Moving on and forgetting the old soldiers of the Provisional IRA…

If you missed this from Shane Paul O’Doherty a week or so back, then it’s worth catching. You should try and read the whole thing. But I think this paragraph is worth highlighting…

The IRA from the period 1969-2005 is the first version of the IRA where the leadership has distanced itself from the armed struggle and its fighters, has claimed to have exited the IRA halfway through the campaign or has even entirely denied membership and command and control of the IRA – leaving the many thousands of former IRA prisoners out in the cold with convictions and prison sentences that cannot be expunged. Their difficulties in finding employment and careers have not gone away.

That covers a multitude of consequences of the IRA’s long war… As Peter Taylor has noted, “the price for everyone, young and old, has been impossibly high…”

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty