“directing British policy and directing the occupation of Ireland”.

Ahead of tomorrow’s vote in the Northern Ireland Assembly on devolving policing and justice powers, The Guardian’s Henry McDonald has been speaking to the vice-president of Republican Sinn Féin, Geraldine Taylor, at the party’s Falls Road headquarters. From The Guardian report

But Geraldine Taylor, the veteran west Belfast republican and vice-president of RSF, said whoever got elected to the post would be “directing British policy and directing the occupation of Ireland”.

At the party’s Falls Road headquarters, flanked by a number of young republicans from the North Armagh area where the CIRA has a growing base, Taylor said a new justice minister would be “part and parcel of the British crown”.

Asked how the new minister would be regarded by what she called the “Republican Movement” (the umbrella term encompassing RSF and CIRA), Taylor replied: “They would be an enemy of the Irish people in just the same way as a British soldier or police officer serving in the PSNI/RUC.”

Also from the report

Between them the DUP and Sinn Féin have enough votes in the assembly to elect Ford to the post. The other two parties in the Stormont power-sharing coalition, the SDLP and the Ulster Unionists, confirmed over the weekend that they would not be backing Ford for the job.

Regardless however of the outcome of Tuesday’s vote in the assembly it is clear that in the small pockets of support that the Real IRA and CIRA enjoy there seems little chance that the final act of devolution will deter the dissidents from “armed struggle”.

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  • FitzjamesHorse

    “At the party’s Falls Road headquarters, flanked by a number of young republicans from the North Armagh”

    which translates as “no young Republicans in West Belfast so we had to bus these flankers in from Lurgan”

  • Paddy

    Not advocating anything but if RSF/CIRA were to reat McGuinness et al as Crown forces or if they were to do a “Republicans against Pedos” attack on anyone associated with the Pervies, my money would be on the Pervies.
    Outside of politics, it is a damning pity groups like RSF in particular refuse to wake up and smell the coffee.
    If one were to take all the energy and prison years that went into the Perives and apply it elsewhere, how different things might have been.

    RSF/CIRA still look for young Republican fodder. Its leaders, like those in PSF, feel they were made for greater things. Loose thinking costs lives.

  • old school

    I believe the Republicans from Lurgan were there to highlight the firing of plastic bullets in their streets last week, and ongoing harassment of their members in the area.
    I´ve no doubt there are many young Republicans in West Belfast.

  • old school

    Thats the first I heard about the PSF Civil Servant lambasting and deriding working class rioters for being unemployed and scroungers.
    It could´ve been a quote from a Tory Cllr.
    How “New rich”.
    Must be nice to live amongst “scum” and have a well paid Government job with perks, in the middle of a recession

  • FitzjamesHorse

    Oh my goodnees….how awful.

  • old school

    Particularly considering Adams and Mc Guinness spent over 50 years collectively on the dole.

  • Pete, would it be fair to day that you are a little excited at there being some threat to SF in their own backyard?

    From the UUP perspective, having seperated themselves from the Tory position it must be heartening for them to have someone as well as the TUV who shares their views on the Hillsborough deal.

    Nice little coalition of the unwilling coming together here, perhaps they can put their diffferences aside and have a joint press conference next time.

  • FitzjamesHorse

    There is no threat to SF-IRA. None

  • LabourNIman

    Geraldine Taylor – short sighted, ignorant and a one issue complainer. I’m shocked she’s never been elected to anything. Seriously..

  • Of all the reasons given for the devolution of P&J, the most dishonest is the suggestion, or inference, that somehow this single act will banish political criminality forever. It won’t. Looking at the Assembly/Exec etc, it might be asked are those institutions be robust enough to stand up to the sort of criminal violence that is directed towards the State generally (of which SF is viewed as a part)?

  • Alias

    The advantage the other state-sponsored murder gangs is that their terror campaign created the political conditions wherein the nation she purports to represent was willing to trade its national rights in return for a cessation of activity by those murder gangs. The advantage of the other murder gangs is that they reinforce that rejection of national rights by presenting the alternative to not continuing to reject those rights as being a return to that terror campaign.

