“They can safely say the UDA has changed…”

A brief, and vague, BBC report on “secret talks” involving “international peacemakers” [aren’t they all at St Andrews? – Ed] and endorsed by an anonymous “Catholic community worker”. The ‘good’ UDA’s PR offensive continues.. BTW why do those “international peacemakers” have to prove their intent?

, ,

  • loftholdingswood

    It is vague and lacking in some key points but I’ll clarify it all (in more detail) tomorrow when it finishes. They have hardly been “secret talks” but a week long course/workgroup involving representatives of various countries (Moldova, Israel, Palestine and Transnistria (think that is the right spelling)), UPRG representatives from all areas (with one exception), Senior Loyalists and various English Lords, dignitaries, “Experts” and assorted friendly people. It has a huge learning curve for some of us and very worthwhile. I am not attending this morning but will pop in this afternoon and it officially finishes tomorrow but I have a feeling it will close after this afternoon’s session.

    It is not a question of the “international peacemakers” proving their intent but showing us how they went about things, the pitfalls, the experiences, etc.

    I had the privilege to witness three Israeli representatives sit side by side with the three Palestinian representatives and talk of their experiences. It was humbling to witness discourse and passionate argument without the threat of violence. And they sat in the same room as each other. A portent for the future perhaps? 2007 will see some remarkable things happen in this province I predict.

  • marty

    2007 will see some remarkable things happen in this province I predict.

    Do you mean from a UDA perspective? If so, what will happen if the required cash to “wind down” doesn’t turn up?

    If you mean from a wider perspective I’d like to share your enthusiasm but it will continue to be Groundhog day here.

  • Pete Baker

    Lofty

    I’m not convinced the enthusiastic portrayal of the representatives from Isreal and Palestine [or just of Israel and Palestine] engaging harbours an optimistic portent for the future given events elsewhere.

    But thanks for adding your view of the “secret talks”.. it does seem at odds with the BBC report and the suggestion from Frankie Gallagher that they [the international peacemakers] could “safely say the UDA has changed” once those “secret talks” have finished.

  • Little Eva

    “It is not a question of the “international peacemakers” proving their intent but showing us how they went about things…”

    Yeah, it would be well worth it just to have the “privilege” of hearing how those Israelis and Palestinians wnet about getting their mess sorted out. Fair play to them for keeping it so quiet up to now. The rest of us thought it was still a complete mess.

    Come off it.
    This is all just another scam. The “international peacemakers” get a week away from home, all expenses paid, plus their “consultancy” fee.
    The local facilitators – more like snake oil salemen – pocket an exorbitant fee, get the extra kudos from government and something else to add to their dodgy CV.
    The UDA get more positive publicity out of it, get a little further down the line towards the gov. making another big handout, and Frankie gets his media fix and made to feel important again.

  • lib2016

    Interesting how the selfstyled ‘moderates’ in unionism always seem ready to attack any suggestion that all sections of society have to be included in building a society of equals. As in Scotland at present they try to maintain that they and they alone have a veto on where we are headed.

    Seventy per cent of us want an inclusive society even though we realise that will mean powersharing with our political opponents. The 30% who oppose the GFA must be faced up to and taught that democratic politics means the acceptance of the results of referendums.

  • loftholdingswood

    “But thanks for adding your view of the “secret talks”.. it does seem at odds with the BBC report and the suggestion from Frankie Gallagher that they [the international peacemakers] could “safely say the UDA has changed” once those “secret talks” have finished.”

    Certainly the international guests have listened to our thinking and seemed to be impressed but I’ll leave it to them to comment (via the media who have been invited to question them).

    Little Eva,

    If you choose to believe it is a scam then there is little I can say to convince you otherwise. I have no idea how much people were paid nor do I particularly care. Expertise (or at least so called expertise) costs. I received nothing other than a pleasant lunch and some rather weak tea. I also “car shared” as the roads are snarled up with traffic in the morning so saved a few bob on petrol money.

    Marty,

    Yes I meant from a UDA perspective. Money to transform areas and bring new initiatives into deprived communities is a good thing. But I accept it must be strictly audited and above board.

  • Cynic

    “Yes I meant from a UDA perspective. Money to transform areas and bring new initiatives into deprived communities is a good thing. But I accept it must be strictly audited and above board.”

    And if the local community decide they don’t want the UDA involved in those new initiatives, will the UDA walk off into the sunset? Experience is that most of them will hang out around the back until the ordinary punters have gone home and torch the initiative.

  • marty

    LHW,
    I don’t disagree that, for example, the Lower Newtonards Rd, needs transformed.

    What does confuse me though is why this money is channelled into the area via the UPRG/UDA and not via the local MP. Taking my example above, Peter Robinson is the MP – why is he not taking this initiative? Why is it unelected representatives performing this role?

    Cheers.

  • marty

    will the UDA walk off into the sunset

    That’s what I was wondering when I asked LHW what would happen if the cash didn’t turn up.

  • POL

    If the uda is moving towards a new peaceful era then that can only be welcomed.

    However to pay them to do so, and for them to expect a finacial package to do so is a joke.How many times have we heard it said that the loyalists have inflicted more damage on their own community than the IRA ever did.

    Besides that, haven`t loyalists consistently told us that they will wait until after the latest political deadline to decide their future.This tells me that their intentions are pretty much based on whether we have devolution or joint authority .ie we will only go away if we get things our way(devolution)otherwise same as before.

    Meanwhile the continuation of extortion, racketeering and drug dealing goes on unabated.

    When they decommission stop criminality and make a statement that they are leaving the stage it will be a fair bit easier for the rest of us to give them any credence of respectability.

  • marty

    This tells me that their intentions are pretty much based on whether we have devolution or joint authority

    I don’t think it’s anything to do with that. It’s more like “give us a truck full of cash and we’ll go away”

  • POL

    I don’t think it’s anything to do with that. It’s more like “give us a truck full of cash and we’ll go away”
    Posted by marty on Oct 13, 2006 @ 01:54 PM

    Probably correct marty and another point if this cash is to benefit loyalist controlled areas then why as you`ve pointed out are their elected MPs not in the equation.

  • POL

    Is this an RIR type redundancy package then?

  • Dread Cthulhu

    marty: “I don’t think it’s anything to do with that. It’s more like “give us a truck full of cash and we’ll go away” ”

    A more likely scenario…

    “And that is called paying the Dane-geld;
    But we’ve proved it again and again,
    That if once you have paid him the Dane-geld
    You never get rid of the Dane. “

  • marty

    Dread,
    fair enough, I was half right :O)

  • Dread Cthulhu

    marty: “fair enough, I was half right :O) ”

    To be fair, you could be right and me just an old cynic…

    But I have a problem…

    Y’see, when one hood shakes down a single victim, saying “pay me and I won’t harm you,” we call in “extortion”

    When a gang of hoods shakes down a neighborhood in this fashion, we call it “racketeering.”

    However, LHW and UPRG seem to believe that when an organization of hoods does it to the whole of the state, we should call it “peace-making.”

  • Gum

    This is rubbish – I would like to say that I cant believe the govt would just sell out the people in areas plagued by Jackie McDonald’s thugs for a quieter life but thats what it looks like. The UDA will simply pocket the cash and continue peddling drugs, running brothels and beating opponents.