“A little apology, perhaps?”

BBC NI political editor Mark Devenport has noted on his blog that Sinn Féin’s Barry McElduff appeared today in front of the Northern Ireland Assembly’s Committee on Standards and Privileges over comments he had made commending Ógra Sinn Féin members for painting Royal Mail post boxes green.. I’ll let Mr McElduff explain himself.. Update The Committee’s Report is out.

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  • Up Tyrone!

    Slow news day in Ballybakerville?

  • Billyo

    With a paintbrush in one hand and a ballot paper……

    Yet another one of the crazies rolling around within Sinn Fein. Personally I think it has a lot to do with small-man syndrome.

    How does Sinn Fein balance its ‘support’ for law and order with this incitement to crime?

  • Bruno Spiro

    “Slow news day….”

    I can well understand why Sinn Fein would like to keep this sort of thing under wraps but I imagine it’s like trying to control a box of mad frogs, at least one is always going to poke his head up.

  • Ógra Abu!

    Fairplay to Ógra Shinn Féin! Good to see young nationalists highlighting the folly of partition and expressing their Irishness! And Barry McElduff is right they shouldn’t have been red in the first place, just saving an póst a job of work when theres a united Ireland!

  • Yes good to see young people demonstrating they have never read James Connolly talking about the futility of changing the flag and painting the postboxes green, and thus don’t see the irony of this. Highlights them for the gormless muppets that they are.

  • Nomad

    What makes a green postbox in any part of Ireland more Irish than a red postbox?

  • Comrade Stalin

    I’m glad that Barry, along with the politicians running the Standards and Privileges ctte, reckon that the colour of the post boxes is the most pressing issue effecting the people he represents right now.

    Isn’t it fantastic that we have such a high-calibre set of local representatives harnessing the opportunity presented by devolution to deliver real changes to improve the lives of ordinary people. More of this, please!

  • Driftwood

    Barry would be delighted to hear your comments as his email at the assembly is here

    But what’s this???, .gov.uk on his official email???. Surely some mistake here?

  • al

    @ driftwood

    david mcnarry eluded to his faux-republicanism earlier on stormont live too. that’s why all he has left is stupid cack like the colour of post boxes.

  • niall

    Scary thing is he will be around for a long time to come. A constituency that elects Pat “see you at election time” Doherty deserves no better than this muppet.

    It is the same red neck inverted snobbery that Bush elected and re-elected, “he may be a fool anbut he is our fool he’s really a cute hoor beneath the surface”.

    Irony of course is that the same shinners would be all preachy about Bush.

    Man is an idiot, sounds like an idiot and will do very well in NI politics.

  • ogra abu!

    Its suprising that david McNarry and the people commenting on this blog make such a big deal out of young republicans painting post boxes green yet maintain complete silence about red white and blue kerb stones and loyalist sectarian graffiti sprayed on walls across the six counties.

    These young people live in Ireland and this is their way of asserting that.

  • Shore Road Resident

    Great – another Ogra argument boils down to “Two wrongs make a right”.

  • blinding

    People that sell green post box paint have to make a living too.
    Hopefully this Paint is being purchased on the southern side of the border as a balance to all the euros being spent in the North.

  • I’m sure ógra abú they could express the fact they live in Ireland in numerous other ways (and by the way are we supposed to interpret living in Ireland as meaning being Irish? I reckon there are a lot of Poles who disprove that theory for a start). Sensible ways that don’t make them look like fools, ignorant of the thinking of those they claim to follow.

    They again, if this is about marking territory, then they are at the right intellectual level. With animals marking their territory.

    Welcome to northern nationalists – the most sophisticated electorate in western Europe. As demonstrated by voting for the likes of McIlduff.

  • Ogra Abu!

    Actually shore road resident, thats not the arguement because the postbox campaign isnt a “wrong”.

    My point is that if you consider it to be a wrong then surely you would consider the loyalist leonardo da vinci’s to be in the wrong as well? Yet no one seems to comment on that.

  • iluvni

    “These young people live in Ireland and this is their way of asserting that.”

    How do you say ‘thick as champ’ in Irish?

  • Ogra Abu!

    Garibaldy and you must be so intellectual yourself that you have to resort to comparing people to animals to make an arguement??

    They do express the fact they live in Ireland in a number of other ways that includes campaigning for the much needed Irish Language Act.

