Adams: change is happening

The cryptic nature of Gerry Adams’ statements make it difficult to give in any certain connotation. But when he refers to “change happening”, he then catalogues some of the original ‘gains’ under the Belfast Agreement rather than any of the substantive issues, still under dispute:

While considerable time and energy will be devoted in the months ahead to restoring the political institutions it is important that people realise that the situation is not static. Change is happening. The pace may be too slow for us but change is happening incrementally every day. There is a joint Irish/British Secretariat working in Armagh implementing all-Ireland measures across a range of issues. There are co-ordinated major infra-structure projects ongoing. And there is increasing all-Ireland co-operation on health, education, agriculture and other matters.

  • Mick,
    Gerry is under pressure to tell his troops that there are real positives happening, as he prepares them to debate and hopefully accept policing at the Ard Fheis. What he is trying to do is similiar to what Blair did in 1995 to get his party elected.
    Remember clause 4.
    Root and Branch reform.

  • I’m a plant water me

    Is it me or did that not read like a statement you would expect to hear from a British Government minister touring Irish America on a pacifying road trip in the 1980’s

  • seabhac siulach

    spirit-level

    If what you say is true, it is republicans, yet again, who have to compromise on their core principles in order to move things forward…at this rate of ablation of republican principles Provo Sinn Fein will end up as a unionist party before it ever sees the inside of the assembly again. Perhaps some would say that with its recognition of Stormont it is already a unionist party…
    In the absence of some concession or other from the Brits, I do not see Adams being strong enough at the moment (post the Donaldson fiasco) to push any deal like that to the membership. However, Mr Reiss (US special envoy) must know something we don’t when he says that soon all six county political parties will move to back the PSNI. This is worrying. Acceptance of policing is one of the few negotiating cards Sinn Fein has left…are they to throw it away BEFORE negotiations begin?

    Policing should only be discussed as part of the overall package to restore the executive. Sinn Fein voters in the last election did not vote for recognition of the police in the absence of devolved policing powers. To do so would be yet another betrayal (there, I’ve said it!).

  • seabhac,
    I see that negotiating card as negative for SF in the long term. It’s holding up the process.
    In that sense, all the positive policies and proposals SF have to offer are stymied, and won’t get a chance to be debated on in an Assembly. So hard as it is I’d take the plunge and embrace policing in order to open the way.
    Blair took similiar risks in the 1990’s and look he got 3 election victories on the trot.
    Anyway there’s no credible alternative.
    SF need to distance themselves from the sordid nature of the McCartney catastrophe and the Northern Bank Robbery. I see accepting policing as another shackle being removed around SF’s neck in the transformation from Caterpillar to Butterfly. They can do it.

  • Ultonian Scottis American

    Speaking of USA Special Envoy Mitchell Reiss (and slightly OT), this from Madradin Ruad:

    Sinn Féin…has called on the US to rein in anti-Sinn Féin elements within its system.

    Who could they possibly be refering to?

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    ‘Mr Reiss (US special envoy) must know something we don’t when he says that soon all six county political parties will move to back the PSNI.’

    All six county political parties already do back the PSNI.

    On the subject of SF (the only 32 county political party) all Reiss is proving is that he has the ability to read and listen.
    SF have stated for quite some time if the necessary changes are implimented they will call a special Ard Fheis on the subject. Good to see that Reiss is on the ball (not).

  • seabhac siulach

    Pat McLamon

    Reiss was talking to Adams only today. Reiss releases a statement afterwards saying that soon all parties in back the PSNI, meaning, of course, Provo Sinn Fein. Now where did he get that idea? You do not need to be a political scientist to see that Adams must have mentioned to him (in some way) that the present policing arrangements were soon to be accepted by Sinn Fein…
    Is this acceptance by Sinn Fein the trade-off needed to restart the talks, and something demanded (secretly) by both govts.? You would hope that by playing their last card Sinn Fein are getting cast iron assurances that the assembly, once in place again, cannot be arbitrarily suspended like the last time…at the very least…

  • TAFKABO

    I think it would benefit Sinn Fein more in the long run if they were to support the police before negoriations begun, that way there really would be pressure on the unionists to do a deal with them.
    Sinn Fein trying to use support of the police as a bargaining chip would play directly into the hands of negative unionism.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    You do not need to be a political scientist to know that Adams repeated to Reiss what he and other SF personnel have been saying for some time.
    I believe the British Government will soon be bringing forward legislation to meet the SF demands on accountability.
    Once that legislation is satisfactorily in place and the Assembly is sitting to oversee that legislation SF are on record as saying they will then call a special Ard Fheis on policing.

