Monday, March 21, 2005

IRA should keep its guns

A letter from Ireland explains why the IRA should keep its weapons:

Sir - The populist political bandwagoners in Dublin, London and Washington are demanding disarmament of the IRA. Conveniently, they neglect to mention Loyalist weaponry. If the IRA were to hand in/destroy their stockpiles, to whom could the nationalist people turn in the face of State-sponsored violence, courtesy of the PSNI who are really old RUC wine in a new bottle? Surely, not to Dublin? Lip service is what they would get from that quarter.

Whatever police force in the North of Ireland eventually emerges from the current wrangle will have to demonstrate its commitment to full impartiality to the whole population, by word and deed. Respect for the police will not come automatically; it will have to be earned.

Sinn Fein is absolutely right not to join the Police Board for a long time to come, if ever. A first step towards encouraging them to do so would be an apology from Hugh Orde for the years of one-sided justice dispensed by the RUC, together with its collusion with Loyalist paramilitaries in the murder of nationalists.

Brian Mac a' Bhaird,
Carraig Mhachaire Rois,
Co Mhuineachain

Which of course raises the question as to why so few people in Washington, Dublin and London are concerned about the loyalist potential for violence.


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