Haass Talks: Reconciling the Orange and the Green to the same past will not work

Eamon McCann, an enthusiastic scholar of canon law, has a decent eye for contractual detail… In today’s Irish Times he offers this thoughtful insight

One key aspect of the flags dispute is that all who signed up to the Belfast Agreement accepted implicitly that Northern Ireland will remain within the United Kingdom for as long as there is no majority for a united Ireland: that is to say, for as far into the future as it is possible to see.

Sinn Féin leaders insist that this isn’t so, that the agreement opens the way towards a united Ireland. A majority of their membership seems to have swallowed this whole. But it is not an analysis that would survive a reading of the text.

The logic of the agreement’s constitutional provisions is that the union flag should fly over buildings and installations representing the UK on as many days of the year as the flag-folk desire – over the Northern Ireland Office, for example. But the agreement guarantees equality between “the two communities”. So the union flag would not as of right flutter above buildings housing elements of the devolved administration: the Stormont Assembly building comes to mind, or Belfast City Hall.

“This could work” he adds, prayerfully perhaps. But he concludes that the past is a hurdle too far, at least for the current incumbents…

If the Castlederg volunteers had no legitimacy, then neither did those who gave their lives in the War of Independence. Whether this claim to noble succession is justified – it isn’t – will make no difference to the talks. For Sinn Féin to accept or split the difference with the Unionist view would be to repudiate not just the Provo campaign but the Republican tradition itself. This is not going to happen.

No solution based on reconciling the Orange and the Green will work. Fortunately, there is a swathe of Northern opinion – polls suggest it currently runs at about 30 per cent – that does not adhere to Orangeism or Greenery. Of course, this isn’t reflected in political representation.

Sort that one out and we might be in business.

,

  • FDM

    “The logic of the agreement’s constitutional provisions”.

    Could you be any more wooly, even if you were a sheep.

    Bahhh.

  • Drumlins Rock

    The key word is devolved, those building remain part of HMG. In a straight forward democracy a Unionist majority at Stormont would fly the flag all the time. Just like most councils go by the majority vote. But we don’t have that system so at Stormont and petty carve up of councils amounts to a form of ghettoization, I genuinely hope a sensible compromise can be reached that has a uniform policy, but always allowing room for exceptions.

  • BifterGreenthumb

    “No solution based on reconciling the Orange and the Green will work. Fortunately, there is a swathe of Northern opinion – polls suggest it currently runs at about 30 per cent – that does not adhere to Orangeism or Greenery. Of course, this isn’t reflected in political representation.”

    That about sums it up really. Orange Unionism and Nationalist Republicanism have nothing to offer the people living in NI. Tribal politics and the constituational question are only important because of all this identity politics nonsense. Life down south aint any different to life up here. A united ireland is nothing to fear but neither is it worth any effort to bring about. Concentrating on the constitutional question just serves to reinforce tribal division which is the real problem here (and one which a united ireland or a continued place in the UK wont solve).

    Unionism need to ditch all that orange KKK nonsense and follow NI21 to neo-liberalism. Sinn fein needs to drop all that united ireland nationalist nonsense and become a proper socialist party. Then we can all start discussing issues that actually make a difference to our lives.

    This obviously isnt going to happen any time soon. I’m not sure how optimistic i am about the 30% non-aligned folk becoming any kind of anti/non-tribal political force either. fingers crossed though.

  • Morpheus

    Flags again eh? Here’s a wacky suggestion – let’s allow the elected officials in each of the district councils to democratically decide what their flag flying policy is. This, as in Belfast, should be nothing more than simple housekeeping.

  • Mick Fealty

    This last section of a Spotlight programme gives a taste of just how screwed up we are trying to get at the truth of the psat…

  • ” Orange Unionism and Nationalist Republicanism have nothing to offer the people living in NI. Tribal politics and the constituational question are only important because of all this identity politics nonsense.”

