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Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The ends justify the mean

The problem when you adopt ends justify the means politics is that at some point you get found out. The lesson to learn from the recent examination of dirty British tactics used to fight counter insurgency programs against the IRA reminds us that there are no winners when conflict becomes the norm and becoming involved in such violence will always compromise your moral authority. Dialogue, not military action is still the best way to work through issues, something President Bush refuses to acknowledge.

Northern Irish police colluded with killers - report
BELFAST - Top officers in Northern Ireland's police force allowed Protestant paramilitary informers to carry out murders for more than a decade, a report by the British-ruled province's police ombudsman said today. The report comes as nationalist party Sinn Fein prepares for a Jan. 28 conference to decide whether to back a reformed policing and justice system -- a key condition for restoration of a Protestant-Catholic power-sharing assembly. The three-year inquiry found that Special Branch officers turned a blind eye to the criminal activities of a unit of the outlawed Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) in order to protect "agents" within its ranks. Between 1991 and 2003 members of the Belfast-based UVF gang killed 10 people, including a Presbyterian minister and a Roman Catholic taxi driver, and were linked to a catalogue of other crimes including shootings, drug dealing and extortion. At the same time police officers paid retainers to those suspected of the crimes, "babysat" them in interviews to ensure they did not incriminate themselves and destroyed evidence. "It would be easy to blame the junior officers' conduct," Ombudsman Nuala O'Loan said in a statement. "However, they could not have operated as they did without the knowledge and support at the highest levels of the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) and the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI)."

The PSNI replaced the RUC in 2001 as part of policing reforms under a 1998 peace deal to end 30 years of bloodshed between majority Protestants who want to retain links with Britain and a Catholic minority in favour of a united Ireland. The Protestant-dominated force was dogged by allegations of collusion with paramilitaries throughout the conflict, accusations that have been highlighted in several previous reports and that extended to the British security service, MI5. O'Loan has sent a file to PSNI Chief Constable Hugh Orde naming senior Special Branch officers and their UVF informers but prosecutors have indicated charges will not be brought. Missing documents had prevented officers being held to account, according to the report which began as an inquiry into the 1997 murder of 22-year-old Protestant Raymond McCord. PSNI chief Orde, who took up his post in mid-2002, said the report made "shocking, disturbing and uncomfortable reading" and apologised to the families of those affected. Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern said the findings were of "the utmost gravity" and that he would be discussing them further with British counterpart Tony Blair. A spokesman for Blair said the events were a matter for profound regret "and the prime minister shares that regret".


At 24/1/07 6:29 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Dialogue, not military action is still the best way to work through issues, something President Bush refuses to acknowledge."

Dialogue? That's funny! History does not support your statement Bomber. Do you still smoke pot on a daily basis? Their must be a reason for these irrational conclusions.

At 24/1/07 6:41 pm, Blogger bomber said...

Dude - perhaps you need to take a toke, that's a very angry post, did you smash up the 'Give Peace a Chance' poster as well?

History shows us that military force can't solve everything, and the very fact the IRA are now involved within the system shows that there is hope - the fact you can't even acknowledge that point in your rush to suggest I smoke pot and that must be the reason why I would say dialogue not military action was preferable. How petty are you, I suggest peace, you cry ‘drug user’ – dude, you’re more in need of the bong than I am.

At 24/1/07 8:18 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a relatively uninformed outsider, my first impression is:

If the IRA can take the high ground on this, they will improve their image and make a mark towards improving their place in history.

At 27/1/07 2:29 pm, Blogger bomber said...

That shut anon number 1 up didn't it?

At 27/1/07 9:04 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Either that or they can't be fucked trying to change your ignorance Boomer.


At 31/1/07 7:14 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"History shows us that military force can't solve everything, and the very fact the IRA are now involved within the system shows that there is hope"


This is the same IRA that instigated a terror campaign across Northern Ireland and England?
The same IRA that murdered innocents and almost assassinated the British Prime Minister?
The same IRA the forced the British Government to the table by using violence?

Jesus you are niave bomber.
Better example would have been Gandhi.

At 1/2/07 4:37 pm, Blogger bomber said...

Anon - you are completly right, the IRA did all those things, but then again, there is the whole issue of Justification - the British shouldn't be in Ireland, it's not 'theirs' - the same way Iraq isn't America's or the way the West Bank isn't Israel's and people will resist occupation (as is their right) - I believe Nelson Mandela summed it up best, "The Oppressor dictates the nature of the struggle"

At 1/2/07 5:22 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I prefer;

An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.

(attributed) M. K. Gandhi.


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