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T O P I C
Silly Season Comes to N.Ireland
July 11th 2000, 00:19 CEST by Darkseid-D

Some of you may know about the situation in Northern Ireland. Or at least, you may think you do, judging by what CNN and the global news networks put out, you may be surprised.



A little background for you on how Northern Ireland is laid out. Six counties, Fermanagh, Armagh, Tyrone, LondonDerry, Antrim, Down. Ironically, the most northerly part of Ireland is in the South. Think about it, itll make sense. Theres a very strong religious devide here, with 65% of Protestant denomination and around 35% Roman Catholic.

Well, July is silly season, when the Orange Order has several marches across the province. The biggest allegedly commemorates the Battle of the Boyne in 1690, where King William (Of Orange, Dutch) defeated the fenian forces lead by King James, driving them back across the river Boyne. King William (king Billy to the prods...) kicked the Papal blessed taigs ass and won is the commonly held belief. This march, takes place on the 12th, and the 11th night is a scene for bonfires and revelry(bit like Guy Fawkes November 5th).

Now, its celebtrated by the Protestant / Unionist side of the population. The Roman Catholic / Republican side of the population, quite understandably doesnt like this very much. In many areas theyve, quite rightly, had marches stopped or re routed. The N.I. Parades commission was set up a few years back to rule on what marches could proceed, and/or what changes had to happen. Sadly, to keep one side happy, they upset the other side.

The biggest clusterF**K of them all, is the Garvaghy Road route, near Portadown in County Armagh. Portadown is a small town, only a few thousand residents and would lean toward a protestant demographic. The Garvaghy Presbyterian church lies down a short country road, which passes through a nationalist group of houses. Armagh is a strongly Catholic county, truth be known. Its proximity with the border to Eire, lead to it being referred to as Bandit country. This is because the various republican movements would commit terrorist atrocities and vanish back across the border to safety.

Lance Corporal Stephen Restorick was on traffic detail in Armagh when he was shot in the back and killed by a republican terrorist using a Barret light 50. To date, there have been no prosecutions brought on this case. Armagh was for many a no go area, the British soldiers being air dropped by helicopter, due to the frequency of bomb attacks and ambushes. In short, Armagh was a focal point of the troubles outside of Belfast.

The 'residents', including a Sinn Fein councillor Bredan auMclaunoigh (who moved to live there right when the trouble started) dont want the Orange parade to happen. Reasonably they see the Orange parade as a blatant attack on their history and culture. The Orange Order wants to march down that road to the church, as they have done for 50+ years. The current dispute over this route has been going on since 1996, would you believe there are _still_ protestors camped there.

The army is on the road in force, barb wire, barricades and checkpoints are in place. Folks, we got away from this being the norm, we're sliding back toward it. There has been rioting in the past around this route, dozens of rioters, police and soliders have been injured, some quite seriously. Orange marches have approached this area, but been halted and turned back, usually to ugly scuffles.

Now, heres whats really pissed me off. Theres been sporadic rioting in Unionist and Nationalist(republican) areas over the last week. Mainly its just your common garden thugs using the marching ban as an excuse. People are being carjacked, robbed and their cars burned. The police are being shot at, petrol bombed, stoned and having live fireworks thrown at them. Its a miracle no ones been killed (yet). Bleeding heart liberals are condemning the police for using water cannons and tear gas. Shit folks, the police are human, doing an impossible jobs and theyre being shot at for heavens sake.

Major roads are being blocked off, with burning barricades, damaging the road surface. I travel these roads, I get delayed, I spend more time in the car than I need to , I get pissed off. People cant go about their normal every day lives. The service industry cant make a living, Taxi's are too scared to run, they cant afford to be burnt out. A local computer retailer had 150k of stock go up in smoke when rioters hijacked their lorry and used it to barricade an area of west Belfast.

But, here comes the real piece de le resistance. The Orange order has called for protests, province wide 4pm -8pm tonight. Guess what, this means most major roads will be closed off in and around Belfast. I _have_ to go through Belfast to get home, there are no alternate routes I can take (gotta love living on the Ards peninsula). This means I either stay in work til 8pm (more likely I wont get home) or I go early.

I was raised in the protestant faith, but Im not a member of the Orange Order. I dont believe in that sort of bigotry and hatred. This may surprise you, but the commonly held beliefs in N.I are wrong. William of Orange was raised RC, lead an army mainly comprised of RC Dutch mercenaries and had Papal blessing. There was a portrait of William receiving papal blessing hung in Stormont (N.I parliament buildings) up until 1962, when it mysteriously vanished. The Reverend Ian Paisley (Democratic Unionist Party) denys there ever being such a painting, despite photographic evidence of him standing beside it.

So, there you have it, this whole mess is about petty hatreds and bigotry. Hatreds and bigotry based on lies and mis information. Hatreds and bigotries that carry on because thats what they've always done. I wont pretend to have the answers to the solution, Im not sure there is a nice easy to package one. I know that most of the population is sick and tired of the whole mess. Most of us want to live in peace, but its the vocal minority screwing things up. We seem to have a culture akin to English Soccer hooliganism. Violence and hatred for its own sake, justified by culture and history.

So there you have it folks, a cut down version of events going on in N.Ireland at the moment. It may be biased, due to my own background, but to be honest, Im sick to the eye teeth of all the bullshit.

