Monday, May 12, 2014

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Goodies and Baddies

Guest Writer David McSweeney with a piece on the arrest of Gerry Adams.

The Sinn Fein press conference held following the release of Gerry Adams laid bare many issues.

In response to questions following his statement Adams stated in reference to the legislation under which he was detained “it denies citizens all their rights”.

Seventeen years after the Stormont/GFA deal and the six county state is being run on the basis of legislation which one of the architects of the deal acknowledges denies all rights to citizens. Adams’ admission makes all the feigning of not understanding the opposition to the GFA all the more stomach churning. Mr Adams feeble attempts to equate political opposition to British rule in Ireland with armed action or violence are tiresome and threadbare.

What many Irish Republicans opposed to the Provisional Sinn Fein strategy are crying out for is a political process that deals with issues such as sovereignty, human rights, respect, inclusiveness, economic justice and naked raw reconciliation, where all can look each other in the eye apologise, vent accuse and forgive. Enough of staged Punch and Judy shows most recently seen in Michael D Higgins trip to Britain. To cry “war war” as Adams does to try and silence those he calls dissidents when what they are calling for is meaningful “jaw jaw” is disingenuous in the extreme.

One person who has shown a level of consistency and integrity beyond reproach in Irish journalistic life in the last twenty years is Anthony McIntyre. Anthony whether you agree or not, has cried out for armed Republican groups to stop their campaigns, he has told them they are futile. So Adams don’t dare to throw up a smoke screen of reference to peoples genuine fears of a return to conflict to avoid politically engaging with the likes of Anthony McIntyre. As importantly in personal terms Anthony has made human and genuine links with the Loyalist and Unionist community including for example being invited to speak at an Orange Lodge on Irish Republicanism. This was a monumental and brilliant development, but because it didn’t come under the “Process” hegemony it had to be sidelined.

The website this appears on has been a micro example of how the reconciliation and then peace we all want will come about. Robert, Matthew, John, and others - from the hip debate - sometimes respect - open human interaction. Those who have been a part of the process which led to Stormont have been warped by its deviousness. I believe that many Unionists/Loyalists realise now that they will get a more genuine and meaningful interaction from some characterised “dissidents” than they will from “process” parties. Again Mr Adams' post release press conference highlighted this.

Adams in his preamble to attacking the Boston project pointed out that one of the pioneers of the historical project was ‘Professor Paul Bew a former advisor to former unionist leader David Trimble,’ he left this hanging as if it was a scathing indictment of anyone involved. This is the same David Trimble that Sinn Fein designed, drew up and signed the Good Friday Agreement with. What an insult to the Unionist community, the insinuation that a unionist involvement invalidates something. It would seem Paul Bew and David Trimble suffer from the same affliction Sinn Fein have diagnosed for the RUC/PSNI namely the “Goodie/Baddie" syndrome.

The Sinn Fein leader seemed very angered by the fact that certain statements put to him were identified by reference to a letter yet had no problem saying the following in his statement:
 “Both Moloney and McIntyre are opponents of the Sinn Fein leadership and our peace strategy and have interviewed former republicans who are also hostile to me and other Sinn Fein leaders. These former republicans have accused us of betrayal and sell-out and have said we should be shot because of our support for the Good Friday Agreement and policing”.
Who called for Adams and Co to be shot? What are their names?

Mr Adams cloaked his statement in an impression that he cared about the families of victims. The Sands family have been open in expressing their wish that Sinn Fein do not use the memory of their loved one to advance that party’s sordid agenda. Adams in his statement invokes Vol Bobby Sands and then makes reference to the quality of the food he received in Antrim Rd barracks. This was a calculated attempt to cause hurt.

Mary Lou McDonald gave an interview (1/5/2014) to Chris Donoghue on the morning programme of Newstalk following the arrest of Gerry Adams.

The host of the show asked McDonald “Do you support the PSNI investigation into the murder of Jean mc Conville?” The Vice President of PSF answered, 'I fully support all PSNI investigations.'

Confusing. Earlier in the interview in her contention that her party president’s arrest was political, Mary Lou made the comment that the arrest had emanated from “an element of the old guard” within the RUC/PSNI. Mary Lou is saying she would support investigations carried out by the “old guard”.

Do the “Goodie Baddies” in the RUC/PSNI, the ones Martin McGuinness shakes hands with in his self admitted private face time meetings, have physical characteristics that distinguish them from the “Baddie Baddies”? Do they have a special handshake they give the Shinners maybe? If not, when grafting hard on the policing boards on behalf of the RUC/PSNI how do they know they are not doing the bidding of the “baddie baddies” or the “dark side” as the “deputy First Minister” referred to them?

