Crossing the divide to learn about ‘themmums’ marches…


THE past few days have seen members of one ‘side’ getting up close and personal with the other ‘side’s’ parading culture. Loyalist victims’ campaigner Willie Frazer attended last weekend’s republican hunger strike commemoration (which he was less than impressed with), while UDA leaders Jackie McDonald and Colin Halliday observed a parade by the Ancient Order of Hibernians in Kilkeel (see pic). Also crossing the divide, a number of ex-IRA prisoners paid a visit to the Apprentice Boys’ museum in Londonderry. The DUP’s Gregory Campbell, perhaps unfairly, hedges his bets on the value of the visit until he sees any outcome. Campbell doesn’t see the point of risk-taking, as it could (in his eyes) backfire. However, the risks taken by the Boys have also reaped dividends in recent years.

  • desert martian man

    Is that the new Northern Ireland Tracksuit that Jackie’s wearing?

    What a role model for young fans.

  • Belfast Gonzo

    I think it is a NI trackie. Beats the shell suit though.

  • Dawkins

    Forget Paris, forget Milan. Kilkeel is the new style capital of the world.

    Good to see these “hands across the divide” gestures. Only good can come of them … I think.

  • moonshine

    Word was buzzing round Kilkeel all day that Jackie was up along with his Dromore and Banbridge friends. It was some sight for the locals as they apparently wandered round the place chatting to everyone. Strange times indeed.

  • slug

    “which he was less than impressed with”

    *shakes head* And he’s a journalist?

  • Cromwell

    Are tracksuits & shell suits not one & the same?

    So what if he’s wearing a Norn Iron tracksuit Martian, whats that got to do with anything?

    Wee Marty in his fly fishing gear? What an example to impressionable young Pike, Big Gerry in Donegal Tweed, what an example to Sheep.

  • The Dubliner

    slug, it’s an informal Blog; not the Times Literary Supplement.

    “And when I hear republicans saying they want to talk about the future nature of ‘an agreed Ireland’, I am even less convinced of their motives.” – Gregory Campbell

    The Shinners aren’t negotiators on behalf of the Irish government, nor do they have a mandate from the southern electorate that would entitle them to any input into the process other than Dial debates, so I don’t know why Mr Campbell would bother entertaining their delusions in that regard. Apart from that, unity isn’t even on the Irish political agenda – and won’t be for the foreseeable future.

    In terms of NI, it can’t do any harm for the hardliners to think outside of their boxes. (Apology to slug for the use of idiom).

  • highfield

    Is that the new Northern Ireland Tracksuit that Jackie’s wearing?

    Is that why uff flags were put alongside our wee country flags during the 12th ?

  • Cromwell

    Dub,

    One of the problems in NI is some of the hardliners spend far too log “out of their boxes” if you get the vernacular!!!

  • Harry

    Nationalists don’t have parades like unionists do, though that doesn’t stop unionists from pretending this is a quid pro quo situation. The same as the Irish language – being spoken for almost 2500 years with an enormously rich literature and judicial code associated with it – is in no way comparable to Ulster-Scots; doesn’t stop unionists from pretending the two are co-equal and hence related in a quid pro quo sort of way.

    Unionists are straining at a pretence of cultural equivalence that simply doesn’t exist and are doing so for political not cultural reasons and to justify their idea that n. ireland is a self-contained state with a majority community and a minority community, instead of what it really is; a corral enclosing a bunch of colonial supremacists and a considerable number of the natives, the culture of the latter spreading across the whole island and into the far reaches of time in tandem with the rest of their people from whom they have been cut off.

    Who – really – is convinced by this pretence?

  • Cromwell

    Oh bejasus Harry, yer boiler is most definetly busted so it is.

  • Cromwell

    Me=Colonial supremacist.

    Harry=Cultural imperialist.

  • Dawkins

    Harry,

    “… the culture of the latter spreading across the whole island and into the far reaches of time in tandem with the rest of their people…”

    How every lyrical!

  • gerry

    slow progress !!

    [edited link – moderator]

  • Turgon

    Harry,

    “bunch of colonial supremacists ”

    Thankyou for that insight. I had not realised I was a colonial supremacist. I presume this is a bad thing. My apologies for being one.

    Now after many years I can understand why the IRA had to murder so many memebers of my community.

    Since the IRA have stopped and I have only now come to the realisation of my wickedness (thanks to your valuable contribution) what I am to do? How can I cleanse my self (and my family) of this awful condition and indeed where my I go to stop being such an awful colonial supremacist? Please help me, you have enlightened me to my evil but shown me no hope of remedying my awfullness. Am I condemned to spend my whole life in this awful state?

  • Harry

    I don’t know why you’re talking abut the IRA, I never mentioned the IRA. As for the rest of it, I would have thought I was pointing out the simple truth, something so transparently obvious as to be beyond argument. What – specifically – do you find incorrect about what I stated?

  • Ulster McNulty

    “Crossing the divide to learn about ‘themmums’ marches…”

    To me this would read better if it was rendered:

    “Crossing the divide to learn about ‘themmunsziz’ marches…”

  • Sean

    Well Harry it all comes down to the fact that they do not recognize that their community has ever done anything wrong and adding to that they also believe their community is not responsible for the paramilitary killers they spawned.

    I would add something specific about unionists but as I am already on the line its best to walk carefully but suffice it to say they believe themself part of the elite prods that divorce themselves from any and all violence that has occured because of course the big houses work as good insulators

  • Belfast Gonzo

    McNulty

    You are quite correct. Apologies for the poor grammar!

    I’m still learning this Belfast lingo. For example, it wasn’t until recently that I discovered that ‘Don’t’ actually has two syllables – Don’tn’t – and that ‘fillum’ only has one.

    One day this country boy will ‘get’ it…

  • Turgon

    Harry,

    I mentioned the IRA as your “clonial supremicist” argument is at least as simplistic as anything ever used by the IRA during the troubles. Now they have a more subtle analysis as part of the rewriting history / quarter truth process.

