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Old 09-27-2005, 08:07 AM   #16
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Well the weapons they received were in cases above the security forces estimates and all others fell within those estimates....

Lets make it clear nobody knows how many weapons the IRA had, the IRA don't know how many weapons they have....you can never know if they have given up everything they have had....it is just impossible

What we need to know is whether thay have decommissioned the threat to kill...and all the recent statements have basically said that.

Now there is no way of ever knowing whether elements of the IRA will remain active, the lower levels may carry out their own activities....but i believe the top guys, the council want this to be over...

But as far as decommissioning goes...they have i think...they have decommissioned all their known weapons in my opinion...i have faith in de Chastelain...they need to focus on the loyalists now...they have let them go on to long without any political pressure put on them
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Old 09-27-2005, 11:39 AM   #17
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Originally posted by LJT

What we need to know is whether thay have decommissioned the threat to kill...and all the recent statements have basically said that.
I agree with this. I don't know what it's like over there (I suppose it's illegal to own guns?), but I know here it's not too hard to buy some rifles. I can imagine they could get more guns in a second if they wanted to, you can't prevent that. You can't card someone everytime they pick up some fertilizer at the store. But it seems like they're saying they have no intention of using any violent means, which is kind.

About the loyalist gangs, why do they deserve the distinction of being "loyalists"? Attacking police and each other hardly has anything to do with any cause, and from what I understand it's got a lot more to do with drugs. Why not just call them drug mobs, etc? I know I'm being naive, but it just seems like they don't even deserve to be treated as a symptom of the troubles or whatever, just a drug gang.

by the way, did you guys ever find out what the IRA are planning to do with the $50,000,000 they robbed...
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Old 09-27-2005, 01:15 PM   #18
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hehe it depends...it may not have been a proper IRA operation that bank robbery...i think it was more an element of the IRA that knew the IRA would be decommissioning so they went for a big pay deal...or it could have been the IRA council setting up their retirement fund The top guys are used to a certain lifestyle....

No one knows really...the Northern Bank retracted all its notes in circulation and issued new ones so the ones that were stolen would be worthless...but i am assuming the people who stole it managed to do something with it
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Old 09-27-2005, 01:24 PM   #19
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Originally posted by VertigoGal


About the loyalist gangs, why do they deserve the distinction of being "loyalists"? Attacking police and each other hardly has anything to do with any cause, and from what I understand it's got a lot more to do with drugs. Why not just call them drug mobs, etc? I know I'm being naive, but it just seems like they don't even deserve to be treated as a symptom of the troubles or whatever, just a drug gang.
On your other points...the loyalists are armed to the teeth with 'legal' weapons and many others. As you said nothing is going to stop any element of any porganisation going out getting some fertiliser and lemon juice and hey presto we have bombs, grenades what ever...the IRA were famed for being able to make anything into a bomb...rocket launchers out of pipes, and bombs out biscuit packaging Its just something you can't really decommission on either side...if someone wants to kill they will.

Loyalists are confused...they are losing their natural enemy they were happier when the IRA was active...as now they don't have a purpose to exist but they want to keep their drug running and all that...they are not just drug gangs though...UVF a loyalist group was formed in 1912, that is far older than what we call the IRA now...loyalists are still engaged in forcing Catholics from their homes in places like Ahoghill, they are still sectarian....

Also i would like to say...just because the IRA has decommissioned it doesnt mean the end of Republicanism vs Loyalism...Republicanism has had many different forms in the past such as the Irish Republican Brotherhood, The Fenians etc the name changes every now and then, the cause stays the same.

I hate to say this you know the cause has always umm resonated with me...it is what i want and i can't blame these guys in the 1800s or early 1900s, trying to free their country from British rule..i am nationalist i want a free united Ireland...but times have achanged and the violence gets you nowhere in this modern world and i don't support violent means to get a united Ireland.
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Old 09-27-2005, 01:44 PM   #20
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Yeah there's nothing wrong with sympathizing with the cause, even if you don't agree with the tactics. I probably would too...it seems like these days, especially post-9/11 with all the "war on terror" talk, it would be more beneficial to use political means as it is.

I actually have a question...I understand this movement started as a civil rights movement similar to the one in the southern US in the 60s, but for a number of reasons took a more violent turn. I'm assuming that a lot of the rights Catholics were deprived of are now in place, so one could just assume that it's the IRA campaign that achieved that. Do you think thats true, ie could a completely nonviolent campaign have achieved the same results, and if not when do think the IRA should've ended their campaign (if you think it should've been earlier than it was)? I hope that question makes sense...

by the way, I looked at the list of the decomissioned weapons on the bbc, and I didn't see "1 bad Harrison Ford movie" anywhere in sight.
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Old 09-27-2005, 02:09 PM   #21
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Hm, hard to compare but if you think of India and Gandhi, he didn't use any violent means and despite India overcame the colnial power. Same with America, King reached way more for the Africans than Malcolm X.

