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Should the IRA be allowed in Government?

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  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    It seems you have missed it. Do a bit of research. The SAS has conducted operations into the Republic as well as Northern Ireland with targets for assassination. Of course, your government isn't publicising that too much. Especially since the operations into the Republic of Ireland would be considered acts of war.

    There are Arabs that live, work and even vote in Israel. The situations aren't so different, are they? The difference is that the Israelis took the land as they countered attacks made against them, and that were a real threat to the existence of Israel. Can you give the same justification to the taking of the six counties? Or was it just greed?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Sean_K:
    It seems you have missed it. Do a bit of research. The SAS has conducted operations into the Republic as well as Northern Ireland with targets for assassination. Of course, your government isn't publicising that too much. Especially since the operations into the Republic of Ireland would be considered acts of war.

    There are Arabs that live, work and even vote in Israel. The situations aren't so different, are they? The difference is that the Israelis took the land as they countered attacks made against them, and that were a real threat to the existence of Israel. Can you give the same justification to the taking of the six counties? Or was it just greed?

    Or a four letter word - V.O.T.E.

    Yes the English invaded Ireland in the 12th Century (recently you'll note), Yes they encouraged the prods to move in. Yes, they will act in defence of their countrymen against terrorism. They will defend ALL the citizens of NI against terrorism - in 1969 the army was sent in to defend the CATHOLICS, not the prods.

    Do the Israelis ever defend the Palestinians?

    As for the incursions - as an act of war what exactly did the Republic do about it? Or did they support the action even though they may not "publicise" it?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Man Of Kent:
    Reprisals? Obviously I have missed something. When have the SAS killed a member of the IRA in cold blood, actually gone looking for that person with the sole intention to kill them - an assassination, you might say?


    Actually the SAS did carry out assassinations on the IRA. Ever read the Nemisis File by an ex SAS member who was part of a unit tasked with eliminating known terrorists.

    I don't have a problem with that though. The SAS killed terroists to prevent the further loss of innocent lives due to the terrorists bombs. It's quite simple, if the IRA didn't kill people and were entirely a peacful political movement then they wouldn't have too face our soldiers.

    I for one believe that the IRA's arguments are worthwhile but while they continue bombing and killing they will get no respect from me.

    I think a lot of the Americans here don't fully understand or refuse to understand the true situation of NI.



    [This message has been edited by Skive'n'Dive (edited 20-08-2001).]
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Actually folks in the US have a pretty good understanding of what is going on in NI...jackbooted thuggers is noting new to US...we do it ourselves sometimes to ourselves.

    NI has become a distraction for the english from their problems at home, much like Viet Nam was for US...when the 'troubles' in NI are over everyone will become introspective and that is when you best watch out because ivery government lie will become known.

    Diesel

    88888888
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Diesel:
    Mac, all armed men are 'free men' and it will alwayse be so.

    Or, to translate: Might Makes Right.

    Think about it. Freedom is good. To be free, you must be able to enact your will. To enact your will, you must be able to overpower those opposed to it. The man most heavily armed is the man who can impose his will on everyone else. Therefore he is the most free. Therefore he is the most good.

    Once again: Free to what? Free from what?

    The IRA, free men? Come on! They may be able to kill people they don't like, but they're not exactly free to go down to the local disco and enjoy a nice night on the town, are they (what with RUC and Army bods at most nightclub doors)?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Mac, it is a state of mind and you keep missing it...an armed society is a polite society...see; Switzerland.

    There is an old concept that 'one no vote rules' because the disident must be addressed wheras if they just voted yes it would garner any interest in them, or their cause, at all.

    Honestly, I don't know why we bother...the truth is that we get cheaper goods and other bargans from socialist and communist countries that are made up of disarmed sheeple who are convinced of their own freedom and can no longer hear or feel their chains.

    Ta!

    Diesel

    88888888
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Diesel:
    Mac, it is a state of mind and you keep missing it...an armed society is a polite society.

    Really? Public armament and courtesy are equivalent? Well, I can see why everyone would have to be somewhat sycophantic to those that out-gunned them, if that's what you mean. <IMG alt="image" SRC="http://www.thesite.org/ubb/smile.gif"&gt;

    Wouldn't you say it's an even MORE polite society in which no-one needs to be armed 'cause everything gets settled by negotiation and/or voting? (Not saying the UK is that society, mind.)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Mac, I've said it before...negotation is surrender...nothing more, nothing less! Duty is action, fight or die! Pretty much says it all.

    Here's more from NI...I'll try to figure out how to shorten it up a bit...I include it mostly because of the 'yanks' that read and post here and don't have access.

    IRISH NEWS ROUND-UP
    http://irlnet.com/rmlist/

    Friday-Monday, 17-20 August, 2001


    1. SF, SDLP CLASH OVER POLICE REFORM
    2. Tapes back claim RUC knew about Omagh bomb
    3. Loyalists attempt to kill community worker
    4. West Belfast wall rises again
    5. Nuclear failures rewarded
    6. McGuinness meets Native American leader
    7. Intel alarm bells
    8. Feature: Visit to a Turkish Death House
    9. Analysis: An Orange Card too far
    10. Analysis: Bogota blagging




    >>>>>> SF, SDLP CLASH OVER POLICE REFORM



    Sinn Fein has said it will
    continue to oppose the revised policing reforms despite their
    endorsement today by the rival nationalist SDLP.

    Speaking at a press conference this afternoon, SDLP leader Mr
    Hume said: "We will respond positively to an invitation to join
    the Policing Board and we will be encouraging people from all
    sections of the community to join the new police service."

    The existing RUC is overwhelmingly Protestant and unionist in
    nature. It remains irreperably damaged in the eyes of
    nationalists by sectarianism and a history of collusion with
    loyalist paramilitaries.

    The future of the notorious Special Branch and the failure to
    address the RUC's human rights abuses are among the outstanding
    problems for nationalists. The latest implementation plan is a
    diluted version of the plan outlined by the Patten Commission,
    the body set up under the Good Friday Agreement to develop a
    cross-community policing service.

    The British government welcomed the SDLP's backing for the
    proposed reforms, while the Ulster Unionist Party said the move
    was "truly historic".

    The SDLP's agreement to join the Policing Board, following a
    statement of support by the Catholic Church, has increased
    speculation over a possible plan to marginalise Sinn Fein for
    political purposes.

    UUP spokesman Michael McGimpsey summed up the unionist agenda
    when he said: "This is a major concession by the SDLP. It should
    be now clear to everyone that Sinn Fein is isolated on policing,
    isolated on decommissioning and isolated on Colombia. Sinn Fein
    is out of touch."

    But the more hardline Democratic Unionist Party ridiculed the
    SDLP's decision, calling it a "poodle of the Roman Catholic
    Church".

    "There's a question to be answered," said Sinn Fein chairman
    Mitchel McLaughlin today. "Is this Patten? if it's not Patten why
    have they settled for it?" he asked.

    He called for a level playing field in the debate over policing,
    warning against a campaign of intimidation being mounted by those
    in favour of the package.

    He said: "If we are going to see the schools being used and the
    campuses used as a recruitment platform for this new police
    service then school children have the right to opt out of that,
    their parents have the right to opt out of that without any form
    of intimidation or pressure, or coercion being applied upon
    them."

    Last week, Sinn Fein acknowledged that intensive negotiations
    with the British government had succeeded in bringing about some
    positive changes to the extreme position set by former British
    Secretary of State Peter Mandelson -- in particular, the British
    government's agreement to amend the Mandeslon legislation.

    But after an exhaustive line by line analysis of the revised
    Implementation plan, the party said that it does not go far
    enough.

    Today, Mr McLaughlin insisted that nationalists would not accept
    "half a loaf". The main fault lines for nationalists include:

    * Restrictions on the power of the Policing Boards to conduct
    inquiries;

    * Limits to the powers of the policing boards and overriding
    powers for the British Secretary of State and Chief Constable
    which are in direct contradiction to the Patten report;

    * The Chief Constable retains the power to interfere or block
    investigations;

    * The plan fails to address the limited powers of the policing
    boards and the restrictive process of appointments;

    * The plan continues to restrict the legal powers of
    the Ombudsman to operate in a full, impartial and independent
    manner as proposed by Patten;

    * The plan ensures that the Special Branch remains an
    unaccountable force within a force, contrary to Patten's
    recommendations;

    * Despite Patten's stress on the need for a human rights ethos
    within the new policing service, serving RUC members will not
    have to take a human rights oath;

    * The issue of Plastic Bullets has not been properly
    addressed;

    * Amending legislation will not be available for at least one
    year.

    Sinn Fein will continue to argue that the Implementation Plan on
    Policing does not bridge the gap between Mandelson legislation
    and the Patten Report.

    "In that context and at this time Sinn Fein will not be making
    appointments to the policing board," McLaughlin said. "Sinn Fein
    will continue in our efforts to secure a policing service
    acceptable to all sections of the community.

    "The onus is now clearly on the British government to explain how
    it intends to win nationalist and republican confidence and
    deliver the new beginning to policing as promised in the Good
    Friday Agreement."

    Referring to renewed efforts to marginalise Sinn Fein, McLaughlin
    added: "We have had elections recently and we will have elections
    in the future. We'll see who the nationalists and the republican
    community are taking leadership from.

    "It's not the first time a coalition of interests has emerged
    against Sinn Fein. Well we didn't go away, we're still here and
    swe're stronger now than we were in the past."




    >>>>>> Tapes back claim RUC knew about Omagh bomb


    Tapes of conversations between a British spy and his RUC Special
    Branch handler have backed claims that the RUC police had advance
    warning about the Omagh bomb attack three years ago.

    The so-called "Real IRA", a dissident breakaway Republican group,
    claimed responsibility for the attack in which twenty-nine people
    died. But evidence originally obtained by the Irish Sunday
    People newspaper indicates that the RUC Special Branch had 48
    hours advance warning of the attack and the alleged bomb-maker's
    identity.

    The claims, which first surfaced three weeks ago but only became
    public last week, have led to an investigation by the Police
    Ombudsman's office.

    Two tapes between an agent using the name 'Kevin Fulton' and his
    handler confirm the RUC Special Branch man was informed of the
    attack. According to a transcript of the first tape, which has
    been passed to the Ombudsman's office, Fulton can be heard asking
    his handler whether he recalled the warning he had passed on more
    than 48 hours before the Omagh bomb exploded.

    In the conversation, described as 'cagey' and said to have taken
    place earlier this year, the handler replies: "I vaguely
    remember, but I'd have to check my notes... I remember
    something... I do remember bits and pieces."

