SENSELESS ULSTER ATTACKS MAKE SENSE FOR SOME
KILLINGS DO NOTHING FOR NATIONALIST IRISH REPUBLICANS
US DEPARTMENT OF STATE
"Remarks With Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams"
Gerry & Hilly, together at last.
US DEPARTMENT OF STATE
"Northern Ireland First Minister, Deputy First Minister"
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Northern Ireland First Minister Peter Robinson & Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness.
Only Radical Loyalist Pro-British Unionists & Revanchist British Army Spooks Could Imagine Benefiting From A Breakdown Of The Successful Peace Process
With any crime, the first question you have to ask is "who benefits?" With politically-motivated crimes and terrorist acts, the answers should be obvious. Who has suffered the most damage? Who stands to gain from renewed tension between Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland? Who will benefit if violence replaces negotiations? Who would win if the current Belfast government failed, and direct rule by London were reinstituted?
Three people were killed in the North of Ireland this month. Two British soldiers and one Ulster policeman were ruthlessly gunned down after being lured into vulnerable situations. The attacks were executed with a precision previously unseen in the alleged attackers. The groups claiming responsibility were described as "splinter Republican factions." The so-called "Real IRA" and "Continuity IRA," numbering in the dozens, are groups with no connection to the legitimate Republican Nationalist movement for a united Ireland. They are criminals and psychopaths who violently oppose the will of the vast majority of both Catholics and Protestants in the province, and the accomplishments of the Republican-Unionist power-sharing government. More importantly, they are known to be bumbling idiots who have never successfully carried out operations of this sort before.
The obvious question is, did they really do these murders? Are they just trying to boost their profile by pretending to have carried out something that was actually done by someone else? Or have they been set up to take the fall? How is it possible to verify statements coming from a dissident non-faction of a movement that has moved on? In short, who the Hell are these people? If anyone knew, at this point, surely they would have all been rounded up. If no one knows, then we really have a mystery on our hands.
There is no mystery as to the intended result of these attacks. Somebody wants the devolved Provincial government to fail. Even the "hard men" of the actual Irish Republican Army have laid down their arms and joined with former Protestant terrorists in the long and arduous rebuilding of the North, beginning with a ceasefire and resulting in a semi-autonomous local government in Belfast today. Although the Protestant Unionists and Loyalists still hold a numerical edge in the Province and in the government, it is generally believed and put out by all sides that Nationalist Catholic Republicans will outnumber them eventually. All they have to do is wait for their majority, and their inevitable victory in a vote to pull the North out of the United Kingdom and reunite with the South, the Republic of Ireland. That is the real reason that even so rabid an anti-Catholic bigot as Ian Paisley was willing to sit at the negotiating table with Sinn Fein, the reputed "political wing" of the IRA: Unionist numbers would soon be slipping, and this was their last best chance to negotiate from strength. Otherwise, they were looking at eventual isolation and loss of power, or an endless nightmare of violent religious apartheid. Even nuts like Paisley chose sanity.
But the fact is, they were simply delaying the inevitable reunification of the Six Counties of Ulster with the rest of Ireland under a Republican flag, and dissolution of the union with England. To many Loyalists, such an eventuality is unacceptable. They have only gone along with the peace process in order to put off the day when they become Irish citizens, and not British subjects. Having done all they could legally, the only other option conceivable to them might be violence. And they have a long history of such violence, with British Army help.
Of course, if Ulster Loyalists or British Special Ops were behind these murders, they cannot take credit, or allow themselves to be blamed for violent efforts to destabilize the coalition government. From their point of view, the best way to hurt the still-fragile coalition would be to commit or instigate an act of violence against one of their own. They couldn't be blamed, but they could certainly use it to stir up trouble. The proof of this pudding would be in their actions over the next few weeks and months. If you see rabble-rousing among the Orangemen, and subsequent revenge attacks in green areas, with calls for British intervention and suspension of the power-sharing agreement, then you will know cui bono. In the meantime, anyone who commits such outrages is working for the British, not the Irish, in effect; no matter what they may claim.
Ironically, if radical Loyalist elements were found to be behind these attacks, or behind the alleged IRA "splinter-groups" continued existence, that might cause even more harm to the peace process than if illegitimate nut-job "Republicans" had actually done the murders. It is up to those in the know among all Parties to expose and repudiate any remaining violent elements on the fringes and those who are way outside the legitimate circles of their followers, especially English army soldiers. Otherwise, no one will ever know whom to trust. In the meantime, the gerrymandered Irish Nationalist Republican Catholic "minority" will have to wait for history to swing their way, and the British Loyalist & Unionist Protestant "majority" will have to learn to accept that swing.