    There is no reason to suppose that these new murder gangs are not state-sponsored, so anyone foolish enough to join them would simply be used to consolidate British sovereignty over the state in the same way that the other murder gangs were used.

    If they didn’t exist, the British state would invent them…

  • al

    PSNI/RUC someone’s got their spin the wrong way round

  • Paddy

    CIRA/RSF just don’t have support. A CIRA connected of friend of mine went to Bodenstown (the holiest place in Ireland) for the RSF bash some years ago. Meeting ex prisoners from staunch heartlands (East Tyrone, North Belfast etc), he asked where were the rest of the lads. He was told: Wed are it. No more exist.

    Ther is no hope of stoking up Lurgan or anywhere else into a 1970s type bush fire. Why bother?

    Look at all the British soldiers getting whacked in Afghanistan. The RIRA/CIRA have no hope of getting in that league. Why not obey Frank Aken’s maxim of dumping arms and waiting for brighter days?

    It is very wrong that some poor young gobshite in Lurgan or God’s Own Country will answer the call and end up doing 20+ years, with nothing but a few unread platitudes in Saoirse to console/embitter him?

    The last time Ruairi the elder did time was in the 1950s. His sons and grand sons have yet to don the felon’s cap.

    The war is over. That may be good or bad but it is a fact. If you really want to hurt British soldiers, get women (or men) to give them the clap. Higher success chances.

  • The biggest enemy the Irish people have are these deaf, dumb and blind followers of lunacy. It is neither trendy or glamorous to belong to these groups.

    The lady holds court in W Belfast, blithely ignoring outstanding allegations of child abuse and rape, against members of ‘republican’ groups.

    Her time would be better spent warning young people against the excesses of the violent few and demanding the arrest of the murderers of Mr R McCartney and Mr P Quinn.

  • Paddy

    “There is no reason to suppose that these new murder gangs are not state-sponsored, so anyone foolish enough to join them would simply be used to consolidate British sovereignty over the state in the same way that the other murder gangs were used.

    If they didn’t exist, the British state would invent them…”

    Giving them the benefit of the doubt, they are too easy to second guess. They do not have the hunman or other skilled resources for spectaculars: Omagh was one of a series of town bomb atacks but the INLA and others have now moved on.

    They don’t have the $$$ to buy serious hardware and they do not have enough fish to populate the river (changing Mao’s dictum).

    MI5 etc are waiting for them. Unlike 1970, they have a good idea where to look for the ringleaders/ brains.

    Mr Paisley says if St Pat were alive today, he would be a born again Free Presb. I do not think St Pat Pearse would be whacking nobodies in Derry. He would be living in his harmless bubble. Not so RIRA etc. The days of giving the Brits a run for their money are gone for at least a long time.

    It is like telling children to stop dysfunctional behaviour. Ain’t gonna happen.

  • Henry94

    Geraldine Taylor Is no doubt gearing up for an exciting election in West Belfast as RSF try to close that seven vote gap between themselves and The Workers Party.

  • old school

    Politics isn´t about being popular, it´s about having a belief system which you sincerely believe is correct and defending it. It´s not the x Factor.
    These guys might not be the most`popular kids in the block, but militant Republicanism never had a popular mandate.
    The IRA in the 40s and 50s were hopelessly fractured, and there were up to 4 groups claiming to be the IRA in the Curragh Camp. At one time only 30 members attended the Sinn Fein Ard Fheis.
    Decade after decade these people were written off.
    It´s foolish to doubt their tenacity and zeal.
    They´ve been in worse condition in their 300 year old history.

  • old school

    By the way, does the rule, “play the ball not the man” not apply in threads concerning Republican “dissidents”.
    I sense a lot of sniping at Geraldine Taylor.

  • The Republican Network for Unity (RNU) denounces a call by PSNI Chief, Matt Baggot in which he encourages Irish children to become informers and betray their relatives.

    One of the most crucial aspects of a child’s life is to have a loving and safe family. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). When children’s rights were formally recognised and safeguarded under international law. Surely, it is against a child’s basic right to be asked to inform on their mothers and fathers?