    In addition it was just this sort of analysis used by the likes of Noraid to justify their support of terrorism. Calling people “colonial supremicists” and acusing them or corraling people are the sort of terms which allow some to justify violence and murder against the “colonial supremicists”.

    Might I ask if you are from Northern Ireland or have you merely viewed my and my fellow unionists colonial supremecy from afar?

    But I am forgetting myself, I have had a Damascus road type convertion to realising the sheer evil of my colonial supremecy. What do you propose I and people like me do now in order to redress this ancient wrong which we have perpetrated against the nationalist people of Ireland? Is there any hope for me / us?

  • agh

    Nothing to do with this thread at all, but I was wondering why no-one has mentioned the SDLP former mayor of larne calling a DUP disabled councilor ‘stumpy’
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/6949453.stm

    I’m sure if the insult was directed by the DUP, there would be a thread with 200 odd replies on it. Are the SDLP a no-go topic on slugger?

  • turgon
    the jews of the OT would rent their garments, as a means of self-chastisement and ritual purification.
    You tell us?

  • Harry

    “What do you propose I and people like me do now in order to redress this ancient wrong which we have perpetrated against the nationalist people of Ireland? Is there any hope for me / us?”
    Turgon

    Well, for a start you could support the passing of legislation to bring about rights for Irish speakers and the Irish language throughout n. ireland.

    Secondly you could address the fact that the old stormont regime was based on sectarianism and that it was this in large part that gave rise to the troubles.

    Thirdly you could address the fact that unionists are, strictly speaking, not just a minority within Ireland but would have been a minority in n. ireland itself already had they not instituted an economic regime that forced large numbers of nationalists to leave in order to find economic opportunities. In other words you could address the fact that the unionist ‘majority’ (and hence veto) is based upon an injustice which to this very day is being used by unionists to justify their position, a position that is considerably less substantial than unionists would have us believe.

    Fourthly you could address the fact that, in light of the foregoing, the fundamental nature of unionism is to maintain a link with britain through the threat of violence and through conspiring with british strategic interests to become armed precisly in order to threaten this violence.

    Fifthly you could admit, in light of the foregoing, that the true place for unionists in Ireland is as a national minority within a united ireland and that they should take their place within such a polity without further ado.

    Finally you could discuss, in light of the foregoing and in light of unionists’ refusal nonetheless to take their rightful place as a national minority, how such a refusal and reliance on arms in the last instance to maintain their position constitutes what any objective observer would call ‘supremacy’.

  • Dewi

    Cool down all – Wales won a Rugby game – does not happen often – celebrate with your celtic cousins….

  • Turgon:

    [i]”Now after many years I can understand why the IRA had to murder so many memebers of my community.”[/i]

    Now, you might explain to us just why your communtiy was responsible for the murder of twice as many members of the other communtuy. You seem to forget that the real terrorists in NI were HMG and the unionist paramilitaries they supported and which unionists approved by their deafening silence.

    The unionist paramilitaries killed 873 civilians and the security forces another 190 for a total of 1.063 civilians whose blood is on the hands of YOUR community. The republican paramiliataries, all combined, killed some 738 civilians. Of Which the Provisional IRA killed 517.

    So, if anyone has any complaints about the murders in NI during the Troubles, you really should listen to the complaints of the nationalist/Irish/Catholic community instead of ignoring them with outlandish propaganda.

    I suggest that you clean out your own house instead of complaining about others’ houses.

  • Turgon

    Bob McGowan,

    Ah you have returned with the single transferrable post.

    I asked these questions of you a long time ago but you never answered them.

    1). Do retired members of the security forces killed count as murders?

    2). Does the killing of those whose crime was selling things like Mars bars to the security forces merit inclusion as a “murder”?

    3). Does killing wives, husbands, children of those in the security forces count as murder?

    4). Does killing members of the security forces who were off duty count as murder?

    5). Does killing judges count as murder?

    6). Does killing unionist politicians count as murder?

    7). Were those members of the IRA killed whilst trying themselves to kill members of the security forces murdered?

    Then since you are the doyen of arbitary decisions regarding who murdered / killed whom let us have some specifics

    Was Marie Wilson murdered?
    Was Douglas Derring murdered?

    I doubt we will get much sensible from you regarding this and if by chance we get honest answers we can all jusge the validity of your categorisations

  • Dawkins

    Agh,

    “Nothing to do with this thread at all, but I was wondering why no-one has mentioned the SDLP former mayor of larne calling a DUP disabled councilor ‘stumpy’”

    And did you see the cut of the guy? Jeeze.

    What should one call him? Fatty, Tubby, Piggy, Lardy?

    Peeps who live in glasshouses etc…

  • agh

    ‘The unionist paramilitaries killed 873 civilians and the security forces another 190 for a total of 1.063 civilians whose blood is on the hands of YOUR community. The republican paramiliataries, all combined, killed some 738 civilians. Of Which the Provisional IRA killed 517. ‘

    source? wilkepedia?? via vatican perhaps lol

  • Dawkins

    Parsival,

    “the jews of the OT would rent their garments, as a means of self-chastisement and ritual purification.”

    I believe this is how the dress-hire business got started: by a couple of enterprising Jews in the Garment District of old Jerusalem.

  • observer

    The same as the Irish language – being spoken for almost 2500 years with an enormously rich literature and judicial code associated with it –

    how come the REAL irish , those in Ireland, dont even bother speaking this shite?

    when was teh last time you heard the irish prime minister speak Irish?, Is Corrie watched in Irish or english?
    Is Man Utd manages commentated in Irish or english?

    Nuff said

  • observer

    You seem to forget that the real terrorists in NI were HMG and the unionist paramilitaries they supported and which unionists approved by their deafening silence. –

    bob its catholics that repeatedly voted for the IRA in elections. Catholics all across the province have the blood of 40 years on their hands.

