“…time for an effort to be made to reduce rather than heighten tension”

Parades Commission Chair Roger Poole has just released a statement on the weekend’s events… below the fold:

“We have been asked to review our decisions but in fact there are very narrow grounds upon which we can review decisions and in this instance the Commission did not deem that there were sufficient grounds for a review.

“We would ask that those who intend to come to the city on Sunday review their own positions and redouble their efforts to take tension out of this issue in advance of the parade. Belfast deserves a peaceful weekend and the citizens and traders in the city are entitled to a trouble free day. Anyone intent of causing or contributing to civil unrest should stay away.

“I acknowledge the helpful comments from the GOC of the British Army who has recognised that not everyone in NI supports the army and that there is a legitimate right to a legal protest. It is not helpful that some political and community leaders continue to call for either the homecoming parade or the legally notified protest, to be banned.

“Now is the time for an effort to be made to reduce rather than heighten tension around this parade and protest. There is an onus on those political and community leaders in a position of influence to demonstrate leadership between now and Sunday through their words, their actions and their commitment to non violent actions.

“Our door remains open to all political parties and to those organising protests and parades to come into the Commission and discuss with us how best to ensure a peaceful day.”

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  • Driftwood

    What were the remarks of the GOC?

    And will anyone really take notice of anything Roger Poole says anyway. It’s a fairly bland statement restating the obvious.

  • DC

    It is sad that it has come to this. I believe protests are worthy in their own right to raise issues, but we know already through previous decades of this stuff that SF doesn’t like the British army for obvious reasons, the same way the DUP doesn’t like the IR-Army for obvious reasons.

    That much is obvious, so what is the point in protesting a message that we all know so clearly.

    I think the RIR should ditch Belfast, and perhaps choose a location that people would appreciate them, welcome them, be proud of their efforts even though not feeling in full support of wars as a means to an end in itself.

    For example, places like Carrickfergus, Ballymena, etc, would welcome these troops and the hospitality sectors would be appreciative of the crowds. Crowds could get food without the fear of getting a gobbed-on burger and chips etc.

    Belfast is clearly not a sharing city, why bother with it whenever there are other places that would really appreciate hosting the event not least for the economic benefits for local traders etc.

  • Carson’s Cat

    DC
    Do you extend your idea not to parade in Belfast to nationalist/republican parades too? Or to any parade where one group of people say they don’t want it to happen.

    Or perhaps that might be considered pandering to the threat of violence….

    Just wondering….

  • DC

    They are both interlocking strategies – unionism-nationalism – remove the other and one can only run so far until no one really cares.

    A bit like, say, Forest Gump, running the world only to return to pick up his life again.

    These are strategies, not policies, not civic-mindedness of equality and human rights. The move by SF in particular to protest on a backward issue that pre-dates the American-led Afghan-Iraq war proves this to be nothing other than what it is.

    It is an ethno-national protest as imagined by SF to appeal to its voters so as not to be ethnically outbid by Eirigi.

    Leadership, no. Leadership it isn’t. This is ethnic fellowship, at a time when people need really responses to world changing events such as the collapse of capital and new debates around the socialisation of capitalism’s failings.

    Back home in Belfast we are about to witness, something that with all our section 75s and EQIA, which the Shinners love so much, a return to old ethnic-bloc antagonism – a message we have all heard before.

    Anybody got anythning new?

  • Marion

    Poole is his usual insipid self….what he should have done is ban the Shinners hate protest and hopefully the Police will show Erigi and the other lefty loonies that they won’t get out of their ghetto in the Falls.

    The hatemongering scum should be kept out…time to welcome the RIR heroes and other regiments to the Capital city of British Northern Ireland.

    COME OUT IN YOUR THOUSANDS AND SHOW THE TERRORISTS AND THEIR ILK THAT ULSTER IS BRITISH AND WE WELCOME HER MAJESTY’S FORCES TO OUR CITY

  • 2050

    They should review it! Both leaders of the main political partys should show leadership on this one and reach a compromise but doubtful it will happen on time but it would be a pleasant surprise.

    Extremists on both sides are loving this chance to drag the rest of us backwards.

    As I said on another thread earlier today;

    So the Million+ people who marched against War in London & millions elsewhere pre Iraq & Afghanistan were wrong then?

    They should never of been out there in the first place! It was all based on lies and rooted in money.

