Wednesday, September 03, 2008
... and all I got was this lousy power-sharing executive.
Well, I wasn't, but a lot of people I'm aware of, have met, have socialised with, were part of the militant Republican movement.
The war was declared over some years back. Now the British overlords have confirmed that the transition to mainstream political activity is complete.
I suppose there wasn't much time left for Martin McGuinness (see pic, far right) to be holding IRA council meetings since his day job as Deputy First Minister to Ian Paisley and Mr Iris Robinson (who himself was a terrorist in his day, as the people of Clontibret can testify, see pic below) takes up so many hours.
But today's final nail in the Provo coffin must be hard to bear for some of the ground level volunteers - the people who took a guerilla war to what were often violent, brutish and sadistic British troops.
They've got out of prison early, which I wasn't a great fan of. But where are they now, the best years of their lives spent fighting a civil war or incarcerated? Sure some of them have got nice state jobs like Marty McGuinness, as 'community workers' and the like.
But most of them must now be wondering what was it all for? This paltry power-sharing deal? The same deal as Sunningdale offered so many decades ago? For Martin McGuinness to swan around preposterously posing as a peacemaker to Iraqis?
And what of the victims? Not just the victims of Provo attacks, but the victims of Provo domination of neighbourhoods, the victims of Provo intimidation of individuals, the victims of Provo insistence that they and only they could speak for Irish Republicanism?
How do they feel today?
Well, the Unionists now have what they wanted. They have Stormont back, they have made the IRA go away, they have their gerrymandered veto on Irish reunification. They have their pet Provos in the ha'penny power places.