Stark reminder of darker days

A 15 year old boy was left seriously injured following a sectarian attack in which his skull was broken and his attackers tied a wire around his neck and dragged him along the road. The attack, on the interface at Clifton Park Avenue, led to a protest in the area last night.

  • Ms Wiz

    Dear God, grown men beating on a wee boy of 15. Poor lad I hope he makes a full recovery. The Kill-a-Taig season is officially underway.

  • RG Cuan

    Terrible story.

    Strange how the report does not once mention the word Loyalist saying that it was this grouping that obviously carried out the sectarian attack.

  • darren stewart

    Shocking as it sounds it doesnt come as a big shock to me,for the last few weeks nationalists have been attacking manor street and it was only a matter off time before locals of the lowwer oldpark took this sort of action..im not saying they were right to attack this lad but if nationalists attack the area again im sure this wont be the last we shall hear off someone geting beat up..

  • ingram

    Scum

  • snakebrain

    Yet another horrific, yet totally predictable, attack on an innocent and vulnerable individual in the run-up to the marching season. This can’t stop soon enough.

    Why aren’t there heightened levels of police patrol in these flashpoint areas for the month or so approching the 12th? Because half the perpetrators are on the books of the police intelligence gathering apparatus and they’ll overlook “minor” crimes in hope of finding out about “major” crimes? Maybe they just can’t be bothered? A lot of these crimes seem pretty preventable and the prosecution rate is negligible. That smells a bit funny to me.

    Yesterday afternoon I was driving through Belfast (in the passenger seat actually) idly photographing things as we rolled past them. Interesting front gardens, murals, birds, whatever. We turned off Milltown Road just by the large and very messy bonfire that’s being built there and I took a couple of snaps on the way past. We were promptly ordered to fuck off by a pretty unpleasant looking guy with a bunch of teenagers in support. Orangefest, that enjoyable fun event marking the summer, anybody?

    The time for tolerance of these aspects of this “culture” is long since gone…

  • Lorraine

    the eradication of sectarianism should be a priority for all

    apropo darren stewart’s comment:
    wise up darren, trying to justify this attack with your comments is as sickening as the the attack itself. sectarianism is wrong irrespective of who practices it. all too often these thugs are drugged up and bozed up social inadequates who take succour from comments like yours. lets isolate the sectarians, the catholic sectarians and the protestant sectarians. we deserve better.

  • manichaeism

    I wondered how long it would be before a “whatabout” comment. Comment number 3! Fairly fast!

  • RG Cuan

    Well said Snakebrain and Lorraine.

    The ‘cultural’ institutes of Loyalism are often used as a smokescreen for increased sectarianism and hatred.

    Isolation and eradication is the only way forward.

  • JP

    In responding to the sectarian incursions into the Oldpark in this way people achieve nothing but hurting an innocent member of the public (in this case a child) and presenting the Chris Donnelly’s of the world the opportunity to portray such events as the isolated, context-less and unmitigated sadism of the naturally evil planters.

    I would suggest that rather than exploiting this situation to try and establish a goodies and badies style moral narrative, shouldn’t we mention the tit for tat character of these incidents and try to responsibly promote dialogue to ensure that the causes for such hatred are exposed and dealt with ?

    the cynicism of the piece is manifest, the voyeuristic details of the assault and the clear description of the sectarian motivation where no culprits have been apprehended, yet it is neglected to mention any good wishes to the boy’s recovery.

    On behalf of all his Protestant neighbours and Protestants throughout the province I would like to wish this poor child a speedy recovery and hope that his family can find some comfort at this awful time.

    using the actions of the hate filled to inspire more hatred is an awful thing to do and I would ask any Catholic reading this who feels motivated to ( the understandable) hostility towards Protestants to remember that in submitting to that sensation, you are experiencing the same thing that inspired these dirty thugs to assault a teenage boy. Or indeed the same impulse that lead to Glasgow Celtic fans assaulting a three year old girl on the stena line, an incident I do not believe Mr. Donnelly covered.
    At some point we must rise above our impulses and draw a line in the sand, and like those countless widows of police men we used to see on the TV, we must plead (even with ourselves and our appetites) that there should be no retaliation and no appetite for retaliation, otherwise we are no longer battling the beast,
    we are the beast.

    Even when we look to the real monsters of our history, Murphy, Maginchly, Stenson even Sean Kelly we must remember that they to, no doubt, had their saucy stories of innocents assaulted and images of savage hostile tribes to inspire their fury.

  • Oilibhear Chromaill

    Given that the Marching Season brings on these attacks from unionist/loyalist sources year on year, perhaps it’s time to simply ban all Orange/Loyal Order parades.

    I would also be for banning outright both Celtic and Rangers or, at least, suspending the right of attendance at these games of fans from the North.

  • confused

    Lorraine
    You should read Darren’s remarks before rushing to condemn him.
    For a start he did not justify this criminal act but simply tried to offer a reason why it took place and went on to say it was not right.
    Perhaps he should have condemned it with more vigour but you have misrepresented his views.
    I agree that sectarianism should be confronted and shown for what it is.
    The people who carried out this vile and cowardly act need to be handed over by their community to face the full rigours of the law and be locked away for many years. As one contributor has correctly described them as scum

  • JP,

    Unfortunately your detailed post ultimately served as just another case of whataboutery, and you have placed yourself in a very precarious position.

    Why J.P., is it not possible to just condemn this attack in an isolated fashion? Why do you feel the need to seek reassurance knowing that you have condemned the attack with the full knowledge that you have also now ‘educated’ us all about incidents perpetrated by others.

    As for your assertions that people on this blog may be motivated to harm their Protestant neighbours, that is the most condescending, sanctimonious statement that i have ever seen on Slugger.

    Just who the hell do you think you are JP? More to the point, who exactly do you think we are? Do you think that any of the decent people here would possibly descend to the level of the Neantherdal Scumbags who committed this attack?

    You need to get off your somewhat aloof little perch JP – And make that real quick…

  • snakebrain

    JP

    I’ll respond just as fervently to Nationalist attacks, though in this thread what’s being discussed is a particular Loyalist attack, hallmarked by a savagery that is sadly unsurprising.

    I don’t think you can accuse CD of unnecessary cynicism, he’s simply posted the story of a terrible event in the heart of our city. The “voyeurism” you accuse him of is better considered as a willingness to recount and set down on record the horrific nature of this assault. I don’t think either that you can consider this as an incitement to hatred. An incitement to despair perhaps. There may well be those who will react to this story by being filled with the desire for retaliation, but as you say, they are the beast.

    While on the one hand I appreciate your thoughts of goodwill towards the family of this boy, there’s a streak of whataboutery in your comments that belies the higher sentiments you express.

    There is “a goodies and badies style moral narrative”; it’s very clear cut and very simple, and not divided on religious or tribal grounds. It’s between the goodies who do not perpetrate or tolerate any attack of this kind, and the baddies who do. There are goodies and baddies on both sides of the religious divide. It’s time the baddies were stopped in their tracks.

  • joeCanuck

    You should be ashamed of yourself Darren Stewart.
    Your remarks are totally disgusting.

    “I’m not saying that they were right..but..”

    Yuck.

  • jp

    “Why J.P., is it not possible to just condemn this attack in an isolated fashion? Why do you feel the need to seek reassurance knowing that you have condemned the attack with the full knowledge that you have also now ‘educated’ us all about incidents perpetrated by others.”

    because this is not an isolated incident and we must look to the prevention of such incidents, rather than their punishment after the fact, as a long term solution. The criminal action in this incident, ‘assult’, can be condemned in isolation but to do so we leave out the apparent sectarian motivation’ and the incidents that inspire that motivation and thusly the substance of these events.

    In order for us to oppose these incidents effectively we must understand them and the first stage of that understanding is to recognise their plural nature. The only function served in ‘isolated condemnation’ is to offer an exclusive example of prods behaving badly, something which is no doubt the purpose of many interested parties but in terms of a meaningful stance against sectarianism, its worthless, and indeed in itself sectarian.

    I mention incidents of a converse nature to remind people that we do not face a situation of one sided, unmotivated aggression, such a situation at an ethnicity conscious level does not exist, but that the barbarism of this incident is replicated and indeed inspired by the identical barbarity of its opposite cases and vice versa again. Presenting this situation as an outcome of men playing flutes is to contribute to sectarianism, you should recognise that it is not the marching season, but the violent reaction to it that is the problem, and the violence that violent action has produced in turn.

    “As for your assertions that people on this blog may be motivated to harm their Protestant neighbours”

    I made no such suggestion, I said ‘hostility’ and the post –

    “The ‘cultural’ institutes of Loyalism are often used as a smokescreen for increased sectarianism and hatred.

    Isolation and eradication is the only way forward”

    would seemingly affirm that suggestion.
    I would be hard pressed to think of anything more hostile than “eradication”

    the rest of your post as it was a reaction to your own misinterpretation, not my comment

    and I think “we” are people who as far as I can see peddle their sectarianism from behind a keyboard rather than with fists, it might make your actions less repulsive, it say as nothing for your motives.

  • bluer

    There is no tit-for-tat.

    The person spreading that is merely trying to justify attempted murder with a falsehood.

    A disgusting attack, carried out by animals inspired by the Orange culture of hate.

    Best wishes to the unfortunate boy, worst wishes to those who attacked him and their cheerleaders justifying it on this website.

  • Prince Eoghan

    I live in Glasgow, we have had a lot of OO marches through my area lately. In the hours after it there are always those singing these hate songs, shouting ef the pope etc. This weekend 4 skinheads in their 20’s were walking along the road signing what I thought was the hokey cokey. Turns out it was all about catching a Taig and doing to him what this boy suffered. A clear attempt at murder. Funny no SF here to tell me and my neighbours (mixed) that we don’t want these nice people anywhere near us.

    Roll on the Orangefest/hatefest with the lovely harmless songs and hymms.

  • jp

    JP

    I’ll respond just as fervently to Nationalist attacks, though in this thread what’s being discussed is a particular Loyalist attack, hallmarked by a savagery that is sadly unsurprising.

    do you wish to suggest that such savagery’s a unique Loyalist trait ?

    I don’t think you can accuse CD of unnecessary cynicism,

    is there such a thing a necessary cynicism ? Its the selective nature of the coverage that I feel is cynical, incidents like these have propaganda merit for those who would wish to spread hate, it is not beyond possibility that the people who organised the incursions into the old park were hoping for this sort of event to take place. this is a noted republican tactic. and when the tragic tit for tat cycle of violence is presented in these isolated terms by people with political form, its clearly to incite a reaction.

    While on the one hand I appreciate your thoughts of goodwill towards the family of this boy, there’s a streak of whataboutery in your comments that belies the higher sentiments you express.

    whataboutery, as I understand it, is a term invented in Northern Ireland to denounce the denouncement of selective condemnation, many instances of whataboutery do more to address the reality of the situation than the contrived political narratives the term was coined to defend. now whilst it can be seen as an attempt at the justification of the ‘your’ sides transgressions by a comparison to the that of the other side, that was not my intention, my intention was to call attention to the totally unjustifiable nature of tit for tat incidents like this and to suggest that they can only be addressed when both communities are prepared to air their own muck, not just the other sides.

    There is “a goodies and badies style moral narrative”; it’s very clear cut and very simple, and not divided on religious or tribal grounds.

    A fine sentiment, only partially complicated by the fact that its baddies who invent the narrative (on tribal and religious grounds) and baddies who present it to the public in such a way that we all have different ideas about who the baddies are, depending on our side of the fence.

    it would be wonderfully simple if Northern Ireland were a conflict of good people verses bad people, but unfortunately we are split on the grounds of ethnicity and ambition, not morality and my good guy is the Sinn Fein voters bad guy, and vice versa, Northern Ireland is not good versus bad, its Protestants versus Catholics the baddies generally being at the forefront of both sides and are endorsed by those behind, who are not so good, even in relation to scumbags like the above, as they might like to think.

  • ath

    my my, how republicans have changed their tune?? Condemnation eh? Republicans, as epitomised by RSF pick and choose who and what they wish to condemn. So please, please do not start preaching about condemnation. As far as I can see every unionist blogger has unreservedly condemned this despicable act. Get over it, oh I forgot it’s prod bashing month on slugger!