    Also at no point did I say that because you live in Ireland that you are Irish, that was another poor attempt by you to twist what I said in such a way to try and construct an arguement for yourself.

  • Patrick

    ‘A constituency that elects Pat “see you at election time” Doherty deserves no better than this muppet.’ – As a constituent of Mr Doherty’s I know well the work that he is engaged in throughout the W Tyrone Constituency. I’m unsure if the poster is a constituent of just a serial grump.
    But some of the issues Pat Doherty has taken the lead on are the issues surrounding the redevelopment of the Lisanelly British Army base into an Educational Campus to serve numerous schools in the town of Omagh, the huge proposals surrounding Opportunity Omagh, which could create thousands of jobs in a time of economic turmoil as well as the whole N2/A5 Motorway project. So it is clear that the MP is doing major things for this constituency.
    On another point-just before Christmas Mr Doherty visited a school which my child attends, this was a part of a larger itinerary involving visiting many community groups in my local area and engaging with the local people of the town. This, in addition to having two full time party offices in the constituently underlines the reason why he is the current MP for the area.
    So Im wondering is the poster a serial grump or does something deeper lurks beneath the surface?

  • Comrade Stalin

    My point is that if you consider it to be a wrong then surely you would consider the loyalist leonardo da vinci’s to be in the wrong as well? Yet no one seems to comment on that.

    Loyalist kerbstone painting is completely wrong. Is that good enough for you ?

    Incidentally, I’m glad you’re drawing equivalence between your actions and those of the slack-jawed swivel-eyed knuckle-dragging WKD-swilling loyalists. It saved me the bother of doing it.

  • niall

    It’s a petty and stoopid thing to do Ogra Abu. Grow up. You want to work toward a united Ireland?

    Can I suggest you start a business, employ some people, make some cash, learn about economics, europe and what it does/could mean for us. If you still have time paint away…….(you shouldn’t have time)

  • Ogra Abu!!

    Firstly what do you mean “your” actions? I cant remember saying that I did it..

    and secondly i never once compared it to the actions of loyalists.. Shore road resident did. If you look above I said that it wasnt a “wrong”.

  • blinding

    How about red and green stripes or red and green rows.

  • There’s nothing unintellectual in comparing people’s behaviour to that of lower animals. I asked whether the implication of your remark was that living in Ireland made you Irish. I didn’t try and construct an argument on the basis of that remark.

  • Guillaume

    How does Sinn Fein balance its ‘support’ for law and order with this incitement to crime?-Billyo

    it doesn’t and does not need to.

    How do you say ‘thick as champ’ in Irish? -illuvni

    we don’t and we don’t need to.

  • Peter

    Fair play to the young people involved in this campaign!! Its great to see people like Barry McElduff supporting it.
    I know speaking in terms of my own local area that there have been numerous postboxes ‘greened’ over the past number of years. And long my it continue.
    On a lighter note i wonder is there a standard shade of green they use. There is a postbox near to my house which has recently been painted red. It could do with a lick or two of paint!!!

  • niall


    I’ll be your grump, as well as constituent of PD’s.

    The road to be funded by free state/eu £ is part of the NDP for Dublin? Was Pat involved in persuading any decisions there then? Perhaps he can tell us a bit about how he helped fund it?

    The Lisanelly thing is pie in the sky. That land is MOD land and the government isn’t going to give it to the schools.

    As for opportunity Omagh it is opposed by many in Omagh. Also the way the lobbyist took a bullying tone in the local press was appalling. To paraphrase “if you don’t think this is a good idea for Omagh, as we do you’re backward”.

    No real explanations of course as to how the investment will realise a profit for the international investors. What will they do with their profit? Look after a community they know nothing of, like PD or take it home with them? Not very ourselves alone in any event.

    Opportunity Omagh – 2008
    Roads – nothing to do with Pat.
    Campus – Pie in the sky

    Where’s our healthcare gone? Where’s our economy going?

    So Patrick, i’m glad he went to the schools. Great!

    Tell me a bona fide Pat Doherty initiative that has a legacy for West Tyrone, nevermind the county town.

  • Driftwood

    I hope no self respecting nationalist/republican works for the ‘Royal’ Mail. If they do i hope Ogre Shin Fein get around to ‘targeting’ these unpatriotic villains, accepting the queens shilling to opress Catholic mail recipients who have suffered enough by having the queens head on their postage stamps, violating their Irish birthright etc etc.
    Surely an Assembly debate is needed to look in to a neutral colour for post boxes. Maybe a sub-committee or even a commission could be set up. This is too important to let go. Employment could be created by painting the poat boxes a different colour every 6 months decided by an inclusive committee after an 18 month consultation with various groups affected by the postal service………………..

  • Guillaume


    Careful what you wish for….

  • Gertntfe

    Orc shin fein, utter loons of course but more to be pitied than laughed at.

    I wonder if they have little tiny brushes to paint out the Queen’s head on the stamps they post?

    Better still do they paint out the Queen on their dole money handouts? Nah, don’t think so.

  • niall

    Also Patrick, there’s more…

    …….what about our Housing Executive and Education Board Jobs going to Enniskillen? Losing all the healthcare provision which had been a backbone of the economy to Enniskillen too?

    I’ve nothing against them, just obviously would prefer West Tyrone to get a prefernce vote on something?

    It would be hard to build a road to Letterkenny from Dublin with out going through West Tyrone in fairness tho perhaps PD sent them a MAP?

    Maybe that’s why he was at your kids school.

    Ah Pat Doherty, d’you remeber the day he was at young Johns school? Yeah, he’s a great patriot indeed…….. whats that?…….work? no no sure why would I be at work on a schoolday, i’m from West Tyrone.

    Let’s see him standing with the workers

  • Guillaume

    wonder if they have little tiny brushes to paint out the Queen’s head on the stamps they post?

    Better still do they paint out the Queen on their dole money handouts? Nah, don’t think so
    –says Gertntfe.
    I presume you refuse to drive on the roads that have received Irish Government funding;

  • Ogra Abu!

    Gertnfe thats a bit of a condescending comment to assume that young nationalist people are on the dole? Similar to the bigotry of Jim Wells actually!

    And hmmm… boycotting the queens ugly head on the stamps isnt a bad idea!

  • Mark McGregor

    The campaign didn’t last that long. Even the box outside Sevastapol St is now back to regal red and they stopped showing long series of photos of youngsters painting on the OSF blog ages ago.

    Photo-op, agitprop and Barry gets to be questioned about the dead parrot months later.

  • Ogra Abu!

    Actually Mark the campaign has been ongoing for a number of years since Ógra’s formation. And the reason the one outside Sevastapol St isnt green anymore is because unfortunately the paint that was used peeled off.

    You never know when or where a green post box could pop up near you!

  • Gertntfe

    ” Irish government funding” You’re having a laugh, right?

    That would be the European money doled out to Irish government. And where does the European dosh come from? Net contributors like the UK. So the roads, like the postboxes, are paid for by the British.

    You don’t have to say thanks, but it would be polite.

  • Guillaume

    You don’t have to say thanks, but it would be polite-Says Gertntfe.

    And we won’t.

    “Net contributors like the UK”-says he.

    and still no Queen on the Euro?You’re right, I am having a great laugh.

  • al

    You’ll be having a right laugh come budget time for post 2014 when you have to start paying back in to the pot you’ve been plundering for the last 30 odd years.

  • Pete Baker


    Try to focus on the actual topic.

    Rather than relying on a substitute argument for which you have overly-rehearsed positions readily at hand to deploy.

  • Guillaume

    Economic boilers the lot of ye.
    I couldn’t care less about whether we’re paying or getting paid.Has nobody told you that we are invincible?
    The point is that europe is orientated more to the Ireland than it is to the Britain, and that the queen is a net contributor to a projectbritain is afraid to take part in..Clinging to the empire…….

  • rubbish baker

    The anti-republican pete again trying to lecture forumistas about content?

    Is the world ending.

  • Mark McGregor


    Well since my area, which had/has a large SF vote, no longer has a functioning cuman nevermind local ogra I’ll not be holding my breath and if that’s the next community interaction after years of inactivity it’ll not make much impact on the parents and young people expecting improved community services, transport links, jobs, housing etc. etc

  • Ogra Abu!


    Sinn Féin and Ógra are active on all of the issues you have mentioned.