    Unionists repeatedly rejected loyalists at the ballot box, and the RUC arrested and convicted more loyalists terrorists that repulicans.

  • Cahal

    observer
    A lot of Irish people can’t even seem to master English, as you have so amusingly proved.

  • observer

    #

    observer
    A lot of Irish people can’t even seem to master English, as you have so amusingly proved.
    Posted by Cahal on Aug 18, 2007 @ 08:50 PM

    So Cahal, when was the last time Bertie Ahern spoke in Irish? How many TDS speak in Irish in the Dail?

    It the Irish dont bother using this dead languauge why should the Oirish ?

  • chewnic

    Observer,
    The vast majority of paramilitary killings over the last few years have been perpetrated by loyalists? Do you condemn all Protestants as collectively guilty on the back of terrorist murders now being exclusively carried out by killers from that community?

  • observer

    Observer,
    The vast majority of paramilitary killings over the last few years have been perpetrated by loyalists? Do you condemn all Protestants as collectively guilty on the back of terrorist murders now being exclusively carried out by killers from that community?
    Posted by chewnic on Aug 18, 2007 @ 09:00 PM

    Chewnic as mentioned, its not protestants who are voting for terrorits, its catholics

    Also, as mentioned, more loyalists have been arrested and convicted for terrorist crimes than republican.

    As this board has shown, catholics have no shame in their part of the protestant/british/unionist slaughter than went on here

  • Cahal

    observer

    “So Cahal, when was the last time Bertie Ahern spoke in Irish? How many TDS speak in Irish in the Dail?”

    I really don’t know. I’ve never followed Bertie around. Have you stalked many politicians yourself?

    “It the Irish dont bother using this dead languauge why should the Oirish ?”

    I don’t know what this means. It seems like an incomprehensible sentence you constructed in order to arbitrarily insert the derogatory word ‘Oirish’ somewhere. Oh well. Good luck with the whole anti-Irish uber-prod thing. Although it’s all a bit pre-GFA.

  • Turgon

    Harry,

    Okay let us take your demands in order.

    1). Irish Language Rights. Well as far as I know people can speak Irish if they want. Should they be allowed to demand to correspond with public bodies in Irish, I remain to be convinced.

    2). Yes Stormont involved significant sectarianism and was at fault. Was it their fault that the IRA began killing people; I suspect not. Was sectarian behaviour by the state acceptable; No. How widespread was it, I do not know we can argue about it but yes it seems to have been quite widespread. Was I personally responsible for it. Well let me see I was a toddler when Stormont was suspended.

    3-6). Let us take these all together. When was Ireland united. By the British (well English actually) in the middle ages and afterwards. Was it united before? Does anyone know and if it was what relevance has this fact; none.
    The true place for unionists is in a united Ireland. well last I saw the people of the whole island of Ireland voted that the consent of the people of Northern Ireland was required for a united Ireland. Maybe you do not accept the verdict of the people of Ireland?

    In terms of the reliance on arms, yes there are issues about 1912 but I was a bit younger than a toddler then as I suspect most people here were. Will I condemn the UVF of 1912, well no if that makes me an evil bigot then so be it. Will you condemn the 1916 Easter rising?

    Now can you answer me, will you accept that the IRA waged a sectarian campaign against protestants? And in this perfect united Ireland of yours must I accept being irish, if I do not / cannot? And by the way just in chat are you from the island of Ireland?

    Parcifal,
    I much prefer debating with someone with a sense of humour. Should I rent my garments and put ash on my head? That might help but since I have no webcam I cannot post it to you. Will you accept my word for it? (ripping sounds).

  • Dewi

    Specifically turgon – what’s the big deal about an Irish Language Act – it’s only a bunch of letters on signs – why are u so pissed off ? Embrace it mun !

  • Stephen

    Whilst looking at and agreeing with a lot of what harry has posted. I feel that those of us of a republican/nationalist belief, do not sometimes allow our fellow irishmen the opportunity to understand our views.

    I do not ever try to tar the children with the sins of their fathers ( I do not mean this literally), Cromwell was a murderer, not the present head of the british government today. (unless you count iraq).

    However it is obvious and I would hope beyond argument that when irish families in tyrone and armagh etc can say “that was our land before the invader arrived”. This is not subject to interpretation, it is the truth. you may disagree about the benefits of the occupation, but you cannot say that it did not happen

  • observer

    However it is obvious and I would hope beyond argument that when irish families in tyrone and armagh etc can say “that was our land before the invader arrived”. –

    and whose land was it before their forefathers murdered for it?

  • chewnic

    Why didn’t you answer the question, Observer?

    On second thoughts, I think I already know why not…

    Thanks for that.

  • Reader

    Stephen: However it is obvious and I would hope beyond argument that when irish families in tyrone and armagh etc can say “that was our land before the invader arrived”.
    How was it their land? The vast majority of people back then were extremely insecure tenants. And after 800 years of intermarriage, and especially in the last 300, what does ‘our’ actually mean? When you talk about ‘irish families’ – are you going by surname? religion? politics? Can an old Limerick family wave their hands over a patch of Armagh and make the same speech?

  • Turgon

    Stephen,

    Well subtle and polite but “that was our land before the invader arrived”. This is not subject to interpretation, it is the truth. you may disagree about the benefits of the occupation, but you cannot say that it did not happen”

    Well the small amount of land we own in South Londonderry was bought by my parents from a Protestant.
    My wife has a large number of relatives most of whom are Co. Fermanagh farmers.

    What do you want done about this. How can we know who owned the land 300 years ago. Do you want it back? Who should get it? Should they get compensation? Is this not just more subtle MOPEry?

    I trust you do not think it was worth killing anyone over now, nor has been for a few centuries

  • Reader

    Harry: Thirdly you could address the fact that unionists are, strictly speaking, not just a minority within Ireland but would have been a minority in n. ireland itself already had they not instituted an economic regime that forced large numbers of nationalists to leave in order to find economic opportunities.
    Isn’t that exactly the wrong way round? Whenever you see a potted biography of a nationalist politician half the time it seems their daddy came from the Free State to Northern Ireland. Maybe the South wasn’t exactly a land of milk and honey either. And was it only Nordies that build England’s motorways? Surely not!

