No to Fermanagh no go

Turgon must be out at church or somewhere, otherwise he would have leapt on this leaked report.

Parts of south Fermanagh are now considered ‘no-go areas’ for PSNI patrols because of the CIRA which has established a stronghold in certain areas,” said a security source. “As a result, there is no effective policing of villages like Roslea, Lisnaskea, Newtownbutler and Donagh in Fermanagh. Police patrols that venture into these areas are likely to be attacked. There is no doubt that the CIRA has established itself in these villages. In fact, they are the only republican paramilitary group active in these areas and they have some local support, which makes conducting surveillance on key suspects almost impossible.

A dangerous low intensity struggle is going on which probably has yet to peak. Whatever your political views, this simply must not be allowed to last. The unnamed security source is ridiculously negative. Public support is essential we know that, but the shadow of the past mustn’t allow the situation to fester. If they “know” people, they can act eventually. The PSNI and the local policing partnership have got to show their mettle. Experience of the Troubles shows how sensitively the police need to handle the situation. Remember that even in the days of the old Stormont, the border campaign of the late 50s was defeated not mainly by the RUC and the B Specials but by the will of the Catholic community. Let’s hope the older pattern repeats itself and that the a new political order proves its worth. BTW if they know so much about the dissidents why don’t they lay off Suzanne Breen? Update Thanks to pigeon toes ( interesting self image, that) for noting it below, its worth highlighting Henry McDonald’s report that MI5 are setting side £40 million to tackle dissident republicans in Fermanagh and elsewhere. Let’s hope the info was dropped as evidence of real activity. The Abbas Boutrab report is gen , as Pete noted four years ago.

  • Turgon

    I have been told this sort of thing recently. I have long argued that the conflict here is inherently insoluble and that we are heading towards a Border Campaign type of problem, with the greatest concentration of it being in South Fermanagh.

    Incidentally since you have named me in one of your blogs Brain, I see that you are uncharacteristically reticent to defend Eames Bradley on my blog about the Shankill Butchers.

  • “the shadow of the past mustn’t allow the situation to fester.”

    So when are you going to outline in detail the players in our policing and justice system, Brian?

    It’s very easy to point the finger at the local police and DPP and decry the comments of the security source but you may be referring to the minor players and the source may be right on the button.

  • Rory Carr

    …the border campaign of the late 50s was defeated not mainly by the RUC and the B Specials but by the will of the Catholic community.

    I’m not quite convinced of that. I would say that it was more because of a lack of will among nationalists to risk their own safety in support of a campaign that was wildly idealistic and without any of the grounding in militant social discontent that was such a feature of the Provisional campaign and which was to motivate so many of their recruits and those willing to provide logistical support. It is not that Nationalist will was so opposed to the campaign (which opposition might have, but did not, manifest itself in widespread “informing”) but rather that there was not sufficient will in support of the campaign to allow it to flourish.

    Given such conditions once internment was introduced on both sides of the border it really was ‘game over’.

    While Turgon’s assertion “that the conflict here is inherently insoluble” seems a strange admission indeed coming from him I am afraid that I cannot share his long standing wet dream of a sustained Republican border campaign being a real or immanent threat. Neither the social conditions nor the political will among nationalists exists today either.

  • Rory, I’d have thought that the roles of the Irish authorities would also have been very influential. Reactions are at least as actions in our political history so 2016 IMO needs to be approached with circumspection.

  • oops – reactions are at least as important as actions

  • Pigeon Toes
    “MI5 spends £40m tracking IRA dissidents and al-Qaida.. MI5 is spending £40m a year in counter-terrorist operations in Northern Ireland. In a bid to stop the Real IRA, Continuity IRA and the Óglaigh na hÉireann faction from destabilising power sharing, MI5 has set aside 15% of its annual £250m budget, the Observer has learned..

    One of al-Qaida’s most elusive activists, Abbas Boutrab, was living outside Belfast until his arrest and conviction.”

    Is it me or is there something really wrong with that last sentence?

  • Pigeon Toes

    The arrest of Abbas Boutrab was not intelligence based.

    “Esmond Adair, who led the investigation, said “a very dangerous man” had been taken off the streets and that Abbas Boutrab was not his real name, but another assumed identity.

    “Abbas Boutrab remains a determined terrorist who has become expert in the procurement and forging of false identities,” he said.

    “I believe he has a strong allegiance to a terrorist group that is linked to the al-Qaeda network.”

    He said police believed Boutrab had lived and operated throughout Europe and that the discovery of an international terrorist in Northern Ireland was “unusual.”

    Can we look forward to Bin Laden found in Cave (Hill)?

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