It looks like today could deliver a truly historical event with the IRA releasing a statement which will see the organisation end all activities. The release of Sean Kelly last night along with Martin McGuinness saying only a few hours ago that “in a few hours it will be the dawning of a bright new day in Ireland” after he had arrived in the US to brief Bush’s envy. McGuinness has a press conference scheduled for noon (5pm Irish time) by which time it is expected the IRA will have released it’s statement.
I know no matter what the statement says there will be many here who will dismiss it, but I truly believe that this will be a momentous historical event which will see an end to the armed struggle and a final move to democratic politics.
DUP have already dismissed it.
TBH anything other then a complete disbandment is not going to cut it.
Will be intresting to see how Bush spins it as something he helped bring about.
I wonder if I shoudl start a book on how long it takes before there is an article in the media / here about something which contradicts "all activities" and we'll have to listen to yet another round of explanations as to why the particular activity in question wasn't actually covered.
F'r example...will recruitment, weapons-acquisition and information-acquisition count as activities? Will members meeting and/or discussing the future of the IRA qualify as an activity?
Or will it just be a "we'll stop beating up people and robbing banks" sort of "all activity"?
OK - I'm jumping the gun. I know I am. But I'm putting my marker down now and saynig I am pessimistic and believe that whatever statement is issued will not be a clear, unequivocable statement saying that the IRA will cease to exist in any active form.
I think statements on their own have long-established to be worthless. If what the IRA promise sounds worthwhile, then it will still be discounted until they show they're living up to their words. Whether you like it or not, the IRA does not have what you might consider to be the trust of the people.
The crunch is finding out if they have the cojones to live up to their words (whatever those words may be) in the face of such skepticism.
I hope you're right, but I believe that if you consider teh statement to be historical before waiting to find out how its played out in practice, then you really haven't been looking at whats been happening over the last 20 years and more, except perhaps through rose-tinted glasses.
TBH anything other then a complete disbandment is not going to cut it.[./quote]
Indeed. One has to ask what the purpose of a complete cessation of all activities would be if not to sort-of-disband only without actually disbanding.
Which then begs teh question...why not disband...
...but hey...jumping the gun again. Maybe they'll announce disbandment, hand over all weapons and proceeds to mediators, and just disappear.
Bonkey I am more than aware of was had happened over the past 20 years, I didn't say I know it will be historical, I said I truly believe it will be and I do, I think all the signs are there that this will be a final move.
I agree with you that the real test is what happens in the coming months, i.e. if they will follow through with their word and end all activities and decomission all weapons.
IMO "all activities" is just that, everything must stop, obviously the group of people will still excist and they will have commemorations but all activites must cease to excist. I think Bertie said something along those lines lately.
there is a rumour going around that the governments have already seen the statement so it'll be interesting to see what it says.
After listening to that fella from the Sunday Indo on the last word telling us that carrickmore has lots of houses with jacuzzis (no idea what carrickmore he means but its certainly not the tyrone one he was reffering to) and basically talking a lot (and i mean a lot) of rubbish, i dont think the Indo reading public will be too interested in the statement - well yer man certainly sounded like he had dismissed it already
At this point in time, I think the IRA know that they will be wasting their time if they do not issue a statement that ends all contentious, criminal, paramilitary, violent and intimidatory activity. They will also know that to be effective it will need to be backed up by actions, and it will need time to be verified and believed by the unionists.
The big question will be how far they / Sinn Fein go on policing. That is likely to be the last stumbling block to a return to Stromont and (relatively) normal politics in the North. I have a feeling the Sinn Fein will hold off on this one to negotiate before resuming Stormont.
It may not be a bad strategy - leave something substantial for the Unionists to complain about, rather than having them moan about insubstantial issues such as meeting, associating, commemorating, etc which, imho can be justified as reasonable in the context of an overall standing-down of their other activities.
the policing issue will have to be dealt with eventually so the sooner the better imho
I agree, but I still can't see the IRA / SF "give it all away" today.
I think quite a substantial portion of people feel somewhat similar. It'll be interesting to see what comes about.
BBC News: "IRA statement will challenge republicans and nationalists - Gerry Adams. More soon."
Exactly, either that or they have another ship load of m16s coming in
My worry is that Nationalist areas will be left unprotected from Loyalist attacks which have increased in the last month or two,and what happens if other Republican groups increase their attacks on security forces, will the IRA get the blame.
the loyalists are too busy fighting over drug turf to be bothering nationalists at the moment.
It will be interesting to see, no doubt they wont want to give Big Ian and Co the idea they have surrendered....
From breaking news.ie: