Surprise at fugitive figures…

WHAT surprised me most about Chris Thornton’s article on the IRA fugitives still ‘On The Run’ is how many there are wanting to return to Northern Ireland. Sinn Fein have, over the negotiations, passed almost 200 names to the British, of which 84 have been cleared to come back. Around 100 cases have yet to be resolved. Many observers had the estimated numbers much lower.

  • keep on keeping on

    why the surprise, Gonzo?

  • Keep on Running

    What surprises me most about the article is that anyone lucky enough to have got out of that poxy sewer during the conflict would be remotely interested in moving back.

  • Belfast Gonzo

    why the surprise, Gonzo?

    Because the numbers being touted around during the negotiations were always much smaller.

  • Irish Republican in America

    Home is home.

  • Cruimh

    Eleven were “freed under the Royal Prerogative of Mercy.” That’s the bit that bothered me.

  • I find the Crown’s failure to indicate who it is really still interested in prosecuting of those on the run a form of punishing them all, no matter how many of them there really are, especially since it continues to make noises that it will prosecute those of them who were apparently involved in the murder of Captain Robert Nairac, and the disappearance of his body – what seems a bit over the top, given who he was, and what he did, when at least a half dozen have already been convicted of his killing.

    It is just amazing how people can go on about the killing of this dirty covert operator – who was hired to do same – when no one, as far as I recall, has been convicted of murdering Rosemary Nelson, an officer of the courts who was butchered because of her defending republicans, and the inquiry into it is getting nowhere.

    Are people just doing their civil job or innocent civilians murdered for no reason to be treated worse than soldiers and police who were killed while doing their hazardous employment?

  • Turgon

    Cruimh,

    I agree though the whole letting the terrorists out bit bothers me. We now have a situtation where if a murder was committed for “political” purposes it is little more serious than burgulary. I guess once that sort of perverted logic is applied you can understand why mercy is as debased a concept as justice.

  • I wonder…

    Turgon:
    Why do you have a problem with the concept of amnesty? It is the mark of a civilised society that we can, in the aftermath of conflict, seek to establish a civil regime which is, as we all long believed “better” than those who sought to destroy it.

  • Turgon

    I wonder,

    I agree with 50% remission if people are unlikely to reoffend (which if the terrorists have truly stopped is a bit more likely). I do not support the death penalty but I do not believe in two year goal sentences for murder. I also have a problem that murdering someone in a robbery, family dispute etc. etc. attracts a much more severe sentence than a murder motivated by “politics”.

    By the logic you apply all those convicted of war crimes should be given amnesty once the war is over. I do not imagine that would be acceptable in Rawanda, post second world war etc. so why is it here?

  • I wonder…

    TG
    Why do you and others always bring up World War 2 when thinking about Northern Ireland?

    I thought this situation was only seen as a “war” by the IRA? By making comparisons with WW2 you play into their rhetoric, which I imagine you dont want to do.
    Rwanda is a different situation altogether, “crimes against humanity” hardly begins to describe that situation. I can concede that there was a degree of ethnic cleansing to the IRA campaign, but in essence, if there ever was a “war” the aim of perpetrating that war has not and never will be achieved. Both you and I are happy with that? The best thing we can do now is to rise above the squalid sectarianism of our violent past and prove that a society can emerge which is better than those who sought to defile and destroy the rest of us.

    I’m glad to have come through this conflict and am deeply compassionate for all of those who suffer to this day. But I also feel that those who have suffered – and forgive – have a moral high ground at which I can only admire and I beleive that those people will accept that OTRs live out their lives. At the end of those lives, though, depending on your view, there may still be cases to answer. 🙂

  • Prince Eoghan

    Sober words from I wonder!

    >>By the logic you apply all those convicted of war crimes should be given amnesty once the war is over. I do not imagine that would be acceptable in Rawanda, post second world war etc. so why is it here?<< If reflecting on our situation half the British establishment who had/have a hand in the security services would be in deep shit.

  • I wonder…

    Your Highness

    Ultimately, there may be a Tribunal which both the Establishment and the Provies and their Loyalist counterparts may have to face.

    Somehow, I don’t think that the economic aspects of THAT enquiry will be pertinent.

  • lib2016

    Prince,

    Do those people who think that dropping chemical weapons on the Kurds merits capital punishment know who began that policy?

    If we’re going to talk WW2…….!

  • I wonder…

    Can we bring WW2 under Godwin’s Law puhleeese..? 🙂

  • Prince Eoghan

    lib2016

    That wasn’t WW2 but I agree with your assertion. Not only the first ones to use chemical weapons on civilians, but whisper it….concentration camps during the Boer war for women and children resulting in deaths in the tens of thousands.

  • I wonder…

    I wonder about Justice sometimes. Is the wish to see the OTRs hung drwn and quartered REALLY that far from our minds?

    By way of contrast to those victims who forgave and forgive, I am mindful of one lady – Aileen Quinton – who personally protested against the (now aborted) OTR legislation. She chose, as part of her campaign, to mis-represent a fellow victim, Gordon Wilson, as (she claimed) he never forgave the murderers of his daughter at Enniskillen. Any Google search will prove her wrong.

  • lib2016

    One of the leaders in WW2 – on behalf of the ‘liberal democracies’ no less – was a war criminal? No doubt we’ll hear lots of condemnations and rhetorical ‘forgivings’ of him from those who appear to believe that they have ‘the moral high ground’. 😉

  • Turgon

    I wonder,

    I used thw second world war as an example that in the end of a war there is one does not grant amnesty
    In a conflict such as Rwanda one does not grant amnesty.

    I suspect that you and probably all of us here agree that there was no justification for the appaling crimes committed here.

    As far as I am concerned they were crimes pure and simple. Society does require to punish people for crimes. We (in my view entirely approproiately) use imprisonment as a punishment. The length of the sentence is determined by the severity of the crime. The exception is terrorist crimes where now crimes committed pre the current agreement attract only a two year sentence. Are we really saying that the Enniskillen bomb or the Shankill fish shop or any of the other murders committed here are vastly less severe crimes than the lady who murdered her husband and was sentenced last week?

    In terms of forgiveness there are a number of points on this.

    I feel that to be forgiven one must show some sort of remorse (the biblical term is repentence), terrorists here have shown little or none of that.

    Even if you forgive without repentence from the criminal; that does not mean that the criminal does not go to gaol. We have all heard of murderers appologising prefusly for their crime. Yes they may get a reduced sentence but not only two years.

  • Paul McMahon

    “I used thw second world war as an example that in the end of a war there is one does not grant amnesty”

    Yep, and sometimes one does not even have to be granted an amnesty as one is venerated as a war hero dispite having been responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of civillians?.

    http://www.bible-researcher.com/dresden/harris.html

    Is this not a war crime?, more civillians deliberately killed in one day than all the civillians killed in the conflict here.

    “Society does require to punish people for crimes. We (in my view entirely approproiately) use imprisonment as a punishment. The length of the sentence is determined by the severity of the crime”

    Sure it is, just ask the Guilford Four, Birmingham Six, Maguire Seven, Judith Ward, Pat Kane, Danny McNamee ….

  • Turgon

    Paul McMahon,

    So because miscarriages of justice occur no one should go to prison? I cannot recall anyone suggesting that the surviving Shankill fish shop bomber was the victim of a miscarriage of justice.

  • I wonder…

    TG
    Crimes of passion are subject to considerations of likelihood of repetition.

    Judicial views interact with elected represntatives views.

    Were I the girlfriend of the man Billy Wright murdered at point-blank range at Oxford Island, were I the woman that saw his face as he blasted Denis’ brains on my lap and on the gearstick, I would still want Billy’s murder investigated. Thats how I am.

  • I wonder…

    TG
    The man that detonated that bomb is responsible. Let it go. He is judged.

  • Seany, Big Brother

    Can I come home to Derry now?

  • aileen

    “I wonder about Justice sometimes. Is the wish to see the OTRs hung drwn and quartered REALLY that far from our minds?

    By way of contrast to those victims who forgave and forgive, I am mindful of one lady – Aileen Quinton – who personally protested against the (now aborted) OTR legislation. She chose, as part of her campaign, to mis-represent a fellow victim, Gordon Wilson, as (she claimed) he never forgave the murderers of his daughter at Enniskillen. Any Google search will prove her wrong.

    Posted by I wonder… on Jun 24, 2007 @ 05:51 PM”

    For the benefit of anyone who might beleive this, it is not true.

    For a start I take and have always taken an anti captital punisment stance.

    Secondly I never involved Gordon Wilson’s views as part of the OTR campaign. I have pointed out that in the first interview that he gave that is often quoted as being the one in which he forgave the IRA, he did not actually say it. Again the point was not that he did or did not forgive them but that in the inteview which so many people “remember” as him forgiving the IRA he didn’t say it.

    The views he expressed in that inteview about the bombers were not disimilar to my own.

