THURSDAY, BLOODY THURSDAY
PUT ON YER EMERALD IRONY GLASSES, KIDS
Sinn Fein Leaders Say Irish Republican Army Should Apologize For Bombings
Well, it's ironic, of course, because the Brits have never apologized for any of the FAR worse things they've done. And, because some of the guys urging the apologies are themselves implicated. And, because, ultimately, it was the only bombings in England that brought the English to the negotiating table, after a thousand years of slaughter by them in Ireland.
And, because that table is empty now, thanks to the Brits and their Proddy surrogates in Belfast and Derry. And because, well, irony, that's our thing, we Irish. There's nothing a little irony can't make a little worse. See?
Still, the killing of innocent civilians is always an horrendous act. Horrendously stupid, too, politically. The British public might well be mostly on their side, if the IRA had confined their attacks to military, special police, Loyalist paramilitaries, and economic targets in Northern Ireland. Bombings in Dublin cost the IRA a lot of support in the Republic, back in the 70s.
The bombings of places like pubs in the English heartland surely set the Cause back many years. It was only the less-violent bombings, later, in the City of London's financial heart, and at Heathrow airport; smaller attacks that demonstrated the vulnerability of the English economy, that finally got Downing Street to talk about a united Ireland.
The ultimate irony is that, in exchange for serious negotiations, the IRA have given up on violence, and decommissioned their weapons. There hasn't been an incident since the talks began, in 1994, except for a couple of tiny individual Republican splinter groups, not part of the IRA, and some Loyalist paramilitary groups, who are not even being asked to disarm.
Ironically, the same Ulster Loyalists and Unionists who bleat about having the IRA turn in all of its weapons before any settlement is reached have no problem with their own kind still bearing arms, and continuing to use them on innocent Catholics and Protestants alike. And these terrorists have penetrated the Royal Ulster Constabulary, although these talks were supposed to change that, and clean out the NI police. They haven't.
So, yeah, it's ironic that the IRA should apologize. But then, they've taken the initiative all along: They kicked the English out of the South in the Teens and Twenties of the last century, and they started the movement for civil rights in the North in the 1960s. They've held on to a vision of one, free, united Ireland through thick and thin, for nearly a hundred years. And, when it comes, in another hundred years, they will be the ones who made it happen.
It took a lot of doing for the IRA to put down their arms, to come out of the shadows, to negotiate with an ancient, and vicious enemy. But they did all that. So, why not start the apologizing, even if the peace is not yet won? Why not be the bigger men, and women, even if they haven't got a country to call their own? Why not enjoy the irony? Slainte!
IRA should apologise for pub bombings: Sinn Fein
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