    That has been a public fact for quite some time, if Reiss thinks that is a significant new approach it only confirms that he has little interest in his current post.

  • seabhac siulach

    That garbled sentence of above should of course have been…

    “Reiss releases a statement afterwards saying that soon all parties will move to back the PSNI, meaning, of course, Provo Sinn Fein. “

  • TAFKABO
    You’re right.
    Timetable:
    4th Feb DUP conference ( audio sermon Rev Paisley)
    6th Feb Talks begin
    11th Feb SF Ard Fheis, pass policing
    13th Feb Talks breakthru, SF /DUP handshake.
    14th Feb St.Valentines, hugs and kisses all round.
    15th Feb Full Assembly restored.

    Maybe its all the Jamie Cullum music I’m grooving to 🙂

  • heck

    Pat McLarnon

    If SF back the PSNI/RUC without a transparent resolution of all the collusion issues then I for one will support anyone who runs against them in elections and urge others to do the same.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    heck,

    my position on policing has been aired on this site. SF and the SDLP have settled for too little.
    I was simmply stating that Reiss was trying to flog a horse that was by it’s sell by date.

    On the subject of voting, there are no viable alternatives to either SF or the SDLP for people with a republican or nationalist outlook. A few independents may put themselves forward but by and large they are disaffected individuals on an ego trip.

  • by heck,
    “without a transparent resolution of all the collusion issues” that is a ridiculous attitude.
    Far better to overcome your own resentment.
    ie make fear your enemy, not your friend.

  • spartacus

    the ‘new age’ approach to conflict resolution there, s-l? ‘overcome your own resentment?’

    what exactly are you suggesting?

  • heck

    pat

    I don’t mean anything personal but all I want on the collusion issue is the same thing the american and british governments are demanding of syria. A transparent, international investigation of government involvement in terrorist killings. I will settle for nothing less. You are right there is’nt much alternative but abstentionism is always available.

    Spirit level–what are you saying -that I must accept a police force with serving sectarian killers?

  • martin ingram

    Taf,

    The best post this year.

    Quote”I think it would benefit Sinn Fein more in the long run if they were to support the police before negoriations begun, that way there really would be pressure on the unionists to do a deal with them.
    Sinn Fein trying to use support of the police as a bargaining chip would play directly into the hands of negative unionism”Unquote

    It would certainly wrong foot the DUP and he( Adams) would have to face his demons within at some point anyway.

    Martin

  • heck,
    “what are you saying -that I must accept a police force with serving sectarian killers?”
    That’s exactly the bigoted line the DUP use not to talk to SF, that we’re all terrorists.
    There is a investigation to assess some 3000 deaths in norn iron I understand began last week
    Best to draw a line under it.
    We’re as guilty as they are.
    spartacus
    this new age approach?
    Ingram, said it best when he said “face his own demons”. It just works, change comes from within, the world appears different I’ve tried it.

  • Yoda

    If what you say is true, it is republicans, yet again, who have to compromise on their core principles in order to move things forward…at this rate of ablation of republican principles Provo Sinn Fein will end up as a unionist party before it ever sees the inside of the assembly again. Perhaps some would say that with its recognition of Stormont it is already a unionist party…

    You make an interesting point here: given how much SF have moved, it’s quite interesting to see them get treating as if the are still the exact same party that there were in the 70s and 80s.

    From an a non-shinner’s perspective, there has been a huge sea-change.

  • Kathy_C

    Hi all,

    Gerry Adams’s statement of today,

    “If the Bush admin is to return to the positve role it and Clinton admin played in Irish peace process then anti-Sinn Fein element will have to be reined in”

    I say Gerry Adams and Company is asking the Bush admin to rein in me and my sister……why else is he getting involved with America.

  • Ultonian Scottis American

    Kathy_C:

    LOL

    I have been asking re this myself, but no one cares to reply.

  • as he prepares them to debate and hopefully accept policing at the Ard Fheis

    I am afraid you are wrong on this issues.

