“Murderous intent”

The senior police officer in charge of North Belfast in recent days has accused some rioters of “murderous intent.”

ACC Alistair Finlay spoke on’Nolan’ of injuries sustained by one of his female officers when a ‘coping stone’ was dropped from a height on her from the shops at Ardoyne.

Mr Finlay suggested he and his colleagues will treat this attack as ‘attempted murder.’

ACC Finlay also challenged the leadership of the First and deputy first minister during this period. He said neither of them was in touch with him in the lead into the Twelth period.

Police say seventy baton rounds were fired and fifty five PSNI officers were injured in the rioting.

Eamonn Mallie

  • It would be pretty shocking if the First or Dep First Minister had been in touch with the police in the run-up to the Twelfth. Had they done so they would have been accused (rightly) of interfering in operational matters.

  • Glencoppagagh

    Do we really want to know the opinions of these pompous, overpaid plods? It’s time they were put back in their place.

  • JimRoche

    By showing heroic restraint the PSNI won this battle hands down. The riots organisers have no political advance to show for their actions. They have failed to set the agenda on any way and we have a two-day wonder rather than a turning point.

    As a nationalist I applaud the police for their outstanding bravery and their intelligent response. The riots had an objective and they failed.

  • Frank Ryan

    Thats rich coming from a police officer who authorised the firing of seventy baton rounds considering the fact that these weapons are lethal and have killed around 17 individuals in the past.

    Jim Roche – ‘as a nationalist I applaud the police’ – bit of an oxymoron there as the PSNI are a British partitionist police force so how can you as a nationalist support an occupying force. I think you’ll find you are a unionist.

  • Realistic Idealist

    I have no love for the PSNI, and as a Republican will take a lot of years yet to trust them, however I have to agree with JimRoche above. The dissidents have almost zero support and they know the only way they can gain support is to orchestrate situations in which events spiral out of control. The PSNI appear to have learned lessons from the past, both in their restraint in riot situations and the caution they are showing in relation to obvious dissident ambushes. If martyrs are created on either side, that’s the beginning of the troubles mark II, emotions will get out of hand and events will take a life of their own. The PSNI should hold their nerve and police intelligently.

    Incidentally, I just listened to the Nolan Show. Seemed to be only callers who either have no idea why on earth nationalists have an issue with orange parades (as if the orange order are akin to the Care-Bears) or those calling for the croppies to be put down with maximum force, just like the good old days (that strategy worked well back in 1969, didn’t it…)

    What people like Steven (with a PH) Nolan don’t realise is that the vast, vast majority of nationalists feel nothing but contempt and disgust towards the orange order and all it stands for, but most are too fearful to ever voice their opinion, this does not mean passive support as most in the media industry seem to think, when they cover “orange fest” as if it was as all inclusive as mardi gras

  • HeinzGuderian

    As a nat/rep……………do you also have the same disgust for the Orange bit on the roi flag ?? 🙂

  • A policewoman almost lost her life and people praise the do nothing tactics as intelligent.

    I think that calls into question the intelligence of those who apparently think lives in uniform come cheap.

  • Frank Ryan

    Realistic Idealist dont know how you can call yourself a republican and support the PSNI nor do I think that the PSNI showed restraint – they fired over 70 plastic baton rounds.

    St ettienne have a look at the utv footage of a republican youth being dragged away unconcious, presumably after being hit by a baton round. There was no verbal mention of that on the news it was just of a policewoman being knocked unconcious. Those who hold the mechanisms of power have the means of processing information and disseminating it to the people, the PSNI PR machine along with SF’s is in full flow – blame the ‘dissidents’ for everything.

    It seems that if you show any diveregence from sf’s ‘peace strategy’ you are labelled a dissident and a criminal. We are living in 1984.