  • Oranges for Sale

    Well, I’ve read the BBC report about 3 times now and I can’t seem to find any reference to the Orange Order or anyone with links to the Orange Order. The attackers were without a doubt Protestants but thats no reason for a bit of OO bashing. Some of the Republican posts seem to ignore that a local protestant woman attempted to stop the attack:

    “He remembers that a Protestant woman came out of her house and shouted at them to stop.”

    I used to get beaten up by republicans on the way home from school years ago, but I dont hold a grudge against Catholics!

  • parcifal

    nice one Prince, that is the norm.

    JP
    “you should recognise that it is not the marching season, but the violent reaction to it that is the problem” ..
    is possibly the thickest statement I’ve ever read on Sluggers in 2 years.
    Who is brainwashing you JP?
    Wake up.

  • RG Cuan

    Get real JP –

    Isolation of the bigots and eradication of violent sectarian institutions is hardly a call for hostility towards normal law-abiding Unionists.

    And a note to all –

    The sooner we stop using the terms Catholic and Protestant the better. Most of us probably to not practise any religion anyway.

    The divide here in the north is an ethnic one – between indigenous people and those who came here during the Plantations.

    If you don’t like using the terms Gael/Native or Planter then Nationalist and Unionist are alot more representaitve of our situation than Catholic or Protestant.

  • Oranges for Sale

    Prince Eoghan

    “I live in Glasgow”

    If you just cant stand the sight of the Orange Order, then your living in the wrong town. Might I suggest, Dundalk?

  • jp

    I would suggest the comments calling for the Orange order to be eradicated because it ‘spreads hatred’ (to its opponents more so than its adherants it would seem) as proof of the propagandile merit and function of these selective tales.

    Ther is also the outragous sentiment that Orange lodges spread hatred, something there is not a shread of evidence for, yet huring groups named after people responsible for acts of ethnic cleasing are apparently fine and dandy.

    an assult with no convictions was of course loyalist and indeed inspired by hate talks in orange lodges, yet a kneecapping by the brother in law of an IRA gang leader is above conjectures.

    selective morality for an entirely agenda driven debate forum.

  • RG Cuan

    JP said: “yet huring (sic) groups named after people responsible for acts of ethnic cleasing are apparently fine and dandy.”

    Didn’t realise there were any hurling clubs in Serbia.

    But seriously, you sure this is not more evidence of your brainwashed background?

  • jp

    Isolation of the bigots and eradication of violent sectarian institutions is hardly a call for hostility towards normal law-abiding Unionists

    you did not call for the eradication of violent sectarian institutions – you called for the eradication of groups you deem to be secterian that the Unionist community places great value on, if you want to abolish secterian platforms im al for it, but to suggest republicans are in a position to impartially denote what is secterian and what is not is laughable, you simply abuse the conceopt as a platform for your own secterianism, as evidenced by your exclusively protest targets.

    The divide here in the north is an ethnic one – between indigenous people and those who came here during the Plantations. – so you see the troubles as a race war? and yet you would seek to present your exclusive condemnation of protest instituions as reasonable..?
    its those ethnic sands’s and Adams’s against those english lord oneils and danny kennedy’s is it ??

  • Turgon

    Bluer,

    I agree there is no tit for tat. The reality is that there are unpleasant crimes committed by person or persons against this individual. No ifs buts or maybes. Whilst discussion of other attacks may help explain the context it cannot explain or excuse the crime. I do not think either Darren Stewart or JP are trying to justify the attacks. If they were I condemn that as well.

    “by animals inspired by the Orange culture of hate” – is hardly helpful language.

    Oilibhear,
    Although more subtle the following is not particularly helpful either

    “perhaps it’s time to simply ban all Orange/Loyal Order parades.

    I would also be for banning outright both Celtic and Rangers or, at least, suspending the right of attendance at these games of fans from the North.”

  • Glensman

    Prince Eoghan,

    Some of my work colleagues at Michelin Ballymena decide to sing that same hokey cokey song to me on their breaks. Only around marching season though. And only when the are in large numbers.

    Brave sons of ulster.

  • snakebrain

    “do you wish to suggest that such savagery’s a unique Loyalist trait ?”

    No, but it certainly is a hallmark of the Loyalist attacks that swing round with depressing regularity this time of year every year. Of course, it was also a hallmark of the IRA, and countless other nationalists I’m sure. That’s not what we’re talking about here though. The unfortunate reality is that there are an awful lot of brutal attacks on innocent individuals emanating from the Loyalist community in the approach to the 12th every year.

    “is there such a thing a necessary cynicism ?”

    Yes, when dealing with those who occupy morally ambivalent positions, or who try to veil or otherwise distort the truth.

    “it is not beyond possibility that the people who organised the incursions into the old park were hoping for this sort of event to take place. this is a noted republican tactic”

    No comment. You’ve said enough.

    “that was not my intention, my intention was to call attention to the totally unjustifiable nature of tit for tat incidents like this”

    Admirable, but the reality is that there hasn’t actually been a comparable incident in the recent past in that area emanating from the nationalist community, so what you have is either a Loyalist escalation of a low-level feud, or an unprovoked attack, either of which is unjustifiable. I’m not excusing nationalist attacks of any kind, if they have happened, but they don’t justify or excuse this.

    Whataboutery is usually viewed as the attempt but excuse the actions of one side by reference to the actions of another. Therefore, your comments are pure whataboutery, whatever higher purpose you may claim.

    I didn’t say the NI conflict was a good vs bad conflict. I said there were goodies and baddies on both sides. Of course there are other ways you can cut the pie, but that one stands nonetheless.

    I don’t quite understand what you mean when you say the baddies invent the narrative; not mine they don’t. They are simply categorised as baddies, who carry out inexcusable crimes, from those who carried out this attack to those who killed innocent people in Omagh..

    “As far as I can see every unionist blogger has unreservedly condemned this despicable act. Get over it, oh I forgot it’s prod bashing month on slugger!”

    It’s not about the condemnation, it’s about the reservation.

  • VOR

    How did they know the kid was a Catholic?