    Let them have a parade in their barracks where there family and friends can welcome them back.

    The rest of us (vast majority) don’t actually care and have plenty of other concerns.

  • William

    2050….who ever you are….speak only for YOURSELF….the British people of Northern Ireland most certainly care and we welcome Her Majesty’s Royal Irish Rangers home to their capital city.

    GOD BLESS THEM ALL

    [Keep it civil – edited moderator]

  • William

    2050….who ever you are….speak only for YOURSELF….the British people of Northern Ireland most certainly care and we welcome Her Majesty’s Royal Irish Rangers home to their capital city.

    GOD BLESS THEM ALL

    THE MURDERING SCUM WILL BE THE PROTESTORS

  • lorraine

    COME OUT IN YOUR THOUSANDS AND SHOW THE TERRORISTS AND THEIR ILK THAT ULSTER IS BRITISH AND WE WELCOME HER MAJESTY’S FORCES TO OUR CITY

    Posted by Marion on Oct 30, 2008 @ 01:23 PM

    ulster is NOT british, it is IRISH. the u.k. consists of g.b. AND n.ireland. g.b. is british, ulster is irish, a thing recognised in british law.

    thousands may turn out to welcome the child killers and butchers of afghanistan/iraq……………….
    thousands more will turn out to state loudly and proudly: not in my name! NO to institutionalised murder.

  • Lorraine

    Lorraine….please don’t let yourself down by displaying ignorance, lack of knowhow, knowledge, display of hatred, willing to lie, be a hatemonger, etc etc.

    This comment, ‘….killers and butchers of afghanistan/iraq….’ shows that you don’t have a clue what the RIR and other regiments were doing in Iraq and Afghanistan. Obviously you support the Taliban in Afghanistan….wonder where your Equality Act / Section 75, so loved by the terrorists in suits, Sinn Fein / IRA , would fit into in that country. Women’s Rights etc….

    Anything thing British – HATE IT

    Anything evil, like the Taliban – LOVE IT

    SINN FEIN / IRA — SURELY UNFIT FOR GOVERNMENT

  • Paul

    Hi Lorraine….are there two of you or are you contradicting yourself…..

    By the way ‘…protesting loud and proud…’….I thought the Sinn Fein / IRA councillor Paul Maskey told us all it was going to be ‘a dignified and quiet protest????’

    Isn’t it ? or do you know something different?

  • ggn

    Mick,

    Surely all the threads on this issue could be reconciled into one thread and the others closed.

    It is too difficult to follow and I am sure impossilbe to manage especially given the impossibilty of any common ground on the issue.

  • DC

    “NO to institutionalised murder.”

    I have no doubt you have a point with that issue; however, I imagine that Britain weighed this up and thought about risks too.

    It is likely that when using violence as a means to change local regime it will sow the seed of its usefulness locally. So, when the coalition army withdraws the first thing the locals will do is to retaliate in a similar way, one against the other.

    It is whether this retaliation will be any worse than that under Saddam and that of his sons or the attack on women in Afghanistan etc.

    That’s why in particular Blair’s legacy cannot yet be written, Bush’s the same. I hope that there isn’t anymore of this to come, but come what may it might still turn out for the better, relatively speaking.

    Of course people like you Lorraine seem to be fixed on the absolutes, fair enough – I wasn’t keen on the whole Iraq war thing at all and was in opposition to it. I wont be in Belfast though this Sunday.

  • lorraine

    post 10. (why you use me name eludes me)

    afghan and iraqi people are being butchered in their thousands. opposition to this sort of behaviour is not hatred.
    your rants sound typical of the brave ulster loyalist psyche which sees heroism in terms of throwing blast bombs at school children; little wonder you have no compassion for the thousands being slaughtered in afghanistan and iraq

  • John

    As a Derry Catholic and former full-time soldier in the RIR I will be attending Sunday’s parade to welcome home my old regiment and other ranks who’ll be on parade.

    I will be on one of 7 buses [approximately] 350 people who will leave Derry to go up to Belfast and be proud to salute these find brave men.

    To be demeanded by the supporters of terrorism is sickening but the skins of these young men and women is thick enought to withstand the diatribe of abuse from ignorant people.

    They have withstood more than verbal bullsh*t and will march through Belfast with pride this coming Sunday.