    According to Fulton, he met the man alleged to have constructed
    the bomb on the Thursday before the attack. This man has never
    been questioned by the RUC, adding to accusations by relatives of
    those killed in the Omagh bomb that the RUC is engaged in a
    cover-up.

    Laurence Rushe, whose wife was killed in the bomb, has also
    challenged RUC claims that the warning given by the 'Real IRA'
    before the explosion were imprecise and that this led to many
    people being directed towards the bomb and not away from it. He
    says that during his late wife's inquest, evidence was given by
    an RUC officer that the warning had contained the exact position
    of the bomb.





    >>>>>> Loyalists attempt to kill community worker



    Sinn Fein councillor Danny Lavery is accusing the UDA of being
    behind an attempt to kill a community worker in the Whitewell
    area of North Belfast last week.

    According to Lavery, the RUC arrived at the door of the community
    worker and informed him that a loyalist group had said they threw
    a pipe bomb at him in an attempt to kill him. The man knew
    nothing about any such attack, but some time later a pipe bomb
    was found in the garden of a house that he had visited.

    "The man is clearly shocked at this attack. He is a respected
    community worker and this attack was an attempt to kill him,"
    said Lavery, who blamed the UDA.

    Meanwhile, the home of a Catholic family in Ingledale Gardens in
    the Upper Crumlin Road was targeted by loyalist bombers. A pipe
    bomb exploded in their garden of the house at 11.45pm on Tuesday
    14 August.

    No one was injured and the house suffered some damage in an
    attack that is being blamed on the UDA.

    These latest attacks came just hours before Sinn Fein's Alex
    Maskey released a report documenting some 200 attacks on
    Catholics and nationalists by loyalists paramilitaries this year.

    Said Maskey: "The report lists almost 200 attacks and will be
    distributed to TDs, MPs, journalists, Senators and Congress
    members in the US, and other political parties as a way of
    highlighting the extent of the campaign of Catholics across the
    North."





    >>>>>> West Belfast wall rises again


    On the thirty-second anniversary of the day when loyalists razed
    Bombay Street to the ground, workmen yesterday began work on yet
    another extension to the so-called 'peaceline'.

    When the work is completed the wall will stand at over 30-feet.
    The extension to the wall was recently given the go-ahead by
    Security Minister Jane Kennedy after a prolonged protest campaign
    by local people and politicians.

    And Bombay Street resident Owen Davy said it was a great relief
    for local people that the wall has finally been extended. "It is
    ironic that we are still building more and more barricades 32
    years to the day that our homes were burned to the ground but we
    have been left with no option. For the past few months we have
    been under sustained attack day and night from the loyalists and
    it is only by a miracle that no one has been killed.

    "I only hope that this peaceline will offer more protection for
    the people of my street so that we can sleep in our beds at
    night. "My only reservation is that it does not extend far
    enough."

    Sinn Fein councillor for the Lower Falls Fra McCann who
    campaigned for the peaceline to be raised has welcomed the
    extension. "Sinn Fein had written a letter to Adam Ingram when he
    was security minister asking for the peaceline to be raised and
    we are pleased that it has finally been given the go ahead."

    PAINT, PIPE BOMBS

    Meanwhile, sectarian attacks have continued in west and north
    Belfast, with the discovery of two suspected pipe bombs.

    The first device was found this morning in the Tullymore Gardens
    area of Andersontown, west Belfast, while the second was found in
    Hannahstown Gardens in north Belfast.

    In a separate incident in north Belfast this morning, a paint
    bomb has been thrown at a house. The house in Hesketh Park in
    Ardoyne had a window broken and a paint bomb thrown into the
    living room.




    >>>>>> Nuclear failures rewarded


    British Nuclear Fuels (BNFL) has made losses for the past two
    years. In December 1999, it was found to have falsified safety
    data in one of its fuel reprocessing plants and in the last year
    had 27 breaches of its environmental licenses. Add in the litany
    of accidents, including last month's days of misinformation over
    lost fuel rods, and you have a company with serious problems.

    You have a company where management is clearly not doing its job
    properly. Well, maybe not, because despite an admission from BNFL
    chairperson Hugh Collum that "there are areas where performance
    was clearly unacceptable", the board at BNFL have paid some its
    members substantial bonuses.

    BNFL's annual report, published last week, showed that chief
    executive Norman Askew, earned a bonus of #75,250 on top of his
    #350,000 basic salary. Finance director John Edwards won a bonus
    of #44,750 to add to his #191,250 annual salary. Two other
    directors also got bonuses of #38,000 apiece.

    BNFL's annual report also contains a range of interesting
    statements and interpretations of the company's dire financial
    performance. Despite losses across the board, including their
    flagship Thorp reprocessing plant at Sellafield, BNFL are forging
    ahead with the sad news for Irish citizens that the notorious
    Sellafield site is "key to the future" for the company.

    The annual report also claims that in Britain, "radioactive
    discharges to the environment from our operating sites remained
    within authorised limits". This sounds ok until you read on and
    find that BNFL then admits, "we did not comply with some of the
    technical conditions of our environmental licenses", and that
    their "performance in this area has not improved since last
    year".

    This 'non-compliance' happened on 27 occasions during 2000, once
    a fortnight on average. Seven of the 27 'events' involved
    discharges above the legal limit. Many of these discharges are
    into what BNFL calls the marine environment, the sea to you and
    me. Incredibly, it will not be until 2020 that BNFL meets
    international requirements for stemming radioactive leaks into
    the sea.

    Sinn Fein's Louth representative and Dundalk councillor, Arthur
    Morgan, criticised the bonuses paid to board members. Morgan
    said, "it is incredible to believe that bonuses could be paid to
    the management of not just a loss making company, but one that
    has breached environmental guidelines so many times in one year.
    This is a slap in the face for the people of Louth, who live in
    daily fear of what could go wrong at BNFL's plants on Britain's
    west coast".




    >>>>>> McGuinness meets Native American leader


    While visiting Derry recently, Joe Thunderhawk met with Minister
    of Education Martin McGuinness. Thunderhawk is an elder with the
    Lakota Sioux in North-western Alberta in Canada.

    Accompanied by Seamus Callan (originally from Monaghan),
    Thunderhawk had just arrived after delivering a protest at the UN
    in Geneva and after a meeting with the Dutch royal family in
    Holland. He is protesting at the destruction of his land and the
    discrimination against his people by the oil company Royal Dutch
    Shell.

    The population of Native Americans has plummeted in Canada, in
    particular due to what Thunderhawk terms a "slow genocide" by the
    Canadian government and multinationals.

    All the land and resources that these multinationals are creating
    billions from, as well as destroying, legally belongs to the
    Sioux, he says. However, the International treaty that the
    Canadian government has with the Sioux is broken continuously
    with discrimination, poverty and suicide rife among their nation.
    Thunderhawk fears that the future of his people is very bleak
    unless the international community puts pressure on the Canadian
    government and on Shell to halt the destruction of their lands
    and restore their human rights.

    Thunderhawks' visit to Ireland was hosted by Sinn Fein and his
    meeting with Martin McGuinness, who has a long-standing interest
    in the plight of Native Americans, was very constructive. After
    the meeting, McGuinness said: "We are delighted that Thunderhawk
    is in Derry today and we have pledged to do all in our power to
    highlight this disgraceful situation and use our influence to
    assist his campaign."

    After a tour of the city, Thunderhawk and Seamus Callan travelled
    to Belfast to meet with Gerry Adams.





    >>>>>> Intel alarm bells


    Following the latest closure and lay-offs in the tech sector in
    Ireland, Robbie MacGabhann looks at Intel's Irish operations, the
    Celtic Tiger's backbone.


    Focusing on rationalistion plans, redundancy programmes and
    falling earnings in the information, communications and
    technology industries is one way of analysing the prospects for
    Ireland's domestic technology sector. In past few months news of
    job cuts at Xerox, Gateway and Intel among others has signaled
    that all is not well.

    It is hard not to believe that the coalition government and the
    IDA are not approaching this sector with some trepidation and
    maybe worry after years of their bullish hype about our little
    E-ireland, silicon island, Internet hub for the galaxy etc , etc.

    Politicians can always be found at the opening of IDA factories
    or the announcement of the announcement of the opening, of the
    first sod being turned, of the contracts being agreed. They are
    rarely found at the funerals and wakes when these companies go
    belly up.

    The coalition ministers were also silent this week as a range of
    important stories unraveled with potentially significant
    implications for the Irish economy and particularly the s o
    important technology sectors. News of new Intel expansion plans,
    a price war in the semi-conductor and PC markets and a collapse
    in earnings for Cisco Systems has all gone uncommented on by the
    leaders of the coalition government. What is it though, about
    these three stories that that merits those in power sitting up
    and taking notice?

    Perhaps the most obvious story was the announcement by Intel that
    production of the new Pentium 4 chip, a new high performance
    microprocessor for desktop computers, will be based in Malaysia.
    Intel also plans to open a new network design centre in Malaysia
    and has earmarked $11.5 billion for capital expenditure in new
    products.

    How this affects Intel's Irish operations, their largest outside
    of the USA, has not been dealt with. The company delayed work on
    their new $2 billion facility in Ireland earlier this year, but
    according to the IDA, are still on target to have the facility in
    production by the second quarter of 2003.

    We asked the IDA had they been chasing the Pentium 4
    business and they refused to confirm that they were or were not
    lobbying Intel for this business. The IDA's line on all projects
    is that they steadfastly refuse to talk about any discussion they
    have with prospective inward investors until a deal is agreed.
    This means that the public gets very little detail about the
    projects that never come to pass.

    In terms of the Pentium 4 project, there are two unanswered
    questions: One, if the IDA didn't go after this project why was
    this the case? Two, if they did, why did they fail? It doesn't
    take long to figure out that low costs and lower wages might be
    the expected answer. If this is a sign of things to come the next
    question is what plans do the Dublin government have to ensure a
    long term future for the technology sector on the island?

    One thing that cannot be changed is an emerging price war in
    the semiconductor and PC markets. Low or stagnant sales growth is
    causing Dell, Compaq, Gateway, Hewlett Packard etc to slash
    prices to shift stock. For the chip makers, there has been a
    knock on effect and they to are beginning to lower prices in
    order to maintain their sales.

    Intel's strategy seems to be to dump old stock and promote new
    products such as the Pentium 4 chip, which if it is not made in
    Ireland is of little use to the Irish economy.

    More bad news came with the announcement this week of an 86% fall
    in profits at Cisco Systems. Cisco are a huge US-based company
    whose products are effectively building the telecommunications
    network we like to call the Internet. If Cisco sales are falling,
    that means that the Internet structures and network are not gro
    wing also. The knock on effect of this through the software
    industry could be huge.