    Its a pity that all the issues which Ógra Shinn Féin work on such as suicide prevention, road safety, drug and alcohol awareness, anti-racism, equality issues and student fee’s to mention but a few, go largley un-noticed by the bloggers such as slugger o’toole and that Ógra painting post boxes is the only thing that grabs attention! That is not Ógra’s fault its the selectiveness of people to see what they want to see and complain about what they want to, ignorant of everything else.

  • Danny O’Connor

    I like the postboxes in good old socialist red.
    Even if they are painted green it will still say E II R on them, like dogs pissing out territory-that is all these wasters who deface public property( all public property) are doing-grow up Barry.

  • Cushy Glenn

    As for a standard shade, it’s my understanding that most of this lumpen culture so beloved of the poison dwarf MLA is..er… British racing green

  • Instead of wasting paint and slapping it over walls/ground/neighbouring buildings/pavements and doing a really patchy, rubbish job of painting the post boxes in the original victorian colour scheme – (by the way the royal markings need highlighted in gold paint)- why don’t you buy some fence paint or something and call round the houses of pensioners and ask them if they want their fences repainted or something useful?

  • Patrick

    ‘opportunity Omagh it is opposed by many in Omagh’?

    No its not-its opposed by a small number of traders in the town who are worried about their own petty interests. Anyone with half a brain cell would recognise that the £350 million pound development would draw trade into the town. It has been overwheky backed by the community and construction sectors and it would seem that the town centre traders are the only ones annoyed about the development.

    However I think my earlier question as to whether you are a serial grump has been definitively answered.

  • Wilde Rover


    “Yes good to see young people demonstrating they have never read James Connolly talking about the futility of changing the flag and painting the postboxes green, and thus don’t see the irony of this. Highlights them for the gormless muppets that they are.”


    It’s all just so much tilting at windmills.

  • Congal Claen

    Are Ógra Sinn Féin members uber Brits in disguise painting the boxes the original British colour?

    In Britain the first pillar post boxes were erected in Jersey in 1852. Roadside wall boxes first appeared in 1857 as a cheaper alternative to pillar boxes, especially in rural districts. In 1853 the first pillar box on the British mainland was erected at Botchergate, Carlisle. In 1856 Richard Redgrave of the Department of Science and Art designed an ornate pillar box for use in London and other large cities. In 1859 the design was improved, and this became the first National Standard pillar box. Green was adopted as the standard colour for the early Victorian post boxes. Between 1866 and 1879 the hexagonal Penfold post box became the standard design for pillar boxes and it was during this period that red was first adopted as the standard colour. The first boxes to be painted red were in London in July 1874, although it would be nearly 10 years before all the boxes had been repainted.

    Ógra Sinn Féin members should remember that the Brits quite like green. British racing green for example. I also believe that green is the highest colour in the Orange order.

  • Congal Claen

    btw, red was chosen over green for safety reasons. Maybe Ógra Sinn Féin members hope only Brits will crash into green boxes?

  • niall

    Good Patrick. I’d rather be a grump with a bit of perspective on what has been achieved and by whom than a subjugate of the republicsn machine.

    That’s 350 million for Omagh then, a town with too many houses, a falling birthrate and notwithstanding the trade from the south due to the euro a proabab’e retail recession. It’s a global thing.

    Sinn Fein on the economy? A joke. Thats why they got wiped in the last Dail elections and that’s what will undermine then in future.

    I’m fairly aware of the local economy btw and do have a vested interest in it in fairness.

    Opportunity Omagh is an opportunity to turn this place into Basildon/Harlow/Milton Keynes.

    Sinn Fein, vote to ape britain.

    That grumpy enough for you?

  • Conchuir O Fearain

    Wow, see how much offense has been caused by such a silly thing. Slighly hypocritical unionists.

  • Ogra Abu!

    Congal Claen,

    Go raibh maith agat for the history lesson, however it was totally irrelevant. They are painted green bacause this is the colour of Irish postboxes, nothing to do with the history of foreign countries.

  • Tyrone abu

    Opportunity Omagh will present us with another big useless white elephant, as the Sedan Ave., centre is fast becoming. As the world recession worsens, Next, M&S;, etc., will continue to downsize, sure isn’t it happening already on Sedan ave., with 2 or 3 of the retail spaces already vacant.

    Pat Doherty and Barry Duff have been very poor representatives for our area. We have no hospital left, no housing executive left, our services are among the poorest in Northern Ireland.