  • bluer

    Helpful? Who the hell are we meant to be helping? These scumbags?

    Animals carried out a brutal attempted murder on a defenseless child. This comes, yet again, as cultural activities like burning effigies of Catholics come to the boil.

    Scumbags fueled up by a culture of hatred.

    A whole culture that annually burns people and things associated with their neighbours leading to brains getting smashed. Help them? Fuck them.

  • Kevster

    The motivation for such sadistic barbarity escapes me. Since the article states it was a grown man with the driver, I just can’t fathom what he had to gain by beating an innocent teenager with a bloody golf club.

    Sick and twisted are the only words that come to mind.

  • RG Cuan

    It’s the type of ‘cultural’ behaviour that BLUER describes that should be eradicated JP.

    If Nationalists carried out similar rituals i’d say the same – the fact is that they don’t.

    And you can’t deny that cultural differences, based on ethnic and political divides, is much more relevant than current religious affiliations.

  • snakebrain

    Kevster

    That’s all that really need to be said

  • jp

    from faith and duty, where the tactic is noted : “Even though he empathised with his co-religionists in their demands for civil rights, Curtis tells how he was to be shocked by the callousness of the republican movement. Early in the book Curtis describes a small group of men directing youths as they rioted in Ardoyne, others setting of bangers hoping the soldiers would ‘return’ fire and maybe even (if they were lucky) injure someone. Later he would describe finding the body of a man beaten and tortured by the IRA, almost beyond recognition.”

    sorry if i provocted distaste on your part, i was not stating an opinion, but a noted aspect of history.

  • Turgon

    Bluer,

    I have been attending 12th celebrations for years. I may have burned the burgers sometimes on the barbarque by mistake but that is about it.

    You are claerly a man / woman with the ability to engage in reasoned debate and argument. I look forward to your next rational and intellectually stimulating post.

  • bluer

    The culture of death:

    Fuck Mickey Bo

    KAT – Kill All Taigs

    Orange culture fuels those that would bash in the brains of children.

  • snakebrain

    Turgon

    Good answer.

    I’m just waiting for Trow to tun up and educate us all on what actually happened..

  • Turgon

    Bluer,

    Thankyou; no really thank you. I do think you should seriously consider enrolling for a PhD with that sort of abiltiy to impartially critique and that rapier like intellect so ably demonstrated. May I be so presumptious as to call you Dr. Bluer?

  • Diluted Orange

    What has the OO got to do with any of this?

    The people who did this are scum but the folk on this thread who are using this attack as a means to point the finger at all Protestants and Orangemen in Northern Ireland are kidding themselves.

    This isn’t a Prod/Catholic thing; this is a societal thing – totally cross community. What sort of society breeds the type of grown men that are capable of callous acts such as this? What sort of mentality or warped perception of the world must a person have if they feel it necessary to bludgeon a 15 year old boy to brink of death for no other reason than he is a Catholic?

    The situation in North Belfast is archaic to say the least – you’d think it was 1907 not 2007 there given the regularity of the sectarian attacks which take place, of which this incident is only one.

    The dismantling of the peace walls are a long way off – in a period during which we are supposed to be living in peace. Worryingly, the kids who are throwing petrol bombs over the walls aren’t children who have been scarred by growing up during the Troubles – this is meant to be the ‘Peace’ generation. Something has gone very wrong here – these children are perpetuating the actions and the hatred of their ancestors, not because of their own experiences but because the sectarian baggage continues to be passed down to them from one generation to the next.

    Where is the community leadership in North Belfast? It seems that every summer there is a situation at the Ardoyne shops and/or masses of petrol bombs are thrown. Are there any attempts being made, whatsoever, at fostering some sort of cross-community feeling or are we going to have to keep the sky-high barracades up between the Nationalist and Unionist communities there for another generation?

  • Sunningdale

    If this thread is an example of the attitudes that form a new future for my kids then I don’t know whether to say a plague on all your houses or just hang my head and cry.

    Basic facts guys, I grew up in North Belfast and sectarianism is if anything worse now than it was in the worst of the 1970s.

    In my sad experience is that most people (self included)in this country are pretty decent but suffer myopia regarding sectarianism in their own community (the corollary being a forensic ability to see it in the ‘other sort’).

    This thread is a case in point, I have no love of parades and having had to help friends (a mixed marriage)driven out of the neighbouring estate on an 11th night in 1994 as a pack of drunken thugs (half of whom were in the local band)threatened them I am more than a little sceptical about parades. But at the same time I know from speaking to them that for that for many of my neighbours there is no malace in the 12th just a wish to express their cultural identity.

    At the same time the sectarianism of some of my Catholic cousins who would rage in righteous anger about the OO but casually pillory people they have never met as bigots, rednecks, etc. is every bit as sickening.

    Maybe in the light of the fact that this thread is following such an appalling crime we might have half a chance if instead of just condemning crimes emerging from the other community we made twice the effort to stamp out such attitudes in our own community. As an Antrim Road boy I am under no illusions that too many people from both communities have been too quick cast the first stone and perhaps too slow to admit that their casual contempt of them’uns might just be part of the problem.

  • Token Dissent

    An awful, horrendous attack, and all right-thinking people’s thoughts will be with the boy and his family tonight.

    Sunningdale has stated the situation perfectly. Thanks to him/her for providing a dignified post, full of appropriate anger and frustration.

  • Mauds gone

    JP
    I agree – it shouldn’t be mooted that the orange order is abolished. With a history as diverse as that of this island, I think it is important to maintain a link to the ALL cultural aspects of Irish history. As the oo is an organisation in Ireland, it forms part of the unique Irish culture. The sectarians in the oo certainly lower the tone, and I would say to anyone who is a genuine and non-rascist member of the oo, to do their upmost to rid themselves of these dead weights, so that every Irish person in the 32 counties can enjoy summer time parades….

  • gareth mccord

    i think the real question is ” who cares enough to actually do something about it”?
    Words and sympathies are like flowers ,they wither and die!

  • Sunningdale

    Gareth I agree that anyone who knows who commits such a crime should notify the police. My point was that even those who don’t know who committed this or similar crimes still has a role in challenging the poisonous opinions of those in both communities that foster and encourage such hatred and then disown responsibility when the consequences are all too evident.