    All of this points to the need for the Department of Enterprise,
    Trade and Employment in the 26 Counties and its sister Department
    of Enterprise, Trade and Investment in th e Six Counties to forge
    a common approach to developing indigenous technology businesses,
    whether they employ 6 people or 600.

    This month, the governments of both states are effectively on
    holidays. It remains to be seen whether on their return to work
    they will face up to the other side of hyping technology
    industries. Ireland can still have an E-island, but we just might
    have to build it ourselves.




    >>>>>> Feature: Visit to a Turkish Death House

    ELLA O'DWYER describes her recent visit to one of the Turkish
    Death Houses



    Like most republicans, a day comes when we just need to rest. The
    travel agent offered Tunisia or Turkey and I told the sales rep
    that I would under no circumstances go to a country like Turkey,
    where people were on hunger strike in defiance of a brutal regime
    and I had been in Tunisia before. Then I walked up the road and
    by the time I'd reached the GPO I'd decided to go to Turkey.
    Twenty years ago, at the end of the first hunger strike in 1980,
    I left Ireland to pursue a dream of visiting Palestine, India and
    the eastern regions of the world. By the time I reached Crete,
    the second hunger strike was in flow and I just turned round and
    came back. Now, 20 years on, I resumed something of my journey. I
    chose Turkey.

    Turkey's stunningly beautiful mountains are food for the soul.
    The other face is a president whose hated portrait must be shown
    in all places, and the symbol of terrible oppression, of the 31
    now dead on the death fast.

    I had the address of a death fast house in Izmir, the second
    largest city of Turkey. A taxi took me through this huge town, to
    the poorest of little streets. At last we found the door of the
    death house, where Turkish hunger strikers had lived their last
    days and died amongst their people, amongst the children.

    I walked into the house. A woman came to me, welcomed me, offered
    me hospitality with so much warmth. "Take off your shoes, tea,
    coffee." Through a half-hour conversation in French, Turkish and
    English, I let them know why I had arrived at their house. There
    were hugs all round, with neighbours and children filling the
    room - delighted to feel solidarity from far off Ireland. There
    was a burst of happiness in a house that carried terrible pain.
    The woman of the house had been in jail with Sevgi Erdogan, the
    hunger striker whose picture covered the front page of An
    Phoblacht some weeks ago.

    They showed me the photos of the people who had died, of the
    people who were dying on the death fast, who had since been moved
    to Istanbul. The children had lived right in the middle of all
    this pain, and shifted from joy to anger with the alternating
    lift of a friendly face and the terrible recollection of death
    and injustice. The family showed me the room where their people
    had died. A newborn baby now sleeps there.

    An ex-prisoner played a couple of tunes on a flute for his
    comrades in jail. As with political prisoners everywhere, he
    developed his gift in jail, where he also learnt of Bobby Sands,
    Gerry Adams, Sinn Fein and ERA (The IRA). "We watch what
    republicans do," he said, "It is good to have love between our
    peoples."

    Another woman of the house had lost two brothers in law who had
    been killed and there was hectic traffic in pictures, posters and
    accounts of tyrannous oppression. What I remember most were the
    smiles on these faces; happy to know they had friends far away
    and undaunted by the oppression and pain.

    A young student asked me "Are you a Marxist-Leninist party?" We
    want a socialist republic, I replied. A smile came on his face.
    Had he been under the attention much of the police? I asked.
    "Yes. I was arrested; they asked me many questions." Did they
    torture you? "They punched me," he said with a bigger smile "and
    asked me many questions, but I didn't answer."

    He was young, intelligent, sad/happy and rearing for action. I
    quoted the wise words of an Irish republican who says often:
    'Revolutionaries have to learn to wait' and 'Slowly, slowly catch
    the monkey'. "Yes, we too have a saying like that," he said and
    he smiled all the more. "Yesterday," he said, "Castro addressed a
    million people, to mark the birthday of the revolution." At that
    moment I felt proud, proud to be an Irish republican.

    "The Irish people, they don't seem to care," he said. I told him
    that republicans care and that Gerry Adams had attended a
    demonstration last week and that another was organised for the
    coming Saturday in Dublin. I told him of the involvement of our
    ex-prisoners and of the campaign to boycott the Turkish tourism
    industry. "It is a good policy," he said.

    I had a lot of conversations that week and more than anything the
    smiles struck most, smiles often spliced by woeful recollections
    and involuntary anger at the word's apathy regarding their
    plight. In fact I think I came away with something of that
    aspect; not knowing whether to laugh or cry. But the smile
    remains the winning factor and it was a joy to see the size of
    our family, however troubled our station at diverse stages and in
    widespread places. But if Irish republicans know anything, we
    know how to persist until we take victory. As your man says,
    "slowly, slowly catch the monkey".




    >>>>>> Analysis: An Orange Card too far



    When the former leader of the UUP, James Molyneaux, claimed that
    the IRA cessation of 1994 was the 'most destabilising' event in
    the history of the northern state, he betrayed the real attitude
    of unionism towards the peace process.

    The IRA's cessation exposed them to a process that would begin to
    unearth the political realities of 30 years of war. State
    violence, human rights violations, sectarian discrimination and
    collusion between the British forces and loyalist death squads -
    the dynamics that held the Six-county state together, the
    dynamics that would tear it apart.

    Unionists could no longer restrict their politics to condemnation
    of and hate for republicans. Toppled from their self-built moral
    high chairs, they would have to find a new issue with which to
    obscure political reality.

    And sure enough a new excuse, 'decommissioning', was found and
    used to delay the pace of progress again and again.

    In the intervening period, the issue of IRA arms has been used,
    increasingly, to inhibit every positive move in the peace
    process.

    Unionism has used it as a precondition to developments on
    institutional change, policing, demilitarisation and the equality
    elements of this process, which should be regarded as human
    rights but are obscurely portrayed as concessions to republicans.
    The reality is that unionism see any moves towards equality as
    concessions to republicans.

    This is why, when the IRA made its unprecedented move this week,
    David Trimble immediately rejected the ensuing statement from the
    IICD and found a new stick with which to beat the peace process.

    After the IRA proposal was announced - and accepted as genuine by
    the IICD - David Trimble said that it would not be enough. He now
    insisted that unless the SDLP accepted the UUP and British
    government's stance on policing, the process would not move
    forward.

    Most republicans would have seen this as yet another desperate
    and futile attempt to again stall the peace process, and believed
    it would be viewed as such by the British government.

    Two days later, however, by suspending the institutions for more
    'talks', the British government snubbed an IRA initiative it had
    heartily welcomed just days before and made it impossible for the
    IRA to maintain its position.

    Ultimately, what the British government has achieved this week is
    to tell republicans that, when things come down to the wire, it
    will still play the Orange card.




    >>>>>> Analysis: Bogota blagging

    By Bill Delaney


    One of the biggest propoganda exercises mounted by British
    militarists in recent years looks set to come to an abrupt end
    this week with the deportation of three Irishmen from Colombia.

    A tissue of lies and libel about the three -- two of whom are
    former members of Sinn Fein -- has been promoted by almost every
    single news organisation in Britain and Ireland, and by the
    Washington Post.

    Motivated by the recent dramatic rise in Sinn Fein support, the
    larger Irish political parties and the SDLP have also supported
    the wild and spurious claims, all of which appear groundless.

    All in all, it has been a golden week for the department of
    British military intelligence known as psychological operations,
    'psy-ops', and for Sinn Fein's desperate political opponents.

    The men were taken from a scheduled internal flight from
    rebel-held southern Colombia to Bogota last week. After being
    paraded in front of video cameras by the Colombian military, who
    dramatically announced that the names on the men's passports were
    false, a slow campaign of deception began.

    Tales were told that the three were involved in drug-running and
    international "narco-terrorism". Satellite evidence, video
    evidence and physical evidence were said to prove that a "global
    terrorist campaign" was being hatched by the gang of "leading IRA
    figures".

    Unionist hardliner Peter Robinson wreaked havoc, inflaming
    unionist opinion with his advance knowledge of the lurid
    allegations. He didn't disguise the fact that he had been
    informed by British military intelligence, a case-study of
    British securocrats colluding with unionism in an attempt to
    destroy the peace process.

    Meanwhile, the baffled silence of Sinn Fein officials was taken
    as further confirmation of the men's guilt. One of the three, a
    Dublin man unknown to the Irish authorities, was even identified
    as Sinn Fein's Latin-American representative -- a position which
    the party pointed out does not even exist.

    All to no avail. Sinn Fein was certainly behind the massive plot,
    and the party's peace strategy was a sham.

    Going for broke, the British media then began reporting that the
    men had perfected, with the aid of Colombian rebels, a
    "super-bomb".

    No allegation was too absurd. An apocalyptic campaign of
    violence was about to be mounted against the general British
    population. The Irish are coming.

    And most importantly -- the American public must be informed. The
    Sinn Fein and their evil global terrorist network must be
    stopped.

    But the climb-down has now begun. Doubts have been cast on the
    "super-bomb" stories. None of the reported evidence can be found.
    No charges are to be proffered. And the media's lawyers are on
    stand-by.

    Who still believes in the free media?
    Who exactly is innocent until proven guilty?
    Who says the British have no imagination?

    Get out the shovels, boys, it's time to bury this one.

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  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Diesel:
    Mac, I've said it before...negotation is surrender...nothing more, nothing less!

    So you would, therefore, entirely support the UK forces FIGHTING to keep insurrection down and not NEGOTIATING with terrorists. Thank you. <IMG alt="image" SRC="http://www.thesite.org/ubb/smile.gif"&gt;

    There was a damn fine article in the Telegraph yesterday transplanting the whole Ulster situation to Texas.

    If it were a group of Hispanic extremists looking to "free" Texas from imperialist American rule, would you support them? Never mind the fact that most of the Texan population wants to stay in the Union. Never mind that the Hispanic Republican Army has killed over a thousand civilians and police officers over the course of its 30 year campaign of violence. Never mind that the HRA kills and/or brutalises Hispanic "sympathisers". Never mind that unrepentant HRA members are being allowed into the Texan state legislature, even to cabinet posts, without swearing loyalty to the US Constitution. Never mind that the HRA refuses to put its 100+ tonne arsenal out of commission. Never mind that splinter groups of the HRA are still bombing Washington DC.

    Well?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    No compromise is exactly that...until one side wins and dictates the terms of the peace (if any) to the other side.

    It's true, US uses Mexican 'illegals' for what ammounts to slave labor in the fields...I don't know many other people who would tolerate the conditions or hours of drudgery...not unlike the way the Irish were used by the english for so many years.

    Diesel

    88888888
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Man Of Kent:
    Or a four letter word - V.O.T.E.