    I believe Sinn Fein will pay dear for their ineptitude in the coming elections. Let’s remember they have ‘succeeded’ electorally during unprecendented boom years in NI; when sectarian politics were the main focus of the electorate. Now that there are REAL issues to be confronted, Sinn Fein are showing themselves to be political bafoons- an embarassment to all of us.

    As for Opportunity Omagh- the funding is coming from US investors who expect high returns on all invested capital. Is the investment coming as a Venture Capital/Private Equity/Hedge fund venture? 18% interest rates?
    It really is all airy fairy nonsense- that none of the locals have actually been educated on- all they have been told is that Millions are arriving! All right minded people should oppose this development, and the fact that SINN FEIN are the proponents for such a measure is an indication of just how far they have strayed from their core beliefs. Sinn Fein are behind this investment- from foreign investors with only huge profits in mind- which will wipe out much of the native commerce in Omagh town. Shame!!!!!

    I am a republican from the area. I have voted for Sinn Fein in the past. They have betrayed us on every level that they can, and the sooner the voters waken up and understand those betrayals, the better. Sectarian politics got us nowhere- Barry can keep his green post box, oh the embarassment of it all!!!!!!

  • Up Tyrone!

    If you voted for SF on the basis of ‘sectarian politics’ then you were never a republican. You deserve to be disapointed – and embarassed!
    “Fingers fumbling in a greasy till” comes to mind, you’re hardly the first misguided ‘republican’ to feel deflated after getting what he wished for.

  • Tyrone Abu

    ‘If you voted for SF on the basis of ‘sectarian politics’ then you were never a republican. You deserve to be disapointed – and embarassed!
    “Fingers fumbling in a greasy till” comes to mind, you’re hardly the first misguided ‘republican’ to feel deflated after getting what he wished for. ‘

    I voted for Sinn fein because I believed they would uphold the ideals I believe in. Sadly that is not the case.

    Whether we want to believe it or not, most of us vote on sectarian lines- at some stage of our lives- it is our dirty little secret in Northern Ireland, isn’t it?

    I am not a misguided Republican. I remain a Republican. And personal attacks on a website are not my ambition!

    What my ambition is: A discussion on the issues confronting us all, republican or other wise. As the constitutional situation has been settled, with the collaboration of Sinn Fein, it is time to dissect the PR of all political parties, end our apathy, forgo our sectarian tendencies, and hold these highly paid inept nuisances accountable, with accurate and fair minded analysis of their performance.


    So can we begin with Opportunity Omagh? What are the ramifications of such a development for the people of the area?

  • niall

    Tyrone Abu,

    This constituency has terrible representation at all levels.

    But as long as Sinn Fein do the meet and greet as per Patrick in his posts above they will continue to be grand lads.

    It is exactly like the Bush factor in middle america, a campaign of inverted snobbery, “our boyos are’nt sofficticated but they’ll tell them otherans this is our place here”.

    Opportunity Omagh is a total disgrace showing complete disregard for the evolution of our market town over hundreds of years.

    Sinn Feinn will gladly sell it up for the dollar and the euro and a couple of years of construction contracts.

    Where is there education policy? What are they aiming Omagh toward? Forever building and knocking down stuff it would appear while the fruits of investments (if materialising) go where.

    McElduff is an embarassment, I went to the same school as himand by all accounts he has remained the person he was then too.

    But he’s a grand fellow with his smart answers for them ther Belfast journalists, they’ll not get the better of our awarra.

    We get the politicians we deserve tho.

    I do think at times the likes of Sinn Fein who want to destroy the education system as is despite the protestations of many would relish tyranny of the majority.

    A horrible inept crowd in west Tyrone.

    And I too am some sort of republican.

    Painting post boxes my ass.

  • Congal Claen

    Hi ogra abu,

    “Go raibh maith agat for the history lesson, however it was totally irrelevant. They are painted green bacause this is the colour of Irish postboxes, nothing to do with the history of foreign countries.”

    I fear your reading of history might have a slight green tinge to it as well.

  • Tyrone abu

    ‘are painted green bacause this is the colour of Irish postboxes, nothing to do with the history of foreign countries.”

