The PUL Community and the Peace Process: An Audit

The third session of the all day PSA/Fellowship of Messines workshop – Has the Protestant Working Class lost out in the Peace Process? – looked at the peace process through the eyes of two loyalist leaders and an academic. Strong views on the Social Investment Fund, how paramilitary actions gave unionists confidence in the peace process, loyalism being equated with criminality, loyalists’ sacrifices for peace, the tsunami of hate and bigotry that came out of the flag protests, and the …

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Who’s marching, where and when? And when is a parade a feeder parade?

Balmoral Review poster

In the Belfast Telegraph, Brian Rowan picks up on Jackie McDonald’s comments about the Balmoral Review on May 19. Answering a question from a delegate in the Future of Loyalism panel at the Political Studies Association conference in Belfast, the senior UDA leader had referred to loyalist groups taking part in the parade and questioned whether Short Strand residents would feel threatened as the parade passed by. Jackie McDonald has confirmed that he will be marching after all, “as a …

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Balmoral Review – fireworks, food, funfair, parades and speeches

Balmoral Review poster

Jackie McDonald’s remarks at the Political Studies Association conference about the Orange Order’s planned parade to Ormeau Park in May stirred up a lot of comments on Slugger. Answering a question after his speech, the former UDA prisoner painted a vision of “the UVF in the Somme gear” and “antique motors with the machine guns on them and all the paramilitary flags” passing by parts of Short Strand behind the Orange lodges and bands. On Easter Tuesday 1912, a large …

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Jackie McDonald questions Orange Order Covenant parade taking motorised machine guns past Short Strand

Political Studies Association

The Future of Loyalism session at the Political Studies Association conference started with two academics – Jim McAuley and Graham Spencer – introducing the Political Studies Association delegates to loyalism, loyalist themes and transformation efforts so far. Rev Chris Hudson – who acted as a conduit between the Irish Government and the UVF – spoke about his journey. [Click on their names to hear their 10 minute introductions.] Finally, Jackie McDonald – introduced as a former UDA prisoner – spoke …

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‘Good’ UDA visits US

With the reported assistance of the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs, Jackie McDonald and three other representatives of the ‘good’ UDA secured the necessary visas and are now in the US.  Travelling on their British passports, natch.  Now-Senator Martin McAleese continues to assist as they meet some familar names.  The Irish Times’ Lara Marlowe reports The trip is not a fundraising mission. Because of their paramilitary pasts, the state department had to provide waivers for them to receive US visas. Mr McDonald, who …

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Quote of the Day

From associate of Irish President Mary McAleese, and de facto leader of the UDA inner council, Jackie McDonald.  He was being interviewed on Talkback today following the wreath laying ceremony at the Irish War Memorial at Islandbridge – where UTV’s Ken Reid notes McDonald was introduced to Queen Elizabeth II walked past McDonald.  [Approx 1 hour 15 mins in] “I’m no more a member of the UDA than Gerry Adams was a member of the IRA.” [Jackie McDonald] Indeed… Pete Baker

‘look we tried it and it did not work and it’s not going work this time either’

The Guardian report of comments by the de facto leader of the ‘good’ UDA, Jackie McDonald, contains a significant line.  From the report The UDA leader also expressed some sympathy for mainstream republicans in Sinn Féin in terms of facing up to the dissident threat. He pledged that the UDA would continue to work with Sinn Féin on sectarian flashpoints to defuse communal tensions in the 2011 loyalist marching season. “I know that it’s a Catch 22 for republicans. It’s hard …

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A tale of two cameras

After Sunday’s Independent Hunger Strike Commemoration a video appeared online showing the tail end of the march chanting ‘IRA’ (and for some bizarre reason a lenghty section recording photographers). There was quite a bit in advance of that person deciding to hit record: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WqX3Qa_pcoI&feature=player_embedded Blank