    @Bittergreen,

    If it was just a problem of republicans and Orange Order people it would be solvable. What makes it so difficult is that the extremists know how to appeal to more moderate tribalists by using coded language and appeals to a learned national history that is taught to NI’s sectarian school system. Politicians from the ruling duopoly and even the softer sectarian parties have too much invested in identity politics to want to attempt a solution. Dealing with the past is about detoxifying it or walling it off so that it becomes manageable like parades and flags can become through common-sense compromises. No agreed upon past is possible because the two narratives appeal to different traditions with their sense of right and wrong built in. It should be left to the historians to sort out.

  • aquifer

    Flag tax anyone? I find flags very taxing.

    We have one already. Too many flags suggest an area where small businesses still get extorted. e.g. The builders of a new protestant church!

  • Brian Walker

    Trouble is, Eamonn’s third way doesn’t exist –( yet? – foreseeably?) Passive rejection isn’t very meaningful. True, reconciliation between the Orange and Green versions isn’t possible but reconciliation of people, not necessarily of the huggy kissy kind is, called normal, mutually respectful human relations.

    Maybe take a leaf out of Pope Francis’ book (yes!) and can for a halt to banging on about what we all know we all think. By the way, equality will get you quite far but only so far. It might clear the decks for the sort of reconciliation described above to begin but it won’t make it happen.

    For that, we need, in that good phrase of our times, emotional intelligence.

  • ayeYerMa

    “If the Castlederg volunteers had no legitimacy, then neither did those who gave their lives in the War of Independence”

    I don’t know how he can come to that conclusion. Provo” volunteers”, and their objective, were vehemently opposed by the people in the area of question. Although we don’t have referenda or polling from the time to know exactly, the level of support during the War of Independence was not remotely equivalent.

  • DoppiaVu

    BifterGreenthumb – “A united ireland is nothing to fear but neither is it worth any effort to bring about”

    probably the wisest words I’ve read on Slugger for a while.

  • Morpheus

    BifterGreenthumb – “A united ireland is nothing to fear but neither is it worth any effort to bring about”

    The BT polls say that 44% are against reunification, 26% are for it (in 20 years) and 30% are undecided even in this economic climate. In one of the most divisive issues in Northern Ireland it’s well worth the effort to help those in the ‘don’t know’ camp fall into either the ‘yes’ or ‘no’ camp so we can move on.

  • Delphin

    BW indeed, the new Pope has been a breath of fresh air. Even if he is the head of a huge and sometimes malign organisation, his humility, humanity and intelligence shine through.
    Quote

    “Dialogue is born from an attitude of respect for the other person, from a conviction that the other person has something good to say. It assumes that there is room in the heart for the person’s point of view, opinion, and proposal. To dialogue entails a cordial reception, not a prior condemnation. In order to dialogue it is necessary to know how to lower the defenses, open the doors of the house, and offer human warmth”.

    Can the Mullahs in the gospel halls reciprocate?

    I must be getting old! Never thought I would see the day when I was impressed by a Pope.

  • Mick Fealty

    Brian,

    I’d agree with that criticism, but just isolating the word ‘reconciliation’ reminds me of that account operation where you have to make what it says in the day book of the company accounts with what it says in the cheque book.

    Can we really, under any circumstances, regardless of the details, ever expect that kind of ‘reconciliation’? In that respect, Eamon posits a realistic objection to the very exercise itself.

  • BifterGreenthumb

    Morpheus “In one of the most divisive issues in Northern Ireland it’s well worth the effort to help those in the ‘don’t know’ camp fall into either the ‘yes’ or ‘no’ camp so we can move on.”

    I’m not sure about that. It isn’t just a matter of ‘yes’, ‘no’ or ‘dont know’. You are leaving out the ‘dont care’.

    The constitutional question used to be important when protestants had (legitimate?) fears that they would be a persecuted minority in a united ireland or when Catholics were second class citizens in a unionist controlled Northern Ireland. Unionism and Republicanism were positions that had meaning then. But were living in the 21st century now. ROI is western secular capitalist democracy. To think that prods would be persecuted in united ireland is ridiculous and catholics in NI are now citizens with the same right as protestants. the Constitutional question has no practical import anymore. Does anyone really think that life would be significantly different in a UI?