    To my knowledge there are no pro-PSNI motions on the Clár. The Ard Chomhairle may have put one in but as it is stated Sinn Féin policy to call a special Ard Fheis to discuss the policing issue I very much doubt it.

    I also doubt if any Cumann or Comhairle Ceantair/Cúige has placed a pro-PSNI motion before the Ard Fheis.

    I do know that there are a few anti-PSNI/pro 32 county police force motions before the Ard Fheis.

    It will be up to the delegates to decide what they do with these issues.

    I would expect the Ard Chomhairle to do what they have done this last couple of years and ask the Ard Fheis not to bind the leaderships hands in relation to policing.

    We shall have to wait until the Ard Fheis to find out the outcome to that one.

  • ialwaysgotohamassoneastersunday

    the sooner the aughnacloys join the psni the better

  • sf/ira will very soon accept the PSNI. We have given the order to all our agents that they need to start the process of acceptance. That is being driven from the top and it won’t take long to happen. Thanks Martin!(and I don’t mean Ingram! lol)

  • Chris,
    SF are paranoid about the PSNI, no trust no confidence. The DUP are paranoid about SF, no trust no confidence. The way forward is to ease each other’s fears and concerns.
    It’s like the unstoppable force, meeting the immovable object.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    spirit-level

    Your equation on who trusts who is too narrow, it is quite clear that there is no trust or confidence between any of the parties.

    The British Government is the organ grinder to the PSNI’s monkey. Surely they also come into the who trusts who equation?

  • martin ingram

    Pat,

    Well lets add Gerry and Martin into the mix, do we trust them?

    Martin

  • Maybe Pat
    I’d accept what you’re saying in the thatcher era, but not anymore. Intend to go a thread called “A fair exchange is no robbery” today over on my site, which picks up and expands these points. See you there?

  • Seano

    “Well lets add Gerry and Martin into the mix, do we trust them?”

    Do Irish Republicans have any real choice?

    There are many Republicans that don’t trust Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness, because they’ve sullied the Republican movement and demoralised it to such a degree that, there really is no choice at the moment.

    We’re to believe that Gerry & Martin are making “progress”, simply because they say so? Most, if not all, of what Gerry & Martin claim as progress and gains, are universal rights and entitlements that should be part of everyones daily life anyway, yet they play them up as great accomplishments, expecting right thinking Republicans to see the “big picture” of their strategy.

  • martin ingram

    Seano,

    I understand you point.

    Quolte”Do Irish Republicans have any real choice?”Unquote

    This is the difficulty we non shinners have? we are told the movement is grass roots driven? so it follows that Adams and McGuinness must have the confidence of the Grass Roots. Or is this not democratic party (SF) more like a two man dictatorship.

    We all have choices some of them are difficult, but we all have them.

    Martin.

  • TAFKABO

    Gerry and Martin have made progress.

    They have managed to convince most republicans that they will not achieve their aims through violence.
    You can argue about them not making many gains per se, but by bringing home the message that violence is counter productive, they have at least set the stage for republicans to focus their efforts on non violent achievements.

    I wouldn’t underestimate just how valuable this could be to the repubican project in years to come.

  • Kathy_C

    Hi all,

    As an American I was annoyed at the arrogance of adams and sf.
    Here we have SF via Adams TELLING
    the US Gov’t …actually Bush to rein in anti-Sinn Fein elements within the US…..

    Maybe adams and company should spend a little time and look up the word “politics’ that they keep saying over and over…

    I guess they haven’t figured it out yet that in ‘politics’ there are other opinions…..
    Bush has to put up with opinions other than his own that effect not only his ratings but the electability of the republican party…yet adams acts more like a cry baby demanding the US president rein in people who speak out against the great and powerful adams/mcguiness/kelly/maskey

    Well, after all sf leadership is implementing plans that are endorsed and wanted by the brits….and Bush OWES blair big time for blairs support in Iraq…maybe adams feels this is a way for bush to pay back blair…rein in any opposition to the SF sell out that exists in the US. Yeah…maybe adams feels he has a right to demand from the US president….Sf will do what the bush admin wants…for it to sign up to policing….and in return…the US will get rid of any opposition within Irish america to sf’s sell out….that way bush and sf win….or do they?

  • NN

    Sinn Fein burned their bridges with Bush long ago, why should he worry about their demands of him? Bush views Adams with more contempt than he did Arafat. It is unlikely he will lose any sleep over the latest press release.

