“This would not be because the dissidents would be impressed by it.”

A, perhaps, somewhat optimistic suggestion from the latest IMC report [pdf file] regarding the devolution of policing and justice powers.

5.1 We have in this report identified the range and tempo of dissident republican activities as the most serious current threat. There are security and intelligence contributions to be made to addressing the developing problems. However, the early devolution of policing and justice powers to the Northern Ireland Assembly and Executive could provide a potent intervention. This would not be because the dissidents would be impressed by it. It would be because policing and justice would no longer be a point of contention across the political divide; rather, it would be a platform for co-operation against those trying to undermine the peace process.

Discussion on the detail of those powers continues at the Assembly and Executive Review Committee.

And, as Liam Clarke points out in The News Letter

It is hard to see how the devolution of policing became such a republican cause that Sinn Fein held up Executive meetings for five months over the head of it.

Whatever happens, the Chief Constable will retain operational independence and the Policing Board will hold his force accountable.

The minister will do little more than administer the budget, though there may be more work on the justice side.

When Sinn Fein and the British government made it such a big issue that gave the DUP leverage which Peter Robinson used to extract concessions.
It all happened inside the beltway, with relatively little public interest in the outcome, but the money was real enough.

A quick reminder of why Sinn Féin have been so exercised about devolving those powers as soon as possible.

, , , ,

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    Another little reminder to the DUP that their anti-agreement stance is not only holding up the political process but also contributing negatively to the peace process.

    No doubt lost of wriggling with phrases such as “A, perhaps, somewhat optimistic suggestion ” to follow on here from sundry Unionists trying to deflect atttention on to something – anything else other than the DUP’s exposed postion.

    Pete,

    exactly the same Paragrpah from the Newsletter was posted on here yesterday by Mick – it is a particualry poor piece which I presume you felt we needed to see again, in spite of its lack of quality, as a counterbalance to the political kick up the DUP’s jacksie administered by the IMC.

    Keep up the good work – Robbo will need all the political cover he can get.

  • Cato

    In my opinion, your contention that Sinn Fein “need” these powers to be devolved rather than “want” them for the political capital which they will accrue subsequently is profoundly mistaken.

    Sinn Fein’s political success in this part of Ireland will not be dictated by a handful of republican theorists who judge that a delay in the devolution of justice means the strategy is off the rails.

    Its success will be dictated by the thousands of young Catholics who are pouring out of universities here and coming home from universities in England and Wales eager to vote for Sinn Fein in rapidly increasing numbers.

    Will they be put off voting for SF because of a delay in the devolution of policing and justice? Come off it. Let’s deal with the realpolitik rather than microtheory and counter microtheory.

    I turn now to surmise why you continue to ignore this realpolitik and instead focus on your microtheory which can be summarised thus:

    SF as a political movement is likely to be severely damaged if policing and justice is not devolved soon.

    Setting aside the fact that it will be devolved soon – history tells us that when the British Government and SF both want something it happens – your repeated contentions of impending doom for Sinn Fein are motivated by your anger, despair, disgust at the continued success of the movement in this part of Ireland.

    Seeing these new young republican voters, thousands of whom are from families who would never have designated themselves republican before, living in areas where they were previously unwelcome, coming more to the fore in every area of civic life, for example dominating the legal profession, proudly demonstrating their love of gaelic games and Irish culture, sticks in your craw, because it more than anything threatens the union as we knew it, the sort of union where Britishness dominated and Irishness was treated as second class.

    That union is gone and casting around desperately like a drowning rat, supposing that a delay in the devolution of policing and justice will slay the beast and bring us all back to where we were before, is pathetic.

  • borderline

    erm…..

    all well and good Cato, as long as you realise Pete was simply quoting Maurice Hayes.

    Still an’all, P&J slips increasingly into the hands of Irishmen, who all want to be policed in a just fashion.

  • Cato

    Is there anyone who would seriously dispute that it isn’t also his opinion? Those who consistently and continually post the same links, spouting the same line, can reasonably be judged to share that view.

  • Pete Baker

    I see Sammy Mac isn’t the only one kindly inventing opinions and motives on my behalf.

    Guys

    If you have a question relating to the original post, just ask.

  • Itwas SammyMcNally whatdoneit

    re. “I see Sammy Mac isn’t the only one kindly inventing opinions and motives on my behalf.”

    Oh I see, why then, pray tell, did you rehash a badly written, disingenuous article that Mick treated us to yesterday – it has no relevance to the IMC contention that

    “It would be because policing and justice would no longer be a point of contention across the political divide; rather, it would be a platform for co-operation against those trying to undermine the peace”.

  • Pete Baker

    Sammy

    Leaving aside your pejorative description of the article – and the irony of you calling someone else “disingenuous” is noted.

    It’s referenced because of the quoted section in the original post.

    In particular

    Whatever happens, the Chief Constable will retain operational independence and the Policing Board will hold his force accountable.

    You do know why that’s relevant, don’t you?

  • Cato

    Pete

    I think you need to quote who it was that said other than that the Chief Constable would hold operational independence.