But I can't really say if it is comparable to Northern Ireland.
I think in the end the violent campaign didn't reach anything a nonviolent campaign would'nt have reached.
The Republic and Nothern Ireland aren't united, and the inequality between Catholics and Protestants still exists.
As far as I know there are still more Catholics unemployed than Protestants, and still the higher positions in companies are filled with Protestants, and so on.
But correct me if I'm wrong, LJT.
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Old 09-27-2005, 02:21 PM   #22
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right, well the same could be said for African-Americans in the US as compared to white Americans. you can't immediately reverse cultural things like that. I guess I was just talking about basic civil rights such as fair elections and equal opportunity, etc. Things that are more immediate, whereas a United Ireland seems like more of an emotional issue.
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Old 09-27-2005, 05:31 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal
I guess I was just talking about basic civil rights such as fair elections and equal opportunity, etc. Things that are more immediate, whereas a United Ireland seems like more of an emotional issue.
No more of an emotional issue than "basic civil rights," IMO. It's not for me to argue whether a united Ireland is ultimately necessary for full realization of "Catholic" rights, but many certainly would argue that.
Quote:
Originally posted by Vincent Vega
Hm, hard to compare but if you think of India and Gandhi, he didn't use any violent means and despite India overcame the colnial power. Same with America, King reached way more for the Africans than Malcolm X.
Wasn't the Civil War, which militarily forced the Confederacy to free its slaves and recognize the supremacy of Washington, a necessary pretext for the success of the civil rights movement? Even in King's day, the support of the National Guard was necessary to achieve integration of schools, etc. in the South.

Also, while I a great admirer of Gandhi, I would have to disagree that his Quit India movement was the main reason behind the end of the Raj. A more decisive factor was that Britain was already militarily, financially, and politically overextended far beyond what it could afford, and WWII was the proverbial last straw. One need only look at the (continuing) bloody quagmire opened up in Kashmir by Britain's appallingly abrupt and sloppy withdrawal to see how little Gandhi's (or anyone else's) preferences were consulted in the matter.

**This is not a criticism BTW, I realize you yourself found these analogies problematic.
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Old 09-27-2005, 07:07 PM   #24
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Yes, that's right.

Good points, maybe I overestimated those movements a bit. But at least you could see a violent movement isn't more effective than a non-violent movement.
But you are right, there were more reasons for Britain to leave India, and more reasons why King was successful.

Hm, it's every time hard to compare the historical efforts of two countries, groups or people.

I hope the Real IRA remains quiet and officials in Great Britain and the world and other powerful men and women now will force the loyalists to give up their weapons.
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Old 09-27-2005, 07:30 PM   #25
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Originally posted by VertigoGal
Yeah there's nothing wrong with sympathizing with the cause, even if you don't agree with the tactics. I probably would too...it seems like these days, especially post-9/11 with all the "war on terror" talk, it would be more beneficial to use political means as it is.

I actually have a question...I understand this movement started as a civil rights movement similar to the one in the southern US in the 60s, but for a number of reasons took a more violent turn. I'm assuming that a lot of the rights Catholics were deprived of are now in place, so one could just assume that it's the IRA campaign that achieved that. Do you think thats true, ie could a completely nonviolent campaign have achieved the same results, and if not when do think the IRA should've ended their campaign (if you think it should've been earlier than it was)? I hope that question makes sense...
As i think Financeguy said a while back...it is more nationalistic than civil rights...all this is not in relation to one just the one century...Irish people have been fighting for their right to freedom and an Ireland under the control of its own people for at least 700 years...it just so happens that the majority of people who consider themselves as Irish are Catholic, which is because before Henry VIII in England we were a completely Catholic country...it was during the plantations where Irish land was taken to provide for Protestant settlers that the root of the problems really began...

The violence i suppose of the modern Republican campaign i guess did get the British speaking to Sinn Fein...i still actually remember a time when they didn't allow Gerry Adams to speak on TV they had some actor dub over his voice.....it kinda gave a more immediate need for the british to actually talk to Republicans...really i am unsure...the violence certainly made the need to talk to Republicans more immediate as i said but earlier in the century we almost got Home Rule through political means...

The violence i just think was inevitable...the Catholic situation in NI was bad and someone had to do something about that...it turned out that it was a paramilitary organisation.....it was Loyalists that started the Troubles as we know it...attacking civil rights marches in Derry and burning Catholics out of their homes in Belfast...the RUC the police force at the time had a heavily Loyalist bias, they were not doing anything to stop it, so naturally the people turned to the IRA as such for protection...nobody else was going to do it, but after the first few incidents in the very early troubles in the 1960s i think the IRA had fulfilled what the people wanted it to do....

The IRA's cause was for a unified Ireland...it was never going to achieve that..so therefore it had no real way of ending unless there was a united Ireland...though now it seems to want to achieve that by political means....