  • bobbydylan

    70 plastic bullets fired.

    it clear that the murderous intent lay clearly with the “new” police force

  • Realistic Idealist

    Just to clarify, i’m sorry anyone got hurt as a result of the 12th parades/reactionary rioting and you are correct a police officer’s life is worth no less than anyone else’s (though seemingly a womans is worth more than a mans judging by the choice of phraseology, subconscious or not, used by many).

    you can question my intelligence all you want, but to qualify what I wrote above, I’ll just say that i’m thinking about this event in macro terms, putting it into context. While the attempted murder of an individual is terrible in any circumstance, events which could spiral out of control and potentially shatter the peace process would be much worse.

    I make my observations as some-one who knows the mind set of young Republicans close to the source. A lot of people seem to be blissfully unaware that there is a fresh generation of young Republicans and Loyalists out there who don’t know the horrors of the past. Thus far they have largely followed the mainstream and the peace process, it is up to politicians and the police through their actions, to ensure this remains the status quo.

  • Realistic Idealist

    Frank, i think we both know what the dissidents are aiming for and what they were hoping for yesterday. (don’t shit a shitter). When you bring a load of young people onto the streets in the manner which it was done, its with full knowledge there will be rioting, those taking part in a riot do so with the full knowledge the cops will come at them with force, if you don’t want a slap with a baton, firing bricks at peelers isn’t the best way to go about it.
    The orchestrator’s aim is to create a war zone, with the best possible outcome from their point of view in this instance being a huge overreaction from the cops, and hopefully drawing the loyalists in too for good measure – with the subsequent backlash by republicans and therefore increase in support for dissident groupings, particularly amongst the young and impressionable. The trouble is, the cops know this too.
    The wet dream scenario for the current dissident head-honcho’s is a repeat of the RUC turning the oppression of nationalists up to the max like back in the day, cue the violent reaction and upsurge in republican support, cue the brit army back on the streets and cue another 30 years – only with a lot less intelligent people leading the republican side.

  • Gerry Lvs Castro

    Frank — you complain that over 70 baton rounds were fired — what would you suggest should be the reaction in a major, orchestrated riot? Soothing music perhaps?

    This type of recreational rioting merely used the 12th as an excuse — witness riots in Lurgan and Derry where there were no contentious parades.

    You mention a youth being dragged off unconcious — sorry mate but if you choose to take part in a violent confrontation of any sort, you run the risk of getting hurt. Or maybe he was just getting a pint of milk for his granny?

    Stop making excuses for this type of crap.

  • Danny

    Fair enough, I’d support stopping the heroic police from using non-lethal weapons, if you support allowing them to use petrol bombs, bricks, and live shotguns to replace them.

  • Cynic

    Aye…. croppie lie down….lesse majesty is a treasonous offence

  • Cynic

    I think the idea was that they might do something in their respective communities to stop them trying to kill each other and the police in the middle. I know – a naiive concept isn’t it

  • Cynic


    Do you suggest they use lead ones? Or just let the two sides murder each other?

    There is a legal framework that controls how people express their human rights in parades and marches and counter protests The police were upholding the law. The protesters and rioters broke the law and were abusing the rights of the Orangemen and the police officers.

    So do you support the abuse of human rights? On what grounds? Racism or just sectarianism?

  • Cynic

    I think the OO is an outdated and anachronistic organisation but that is just my view just as your opinion is just yours. They too have a viewpoint and a right to march.

  • Cynic

    “presumably after being hit by a baton round”

    why do you presume? he may have been hit by a brick thrown by one of his drunken friends behind him, tripped on rubble or been suffering from a surfeit of WKD – which incidentally is a drink manufactured by a British Drinks company so I assume that in your universe it must have been developed specifically to rot the brains of young republicans and be sold in Ireland with the connivance of the evil PSNI and the British Security Services.

    As for living in 1984, form your comments on various posts I think you are more likely to be living in 1684 my friend.

  • Frank Ryan

    Realistic Idealist I didnt question the aims of the dissident groups – what they were attempting to achieve was obvious – the same thing thing the provisional movement did in previous years when they brought the same ‘anti-social’ elements on to the streets.

    Yet one of the issues surround the PSNI firing lethal force weapons and the justification for doing so. They have obligations under Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights – the right to life. What could happen and ultimately will happen is we will face a death of a person at the hands of these weapons, therefore breaching their obligations.