    What colour is the soon to be completely empty Tyrone Hospital to be painted?
    What about the soon to be completely empty Housing Executive offices?
    What about the mad grab housing development that has left the likes of the Gortin road a shell- empty houses as far as the eye can see, with little other development or facilities?

    Really, are we seriously accepting ‘painting the post box green’ as legitimate Sinn Fein policy? Or, are we smart enough to recognise that it is the very cynical manipulation of halfwits in an attempt to distract those halfwits of the crumbling reality around them?

  • June

    It seems this has been turned into a SF bashing exercise by a few people who seem to ‘know it all’.
    However the people of West Tyrone have clearly spoken. They have elected 3 Sinn Fein MLAs and a Sinn Féin MP. It is clear that the above ‘know it alls’ who are claiming to be from West Tyrone are clearly outnumbered and a minority in their own constituency.

  • niall


    Thats right Sinn Fein are in power and the alternatives have problems all of their own.

    Whats your point tho – don’t be critical of those who have the mandate? – to tell us to accept tyranny of the majority or you’ll send the boys round?

    Funny how when the shinners get a run of good results they want to challenge any debate with the ‘well we have a mandate’ therefore the decisions we make and our progress (and lack of) is endorsed and therefore legitimate lawful failure to make progress.

    Sinn Fein have had West Tyrone in a decade when they haven’t had a notion about the economy, other than the celtic tiger blew an affluent apparent wind worth boasting over.

    The lack of real understanding was exposed when Gerry went to debate on RTE. Now of course they’ll be hoping for a protest vote in the south as vindication for their ignorance while regurgitating the explanations of economic downfall after the fact as their own analysis.

    Lets see how their vote stands up in the next decade then.

    Great this internet init.

    Knowing it all is a lonely place to be?

  • niall


    and why do you question my being a constituent of Paddy and Barry? Makes you angry doesn’t it to have disagreement from ‘one of your own’. Means statements SF love like ‘the people of west tyrone think/want etc’ don’t have the same conviction?

    SF have had the kitten gloves for ten years.

    People with an appetite for politics have stayed quiet while society tamed the aggressors.

    They will not get it so easy in future in West Tyrone or anywhere else.

    As for McElduff he is an embarassment.

  • Ogra Abu!

    no I have to agree with June. All I can hear is this angry little anti-sinn féin rant from one voice. You dont represent the whole of west tyrone so don’t try and preach on their behalf.

  • June

    Niall as I said it is clear that you are a minority opinion in the W Tyrone constituency. The people have elected 18 Sinn Fein Councillors (Between Omagh and Strabane District Councils) have 3 Sinn Fein MLAs and one Sinn Fein MP.
    So it is very evident you are a minority view in West Tyrone.

    [play the ball – edited moderator]

  • Mayoman

    Just a thought. If the colour is so unimportant, do all those who post here sneering at Ogra agree that once they are painted green, they should stay that way? Isn’t painting them back to red (at the tax payers expense) equally as silly? Come now its only a colour….isn’t it??

  • Congal Claen

    Hi Mayoman,

    Apparently they get repainted every 3 years. So, they’ll revert to red over time. I personally wouldn’t be going out to paint them red myself. That would cover up their silliness.

  • niall


    One little voice ogra, but from such things. Wouldn’t it be reat if you could silence the one little voice so when they come for you and me there’ll be no one left to speak?


    you restate the mandate which is the standard shinner response nowadays to being questioned.

    Not too good at being the establishment are they after being on the outside for so long. It is my view that many have been just giving the orwellian shinners a chance to get comfortable. Of course you are welcome to disagree and prove me wrong in my view of their long term effectiveness.

    As for having your comments removed for ball playing that’s not good is it.

    Be honest you’d love to send the boys round, bloody democratic internet chatter as Barry McElduff would say “he wouldn’t go over that auld chat if the boys knew who he was, we’d “discuss” it with him – wink wink wink……..

    Sinn Fein, administering British rule in ireland while being dishonest about it and also doing it badly for West Tyrone.

    Be easier to just paint the furniture green………

  • Conchuir O Fearain

    I think the dissidents need to get a hold of themselves. If they want to keep fighting the Brits, they are living in the past. I know I’d like to walk down the road, without army everywhere, and not worrying about being blown up. Its time to move on, that what the peace process is about. Due to this concessions, naturally must be made, if we want to create a normal political situation in the Six Counties.