    Yes the English invaded Ireland in the 12th Century (recently you'll note), Yes they encouraged the prods to move in. Yes, they will act in defence of their countrymen against terrorism. They will defend ALL the citizens of NI against terrorism - in 1969 the army was sent in to defend the CATHOLICS, not the prods.

    Do the Israelis ever defend the Palestinians?

    As for the incursions - as an act of war what exactly did the Republic do about it? Or did they support the action even though they may not "publicise" it?

    Ah, yes. Shove the rightful owners of the land out, and put in your own rabble. Then put it up for vote. Very democratic.

    As for Israelis defending Arabs, yes, they have and do. There is no such thing as a Palestinian. An invention of the English (like the "Irish" who hasn't a drop of Celt blood).

    I see, since the Republic didn't do anything except protest to the English government, that makes it alright. So, what would you have them do? Scream for the heads of the SAS murderers? And when the same murderers return to target the Irish leaders?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    If you are serious about understanding the issues of Eire, I suggest you try reading this thread from the view of the Irish. A people that the English have kicked, enslaved and abused for over 1000 years. So much for being able to end the conflict if you wanted to. You give the Palestinians more credit than you do the people that you are neighbors to. Wanking off, that is all you are doing.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Two myths

    The first myth is that the conflict in the Middle East today is about the struggle for a Palestinian state because Palestinian Arabs were displaced by the creation of Israel, and the world is now responsible to assist in the establishment of a Palestinian homeland. Regarding Palestinians as a distinct people, however, is a notion that must be reconsidered. There is no distinct Palestinian culture or language. Further, there has never been a Palestinian state governed by Palestinians in history, nor was there ever a Palestinian national movement until after the 1967 Six-Day War, when Israel seized Judea and Samaria.

    The Palestinian national movement has one primary goal: the destruction of Israel and the creation of a Palestinian state to supplant Israel, with Yasir Arafat as its leader.

    A second myth deals with the issue of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount. The myth is that Jerusalem is really an Arab city, and that the Temple Mount is the third holiest site in Islam, and a central focus of Islam. The truth is that the Palestinians expressed very limited interest in the Temple Mount before 1967. Further, Jerusalem has always been a city with a substantial Jewish population, even during the period of Ottoman rule, 1517-1917.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Sean_K:
    A people that the English have kicked, enslaved and abused for over 1000 years

    of which you've been around for probably less than 20 of them, so first hand you know FA about it and are shouting your mouth of to agree with what the common opinion around you is

    do you not think that the british would give back n.ireland to eire if everybody wanted that? it's not like we aren't used to handing back what used to be our empire

    get over it, not everyone in n.ireland shares your views, so respect their decisions more and respect why the british are there more and you may be half way to understanding


    ˆMấ§ŧế®° <IMG alt="image" SRC="http://www.contrabandent.com/pez/games/poke/005.gif"&gt; ¤ĐєvĩŁĩ§Ħ¤™
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Sean K:
    There is no such thing as a Palestinian. An invention of the English (like the "Irish" who hasn't a drop of Celt blood).

    So , what qualifies you as being Irish then? Being born there? How many generations do you have to trace back?

    There was no America until 200 odd years ago, yet now there are Americans. In fact if you believe geneticists we are all Africans - if you go back far enough. So how far do you need to be able to trace you family tree? One of my ancestors came over from Denmark in 1767 - so am I Danish really?
    Originally posted by Sean K:
    I see, since the Republic didn't do anything except protest to the English government, that makes it alright. So, what would you have them do? Scream for the heads of the SAS murderers? And when the same murderers return to target the Irish leaders?

    YOU claimed that the UK had carried out an act of war. I would expect that a nation state would try to defend itself and its citizens. Yet the Republic did nothing.

    So my question is, were these acts carried out with their knowledge perhaps? Could it be that they actually agreed with them? If no, WHY didn't they act to defend their country?
    Originally posted by Sean K:
    Further, there has never been a Palestinian state governed by Palestinians in history, nor was there ever a Palestinian national movement until after the 1967 Six-Day War, when Israel seized Judea and Samaria.

    So, when did the state of Israel come into existence? 1947 perhaps? Until this time there was NO Israel, and they fought to achieve this state.
    Originally posted by Sean K:
    The truth is that the Palestinians expressed very limited interest in the Temple Mount before 1967. Further, Jerusalem has always been a city with a substantial Jewish population, even during the period of Ottoman rule, 1517-1917.

    This may be because they had easy access at this time, and yet now....?

    And, just a minor point, it IS an Arab city, purely by geography, it is claimed as a religious city by Jews, Muslims AND Christians.

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    And Israelis are Arabs....

    So, they are just wogs to the English anyway..

    And Israel did exist as a self-ruled entity prior to 1947 (although it is very many years), or hadn't you heard of Moses or King David?

    [This message has been edited by Sean_K (edited 23-08-2001).]
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Sean_K:
    And Israelis are Arabs....

    So, they are just wogs to the English anyway..

    And Israel did exist as a self-ruled entity prior to 1947 (although it is very many years), or hadn't you heard of Moses or King David?

    [This message has been edited by Sean_K (edited 23-08-2001).]

    (1) No, the Israelis are NOT Arabs. Both the Israelis and Arabs are Semitic peoples, but that's not the same thing.

    (2) "Wog" stands for "Westernized Oriental Gentleman." The Middle East is not the Orient. And, of course, you're perfectly placed to comment on the majority opinion of the United Kingdom, aren't you? For myself, I can't recall ever thinking or or calling someone a "wog".

    (3) I think we can take it as read that when we say "Israel" we mean the modern, not Biblical, state of Israel.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Sean_K:
    And Israel did exist as a self-ruled entity prior to 1947 (although it is very many years), or hadn't you heard of Moses or King David?


    Okay, a little history lesson for us both here. My Bible studies class had a poor attendance, that is I find religion dull beyond belief and so failed to turn up <IMG alt="image" SRC="http://www.thesite.org/ubb/biggrin.gif">, but I was sure that Moses and Israel wern't directly likned so I looked it up (my life is so dull, I have nothing better to do <IMG alt="image" SRC="http://www.thesite.org/ubb/wink.gif"&gt; )

    Moses led the Hebrews from Egypt to Canaan, At this point Israel didn't exist.

    Palestine, however, did. Palestine comprises three geographic zones: a part of the Great Rift Valley, a ridge, and a coastal plain. The earliest known settlements in Palestine, e.g., Jericho, may date from c.8000 B.C. An independent Hebrew kingdom was established c.1000 B.C.

    This is where King David comes into the picture. He succeeded Saul. After c.950 B.C. this kingdom broke up into two states, Israel (your point is noted, Israel DID exist before 1947 - I was wrong) and Judah. Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, and Romans in turn conquered Palestine, which fell to the Muslim Arabs by A.D. 640. The area was the focus of the Crusades and was conquered by the Ottoman Turks in 1516. By the late 19th cent., Zionism arose with the aim of establishing a Jewish homeland in Palestine, and during World War I the British, who captured the area, appeared to support this goal. After the League of Nations approved (1922) the British mandate of Palestine, Jews immigrated there in large numbers despite Arab opposition. There was tension and violence between Jews and Arabs, and the British, unable to resolve the problem, turned (1947) the Palestine question over to the UN. And thus present day Israel came into being.

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Keep doing research

    "Further, there has never been a Palestinian state governed by Palestinians in history, nor was there ever a Palestinian national movement until after the 1967 Six-Day War, when Israel seized Judea and Samaria."

    Who governed your Palestinian state?
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    IRISH NEWS ROUND-UP
    http://irlnet.com/rmlist

    Tuesday-Thursday, August 21-23, 2001


    1. BRITISH URGED TO COME CLEAN ON UDA
    2. Dispute over 'non-negotiable' policing plan
    3. McGuinness's constituency office targeted
    4. British people want out of Ireland - poll
    5. Concern over political agenda in Colombia case
    6. New closures blight Tiger economy
    7. Mickey Devine remembered
    8. Feature: Soldiers of misfortune
    9. Analysis: Stooping to pressure on policing
    10. Events in Ireland and Britain




    >>>>>> BRITISH URGED TO COME CLEAN ON UDA


    In a week of intense loyalist violence against Catholics, and
    with warnings of a further escalation, Sinn Fein Assembly member
    Conor Murphy has said that the British Secretary of State John
    Reid should immediately come clean and declare that the cessation
    by the loyalist paramilitary UDA has ended.

    For some months, the UDA have been orchestrating an anti-Catholic
    pogrom across the Six Counties. There have been hundreds of gun
    and bomb attacks on Catholics, but John Reid has said that the
    UDA are maintaining their professed 'ceasefire', or that another
    review is underway.

    "Nationalists across the North do not need daily reviews of the
    UDA position to know the reality of the situation, said Mr Murphy.

    "In recent weeks I have met John Reid and challenged him about
    his failure to come clean on the UDA. As the pogrom appears now
    to be back in full swing it is time John Reid got off the fence
    and declared that their ceasefire was at an end."

    Last week, a loyalist gang savagely beat a 16-year-old Catholic
    girl as she walked along Clifton Street, North Belfast. Coleen
    Burns was punched and repeatedly kicked by the five man strong
    gang. The assailants, who threatened to abduct her and take her
    into the loyalist Shankill, subjected the terrified teenager to
    sectarian abuse. "I thought I was going to be killed," said
    Coleen.

    The Wednesday night attack took place just yards from the
    teenager's Carrickhill home. Coleen and two friends had been
    walking home when the gang confronted them. Two friends escaped
    but Coleen was caught and subjected to a brutal attack. "I tried
    to protect my face and head," said Coleen, "but they kicked by
    hands away."

    The gang ran away when they were disturbed by a passing RUC
    patrol but not before stealing rings and jewellery from their
    victim. The men ran towards Denmark Street in the Lower Shankill.
    Coleen was taken to hospital where she was treated for fractures
    to her face and ribs. "They knew I was a Catholic and tried to
    kill me," said Coleen, "mugging me was just a bonus."

    Earlier that day two other Catholic schoolgirls had been the
    focus of another sectarian attack by a loyalist mob from the
    Tigers Bay area of North Belfast. Mary Jo Harvey (16) and her
    13-year-old friend Ursula Lawlor had been collected a
    prescription from a local chemist around 5pm, when loyalists
    surrounded the shop.

    The 40-strong mob, armed with iron bars and cudgels, surrounded
    the shop moments after a confrontation with loyalist youths
    during which the two girls had been punched and kicked. The girls
    sought refuge in the chemist but a hostile crowd quickly
    surrounded the premises. "I thought I was going to be beaten to
    death," said Mary Jo.