THE IRISH INDEPENDENT
"Policeman murdered in new dissident outrage"
Hm. Curiouser & curiouser. Who has the access necessary to carry out active timely surveillance right on a British Army base? "Dissident Republicans"? Is British Army security so bad, or was it not Republicans after all?
' The attack had a level of planning which indicates that surveillance had almost certainly been carried out on the base, so that the gunmen were able to lie in wait for the delivery van. No particularly notorious republican activists are known to live in its vicinity, so the search for the killers will spread to other parts of the North. '
ENGLISH AL-JAZEERA NEWS SERVICE
"Arrests made over N Ireland attack"
The gang that couldn't shoot straight suddenly become expert shooters & planners? Hm.
' Eamon Malley, a journalist and author based in Belfast, told Al Jazeera that questions will rise over the expert nature of the attacks. "These [dissident groups] are people who have habitually bungled every operation in which they've been involved," he said. "Now, these are two very ruthlessly efficient operations, carried out with considerable skill and cunning. "Now why now have they acquired this expertise, particularly in one weekend?" '
"Arrest as North Ireland faces 'abyss' after new killing"
Spin & counter-spin. And even a few salient facts!
' The soldiers were the first killed in Northern Ireland for 12 years, while Carroll was the first policeman killed since the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) succeeded the Royal Ulster Constabulary in 2001. Reacting to the new shooting, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown vowed that Northern Ireland would not see a return of the so-called Troubles, which killed over 3,500 people until the landmark 1998 Good Friday agreement. "There will be no return to the old days," he said. Political leaders vowed that the violence would not prevent Catholics and Protestants from sharing power, as they have done since 2007. Northern Ireland's First Minister Peter Robinson said he was "sickened," while his deputy Martin McGuinness issued a strongly-worded condemnation, after his Sinn Fein party was criticised for being slow to condemn the first attack. "These people are traitors to the island of Ireland, they have betrayed the political desires, hopes and aspirations of all of the people who live on this island," he said. "They don't deserve to be supported by anyone." '
"Northern Ireland killings raise fears on power sharing"
The headline is the spin. The reality is in the interviews, below.
' With three members of the security forces killed within a period of less than 48 hours, there were fears that the fragile peace that culminated with the establishment of a power-sharing government in May 2007 might be at risk. The reaction in Craigavon, on one of the main roads from Belfast to the border with the Irish republic, suggested that for now, at least, those concerns might be overdrawn. The town, in the county of Armagh, a major sectarian battlefield in the past, has a broadly mixed population of Catholics and Protestants, but people approached at random at the site of the shooting and in local shopping malls seemed confident that the peace would survive the shootings. A 25-year-old Catholic man who gave his name only as William said he supported Sinn Fein, the main nationalist party in the power-sharing government, and that he "feared something like this was going to happen" when IRA sentiment split over the peace agreement. "There is still a small minority out there who agree with shootings and all that," he said. "I don't agree with it myself. There was a time when I may have agreed with it. But it is the wrong time. Violence is in the past." Harold Davidson, 65, a retired farmer and supporter of the Democratic Unionist Party, Sinn Fein's main partner in the Belfast government, said he was surprised by the shootings because he believed there was "definitely no support" within the Catholic nationalist community for a return to political violence. "I do not think it will escalate. There is too big a majority who do not want anything to do with it. And there is no support for it," he said. As for the partnership in Belfast, he said it would survive. "They are working together now like they should have been doing years ago," he said. '
"Fanatics’ deadly game in the fractured remnants of the IRA"
' It is fractured, disparate, confused, and even within the splinter Real and Continuity IRAs there are splits. The intelligence assessment is that the bulk of their leaderships are based across the border. But it is here in Northern Ireland that there is a very specific security focus at present. How, after months and years of failure, have these splinter republican groups managed to carry out the killings of recent days? How did they get in under the radar? In all of the assessments that are going on at present those are just two of the questions, and part of the investigation will also be a close examination of the claims that have emerged since the weekend. Who is masterminding the killing? Who is doing their dirty work? And why are these attacks taking place now? '
"Northern Ireland: A history of the Troubles"
A very brief history of only the most recent "Troubles."
' 1985 - Anglo-Irish Agreement introduced giving Dublin some say in Ulster affairs.
1987 - Seizure of a vital arms shipment a major blow to IRA "Tet Offensive" to attack and overrun British bases and shoot down helicopters.
11 civilians killed in Remembrance Day bombing in Enniskillen.
1993 - Downing Street Declaration agrees to the principle that people of Northern Ireland can determine their own future.