  • observer

    chewnic, read it again , slowly

    Catholics support terrorists, they VOTE FOR THEM
    Protestants dont
    Loyalists and republican terrorists should be hung until dead… simple enough ?

  • Turgon

    Dewi,

    I have said before I am not unpersuadable on Irish. There are a list of problems.

    Remember that we were told that every word spoken in Irish is a shot fired in the cause of Irish freedom (Danny Morrison I believe).

    The only times I heard Irish as a child was on TV at the funerals of dead terrorists or after a SF election victory.

    At Queen’s Irish signs were used to mark out territory. Remember a team of independent consultants was eventually required to demand their removal. One of the first times I spoke at QUBSU I was shouted down for proposing multi lingual signs.

    The posters who come on here demanding Irish signs etc. are in general hardly a great advert for Irish as a non sectarian language we can all enjoy.

    As I say I am not unpersuadable. If I was in Wales I would be very keen on Welsh. I am so rubbish at languages I would fail to learn it but I could easily imagine sending the children to a Welsh medium nursery / school.

  • Prince Eoghan

    >>Now can you answer me, will you accept that the IRA waged a sectarian campaign against protestants?<< Certainly not! The IRA were culpable in targeting Protestants on a small number of occasions relative to all of the operations carried out. This small number (one should be considered one too many) of occasions should not be used as a defining characteristic of a campaign overwhelmingly carried on against the British occupation forces. Would the British army's campaign in Ireland be deigned a sectarian campaign against Catholics? Considering the considerable sway that they held with their proxies in the legal and illegal british militia's like the UVF/RUC/UDA/UDR etc. Also their own actions on bloody sunday and other often indiscriminate shootings of innocent Catholics could be viewed the same way.

  • joeCanuck

    Quite some time ago at a public meeting, some man posed a question, to our former Prime Minister Brian Faulkner, in Irish. Quite to the surprise of the guy who thought he was being a smart ass, Faulkner replied in perfect Irish. He had been educated in Dublin and was totally fluent.

  • Turgon

    This is all getting a bit heated. Can I tell a slightly amusing story about one of the languages I have very little command of (other than English which I know I have little command of).

    Quite a number of years ago I briefly did some volunteer work in Africa. When in Nairobi we worked out that the street hawkers did not bother hasselling the white Kenyans and ex pat aid workers.

    Hence, we all wore trousers rather than jeans or shorts, shirts not teeshirts. When sellers assailed us with Jambo (Hi) we gave the formal Swahili answer Musori sana (very fine). They practically always then ignored us as they wrongly presumed we were local whites and not interested in buying tourist stuff.

    I just though a bit of light relief was called for unless someone wants to call me a racist.

  • Rory

    I was intrigued to learn that the AOH could still muster enough support for a parade in the North and even more so that a notable one seems to have just taken place in Kilkeel. Personal connections sharpen my sense of wanting to know more, but I do not have a subscription to the Irish News and wonder where I might learn “further and better details, as m’learned friends would have it.

    The reasons for my my particular interest are these: My great-grandmother on the maternal side was a fisherman’s widow from Kilkeel. My maternal grandfather, James “Jimmy” Carr the husband of a daughter of the Kilkeel fisherman’s widow, died at Mons in the early days of WW1 within short days of his call-up. His brother, my great uncle, Hamill Carr (please note the double consonants – he was decidedly not Hannibal’s father) survived the war but lost an eye and thereafter wore an eyepatch. He returned to live in Downpatrick where he became a staunch Hib.

    After a time (I presume post 1919 or certainly after 1921 the AOH were banned from parading on August 15th). The first year of the ban “Hammy” as he was known led the parade in defiance of the law, was arrested and spent a month in Crumlin Road gaol. Every year thereafter the RUC District Inspector, DI “Tail Light” Murphy (from the little red bicycle lamp that was worn at night at the bottom of his blacktorn stick, which was a badge of his office and with which he tapped his approach to his constables on his nightime rounds) would visit Hammy in the week preceding the “15th” and warn him not to march. And every year Hammy would lead the march and every year he was arrested and sent off to “the Crum” for a month. A cheering crowd would wave him off at Downpatrick station as he was boarded to head towards “durance vile” and another cheering crowd would greet him as he returned home a month later.

    And that is the legend that, since a boy, I have had of one side of my family that contains references both to Kilkeel and the Hibs. There is much more that follows but you’ll have to wait for the blockbuster novelised biography or wait for the movie.

    My grandfather, Jimmy, is mentioned on the Downpatrick War Memorial and in War Office records but poor Hammy has no memorial neither in stone nor in print. May this, my poor record, serve as his epitath and may he have led his little angel band of Hibs in heaven on Wednesday and may “Tail Light” too have been there to stand on and observe, and gently smile.

  • observer… do grow up old chap

    Turgon I dug this out for you 🙂

    And the afternoon, the evening, sleeps so peacefully!
    Smoothed by long fingers,
    Asleep … tired … or it malingers,
    Stretched on the floor, here beside you and me.
    Should I, after tea and cakes and ices,
    Have the strength to force the moment to its crisis?

    But though I have wept and fasted, wept and prayed,
    Though I have seen my head (grown slightly bald) brought in upon a platter,

    I am no prophet – and here’s no great matter;
    I have seen the moment of my greatness flicker,
    And I have seen the eternal Footman hold my coat, and snicker,
    And in short, I was afraid.

    Love song of J.Alfred Prufrock

  • Turgon

    Parcifal,

    Thankyou.

    I do not like the slightly bald bit as it is happening to me along with a bit of greying. Time for new 18 year old wife, sports car (will have to be foreign as no British ones left) and similar.