Is it any wonder I want to emigrate?

C O M M E N T S
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#1 by "PainKilleR-[CE]"
2000-07-11 00:22:53
painkiller@planetfortress.com http://www.planetfortress.com/tftech/
first? ;
#2 by "PainKilleR-[CE]"
2000-07-11 00:23:26
painkiller@planetfortress.com http://www.planetfortress.com/tftech/
sorry, had to be done, now I'll read the thing when I get home.

-PainKilleR-[CE]
#3 by "Rantage"
2000-07-11 00:38:44
rantage@hotmail.com http://www.steelmaelstrom.org
You know, I don't know a damn thing about Northern Ireland...but I like this topic so much better.  Why?

Andy's not authoring it.

No offense Andy, but you've been hogging the PC soapbox a lot lately....and the resulting comments in the thread are becoming more anti-Andy than anything else.  Let some of the other kids play. :)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#4 by "BloodKnight"
2000-07-11 00:38:54
bloodknight@somethingawful.com
DAMN YOU!!
#5 by "Brandon 'GreenMarine' Reinhart"
2000-07-11 00:54:44
brandonr@3drealms.com http://www.3drealms.com
The Northern Ireland conflict isn't going to be resolved any time soon and I think that it'll probably only get really, really bad before something happens...but even then...

Look at Palastine and Arab-Isreali relations.  A conflict that is something like three thousand years old.

I only see one article on CNN.com about the Belfast demonstrations.  For the most part, people here aren't really concerned with the situation in Ireland.  The headlining article right now is about Barak vowing peace and security at Camp David.  That's a complete joke and everyone knows it because Barak's government is falling apart.  

The bottom line is that the United States sees peace processes as political tools.  The Middle East is always an immidiate concern primarily because of oil flow, which we need to survive.  Sometimes I wonder if the Middle Eastern conflicts aren't actually beneficial to the US.  If they stay in turmoil, fighting each other, they never gain the advantage of a unified perspective...they never really are able to take advantage of the power they have.
#6 by "Sgt Hulka"
2000-07-11 01:25:25
sgt_hulka@yahoo.com http://www.hulka.com
I've got to agree with Brandon on that one. The United States sees peace processes as political tools.  Look at what Clinton is doing right now with Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak & Palestinian President Yasser Arafat.  Total political move, Clinton is more interested in building a legacy other than, "That depends on what your definition of is, "is""..  That's his motivation, not peace.  I don't think you can legislate peace, you've got to change people hearts, and that's harder to do than writing a document that states, "you boys play nice now okay".

I think my grandfather said it best when at age eleven he told me, "Fucking A, drink the punch, it's good for you"..  He never told me there was booze in it, but man did me and my brothers suck that shit up! My family is from Ireland, many moons ago, my grandmothers side.  Her name was Betty McDermott, can't get much more Irish than that.
#7 by "Desiato"
2000-07-11 02:18:15
desiato_hotblack@hotmail.com http://www.spew2.com/
I'm sorry -- but arguments based in religon rarely make much sense to me. Is everyone so *driven* to be an asshole that they can't coexist? I guess not.

*blech*

What ever happened to living up to the ideals of what religon supposedly stood for? (At least on a basic level.) Treating your fellow man in an equitable manner, etc...

Perhaps religon is a fine concept, until you involve people. *snicker*

I can't blame religon completely though -- give people enough of a chance, and they will take sides on anything. It could just be the fact of where they are from, or how a certain regions dialect sounds, etc.. Mankind in general has great capacity towards intolerance based on the most idiotic things.


Desiato
#8 by "Andrew Stine"
2000-07-11 02:42:06
linguica@doomworld.com http://www.doomworld.com
Quote of the nanosecond:
"."
- Karl Palutke, in Web site licenses? Hah - they're already here!
#9 by "BarneyQue"
2000-07-11 02:48:32
BarneyQue@hotmail.com http://N/A
Just wanted to say here, that although I'm much too ignorant to make a decent contribution to this thread, it's a good read.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#10 by "Rambar"
2000-07-11 02:51:35
There are only two thing to do.  Save your money and leave.  It's a total fucking hellhole and it's not changing any time soon.  Just leave the whole mess behind you and go somewhere were they aren't trying to genocide each other every few months.  Places like that are getting rarer everyday but there's not much you can do.  The only real solution on a personal level is for you to leave.

If you want to exercise your other option and stay well then its going to be tough.  There's two ways to get the conflict to end.  The first is to have one side win totally and completely.  That's probably not all that appealing to you though.  Your other option is to rise up against the two main protagonists here.  It's probably similiar to fighting the mob in an area where they have a lot of control.  Most people want peace but they don't understand that giving into one side or just standing by does not promote peace.  The cops are probably scared themselves or just as hateful.  If you can get a large number of people in just one city to tell these people to go straight to hell and not collect $200 and then actually follow through on that no matter the cost it will go away.  It won't be easy though.

These peoples main goal is power.  This kind of feud is just a quick means to power.  The people at the top echelons of these organizations may really hate the other side but their main goal is power and power alone.  The more you let them control your life (like when you can leave work) the less chance of peace you'll actually have.