    LEST WE FORGET

  • William

    Lorraine…

    You as a Sinn Fein / IRA supporter have some cheek! ‘Throwing blast bombs at schoolchildren’ you state. A] It wasn’t thrown at schoolchildren
    B] It shouldn’t have been thrown at anyone

    and C] more importantly, thousands of bombs, bullets were thrown and shot at Army, Police, Innocent Protestants and Roman Catholics by your friends. Remember the Party of Government, Sinn Fein / IRA murdered 1,771 people in Northern Ireland, not to mention those elsewhere and also murdered more Roman Catholics than any other agency.
    So get a life and lie on in your bed next Sunday, where you no doubt are every other Sabbath day.

  • Driftwood

    ggn
    post 12, good point

    Thing is , all the threads are following the same traditional route.

  • Dermot

    Lorraine, must be on British benefits, if she can sit all day on the PC sending out hate filled messages. No need to go out and earn her living.

    Put her to work, I say….there must be some jobs going for a proficient computer operator.

  • cynic

    “NO to institutionalised murder”

    ….so join in the SF protest when you will be standing alongside some of those who ….errrrrr……3500 dead …… shootings…..bombings ……disappeared ….errrrr

    And of course isn’t it better to stand and protest in Donegall Place than to fight for the rights of people in a whole country who were held hostage by religous fundamentalists who opressed women, banned music and killed people for crimes like exercising freedom of speech? Well, at least here you can join that protest. In Afgahanistan or Iraq that would have got you and possibly your family executed.

    I am not advocating war as a good instrument of policy. Wars are dreadful things but by your shallow definition, in World War 2 it was wrong for the UK and USA to fight the Nazis as some innocent civilians were been killed along the way.

  • Dermot

    Hi cynic….just off to work after the lunch-break but had to say that I agree with you wholeheartedly…..it is time that those Sinn Fein / IRA / Lefties / Socalist Workers and other assorted loonies got a life and stayed in their beds / ghettos / drinking dens or wherever else they spend their Sunday mornings. I doubt it would be in any Church or chapel.

  • lorraine

    difficult as it may be for some to accept, i am NOT a sinn feiner, just an ordinary civilian. and one who is opposed to the illegal wars bush and blair took us into for oil and money (for themselves, not for us).

    further, i don’t know how many times i’ve read about injured soldiers from iraq/afghanistan returning home to discover all the flag waving and bluster is just that, with nothing substantive in terms of rehabilitation and state assistance to help them get their scarred lives back together.

    so you can display all the hatred you like, i have no problem with welcome home parades per se, but this one has taken on a life of its own which can only end in disaster.

  • Terence

    Lorraine; I am posting for the first time on this thread but have read most of the previous postings. If you are not against the parade per se, may I just suggest then that you stop posting about it. It is you and others on other media outlets, radio, tv and press are fuelling the flames that could lead to violence next Sunday. In my humble opinion, the protest by Sinn Fein and the other assorted nonentities is purely designed to stir up trouble, to get the parade cancelled and now that is won’t be, to confront those who are hoping to attend and get a riot started. The protestors also wish to scare people from coming least there be trouble, so it can be said to be very carefully contrived. As Gerry Adams said of the anti Loyal Order parades, ‘These protests just didn’t happen, they were carefully planned and I give those who planned them great credit for what they have done’….No doubt his views on this protest are in a similiar vein.
    So give the PC a rest…..and help contribute to a more peaceful event. IT IS GOING TO HAPPEN – SO ACCEPT IT. OK?

  • Paul

    Sweet2u….Lorraine – Do as the man says please….give it a rest for now….away and get the marker out and get that Big Anti War poster prepared.

    Wars aren’t beautiful – But sometimes they are necessary !

  • fair_deal

    So Poole goes for its everybody else’s fault line as well

  • lorraine

    terence

    what takes place on slugger is dialogue. we are allowed to hold opinions and beliefs and express them.
    even with sectarian stereotypes being fired against me i still enjoy the cut and thrust of debate.
    i have a principled position vis-a-vis the udr/rir. they are a sectarian murder gang. they murdered and maimed. they are not heroes and i will protest the obscenity of parading them through belfast, and continue to articulate a principled position vis-a-vis them and their illegal wars.
    telling people stop posting could almost be interpreted as a yearning for the old days when catholics/nationalists were hemmed into the ghettoes and subjected to british brutality if we tried to walk into the city centre.