It has been pointed out ad nausem to anyone interested that the RUC/PSNI Special Branch is stuffed to the gills with RUC political police. In 2012 the BBC revealed that over three quarters of civilian staff employed by the RUC/PSNI on temporary contracts were RUC personnel who had taken redundancy and were now allowed back into the force. Nearly half of these the BBC report indicated were involved in sensitive areas including intelligence gathering.

If the Shinners were concerned about political policing, for example, instead of supporting the arrest of Ivor Bell they would have put their huge PR machine behind the family of Raymond McCord. The Mc Cord family are a brave family. The loss of their son, Raymond, murdered by a UVF gang led by an RUC informer would have been just as painful as the McConville family’s experience. In 2012 Vivienne McCord made a court challenge to the rehiring of retired RUC officers to work on historical investigations. The court rejected her application for a judicial review. The media barley mentioned the McCords search for justice for the death of their loved one.

So blatant was the rehiring of hugely compensated retired RUC elements back into the police, the largest public sector union in the six counties, NIPSA, in 2012 sought a judicial review of the practice. In its application the union said there were rehirings happening without any open competition, and that this practice had resulted in 'a culture of jobs for the boys.'

The use of a private firm to handle the employment of fixed term contracts enabled the circumvention of the 50:50 requirement in RUC/PSNI recruitment. Sectarian and pointless as the obligation is, its overturning by the Crown government was a genuine anti- process move. How much opposition did it evoke?

Speaking at the unveiling of a mural in support of Gerry Adams, Derry Royalist Martin Mc Guinness commented “there is an embittered rump of the RUC in the PSNI trying to settle old scores”. When you add this rump to the rump re-employed you have what Eirigi described in relation to the RUC/PSNI nearly a decade ago as a force best described in terms of “Different name - Same Aim”.

Mc Guinness recently prostrated himself before the Commander in chief of the British Crown Forces at a lavish banquet. Some of those military forces raided homes in the North Belfast area in November 2013 in conjunction with the RUC/PSNI. In the Brompton Park area a family including an 18 year old girl were assaulted and had their home wrecked. Why no concern of political policing then? Or is it normal for NATO troops to accompany police in their work?

David Forde, justice minister at Stormont speaking on RTE on the day of Adams release heaped praise on the RUC. Forde as part of his contention that there never had been political policing expressed the opinion that generous redundancy packages as part of the repackaging of the RUC, were a reflection of the “good and fine service individuals gave to the RUC”. No mention of the families of the victims of this force. Who is going to hold “the dark side” accountable?

We should not lose focus of the nature of the RUC/PSNI. The US Congressional International Relations Committee issued a report in1999 on hearings the body had held into the RUC.

Congressman Chris Smith noted:
One recurring theme of all our witnesses is the inescapable conclusion that the police force in the north of Ireland, the RUC has been at the core of the human rights abuses and civil unrest that has plagued Northern Ireland for the last 30 years, perhaps even longer.

Ben Gilman, Chairperson of the Committee, stated:
the historic anti- catholic/nationalist ethos of the current policing in the north of Ireland must be totally eradicated. A new police force must be strictly impartial, truly representative of the whole community and fully accountable to all its citizens.

A cover letter accompanying the report was signed by the then Speaker of the House Denis Hastert and then Democratic leader Dick Gephardt.

Just days before Mr Adams was arrested, a court in the six counties found that the RUC/PSNI illegally facilitated un-notified and violent Loyalist protests as part of the Union flag dispute. A lone resident from the Short Strand was left to shine the light, none of the fir nor mna an phobail saw fit to do so.

Towards the end of Mary Lou Mc Donalds interview on Newstalk referred to above, she made the comment “ I have no problem with the RUC interviewing people about the killing of Jean Mc Conville” she added 'My concern is the timing of the RUC actions.'

The host of the show interjected “the PSNI”. Mary Lou paused a couple of seconds, and continued. Is Mary Lou a “Disso” ?

We need a new political process, the GFA has become farcical. In the meantime we need to stand up to bullies and support the McIntyre family.

14 comments :

frankie said...

David,

I hope you don't mind but I've just copied your excellent piece onto PSf's FB page.

Hopefully it'll ring truths in some of their ears..

Why did I do it.. Simple, they (PSF refuse to talk to me)..So, I decided on my own, fcuk them. I'll make sure they hear an alternative message and let them see what other people think about the mess they (PSF) signed up to..

Mac Tíre said...

David you wrote,

"So Adams don’t dare to throw up a smoke screen of reference to peoples genuine fears of a return to conflict to avoid politically engaging with the likes of Anthony McIntyre."

So you believe that Gerry Adams should be engaging with Anthony McIntyre?