    Concentrating on the constituational question, which people really only have sides on because of irrational identity issues, just reinforces tribal division. Trying to encourage people who dont know or dont care to take up a position is a backward step. The more people who dont know or dont care about the constituational position of NI the better as they are the ones that care about issues that actually matter (jobs, education, health care etc) rather that identity nonsense (flags, marching bands etc).

  • Morpheus[4.39] The whole flags row is just a symptom adn a cry for help from the bigots of unionism and loyalism. They know it’s not politic to openly admit it, but it’s not fear of their ‘culture’ being chipped away that has them on the strets, but a feeling of suffocation due to the ebbing away of their dominance and too many Catholcs in the ‘country they made’ so their real need is to get the British govt to find a way of evicting the ‘cuckoos’ they see in the nest, or repartition.
    What depresses them is the realisation the domination days are over, the polls showing increasing acceptance from nationalists[for now] of the union should be good news for unionists if they were giving notice of their real grudge, but ideally for them, catholics should hate NI but be unable to take it over. Unionism knows from the zero sum game that this is bad news for them.Their days in the sun are nearly done, Hence the street theatre.

  • FDM

    “Reconciling the Orange and the Green to the same past will not work” as the OP stated.

    All you have to do is listen to the ex-UDR man Jeffrey Donaldson of the DUP (previously UUP) explain on Nolan today that those who murdered all those British citizens on what he would call British streets in Derry and elsewhere were NOT actually victim makers.

    Additonally it seems Jeffrey has contracted “Arlene Foster Disease” [AFD] and has succumbed to Brian Robinson Selective Memory Loss [BRSML], an obvious symptom of AFD. AFD is also seen to manifest as being unable to recall individuals, circumstances, facts and events damaging to the PUL argument(s) if they happened in what Arlene termed “a city”, id est “How would I know what happened in … a CITY?” A city being a place where people not acquainted with cows reside.

    Very worrying times that AFD has actually started infecting people from Lisburn city, such as Jeffrey Donaldson. Is there any hope for these poor individuals? First we had mad cow disease [MCD], now AFD. Whatever next?

  • FDM. AFD is not confined to the not really duppers JD and AF, and the Jim Allister disease is now, to judge from Jonathan Bell’s cynical filibustering of Carruthers questioning of him on ‘The View’ last night. That was just too obviously a spoiling tactic so the viewer can’t hear the questions he doesn’t want to answer. Problem for the DUP with this approach to sabotaging interviews, is it shoows nationalist viewers how much on the defensive the unionist political class now is. Nelson McCausland took the exact same approach in his Red Mist[sorry, Sky] interview with the same Carruthers a few weeks ago. It glasddens the hearts of sf voters they’ve got under the DUP skin to such an exrtent to make Gerry Kelly look like the only gorown-up being interviewed. Interesting times ahead.for unionism

  • Kevsterino

    In my humble opinion, Captain O’Neill’s question all those years ago is just as relevant today, or more so, than when he first posed it. “What kind of Ulster do you want?”

    I don’t think there is a solution available for relatives grieving for their lost love ones. That, in itself, is tragic enough. The tragedy is compounded when new victims are made because of new acts of violence resulting from political failure to remove the causes of conflict.

  • Brian Walker

    Mick,
    Yes reconciliation is a personal even intimate thing and cannot be a government policy for society. With real people, having encountered about 250 of them at the height of their shock and grief, they behaved in a variety of ways and quite unpredictably. Years later they may have lots of different thoughts but I doubt if they are any more predictable.

    I think the idea of reconciliation as it as a kind of social policy derives of religion as part of the assumed social fabric in NI. Like religion it works for some but is not an orthodoxy. It may also be the outcome of therapeutic approaches like healing is remembering. Again it works for some.

    What is clearly possible is to remove the causes of institutional grievances and try putting yourself in the minds of the other. I have to admit that judging the other side by how much it has accommodated to my side without a reciprocal effort gets my goat like almost nothing else – even more than the old warriors who at least negotiated a strategic compromise. Emotional intelligence again, rather than the self satisfaction of the Pharisee.

