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PUP's Ervine has died in hospital

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posted on Jan, 9 2007 @ 07:46 AM

Progressive Unionist Party leader David Ervine has died in the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast.

Mr Ervine, 53, was taken to hospital after suffering a heart attack at his home on Sunday. He later had a stroke and a brain haemorrhage.

Mr Ervine, a former UVF prisoner, was a key figure in brokering the loyalist paramilitary ceasefire of 1994.

In a statement on Monday afternoon, his family said he had "passed away quietly with peace and dignity".

Please visit the link provided for the complete story.

What ever your view is regarding the divide in Northern Ireland, this man played a huge part in bringing peace. He went against the loaylist and supported the Good Friday Agreement, brought about a loyalist ceasfire and tried hard and hard to turn the society away from conflict and voilence.

David Ervine July 21, 1953 - January 8, 2007

posted on Jan, 9 2007 @ 08:55 AM
You're right infinite, David Ervine was indeed a very important figure in the peace and political processes here.

He had a terrible personal past but it is clear that he genuinely wanted to put that behind him and help create a better place here for us all.
I reckon he'll be missed.

But you're a little 'off beam' when it comes to what he went against.

Ervine and the PUP (as well as Gary McMichael & the old UDP) went against the 'No' Paisley-ite rejectionist wing of unionism.

It was thanks to the efforts of Ervine (and his ex-MLA partner from the PUP, Billy Hutchinson as well as UDP people like McMichael.......such a pity, what might have been for them - and the rest of us - had the UDA behaved and tuned in to the peace process sooner) that working class loyalism ended up finally getting the nerve to tell Paisley where to get off.

These were the people who considered themselves to have been the ones to have done the actual suffering 'on the front line' of the 'war' whilst people like Paisley spent years stirring and inciting from the 'comfort' of a pulpit or safe areas.

It's not for nothing that many in loyalist areas call Paisley 'the Grand old Duke of York'
(forever marching 'the people' up to the top of the hill with his extreme rabble-rousing and winding people up with tall tales of imminent doom only to march them back down again.......with 'the people' doing all the suffering).

That's how come on the night, just hours before the GFA was being finally agreed, PUP & UDP supporters were at Stormont passionately barracking and wrecking a Paisley press-conference where he went to do his usual tirades against the agreement (it was quite a sight at the time and a humiliating public experience for Paisley and people like Peter Robinson who was also there......perhaps that is the start of 'pistol Pete's' pragmatism some think they now detect?).

Thurs, April 9 1999
Ian Paisley was heckled by PUP and UDP talks delegates as he held a midnight DUP press conference after leading 200 supporters to CarsonÕs statue in the grounds of Stormont.

It's thanks to people like Ervine that we now are on the verge of the final irony of NI, as we await Paisley finally agreeing to power-share with Sinn Fein (a party he had once pledged to 'smash').

[edit on 9-1-2007 by sminkeypinkey]

posted on Jan, 9 2007 @ 11:48 AM
I'm sure you're right Sminkey, he will be missed.

From an English perspective it has certainly always appeared one of the great ironies of the GFA and recent NI politics in general that it was the political representatives of the more extreme loyalist groups, Ervine and McMichael in particular, who were both able and willing to adopt a remarkably pragmatic stance in respect of the peace process which Paisley could never bring himself to accept.

This, I think, took considerable vision and not a little courage given the opposition they faced from some of their own camp as well as the Republican movement, particularly as they could not expect to enjoy the security benefits that the mainstream Unionists counted on.

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