    Okay I have not enough money for sports car, no 18 year old would have me and I still adore Elenwe, though she is a bit grumpy tonight. The only option is bed. Goodnight.

    Sorry to waste bandwidth Mick though I still do not really understand what it is.

  • Pounder

    This thread makes me sad. This is a good chance for an understanding about the “other side” instead the usual suspects and a few new names come in with the usual crap. Live cannot be converted into points scoring and those of you who are trying should be ashamed of yourselves.

    While it could be said that the Nationalist community voted in terrorists the Unionist side aren’t much better. Paisley never took up the gun himself but he was more than happy to associate with those who did. To manipulate them when it suited them then abandon them so he could claim his conscience was clean. And on the other hand if Adams and McGuinness are so proud of what the PIRA fought for why do they so strongly deny ever being members? For all their apparent difference Unionist and Nationalist are more alike then they want to think about.

  • Sean

    2). Yes Stormont involved significant sectarianism and was at fault. Was it their fault that the IRA began killing people; I suspect not. Was sectarian behaviour by the state acceptable; No. How widespread was it, I do not know we can argue about it but yes it seems to have been quite widespread. Was I personally responsible for it. Well let me see I was a toddler when Stormont was suspended.

    Typical big house prod “not mu fault” lies and obfuscation

    In terms of the reliance on arms, yes there are issues about 1912 but I was a bit younger than a toddler then as I suspect most people here were. Will I condemn the UVF of 1912, well no if that makes me an evil bigot then so be it. Will you condemn the 1916 Easter rising?

    See above replyh

    Now can you answer me, will you accept that the IRA waged a sectarian campaign against protestants? And in this perfect united Ireland of yours must I accept being irish, if I do not / cannot? And by the way just in chat are you from the island of Ireland

    No the IRA waged a political campain the fact that it is almost universally against protestants is infact proof that the protestants were sectarian bigots

    I know we seem to be getting along Turgon and I respect your right to hold your own strong beliefs but I have to call Bollocks where bollock exists as per my own strong beliefs

  • Turgon:

    An intersting list of questions but I suggest that you do your own research and tell us why Sutton’s analyses are wrong in specific instances and also tell us exactly how much these “errors” affect the overall analysis. in the meantime, I suggest that your questions are no more than desperate attempts to deny the bloody record of the security forces and the paramilitaries whom those same security forces treated as allies in the Troubles.

    Sutton has determined the status of each victim included in his analysis. If you have a problem with that in individual cases, let’s hear them and find out just how many victims to whose classification you object. Rhetorical questions without bases in fact are really nothing more than propaganda.

    Secondly, I suggest your claim that the PIRA was widely supported by the Irish/Catholic/nationalist community does not have much basis in fact. Sinn Fein received little electoral support as long as it continued its campaign and the SDLP – which strongly criticized and condemned the violence of both sides – had widespread support in that same community. On the other hand, the unionist parties condemned republican violence but ignored the illegal violence of the security forces and the unionist paramilitaries.

    But, until and unless you can demonstrate just how the errors you allege Sutton made affects the overall damning picture that emerges from his study, all your questions are, it seems to me, merely dodges to avoid addressing the real issue — the murderous terrorist campaign waged by the security forces and the unionist paramilitaries.

  • Shane L

    Hate to see all the informal gestures of goodwill go to diatrabe. Now see reconciliation at its hardest. It’s not hard enough to speak the words, but to show your face? At least some on both sides are trying. And don’t doubt they have taken risks to do it.

  • Dewi

    Rory – that was a wonderful tail – I can just see the scene of Mr Carr beaming as he was carted off to jail. “Tail-light” Murphy indeed !
    Pounder – McGuiness had admitted IRA membership – I, also, don’t understand why Adams does not.

  • Dewi

    Mixing me tail’s up – first should have read tale

  • Turgon

    Bob McGowan,

    So professor for once you have stuck around.

    “I suggest your claim that the PIRA was widely supported by the Irish/Catholic/nationalist community does not have much basis in fact. ”

    On which post did I make the above claim?

    Turning to the rest of your post, I am well aware of the Sutton analysis. If you look on the CAIN web site you will not find the term “murder”. Sutton merely provides lists of deaths and the status of those killed he makes no comment on whether or not they were murdered. It is only in your mind that you make those distinctions.

    You can pervert the statistics all you want but I put the following to you regarding your pseudo analysis.

    Any present member of the security forces killed by the IRA was not murdered in your analysis.

    Any member of the security forces killed off duty was not murdered in your analysis.

    Any person retired from the security forces who was killed was not murdered in your analysis

    Any person who was a contractor to the security forces or who provided them with any service whatsoever who was killed was not murdered in your analysis.

    Any unionist politicians killed were not murdered in your analysis

    Members of the British army killed in mainland GB and Europe were not murdered in your analysis

    Members of the judiciary killed were not murdered in your analysis

    Members of the mainland police force killed were not murdered in your analysis

    Members of the IRA killed by the IRA were not murdered in your analysis

    Members of the nationalist community killed as informers etc. were not murdered in your analysis

    Relatives of members of the security forces killed whilst attacking the security force member may well not have been murdered in your analysis.

    Were members of the IRA killed attacking security force personal murdered?

    As to my views on loyalist paramilitaries (unionist paramilitaries as you like to call them) I would suggest that most posters here know them and will, if asked tell you, the same goes for episodes of collusion.

    My real problem with you is this pseudo intellectual analysis totally lacking in morals or indeed any real understanding of what happened here. Furthermore your only contribution to debate is this endless accusation without any explanation of your methodology. You might know that any scientific analysis requires explanation of the methodology; so since you are making the claims re murders you show me the methodology of your pseudo science. I doubt you will give me the answers to any of the above but one more question. Have you ever been to Northern Ireland professor?