    The underlying truth in Northern Ireland is that words can hurt and even, particularly when they foster irrational hatred of anyone who is not from their own community.

  • Dewi

    Turgon

    “Thankyou; no really thank you. I do think you should seriously consider enrolling for a PhD with that sort of abiltiy to impartially critique and that rapier like intellect so ably demonstrated. May I be so presumptious as to call you Dr. Bluer”

    If those flags and bonfires are current then that’s pretty damn offensive and inflammatory and can’t help peace. Do u think such burnings should happen ??

  • matt

    Sectarianism is not a 50/50 problem….its 90/10…i think you will find that loyalists have committed most if not all sectarian murders in the last 10 years…they seem particularly fond of teenagers i think thats 3 in 2 years…go figure must be something to do with civil and religious liberties for all, celebrated at this time of year…however big hats off to the woman who shooed the scum off…5 grown men versus one woman is obviously not odds these pantpissers enjoy!

  • snakebrain

    Dewi

    The Fuck Micky Bo bonfire was outside Ballymena, in either Galgorm, Ahoghill or Cullybackey, I can’t remember which, and was very shortly after the death of Micky McIlveen, and so not current but not ancient history either. And yes, it is pretty inflammatory. I presume that was the intention. I can’t place the other. The Micky Bo flag was pretty roundly condemned at the time, especially since a few members of Ballymena Council are reputed to have attended that particular bonfire. I’m surprised you didn’t recognise it instantly.

    Turgon’s point, I assume, is that that is not representative of all Protestants. There are plenty who are inoffensive rational people who wish to enjoy themselves without unduly interfering with the lives of other residents of the country.

    Personally, I wish the 12th didn’t mean the whole country closing down so that those who wish to can celebrate their festival. I think it’s damn unfair for people to be forced to take time off work out of their paid holidays when it might not suit them to. And I wish the OO would pay for, and show some willingness towards, the inevitable clean-up afterwards.

    The issue of anti-social elements within the Protestant community is exactly that. Elements. Sure, they need to be clamped down on, and there isn’t enough will in that direction from the bodies leading the 12th celebrations, but they are a part of a bigger whole. It’s unfair to pretend that everybody out on the 12th is a baby-eating maniac; it’s just not true.

    That said, there is a problem of violence inside the Loyalist community in North Belfast which doesn’t have an obvious counterpart in the Nationalist community. There are obviously sectarian incidents on both sides, but these horrifically violent individual attacks are overwhelmingly a Loyalist phenomenon. My brother was attacked in a very similar manner and it’s no laughing matter; whatever can be done to stop them occuring should happen asap. I stand by my first comments in this thread about the prosecution of these offenders, it doesn’t happen anything like often enough, and I think it’s down to a lack of will within the police.

  • Comrade Stalin

    I’m sickened by people trying to suggest this attack was some kind of retaliation for some other events. Attacks on houses normally make the news, but the alleged attacks on Manor Street haven’t. And if this crew of five men armed with golf clubs are so tough, why couldn’t they go out and give hell when there were people actually attacking the house, rather than waiting for an innocent teenager to go walking past ? It’s just the usual opportunistic attack on an innocent person.

  • Since snakebrain has introduced me into this terrible discussion – claiming that I shall educate everyone about what happened to poor Niall Ferrin, as if everyone doesn’t know already – he is just the latest target of loyalist killers who have carried on in the tradition of John ‘Grug’ Gregg and his followers.

    Instead of telling everyone about what happened to their previous victims, especially Gavin Brett, I recommend that everyone, nationalist and loyalist alike,commit themselves totally to stopping these barbarous attacks without any quarter given, any possible justification of what has been done by someone in the past, etc.

    It is only by truly drawing a line against such behavior, no matter who does it, that it shall ever stop.

    And just to show again my true sentiments for all concerned, in case anyone has any doubts about them, let’s do it in the name of poor Michael Brett.

  • Sunningdale

    I suppose that I shouldn’t be surprised any more that an appeal for a little introspection and thought rather than the usual slanging was (after a small blip of rationality) overrun in the usual NI fashion by a battalion fueled by a self-satisfied moralistic sense of community superiority and armed with an ‘its all your sides’ fault’attitude.

    Still, at least according to Matt I can spend the evening deciding which 10% of my protestant relatives aren’t sectarian and which 10% of my catholic relatives are…..

    I dispair.

  • gareth mccord

    matt
    believe nothing what you hear and only half what you see.

  • Turgon

    Dewi,

    Snakebrain has pretty much answered your point better than I could have done. I enjoy taking part in various pretty harmless cultural things at this time of year. I do not have any desire to offend anyone except possibly musical purists by my limited musical ability.

    It really offends me that some anti social people form my “own side” at times make me embarrassed to be involved in my own culture. Of course my embarassment and distress is of no consequence besides the distress that poor young man and his family must be suffering.

    On a slightly more general note I wish more Prods would get involved in their culture especially in Belfast to help dilute out and maybe stop the more unpleasant things which happen. This thread is not the time or the place to discuss this in detail but I will suggest that the demonisation of unionist culture because of the utterly wicked actions of some of its practioners is not especially helpful in such a desire / aim.

    I cannot comment much on North Belfast other than to say it is very sad that to my mind by far the prettiest part of the town has its name unfairly dragged through the mud by the actions of a minority of its inhabitants.

  • confused

    In all the debate lets not forget the young lad who was viciously beaten and lets remember him and his family.
    The latest news is more hopeful with the hospital saying he is making progress and I hope this continues until he is fully recovered.

  • Dewi

    Snakebrain – I’m ceratin it’s not typical or representative – apologise 4 using word “inflammatory” didn’t think.
    The attackers last night I’m sure were not representative or typical either and none of the Unionist posters on here are “baby eating maniacs”.
    My point was that for society to allow such flags to be placed on bonfires is entirely intolerable and encourages such sectarian acts.

  • gareth mccord

    confused
    thats the main and most important post this topic will have. Maybe others will catch on?

  • Billy

    Sunningdale

    Just because facts are unpleasant doesn’t make them untrue.

    I don’t necessarily agree with everything that Matt says or the way he says it.