OTOH I live in America and unless there's some really kick ass game deveopers working there well lets just drop a nuke on it and stop it like that :)
#11 by "RahvinTaka"
2000-07-11 02:52:50
donaldp@mad.scientist.com
<b>#9</b> "BarneyQue" wrote...
<QUOTE>

Just wanted to say here, that although I'm much too ignorant to make a decent contribution to this thread, it's a good read.</QUOTE>
yup.
(BTW in case you didn't notice this is one of those irritating "me-too" posts)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#12 by "Karl Palutke"
2000-07-11 03:00:45
palutkek@asme.org
<quote>Quote of the nanosecond:
"."
- Karl Palutke, in Web site licenses? Hah - they're already here! </quote>

Quite possibly the most insightful thing I've ever said on PC.
#13 by "Emjoi Gently"
2000-07-11 03:03:15
(An opinion from someone who's never experienced this kind of madness, and lives a long long way from it)

If you are brought up being told "Those bastards are evil" by all those around you, then that's what you are going to believe.  And probably believe for the rest of your life.  Doesn't matter what politicians in England, Ireland or the USA say or do.  You'll still hate the bloody catholics/protestants.  It's built into your character.

The only way it'll get healed is by the old Haters dying off, and the young ones hating a little bit less.  A long slow process.
#14 by "Vengeance[CoD]"
2000-07-11 03:13:01
rhiggi@home.com
<b>#3</b> "Rantage" wrote...
<QUOTE>

You know, I don't know a damn thing about Northern Ireland...but I like this topic so much better. Why?

Andy's not authoring it.

No offense Andy, but you've been hogging the PC soapbox a lot lately....and the resulting comments in the thread are becoming more anti-Andy than anything else. Let some of the other kids play. :)</QUOTE>

So with a topic "Andy free" you still feel the need to stir up exactly the thing you claim bothers you.  You're trying to start another "lets gang up on Andy" thread.  bah.

Ireland:
Its hard for me to believe the situation in Ireland.  Not that I think anyones lieing, just that its so different here in the US.  We have so many different religions and ethnicities, its almost trivial.  The people here are just as stupid, they just find other issues to be stupid about.  It doesn't matter where you go.  Just when when you think people couldn't get any more stupid, God/nature/whatever.. makes a better idiot.  It all comes down to power, as has already been said.  They want control.  Thats why wars are fought.  Give someone with no sense of self a cause to fight for and they will latch on it like a leach.  The "good fight" becomes all there is and they can't let go even if/when they win.  The rest just use it as an excuse to go on a rampage.  It happens here too, in LA for instance.  They looted and burned for the same reasons, they just won't tell you that when a TV crue is around.

I feel for you, its too bad there isn't much we can do about it.

V<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#15 by "JeffD"
2000-07-11 03:15:47
jefdaley@microsoft.com
<b>#5</b> "Brandon 'GreenMarine' Reinhart" wrote...
<QUOTE>Sometimes I wonder if the Middle Eastern conflicts aren't actually beneficial to
the US. If they stay in turmoil, fighting each other, they never gain the
advantage of a unified perspective...they never really are able to take
advantage of the power they have. </QUOTE>

Little too much Deus Ex there?  =)  We all know it's the Illuminati who are making sure things stay nasty over in the Middle East.  

=JD<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#16 by "Brandon 'GreenMarine' Reinhart"
2000-07-11 04:28:08
brandonr@3drealms.com http://www.3drealms.com
JeffD, if you don't think the US military, CIA, and FBI consider options like that you've got another thing coming.
#17 by "Talion"
2000-07-11 04:49:03
talion6@hotmail.com
<b>#16</b> "Brandon 'GreenMarine' Reinhart" wrote...
<QUOTE>

JeffD, if you don't think the US military, CIA, and FBI consider options like that you've got another thing coming. </QUOTE>

Yes, no doubt we'd have peace in the Middle East right now but for the meddling of the US government.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#18 by "Belzebutt"
2000-07-11 06:58:55
awz@home.com
<quote>The bottom line is that the United States sees peace processes as political tools. </quote>

You may call me naive, but if you look at previous US administrations, Clinton is a god-send for middle-east peace. None of the previous US presidents has done anything even remotely close to this. All of them supported Israel unilaterally and only now, Clinton has the guts to stand up to a certain large lobby in the US and actually take a fairly impartial side (of course they still give much more money to Israel than to Palestine).

Hey, nobody likes Clinton and he lies and all that, but he's a major step in the right direction. There are other, easier things he could be doing if he just wanted to get votes. I support this peace process thing, and even if the two sides can't agree at least the US will have given it a good shot...
#19 by "Flamethrower"
2000-07-11 07:04:17
blah http://blah
On Gibraltar some members of an IRA team were setting up a huge car-bomb. The SAS intercepted them, the IRA bombers looked at them the wrong way and - that's enough - the SAS dropped them all using the method they'er taught (fire first, fire accurately, empty all your ammo in the direction of the target). One SAS man put 16 rounds into an IRA bod.

On the front-cover of Private Eye magazine was a picture of some SAS operatives in black-combat dress, one asks another

"Why did you shoot him sixteen times"?
The chap answers: "I ran out of bullets".


