The would-be “Hammer of the Gael”, Margaret Hilda Thatcher, has been laid to rest and still the revelations about her true nature come tumbling out through the British media blizzard of obfuscation and adulation. I already highlighted her preferred “solution to the Irish problem” – a little bit of 17th century ethnic cleansing updated for the 20th century. Fortunately for the people of Ireland she didn’t get her way, talked out of her blood lust by shocked colleagues in government and worried officials. However the next best thing was the death squads of the British terrorist gangs and their military allies let loose upon the people of Ireland. And boy did she love them. The ones out of uniform: the UDA, UFF, UVF, RHC, UR. And the ones in uniform: the RUC, UDR, FRU, SAS, BA. All the anodyne acronyms of British terror in Ireland.
Even out of office she could not stop herself counselling those who succeeded her on the evils of the perfidious Irish. Including those who were nominally her political enemies (though at least they weren’t Irish, hey, Maggie?). From the New Statesman and the Irish Times newspaper:
“Former Northern Ireland secretary Peter Mandelson said today the only thing Margaret Thatcher ever told him was that the Irish were “all liars” and not to be trusted.
He revealed the 1999 exchange as he explained why he did not want to attend the former prime minister’s funeral service.
“Although I helped to organise the Labour Party’s opposition to her policies throughout the 1980s, I only ever met her once. It was the day I was appointed Northern Ireland secretary and our paths crossed,” he said.
“She came up to me and she said, ‘I’ve got one thing to say to you, my boy … you can’t trust the Irish, they are all liars’, she said, ‘liars, and that’s what you have to remember, so just don’t forget it…””
However, on Black Mountain in County Antrim, it is the Irish who are passing judgement on the former British prime minister and writing her epitaph for the world.
- What Thatcher told Mandelson: “You cannot trust the Irish. They are all liars.” (newstatesman.com)
- Thatcher: ‘The Irish are all liars’ (irishtimes.com)
- Thatcher to Mandelson: ‘You can’t trust the Irish, they are all liars’ (belfasttelegraph.co.uk)
- Margaret Thatcher funeral: ‘You can’t trust the Irish, they’re all liars’ – Iron Lady’s bizarre rant to Lord Mandelson (mirror.co.uk)
During the thirty years of our so-called troubles, the U.D.R. “that notorious British Militia” were responsible for 8 deaths, during the same time span the Provisional I.R.A. were responsible for 1,768 deaths, of which 206 were members of the U.D.R. . Just thought I’d add a bit of perspective.
The statistics are derived from “Lost Lives : The stories of the men, women and children who died as a result of the Northern Ireland troubles” by David McKittrick, Seamus Kelters, Brian Feeney, Chris Thornton and David McVea.
Thanks for the Comment but I believe this article is rather more relevant as to the nature and function of the UDR:
“The award-winning investigative website, The Detail, carries a lengthy report on British terrorism in Ireland, focusing on the activities of the Ulster Defence Regiment (UDR). Established in January 1970 as an infantry unit of the British Army the UDR acted as an armed militia of the British Unionist minority in Ireland until it was partially disbanded in 1992 through an amalgamation with another unit forming the new Royal Irish Regiment or RIR (this has been widely interpreted in retrospect as one of the reconciliatory gestures on behalf of the British government towards Irish nationalists and republicans in the lead-up to the Peace Process of the 1990s).
Amongst the finer points is the following:
Among the more shocking revelations are the links between the British Army and the notorious British terrorist gang ‘the Shankill Butchers‘:
Among the many innocent Irish citizens murdered in the most grotesque ways possible by the gang was 33 year old Rosaleen O’Kane, as described in this BBC report:
This is not the first time that the close links between the British state and British terrorism in Ireland have been examined. In fact it has been one of the constants of the Northern conflict, though rarely have the British or Irish media establishments given acts of state-sponsored terrorism by Britain the prominence they deserved. The fact that it took a Belfast-based journalism site to highlight these latest revelations, revelations ignored by the news media of two nations, shows yet again how little has changed – in peace or war.”
Of course the UDR (along with the RUC) was the respectable face of British terrorism in Ireland.
Using the casualty lists from CAIN’s Index of Deaths from the Conflict in Ireland:
Deaths caused by the British Forces:
03.5% British Forces
Deaths caused by the British Terrorists:
9% British Terrorists
4% Republican Forces
1.3% British Forces
Deaths caused by Republican Forces:
52% British Forces
00.4% the Irish security forces
“Afghanistan is under occupation. If my country was occupied I would join the guerrillas and fight for its liberation.” Margaret Thatcher to Gorbachev.