“substantive task of dealing with the past in large measure rest[s] with..”

Yesterday on his Diaries blog Mark Devenport mentioned the appearance, in front of the First and Deputy First Ministers’ scrutiny committee, of the Eames/Bradley consultation group. But the report in the Irish Times indicates a couple of awkward conclusions [subs req]. According to the report “Lord Eames [told the committee].. that it was crucial to achieve political agreement on the way forward.” And we already know that at least one party has issues with the Eames/Bradley group. The second conclusion I’d suggest we can reach is that the Eames/Bradley group has no intention of trying to take the bull by the horns. From the Irish Times report

Lord Eames said everyone in the North had memories and emotions about the past, and the general responsibility of his group was to address the issue without overshadowing the positive potential of the future. He stressed they were not a truth and reconciliation group but had a brief to come up with proposals on confronting the past.

Mr Bradley said the consultative group on the past was a transitory body that should be wound up next year after it makes its recommendations – if it could agree on its recommendations – and the substantive task of dealing with the past in large measure rested with the Northern Assembly and Executive.

and the other members of the group are reported as saying this

Mr McBride adverted to the complexity of finding agreement on the past. He said he was very heartened by the people who had already come forward to speak to the group. “We are not going to satisfy everybody no matter what we come up with, but we are trying to come up with something that will satisfy as many as possible.”

Mr Burns said given that even the Omagh relatives could not agree on a memorial garden to remember the victims of the Real IRA bombing, it was clear that the challenge to achieve consensus on recommendations would be hugely difficult.

To repeat myself, and a reminder of the comparison I’ve been using..

Poisonous foundations and all that..

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  • Rory

    “Lord Eames said everyone in the North had memories and emotions about the past,

    Very astute of his lordship to notice.

    I might add, for his enlightenment, that this phenomenon is not unknown in other parts of the world. Why, only yesterday I met a man in St Alban’s market and he said he had just remembered that his wife had asked him earlier that morning to pick up a few ponds of potatoes if he ever managed to venture out of the pub. He also expressed a little annoyance at her sarcasm thus demonstrating both memory and emotion.

    Lord Eames also says that his group “had a brief to come up with proposals on confronting the past.” In that case I should be more than astounded if his group were able to fulfil their brief given that the only groups that I have witnessed attempting such trickery have either been sad lonely individuals influenced by Madame Blavatsky and Theosophy or charlatans with flashlights creeping around old buildings with a bunch of dupes in tow and shivering and moaning in front of cameras for later edited display on saddo tv cable channels.

    There will never be justice for the dead. The dead do not require earthly justice. Their only demand, made manifest in the corruptibility of their corpses, is that we bury them. If we are of a mind we may pray for the sweet repose of their souls. But such prayers are a comfort for the grieved as are funeral and memorial rites amd all the good for that. Those that mourn need comforting.

    But after that move on. Do not let the morbidity of grief overwhelm nor search for impossible justice in an unjust world. Move forward and embrace life and, as Jesus the Christ is reported to have said, “Let the dead bury the dead”.

  • gareth mccord

    What a load of crap from a group so far from the thoughts and feelings of victims that they should Piss off making and spinning christian bullshit.
    there is only one word and one action that any group should use JUSTICE. If so called christians want to form a group then base it solely on HOW TO GET JUSTICE OR TRY 100% to get it, nothing more nothing, less is needed.

  • The Dubliner

    “There will never be justice for the dead.” – Rory

    Not as long as the political careers of the criminal sociopaths that you support depends on persuading the public that it is in their best interests to ignore the reality of what degenerates and their apologists (such as you)are responsible for, and continuing the pretence that kneecappers, murderers, fascists, thieves, extortionists, thugs, smugglers and all-round scumbags are fit and proper people to hold political office, such that we can all look forward to a bright new future that is to be created by the people who created the dark and dismal past. The lunatics actually are running the asylum.