==================================

Current NI reality is: the IRA get away with murder, Prodestants don't even get away with walking.
#20 by "Ian"
2000-07-11 07:35:09
terrencelaukkanen@hotmail.com
I think the problem that you mentioned (Most people don't know what is really going on) is due to the fact that from the outside, the difference between the Irish and the English is negligible. I mean, they sound a like to me. And is Catholicism really that different from Protestantism (aside from that whole 'Pope' thing)? They're both mostly caucasian. The same thing happens when Americans look at the Middle East: "Hey, they all wear turbans and have oil, can't they all just get along?" However, when you live right next to somebody, all the tiny, little, seemingly insignificant differences are magnafied until you can't imagine empathizing with your "enemy". Ask a Canadian what they think of Americans, and you'll almost invariably get the answer "Redneck, ignorant, gun-toting idiots". Of course, ask an American what they think of Canada and they'll say "Canada, huh? The name sounds familiar, I just can't quite place it...". To outsiders (ie, Europeans, Asians, etc.) however, the difference between the two is so small Canada might as well be the 51st state. This concept, for some reason, is so offensive to Canadians that they magnify tiny differences (such as differing measuring systems {Backwater American loonies still using "English" system}, "zed" not "zee" as the Molson ad says, Prime Minister, Hockey {not really Canadian anymore}, etc.) to say, <i>"Oh no. We're not like those bastard ignorant Americans! DIE AMERICA DIE!"</i>

#18

Shhhhh... don't compliment Clinton while Hulka is in hearing distance if you value your life.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#21 by "Ian"
2000-07-11 07:39:01
terrencelaukkanen@hotmail.com
BTW, I could start a whole thread on the seriously flawed nature of Canadian democracy (Lends itself to totalitarianism far to easy), but no one would care outside of Canada. However, if I'm guessing correctly about Canada being wannabe Britain, the same problems exist over there too. And probably in Australia as well.

PS, note to all my Australian friends: <b>BEWARE THE COOLING VENTS AT THE 2000 OLYMPICS: THEY'RE FILLED WITH DEADLY POISON!</b><I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#22 by "Andy"
2000-07-11 07:49:23
andy@planetcrap.com
<a href="http://news6.thdo.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/events/northern%5Fireland/history/">This might be of interest.</a>

It's probably fair to say that Northern Ireland is one of the subjects that everybody knows about vaguely, but few people understand. I'm one of the shameful ignorants, and starting with Darkseid's excellent post, I intend that to change.


Flamey: The IRA unit was unarmed. Your thoughts?
#23 by "Belzebutt"
2000-07-11 07:50:09
awz@home.com
#20: Canada a wannabe Britain? Judging by the recent UN rankings, I think it's the other way around :)

You hit it right on the spot with the "hate your neighbour" thing. Same thing happens in the Balkans.


#19:
<quote>Current NI reality is: the IRA get away with murder, Prodestants don't even get away with walking. </quote>

There's a hidden meaning in that sentence:
IRA / Protestants
instead of
Catholics / Protestants

Hence, either you're trying to equate IRA with Catholics, or you're trying to show how "nice" Orangemen are by contrasting them with a terrorist group. Neither is fair at all.

The argument is "marching" vs "not marching", not "marching" vs "car bombing".
#24 by "Belzebutt"
2000-07-11 07:51:01
awz@home.com
#22: Andy, where can I read more about this incident?
#25 by "Ian"
2000-07-11 08:02:33
terrencelaukkanen@hotmail.com
<b>#23</b> "Belzebutt" wrote...
<QUOTE>

#20: Canada a wannabe Britain? Judging by the recent UN rankings, I think it's the other way around :)

</quote>

I'm convinced Canada's number one ranking in the UN list of best countries to live in is due to the Prime Minister's ongoing pact with the Prince of Darkness, Satan himself (No Hulka, not Clinton. Although he is another world leader who's pact with the Dark One leads to un-natural popularity).

I guess the grass is alway's greener on the other side of the fence, because in my view Canada has horrific health care, farcical democracy, and it's really, really, cold. Personally, I can't see why any doctor in their right mind would work here if not for charity when they could be making double there money anywhere in America (Canada has socialized medicine, and anyone who's been paid by the government knows that they are the cheapest bastards you will ever know). I could bitch on and on for hours about how bad Canadian 'democracy' is (Democracy in Canada is an oxymoron), but I guess you never know how bad a country is until you live there. Actually I better quit bitching: No civil war, no famine, no crippling disease, no horrific natural disasters, no rampant crime, no Hummer-recieving leader selling the country out to the Chi-knees (Our leader sells out to pre-revolution Indonesia, then moves on as soon as they get democracy).

It seems Canada is number one with the UN just for lack of a better alternative.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#26 by "Baytor"
2000-07-11 08:04:38
baytor@yahoo.com http://www.geocities.com/baytor
You know, there would be a whole lot more action on this thread if you somehow managed to accuse Monolith of sabataging the Irish peace by not properly patching their games :)


I... AM BAYTOR!!!!<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#27 by "Andy"
2000-07-11 08:09:09
andy@planetcrap.com
<b>#24</b>, Belzebutt:
<QUOTE>
#22: Andy, where can I read more about this incident?
</QUOTE>
Check the BBC link I just posted, there's some info there. (Or <a href="http://news6.thdo.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/events/northern_ireland/history/newsid_68000/68885.stm">here</a>.) Beyond that, I don't know what you can find on the web. Probably not much.