    Therefore, RNU call upon the North’s Children’s Commissioner, Human Rights Groups and Politicians’ to investigate Mr. Baggot’s comments to exploit children.

  • It seems strange to hear a call to investigate the PSNI chief when allegations about known republicans are outstanding.

    It is indeed the right of every child to have a safe. secure and above all loving home environment. It is something allegedly denied to some republican children. I totally agree we will have to investigate the police, especially the old RUC and other security services. It cannot happen until outstanding allegations are dealt with. No doubt those accused, eager for their day in court, will be surrendering themselves as quickly as transport allows.

    Old School

    The history may go back 300 years, but the allegations of child abuse and rape are relatively recent. It ill becomes a woman to proclaim the movement whilst simultaneously ignoring the most serious allegations ever made against anyone, whatever group they belong to. Children are not canon fodder and nor are they a convenient back drop, they are our future.

  • Democrat

    oldschool wrote: “Politics isn´t about being popular, it´s about having a belief system which you sincerely believe is correct and defending it.”

    Unfortunately stupid people pick stupid belief systems. If everyone thought that their sincere beliefs entitled them to kill people of a different outlook, then every day would be a massacre. Time the dimwits thought their ideology through.

    “militant Republicanism never had a popular mandate.”

    But they never stopped to wonder why. Perhaps some elementary education on why democracy is better than slaughter would have helped.

    “Decade after decade these people were written off.”

    Quite right too. What have they got to offer, except murder, brutality and a fascist ideology which tells them to kill their Protestant neighbours.

    “It´s foolish to doubt their tenacity and zeal.”

    No doubt. It’s their stupidity and ruthlessness that bothers me.

    “They´ve been in worse condition in their 300 year old history.”

    Only 300 years? England turned Protestant in 1530. So I would say the Wars of Religion on these islands started 480 years ago. Luckily, most other countries in Europe (the Wars ravaged much of Europe for centuries) and most other peoples have come to their senses and stopped killing each other over sectarian differences long, long ago. Let’s hope that the dimwits catch up soon.

  • aquifer

    Standing on a fattened coffin for a stage
    A pistol so no-one calls you fool
    As you fail to act your age, or for your class
    Making snuff video for cruel connoisseurs

  • Bubbler

    Ardoyne Republican,

    Might you direct the rest of us lesser-informed readers to where you found this statement of intent to ‘exploit’ the children of Ireland?

    If it’s true it’s utterly despicable, and should absolutely be examined and denounced. But if it’s not, it would be despicable of you to make those allegations, presumably because you don’t trust or accept the PSNI.

    But I for one would like the chance to decide for myself.

  • old school

    Your synopsis of Republican history and allegations that it is sectarian based shows political naivety.
    No Republican militant separatist movement ever enjoyed popular support. Mostly due to fear of arrest, imprisonment, loss of employment and general hard life. There my have been an element of tacit support, but this too was covert.
    Im in the middle of reading a book based on the “dynamite campaign of the 1880s” It was so unpopular recruits had to be shipped in all the way from America. Most were arrested as they docked in Liverpool due to infiltration. The families of those arrested in Ireland were treated like political pariahs, and were reliant on handouts from America to stay alive. Many Republican widows died homess due to society repulsion of them.
    Years later, long after the campaign, they were honoured.
    Even Pearse wrote before he was killed, “People will say harsh things of us now , but future generations will honour us.” He was right, and indeed this has been the case generation after generation. And will be the case in the future also.

  • aquifer

    Do you admire Al Quida? Old School

  • Old School

    It is easy to romanticise these gangs from the safety of hundreds of miles, a warm sofa and a lap top. It is very different for the families who find themselves surrounded by thugs, for the children being abused and told not to report that abuse to the authorities. To the young girls raped by gang members, unable to get help.

    If we see nothing else in the past we should see the danger of allowing some people to become above the law.

    Time you took your rose tinted glasses off.

  • old school

    Why do you ask, Aquifer?
    Is there a relevance to the debate, or are you just baiting?