  • Democratic

    “they are a sectarian murder gang”
    Hasn’t the same been said of many of those organising opposition to the parade on various occasions – its seems that Nationalists here are not at all anti-war nor ever have been – merely any war that has British involvement. It is the true anti-war pacifists that will miss out on Sunday as their message is being steadily perverted into “Brits Out” instead….sad really.

  • 2050

    William,

    the British people of Northern Ireland most certainly care and we welcome Her Majesty’s Royal Irish Rangers home to their capital city.

    GOD BLESS THEM ALL

    THE MURDERING SCUM WILL BE THE PROTESTORS

    Choice words from you there! I’ll elaborate on post 6 for you as you requested I speak up.

    My opinion is the so called War in Iraq & Afgan is based on lies and rooted in money/oil & the US/British relationship. The troops should never have been sent.
    That said, they followed orders , participated in the wrecking of other countrys fought and many died.

    I also think familys and friends should welcome them home but in their own base or parade ground.

    Not in a public place in a country with a history of division and trouble which the British army played a large part in.

    The significant NON British population who live here obviously don’t want or relate to this and it shouldn’t be rubbed in their face.

    There is probably is an even more significant number of people who live here who really have other things to be concerned about right now and for the future and don’t really care.

    But sure its great craic for the extremists and trouble makers FROM BOTH SIDES of the religious / political divide to roll the name of Northern Ireland / Ireland in mud once again.

  • picador

    The posts on this thread come from differing viewpoints but they carry the same message – this stupid bloody parade is dragging our country backwards. A pox on the British government for facilitating it.

  • Steve

    William

    You obviously spend your sabaths in church

    It shows through your anger and intolerance and your desire to stop others expressing their free will

  • picador

    And what of the Irish government? Are they even aware of the forthcoming rumble in the jungle? Does it have anything to say to its British counterpart? Or will it be its usual pusillanimous self?

  • Ri Na Deise

    Picador

    Id guess the Free State government will act as cowardly as they always have done.

  • RepublicanStones

    “2050….who ever you are….speak only for YOURSELF….the British people of Northern Ireland most certainly care and we welcome Her Majesty’s Royal Irish Rangers home to their capital city.”

    Carlsberg don’t do irony….

  • My suggestion for what its worth is cancel everything on Sunday and instead invite Russell Brand to redeem himself in the eyes of the public and do a free live show in front of the City Hall.

    There will still be ample opportunity for people who want to be offended to be offended but at least there is unlikely to be much trouble. Mary Whitehouse is dead after all.

  • cynic

    “i have a principled position vis-a-vis the udr/rir. they are a sectarian murder gang.”

    Strange definition of “principled” ! Lets try ill-informed, bigoted, biased perchance?

    Perhaps you also believe that all those Irish lads from Dublin etc in the RIR have been up at night secretly being initiated into the Orange Order and trained only to kill Taigs? You may also believe in fairies and Father Christmas. It doesn’t make them any more true

    And forgive me but just when where those days when:-

    “catholics/nationalists were hemmed into the ghettoes and subjected to british brutality if we tried to walk into the city centre”

    What age are you girl? Do you actually live here?

  • Pancho’s Horse

    cynic, I see you are still on about the trailer trash from the free state. Once you join the british army, you become a british soldier. After that it doesn’t matter whether you are born catholic/muslim/irish you have decide who to support.If you and the likes of you feel so strongly about the ‘lads’ from Baile Atha Cliath, why don’t you all invite one into your homes for xmas. Real support not sectarian flagwaving at the city hall.

  • Driftwood

    the trailer trash from the free state

    Pancho, as a fellow unionist, I am dismayed at the bigotry you display towards our neighbours, who I have generally found to ba very pleasant, with the exception of Charles Haughey. The majority of people from the Irish Republic are good citizens, as are people I know from Denmark, USA and other foreign countries. Show some respect.

  • picador

    The majority of people from the Irish Republic are good citizens, as are people I know from Denmark, USA and other foreign countries. Show some respect.

    DW

    Try taking your own advice.

  • Pancho’s Horse

    Driftwood, I am Irish, born in Ireland and consider myself an Irish citizen. You on the other hand were born in Ireland, consider yourself British and consider yourself a subject of Elizabeth, Regina. Which of us is right? Are we both right? How can this be? And what was wrong with Charles Haughey? Was he not ‘a good Republican’?

