IMC TO LOOK AT THE DUPS RELATIONSHIP WITH LOYALIST TERRORISTS – NOT THEIR VOTING RELATIONSHIP BUT THE DUPS EFFORTS IF ANY TO SECURE DISARMING.

    ITS TIME FOR THE IMC (AND MEDIA HERE)TO STOP USING THE WORD PARAMILITARY – LOYALISTS ARE TERRORISTS, HAVE BEEN AND ALWAYS WILL BE – MURDERING 1100 PEOPLE DURING THE PAST 30 YEARS AND STILL MURDERING CATHOLICS AND PROTESTANTS – SHOOTING AT THE QUEENS LAWFULLY CONSTITUTED POLICE SERVICE AND SOLDIERS HAVE NAILED THAT ONE!

    POST 9/11 AND IRA DISARMING, LOYALIST TERRRORISTS REPRESENT THE BIGGEST THREAT TO NATIONAL SECURITY AND REQUIRE THE SAME PRIORITY AND ATTENTION THAT ISLAMIC TERRORISTS HAVE BEEN GIVEN IN MAINLAND BRITAIN.

  • Richard Dowling

    Willie,

    you’re a capital fellow, I’m sure, but just now you’re generating
    more heat than light. I asked a question. And Concerned
    Loyalist was the only one to take up the challenge. He’s
    certainly given a good account of the LVF’s fracturing,
    especially after the death of Billy Wright.

    Let him speak. And let others speak, if they wish to. But don’t
    cut this ‘blog’ in mid stream. PLEASE>

  • wtf

    eh?

    how is willie cutting this blog?

  • Richard Dowling

    You’re right. He’s not., wtf. He’s a little strident though. Thanks.

  • Richard Dowling

    You’re right. He’s not., wtf. He’s a little strident though. Thanks.

  • dave

    Why does concerned loyalist make no mention of the professionally organised drugs cartel operated from within the command structure of the uvf

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Richard Dowling, i’m running round like a headless chicken getting timetables etc for start of uni term, but when I get half an hour i’ll give you an analysis of the other main loyalist organisations, the UVF,RHC and UDA/UFF.

  • Richard Dowling

    Thanks. Good luck.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Richard Dowling,
    I’ve got a minute now so i’ll give you the low-down on the Red Hand Commando, commonly referred to as simply “The Red Hand” in loyalist quarters.

    Red Hand Commando (RHC)-Formed in Belfast in 1972, by the prominent Loyalist John McKeague and his associates, the RHC were a lot smaller than the other main established loyalist organisations, the Ulster Defence Association (UDA) and Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF). Unlike the other two larger organisations however, their members were concentrated in the Greater Belfast area.

    Not long after their formation the Red Hand Commando became aligned to the UVF. They kept their own command structure but the two organisations worked closely together on operations and common interests. The best way to describe them is as the UVF’s “satellite” organisation, or as a “force within a force”.

    In recent years the organisation has been accused of being heavily involved with drugs, which came to a head with the RHC’s murder of the LVF drug-dealer Stephen Warnock, widely believed to be carried out by one of it’s leaders, Jim “Jonty” Johnston. The LVF avenged the murder of their “brigadier” by shooting dead Johnston at his home in the affluent, normally violence-free Crawfordsburn area.

    The Progressive Unionist Party (PUP) and Young Citizen Volunteers (YCV), as with the UVF, are the organisation’s political and youth wings respectively. After serving their time in the YCV, each individual person has a choice of joining “The Red Hand” or the UVF, normally choosing the organisation strongest in his/her area.

    The organisation’s motto is “Lambh Dearg”…”Ulster To Victory”

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Again, for Richard Dowling and other interested parties, a brief analysis of the UVF;

    Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF)-Members and supporters of the modern-day UVF trace the organisation’s formation back to 1912 when Lord Carson formed the UVF to oppose Home Rule with “any means necessary”. In 1914 the beginning of the First World War averted the possibility of Civil War in Ireland between the UVF and the Irish Volunteers. The UVF decided to join the British Army and fight in the war against a “greater enemy”. They were incorporated into the 36th (Ulster) Division, with thousand dying at the Battle of the Somme, 1st July 1914.

