Woodward: IRA still ‘clean’

That’s the latest from Shawn Woodward – (you were right Henry, I couldn’t resist it).

  • Pete Baker

    Two points to note on the BBC version of this story, Mick.

    1) The official press release from the NIO makes no mention of this particular aspect of the story, which the BBC highlighted- press release here

    2) The Press Association report carries Woodward’s remarks in greater detail – IRA not sanctioning fuel smuggling, says Minister – including these comments –

    “(But) we have got to be cautious about saying it`s still being run by the IRA. It`s being run by people who have been involved historically with paramilitary organisations. That`s what we know.[added emphasis]

    The IRA have made it clear they have given up criminality. There`s a lot of evidence to support that.

    “That doesn`t mean to say there aren`t individuals out there on both sides of the equation who may be involved in it. But that doesn`t mean those organisations are involved in it.”

  • seabhac siulach

    Woodward says that the IRA is ‘no longer involved in crime’

    If their British overlord is happy with the IRA’s actions then why not Unionists themselves? Or do they not even trust those that they choose to have ruling them? What is it, boys?

    The IRA have recognised the principle of consent, agreed to sit in Stormont, decommissioned their weapons, ended all revolutionary ‘crime’ (robberies , for funding, etc.)

    They have jumped through all these hoops, some more significant than others. The ball is now in the DUPs court, although there is minimum pressure being brought on them to engage by those in politics, the media or elsewhere. Where is the equivalent movement from the Unionist side? Do people enjoy the sense of drift?

    So, unionists, will you do the minimum and just talk to the other side? Ta’
    You never know, it might make a bit of difference in terms of, oh, those little things, like the local economy, schools, councils, roads, policing, etc., etc.

  • SS, isn’t Sinn Fein considering a challenge to the legal status of the IMC?

  • Pete Baker

    They’ve already presented the paper work at the High Court in London, Mick.. there’s a thread somewhere on it..

  • Pete Baker
  • seabhac siulach


    Sinn Fein are challenging the IMC in the High Court in London. Gerry Adams has written about it in the latest issue of ‘The Village’, Vincent Browne’s publication. As Mr. Adams put it, Sinn Fein is not against monitoring of ceasefires, etc., as laid out in the GFA. However, it is specifically against the IMC, being made up as it is of unelected and unaccountable individuals who do not have to provide proof of their Delphic utterances…
    Its membership, of former politicians, policemen and civil servants hardly makes it independent from ‘the establishment’.
    My opinion is that Sinn Fein are challenging the IMC in the High Court from a point of principle. An unelected, non-independent body should not be allowed to hold up political progress (on any side). This should perhaps also be of interest to loyalist groups, or in fact to all democrats!
    That the IRA is not against properly mandated independent monitoring bodies, however, can be evidenced from their willingness to engage with the Decommissioning Body, made up of truly independent figures. This point is rarely made…

    It is quite likely, following Mr. Woodwards comments that the IRA will be given a ‘clean bill of health’ from the IMC in January. It is sure, however, to be a bitter and begrudging acceptance and one that probably leaves open further possibilities for Unionists to play games, with an ambiguous phrase or two. Unfortunately, Unionism seems willing to latch onto any piece of fluff at the moment (e.g., Stormontgate) to deflect attention from their own lack of movement as regards talks, etc. I expect the same to be even more true in January when the pressure might (finally) be on them.

    In any case, if the British govt. is happy that the IRA is not now engaged in ‘criminal’ activities, then why wait for the IMC report? That was my point. Political talks should be immediately convened. Or is it that Unionists do not trust the very government in which they invest all their loyalty and need some further (meaningless) proof from a puppet IMC (one set up, appointed and controlled by that same government)? In any case, Unionists are running out of excuses not to engage and their continuing foot-dragging is starting to look ridiculous.

  • Brian Boru

    The IMC should be believed. But the DUP don’t want to believe and don’t want to be convinced. If they continue to stonewall then A: Stop MLA’s pay and B: Give district councils the power to harmonise with the South. Then see what the DUP does.

  • Rev Paisley spoke softly to the camera’s about 12 months ago; commenting on the democratic process, he said as regards SF and the executive:
    “shure they’ve as much right to be there as I have”
    I was impressed because it was the first time he actually spoke and sounded like the Irishman he is.

  • I think the correct term is sanitised.

  • Right carry on today Ian Paisley Jnr has just said:
    “The minister is in some self-imposed denial that only exposes his own weakness in the face of crime.”
    What a laugh!
    The truth is:
    “The MLA is in some self-imposed denial that only exposes his own weakness in the face of reality”

  • Comrade Stalin

    The IMC should be believed.

    Brian, be careful. It is essentially on the IMC’s word that the political process is presently in a deep freeze.

    A: Stop MLA’s pay

    Yes to that ..

    and B: Give district councils the power to harmonise with the South.

    In what way should they “harmonise” ? I’m all in favour of as much North-South co-operation as possible to the mutal benefit of all involved, but republicans are usually looking for something much more than that.