Be careful if you hit the search engines. You'll find a lot of propaganda from both sides, so stick to sites that you trust.
#28 by "godZero"
2000-07-11 08:48:14
godzero@gmx.de
<b>#Main Post</b> "Darkseid-D" wrote...
<QUOTE>Hatreds and bigotry based on lies and mis information. Hatreds and bigotries
that carry on because thats what they've always done. I wont pretend to have the
answers to the solution, Im not sure there is a nice easy to package one. I know
that most of the population is sick and tired of the whole mess. Most of us want
to live in peace, but its the vocal minority screwing things up. We seem to have
a culture akin to English Soccer hooliganism. </QUOTE>

Hey, NI is not the only case. Take a look at Bosnia. A little background: I am Russian, lived in Bosnia till '95, then moved to Germany. I've seen all forms of misinformation, hate and human stupidity anyone can think of. The whole thing was only possible thanks to media.

The people down there lived in peace for 50 years. Then, some new politicians came up. After the end of socializm (in former Yugoslavia, it was nothing like Russian "regime", more like UK today) they started feeding nazi trolls. The economy was poor and they all blamed "the other side" and they USED RELIGION AS THEIR WEAPON. To put it short, the MAJOR REASON FOR ALL WARS IS THE CHURCH, in one form or the other. It's nothing against believers or the religion itself, it's just that the church MISUSES religion for their interests. Always did. Always will. It's the case in NI.

There are no other differences between the people there  _except_ religion. So the leaders (mis)use this fact for their purposes.

I get too emotional here. I've lost many friends in war and have too many bad memories. I was in jail because I didn't want to join the army during the war. Because I didn't want to shoot people. And I'm not even from that country, I just lived there (I'm russian). That's why I left:-(<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#29 by "Replica"
2000-07-11 10:35:44
mrrobzombie@ozemail.com.au
Well that just sucks ass! I got tickets to the opening ceremony!<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#30 by "Replica"
2000-07-11 10:36:31
mrrobzombie@ozemail.com.au
Replying to No. 21 btw.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#31 by "Replica"
2000-07-11 10:37:06
mrrobzombie@ozemail.com.au
Replying to No. 21 btw.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#32 by "Darkseid-[D!]"
2000-07-11 11:21:22
Darkseid-D@planetcrap.com http://www.pcinformer.co.uk
Gibraltar, undercover SAS unit elimined a 4 person IRA team.  3 men 1 woman, taken out in the street in broad daylight. They were on a scouting mission to blow up the British army barracks.  The undercover SAS unit, ID'd them, trailed them and _attempted_ to arrest them. You know the 'get the fuck on the ground or we fire', they ran and appeared to go for weaponry. The SAS did what theyre trained to do, eliminate hostiles.  

The IRA protested about Human rights and the evil British Government shooting its brave soldiers. They also attempted to have the Govt sued for murder and violations of human rights.  HAH _HUMAN FUCKING RIGHTS_. Sinn Fein dined out on it for weeks, stressing how evil it was. They then proceeded to car bomb and shoot off duty police whenever and wherever they could.  Anyone working with or for the security forcs became a valid target. Ray Grahams builders yard in Newtownards, masked men walked in, shot the floor manager because they were supplying materials to help rebuild the local police station, damaged in a mortar attack. They justified it as 'damaging the British war machine', even though the firm was merely selling its wares.

Funny, its only a 'war' when the terrorists are behaving in a certain way.  Its justifiable when they kick the door of a house in and shoot an off duty policemen 28 times in front of his wife and 2 kids.  Its justifiable when they shot Lance Corporal Stephen Restorick in the back when he was on Traffic Duty in Armagh.  He was in the process of leaning in a car windows to hand a woman back her driving license.  She said at the time 'He smiled and there was this terrible wet noise and he just fell away.. I can still see that smile....'.  

Enniskillen, rememberance sunday, 1984. The IRA detonates a 300lb fertilizer bomb in the middle of a service attended by some military forces.  18 civilian fatalities, 3 military, 400+ wounded.  Hyde Park 1987, Horse Guard parade bombed, 2 military casualties, 15 horses destroyed, 87 casualties.  London Docklands 1995, 4 civilian casualties, 300+ wounded, estimated 50million damages, no military value. Manchester shopping precint 8 civilian deaths, 3 children, no military value.  Omagh, 1999, 30 civilian casualties, 8 children, 2 unborn not counted in toll, 500+ wounded, no military value.

Thats just a litany of the worst, throughout the last 30 years or so there have been over a thousand police and soldiers killed in N.I.  Some in the line of duty, the vast majority struck down in bomb attacks or shot down.  

Ahoghill barracks 1987, the IRA mounts a frontal assault on the local police station. A station manned by part timers, with no real significance bar its closeness to the border with Eire.  They mounted a 50.50 caliber browning machine gun on a dumper truck. 8 Ira 'troops' all armed with grenades and automatic weaponry and they were to ram through the main gates and kill everyone in side. This was the first, and last time the IRA tried 'warfare' tactics.  The SAS, had the area under surveliance for some time and were ready for the attack.  Predictably, the IRA assault failed, with 6 casualties and 2 prisoners taken.  The SAS comment 'Stupid buggers'.