  • Kathy C

    Hi All,

    NN…if sf burned their bridges ever so long ago with Bush….then way did adams just yesterday tell the bush admin,

    “If Bush admin is to return to the positive role it and Clinton admin played in Irish pease process the anti-sinn fein elements will have to be reined in.”

    Doesn’t seem to me that the bridges have been burnt.

    You are correct about bush having contempt for adams but that doesn’t mean adams and company wouldn’t kiss the backside of bush to get back into bush’s good favor….hey maybe that’s just what they are doing with trying to get the membership of sf to go along with the police board….xxxxxxxx

  • Seano

    Tafkabo

    “They have managed to convince most republicans that they will not achieve their aims through violence.”

    Yes, but in the meantime they’ve managed to lose any semblance of advantage to negotiate with. And yes, Republicans NEED an advantage when negotiating with the Brits. Why? Because you and yours (unionists) prefer the staus quo. You prefer to drag on as if you’ve still got the upper-hand. You prefer the divided society, as to make sure things remain the same.

    Unionists who ask what a united Ireland holds for them, need only to look at what they are willing to invest.

  • Seano
    Its simpler than that.
    John Major said ” We have no economic, selfish or strategic interest in Northern Ireland”. Indeed Tony Blair went further by creating separate assemblies in Wales and Scotland, be under no mistake that Britain wants devolution in the North and not the status quo.
    Re- the spies, that was all to do with violent republicanism, which now being over means the beans can be spilt about penetration.
    Finally contentiously, SF shafted David Trimble, so the Assembly was collapsed.
    The DUP won’t go down that road.
    SF don’t need a bargaining chip, they just need to get on board re the GFA, and then they have equality and power-sharing.
    Your fears of this eternal status quo are unfounded, even the DUP are comitted to devolution. Its SF that are stalling IMHO.

  • Mickhall

    Pat’s claim that there is no alternative to SF reminded me of the Palestinian Struggle after the EU and US Government’s told the Israelis a decade or so ago, the PLO, [which in reality meant Arafat’s Al-Fatah] must be included in any future negotiations. Since then, with the return to the West-bank and Gaza strip of the Palestinian old Guard, we have seen them make one compromise after another to US and Israeli administrations. Time and again they have bent the knee to the Israeli State and its armorer in the White House in their mad quest for international recognition etc.

    Plus the majority of the Fatah leadership and their more servile and corrupt rank and file elements have enriched themselves at the mass of the Palestinian peoples expense, whilst Arafat and after his death his successor as Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas sleepwalked while making one wretched compromise after another whilst the Palestinian masses seethed with anger and resentment.

    Last week they were woken up with a sudden and unexpected jolt, that should have been a timely reminder to all revolutionary organizations that any radical party, that lies, cheats or mistreats those it represents, whilst in the process conceding ground to their tormentors and annulling sacred principles that are pivotal to their cause, has become a useless and worthless tool.

    Whether one agrees politically with Hamas or not, only a fool would deny they offered honesty, principle and a form of hope for the future which is not solely based on the Palestinian people bending the knee and making compromises to their tormentors. It really was not that long ago that people within the PLO, when asked if there was an alternative to Fatah, replied with Sheikh Ahmed Yassin and his small band of supporters in mind, “A few independents [non PLO] may put themselves forward, but by and large they are disaffected individuals on an ego trip.”

    Regards to all.

  • martin ingram

    Spirit Level,

    Quote”Re- the spies, that was all to do with violent republicanism, which now being over means the beans can be spilt about penetration.”Unquote

    Many of those who were involved in the ” Violent Republicism” are now involved in the political process. The evidence that Sinn Fein does not subscribe to your view is look at Sinn Fein`s public attitude to Freddy Scap, it is so embarrassed it can not come to terms with it. Anthony Mc in the Bel Tel makes very good points regarding infiltration, its well worth a read .

  • heck

    Mickall,

    I find myself agreeing with your analysis more and more—a scary thought. Britain and Sinn Fein should take notice of what happened in Palestine. Just because you can force the political leadership to make concessions does not mean the underlying issues have gone away.