    However, during the “marching season” about 3 years ago, the late David Ervine was on Channel 4 news with someone from the SDLP debating such attacks.

    He kept using that great “loyalist” propaganga phrase ‘tit-fot-tat’. Unfortunately for him, Channel 4 had done their homework and had all the official statistics from the Police, Hospitals, Housing Executive etc.

    They clearly showed that, over a 5 year period, the ratio of attacks on Catholics to Protestants was more than 9 to 1.

    Ervine had to concede that it was hardly “tit for tat”.

    I condemn all these attacks from whatever source and I sincerely believe that the vast majority of decent Protestants do do also.

    However, the first step is solving any problem is the acquisition of accurate information.

    It is a statistical FACT that a much greater percentage of these attacks eminate from the “loyalist’ community.

  • joeCanuck

    Stop it now please folks.
    It doesn’t matter what the percentages are.
    One such attack is one too many.

  • Pounder

    The fact of the matter is that a 15 year old boy was attacked by grown men. Thats fucked up and no amount of whataboutery can change that. Think really hard about that wee fact before you make excuses for scum.

  • Udlah

    To get away from the whataboutery lets examine a few facts of the case. Here we have a 15 year old boy running about the streets at 11 o’clock at night, at an alleyway in an interface area whether the child in question be protestant, catholic, muslim, black, jewish whatever. The question that never seems to be asked where is the parental responsability here its the usual everybodys at fault PSNI,CCTV,Government for petes sake your child running about a notorious troublesome area half mile from his home at 11pm is there not an inkling that there may be issues closer to home.

  • Diluted Orange

    [i]It is a statistical FACT that a much greater percentage of these attacks eminate from the “loyalist’ community.[/i]

    This may well be the case, which whether it is or not, something needs to be done about it – on both sides. Something which you acknowledge is that there are attacks stemming from the Nationalist side too; finger-waving at loyalists isn’t going to relieve the decades of entrenched bitterness. This needs to be a 2 way process.

    Sinn Fein, for all their faults, are a working class party – they are organised on the ground and far better equipped to deal with community relations than the other main parties. In comparison, there is a distinct lack of local political leadership in working class Protestant communities; the DUP and the UUP have neglected their base support for more years than one cares to remember by pushing more and more for the middle class vote. Ian Paisley etc cannot stand up and proclaim anti-Catholic sentiments and ‘Never, Never, Never’ rhetoric as they have done in the past and then wash their hands of the inevitable ‘Billy Boy’ reaction amongst some impressionable loyalists. This kind of behaviour (i.e. whacking a child with a golf club) is not organic – throughout his chequered past Paisley has at times directly stirred up discontent in loyalist quarters so that he could reap the political capital. Some sort of ownership from the DUP needs to be taken for situations like those that regularly occur along the North Belfast interface.

    IMO the actions of the main Unionist parties are in direct contrast to Alex Kane’s assertion (in another thread) that Unionists need to go vote grabbing in the garden centres, so to speak, as I believe that this is pretty much all that they ever do. Where is Nigel Dodds in all of this? Should he not, as the local MP, be facilitating some sort of cross-community contact and reconciliation in his constituency?

    As I pointed out in my previous post, my view pretty much agrees with Sunningdale’s. I’m not from North Belfast but its fairly obvious that the situation there is beyond the joke and it’ll get worse over the coming week. It is currently home to some of the most vile sectarianism and stark division apparent anywhere in NI. Some sort of intervention from MLAs or the MP for the constituency is much needed and on Gerry Kelly’s part that shouldn’t be code for standing in front of the Ardoyne Shops side by side with the Shankill bomber next weekend.

  • Rory

    Instead of banning this or banning that as some contributors have urged I had thought that perhaps it might be a good idea if it was actually made illegal to launch vicious murderous assaults on innocent Catholic citizens. It has since been pointed out to me that this (seemingly popular) practice is already illegal.

    Shouldn’t someone tell the police?

  • dalek

    i have restrained myself from commenting and its been difficult but 60 comments down the line…the tempers been lost.

    Udlah …Why not come out and say he had it coming to him ?????

    you odious person…sick sad and confused. Grown men beat child with golf clubs and its the childs fault !!! FFS you need your head seeing to !!!

  • Pounder

    [b]#

    To get away from the whataboutery lets examine a few facts of the case. Here we have a 15 year old boy running about the streets at 11 o’clock at night, at an alleyway in an interface area whether the child in question be protestant, catholic, muslim, black, jewish whatever. The question that never seems to be asked where is the parental responsability here its the usual everybodys at fault PSNI,CCTV,Government for petes sake your child running about a notorious troublesome area half mile from his home at 11pm is there not an inkling that there may be issues closer to home.
    Posted by Udlah on Jul 03, 2007 @ 10:14 PM
    [/b]

    For a start it’s the summer holidays. Many teenagers are out and about at that time of night. You seem to be making assumptions that he was up to no good. Do you have evidence to back this up? Or are you just trying to creat a smoke screen? The fact of the matter is a young teenager was attacked by several adults with golf clubs, under no circumstance is that acceptable.

  • stephen

    It would strike me that what a lot of people are missing is the disgusting assault on a child.

    I hold very strong opinions about the situation in the north of ireland, but they pale into insignificance when held up to such horror.

    Whoever would do this to a child, (from whatever background) should be caught, tried and if found guilty, hung!

    Give us all something to unite around!

  • UFB

    No doubt these human offal are the same people that were abusing and threatening primary school children in the same area a few short years ago.

    Some of the posters on this thread have implied, by making unsubstantiated claims, that this attack was a result of nationalist attacks on houses in Manor St – that’s absolute bollocks. Prove me wrong and reveal your sources.

    The oft repeated ‘tit-for-tat’ scenario, and its inferred justification is simply not the case in north Belfast, I live in the area. No, the driving force behind such attacks is the same mindset behind the deaths of Daniel McColgan, Gerard Lawlor, Thomas Devlin, Gavin Brett, David Cupples and the attempted murder of Joe Murphy. Absolute sheer naked sectarianism.

