Monday, 4 April 2011

No return to Omerta

Northern Ireland knew sectarian discrimination long after both the Britain and Ireland woke up to the bitterness of taste discrimination; even when it was unlawful to refuse to employ persons on the grounds of race in Britain, it was still 'necessary' to allow Harland & Wolff to refuse to employ a single Catholic at their shipyards. And sectarian policing in the province was not just a matter of discrimination intended to keep the Catholics in poverty - it was a matter of life and death. Extra-judicial murder by the old RUC, and in particular by the 'B' Specials, is ingrained in Catholic folklore, whilst the murder of RUC constables is equally ingrained in Protestant myth. 

The formation of the PSNI was a brave and necessary step, and that 30% of the force are now Catholic is testament to a growing 'ownership' of the force on both sides of the sectarian divide. With greater penetration into the Catholic community comes enhanced intelligence about the crime and racketeering gangs that disguise their evil under the badge of republicanism. They are not terrorists, they are scum, no different to the mafia. The murder of Constable Ronan Kerr is no different to the murder of Giovanni Falcone. No Catholic in the province should feel any sectarian loyalty that would hinder them from helping to bring these killers to justice. 


Anonymous said...

I wish I could agree with your conclusion but I fear that it will take several generations for it to come true, if at all.

I went to an English Catholic boarding school where we excelled at rugby. One year we hosted a team from Northern Ireland and we put them up in our guest house.

The morning after they arrived, one of us went to wake them up for breakfast. The usual drill was to open the room door and call out the time to let them know how long they had to get ready. Only, they had all barricaded themselves in.

The reason? They were from a Protestant school and they thought that we would beat them up during the night.

We actually wanted to have a good game of rugby and then sneak off to the pub with them.

One of my teachers served as a platoon commander in NI. One day, patrolling past a church, one of his men hit a tripwire that ran from a lampost (where the bomb was concealed) to the church railings.

The soldier was mortally wounded. The priest walked past him without a glance to check up on the old lady across the road. He then walked back past the (now dead) soldier. He must have seen the bomb planted. He must have known it was there, yet he said and did nothing.

I cannot begin to describe the sense of revulsion that I felt and still feel.

Recently I was training colleagues from Northern Ireland and their attitude towards Catholics was casually negative. Everything revolved around "Dirty Protests."

I come from a Scottish highlands/Manx Irish family. I understand the tribal nature of us Celts. Religion is just another excuse for a good fight with the neighbours.

No matter what the authorities try in NI, someone, somewhere will get in the way.

greg tingey said...

What did you expect from religion?
Any religion?
Peace and love?
Do grow up, please!

Edward Spalton said...

It seems that, in the more innocent but less politically correct days of the early Sixties, Flanders & Swan got it right In their song, "The English"

"The Irishman now our contempt is beneath.
He sleeps in his boots and he lies through his teeth.
He blows up policemen, or so I have heard,
And blames it on Cromwell and William the Third.

The English are moral, the English are good
And clever and modest and misunderstood"

Unionists, with whom I am in touch, have as perfect a hatred for protestant paramilitaries as they do for IRA/Sinn Fein. They do not believe that the present "settlement" can last. As they say "Would you put up with a system that always gave you the same government and never any opposition"?

Tired said...

Pretty obvious where your sympathies are after reading these two paragraphs of propaganda Raedwald. Catholic terrorists murder another innocent of their own and you turn it into a trip down never-was lane. You've exposed yourself nicely.