    If you can pressure the SF leadership to support the PSNI, it does not mean that being policed by sectarian killers will be acceptable to the nationalist community. With the right spark someone else will come along and replace them. The old nationalist party was replaced by the SDLP because they were not seen as aggressive enough, and SF replaced the SDLP for the same reason. If SF continues to compromise then they will eventually be replaced. If SF supports the police without a transparent investigation into collusion then I will have reached that point. As I said on another thread, all I want is what the British government is demanding of Syria-a transparent, international investigation into state collusion with terrorists.

    PS does anyone think there is something bazaar about Honest Tony telling Hamas they must renounce violence. To paraphrase gorgeous George, it is similar to being told to stand up straight by Quasimodo and having him tell you he won’t talk to you because you have a hump.

  • David

    Heck

    Although SF outpoll the SDLP at present, the SDLP have three MPs and a large number of MLAs and councillors and are not replaced as such in the sense that the nationlaist party were. The SDLP have a new leader who is now an MP and the SDLP are putting forward a message that Sinn Fein eventually accepted. The SDLP won the battle of ideas and SF outpolled the SDLP largely because SF stole SDLP ideas.

    The interests of the broad nationalist people and the interests of the SDLP are inextricably bound up.

  • don

    “The interests of the broad nationalist people and the interests of the SDLP are inextricably bound up.”

    The problem being that less and less voters give their x to the sdlp

  • elfinto

    Heck, Mick, etc

    The Palestinian analogy is a good one although there are a number of significant differences (as one would naturally expect).

    Firstly, Hamas is a long established political and military organisation which has long had a significant support base so its electoral success, though greater than had been anticipated, was not entirely unpredictable. Within republicanism there is currently no obvious electoral alternative to Sinn Fein – other than the SDLP!

    Secondly, Hamas and Fatah have very different ideological perspectives – one is an Islamic fundamentalist movement while the other is a secular organisation. Any republican alternative to SF (should one emerge) would necessarily be idelogically similar to SF.

    Of course, now that Hamas have won they still have to play the same set of cards as Fatah. The Israelis will be as implacable as ever and will use ‘terror’ as an excuse not to negociate. It’s hard to see any improvement in the situation for the people of Palestine.

    Back to our squalid little situation. I agree with Heck that policing is now a critical issue for Adams & co. SF have been taking a bit of a battering recently and the PSNI, as presently constituted, is impossible to sell. It remains to be seen whether Blair is prepared to resurrect some of the recommendations of the Patten report which were not implemented. We deserve a police service which is free of murderers and their accomplices.

  • heck

    David– The facts that you present are correct but I am not sure that your conclusions are. Of the three SDLP MP’s one Eddie McGrady (sp?) will is at an age where he is unlikely to run in the next election. If SF can sort out their difficulties in South Down I think that seat will be theirs. In South Belfast the SDLP were lucky to face a divided unionist opposition, and Mark Durkan is running solely on the reputation of John Hume, in Hume’s old seat. (I could actually draw a comparison between John Hume and Arafat- at least in the respect they are held by all sections of their electorate and the way their successors use that reputation to hold onto support.)

    Remember that at the last election the British government and their allies in the media were doing everything to suppress the SF vote. The furor over the northern bank robbery was whipped up at the time and when that didn’t resonate the media switched to the McCartney murder. The way they used the tragedy of a deadly bar fight for political ends would make Karl Rove proud. Without that I think the SDLP vote would have been much lower.

    Your claim that the SDLP won the battle of ideas does not, in my view, hold water. The SDLP has actually become somewhat greener to combat SF. I don’t think they have won “the battle of ideas” with their decision to sit on police boards and the recent flap over collusion was a cynical piece of opportunism. I think that what happened was that SF were out negotiated by Honest Tony, who added the bit about excusing state murderers, and caught SF off guard. The SDLP came in and cynically exploited the issue.

  • David

    Heck

    I am not going to start speculating about a general election that is more than 3 years away but I don’t agree with your conclusions about the future for the SDLP, which I see as one of recovery.

    As for whether Sinn Fein have moved onto SDLP territory you yourself said that SF have moved. It is onto SDLP territory. I don’t believe SDLP have moved much at all.

    At the next Assembly Election, I expect the SDLP to keep or increase its number of seats and at the European Elections, SDLP are getting ready to take that back from SF. The SDLP have a new energy about them.

    The interests of the broad nationalist community are those of the SDLP and the nationalist community are continuing to vote for the SDLP.