  • FuturePhysicist

    “No solution based on reconciling the Orange and the Green will work. Fortunately, there is a swathe of Northern opinion – polls suggest it currently runs at about 30 per cent – that does not adhere to Orangeism or Greenery. Of course, this isn’t reflected in political representation.”

    That about sums it up really. Orange Unionism and Nationalist Republicanism have nothing to offer the people living in NI. Tribal politics and the constituational question are only important because of all this identity politics nonsense. Life down south aint any different to life up here. A united ireland is nothing to fear but neither is it worth any effort to bring about. Concentrating on the constitutional question just serves to reinforce tribal division which is the real problem here (and one which a united ireland or a continued place in the UK wont solve).

    Unionism need to ditch all that orange KKK nonsense and follow NI21 to neo-liberalism. Sinn fein needs to drop all that united ireland nationalist nonsense and become a proper socialist party. Then we can all start discussing issues that actually make a difference to our lives.

    This obviously isnt going to happen any time soon. I’m not sure how optimistic i am about the 30% non-aligned folk becoming any kind of anti/non-tribal political force either. fingers crossed though.

    My view would be a lot more different, I look at the United Kingdom focusing on its constitutional questions more than jobs, education, and the economy. Labour’s One Nation is overtly Unionist and completely Identitist, the Tories fight for “Independence” from the EU has drawn on many Irish nationalist analogies. What is “multiculturalism has failed” but a tribalists demand to rid itself of cultural partitions?
    Why is the “national” deficit, the “national” health service etc. so important?Ultimately how much of the “issues” are really nationalist and how much are internationalist?

    Britian and Ireland are a mix tribalist, nationalist, unionist, republican, “loyalist”, separatist, integrationalist, you can see various combinations of these aspects in every other European country.

    As one unionist eloquiantly put it to me “There are two nations here”

    Personally, removing identity politics from societal affairs is a constitutional aspiration far more infeasible than Northern Ireland voting to join Iceland. You might get a Yugoslavia or a Switzerland existing as a multination, but it always stays a multination in its lifetime, Flux is inevitable when dealing with individuals and flux can alter any politics in any direction.

  • FDM

    I thought of this problem last night about reconciling the past. So I tried to turn the problem on its head and said how can the future be reconciled with current political thinking.

    For Irish people there are four possible outcomes that can be foreseen, wherein the politics they continue to trip along to the ballot box to support would continue to survive.

    1. A United Ireland precipitated by events in the medium-long term future, be they what they may.

    2. Northern Ireland becomes controlled by small “n” Irish nationalism. The place goes through substantial “greening” processes, to a point where it is only nominally within the UK. “Give us the money lads and do one” approach to Westminster.

    3. Wider independence/self-determination forces creates a federal structure to the British Isles, or at least the NI, Wales, Scotland, England quartet. This would however lead to a situation very like that of point 2. A very much Irish led and “greened” agenda.

    4. The status quo.

    On the unionist side what are the possible outcomes that would give relevance for their current politics to continue to survive?

    A. The status quo.

    Unionism can only survive if the Union pervades in its current form AND if Irish nationalists do not take control in Northern politics.

    In short as you can see Unionism has no plan B. To be very clear here I am not talking about people who wish to maintain the “financial” link above, those who are pro financial union. Two of those options (2&3) can take place in what will be a nationalist led political agenda. I am talking about what mainstream Unionism represents today, which is flegs, OO, religious fundamentalism, marching, sectarianism, royals, armed forces etc… Those particular ideologies that dominate mainstream political Unionism have no plan B.

    Yet events, elections and census figures tell us that were are entering a post-status-quo environment, wherein all bets are off. Even faced with these facts mainstream Unionism sticks to plan A, that the irrefutable facts tell us cannot survive.

    Unionism as it is today is dying. If they continue on the plan A trajectory they continue a journey to irrelevancy and prematurely perhaps precipitate any of options 1, 2 or 3 above.