    As far as I can remember July has been a month of caution and fear for any Catholic I know living in north Belfast. Having said that, I have worked with decent, considerate, tolerant people who were members of both the OO and the Black Perceptory. These people wanted to do nothing more than to walk through town on what they seen as their day out and head back to where they lived for a few jars, not wanting to trouble any of their fellow citizens on the way.

    One curious thing about the people that I mention though – they were very much in the minority of unionist people that I worked with in the sense that they didn’t go to bonfires.

    So, perhaps rather than banning all marches as some have suggested here, the culture of sectarianism could be traced to bonfires?. Maybe it’s the bonfires(along with the now ‘traditional’ loyalist firing party alongside the more convential under age drinking, chronic alcohol abuse, wanton violence, casual sex etc)that need to be looked at in order to eradicate sectarianism?.

  • snakebrain

    Dewi

    No worries, it’s just my girlfriend’s “one of them” and I have to watch my step, y’know?

    Seriously, my heart goes out to this kid and his family. As I said, I’ve seen the consequences of an attack like this and it’s not bloody nice. There’s nothing that can be said that could possibly justify this happening. I state this clearly because I’ve spent so much time debating the broader issues, and I don’t want to anyone to think I’ve lost sight of the central issue.

    However, I do think it’s important that we don’t have a knee-jerk reaction that ends up further damaging and dividing our society because of a few monsters that roam the streets. There’s also an issue with the police not making proper efforts to find and prosecute those who commit these crimes. There’s a further issue with management of the marching season by those who run it. Are we going to let these things destroy the possibility of a decent future?

    Udlah

    You must be crazy if you’re even suggesting this boy, or his family were in any way responsible for this attack. The only people who were responsible for this were those who perpetrated it.

  • Garcia

    Holy f*ck. He was out at 11pm???? Well that changes everything! That calls for getting his head caved in by savages with golf clubs! Then dragged down a road by a bit of wire round the neck!! Aye and he was a wee fenian too. Had it coming he did.

    Udlah, so f*cking what that he was out raking at near midnight, i did the same once upon a time but got grounded for it by my da – sectarian assault & brain damage is a tad extreme there eh…? No justification – no excuse.

  • johnny_be_good

    The only thing missing were the white gowns and burning cross!!

    Anyone trying to even explain or justify why this would happen are the reason why it happens!!

    “They’re just good ol’ boys”

  • Martin

    This thread should be preserved for future generations to see. Maybe in fifty years from now the story of a young boy being beaten and tortured by a group of grown men will provoke nothing but the outrage that it should. I feel genuinely depressed after reading this thread.

  • Garcia

    I’ve nothing more to say on this except that I hope young Niall makes a fully and speedy recovery. God bless.

  • blame the victim

    [i]To get away from the whataboutery lets examine a few facts of the case. Here we have a 15 year old boy running about the streets at 11 o’clock at night, at an alleyway in an interface area whether the child in question be protestant, catholic, muslim, black, jewish whatever. The question that never seems to be asked where is the parental responsability here its the usual everybodys at fault PSNI,CCTV,Government for petes sake your child running about a notorious troublesome area half mile from his home at 11pm is there not an inkling that there may be issues closer to home.[/i]

    Scraped better than you off my shoes.

  • Sean

    udlah

    I would call you scum, but that would be an insult to scum everywhere

    if i took a golf club to the head everytime i was out after eleven my head would have dimples

    These are the scum of the earth and it will speak volumes of the unionist community if they protect them

    the balls in your court unionists, can you put your money where your mouth is

  • Kevster

    To those who expressed their undiluted disgust with the brutes who subjected this small boy to their merciless bloodlust, thank you for restoring my faith that the years of senseless sectarian violence has not completely removed people from the values we share.

    To those who equivocated in their remarks, citing the hour the lad was out, how the actions of others somehow provoked this despicable act, I will pray that you search for something better inside yourself and conclude that it didn’t make a damn bit of difference what others did or how late it was.

    It is just plain wrong for grown men to beat a youngster with golf clubs and drag him about by a piece of wire around his neck. Full stop.

    Anyone who knows anything about these scum and doesn’t go to the peelers with that information is scum.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    confused: “For a start he did not justify this criminal act but simply tried to offer a reason why it took place and went on to say it was not right. ”

    As if there was a reason for for grown men to go gang-handed against a boy.

    DO: “What has the OO got to do with any of this?”

    They are “the reason for the season,” if you will. They provide the on-going excuse this time of year for Loyalist “kick the pope” bands to play their “party tunes,” whilst their fellow-travellers get potted and look for a child to beat upon.

  • francesco

    in the name of christ how can you drag down a road a wee chap with wire around his neck after breaking his skull with a golf club, what the world is coming to?

    sectarian attaks sectarian state!

  • I heartily agree, francesco, though I hardly think it would have been better treating any living soul in this fashion.

    My biggest complaints about those posts which stop short of this is that they engage in a kind of unionist historicism – an uncritical acceptance of the world as it is, as if it has some kind of traditional legitimacy for which they bear no responsibility

    These mindless killings, mostly of Catholics, have no legitimacy in any way, and everyone should not only denounce them, but to do everything they can to insure that they don’t happen again – especially see that their perpetrators are exposed, and prosecuted instead of just acting as if they are stark reminders of the past.

    They are disgusting experience of the present which should be stopped at all costs rather than recalling what has happened to Catholics and Protestants alike, as long as one can remember.

    It was this behavior which induced me to draw a line against too much effusive praise for Michael Brett’s reaction to his son’s senseless killing.

  • francesco

    i’d like to know if those brave grown men who attacked this bloke only beacuse he was a catholic with the favour of the dark like thiefs have any kind of regrets or if they have been receiving cheers and handshakes from their own community
    those involved in sectarian attaks are nothing but poor people with serious personal issues to face and should be put in prison for a long long time. They’re fucking useless for the future of ireland!

  • Mauds gone

    If these thugs really want to get into a fight, I know a few people who would be happy to oblige. Only thing is they aren’t children so it probably wouldn’t be any good…
    I think the bottom line is not what religion or political colour these animals are, the bottom line is that they are cowards who are willing to beat children up with golf clubs. If this happened in a domestic case, or away from the atmosphere in the 6 counties, nobody would make excuses for this sick behaviour, and everyone would wholly condemn it. Let’s not politicise these actions. Although (a certain breed of) loyalists are usually the culprits of such attacks, don’t take the blame for this atrocity away from the individuals who carried it out. They are child beaters. To make them out to be anything else is giving them some kind of political arena which they don’t deserve.
    My best wishes to the victim and his family. Beir bua.