  • confused

    To Bob McGowan
    You say there is little or no evidence to suggest the catholic/nationalist community supported PIRA.
    I think you are very wrong.
    In one constituency over 29,000 catholc/Nationalsts voted for the officer commanding PIRA——-namely MR B Sands.
    Is that not Support?
    To me it was one of the most defining moments of the past 30 years and I lost all respect for SDLP for not standing in that election

  • Dewi

    Confused – they voted for a Hunger Striker from their own tribe. In that context not as an IRA gunman. Agree that a defining moment (actually in the road to peace) – Personally don’t think the SDLP could have stood (doing the British bidding would have destroyed them).

  • confused

    The SdlP were cowards.
    Their supporters gave their vote to PIRA and then hid behind the argument that it was only because of the hunger strike when they actually used the strike to show their real support for the Provo’s.

  • Dewi

    Confused – do you really believe the SDLP really supported the Provos ? Like this great pan-nationalist front thing ? Just ain’t true – Mallon’s bitterness as to how Sinn Fein benefited from the peace process is well documented (well I’ve heard him go on about it on the tele!)

  • confused

    Dewi
    I don’t believe SDLP as a Party had very much in common with the provos and I greatly admire Hume and Mallon with their stand on human rights but I could never understand the 29,000 votes for the leader of PIRA.
    They could have stayed at home to abstain.

  • Dewi

    Trying to save lives I think confused. Hunger Strike such a potent iconic image in Irish history.

  • Dewi

    Not the leader of the PIRA confused – just the OC in the prison.

  • confused

    Dewi
    OC was used in point 10 and leader of PIRA in point 14.
    Both phrases can be synonymous and if a difference exists it does not detract from the main point.

  • Dewi

    Confused – certainly does not detract from your point agreed. But OC refers to IRA prisoners in a prison – leader of PIRA implies leading the Army.

  • lib2016

    Could it be that committed SDLP supporters were equally committed Irish republicans, as are 80% of the Irish people of course, and that though we disagreed with the Provvies on tactics we were in no doubt that the ultimate responsibility for misrule in NI lay on the British government?

    Way back at the time of Bloody Sunday Hume said publically that his constituents would be satisfied with nothing less than a UI. That´s more true today than it was then.

    The only valid argument against physical force republicanism is that it reduced irish republicans to the moral level of their oppressors. Unfortunately it became inevitable which made the ethical situation even more complex. Did I and other SDLP supporters actually prolong the conflict by giving the Brits a figleaf?

  • confused

    I remember Hume making that statement about a UI or nothing.
    He certainly settled for a lot less and surprisingly SF agreed to the great compromise.

  • lib2016

    confused,

    Irish republicans are in government North and South and we are already working out the shape of a UI solution, with devolved government in the North if that can be made to work.

    Plan B was that it would be done without unionist input. That´s why, in Paisley´s phrase, ´there was no alternative´ but for unionists to endorse powersharing.

  • confused

    lib2016

    For years most unionists had no problems with power sharing.
    On a technical point Republicans do not exercise sovereign government in the North.
    Along with unionists they administer local government within the limits granted to them by Westminster and this will remain even when more powers are transferred such as police and justice.
    If republicans had their own destiny in their hands why do they tolerate the presence of mi5/mi6 at Holywood?

  • Dewi

    “For years most unionists had no problems with power sharing”

    Well perhaps you could have let the world know – because it certaintly did not not seem that way.

  • Stephen

    Whilst i cannot speak for SDLP voters/supporters, I would think that it is obvious that most people, being of limited political nouse will vote by tribe. They will vote for what they think is right and then they will vote for “not the other side”

    This may be simplistic and wrong, but so are most people in ireland and across the world.

    It is only when the strongest tribe representative e.g DUP or SF try to step outside the box that some of their tribe is taken with them. So, whilst i consider the reverand paisley to be a sectarian throwback, there could not have been peace without him. In the same breath, big gerry and co, may have sold out everything they tied to their masts in the eighties, but they must have realised that the goals they seek would not have been realised by one more working class lad being being sent back to england in a box.

    I can only hope that the present era of slow, but definable dialogue will go some way towards a just and lasting settlement to the differences that divide us.

    A united ireland made up of the different races and ideologies that are celebrated on blogs such as this!

  • confused

    To Dewi
    The world did know of the unionist’s position.
    You were not paying attention

  • Dewi

    Confused – believe me I was paying attention. the only real attempt at power sharing was broken by Paisley’s loyalists idiots. Please show me that that analysis is wrong – I’d be delighted to learn differently

  • confused

    Paisley did not bring down power sharing.
    It was the actions of republicans which caused the collapse of the Trimble led assembly,
    The spy-gate affair was responsible.

  • Dewi

    Sorry – i meant earlier – 1974.

  • Sean

    Confused
    You mean that non-event that collapsed into ignominy due to a total lack of evidence

    Not a very good reason it would seem, but score one for the securocrats. Though when justice powers are devolved they might find it was an own goal

  • Belfast Gonzo

    Sean

    Devolution of justice won’t have any effect on these matters.

  • Sean

    I think with out Whitehalls protection it will be!

  • Rory

    “Mixing me tail’s up – first should have read tale”, Dewi.

    That’s all right, Dewi, I like a bit of tail meself, as well as a bit of a tale.

  • Seanf

    Hi Rory, I have just come accross your contribution about the AOH on August 18th and the questions you ask.

    This gives me the opportunity to spread the word that the AOH is very much alive and going very well at the moment. You mention that you were amazed that the AOH could muster a parade in the North or words to that effect….. You would be pleased then to hear that the AOH has always been strongest in the North and indeed continues to be.

    You comment about the Parade in Kilkeel however our main parade (and yes I am a fully paid up member) was actually in Derry this year and was attended by thousands of members from all over Ireland, Scotland, America and even Canada.

    In addition to our main parade there were perhaps 30 other parades in the Northern state which were notified to the Parades Commission and many others in the Southern State, particularly in the Border Counties.

    The AOH have two main Parading days each year these being St. Patricks Day (March 17th) and the Feast of the Assumption (August 15th). Over and above this there are further local AOH parades for a whole host of reasons (religious celebrations) around the country throughout the year.

