Current Affairs Politics

Lies, Damned Lies And The War In Ireland

Journalist Martina Devlin sets the readership of the Irish Independent (and others) fairly hopping with outrage over her latest opinion piece. Can she be long for the Indo Group? One suspects not. In Ireland’s news media élite being More-British-Than-The-British is considered de rigueur. But it’s fun while it lasts:

“It’s the blatant revisionism that gets my goat: the deception being peddled that the IRA was solely responsible for the Troubles and therefore culpable for all the evils of the Northern state.

According to this false gospel, the IRA initiated the violence and continued it alone. Sooner or later those nice unionists would have realised it was wrong to deny equality to their fellow citizens, and knuckled down to cut a deal with the SDLP. But the IRA’s self-serving agenda derailed the potential for agreement to be reached, delaying the formation of a just society.

Herman Melville’s novel ‘White-Jacket’ contains the following passage: “You are the moderate man, the invaluable understrapper [underling] of the wicked man. You, the moderate man, may be used for wrong but are useless for right.” Melville was suggesting that moderates allow iniquity to be perpetuated because they do not challenge the status quo, and never support what is sometimes necessary to expunge tyranny — such as the tyranny of the Northern state, where ethnic cleansing lite was tolerated and citizens were denied fundamental human rights. There is more than one kind of violence.

This acceptance by revisionists of subjugation in the North allows them to claim it was wrong to resist the status quo, except peacefully. Conveniently, they forget how the agents of the state used rifles and batons to force civil rights campaigners off the streets. They ignore statistics showing how one sector of Northern society was favoured for jobs and housing at the expense of another. Left to them, the Northern state would have stayed gerrymandered, defective, deviant.

Politicians in the Republic countenanced gross inequalities in the state on their doorstep, perpetuated against people who defined themselves as Irish. Few commentators or voters called them on it. Yes, IRA violence was remorseless, but what caused it — and, more important, who helped bring it to an end? As history books about this period are written, whose names figure on their pages?

My final thought on the North is this: peace-makers are thin on the ground compared with bomb-makers.”

Just for the record, and to meet head-on the propagators of counter-factual myths that pass for history in the Anglomedia ranks, some salient facts.

The so-called “Troubles” did not begin at the end of 1969 with the formation of the Provisional Irish Republican Army, or in the early months of 1970 with the first attacks by PIRA units (the first British soldier was not killed until 1971!). In fact the conflict had been going on for several years previous to this (the Provisional IRA came into existence on the 28th of December 1969. The day before on the 27th the UVF carried out a bomb attack in Dublin city!).

The first violence, the first killings, the first shootings, the first bombings of the Troubles began in 1966. Over a period of several months terrorists from the British separatist minority in Ireland, the UVF, murdered three people, two Roman Catholic men and a Protestant woman, as well as injuring a number of others and causing substantial damage to property. The objective was simple, something they made clear in a statement issued to the general public:

“From this day, we declare war against the Irish Republican Army and its splinter groups. Known IRA men will be executed mercilessly and without hesitation. Less extreme measures will be taken against anyone sheltering or helping them, but if they persist in giving them aid, then more extreme methods will be adopted… we solemnly warn the authorities to make no more speeches of appeasement. We are heavily armed Protestants dedicated to this cause.”

And the cause? Killing Irish men, women and children, and driving those who survived from the last remnants of Britain’s colony in Ireland. This is the start of the Troubles. The British ethnic minority in Ireland using violence and the threat of violence to intimidate and terrorise the majority population on the island. As it was throughout the last 300 years.

The Facts of the Troubles the Media don’t want you to know:

The first shooting of civilian targets in the “Troubles”? British terrorists, 1966.

The first bombing of civilian targets in the “Troubles? British terrorists, 1968.

The first ethnic cleansing of civilian targets in the “Troubles”? British terrorists, 1969.

The first killing of a paramilitary police officer in the “Troubles”? British terrorists, 1969.

The first bombing of a capital city in the “Troubles”? British terrorists, 1969.

The first armed action of the Provisional IRA in the “Troubles”? 1970

The first killing of a British soldier in the “Troubles”? 1971

Do we need to go on?

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