    I believe through their complete navel-gazing focus upon the past they have ensured that they have no future. Hence the OP is irrelevant. Unionism is determined to back itself into a corner and shout “No surrender”. The Irish will simply leave them there and get on with running the place. This will include settling on a version of the past that they don’t care Unionists are unhappy with. Unionists have decided that there has to be a victor. It just won’t be them and as we know the victors write the history.

  • FuturePhysicist

    One key aspect of the flags dispute is that all who signed up to the Belfast Agreement accepted implicitly that Northern Ireland will remain within the United Kingdom for as long as there is no majority for a united Ireland: that is to say, for as far into the future as it is possible to see.

    Sinn Féin leaders insist that this isn’t so, that the agreement opens the way towards a united Ireland. A majority of their membership seems to have swallowed this whole. But it is not an analysis that would survive a reading of the text.

    The logic of the agreement’s constitutional provisions is that the union flag should fly over buildings and installations representing the UK on as many days of the year as the flag-folk desire – over the Northern Ireland Office, for example. But the agreement guarantees equality between “the two communities”. So the union flag would not as of right flutter above buildings housing elements of the devolved administration: the Stormont Assembly building comes to mind, or Belfast City Hall.

    I think as a nationalist it is reasonable to concede for the time being the Union flag should certainly fly over the UK government’s direct influence such as the Northern Irish office, Royal residences, military barracks, and reserved power institutions but only if that is the will of both the majority here and of the UK government to accept that will. It is republican imperative to respect the self determination of every man and woman and denying that right to what is called the 18% of the population of the isle is no more different than what happened under the failed gerrymandering big house unionism in the North and the the failed gerrymandering big house republicanism in the South.

    There is plenty of space between those extremes.

  • denogla

    An honest dialogue is one thing, but trying to ‘reconcile’ competing visions of the past ignores the reality that competing visions of the past are a reality in almost all national societies today, and leads to odd exercises such as those that go on in the Republic of Ireland now, where those forces that existed to deny the achievement of Irish sovereignty are supposed to be honoured alongside those that fought for the achievement of that sovereignty.

  • WindsorRocker

    It’s been a point of republicans to bring up Bloody Sunday etc to try and equate the state with those who deliberately instigated violence.

    It’s an overly simplistic argument that Jonny Bell used on The View where he mentioned the statistics of who killed how many and how many Catholics were killed by various groups.

    To simply focus on the kill count is to assume that the motivations of all groups were the same and that it was their intensity that differed.

    The kill count is only a reflection of the root cause which is that whilst groups like PIRA, UVF, UDA/UFF, INLA had as their primary motivation the initiation of violence at a centrally coordinated level, those who served in the uniform of the various state agencies were not motivated by that same intention.

    Any violence engaged in by state agencies was based in the overarching goal of the preservation of life except in certain instances where individual members broke the law or where mistakes were made.

    It is worth noting that during the troubles when one considered the strength of the RUC, UDR, Army at any one time in Northern Ireland potentially numbering close to 20,000 that Republicans can only selectively quote particular incidents to argue that the state were terrorists just as much as the paramilitary groups.

    Those incidents were exceptions that proved the rule of a state that operated within the parameters of the rule of law. No such opposite exceptions exist in regard to the conduct of the paramilitaries.

  • Morpheus

    “Any violence engaged in by state agencies was based in the overarching goal of the preservation of life except in certain instances where individual members broke the law or where mistakes were made.”

    Preservation of life? Loyalists openly admit that they got 85% of their intelligence from the State agencies – they got so many boxes of intelligence they didn’t know where to put it. The State, through paramilitaries, selected which NI citizens lived and died, the same citizens which pay the state to protect them.

    I think you need to delve into the whole murky world of state collusion and then comment on whether or not their goal was to preserve life or not. I particularly recommend ‘License to Murder’ documentary which is available on youtube, the Saville Report, the DeSilva report, the sworn affadavit of ex-RUC John Weir available here, innocent civilians wrongfully killed by plastic bullets and so on.

    I don’t think anyone suggests that every single member of the organisations you mentioned were involved – I am sure many thousands joined to make a positive difference – but more than enough participated to destroy the reputations of these state agencies.