    AOH parades are generally not contentious and therefore do not get much attention.

    The AOH parade on the actual Feast day – such as Wednesday of last week, and those members who can attend then do so. Those that work etc are obviosly unable to attend each time. Other organisations march on the nearest Saturday so as to maximise their attendance – we dont – we march on the day of the Feast in celebration of the Religious significance of the day.

    The parade in Derry was a tremendous success this year.

    The AOH has been in existence since 1565 in one form or another but always with the motto Friendship Unity and True Christian Charity.

    We organise at local level in Divisions, then at county level, provincial level (9 county Ulster)and National Level. We have brother organisations in America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and in other parts of Europe who all have their own organisation and rules but effectively who all originate from the AOH in Ireland.

    There are AOH Divisions in every county of the Province of Ulster including County Down.

    Membership of the AOH is open to those who are Practising Catholics and Irish by Birth or Descent.

    The AOH in Ireland have their headquarters at 23 Foyle Street in Derry. Further information is always availble on request.

    Your relatives history in regard to the First World War and being an AOH Member is not uncommon. The AOH were heavily involved in many things down through the years including the Irish Volunteers and Irish National Volunteers. Many of them did go to the First World War as part of the call from Redmond, the Irish Party and the Church to fight for the freedom of small nations etc.

    Any how I hope this has been of some use to you and that you and others find the contribution helpful.

    In our Motto

    Seanf
    Órd Ársa Na hÉireann

    PS in regard to the debate on the Irish Language – quite a few of our members do speak Irish and we use the language regularly in our clubs and divisions.

  • Rory

    I am delighted to say, Seanf, that neither my grandfather nor great uncle joined up in response to any call from Redmond (the very thought horrifies me). Both had been obliged to join the reserves prior to any impending war simply for the bounty in order to feed their families when no employment was available. Hence an early call-up and an early death for my grandfather, and Uncle Hammy left maimed.

    The capitalist class certainly had value of the Carrs for their shillings so fuck Redmond – he was one of ’em.

  • jimbob

    I am a nationalist but I hate the nationalist/republican parades as it seems that they are copying the OO and trying to make it part of our culture, which it isnt.
    Irish language, tradional music, irish dance and gaelic games are part of the Irish heritage not copy-cat marching. Orange marches are part of the Irish Protestant culture which i respect, but mind you do not enjoy.
    The same seems to be happening on the other hand with Unionists tring to make the Ulster-Scots language as complex and rich as the Irish language as well as copy cat Ulster-Scots ceili music and Ulster-Scotch dancing for example visit: http://www.ulsterscotsagency.com/culture.asp

  • Donegaldub

    Jimbob –
    To say the AOH are copying the OO by parading is to ignore longstanding Catholic tradition not only in Ireland but all over the world.

    Parades to celebrate St Patricks Day, the Feast of the Assumption, Corpus Christi, have long been a feature of Irish catholicism.
    Further afield the Mardi Gras in Rio was originally a catholic procession to mark the start of Lent. Processing to churches at midnight led by bands and banners are an integral part of the Easter celebrations in many mediteranian countries.
    Parading does not belong to any one section of the community but it should be pointed out that in the early 70s the Hibs took a decision (wrong in my view) to stop parading because of the potential for further violence. Because of this the organisation seemed to have disappeared and it certainly suffered because of it.

  • Seanf

    Hi Rory,

    You are quite right of course that many people joined the Army or went to fight in World War 1 for a variety of reasons.

    Some reportedly for a pair of boots, others for the money to sustain their families, others for moral reasons and even others still for political reasons.

    Many who left never came back. Did you know that between the 10th Irish Division and the 16th Irish Division there were more Irish Nationalist Catholic dead and wounded than Ulster Unionist Protestant Dead and Wounded from the 36th Ulster Division.

    For many years the Irish Catholic Nationalist tradition has not learned about this, has forgotten about it, has allowed other events in Ireland to overshadow these facts etc etc. Whatever the reason or reasons the participation of Catholic Nationalist Ireland in WWI have not had the same importance for our community as the sacrifice of the Ulstermen has had for the Protestant Unionist tradition. Our society then allowed this to become yet another devisive issue for our society on this island.

    Very few people would realise for example that half the names listed on the War Memorial in Derry are those of local Catholic people. Few would again realise that for years Newry had no WWI memorial with names on it as the majority of WWI casualties from the area were Catholic etc etc.

    This is indeed a part of our forgotten history but again this is a common and shared history which should be explored by all sections of our community.

    For more information about such issues I would reccommend searching the web for the Island of Ireland Peace Park in Messines Belgium.

    For our part the AOH, as previously stated, were heavily involved in the Irish Volunteers and Irish National Volunteers and indeed many of our people did at that time go off to the war – maybe for political or moral reasons, for the defence of Catholic Belgium, for the Freedom of Small Nations or for a pair of boots……..

    Is Mise

    SeanF
    Órd Ársa Na hÉireann

  • Seanf

    Hi Jimbob & Donegaldub,

    You both raise a few interesting points about the AOH and copycat parades. Let me state the following.

    The AOH preceeds the Orange Order by almost 230 years and in that time were engaged in Religious Processions as was part of Catholic tradition worldwide and no different here in Ireland.

    The tradition of Religious Processions or Parades in modern day terms runs longer within the AOH than in any other Order or organisation in Ireland.

    Not long after the establishment of the Orange Order in the 1790s their parades and ours occasionally clashed and on occasions we interrupted each others parades…… See Dollys Brae etc……

    So to state that AOH Religious Processions are a recent phenomenon is actually incorrect. Donegaldub is however correct when he states that the AOH stopped religious processions and parades in the early 1970s. They took this courageous decision following the events of Bloody Sunday when innocent Civil Rights Marchers (some of them AOH members) where Murdered and Maimed on the streets of Derry. This was a very violent time in our recent history and there was much civil unrest. The AOH decided that it would be safer to cease their public processions during the height of the troubles. Their main aim in this decision was to safeguard life.