    Fearing for his daughter's safety, James Harvey attempted to
    rescue the trapped girls and was badly beaten by the mob,
    sustaining a serious head injury. "All I was trying to do was to
    get to my daughter," said James. Another Catholic man had to be
    rescued from the nearby health centre during the incident.

    Sinn Fein representative Kathy Stanton accused loyalists of
    trying to stop Catholics from using the local health centre and
    chemist that services both communities. "This is not tit for
    tat," said Kathy, "this is a clearly orchestrated campaign of
    sectarian intimidation by loyalists."

    Later that night nationalists living in the nearby Duncairn
    Gardens reported gunfire coming from the loyalist Tigers Bay area
    at 11pm and again three hours later. Earlier in the week a
    Catholic schoolboy, James Doran was shot in the back with a
    pellet gun as he was walking home along the Limestone Road. The
    15-year-old, who thought he had been shot with a handgun,
    collapsed as he arrived home and had to be treated for shock.

    Meanwhile, in the Short Strand district of East Belfast,
    17-year-old Anthony Quinn was badly beaten during an abduction
    attempt by a loyalist mob. The mob had gathered at the junction
    of Albert Bridge and Mountpottinger Road before attacking
    Catholic homes in the nearby Clindeboye estate.

    In full view of the local RUC barracks, the Catholic teenager was
    badly beaten before making his escape. In hospital Anthony was
    treated for a serious head wound and admitted with concussion.
    Hours earlier another Short Strand teenager 17-year-old Joseph
    Brown was injured when a car driving from a loyalist area drove
    at speed at the Catholic youth.

    Last Monday, trouble flared in North Belfast when gangs of
    loyalists attacked Catholic homes with bolts, bottles and bricks
    in the Duncairn Gardens area. A blast bomb thrown at local
    residents fell in the front garden of one house hitting a
    14-year-old boy before exploding. Helen Ellis (17) was standing
    beside the boy when the bomb was thrown from the loyalist Tigers
    Bay area.

    "I saw it coming towards us and went to run but it hit the boy in
    the back before exploding on the ground, " said Helen, "it scared
    me to death and I feel very lucky to be alive." A neighbour
    described taking the boy into her house before fetching his
    mother and rushing him to hospital. "He was in shock and very
    sick," she said, "he was blown off his feet."

    A third teenager was blown off a nearby wall where he had been
    sitting. "I heard a loud blast and fell over," said 16-year-old
    Billy Reid, "thankfully I wasn't hurt but this has got to stop or
    someone will be." Earlier that day a bus carrying Catholic
    children from the same area was pelted with missiles as it left
    for a daytrip to the seaside town of Bangor, Co. Down.

    A Catholic father of two has described his family as "lucky to be
    alive" following a loyalist pipe bomb attack on his North Belfast
    home. The attack in Ingledale Park, off the Crumlin Road, North
    Belfast, took place on Tuesday night.

    The man and his 12-year-old daughter were watching television
    when the device was thrown at the house, smashing the living room
    window. "I grabbed by daughter and ran out of the room," said the
    man, "she was only a few feet from the window and could have been
    scarred for life or killed."

    Two men wearing dark clothes were seen running towards the
    loyalist Forthriver estate after the attack. "We have lived in
    this house for 20 years," said the man, "it will take time for us
    all to feel safe again."

    Lower Sinn Fein Councillor Marie Cush has urged nationalists
    to be vigilant after a Ballymurphy man received a bullet through
    the post accompanied by a death threat sign by the Red Hand
    Defenders, a cover name for the UDA. Bombay Street was again
    targeted by petrol bombers, who pelted nationalist homes from the
    loyalist Cupar's Way.

    In Castlederg, Co. Tyrone, the home of a Catholic family was
    targeted in a paint bomb attack. Windows were smashed and there
    was paint damage to one room and the front of the house. The
    family's car was also attacked. Declan Corry said his family had
    lived in the house for over twelve years.

    Loyalists also firebombed a republican monument on the Fermanagh
    border, causing minor damage to a memorial to Sean South and
    Feargal O'Hanlan on the outskirts of Roslea.

    A 200-year-old Catholic Chapel was damaged in a sectarian arson
    attack last Wednesday night. A fire was started at St. Peter's,
    the Rock Church, Stoneyford, around midnight but was quickly
    spotted by a passing driver. The local parishioner used a fire
    extinguisher to put the fire out, saving the chapel from serious
    damage. This is the second time in three year that that chapel
    had been targeted.

    And today, Gaelic sports grounds across Counties Derry and Tyrone
    are being searched for pipe bombs after two were discovered at
    Desertmartin GAA brounds in Derry. Others were defused in Garvagh
    and Gulladuff, near Maghera.

    A group calling themselves the 'South Londonderry Protestant
    Volunteers', believed to be cover name for the UDA, said last
    night it had left devices on Gaelic sports clubs between
    Coleraine and Cookstown.




    >>>>>> Debate continues over 'non-negotiable' policing plan


    Disagreement on policing reform in the north of Ireland is
    continuing despite the passing of another deadline.

    The British Implementation Plan on Policing published last week
    contains less change to the overwhelmingly Protestant RUC than
    the reforms promised in the Patten Commission's 1999 proposals,
    but more than Ulster Unionists can stomach.

    While Sinn Fein is
    seeking further changes to the plan, and Ulster Unionists remain
    undecided, the nationalist SDLP have accepted it and have bowed
    out of the debate.

    Sinn Fein's Fermanagh and South Tyrone MP Michelle Gildernew
    described the plan as "deeply flawed".

    "Young nationalists and republicans will not be fooled into
    accepting less than their just entitlements; they will not be
    fooled into joining this repackaged RUC; they will not join a
    police service still controlled by the securocrats," she said.

    Pointed out that for the second time within a month a British
    government deadline has been broken, she said the implementation
    plan was "not the last word".

    "Negotiations on policing are set to continue," she said. "The
    days of nationalists accepting less than our just entitlements
    and rights are long gone. Nationalists will not be fooled into
    believing that what is on offer amounts to a new beginning to
    policing."

    But British Secretqary of State John Reid has claimed that his
    implementation plan is "non-negotiable", a comment which has cast
    doubt on a possible resolution of the outstanding issues in the
    peace process.

    By pulling down the shutters on the negotiations, it is feared
    Reid could precipitate a worse crisis when the existing
    difficulty surrounding the election of a first and deputy first
    minister next month.

    Gildernew pledged that Sinn Fein would continue to demand that
    the British government honour their commitments and create the
    new beginning to policing envisaged in the Good Friday Agreement.

    "It will only be at that point that nationalists and republicans
    will give their whole hearted support to a new police service,"
    she added.

    Meanwhile, the Pat Finucane Centre in Derry has issued a
    statement saying that it will not recommend that people join the
    new police service because outstanding concerns about human
    rights have not been addressed. It said that the Patten report
    was a "baseline" which could be worked with, but the Police Act
    2000 and the new Implementation Plan together "still fall far
    short of that baseline".

    It went on: "In the absence of adequate change, a fair-minded
    person joining the police would still have little or no impact on
    the type of policing experienced by the community.

    "While there have been some improvements, there are still a
    number of key ways in which the Implementation Plan fails to deal
    with the institutional and cultural conditions within the RUC
    which have led to human rights abuses in the past and which could
    lead to their occurring again."




    >>>>>> McGuinness's constituency office targeted



    The loyalist bomb attack on the Cookstown Constituency office of
    Sinn Fein MP Martin McGuinness and the under car bobby trap bomb
    discovered underneath a vehicle in Armagh belonging to a former
    Republican POW are clear evidence that the gun and bomb attacks
    have started again, Mitchel McLaughlin told a Belfast press
    conference on Wednesday.

    "What we want to draw attention to is the absurd position being
    adopted by John Reid and Ronnie Flanaghan who, despite the show
    of strength by the UDA last weekend and over 200 loyalist gun and
    bomb attacks, refuse to declare that the UDA ceasefire is over,
    said McLaughlin.

    It is in this context that we have to look at the difficulties
    that are bubbling up within the political process, he said.
    "Policing has been dealt with in a flawed an unsatisfactory way.
    And British military instillations will continue to be a feature,
    even this time next year, notwithstanding the emerging of new
    policing boards under the Mandelson Police Act and the
    implementation plan.

    "This reality will remain, also the reality of the blind eye
    policy towards the ongoing loyalist pogrom and so we're saying to
    people it is time for a reality check. We should be getting
    policing right; we should be getting the political institutions
    back in a way which protects against the unionist veto.

    "We should have been able to adopt some of the demilitarisation
    programme so that installations can be removed and we should be
    able to make them work in concert with political developments
    that deal satisfactorily with the disarmament question," he
    continued.

    The securocrat agenda is running as strong now as any time during
    the past seven years of the peace process and has brought us to
    this point of stagnation, he added. "All of this is heading into
    a quite serious logjam because of the policy and approach of John
    Reid and his advisers."





    >>>>>> British people want out of Ireland - poll


    A survey conducted by ICM for The Guardian newspaper has revealed
    that only one in four Britons believe that the Six Counties
    should remain within the 'United Kingdom'. In what will be a
    deeply unsettling finding for unionists, the poll reveals that
    41% believe that Ireland should be united, whilst only 26% said
    that it should remain a part of Britain. The newspaper said: "For
    unionists, many of whom consider themselves British and refer to
    Britain as 'the mainland', [the] findings amount to a cold
    shoulder from their fellow citizens."

    British propagandists will also be depressed at another of the
    poll's findings, which revealed that, despite the best efforts of
    the Northern Ireland Office, unionists and the right wing media,
    the British public does not blame republicans appreciably more
    than unionists for the current state of the peace process. Some
    64% blame both sides equally whilst 3% thought unionists to blame
    and 5% named republicans. Significantly, the poll did not appear
    to offer those questioned the choice of whether they thought the
    British state was in any way responsible, a question which may
    well have altered the perception of a widespread attitude of "a
    plague on both your houses".

    The results also conform to a wider, long-term consensus that
    Ireland should be united. An overwhelming majority of people in
    the 26 Counties and in the United States support unity. In spite
    of the clear desire by Britons to let Ireland go, Jeffrey
    Donaldson of the UUP yesterday remained undaunted, saying that
    the only view which counted was not that of millions of people in
    Britain - whose taxpayers pay untold billions in order to
    maintain the British presence, or indeed that of millions more in
    Ireland and the United States - but that of unionism alone.
    Writing in Wednesday's Guardian, he claimed: "Far from being
    upset by the poll, unionists will draw comfort from the
    constitutional and political reality that under the principle of
    consent, their future in the union will be determined by the
    people of Northern Ireland themselves, voting in a real poll." He
    was, of course, using the term "people" in the same sense as the
    DUP, which employs it to refer only the unionist people.