  • Gerry and Hugh

    Ahhh, the politics of condemnation! Its a pity a lot of nationalists weren’t as vocal over the past 25 years or so……..

  • francesco

    Ahhh, the politics of condemnation! Its a pity a lot of nationalists weren’t as vocal over the past 25 years or so……..

    they were indeed!

  • No Dozer

    I’m absolutely horrified at the barbarity of the people who carried out the attack on this young lad. It is obvious that they didn’t care what damage they would cause to the boy or whether he lived or died. These people need to be caught and locked up for a long time without remission.

    I find it sad that people are blaming the O.O. for this attack. I’m not a member of the order and certainly don’t speak for them but I’m sure the vast majority of members especially the christian members would also be disgusted by the actions of these sick people.

    The problem with our so called christian country is that ( in my opinion)there are people who without knowing it worship satan. These people fall into this category along with people who carried out atrocities like Darkley, Sean Grahams bookies,Shankill bombing,Greysteel, Tee-bane, Bayardo,Bloody Sunday, Bloody Friday,Shankill Butcher killings ,Balmoral Showrooms, Robert McCartney murder. We need to unite and stand up to these people. Look at what has happen in West Belfast over the past year as satanists murder and petrol people out of their homes. All violence is wrong and shold be condemned without reservation. People should be imprisoned for a long time and when released if unrepentive should be shunned by all decent people and not treated as heroes.

  • Gilbert Jeannon

    No Dozer

    “Devil is dead
    Devil is dead
    Some say the Devil is dead
    And buried in Killarney.
    I say he rose again
    I say he rose again
    I say he rose again
    And joined the British Army.”

  • Mauds gone

    Any word on how the wee lad is doing?

  • Sean

    No Maud this is unionist violence on a catholic so its already been dropped as a news story.

    If had been the other way around we would here screaming from the collective roof tops of the news litter

  • Kevster

    Gerry and Hugh,
    You bring up “The politics of condemnation”? What is that about? There is, in my view, absolutely no political content in either what these men did or in others condemning them.

    I submit, moreover, that to treat an instance like this as a political issue is stupid. What does it matter what the politics of the boy or these so-called men are?

  • peadiddy

    @snakebrain

    “Personally, I wish the 12th didn’t mean the whole country closing down so that those who wish to can celebrate their festival. I think it’s damn unfair for people to be forced to take time off work out of their paid holidays when it might not suit them to.”

    I think that’s a wee bit silly. It’s a bank holiday. Since we have n bank holidays a year it makes sense to have one on the 12th rather than some of the meaningless dates that other bank holidays fall.

  • peadiddy

    @Dewi

    “My point was that for society to allow such flags to be placed on bonfires is entirely intolerable and encourages such sectarian acts.”

    As Mrs T once said there is no such thing as society. Saying it’s the responsibility of “society” to remove it is tantamount to saying that it’s no-ones responsibility. So if you want to be constructive then be specific.

    Also, while not wishing to invoke the whataboutery genie I’m sure you’re well aware that I could either google up or just drive out with my digital camera and take snaps of numerous walls with K.A.H. graffitied on them.

  • AYE RIGHT

    Aye, sure it was completely unprovoked. Just like all those ‘poor wee lads’ hit by plastics were getting a pint of milk at four in the morning for their Ma’s – and not attempting to murder police officers.

  • Dewi

    peadiddy

    Top be specific the PSNI should remove any such symbols. – and the “community” should help

  • Dewi

    And if there are walls with K.A.H on them report them and get rid of them.

  • Sean

    aye right you are just scum

  • snakebrain

    peadiddy

    I’m not just talking about the 12th day. A lot of businesses close for the 12th fortnight, or at least a week. The building industry shuts down pretty much completely, amongst others. It’s fair enough to be a little riled if you have to use up holidays in that period that you’d rather use at a different time.

  • peadiddy

    snakebrain

    “I’m not just talking about the 12th day. A lot of businesses close for the 12th fortnight, or at least a week. The building industry shuts down pretty much completely, amongst others. It’s fair enough to be a little riled if you have to use up holidays in that period that you’d rather use at a different time.”

    Now you’re being ridiculous. If a business closes for a week then that’s it’s choice, nobody is forcing it to do so. I find it hard to believe that you don’t have a sectarian agenda here.

  • jpeters

    Aye Right

    IF you have anything specific to add some new factual detail to back up your assertion please provide it

    persomally i find your remark disgusting

  • snakebrain

    peadiddy

    it’s not the biggest issue in the country, but it’s not the employees choice either. And don’t give me some line about they can choose where they work.

  • Democratic

    “And if there are walls with K.A.H on them report them and get rid of them” There are many friend (and worse) especially around Glengormley where I live – no IF about it. Sectarianism exists both ways – believe it – I find it difficult to believe you haven’t seen it yourself.
    Perhaps as you quite rightly suggested about the the bonfires and loyalist flags – the community from which the budding graffiti artists spawn should take the offensive rubbish from their local shopfronts and gable walls – without the intervention of those to whom this sort of crap is aimed at having to do it themselves – only fair using your previous reasoning I think-and if everyone did the same we’d all be flying as it were.

  • Personally, I wish the 12th didn’t mean the whole country closing down so that those who wish to can celebrate their festival.

    I think it’s great. It means I can be part of that great event of communal belonging, the Middle Class Taig exodus for the 12th and enjoy the best of British with friends in the South of England while avoiding the worst of British in North Belfast. Abolish that holiday? I’d rather take an extra day for it.

    As for the scum who beat up the kid in Manor Street, why are they still walking the streets? Even if the cops couldn’t make charges stick at this stage, it would surely be worth taking them in for questioning to keep them off the streets until the twelfth is over and done with.

    It’s incidents like this that almost make me regret that flogging was abolished.

  • Sean

    Sammy maybe they will get lifted when they show at the police station to turn in the keys as per request