  • lorraine

    And forgive me but just when where those days when:-

    “catholics/nationalists were hemmed into the ghettoes and subjected to british brutality if we tried to walk into the city centre”

    What age are you girl? Do you actually live here?

    Posted by cynic on Oct 30, 2008 @ 05:01 PM

    not too long back cynic. traditionally we would get to divis street when the ruc and british army beat and shot us back up the falls road.

    unionist hegemony wouldn’t tolerate a fenian about the place and we still bear the scars from those day: hence the heartfelt opposition to this parade.

  • Driftwood

    Pancho
    I didn’t know they had trailer parks in ‘the free state’. You don’t know the motives of anyone joining the(British)army, or their background. lets hope Sunday goes like this:
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/essex/7699179.stm
    Charles Haughey was a crook, pure and simple. He has fellow travellers in the UK (Jeffrey Archer) and elsewhere (‘Lord’ Black). They exist in all societies. Are Princes Harry and William British trailer trash?
    picador, My partner is one of ‘them’ and doesn’t support Sundays parade or the protestors. She is going shopping on Sunday. I suggest you do the same. Shame you’ll miss the Apache flyover though, I think deep down the eirigi boys will love it.

  • Pancho’s Horse

    Lighten up,Driftwood. We all know the English princes are not soldiers.This is just sugar for the grunt’s pill.Likewise, we all know what section of society joins the army’s lower ranks. And yes they do have trailer parks in the free state. I admit I don’t know the motives of those who join the army but I’ll take a guess.

  • Neil Blaney (SP)

    what was wrong with Charles Haughey?

    He had a face like a sheep’s arse, that’s what.

  • Pancho’s Horse

    spoken like a man who comes from that part of the country that knows a sheep’s ass when he sees one.

  • doctor

    “Perhaps you also believe that all those Irish lads from Dublin etc in the RIR have been up at night secretly being initiated into the Orange Order and trained only to kill Taigs?”

    How many “Irish lads from Dublin” (or what would generally be considered a nationalist background) are actually in the RIR? It’s like trying to paint the old RUC as a virtual rainbow coalition because it had a whopping 8% Catholic membership.

  • William

    Doctor…..the RUC had only 8% Roman Catholic members because they didn’t join, due to Nationalist / Republican pressure throughtout the years from the foundation of the force. However, ranks about Sergeant in the RUC had over 15% of senior ranks….in other words there was probably positive discrimination in their favour.

  • Ri Na Deise

    Dubs never had much issue taking soup to be fair.

  • doctor

    William, I realize they didn’t join. Its debatable that we would have swarms of Catholics joining if it wasn’t for some amorphous nationalist/republican pressure. Maybe its because most Catholics in some shape or form agreed with the nationalist/republican view of the RUC.

    Likewise, trying to paint the RIR as representative of both communities because there is a relative handful of “nationalists” just doesn’t jive.

  • NW

    I hope these anti-war protestors realise that it is the 1st Battalion of the RIR being welcomed back this Sunday, they are the worldwide battalion and so did not serve in Belfast. It was the other battalions (2nd, 3rd etc) that served here in Ulster, many of the shinners and their mob are protesting due to the “hundreds murdered by the RIR here in Ulster”. The fact is these men did not serve here and many would no little about it as there is a large multi-national contingent to the 1st Battalion (Fijians, Americans and those from the Commonwealth). Your point is therefore not acceptable. Even when the home battalions of the RIR closed very few transfered to the 1st Battalion. These men were out in Afghan and Iraq stopping dictatorships that censored the press, tortured it’s people, refused to let women and girls learn, forced young men to join their ranks and banned music are are therefore heroes. Where would Sinn Fein be now if they lived in such conditions? The idea of a protest in a Taliban controlled Afghanistan is laughable, women are afraid to leave their homes! Does the republican support of an anti-war protest mean they support the undemocratic leaderships of the Taliban and Saddam?

  • Democratic

    “Dubs never had much issue taking soup to be fair.”

    F*ck sake – do you lot down there still give people grief about soup taking – can you still spot them traitorous turncoat Protestant bastards by the slightly different spelling of their Irish surnames – good on ya….

  • John Furlong’s Ceylon

    No more elephants in Bangor whether pink or grey, African or Asian