  • Morpheus

    “Those incidents were exceptions that proved the rule of a state that operated within the parameters of the rule of law.”

    Sorry, I missed this gem first time around.

    If anything the state has proven time and time again the extraordinary lengths they will go to in order to save itself – Bloody Sunday and Hillsborough to name but 2 examples. We have to endure whitewash after whitewash and a refusal for the most part to even investigate itself never mind prosecute those who were involved. Bloody Sunday is a perfect example – unlawful and unjustified killings of innocent civilians, £200m inquiry etc and still no prosecutions!

  • FDM[11.15] ‘as you can see, Unionism has no plan B’
    And they don’t get called out by BBC or UTV on their pretence of, [as I mentioned on earlier post], simply wanting the Union link continued and nothing more, they still hanker after the full trapping of absolute Protestant control as pre-1968.

  • WindsorRocker

    Morpheus,

    Again you use isolated examples and attribute great credibility towards individuals like John Weir who were imprisoned by his former colleagues after he broke the law, and also paramilitaries.

    You then assert that these isolated examples somehow outweigh all of the good work done by those organisations over 30 odd years.

    I did refer to mistakes and those who broke the law. In some cases there is an overlap between those two as in the case of Bloody Sunday.

    The position of intelligence gathering and prioritisation did sometimes mean that decisions had to be made who died and who lived when deciding if informers within organisations (who would be killing someone regardless) were worth the protection for the greater good of more lives saved down the line. Those kind of decisions resulted in the murders of policemen by republicans as well as the murder of Catholics by loyalist paramilitaries.

    The main point I made, which you conveniently miss is that the paramilitaries of whatever hue deliberately set out to create violence and take life but that the State as a corporate entity did not have that goal/mission despite the mistakes it made or the few individuals who let their colleagues down.

  • Morpheus

    I did not refer to isolated examples – by highlighting that the loyalist paramilitaries regularly provide so much intelligence they didn’t know what to do with it all – plus an ex-RUC officer saying what he did with the full knowledge of his superiors – I gave you a systemic pattern of behaviour over an extensive period.

    On this ‘overlap of mistakes and those who broke the law’ on Bloody Sunday can you clarify who made mistakes and who broke the law? Maybe then you could go on to explain why those who broke the law not only didn’t face the full force of the law but were rewarded by their organisation – some instantly rewarded for a ‘job well done’.

    I also did not assert that what I said outweighed any of the work of these organisations. I quite clearly said “I don’t think anyone suggests that every single member of the organisations you mentioned were involved – I am sure many thousands joined to make a positive difference – but more than enough participated to destroy the reputations of these state agencies.”

    There were 3 players in the last 30 years – Republicans, Loyalist and The State. Republicans deserve extra scrutiny because of what they did – hence the number of Republican cases with the HET – but The State should not be above scrutiny and as a minimum should be subject to the basic laws of the land.

    It will all come out in the wash.

  • Morpheus

    *I did not refer to isolated examples – by highlighting that the loyalist paramilitaries regularly received so much intelligence they didn’t know what to do with it all – plus an ex-RUC officer saying what he did with the full knowledge of his superiors – I gave you a systemic pattern of behaviour over an extensive period.

  • Reader

    Morpheus: Bloody Sunday is a perfect example – unlawful and unjustified killings of innocent civilians, £200m inquiry etc and still no prosecutions!
    It was clearly stated when the inquiry was set up that the evidence gathered couldn’t be used for prosecutions. This was against a background of relatives of the victims repeatedly stating that what they really wanted was the truth. You have had 15 years to absorb that point: £200m buys no prosecutions.
    However, there is no troubles amnesty and no statute of limitations for murder. You may find that SF aren’t so keen to highlight the possibility of prosecutions now for murders 40 years ago, and it would be better to pin your hopes on other organisations to push the case.

  • “Loyalists openly admit that they got 85% of their intelligence from the State agencies – they got so many boxes of intelligence they didn’t know where to put it. The State, through paramilitaries, selected which NI citizens lived and died, the same citizens which pay the state to protect them.”