Warrington bomb kills two young boys including Tim Parry, 12. Ten civilians killed in Shankill Road bombing.
1994 IRA ceasefire declared with Sinn Fein entering the peace process. Behind the scenes peace talks had been ongoing since early 80s.
1996 US Senator George Mitchell introduces negotiations on IRA disarmament. Talks stall, violence resumes with Canary Wharf bombing.
1997 Tony Blair introduces resumption of peace talks on condition of IRA ceasefire. In Feb Stephen Restorick is last soldier to be killed until Sat March 7 2009.
1998 Good Friday Agreement signed after torturous negotiations. Principle that Ireland can become one country only with the consent of people. Multi-party assembly at Stormont. Agreement introduced by overwhelming majority in a referendum.
Aug - Real IRA kill 29 civilians in Omagh Bombing
2000 Northern Ireland Assembly suspended over IRA failure to decommission.
Real IRA fire rocket-propelled grenade at MI6 headquarters.
2002 Stormont suspended again over allegation of IRA spy ring
2005 Provisional IRA claims it has ended the armed struggle and decommissioned its arsenal.
2007 Assembly reintroduced with Ian Paisley and Martin McGuinness, hardliners from extremes of Unionism and Republicanism, respectively becoming First Minister and Deputy First Minister. '
"Gerry Adams: British Army Special Forces in Northern Ireland threaten peace process"
Brits may have provoked attacks.
' Sir Hugh Orde, chief constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland earlier this year asked for the Special Reconnaissance Regiment of the British Army to be deployed in the province, running covert observation missions against dissident Republicans. The use of Special Forces would be "a return to the bad practices of the past," Mr Adams said in Washington, where he was visiting for American St Patrick's Day celebrations. It would be "wrong," he said. "It would also sideline the peace process and political leaders," he added. Mr Adams said that he had spoken to Gordon Brown and told the Prime Minister that last week's murders should be "a police matter with civilian oversight" and not investigated by "faceless, anonymous groups" like the SRR. He added: "It is a matter for the PSNI. Sinn Féin has been robust in calling for people to cooperate with the PSNI. Any attempt to bring in outside forces and unaccountable groups just plays into the hands of the dissidents." Mr Adams also called the IRA splinter groups a "very, very small group of people" who lacked popular support. "Everyone has a responsibility to defend the peace. There can be no going back, there is no turning back. The only way to go is forward." '
"Special Reconnaissance Regiment"
Also known as "The Queen's Own Assassins."
' The Special Reconnaissance Regiment (SRR) is a Special Forces regiment of the British Armed Forces, which conducts special reconnaissance, predominantly, but not exclusively, in a Counter-Terrorism posture. It was established on 6 April 2005 at RMA Sandhurst and is a component of United Kingdom Special Forces (UKSF) alongside the Special Air Service (SAS) and Special Boat Service (SBS), supported by the Special Forces Support Group (SFSG). It is the newest Special Forces regiment in the armed forces, announced by the then Secretary of State for Defence Geoff Hoon in 2004. The regiment was formed around a core of already existing assets, thought to be the Joint Communications Unit (Northern Ireland) (JCU(NI)), known in popular culture as 14 Intelligence Company, which played a similar role against Irish republican and loyalist terrorism in Northern Ireland since the 1970s. '
"14 Intelligence Company"
Once a Proddy terrorist, always a Proddy terrorist.
' 14 Intelligence Company is alleged to have been an element of the British Army Intelligence Corps which operated in Northern Ireland from the 1970s onwards. The unit conducted undercover surveillance operations against suspected members of Irish republican and loyalist paramilitary groups. Allegations of collusion with loyalist organisations were made against the unit. 14 Int was accused of acting in collusion with loyalist paramilitaries by former intelligence personnel Fred Holroyd and Colin Wallace around the death of senior Provisional Irish Republican Army member Francis Green, the Miami Showband killings and the Dublin and Monaghan Bombings. '
"Jean Charles de Menezes"
Who was that masked man? --Sorry, that's classified.
' Jean Charles de Menezes (7 January 1978 – 22 July 2005) was a Brazilian national shot dead by police at Stockwell tube station in London, England. He was shot in the head at close range by Metropolitan Police ("The Met") who misidentified him as a suicide bomber about to explode a device on the London Underground. Within hours police discovered that he was not involved in any terrorist act, but was actually an innocent victim. Immediate and later accounts of what happened on the day of the shooting published in the press contradicted each other, specifically on the manner and clothing of de Menezes as he entered the station, and the presence of police warnings before firing. The shooting sparked public debate over an apparent change in police policy, in which a shoot to kill practice known as Operation Kratos had been introduced to deal with terrorist threats. Involvement of special forces: Several commentators suggested that special forces may have been involved in the shooting. Professor Michael Clarke, Professor of Defence Studies at King's College London, went as far as to say that unless there had been a major change in policy it was likely that it was not the police who had carried out the shooting, but special forces: "To have bullets pumped into him like this suggests quite a lot about him and what the authorities, whoever they are, assumed about him. The fact that he was shot in this way strongly suggests that it was someone the authorities knew and suspected he was carrying explosives on him. […] You don't shoot somebody five times if you think you might have made a mistake and may be able to arrest him. […] Even Special Branch and SO19 are not trained to do this sort of thing. It's plausible that they were special forces or elements of special forces." Later, on 4 August 2005, The Guardian reported that the newly created Special Reconnaissance Regiment (SRR), a special forces unit specialising in covert surveillance, were involved in the operation that led to the shooting. The anonymous Whitehall sources who provided the story stressed that the SRR were involved only in intelligence-gathering, and that Menezes was shot by armed police not by members of the SRR or other soldiers. Defence sources would not comment on speculation that SRR soldiers were among the plainclothes officers who followed Menezes on to the No. 2 bus. On 21 August, the Sunday Herald reported that SRR men are believed to have been in the tube train when the shooting occurred. Stockwell One states, of the SO12 surveillance teams: (p.28) 'During July 2005 each surveillance team had a member of the military attached to them. Those soldiers were unarmed.' '
"Miami Showband killings"
Some of the Specials early work.
' The Miami Showband killings (also known as the Miami Showband Massacre) occurred on 31 July 1975 around 2.30 AM near Newry, in South Armagh, Northern Ireland when The Miami Showband musical group, one of Ireland's most popular cabaret bands of the 1970s, comprising both Catholic and Protestant members, were travelling home to Dublin after a gig at the Castle Ballroom in Banbridge, County Down. The vehicle they were travelling in stopped at a roadblock after being flagged down by men in British Army uniforms at Buskhill. During the Troubles it was a common occurrence to be stopped by the British Army on the roads. The unsuspecting members of the band were taken out of the minibus, and told to line up in a ditch by the side of the road. Some of the men at the checkpoint were British soldiers, from the Ulster Defence Regiment. However, they were also members of an illegal paramilitary organisation, the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF). Out of sight of the band members, one UVF member attempted to plant and hide a bomb in the minibus, with a plan that the bomb would blow up en route to the band's destination in the Republic of Ireland, killing all on board. Had all gone according to plan, the Unionist forces would have been able to advance the proposition that the band were acting as bomb-smuggling couriers for the Irish Republican Army.[original research?] Whilst the bomb was being loaded into the back of the minibus, it exploded prematurely, killing Harris Boyle and Wesley Somerville instantly. Boyle and Somerville were members of the UDR as well as holding the rank of major and lieutenant, respectively, in the UVF. After the explosion, the remaining UVF members opened fire on the dazed band members. Three of the musicians were killed: lead singer Fran O’Toole, guitarist Tony Geraghty, and trumpeter Brian McCoy. Bassist Stephen Travers, aged 24, of Carrick-on-Suir, Co. Tipperary, was gravely wounded by a dum-dum bullet and barely survived his injuries. Saxophone player Des McAlea (aka "Des Lee") was blown over into a ditch by the force of the explosion and not seriously injured and thus was able to alert authorities after the assassins had fled. Ray Millar, the band's drummer, was not travelling in the minibus at the time of the attack, as he had elected to go straight to his home town in Antrim to spend the night with his parents. Brian McCoy was the first to die, having been machine- gunned down on the spot, receiving nine rounds in the back. Fran O'Toole was shot twenty-two times in the face, while Tony Geraghty was shot four times in the back, despite having cried and pleaded for his life. Persistent allegations were made after the attack by former serving MI6 agent, Captain Fred Holroyd, and others, who stated that British Army officer and member of 14 Intelligence Company, Captain Robert Nairac, organised the attack in cooperation with the UVF. Surviving band members echoed this allegation: "Surviving Miami Showband members Stephen Travers and Des McAlea testified in court that an Army officer with a crisp English accent oversaw the Miami attack", the implication being that this was Nairac. '.
Labels: 14 Intelligence Company, Craigavon, IRA, Loyalists, Massereene Barracks, Nationalists, Northern Ireland, Protestant paramilitaries, Sinn Fein, Special Reconnaissance Regiment, Ulster Unionists, UVF
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