    I believe it is more accurate however, to trace the modern-day UVF’s roots back to 1966, rather than 1912, when the UVF name was given to a loyalist organisation formed in the Shankill area of West Belfast by, amongst others, Augustus “Gusty” Spence.

    Contrasting sharply with the latterly formed UDA, the UVF did not seek mass membership, but instead chose it’s members carefully, styling itself as an “elite” organisation. Having said that it is still the second largest paramilitary organisation, both Loyalist and Republican, in Northern Ireland with it’s membership somewhere between 5,000-10,000. It is strongest in working-class areas of Greater Belfast,with strongholds such as Mount Vernon in the North of the city, but is also strong in other predominantly Protestant/Unionist provincial towns such as Coleraine, Ballymena, Larne and Carrickfergus.

    The recent UVF/LVF feuds are a product of the hatred and personal animosity felt between the two organisations and it’s members since the 1996 expulsion of Billy Wright and his subsequent formation of the rival splinter group, the LVF. There is no obvious solution to solving the problems between the two organisations.

    The UVF’s political wing is the Progressive Unionist Party (PUP), led by the ex-UVF prisoner David Ervine and it’s youth wing is the Young Citizen Volunteers (YCV).

    The organisation’s motto is “For God And Ulster”.

  • Richard Dowling

    I have been listening to the news conference on Provisional IRA
    decommissioning, Concerned Loyalist. Will get back to you on
    your analysis of the Red Hand Commandos and UVF Loyalist
    organisations later on. Many thanks for your efforts.

  • Concerned Loyalist

    Typo-thousands, not thousand on the penultimate line on the first paragraph

  • Richard Dowling

    ‘A’ plus for that last posting on the UVF, CL.

    What do you think of the IRA’s decommissioning? It has to be
    the only sane way to go, surely.

  • jen

    “with strongholds such as Mount Vernon”

    The drug problem in Mount Vernon has reached epidemic proportions according to local residents.

    Yhe uvf have children as young as 12 out on the street corners selling drugs in exchange for joints.

    Its organisations like the uvf who are poisoning our children for their own benefit.

    ‘For God And Ulster’ Don’t make me laugh.

    ‘For Drugs And Ulster’ would be a more fitting motto.

  • Richard Dowling

    [ ‘scooped from Wikipedia — the free internet Encyclopedia]

    ….. UDA …. [ cover name: UFF ]

    The Ulster Defence Association (UDA) is a Loyalist paramilitary
    organisation — classed as a terrorist group in both Ireland and
    the UK. Founded in 1971, it was legal until Aug 1991.

    The group has been heavily involved in the murder of Catholic
    and Republican CIVILIANS, often (it has been said) with the
    collusion of the Security Forces. It has carried out about 112
    murders —- roughly 7 % as much as the Provisional IRA.

    UDA murals often carried Ulster Independence Flags, and they
    have targeted and killed over twenty of their own supporters,
    and some members of the Police and Army.

    They are believed to ‘have been’ heavily involved in drug
    dealing and racketeering. And have/had (take your pick) links
    with neo-nazi groups in mainland Brittain — such as Combat 18
    — and with Loyalist groups in Scotland.

    The UFF (a cover name for the UDA) murdered the popular
    SDLP member Paddy Devlin in 1973. [ps. Derek Davis gave
    a very nice tribute to Mr Devlin on an RTE Radio spot today ..
    rd ].

    Although officially still on ceasefire, the UDA is believed to be
    behind a campaign of intimidation and arson against news
    agents in Belfast who carry the Sunday World, a tabloid sister
    paper of the Sunday Independent (published in Dublin) which
    has been exposing the darker underbelly of the UFF>

  • Richard Dowling

    Most of the information in the previous posting was gleaned
    from the Wikipedia Encyclopedia, and other internet sources,
    so I hesitate to use the names of individuals who might be
    directly involved in the named organisations. Perhaps, CL or
    another contributor, could fill in the specifics. Thanks again.