I only ask because I was under the impression from Ed Moloney and others on this site that Anthony McIntyre was an impartial academic with no ax to grind with Gerry Adams?

larry hughes said...

It is all enough to make you dizzy trying to keep up with SF chasing its own tail. Mackers has been consistent in a non violent stance whilst not going down the road of black is white if SF say so as a 'tactic'. Personally I have come to the conclusion that his speaking out against the murder of Joe O'Connor actually prevented the Provos murdering more people in the name of 'peace'. It is as if Adams and Co. are behaving like Dev in the 40s only not to secure the Free State but to convince the British they are worthy of their jobs at Stormont.

If you stop looking at SF for a wee while you get your balance back!!

5a568038-da27-11e3-830d-3bfefb04c5d2 said...

Having recently found this site I would like to say its very refreshing to see that there are voices here , within republicanism, who make total sense to me. I can empathise totally with a lot of the content here, and I was on the British side of our conflict. I don't expect to be cut much quarter in this company, nor do I want to offend anyone. I can accept there were many wrongs on both sides during our conflict, but you guys were sold down the river by Adams and Marty, as much as we were by Blair. The unique difference is that I would trust the views expressed here more than I would those of the SF machine!

I would never want to go back to the old days, but until we have real truth from both sides the SF/DUP charade will continue to keep truth from families who more than deserve that courtesy!

Whilst we may have been in opposite corners of the political ring, I respect what is written here and also the comments, its the closet we have been to some form of truth in 17 years!

Henry JoY said...

Welcome 5a56.........

"Irishness is not primarily a question of birth or blood or language; it is the condition of being involved in the Irish situation, and usually of being mauled by it."

Conor Cruise O'Brien

Owen Sullivan said...

Nuff said well said!

DaithiD said...

5a568038...., your style and content of writing reminds me of 'Martin Ingram'.

larry hughes said...

5a568038-da27-11e3-830d-3bfefb04c5d2

Trying to figure out if your ID is a result of security consciousness from working at Bletchley Park or if you slipped and fell on the computer keyboard.

You are of course correct about the SF/DUP charade. Jobs for the boys all round. Or as one on my lecturers at University plainly put it regarding SF 'strategy';

"The gravy train was leaving and they wanted to be on it".

I have no doubt you will be welcome on here and even if we get a bit irate the odd time it always blows over pretty quick. Looking forward to hearing what you have to contribute.

Niall said...

nothing new....we're seem to excel at bitter and acrimonious name calling....

mirror, mirror, on the wall, who is the greatest Republican of them all?

There's a very big elephant in the room and no-one has even come close to mentioning it yet.

frankie said...

Nial,


There's a very big elephant in the room and no-one has even come close to mentioning it yet.


Thats the second time today on this site I've seen that expression on TPQ. First was in the Tim Pat piece Ed & Anthony both flagged. Tim Pat thinks ' The elephants in the room during the debacle of Gerry Adams’ arrest are the dissident Republicans and their Unionist opposite numbers who oppose the process.

What is your elephant in the room Nial and whats the buring question that hasn't been asked? The first time I heard the expression 'The elephant in the room' was when this was first aired.

5a568038-da27-11e3-830d-3bfefb04c5d2 said...

I reopened this thread with a sense of misplaced dread tonight, fully expected to be rounded on. But fair play to you all here and thank you for the welcome! I guess that people with real republican beliefs and values can at least give air space to people like me, as I said that in itself is refreshing!

To respond to the questions posed, I will say this I am first and foremost Irish, I hold both passports and have no problem with being classified as irish, we all are, like it or not.

No idea who Martin Ingham is to be fair, but I am not him..

"I believe that many Unionists/Loyalists realise now that they will get a more genuine and meaningful interaction from some characterised “dissidents” than they will from “process” parties."

I think this line from the above article is as solid an observation as I have seen in many years!


My ID is a result of signing in with AIM, any suggestions on an alternative is welcome as I have no issues with ID's or security.

Thank you again for the acceptance and hopefully I can continue to enjoy and contribute to the page.

Tain Bo said...

5a568038-da27-11e3-830d-3bfefb04c5d2,

Welcome to the quill, I am not being funny but noticed your moniker and decided to call you “Crypto” not in the secret sense but pure laziness of reading your moniker.

grouch said...

niall, i cant make my mind up who is the greatest republican of them all - gerry or marty. marty or gerry.....mmmm.....mmmmmmm...marty. no gerry. definitely gerry. i mean he suffered up in antrim cop shop for the cause like no other.

Tain Bo said...

Niall,

perhaps we should refer to people as assigned numbers? Any suggestions on how we discuss events or issues without mentioning names?