    Whether the British government, which was voted into power on far
    less than 41% of the population (indeed, was voted in on almost
    exactly the same percentage as the minority who want to retain
    the Six Counties), will heed this verdict on its continued
    presence in Ireland remains to be seen, but The Guardian on
    Tuesday observed that "British officials have spoken privately of
    a limited public patience in Britain with Northern Ireland and
    its problems".

    In its editorial, the newspaper conceded that the poll will be
    "heartbreaking news to unionists.

    "Their whole world is built on the perception of themselves as UK
    citizens - even as Brits - who by some irrelevant fluke of
    geography happen to be located across the Irish Sea. They are, in
    the cliche, more British than the British. They wave the flag,
    speak reverentially of the crown and cling to customs that
    vanished from the place they still think of as "the mainland" in
    the '50s. To enter the head offices of the Ulster Unionist party
    is to see the Britain of a bygone era: portraits of the Queen Mum
    on the staircase. Now they hear, via an opinion poll, that the
    feelings are not mutual - that most of us do not want them."





    >>>>>> Concern over political agenda in Colombia case



    Despite an apparent lack of evidence to justify a prosecution,
    the Attorney General in Colombia yesterday decided that three
    Irishmen, arrested in Bogota last week, could remain in jail for
    up to eight months while an investigation into alleged
    training of rebels is carried out.

    The last-minute decision to prosecute followed a wave of media
    hysteria over the men's activities, and has led to concern
    that the prosecution is being driven by a political agenda.

    Caroline Sanchez, spokeswoman for Colombia's prosecution office
    said: "The prosecutor's office has 240 days to build the case,
    gather evidence against them and determine whether it will send
    the men to trial or shelve the case."

    Sinn Fein has reaffirmed that the three are not party members and
    urged that their arrest not be allowed to disrupt the Irish peace
    process.

    "We have three Irishmen who may well be three republicans who
    have been charged with a passport transgression which they are
    not denying. All of the other issues have failed to stand up,"
    said party chairman Mitchel McLaughlin.

    He said people should not be surprised that an attempt was being
    made to "keep air" in what he described as a "non-story". He also
    criticised the lack attention to the ongoing loyalist attacks on
    nationalist property including the constituency office of Sinn
    Fein MP Martin McGuinness.

    There needed to be a "reality check" in the process, he added.
    "We should be getting policing right. We should be getting the
    institutions back in a way that they are protected against the
    unionist veto. We are heading into a serious logjam because of
    the approach of John Reid."

    Despite the hype surrounding the case, the detention of
    foreigners returning from rebel-held areas of Colombia is not
    unusual, according to local reports. In 1999, an Italian
    parliamentarian was accused of being a representative of the Red
    Brigade, while a Japanese journalist was once suspected of
    training rebels in martial arts.

    Meanwhile, the family of one of the three Irishmen detained in
    Colombia has expressed fears over the men's safety.

    In a statement last night, the family of Niall Connolly said they
    had endured 10 days of "false accusations, wild allegations and
    innuendo".

    They said they had asked the Minister of Foreign Affairs in
    Dublin "to intervene directly with the Colombian authorities,
    including the military, to ensure their lives are protected and
    they are kept safe from any physical abuse or danger while in
    custody," the family said.

    The family said the men will not get a fair trial "in a country
    where human rights and due process are routinely ignored".

    "We deeply appreciate the very many messages of support we have
    received and would ask all those concerned about protecting human
    rights to call for their immediate release and early return to
    their families," the statement added.

    If formally convicted, the men could face up to twenty years in
    prison.





    >>>>>> New closures blight Tiger economy




    The news from General Semiconductor in Macroom and Fujitsu's
    15,000 redundancies worldwide last week were just two more chill
    winds telling us that the Tiger days are over. When you add in
    other redundancies at Baltimore and the closure of Cardbase in
    Dublin you have a clear trend developing.

    The Tiger growth period is over yet we are all still working,
    still doing the things that a year ago were part of Ireland's
    success story and now are deemed to be part of a troubled
    economy. It was only weeks ago in Brazil that Bertie Ahern
    proclaimed, "It's a good time to be Irish".

    This week though, things are very different. Enterprise Trade and
    Employment minister Mary Harney went to Macroom where 670 workers
    will lose their jobs by Christmas. The minister set up a task
    force that would seek to find alternative employment for the
    area. It is estimated that General Semi added #30 million
    annually to the local economy in the region.

    At the same time, the Ireland's Industrial Development Authority
    (IDA) has been in consultation with the remaining technology
    firms here to see if there are any other blips on the radar. IDA
    figures show that 52,000 people work in this sector in the 26
    Counties and that 4,500 jobs have been lost since the start of
    the year. During this time, 2,500 new jobs have come on stream,
    leaving a deficit of 2,000 workers.

    However, the spin-off effects a closure like General
    Semiconductor can have on a local economy are much greater than
    the initial job losses. Hundreds of service economy jobs are
    dependent on the income of the technology workers.

    There are obvious problems of dependency on inward investment
    business across the whole island economy and it will take much
    more than a task force to redress this issue. However, there is
    also an obvious international dimension to the problem. The US
    downturn, the slowing international economy, are portrayed as
    being like the weather, something to be accepted with a shrug.

    There has also been no response from those who style themselves
    as the leaders of the international economy, the G8 and the
    European Union. They usually ignore the economic problems of the
    less developed states and now it seems that this applies to the
    industrialised world as well.





    >>>>>> Mickey Devine remembered



    On Monday night, 20 August, the 20th anniversary of the death of
    hunger striker Mickey Devine, hundreds of republicans gathered at
    the home of his sister, Margaret, in the Creggan Estate in Derry
    to take part in a commemoration and unveiling of a new mural in
    memory of Mickey. It was from this home that Mickey Devine was
    waked and buried. His sister Margaret and his son Michael junior
    unveiled the mural.

    Among those in the large attendance were members of the Devine
    and Lynch families aas well as Martin McGuinness, Mitchel
    McLaughlin, Jim Gibney, Danny Morrison, Tom Hartley and Seanna
    Walsh, who had travelled from Belfast together with members of
    the Clonard Street Committee.

    Bernie Boyle, who was in Armagh prison in 1981, chaired the event
    and gave a special welcome to the many former prisoners and
    activists who were present at the event. Kevin Campbell, a former
    blanket man, read a short account of Michael's life, tracing his
    political involvement from his early teens and recalling how he
    was a founder member of the IRSP and INLA in Derry.

    The main speaker was Mary Nelis, who gave a moving and emotional
    oration, speaking of Michael's extraordinary courage and also the
    strength of the family and the families of all the hunger
    strikers and the protesting prisoners in Armagh and the H Blocks.

    She reminded the crowd that Mickey Devine was born and raised in
    Springtown camp, a collection of Nissen huts used to house those
    that the unionists rated second class citizens. It was here that
    he experienced injustice at first hand and realised that
    injustice had to be dismantled. Mickey Devine embarked on the
    road to end injustice and that journey took him to Long Kesh and
    eventually to his death.

    Nelis urged people to continue that struggle to ensure that
    Mickey's children and our children could have justice and
    equality. This, she said, would come in the establishment of a 32
    County Democratic Socialist Republic.

    As part of the ongoing commemoration of Michael Devine and his
    nine comrades, the Derry 1981 Committee will be displaying the
    local Derry Hunger Strike Exhibition in the Corn Beef Centre,
    Central Drive, Creggan, beginning at 7.30pm on Thursday 23
    August, made up of photos and a people's video diary relating to
    the experiences of 1981 in Derry. The exhibition will run until
    Monday 27 August.





    >>>>>> Feature: Soldiers of misfortune


    During the Great War, 26 Irishmen serving in the British Army
    were executed by firing squad on the flimsiest of pretexts. Many
    were underage. Some were mentally handicapped. None deserved
    their fate. MICHAEL MULQUEEN writes on the campaign to clear
    their names.


    Patrick J Downey from Limerick was just 19 when he was tied to a
    pole, blindfolded and shot by a firing squad on December 18,
    1915. At least, he said he was 19. He was probably much younger.
    It is believed that he lied about his age so he could join the
    British Army for "the great adventure" in the French trenches.

    The crime for which he was court-martialed was refusing the order
    of a senior officer to wear his hat. He didn't want to wear the
    hat because it was freezing cold and wet after it fell from his
    head while he was tied, crucifixion-style, to a wheel of a gun
    carriage.

    He was one of 26 young Irishmen coldly shot to death by the
    British, for whom they were fighting in the First World War. This
    week, Taoiseach Bertie Ahern was asked to lend his support to the
    campaign to persuade British Prime Minister Tony Blair to grant
    pardons to these young men.

    The pressure group Shot At Dawn, based in Britain, is leading a
    chorus of outrage about what it describes as the "murders" of the
    Irishmen, condemned to die because their nerves were shattered or
    because they were judged too "stupid" to be of any use as cannon
    fodder.

    The group, backed up by expert research, reveals that the men's
    Irish backgrounds made the haughty officer class even more
    inclined to sentence them on the most appallingly thin evidence
    and for the most ridiculous "offences".

    Like Patrick J Downey, many of the Irish sentenced to death as
    cowards and deserters were teenagers. Some were intellectually
    disabled, but still forced to represent themselves against their
    feared military superiors in courts that cared little for due
    process and ordered 306 dubious executions frequently because the
    top brass believed a firing squad was good for trench discipline.

    For decades the stories of the Irish 26 were kept under lock and
    key on the orders of Whitehall. But the investigative efforts of
    both leading historians and Shot At Dawn have now revealed the
    shameful actions of the Army's officer class actions which still
    provoke fierce denials by the British military establishment.

    Shot At Dawn founder John Hipkin (74), who was the youngest
    member of the British forces to be imprisoned during World War
    Two, speaks with passion of the Irish dead to whom he has given a
    voice.

    "Ireland is an independent country, these are its own citizens,"
    he says. "If a Commonwealth country like New Zealand can pardon
    its five soldiers, the government of a sovereign country is in a
    much stronger position.

    "Let us honour all our dead. Let Bertie Ahern align himself to
    Helen Clarke, the New Zealand premier. It would be a wonderful
    gesture to wipe the slate clean. It would cost the politicians
    nothing, there's no compensation involved. The relatives just
    want to get the names cleared."

    Most of these soldiers came from pitifully poor backgrounds and
    had little or no education. Although encouraged to join up either
    to preserve the Union with Britain or win Home Rule, they were
    brow-beaten, through a tradition of loyalty, into serving the
    moneyed elite.

    World War One was the last true war of class distinction and
    terms such as battlefield trauma, nervous disorder and
    post-traumatic stress would have been regarded as evil among a
    General Corps whose guiding philosophy could generously be summed
    up as 'Shoot the blackguards!'.