  • Dr Ingram
    “The evidence that Sinn Fein does not subscribe to your view is look at Sinn Fein`s public attitude to Freddy Scap, it is so embarrassed it can not come to terms with it.”
    Fair point.
    Do you think the timing of the recent outings is in some way down to SF and HMG wanting to draw lines under the past and take things forward?
    The OTR thing got short shrift, but in general the gound is being prepared for a fully functioning democracy in the North. Agree?
    SF can be partners but have to go one step further and support the PSNI and assist in dismantling the criminal empire.
    I’m not optimistic in the short term, for as per normal SF want to try to get into power via the back door.
    As far as I’m concerned if they blow these negotiations, then your idea of a new party looks like a runner.
    I’m still hoping and praying that SF can carry the day for the republican movement.
    Gerry has what it takes, but he’s going to need balls of steel,or he’s going to need Balls the size of base-balls.
    Anyway does size matter?

  • martin ingram

    Spirit Level.

    No I dont think the last outing (Dennis D) was a joint initiative, Sinn Fein would prefer to move forward knowing they are penetrated but unable or unwilling to engage this cancer.

    If Sinn Fein truly exposed the Agents it was and remains aware of it would be very very damaging in the short term for the party and the broad Republican cause. I have my doubts that they will do this has they have shown no appetite to learn from the experiances of the past.

    I believe Dennis D was fed to the WOLVES ( Press) for purely selfish reasons by HMG.

    As regards the OTR issue. This issue is a red Herring? it is not about bringing home a small number of IRA men and women who may have committed crimes. This issue could be quickly addressed and no right thinking person could argue against in view of the GFA. This issue is about sweeping the large issue of collusion ( ON ALL SIDES) under the carpet, Sinn Fein are NO different here to the FRU or the RUC , they have a vested interest in this legislation.

    In respect to the bigger picture. You know my views regarding the responsibility upon those who are chosen to negotiate for the Republican / Nationalist communities.They should be free from British influence and they are not. I remain true to that position.

    I dont see anything substantial coming from any negotiations this year or indeed next by Sinn Fein. I am sorry to say that.

    In respect to Gerry. I am on record as stating that I dont believe he is the right person to negotiate this very important legislation or indeed lead the party in the forthcoming few years. That remains my position but I hope I am wrong. That said I know I am not.

    As regards Size of Balls .For what Gerry and Martin have done over the last thirty years they should have balls the size of a Donkey`s.

    Martin.

    PS I quite like this Dr title

  • Mickhall

    ‘martin’

    Any thought on where Donaldson might be, not precisely of course, but do you feel it is likely he would still be within the PRM orbit. After all, to survive for the amount of years he did as a tout, he must be able to think on his feet and one would have thought any guarantee he may have been given by the Provo’s, as to his future well being, he would take with a pinch of salt.[if indeed this happened] Besides I would not think the Brits would want him to be within the reach of ? ?.

    Could all that nonsense in Dublin been about upping his pension from the Brit’s. What actually happens to these people when it becomes common knowledge they were touts. Do you know of any who actually went off into the sunset and led a normal life.

  • abucs

    The analogy with the Israeli/Palestinian situation is not quite accurate.

    For a start, Sinn Fein and the British government are now on the same side.

    Although it might help people who would like to think of Republicans as pyschopathic murderers, it is not true that Republicans have stopped fighting because it wasn’t getting them anywhere, or that they suddenly saw themselves as immoral, I think the truth is that they have made peace with the British government now because they both have a similar vision for Northern Ireland. To fight with someone who now shares a similar view to you is silly. Witness the British Governments dismantling (sorry another D word) of what was the Unionist state. Whether it be the past taking over of government functions, the allowed role of Dublin in this, the employments rules, the boundary commissions, the parades commissions, the housing executive, the more recent 50/50 rule on policing, the future retirement of special branch, the police ombudsman, the policing board, the retirement of the home battalians, the move on CRJ’s and the support for shared executive cabinets and parity of esteem enshrined in law or the 7 local council announcement giving nationalist control of most of NI. The British Government has dismantled the old unionist state and politics is not going anywhere without shared rights and responsibilities.

    I repeat, Sinn Fein and the British government are now on the same side and Sinn Fein are closer to the British Government then any Unionist party is. Sinn Fein is much closer to the British government than it is to the Irish government, because of competitive electoral politics in the south.