    The next issue is around contested legitimatacy and what we saw was what we, republicans in Ireland, have always seen. The British and their agents coming down on the side of the pro-british elements in Ireland. As a republican I can never support a policing arrangement within the context of the British state, which is endorsed by the provisional movement. Either you are a republican or not, you cant claim to be a republican yet support and administer the british occupation. You cant ride two horses at the same time.

    By demeaning anyone who opposes the sf strategy as less intelligent you are ignorant to the fact that many of the ‘dissidents’ are former members of the provisional movement, some of which held senior positions but as soon as they leave or disagree they are idiots??

    The less intelligent people are those who have believed all the lies peddled by a corrupt leadership who are more interested in their own selfish gratification than any aulturistic vision for Ireland. The history since 1998 tells this, no return to stormont – where are we now, no decommissioning – it happened, they havent gone away you know – oh yes they have!

    By merely stating we cant go back to the bad old days is no rationale for supporting a failed strategy, yet it is no excuse either for militarism which initiated on the wrong basis.

  • Frank Ryan

    Check the positive obligations that a state must fulfil in protecting a citizens right to life. Article 2 of the European Convention.

  • unlucky erb

    “It seems that if you show any diveregence from sf’s ‘peace strategy’ you are labelled a dissident and a criminal”

    No Frank, when you fill your ranks with death drivers, house breakers and known thugs you’re labelled a criminal. When you have an ‘army’ led by one of the biggest criminal extended families in west Belfast – you’re labelled a criminal.

    And in the case of Ardoyne when you undermine the genuine residents’ association and their plans for a peaceful protest you’re rightly blamed for these riots. The hoods and kids of the district were used by those professing to be republican for no other reason than they wanted a riot.

    How that advances the republic, or serves the Ardoyne community they cannot explain.

  • Realistic Idealist

    unlucky erb – i’ll second that.

    I’m outa hear before the whatbouting and who’s the real, proper, real republican competition starts. sadly frank, if your issues with the republican movement couldn’t be addressed satisfactorily before you split, I fear they won’t be on this thread on slugger. slan

  • Frank Ryan

    That residents group CARA is a sf front. They tried to diminish the standing of GARC as a front for dissidents but in fact GARC had a mandate from the people of Ardoyne.

    As far as i’m aware there are no such criminals in éirígí and it is not an ‘army’.

  • richard

    I am sick to death of riotous Republicans reprobates getting the kid glove treatment from the security forces. The facts are that had Loyalists been involved the PSNI would have used real bullets, not rubber batons.
    When Loyalists last rioted to the same degree, hundreds were arrested. PSNI officers even went to the A+E units of the hospitals and scooped those being treated for baton and live round inflicted injuries. I even heard of people with head injuries caused by PSNI bullets not going up to be treated for fear of arrest.
    One sided or what?

  • That’s what their party people on the ground would be doing? You’ll have to another new thread from Eamonn to see that the suggestion that contacting Finlay might be considered interfering in operational is considered absurd. I would have thought the proper response might be to show some evidence as to why it wouldn’t be operational.

  • unlucky erb

    “but in fact GARC had a mandate from the people of Ardoyne”

    Nice try Frank.

    GARC delivered a questionaire to people’s homes on which they stated the survey was being done in conjunction with Holy Cross Monastery. This was a lie. Indeed Fr Gary was so incensed he publicly disassociated himself and the chapel/monatsery from it.

    The GARC questionnaire asked people in the district if they objected to an Orange march through their community – and guess what?? They did object. This isn’t a mandate – it’s stating the bleeding obvious.

    At the public meeting in Holy Cross before the 12th residents made it clear to GARC they did not want the march. And they did not any violence in the area against it.

    In terms of the dissidents I was not referring to éirígí, but to the Contos who present themselves as an army but are just a mirror image of Adair and his C Company – hoods with a flag.

  • The problem seems to be that the ‘fronts’ care little about the residents, but are happy to claim the residents ‘mandate’ as an excuse for rioting.