  • aileen

    ..and just to be clear my comments about this interview were not made as part of the campaign against the legislation.

  • ciaran

    Forget the otr’s let them come home. The very nature of the conflict has meant that very few of the guilty were actually punished on both sides. If we start to pick on the otr’s then we are going to have to look at all the guilty parties. And if we get into that mess we will have to forget about a national stadium and build a huge new prison to put everyone into.

  • DK

    In terms of origination of the invention of the concentration camp, the Spanish were first with their camps for loyalists in Cuba, which were even called cmapes de concentration (or similar). Having said that, the British almost certainly came up with the concept independently for the Boers. And then the Germans/Soviets probably didn’t study either the Boer or Cuban wars to come up with their own national versions.

  • I Wonder

    Aileen

    You represented him on another site as not forgiving the murderers of his daughter. You did this at a time when you were making personal appearances and appeals against the OTR legislation, as is your right to do.

    However, you do not have any right to speak on behalf of people who are no longer able to speak for themselves, even though the people that you associate with on the internet have no problem with mocking the dead.

    You attempted to slur the memory of a man who was unable to respond to your misrepresentation. That is now rectified. Your attitude to other victims (Bloody Sunday) is telling.

  • Paul McMahon

    “So because miscarriages of justice occur no one should go to prison”?

    I didn’t say that Turgon, I used the examples of miscarriages of justice to demonstrate that your

    “Society does require to punish people for crimes. We (in my view entirely approproiately) use imprisonment as a punishment”

    Isn’t quite as cut and dried as some would have us believe.

    Your avoidance of my WWII war criminal analogy is very telling

  • aileen

    “Aileen
    You represented him on another site as not forgiving the murderers of his daughter. You did this at a time when you were making personal appearances and appeals against the OTR legislation, as is your right to do.
    However, you do not have any right to speak on behalf of people who are no longer able to speak for themselves, even though the people that you associate with on the internet have no problem with mocking the dead.
    You attempted to slur the memory of a man who was unable to respond to your misrepresentation. That is now rectified. Your attitude to other victims (Bloody Sunday) is telling. ”

    Give me strength!!!!!!

    For the benefit of the wider audience and not the above commentator as that would be pointless

    I did not represent Gordon Wilson on any site as not forgiving the murderers of his daughter, I made the point that he did not say so in his first interview, the one that was televised and that many people have a false memory in so far as they are totally convinced that they heard him say so on THAT INTERVIEW (I have heard it called “the-interview-where-Gordon-Wilson-forgave-his daughter’s-killers). I should not have to point out that that is not the same as saying that he did not forgive them. The statement X did not say Y on time/occasion Z is not the same as saying “X never said Y on any occasion” or “X does not believe Y” or “X believes (notY)”. The accusation of speaking on behalf of him is false. Again just in case anyone is not up to speed, I commented on his first interview and what he did not say. I did not extrapolate in terms of his opinion. His opinion on forgiveness and whether or not he did forgive is not my place to ascertain and is in no way relevant in any shape or form to my comment. The misrepresentation and “slur” in this instance is not down to me.

    I cannot remember all the times that I have made this comment I have made many comments on other sites that like this have little or no relevance to the OTR legislation, (and were also not part of the campaign), before, during and after said campaign.

    As for my attitude to Bloody Sunday victims my views have been misrepresented (I wonder who could have done that?) as “acclaiming” the deaths despite the following comment from the quote in which I am supposed to have thus acclaimed:-

    “…………that does not mean that this was not a dreadful tragedy, which has resulted in a lot of ongoing and genuine sorrow for a lot of people and which I can take no pleasure in. Also even if one of those who died was in the IRA, it doesn’t mean that they all were. The punishment for being in an illegal procession is not death. …………….”

    And before someone takes that as accusing one of the victims of IRA membership, it was picking up on something someone else had said on the thread hence the “EVEN IF”

    Belfast Gonzo sorry your thread has gone so far OT. That isn’t an apology as I reserve the right to challenge the misrepresentation, tedious and wearisome as it is to write and I’m sure to read.

  • Slugger O’Toole Admin

    I wonder, you’ve been playing fast and loose with the ball not man on a range of people in the public domain and elsewhere. YOu know the rules, not least because I have applied them in your favour when you were the victim of an online campaign elsewhere. But in this case I’ve warned you a number of times. You are as welcome as any on Slugger to express your views, but not if as it generally is, about getting at people rather than making a point, whether it be Aileen or Martin McGuinness. Either take it somewhere else, or take a Red Card!