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Operation BANNER to end after 38 years

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posted on Jul, 26 2007 @ 02:39 AM

The Armed Forces are to end their longest running military operation, Op BANNER, in Northern Ireland on 31 July 2007.

From 1 August 2007, the Northern Ireland garrison will contain just 5,000 troops who are trained and ready for deployment worldwide.

Then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Peter Hain MP, announced a normalisation programme on 1 August 2005 signalling that the security situation had improved. Widespread, routine military support to the police in Northern Ireland would no longer be needed and military presence there has been consistently reduced.

Its over - british military units will finally leave NI after 38 years - after first going in to support the catholic population events transpired against them and some poor policy decisions - well we all know what happened.

posted on Jul, 26 2007 @ 02:55 AM

The British government suitably aided by the British Armed Forces, had so many sucesses against PIRA, INLA and the IPLO, not forgetting the Loyalist (?) loonies, that they were all forced round the negotiating table.

The Northern Ireland Agreement - seen by many to be a sell out to Sinn Fein/IRA, is now in effect and I think that the troubled people of Northern Ireland will, at long last, start to live together in peace.

posted on Jul, 26 2007 @ 03:19 PM
There was an excellent article written by Tom Friend of ESPN the Magazine, about two Irishmen, a catholic and a protestant, Dave Cullen and Trevor Ringland who are using Basketball as a means of breaking down the sectarian barriers before they are established in Children. The organization they are with is called Peace Players, and these two men were both awarded the Arthur Ashe Courage award at the ESPY's this year. I couldn't find the original ESPN article but I did find another piece about them. Great story, both men are from the sectarian and violent pasts, yet they are working together to end all that.

Dave Cullen and Trevor Ringland

posted on Jul, 27 2007 @ 01:51 PM
Just a bit of a reminder about those who paid the ultimate price

Roll of Honour

Plenty of us old and bold gave quite a chunk of our lives to Op BANNER. I personally joined the part-time UDR in 1990, 2 years before it became the Royal Irish Regiment in 1992. I spent 5 years part time and 3 years full time in the home service before transferring to the General service batallion in 1999. Since then I have carried out further operational tours of the Provence in various duties.

A couple of weeks before I passed out as a fresh-faced 18 year old Private, a 36 year old part timer (Olven Kilpatrick) was shot dead in Co. Tyrone in the shop that they worked in. About a month later another, Thomas Jamison, was killed in Tyrone while driving a lorry as part of their civillian job. In that year a total of 8 UDR soldiers were killed, virtually all while off-duty. A similar number were murdered the next year. A total of 200 UDR and Royal Irish Regiment Home-Service soldiers died during Op BANNER, 192 at the hands of Republican murderers.

They shall not grow old as we who are left grow old.
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,

posted on Jul, 27 2007 @ 06:02 PM
Great news, especially for the UK and RoI.

The long trek to peace and normalisation continues - I hope we've passed the point of no return by now (I sincerely doubt whether the people who live in Northern Ireland will tolerate conflict anymore given the remarkable transformation their lives have taken for the better since the 1990s) and all parties stick to the agreements set out. As PaddyInf points out, so many have given their lives in Northern Ireland. For their sake if no one else's, a lasting peace is essential.

posted on Jul, 31 2007 @ 01:49 AM
welll its been a long road - but tommorrow is the day , there must be some sad moments and yet happy ones now.

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