    @Morpheus,

    This quote raises several questions:
    1) Was the intelligence provided by the state agencies, or by individual members of them?
    2) Did the person who provided the 85% figure sit down and add up all the tips they had and examine where they came from, or did he just pull this figure out of thin air?
    3) What was the motive behind those providing the intelligence? Maybe it was the thought that provided with acfual intelligence, the loyalists would start killing actual members of the Republican Movement (preferably from the armed section) rather than ordinary Catholics. Maybe it was that if the “war” was actually restricted to those interested in pursuing it fewer civilians would be harmed and it would be terminated more quickly.

  • Morpheus

    tmicth57: The figure comes from The DeSilva Report with particular highlights including:
    * 85% of intelligence that the UDA used to target people for murder originated from army and police sources
    * 270 separate instances of security force leaks to the UDA between January 1987 and September 1989
    * Agents working for MI5, RUC Special Branch and Military Intelligence were participating in criminality, presumably including murder.

    For extra clarification you can can watch the documentary I recommended and hear it from the actual recipients of the intelligence.

    As for the motive you will need to ask those who took it upon themselves to serve as judge, jury and executioner.

  • paulG

    tmitch57,

    “1)Was the intelligence provided by the state agencies, or by individual members of them?”

    If the state didn’t act to stem this deluge of information then those supplying it could rightly assume they had it’s approval.

    2) Did the person who provided the 85% figure sit down and add up all the tips they had and examine where they came from, or did he just pull this figure out of thin air?

    It’s a British report. Can’t even stomach facts from your own side?

    3) What was the motive behind those providing the intelligence? Maybe it was the thought that provided with acfual intelligence, the loyalists would start killing actual members of the Republican Movement (preferably from the armed section) rather than ordinary Catholics. Maybe it was that if the “war” was actually restricted to those interested in pursuing it fewer civilians would be harmed and it would be terminated more quickly.

    Sounds a lot like you support the use of State Sponsored Terrorism. Please confirm, deny or clarify.

  • Barnshee

    The usual crock

    For any allegations to be accepted we need to know

    WHO? leaked WHAT WHEN, WHERE HOW ? add in WHY if you like

    Perpetrators caught red handed -? I think not

    Politicians/senior Forces personnel ,bureaucrats in minuted meetings “signing off” leaks to murder gangs– LOL how naive can you get

    The mud won’t stick-the wall is too high and the surface too slippery

  • Morpheus

    So those who gave the intelligence admit it, those who received the intelligence admit it, Government reports confirm it, the Prime Minister apologized for it but of course Barnshee with his “La La La, I’m not listening” garbage knows better than everyone else.

  • Barnshee

    “Barnshee with his “La La La, I’m not listening” garbage knows better than everyone else.”

    Nope just want to see the list

    WHO? leaked WHAT WHEN, WHERE HOW ? add in WHY if you like

    Links and info gratefully received

  • Morpheus

    Watch these, they will answer all your questions in spades:
    BBC Panorama: A License to Murder EP1 Part-1
    BBC Panorama: A License to Murder EP1 Part-2
    BBC Panorama: A License to Murder EP1 Part-3

    Then read this

    Then read this

    The fact that you are one of the few who deny collusion went on says a lot about you comrade

  • Morpheus

    And this

  • Son of Strongbow

    I just give my dog 85% of the sausage I was eating. Sadly for her it was a mini cocktail sausage.

    She was unimpressed.

  • between the bridges

    SoS if the dog didn’t know what 100% was, would it have been able to work out what 85% is…

  • Morpheus

    “I just give my dog 85% of the sausage I was eating. Sadly for her it was a mini cocktail sausage. She was unimpressed.”

    Oh I get it…

  • In a nutshell , NI has 2 pasts , 2 presences and presumably 2 differin futures . The posting above which outlined the various options left out the Joint Authority option which would see both governments finance the current Stormont set up and address the divided loyalty issue at a stroke ,unionists would strongly object to this but it would encourage SF to be more friendly towards the Northern state, but maybe both sides would prefer the dog eat dog system which pertains at the moment, after all why spoil a good fight.