    The AOH turned instead to trying to attract young people off the streets and into the Order and away from violence. We had some success in this. However many of the AOH bands fell away or became Republican bands. Some of the smaller Divisions fell away. With hindsight many would say that the absence of the AOH for 20 years from public view has harmed us. It may have in terms of publicity and some recruitment etc but the Order is still strong and ever growing and rebuilding.

    We have restarted Religious Processions and Parades since the 1990s and you will notice if you are a keen observer of such things that each year sees more and more AOH parades in the North.

    I hope this helps Jimbob out – I assume that he is off an age where he would not remember pre-1970s AOH parades. I hope he is reassured that our activity is not copycat activity – if anything you could probably ask that question of the Orange Order.

    AOH Parades are Religious events. They are also expressions of not just Irish Catholicism but Irish Nationalism and have been part of our traditions for centuries.

    Is Mise

    SeanF
    Órd Ársa Na hÉireann

  • Dewi

    Seanf – are you sure that “more and more AOH parades in the North” is a good idea. The corgeous decision to stop in the seventies was correct in IMHO. Why not just have a few a year ?

  • Donegaldub

    Seanf –
    The President of the AOH was on TV after the parade in Derry and suggested that the AOH and the Apprentice Boys might come together to parade on St Patricks Day next year. This would be a very significant event if it were to happen, has there been any developments on this?

  • SeanF

    Hi Dewi & Donegaldub,

    Parades are always an emotive issue for people. There are many who have not been part of a parade or procession and still some more that have never actually watched a parade at close hand.

    There are also parades which cause difficulty for people and communities and others which have an opposite effect.

    So, whay do the AOH parade?

    Well, I could talk about all sorts of historical and cultural reasons etc and keep you here all day. So to paraphrase:

    ALL AOH Parades are Religious events. We have 2 main parades each year – St. Patricks Day and the Feast of the Assumption.

    We then have a large number of local Church Parades.

    The importance of the parade for the AOH is that it is a Religious Procession. Each parade that has bands will have them play, for the most part, Religous music – Hymns.

    Almost all local parades are held on a Sunday and involve either a Mass or Religious Service before or after the parade.

    The main National Parades are always held on the Feast Day itself no matter what day of the week it falls on – again because of the Religious importance of the Day.

    Parades are an outward expression of Faith for the AOH. This is not however the way we practise our Faith it is one way we use to Celebrate our Faith.

    The AOH is also about Celebrating our Culture and we have already explored the religious and cultural significance of parades but the outward expression of culture through Banners, Flags, Music, Parade, Collarettes, etc etc is also part and parcel of our celebration.

    The AOH have the Motto Friendship, Unity and True Christian Charity. We also stand for Faith and Fatherland.

    As regards comments by Jimbo Crossan our Natioanl President on August 15th you can be sure that any comment made is not an off the cuff remark. Further, any such remark is genuine and would be received as such.

    Contact is ongoing at this time and relationships are being established and built upon with a wide variety of people and groups and who knows what the future will hold.

    Did you know, Donegaldub, that the AOH, Sinn Fein and the Orange Order paraded together during anti conscription meetings during WWI and played alternate tunes during the parades and shared platforms against conscription?

    Is Mise

    SeanF

    Órd Ársa Na hÉireann

  • jombob

    Donegaldub,
    I take back what I stated about the AOH and copycat marching, I had no idea that the AOH predated the OO.
    But in my opinion I still think it is a bad idea to parade to hammer your beliefs into the other side of the community (which it seems both the OO and the AOH do). I like the idea that you raised about the Apprentice Boys and the AOH marching together in Derry. It seems like a good idea which would be made possible in these recent peacefull times and Im sure it would help build relations.

  • Rory

    Thank you for your gracious response, Seanf. The emotional reason for nationalists’ failure to carry a sense of veneration for those who died in the service of an imperial king has been perhaps best expressed in the verses of the song The Foggy, foggy dew:

    “O, had they died by Pearse’s side
    or fought with Cathal Brugha
    their names we would keep
    where the Fenians sleep
    in the shade of the foggy dew”

    But instead they died simply as those who died in the shafts of mines, or on construction sites or scalded by carelessly ladled molten steel in foundries (as I have witnessed),simply another disposable commodity in the relentless pursuit of profit, broken, useless and dispensable as bent and rusty nails.

  • Dewi

    A wonderfully eloquent post Rory. You are right, you were wasted as a accountant.

  • Rory

    I know, Dewi. I could have been a priest if it hadn’t been for the girls. Though Herself does believe that Father Jack was modelled on me anyway. So I suppose I enjoy it in some queer vicarious sort of way.

  • Donegaldub

    Rory –
    You should have referenced the proceeding line in the song:

    ‘Twas England bade our sons to go,
    that small nations might be free.
    But their souls now lie by Suvlas side,
    and the fringes of the grey north sea.’

    The writer specificially acknowledges the political motivation of many of those who joined up ‘that small nations might be free’, so in this way they are very different from those who died due to disgraceful working conditions and inadequate healthcare for the working classes.

    However, it was not just England that bade them do anything, it was their own political and church leaders at the time. Don’t forget that when the Irish Volunteers split, only 12,000 or so went with McNeill, over 150,000 sided with Redmond and his call to fight for small nations.

    The memorial stones to these men at Guillemont in France, Whytschaete in Flanders, and in Salonika are engraved with the quote ‘Do chum Gloire Dé agus Ónora na hEireann’ another acknowlegement that these men died for Ireland.

    They were written out of Irish history, and continue to be written out, because they died as members of the British army and therefore dont fit easily into simplistic or comic book explainations of the period. Far from being as you describe ‘servants of an Imperial King’ these were patriotic Irish nationalists who believed, (as did most of the country at the time) that they were doing the right thing by Ireland.