The IRA was largely funded and supplied by NORAID and Colonel Muamar Ghaddafi. Post Lockerbie (Pan Am flight 101) Ghadaffis involvement in supplying and training IRA units tailed off and they relied more upon american money and pre cached arms.  When Bill Clinton denied Gerry Adams access to the USA on fund raising terms, something changed in the whole political balance. Things moved and to be honest there has been a great deal of political progress made.  We _do_ have general cease fires from both terrorist camps (Unionist and Republican).

Splinter groups are still bombing, and punishment attacks are still taking place. The peace process is not a euphoria, but its a start.  The econmy has boomed, Belfast has been rejuvinated, with new buildings and roads going in.  Its becoming somewhere to be proud of, somewhere you could call home.

Then the silly season rolls round again and drags us kicking and screaming back toward that abyss.

Theres a Joke about the 'Orange Calender', it reads 'January February MARCH MARCH MARCH MARCH MARCH MARCH MARCH MARCH MARCH December'.  Or that you can tell which Formula One car is Eddie Irvines (easy, his is the one with the black nomex balaclava).  Those who live in the north tend to have a cynical dark sense of humour about things.

Protestantism and Catholocism...

Worship the Same God
Worship the same Jesus Christ
Believe in the same redemption
Have the same core.

the difference ?

Protestantism does not deify the Virgin Mary, nor does it revere the Pope as Gods representative on earth.  The whole papal ban on contraceptives is one bugbear, (like yeah really smart let your followers fuck like bunnies and create problems with food shortages and being unable to provide for them, but hey, since your RC, so are they, so the church has more bodies to spread its word).

Can anyone else see just how fucking moronic the whole situation is?

Ds
#33 by "ynohtnA"
2000-07-11 14:10:49
ynohtna@ynohtna.org http://www.ynohtna.org/
<b>#32</b> "Darkseid-[D!]" wrote...
<QUOTE>
Can anyone else see just how fucking moronic the whole situation is?</QUOTE>
It would be absurd if it wasn't for the constant pointless deaths.

Of course, the deaths merely intensify the fundamentalism displayed by both sides and prolong the hatred, leading to more deaths, increasing bigotry, escalating tension, more deaths...

Sigh...

Seems that humans are only good for self-engineered annihilation sometimes.
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#34 by "RandoM"
2000-07-11 15:12:23
random1@speakeasy.org
There could be border conflicts in every country in the middle east, OPEC would still have a firm grip on the flow of oil.  Don't even kid yourself that we'd try to destabilized them 'as a whole' in some attempt to negotiate a better economical position on oil imports.  Should Israel ever feel seriously threatened, you'll be seeing mushroom clouds on CNN.  No, we'll expend every effort to keep the conflicts there 'manageable'.

It is very hard for anybody to understand NI without having grown up there or somewhere very similar.  As was mentioned earlier, if you're brought to believe another group is 'evil' and/or determined to end your way of life, you're not going to just throw all of that conditioning away overnight.

As long as the English feel the need to maintain a military presence, the Irish will fight... themselves and the English.  Sure, they probably manage to deter and/or directly stop a lot of violence, but they continue to be a catalyst for further violence.  The Irish I've talked with this about, mostly people working in the US seem to have a much greater resentment for the English than they do for their countrymen who share a different religious opinion.

After all, Ireland isn't the first country to want the English driven from their shores.

Back a number of years ago when I worked for the New York State Assembly, I saw Gerry Adams speak at the Irish-American Legislators' dinner/gathering... overwhelming support from people who have a good deal of power, in this state at least, and lots of money to 'support the cause'.  Many, many Irish in NY who've gotten out of Ireland, but Ireland hasn't gotten out of them, not a bit.
#35 by "Diseased"
2000-07-11 16:16:48
diseasedanimal@yahoo.com
Can anyone tell me why the US decided to pick Israel to arm to the teeth in the middle east and no others?  Kind of goes along with Greenmarine's suspicions about us wanting a conflict there to keep oil cheap and the middle east as a non-unified, non-superpower.

What's so damn special about Israel?
#36 by "Vengeance[CoD]"
2000-07-11 16:27:29
rhiggi@home.com
<b>#35</b> "Diseased" wrote...
<QUOTE>

Can anyone tell me why the US decided to pick Israel to arm to the teeth in the middle east and no others? Kind of goes along with Greenmarine's suspicions about us wanting a conflict there to keep oil cheap and the middle east as a non-unified, non-superpower.

What's so damn special about Israel?

</QUOTE>

Jews.... Duuuuh.

Hmmm, if we Americans were really thoughtful enough to consider the oil dilema, we'd be looking for an alternate energy source a little harder.  Seems like I heard a prediction of a hundred years or so and it dries up, or at least they have to move somewhere else (drastic).  The gas prices here have doubled lately.  I think you will see Americans start paying more attention, and in time Congress will get involved unless the prices go back down (All I can say is, its about fucking time).  Thats my prediction.  You'll have to consult your own astrologist for answers to any personal questions.  Ohh, and Monica Lewinski will be advertising cigars before the year is over :) (heh, think I heard that on the radio already).

My personal opinion is that its in Americas Economy best interests to keep the gas prices reasonable.  If OPEC wants to flex thier mussle we have no choice but to bust thier balls.  We've gone to war over oil already.