The modern world requires a more political resolution due to a change in attitudes and ideas...i think the IRAs campaign was just 30 years too late to really achieve anything...a violent campaign in Western society achieves very little..

so in summary:

the idea of a free ireland was not limited to the 20th century.

irish catholic discrimination had been going on for centuries

IRA campaign was ineffective other than making the need for talks more immediate (not particularly sure)


I hope that answers your questions sorry i am just back from a night out...i will probably try to clarify what i said tomorrow...
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Old 09-27-2005, 11:00 PM   #26
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No more of an emotional issue than "basic civil rights," IMO.
I don't know...Maybe I am underestimating the extent of people's nationalist feelings, but I don't know how many (in this case) Cathilocs would be willing to risk their lives and families in NI today for a United Ireland. Would it really change daily life of standard of living in a very drastic way? (I don't necessarily know that answer to that question...) It seems logical that when a group of people are being blatantly oppressed (not their ancestors), there is likely to be more urgent support for a movement, particularly when it's a violent one. Obviously there is no United Ireland today, yet most of the violence and *support* for violent means has died down. That doesn't necessarily mean that people care any less about the idea, but whoever said terrorism is an act of desperation was pretty accurate, in my opinion.

Quote:
The modern world requires a more political resolution due to a change in attitudes and ideas...i think the IRAs campaign was just 30 years too late to really achieve anything...a violent campaign in Western society achieves very little.
yeah, I agree. I remember the guy that got murdered in a bar earlier this year even made it onto the news in the US. (although maybe that's just because it coincided nicely with st. paddy's day....we like our stereotypes.) anyway, if one murder gets that much attention, you know you've gotten to the point where a large-scale campaign using violence would be futile and counterproductive.

okay I'm not feeling very articulate tonight, it took me about half an hour to respond. Hopefully the first paragraph made sense.
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Old 09-28-2005, 01:55 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally posted by VertigoGal
Maybe I am underestimating the extent of people's nationalist feelings, but I don't know how many (in this case) Cathilocs would be willing to risk their lives and families in NI today for a United Ireland. Would it really change daily life of standard of living in a very drastic way? (I don't necessarily know that answer to that question...) It seems logical that when a group of people are being blatantly oppressed (not their ancestors), there is likely to be more urgent support for a movement, particularly when it's a violent one. Obviously there is no United Ireland today, yet most of the violence and *support* for violent means has died down.
I don't disagree with anything here, so perhaps I misunderstood the intent of your NI/US civil rights analogy. What I took you to be implying was, roughly, that bread-and-butter civil rights grievances are always best redressed through peaceful means, and gain popular credibility as incentives to violence only when they get mixed up with pie-in the-sky causes like "United Ireland." (Hmmm, must be time for my midnight snack...)

I am skeptical that the two can be separated that cleanly, which is why I put my response in the context of objecting to the notion that MLK and Gandhi's successes were examples of "pure" nonviolence. MLK's "Promised Land" and Gandhi's "Swaraj" were never fully realized, either...yet they provided a necessary theoretical compass for their followers, and enough things were changed that we count their campaigns as successes today. I am NOT suggesting that Gerry Adams is the moral equal of those great men...just that whether or not he/SF/IRA couldn't just as easily have achieved whatever they have through years of peaceful protest is probably a misguided question. JMO.
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Old 09-28-2005, 07:26 AM   #28
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In the 60s their had to be some sort of violent response from the nationalist catholic community, the security forces were against them, loyalists were attacking them and they were oppressed...

...so yes it was born out of desperation, that people turned to the IRA...you know from where i am living, i could take you to a number of IRA men's houses, and associated businesses....

The IRA really before the 60s focused on the security forces...as in British army, and the police...because they were seen as occupational forces...umm that is something i have trouble disagreeing with in my own head, it just seems to me the same thing as the way the US used the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan...

The idea of the IRA in my head is not always purely that they were terrorists...i can understand them at the start trying to remove British control...and i can see how people may have believed they had no other choice but to fight for their freedom...

...but they became just a mob in the end, killing who they wanted ie the civilian attacks in England... I am confused over my feelings on them at times you know..and i hate to say i have sympathetic feelings for an organisation that has killed so many
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Old 09-28-2005, 07:33 PM   #29
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Yes, I understand. An organization killing civilans or shooting somebody in the knee as an act of law enforcment isn't an organisation you say: "Yes, that's great, the fought for us!" You'll clearly have mixed feelings with such an organisation.
But during the trouble nobody could really claim to have everything done right.


With Gandhi and MLK, they didn't totally achieve what they wanted, but you'll never get that. You'll ever have to make compromises. It was an aching compromise to split the country into India and Pakistan, and the conflict with the Kashmir region was very sad, too, but at least Gandhi was a man who understood that a too radical point has to fail.
Yes, the British had more reasons to leave India, but I think without Gandhi the death rate would be a very high one.
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Old 09-29-2005, 12:38 AM   #30
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yolland sorry I didn't clarify myself very well, I think we're both saying the same thing.

LJT I can understand what you mean. It's complicated because there's no problem in sympathizing with the cause and even the reasons for resorting to violence. It seems like when it comes to violence even the most noble cause can't stay noble for very long...I guess that's what it does to people, I don't know.
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