Originally posted by speight89
I am just going to discuss why Northern Ireland has not been declared a fre state as the British Government don't really care about us, especially
- I don't think that is a fair or accurate view.
I'd probably agree much more with this view if you were talking about previous UK governments.
In fact as far as many of those old governments was concerned it was their obvious policy of simply ignoring NI which was what IMO gave rise to the
disgrace that was the old sectarian unionist state here.
this particular British gov/cabinet/ PM has probably invested more time and effort into reaching an equitable 'solution' as all the
others put together.
One could say that there is effectively a system of undeclared 'joint authority' in place now given the high level of cooperation between the UK and
RoI (Republic of Ireland) governments.
Until we have a border poll (and this time one all will engage with and not boycott like the last) we do not and will not know what the split is for
or against the maintenance of the Union or pro or anti a United Ireland.
Polling in elections and the census suggest there is still a majority for the Union but demographics suggest this is set to change in the not too
(there are larger numbers of younger nationalist/republicans compared to an aging unionist/loyalist population)
But certainly the newly unveiled system of local government that has been just been announced would indicate the UK gov is happy and prepared to see
the 'green' part of NI assert much greater and increasing control over itself, with or without an operating Assembly.
1. Why did the British allow the Protestants allow to bring in guns, but not Catholics?
- Historically I suppose the obvious and simplistic answer was that the protestant/unionist/loyalists were seen as supportive of the state rather
than trying to destabilise and subvert the state.
The contrary view was held of nationalists and republicans.
But even that is not quite so black and white.
The British did stop arms shipments from each side on occasion and I do not think they were happy to just stand by and see large quantities of arms
flowing in here.
I also think it is a mistake to believe the British were always aware of everything the unionists/loyalists were up to.
There always was a marked distrust between the British gov and those groups.
Carson & Co.'s original act of bringing in arms to resist the then UK government's policy of 'Home Rule' was after all an act of treason.
In any case whereas once they may well have seen each other as 'being on the same side' I very much doubt that is still the case now.
(as this autumns' recent disturbances and shooting at the British army and the PSNI - the name of local Police now - by loyalists would indicate;
you'll also find the unionist politicians furious at the recently announced local government plans )
2. Why did the British allow the British Army to shoot and kill many un-armed innocent Catholics in Derry?
- Personally I don't think they did.
I think the British army went to Derry very wound up and determined to teach 'PIRA' a lesson.
I think they were, by then, naturally inclined to believe the nonsense they were told by the more vehement local unionists (which at one time
practically amounted to claiming that 'every young able bodied RC man is an IRA man') and once the shooting started it got totally out of hand,
people panicked making the situation worse and we ended up with the tragic horrifying disgrace that was 'Bloody Sunday'.
The British government then later acted to 'whitewash' the whole thing (as did the army embarrassed by the scale of panic and what everyone had just
seen had just gone on on the streets of Britain)
that is not the same thing IMO as sanctioning, ordering or "allowing" the events to happen.
3. Why did the British Government allow the killingof innocent Catholics by Protestant Paramilitiries (UDA, UFF, LVF)
- Again I'm not sure that is completely accurate or it was that simple.
I think it is probably more accurate to say that certain British governments cared to know about what was happening more or less than others (and the
same happened on 'the other side' with Irish governments at times).
Once the 'war' got going again and bombs started going off in England (again) I suppose it was inevitable that questionable and/or underhand means
were used against the IRA.
(who after all described it as a 'war' themselves)
It is my view that, unquestionably, certain elements within the army and within NI and the old RUC (the old name for the Police here in NI) and
special branch particularly came to regard either 'the loyalist groups' or individuals within them as useful 'irregulars' who could go and do the
murderous 'black ops' jobs that they legally couldn't.
I am in no way attempting to 'justify' any of this.
I suppose all one can say is that it was tragically inevitable that innocent Catholics died at their hands; just as innocent protestants died at
republicans' hands, just as innocents always get killed, in numbers, in every war.
4. Why did the British Government detest the idea about the IRA getting Catholic's our human rights and give the British a taste of their own
- I disagree that "the IRA got RC's in NI their human/equal rights".
But I suppose that is debatable depending on your point of view but it is fair comment that they (the IRA) denied the human rights of many here and
I think proper inclusive negotiation like the British government genuinely and increasingly talking to nationalist and republican politicians and
representatives from the start of the 1970's onward), 'Direct Rule' itself - treating NI like the rest of the UK put a degree of 'normality' into
our government and removed the previous entirely sectarian basis of the old devolved government here, the involvement of the government of the RoI
along with Europe and the ECHR had a hell of a lot more to do with it.
I'm glad to think everyone has equal rights in NI now and where that is not reflected in actuality on the ground efforts are being made to redress
(fair employment legislation and the 50/50 recruitment for the cops are a prime examples).
5. Why does the British Government always lie when talking about Northern Ireland?
- I don't think they do "always lie".
I think they have a point of view like everyone else and at times that is, perfectly naturally, a different view to those others may or may not
Like it or not they are part of things in NI and will be for a while yet.
Given their responsibility for and to us all they are surely entitled to have a view on matters just like everyone else?
They always say that they want peace and are working toward it! To get the real answer ask any resident of Northern Ireland, and they will
tell you otherwise!
- Well I am from NI and I think they want peace and I think they are working towards it.
I think anyone who has even half a clue about how things were here (and not that long ago either) would have major trouble trying to seriously deny
the enormous advances that have been made.
In fact it would be a ridiculous proposition.
I think this government has made huge strides towards involving and giving genuine account to all
the voices in NI.
Even 'membership' of the UK itself is now - unlike anywhere else within the UK - wholly dependant (as agreed under an international treaty) on the
people of NI wanting things to be that way.
When a majority here want a United Ireland it will happen (subject to the arrangements the Irish government makes......won't that be a little
Frankly I think this a matter of when and not if.
In the meantime I think we suffer having (mainly) 2 bands of nutcases on either extreme who don't want 'normal democratic progress' and who are
doing their best to block progress.
I think there are far more people interested in moving towards 'normality' than not.
The republican dissidents are small, are supposedly thoroughly 'penetrated' by the security forces north and south and thankfully are totally
unrepresentative having very little support in the nationalist and republican community.
The DUP end of unionism is sadly much larger but for all that largely ineffectual.
They can drag their feet and say 'no' all they like but the UK government is (together with the Irish gov and the US gov) pushing things along with
or without them.
The door is always open for them to engage (which is how it should be) but the days of the 'protestant state for a protestant people'
long over and never to return.
Sinn Fein is in and out of Downing Street and having a serious and substantial input into policy acted out in NI.
That isn't going to change.
Republicans have their proper voice in the governance of NI, but you have to accept and remember that theirs is not the only voice.
Now what do you think about this?
- You have a view you are entitled to, I don't always agree but at least we are able to debate these things like reasonable people.
[edit on 2-12-2005 by sminkeypinkey]