V<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#37 by "Darkseid-[D!]"
2000-07-11 16:31:20
Darkseid-D@planetcrap.com http://www.pcinformer.co.uk
Hold it, right, the, fuck, there....

quote  As long as the English feel the need to maintain a military presence, the Irish will fight... themselves and the English.
/quote

scuse me, which irish are we talking about here? Would it be the minority population that lives in N.Ireland?  Would it be so called irish americans who have some irish heritages 3 generations previous? Would it be the self appointed pundits? Would it be the people who actually live here, day in, day out? Would it be the Republican community who, while the minority, assert their Irishness? It aint the Unionist/protestant majority who are proud to be British.  Just seeking to clarify who 'they' are in this instance.

quote  The Irish I've talked with this about, mostly people working in the US seem to have a much greater resentment for the English than they do for their countrymen who share a different religious opinion.
/quote

ah yes, the African American and Irish American Syndrome at work.  Not happy with just being 'American' Ill drag my heritage into it so I garner some 'social esteem'. This isnt a smack down, merely an observation that comes through from interacting with people. I swear if I hear one more fool say 'Chukie ar la' at me when they hear Im from N.Ireland..... well, it wont be pretty.

quote
After all, Ireland isn't the first country to want the English driven from their shores.
/quote

yeah N.Ireland parallels the USA, rebellion and terrorism to drive out the 'oppressors'.  Shame its only 150 miles seperating the nations instead of 5000.

Heres something else for you.  I can understand the Israeli/Palestine situation quite well. The Palestians(pals) were turfed off their own land and forced into various camps. The Israelis rule by force, military patrols, shootings, curfews. Its a militarily enforced regieme.  Sadly too many people seem to think this is the case in N.Ireland.  The RC population is _not_ being in any way oppressed. Theres no restriction on movement, wanna live in Eire, go right ahead.  

Theres nothing like apartheid, no segregation on the buses.  The British govt collects taxes, pays for social security, pays for medical care, runs the infrastructure, maintains the roads.  Yet Roman Catholics are oppressed? Scuse me, how exactly?  Youre oppressed because its not a united Ireland? Uhm, sorry that arguement doesnt scan. Interesting tidbit, remember the population split 65/35, well the employment legislation, says 50/50. Tell me, which group is this unfair to? Whaaa the RUC is bigotted and doesnt represent republicans, well gee you spent 30 years coming up with ways to kill them, and now you wonder why there arent more RC's in the police?

Whaaaa the British Army is supressing us. No, the army is there to stop the two sides killing each other in something called a civil war.  The 1960s kicked this all off, with rioting on the streets and pretty much general warfare in LondonDerry and areas of Belfast.  The British army was sent in to restore the peace, and because the RC community had been getting hammered, they welcomed the army with open arms (and cups of tea).  Things changed, the IRA mutated into a non violence group and became Feine Faile. You might have heard of them, theyre the elected governing party in Dublin.

Spin up a while, the army segregating areas of the province up to keep the two sides seperate. The RC population begins to see this as them being put down, they turn on the army.  It escalates, the Provisional IRA is formed (yes the current IRA is still the pIRA). Then come the events of bloody sunday in 'Derry. A wedge is firmly driven between both communities, and between the army and the RC population.  

30 years, the Army has been stationed in N.I to stop it degenerating back into a civil war situation. In just the same way as the UN has peacekeeping troops in Bosnia and other world hotspots.  Sadly the resentment never died away, the RC community still feels oppressed. Up until 2 or 3 years ago, police/army checkpoints were a common sight. Pulling traffic over, checking details, general security work.  Now its rare to see the army on the streets, whereas fully armed patrols were a regular sight.

People used to joke about being afraid to visit N.I. I always made the crack of having a spare flak vest to lend them. Truth be known, it was never _that_ bad. Sure there were areas you avoided and you had to be smart, but Im sure everyone has those same areas, be they crack houses, or the local biker gang.  Myself I can hold two passports, but I choose to be British. I dont want to learn Gaelic, I dont want to be part of a united Ireland. I like my nationality, but Im sick of my compatriots.

Once again, N.I. teeters on the brink.  I rather think however, that youd see an all out civil war before a re unification of north and south. But, I suspect in a few generations itll be moot, eventually RC's will be the majority in N.Ireland and force the point.

bleh, now to fight my way home through more 'disturbances'. Ill post more later if I make it.

Ds

(ps Chuky ar la means 'our day will come' its an IRA slogan, and deeply offensive to anyone who's lost friends to terrorists)
#38 by "fyrewolf"
2000-07-11 17:31:48
Darkseid,

By your logic, we should start turning towns in southern Texas that have a majority Latino population over to Mexico (and I'm sure conservatives would just love that idea).  I know the situation in Northern Ireland is a mess, but your bigotry against Catholics frankly disgusts me.

f.
#39 by "Belzebutt"
2000-07-11 17:32:06
awz@home.com
I'm curious to hear how English people feel about all this. Pretty much everyone seems to hate them, whether you talk to the Irish, Scotts, Indians, or other former colonies. They seem to have pissed quite a few people off. I haven't seen Patriot, but I heard that movies makes the English look like Nazis.
#40 by "Diseased"
2000-07-11 17:32:44
diseasedanimal@yahoo.com
<QUOTE>Jews.... Duuuuh.  Hmmm, if we Americans were really thoughtful enough to consider the oil dilema, we'd be looking for an alternate energy source a little harder. Seems like I heard a prediction of a hundred years or so and it dries up, or at least they have to move somewhere else (drastic). The gas prices here have doubled lately. I think you will see Americans start paying more attention, and in time Congress will get involved unless the prices go back down (All I can say is, its about fucking time). Thats my prediction. You'll have to consult your own astrologist for answers to any personal questions. Ohh, and Monica Lewinski will be advertising cigars before the year is over :) (heh, think I heard that on the radio already).