    The recent on the run legislation was going to be supported by Sinn Fein until the outcry of Nationalists and the direct challenge by the SDLP. Hain was upset because he didn’t get Sinn Feins support in something that would have helped to cover-up the evidence of, shall we say, security mis-deads. But if not for the nationalist outcry, Sinn Fein would have supported it because they are working with the British Government.

    And this is not because they have been ‘penetrated’ or moved along to ‘proper democracy’ as some would see it. It’s because they share a similar vision and they are effectively on the same side.

  • slug

    All sounds very benign.

  • martin ingram

    Mick,

    No idea of his location, I doubt he is under a direct threat from any Organisation. I have a feeling HMG and Sinn Fein are content to let this blow over.I doubt we will see Dennis in the future.

    The manner in which he and Sinn Fein announced his role and the departure was interesting to say the least, my nose tells me that it was not what it seems though.

    I have a gut feeling Dennis will be Ok, his body language suggested to me a man who knew what the forthcoming period had planned for him. I have seen a few exposed at first hand , some are lucky some are not but I dont know any who had a Fairytail ending.

    If I am being honest once exposed it really is a life wasted. I know of some( The unexposed) today who are living life like normal and good luck to them , they are the lucky ones .

    I have a feeling Dennis is a lucky one.

  • Yoda

    I repeat, Sinn Fein and the British government are now on the same side and Sinn Fein are closer to the British Government then any Unionist party is.

    I’d go along with this.

    I’ve often wondered how and why unionism’s version of “Britishness” seems to be quite different from Britain’s idea of it.

  • Kathy C

    Hi all,

    Seano & hech, I agree with ya a page back that said SF gave away their advantage in negotiations and SF were out negotiated by the blair.

    During the time of negotiations I recall Martin McGuinness stepping out and saying how he admired blair…..I would have thought a good negotiator for the republican movement would had viewed blair as he was/is….the PM of the enemy.

    My sister and I gave SF several points to negotiate politically with power…yet they refuse to do it…..such as….politically work to get the cross of st. patrick out of the union jack…this will cause the DUP much pain and would demo that republicans can give a blow politically to the opposition…rather than just take the blows…but SF would have nothing to do with that….the DUP made the union jack an issue with flying it all the time and even today…they flaunt it…so I say…hurt them with it….politcally….but that would be negotiating from strength and the adams /mcguiness team is more for giving away to the brits what ever it is the brits want cause after all…mcguiness admires blair…gerry kelly sheilds the british army …and gerry adams…is inept and Alex maskey wants to find a place for the orange order in the north…all four of them should resign

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    ‘Pat’s claim that there is no alternative to SF reminded me of the Palestinian’

    The actual point was that at the moment there is no organised political opinion in the six northern counties other than SF AND THE SDLP for nationalists or republicans to vote for. Selective quotations are always very suspect.

    Anyway the point is factually correct. At this point the Ballymurphy version of Hamas content themselves harping from the sidelines offering no alternative on any given subject. It was the same last year and the years before that, all the way back to the signing of the GFA. Perhaps one day they will offer something positive. Continually stating Adams and Mc Guinness are bastards may find favour in the Sindo but it does get boring.

  • Mickhall

    salaam aleikum Pat.

  • Kathy_C

    Hi all,

    Pat, I think it is important for people to voice their political disatisfaction with adams/mcguiness because they are failing miserably as of late.
    There is no election today or tomorow…there is time yet….to wonder about who will vote for who….
    There was an informer leading sf’s admin at stormont and he also was handling the US Irish…these are serious political issues with political fall out….adams and mcguiness as leaders of the party and negoitations bear a responsiblilty for what went on during their tenure…
    I don’t see discussing these issues as boring…they are issues that need to be discussed and if someone calls adams and mcguiness a name…well, donaldson’s pr approach to Irish Americans called several of us names… I took sf’s abuse as directed by the hand of donaldson …maybe it’s time that adams and mcguiness get a taste of what was done to me and other Americans.
    And again I state, adams/mcguiness/kelly/maskey should resign their leadership has failed miserably as of late.

  • Kathy_C

    Hi all,

    Mick Hall, I just read today on nuzhound your article “WHEN IS ENOUGH ENOUGH.” of Jan 5/06

    It was excellent. Was there a thread on this board that discussed it…I would love to makes some comments.