    In the case of the Irish, the common soldier had to bear the
    burden not only of his servant class but also his accent, which
    quickly marked him out as a target for discrimination.

    The number of Irish executed while serving with the British Army
    during war is alarmingly out of proportion, according to leading
    British academics including Professor Gerard Oram in his book
    Race, Eugenics and the Death Penalty Passed by Military Courts of
    the British Army.

    Like his 25 executed comrades, Private no. 6/227 Patrick J Downey
    volunteered to fight. He joined the 5th Royal Munster Fusiliers
    and was later transferred to the 6th Leinster Regiment.

    Details of his grim end came to light through groundbreaking
    investigations carried out by two historians, Julian Putkowski
    and Julian Sykes, for their book Shot At Dawn.

    Perhaps suffering from the terrors of the trenches, maybe
    sickened by the sight of the rats that fed off the corpses of his
    comrades, Downey could not adjust to life at the front. It's not
    surprising. When his troubles peaked in November, 1915, he was
    officially listed as 19 years and nine months old, but is
    believed to have been a good deal younger.

    That month, he was sentenced to 84 days of a barbaric practice
    known as 'Field Punishment Number 1'. As well as performing heavy
    duties on restricted diets, Field Punishment Number 1 also
    involved being 'crucified' by the wrists and ankles to cartwheels
    for periods each day.

    We get a picture of what it was like for Downey in the writings
    of another soldier, Archie Baxter, a conscientious objector who
    survived the punishment: "My hands were tied together and pulled
    well up, straining and cramping muscles and forcing them into an
    unnatural position... I was strained so tightly... that I was
    unable to move a fraction of an inch... the pain grew steadily
    worse until by the end of half-an-hour, it seemed absolutely
    unendurable."

    It appears that on the following day, Downey's cap, which he was
    forced to wear while tied, fell into the freezing muck of the
    tented camp where his division was billeted. He was ordered by a
    Captain Craddock to put the sodden cap back on his head, but
    twice refused.

    For this, he was hauled before a full Field General Court
    Marshal. Transcripts of the entire trial, obtained by Julian
    Putkowski, run to three pages of notepaper, less than one-third
    of the length of this article.

    His trial took place at Hasanli, Serbia, on 1 December 1915.
    Presiding was a Captain R Mansergh, 6th Battalion, Royal Irish
    Rifles, and two lieutenants. Official regulations that a Field
    Officer preside over his case were waived by Brigadier-General RS
    Vandeleur on the grounds that "none can be spared".

    Remarkably, Downey was recorded as having pleaded guilty to
    disobeying a lawful command of a superior officer, an admission
    that was tantamount to suicide. At no point did the teenager, who
    had to represent himself, request to cross-examine any of his
    superiors who testified against him. He simply told the court
    that he had never been in prison while in civilian life.

    Captain Mansergh and his fellow officers were unanimous in
    sentencing him to death, noting his "very bad" character. Downey
    started to laugh and said: "That is a good joke. You let me
    enlist and then you bring me out here and shoot me."

    The proceedings were referred to Lieutenant-General Bernard
    Mahon, Commanding British Forces in Greece, who tellingly wrote:
    "Under ordinary circumstances, I would have hesitated to
    recommend that the Capital Sentence awarded be put into effect as
    a plea of guilty has erroneously been accepted by the Court, but
    the conditions of discipline in the Battalion is such as to
    render an exemplary punishment highly desirable and I therefore
    hope that the Commander in Chief will see fit to approve the
    sentence of death in this instance."

    Downey was shot at 8am on December 18, 1915, at Eurenjik, near
    the port of Salonika, by a firing squad commanded by a Captain
    Charles Villiers of the 10th Irish Division. His death was
    reported to be instantaneous.

    As we see with Downey, battle trauma or shell-shock as it used to
    be called wasn't recognised as a defence; nor were what we would
    label 'special needs' in today's more correct terminology. But
    Derry-born Private Bernard McGeehan, who was about 30 when he was
    executed, fell most assuredly into that category, according to
    Julian Putkowski of London University.

    Putkowski has been researching and writing about dissent and
    discipline in the First World War British Army for over 20 years.
    He includes McGeehan's case in a book, Unquiet Graves, he is
    writing with Flemish historian Piet Chielens.

    Of those officers who sentenced Private McGeehan to death,
    Putkowski says: "Their callous, compassionless and unimaginative
    behaviour toward McGeehan provides further ammunition for critics
    who insist that senior British officers had neither sympathy not
    understanding about the plight of the rank and file during the
    First World War."

    McGeehan was hauled before a Field General Court Marshal on a
    charge of desertion, following the massacre of more than half of
    his battalion at Guillemont in August, 1916. McGeehan, described
    as "stupid" by his officers, was kept behind lines on transport
    duty during action and so survived. He was listed as missing for
    six successive days in September, eventually turning up without
    rifle or equipment.

    His trial, recorded on just two pages of unlined paper, makes
    depressing reading. Putkowski says: "What was to emerge about the
    soldier's character during the latter part of his trial and
    subsequently, and the failure of the court to secure an officer
    to assist McGeehan's defence reduced the proceedings to a shoddy
    exercise in judicial murder."

    McGeehan's own testimony tells of a hopeless man unable to cope
    with being the brunt of trench bullying: "Ever since I joined,
    all the men have made fun of me and I didn't know what I was
    doing when I went away. Every time I go into the trenches, they
    throw stones at me and pretend it is shrapnel, and they call me
    all sorts of names. I have been out here 18 months and had no
    leave."

    That did not quench the bloodlust of his senior officers, who
    agreed that he be condemned to die. "He seems of weak intellect
    and is worthless as a soldier," said his judges, his jury and his
    executioners.

    From a modern standpoint, the implications of McGeehan's case are
    clear: he, like many others, was shot to death, argues Putkowski,
    "because his officers felt he had no further military use as a
    fighting man, other than as a source of grisly propaganda with
    which to intimidate his fellow soldiers".

    Evidence of McGeehan's shattered nerves, intellectual weakness
    and torment by bullies cut no ice. Neither did the mercy plea of
    Belfast's George Hanna, who was refused leave when three of his
    brothers died in action. Nor that of Dublin's Thomas Davis, who
    was executed even though he had dysentary.

    Shot At Dawn may well have fired the first salvo in the battle
    for belated justice for these soldiers.




    >>>>>> Analysis: Stooping to pressure on policing

    BY MICHAEL PIERSE



    Adding to the general thrust of negative forces now attempting to
    isolate Sinn Fein and impede the implementation of the Good
    Friday Agreement, the SDLP's decision to accept this week's
    policing proposals amounted to little more than a genuflection to
    John Reid.

    The SDLP decision also revealed why they are traditionally
    referred to disparagingly in some quarters as the 'stoops' - or
    'stoop down low party'. Browne reminded readers in Wednesday's
    Irish Times that there is no point in trying to push through
    policing legislation without the support of Sinn Fein, because
    "however unfortunate it may be, the SDLP and the Catholic
    hierarchy don't matter. They went along, for the most part, with
    the reformed RUC of 1970 - and remember what happened to it?"

    In an act of establishment choreography, the Dublin government,
    followed by the Catholic bishops, followed by the SDLP, endorsed
    a very watery dilution indeed of the Patten Report. It still
    fires plastic bullets, still refuses to take an oath on the
    upholding of human rights, cedes the power to block judicial
    inquiries to the British Secretary of State and the RUC Chief
    Constable, and is based on a grey implementation plan which is
    not to be set in train until the end of 2002 - a grey package
    endorsed by all the grey elements of Irish society.

    Clearly, this falls short of what nationalists and republicans
    require in terms of policing - their rights, now, and in black
    and white. The SDLP, as Mitchel McLaughlin put it, is prepared to
    accept "half a loaf". Sinn Fein is not. As a result of the SDLP
    decision, the British Secretary of State, John Reid, is now
    maintaining that the policing debate is closed - "non
    negotiable".


    Colombia hysteria

    Not only have the SDLP been strengthening John Reid's hand this
    week, but the securocrats have been at it as well. The arrest of
    three Irish men allegedly carrying false passports in Colombia
    has formed the basis for more speculation than the deaths of JFK,
    Elvis Presley and Vladmir Rasputin combined. British Intelligence
    have peddled tales of IRA Volunteers procuring everything from
    drugs to napalm bombs in the Colombian jungle.

    It was claimed that the three were caught on Colombian cameras
    training FARC guerillas. This was later retracted. It was claimed
    that the three had traces of bomb-making material and cocaine on
    their clothes. This was retracted also. It was claimed that one
    of them was charged - retracted again. Sinn Fein rubbished
    reports that one of the men was the party's Cuban representative
    - such a position does not even exist. On Wednesday, the men were
    charged but the Colombians have yet to come up with any
    substantive evidence that the men were engaged in any illegal
    activity on their journey to Colombia.

    Indeed, the family of one of the men, Niall Connolly, has now
    asked Dublin Foreign Affairs Minister Brian Cowen to intervene,
    expressing deep concern for the men's wellbeing. They can be held
    for up to eight months while the Colombian authorities attempt to
    build a case against them.

    The incredible thing about all of this is that the vast bulk of
    the establishment media has been prepared to take the word of
    British securocrats and print and reprint allegations that they
    had no hope of substantiating. Incredible also, that the arrest,
    without charge, of three Irish men, 5,000 miles away, has
    warranted, in one week, more media coverage than the 200-or-so
    loyalist attacks on nationalists and republicans this year. The
    hypocrisy is baffling.



    Unionism benefits

    For unionism, as we observed last week, recent events
    have been going very much their way. David Trimble's intention of
    collapsing the institutions, creating a crisis and blaming it all
    on republicans has, with a little nifty MI5 media manipulation,
    worked a treat.

    Again, the choreography was perfect. The IRA makes a proposal on
    arms, which is summarily rejected by the UUP. The British
    government takes the perverse step of backing up the UUP position
    by suspending the Agreement institutions, leaving the IRA with no
    choice but to revoke its proposal, citing UUP intransigence and
    British government failure to keep the process on track as their
    reasons for doing so.

    Now, with the support of the SDLP, the two governments and even
    the DUP, the erosion of the Good Friday Agreement Trimble
    prophesised after "crisis" and "suspension" is regrettably coming
    to pass.

    What is lost in all of this is the principle of democracy. The
    SDLP's decision to support the new policing proposals was
    heralded as the historic acceptance of policing in the Six
    Counties by nationalists, while John Reid says the proposals are
    non negotiable.

    But the proposals themselves take democratic power away from the
    people in that it is not the people of the Six Counties, or their
    elected representatives, but John Reid and Ronnie Flanagan who
    are the final arbiters of what amounts to a repackaged RUC will
    look like. They must be reminded that fair, impartial,
    accountable policing is not a concession. It's a right.