My personal opinion is that its in Americas Economy best interests to keep the gas prices reasonable. If OPEC wants to flex thier mussle we have no choice but to bust thier balls.  We've gone to war over oil already. </QUOTE>

Okay, more specifically, what is so special about the Jews?  Is this all about the biblical prophecy of the essential protection of Jews or something?
#41 by "Belzebutt"
2000-07-11 17:33:55
awz@home.com
Darkseid,

you kind of seemed to quickly skim over the Bloody Sunday event, can you say more about what happened there?
#42 by "Bad_CRC"
2000-07-11 17:36:06
I still don't see how the people who live in a mess like this are always the first ones to bash the US to say how bad things are here.

Makes no sense.


_______________________________________
<i>"Every time I see Bill Gates or Steve Ballmer on television, spouting the Microsoft party line  about the 'freedom to innovate,' I can't help but think of Inigo Montoya in the movie the Princess Bride, saying "You keep using that word... I do not think it means what you think it means."</i><I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#43 by "12xu"
2000-07-11 17:36:34
mswitzer@insync.net http://http;//www.hichouston.org
<b>#35</b> "Diseased" wrote...
<QUOTE>Can anyone tell me why the US decided to pick Israel to arm to the teeth in the
middle east and no others? Kind of goes along with Greenmarine's suspicions
about us wanting a conflict there to keep oil cheap and the middle east as a
non-unified, non-superpower.

What's so damn special about Israel?
</QUOTE>

It wouldn't exist if it weren't for the allies after WWII.

It is small, and surrounded by people that had to be run off to put Israel on the map.  


Oh yeah, and most jews are lighter skinned than arabs...


12xu
out<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#44 by "avixe"
2000-07-11 17:38:33
jsg@fiam.net
Good topic.
#45 by "fyrewolf"
2000-07-11 17:41:27
<quote>I haven't seen Patriot, but I heard that movies makes the English look like Nazis.</quote>

Appearently the worst of it was when they showed the British locking people in a church and then setting it on fire, which of course did happen.  The problem is that it wasn't the British in the American Revolution, it was the Nazis in WWII.  I can understand why they'd be angry.

f.
#46 by "Ian"
2000-07-11 17:42:29
terrencelaukkanen@hotmail.com
Israel was created because of a bad pattern:

<b>Every time Jewish people got settled in a Country (Russia, Germany, etc.) they got massecred.</b>

Its sort of like, they burned their hands on an oven, and now they're never going near an oven again.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#47 by "Darkseid-[D!]"
2000-07-11 17:43:12
darkseid-d@planetcrap.com http://www.captured.com/boomstick
scuse me ?

my Bigotry against Catholics ?

where exactly am I slamming Catholics ?

cmon, show me.

what logic am I demonstrating that says I should hand majority towns over ?

cmon, show me.

Dont hide behind ad hominem attacks.  Show me what you mean, otherwise Ill dismiss you as someone who _didnt_ understand what I was saying.



bigotry, meh.

Ds




<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#48 by "Skid"
2000-07-11 17:43:26
skid@planetquake.com http://www.planetquake.com/generations
#39
I think it just comes down to their arrogance. Its nothing specific to just them though. They did control one of the biggest Empires ever just a little over 50 years ago. Their egos inflated naturally during that time. And now when they've lost it, you've got more people who were raised by parents with bad memories of English rule than any other group. Its the same thing with the French, but they never got as big as the English, plus they haven't learned to let go and move on, as seen by the Algerian situation.


#40
I think its just money. From what I've seen, Jews are one of the most united and cohesive group you are likely to come across. Plus they have got lots of cash and therefore, influence with in the US government. Naturally, they mostly get what they want.
#49 by "Ian"
2000-07-11 17:53:58
terrencelaukkanen@hotmail.com
Skid:

Do you really believe that the Jews have more influence on the US government than say, Christians? Why do you think its called the Christian Right? In fact, despite his actions, Bill Clinton still goes to a Christian church every Sunday. The Conservative party is controlled almost completely by Christians, who are infinitly better organized and have more members and money than the Jewish people do.

I may be over-reacting, but your post sounded to me like:
<i>"The Jews are so rich, they control our government. BEWARE THE JEWS!"</i><I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#50 by "fyrewolf"
2000-07-11 17:59:38
<quote>Protestantism does not deify the Virgin Mary, nor does it revere the Pope as Gods representative on earth. The whole papal ban on contraceptives is one bugbear, (like yeah really smart let your followers fuck like bunnies and create problems with food shortages and being unable to provide for them, but hey, since your RC, so are they, so the church has more bodies to spread its word).
</quote>

Let's see what we got Darkseid.  You claim Catholics worship the Virgin Mary as a god (which goes against the first commandment).  You claim the reason Catholics can't use contraceptives is some sort of conspiracy to increase their population.  You claim Catholic parents can't properly care for their family because of this.

This is bigotry.  It's too bad you can't see it.  And yet you wonder why the violence continues.

f.
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