    While all the focus is on Ardoyne, rioting was in many places far from parades. In Londonderry, family homes petrol bombed in Irish Street in the early hours of the 12th morning, police shot at after police car burnt in the Bogside.

  • Gerry Lvs Castro

    bobbydylan: ’70 plastic bullets fired.
    it clear that the murderous intent lay clearly with the “new” police force’

    Yeh sure bricks, breeze blocks and petrol bombs never hurt anyone.

  • Cynic

    Well, initially they were trying to get at their fellow citrizens who just happen to be citizens and who were exercising their (albeit curtailed) legal rights.

    So what do you suggest the Police should do?

    Let them assault and kill the Prods?

  • Cynic

    “GARC delivered a questionaire to people’s homes”

    … and who would dare say they didnt?

  • Cynic

    When you trap rats in a barrel they soon resort to cannibalism.

    Welcome to the Ardoyne barrel.

  • Cynic

    “therefore breaching their obligations.”

    No it wont. Article 2 clearly states

    Deprivation of life shall not be regarded as inflicted in contravention of this Article when it results from the use of force which is no more than absolutely necessary:

    (a)in defence of any person from unlawful violence;

    (b)in order to effect a lawful arrest or to prevent the escape of a person lawfully detained;

    (c)in action lawfully taken for the purpose of quelling a riot or insurrection.

    So under 2,1 (a) and (c) in these circumstance the test would easily be met in the course of a riot involving a murderous mob attempting to kill Protestants or indeed the Police Officers themselves who also have Article 2 protection

    Do try and keep up. Others have rights too.

  • Cynic

    See comment above. You are talking nonsense.

  • TheHorse

    Yes Cynic, just like the law abiding Orangemen at Drumcree and Springfield road who retorted to widespread violence when they didn’t get their way. At least we can see that these past few days were the actions of school children egged on by some sinister adults unlike the events mentioned above where some senior Unionist politicians were seen openly agreeing tactics with Loyalist terrorists who then went on to murder innocent people.

  • Cynic

    I was referring to the CARA / GARC dispute. However, for the record I hold no breif for the OO and think its an anachronism.

    However, members of the OO don’t agree and they have rights to express their views and march within the law.

    The problem is that many republicans create a law to control marching and then, when it doesn’t stop all marches, feel entitled to try to attack the OO and the Police. Its pure simple racism.

  • JimRoche

    Frankly if we were to allow you to decide who was pure enough in their hatred to be considered a nationalist then unionism would have nothing to worry about.

    It’s always interesting to see who is most cranky after an incident. It’s usually the losers and the trouble-makers lost badly last night.

  • Cynic

    …and for the record I would say just the same for Drumcree or anyone else who behaves in this way

  • Neil

    I was referring to the CARA / GARC dispute.

    The problem here (IMO) is that the residents know SF will use whatever they can as a bargaining tactic without consent from the residents. So if the DUP were to agree to something which SF saw as worthwhile, SF could and (again IMO) would offer them the right to march through Ardoyne.

    The residents are rightly scared that the party looking after their interests might screw them over for some other, higher profile goal which is of no benefit to the folk in Ardoyne but might garner votes from the Catholic middle classes elsewhere.

  • unlucky erb


    “The problem here (IMO) is that the residents know SF will use whatever they can as a bargaining tactic without consent from the residents”

    SF still have massive support in the area – as evinced in the recent elections. Despite the bluster from GARC, RNU, IRSP etc that they, and not the Shinners, represent the local community – none can claim anything approaching the mandate SF enjoys.

    SF have made their position on parades clear and unambiguous – they will support the wishes of residents. Locals do not want Orange coat-trailing and SF supports them in this.

    Oppoents of SF dangle the prospect of Gerry Kelly facilitating an Orange march to score cheap points. But this is nonsense – and accepted as such by residents who still overwhemingly vote for SF .

  • Frank Ryan

    I think you will find im not talking nonsense. The interpretation of article 2 by the Court in the case of McCann v UK insists that the state has positive obligations, on both a substantive and procedural level. The positive obligations in McCann include the preparation and planning of a security operation, in which the Court ruled that the security forces could have avoided the use of lethal force and arrested the three IRA members at an earlier stage.

    In this case this would mean that the police should have stopped the parade if they knew it would lead to violence therefore removing the need to use lethal force weapons. Or, alternatively withdrawn from the area at the earliest possible opportunity instead of remaining all night. No Police – Nobody to riot with.

  • Gerry Lvs Castro

    Frank Ryan: ‘No Police – Nobody to riot with.’

    Can only assume you’re trying to be funny. Withdraw the police and let the braindead thugs destroy the area before moving on to another one, doing some looting and maybe the odd rape before drifting off for a well deserved kip.

    Yes the state has responsibilities but so do citizens — if you choose to throw rocks and petrol bombs, chances are you’re going to have something thrown back which could potentially be lethal. That’s your choice.

  • Frank Ryan

    The citizen is not accountable to the Human Rights Act the domestic conversion of the European Convention, the state and its actors are.

    In the Gibralter case the deceased were attempting a bombing mission but the European court still ruled in their favour.

    Extra-judicial killings by the state are in fact illegal, and it is not the case that if a citizen chooses to “throw rocks and petrol bombs, chances are you’re going to have something thrown back which could potentially be lethal” – that is in all likelihood to be a breach of article 2 ECHR.

  • The start of the protest was peaceful – and successful. There was a sit down protest which forced the police to use force to move the protesters, and which the BBC announced they had at first failed to do. All good PR for the dissident cause, and then the riff raff turned up, and the police became the victims. The Ardoyne republicans are made to look like drunken thugs, when the boot should have been on the other foot!

    Sometimes you really could not make it up.

  • Dixie

    “Mr Finlay suggested he and his colleagues will treat this attack as ‘attempted murder.”

    If Mr Finlay were to study this news clip [after the ad] 00:20 in he’d see she was injured by the water-cannon dislodging not one but two pieces of masonry on top of her…


  • vanhelsing

    quality material frank, quality 🙂 Perhaps you would suggest firing marshmallows or perhaps giving the rioters ‘a good stern talking to’…

    I’ve never seen just restraint from a police force – or perhaps you haven’t watched the videos…

    Utter rubbish – well done…

  • vanhelsing

    Frank ——‘It seems that if you show any diveregence from sf’s ‘peace strategy’ you are labelled a dissident and a criminal. We are living in 1984′

    No YOU are living in 84’ [perhaps that’s were you want to be]

  • vanhelsing

    bobby – can I call you robert….?

    the police showed amazing restraint as even shinners on this site have admitted to.

    Just where do you think the rioters are taking us – backward or forward?

    Also how does this help the community of Ardoyne?

    The dogs in the street know who was behind this…

  • Dixie

    I hope you are right, I will try and watch it, but from what I have seen on tv so far, including the lunatics throwing stones etc when the officer was lying on the floor, suggests otherwise.

    To be fair. If it was a protester (to be polite) who did it. He had no way of knowing it was a woman he hit. It should not make a difference but of course it does.

  • Dixie

    Pippakin if you look you will see that the water cannon is still dislodging masonry while the other cops are pulling her clear.

  • Dixie

    Oh and it was described as ‘Dramatic police footage’ which I’m sure the PSNI studied closely but they still put out the lie that masonry was dropped on her…

  • Dixie

    I have not seen anything that proves it either way, but I do hope you are right. It does not however detract from the behaviour of the protesters in continuing to attack when the officer was lying on the ground clearly wounded.

    I have said on earlier comments on this thread and another that I believe the protesters did Ardoyne far more harm than good. Instead of talking about how innocent locals were dragged away from a peaceful protest in their own community, there has been nothing but talk about the attacks on the police.

    As for whatever the police have to say, I never listen to them.

  • bumper14

    The Water cannon would not have been used if there had been no riot, so even it did dislodge masonry the blame still lies solely with the Nationalist thugs who were bent on murder and mayhem.