    Brits out poll

    The UUP's Michael McGimpsey stated this week that Sinn Fein is
    "isolated" and "out of touch". But disturbingly for unionism,
    there is another democratic trend running contrary to what David
    Trimble and, indeed, the British government are trying to
    achieve. According to an ICM poll, published in The Guardian
    newspaper this week, only 26 per cent of British people think the
    Six Counties should be occupied by Britain, while 46 per cent
    support a United Ireland. The other 23 per cent, the Guardian
    surmises, simply don't care. While unionists can take succour
    from the behaviour of British spooks and Irish stoops this week,
    in the long term it is they, rather than Sinn Fein, who are
    facing isolation.





    >>>>>> Events in Ireland and Britain


    SF FUNCTION: Kildare SF are to hold a function to commemorate the
    1981 Hunger Strike. Music by the Highwaymen. 9pm Thursday 23
    August (note change of date), Stirrups pub, NEWBRIDGE, County
    Kildare. Ex-POW in attendance. Info from Siobhan on 087-9579743

    SUMMER SCHOOL: 13th Desmond Greaves Summer School Friday-Sunday,
    24-26 August 2001. Irish Labour History Museum, Beggars Bush
    Barracks, Haddington Road, Ballsbridge, DUBLIN. Friday 24 August
    7.30 pm. Global Power, Local Power: Can Globalisation be
    harnessed? Professor Denis O'Hearn, sociologist and economist,
    Queens University Belfast. Chair: Dr Treasa Galvin, Lecturer in
    Sociology, Trinity College Dublin; Saturday 25 August 2.30 pm.
    Self-determination and Democracy in the Constitution of the EU,
    Dr D. Rossa Phelan BL, Lecturer in European Law, TCD. Chair:
    Anthony Coughlan, Secretary, The National Platform; Evening 8.30
    pm, Social Venue: The Teachers' Club, 36 Parnell Square; Sunday
    26 August, 11am, The North-South economy: Paths to economic unity
    in Ireland, Douglas Hamilton, economist and policy adviser.
    Chair: Mr Robert Heatley, Lecturer, North Down Educational
    College; 2.30pm, Modern Republicanism, from the Hunger Strike to
    the Good Friday Agreement, Jim Gibney, Sinn Fein, Belfast; Mick
    O'Reilly, ATGW, Dublin. Chair: Kevin McCorry, lawyer and civil
    rights activist, former secretary NICRA; Evening 8pm, PARTY: 24
    Belgrave Road, Rathmines, Dublin. Bookings @ Admission Full
    School: #15 Individual sessions: #4. Unwaged: half-price.
    Bookings to Micheal O Loingsigh, Summer School Director, 24
    Belgrave Road, Dublin 6 (Tel. 298 5315)

    FUNDRAISER: Featuring Gerry Brown and the Stubliners. Friday 24
    August, Gray's, Newmarket Street, DUBLIN. Taille #5

    BOOK LAUNCH: Family Friends and Neighbours An Irish
    Photobiography by Oistin Mac Bride, foreward by Gerry Adams,
    Dublin Launch. 6.30pm Friday 24 August, Gallery of Photography,
    Meeting House Square, Temple Bar, DUBLIN. Author signing. All
    welcome

    THE LAUGHTER OF OUR CHILDREN: The play on the 1981 Hunger Strikes
    returns to West Belfast for Saturday 25 August at 8pm. Tickets
    can be booked on 90202222 and from Monday 21 August at the Flower
    Bay

    FLEADH CEOL WEEKEND: Commencing 10.30am Saturday 25 August, Mass
    in St Mary's Church, LISTOWEL, County Kerry in memory of the
    Hunger Strikers. Followed by parade to the Old Graveyard for
    plaque unveiling. Culminating in opening of North Kerry Sf Ofice
    in Market Street at 1pm. More info next week

    HUNGER STRIKE COMMEMORATION: Cainteoiri: Owen Carron and Coireail
    MacCurtain. Assemble 7.30 Saturday 25 August, Kennedy Bridge,
    Rossa GAA park and march to monument in square, SKIBERREEN,
    County Cork. Youghal RFB will head march. Commemoration will be
    followed by Oiche cheoil agus amhrean in Cellar Bar, various
    local musicians singers and followers of republican
    commemorations to participate .Organised by Cumann Francis
    Hughes, Sinn Fein

    HUNGER STRIKE MEMORIAL MARCH: Assemble 3pm Sunday 26 August,
    Devonshire Arms Hotel, YOUGHAL, County Cork for march to 1798
    Memorial Park. Speakers: Eoghan Mac Cormaic and Gerry Kelly. RFB
    in attendance

    PUBLIC MEETING: The Truth About the Turkish Hunger Strikes. 8pm
    Tuesday 28 August, La Touche Hotel, GREYSTONES, County Wicklow.
    Videos and speakers who recently met the hunger strikers.
    Organised by the Wicklow Turkish Hunger Strike Solidarity
    Committee

    SF FUNCTION: Featuring Shan Nos. Friday 31 August, Katty Neds,
    DUNSHAUGHLIN, County Meath. Prominent speaker. Taille #5

    WEST TYRONE VOLUNTEERS AND IRSIH HUNGER STRIKERS' COMMEMORATIVE
    WEEK: Saturday 25 August: Irish night at Katy Daly's Nite Club
    with the Wolfe Tones, 9pm. Adm #12; Friday 31 August: Friday 31
    August: Turkish hunger strike video and display, 7.30pm.
    Sigerson's GAA Club Jim McAleer Memorial Quiz. Sigerson's GAA
    Club. Musaic by Terry Boyle and Scotland's Gerry MacGregor;
    Tuesday 28 August-Friday 31 August, National H-Block Exhibition
    in the Cairde Centre from 9am-9pm Tuesday-Thursday and 9am-7pm
    Friday; Saturday 1 September: Family fun Day and Gaelic Match,
    2pmSigerson's GAA Grounds. Entertainment afterwards in Clubroom
    with Terry Boyle. All other trad musicians welcome to perform;
    Sunday 2 September: Annual Volunteer March and Rally. Parade will
    proceed from Davy's Shop in Ballycolman Estate to West Tyrone
    Republican Plot in Strabane Cemetery. Bands in attendance and
    prominent speaker. Tea and refreshments will be served in
    Fountain Street Community Centre following proceedings. Failte
    Roimh Cach. Organsied by Cairde Strabane Republican Ex-Prisoners'
    Group

    NATIONAL HUNGER STRIKE EXHIBITION: 2-9pm Tuesday 4 September, La
    Touche Hotel, GREYSTONES, County Wicklow; Also Royal Hotel,ARKLOW
    on Wednesday 5 September, 2-9pm. Organsied by the Wicklow '81
    Committee

    PUBLIC MEETING: Crisis in the Peace Process. 7.30pm Wednesday 5
    September, Liberty Hall, DUBLIN. Speakers: Gerry Kelly and North
    Belfast Residents

    SF FUNDRAISER: In aid of Dublin Southeast SF, featuirng Tuan
    (Cruncher and Bik). 8.30pm Friday 7 September, Seapoint house,
    Irishtown, DUBLIN. Taile #5. Further info from Daithi on
    086-8534666

    IRISH NIGHT: Featuring Shan Nos. Friday 7 September, Mountview
    Hotel, DERRYLIN, County Fermanagh. Taille #5

    TURKISH HUNGER STRIKES NATINAL MARCH AND RALLY: Assemble 2pm
    Saturday 8 September, Garden of Remembrance, Parnell Square,
    DUBLIN and march to the GPO for music, song and messages of
    support from various political parties. Benefit function that
    night, 8:30pm, Abbey Hotel, Abbey Street, Dublin

    SF FUNDRAISER: Featuring Bik McFarlane and Cruncher O'Neill as
    Tuan. 8.30pm Saturday 8 September, Decie's Country Bar, Decies
    Road, BALLYFERMOT, County Dublin. Taille #5

    HUNGER STRIKE ANNIVERSARY MARCH: Assemble 12 noon Sunday 23
    September, Speakers' Corner, Hyde Park, LONDON, England and march
    for rally to Trafalgar Square. Speakers: Gerry Kelly (SF), Dennis
    Goldberg (sentenced with Nelson Mandela) and john McDonnell
    (Labour MP). Also reps from Turkish hunger strikers and music.
    Organised by the '80/'81 Hunger Strike Commemoration Committee,
    BM Box 6191, London WC1N 3XX. Tel/Fax 020-8442-8778

    SF ARD FHEIS FUNCTION: Featuring country-renowned balladeers Shan
    Nos. 9pm Saturday 29 September, Irish Film Centre, Temple Bar,
    DUBLIN. Taille: #6

    NATIONAL HUNGER STRIKE RALLY: Assemble 2pm Saturday 6 October,
    Garden of Remembrance, Parnell Square, DUBLIN and march to GPO




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  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Going with recent terror attacks and all linking with middle east terror groups and Osama BiN Laden the attempts to destroy the city of london and the taking of innocent lives in new york previous, Should Bin Laden start a political wing and want power within Iraq or any other country for that matter Knowing that the man and his henchies are totally Anti Brittish and American and will continue to wreck millions of lives if things dont go his way do we vote them into rule us or any others who they pose a threat < i thinks not>. What right has Sinn Fien got to request that the Brits in N.I have them power rule over them. We wouldnt let Al quiada into the brittish g'ment and certainly wouldnt get a seat in usa, how wrong for any of you to relate unionists defending thier children and wives and homes as any parent would do against a force that fights for nothing other than ethnic cleanising... Finding this post and some of your views disgusted me ... Fair play to the other Republican parties who have a voice other than that of guns and bombs but not members of terror groups who have admited to killing, had intent to kill, gave commands to kill and are just all out Brit haters, to say return N.I to these ppl is to give Sadam hussain Iraq again. Do you think stormont would like to have Micheal Stone or Johnny MadDog Adair on the benches ??? The British ppl of N.I have long into thier past defend our Islands as now when they try to defend thier own and they become terrorists. Reading the views of you cowardly ppl have condemned those who have as much right to live without fear and defend themselfs as much as you have the right to a fate worse than death itself. The Protestants and others in N.I defended Brtiain when they were called upon now stand up and do the same for them!!!
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    This thread is 4 years old, if you want to rant and rave about the IRA make a new one up. I think you're quite typical of many people here, I wouldn't mind Michael Stone in goverment, he has a right but didn't the UDP disband a few years ago? People like Sinn Fein, people vote for them, they're in government. The IRA have said they're going to decomission. What more do you need.
This discussion has been closed.