[Marxism] The Real IRA announce that the war is not over
Jscotlive at aol.com
Jscotlive at aol.com
Mon Mar 9 18:08:16 MDT 2009
A political crisis has been created in the space of 48 hours in the North of
Ireland. First two British soldiers were shot dead outside their base just
outside Belfast on Saturday night, with a further two injured along with two
civilians, while tonight (Monday, local time) a policeman has been shot dead
in Craigavon, County Armagh.
The Real IRA, who've claimed responsibility for the attack on the British
base on Saturday night, and who, I'm taking an educated guess, were also
responsible for the operation which resulted in the death of the police officer in
Craigavon tonight, have just announced in emphatic terms that the war has
resumed in the North after 12 years of relative peace and devolved government in
All across the TV news networks and in the newspapers revulsion has been the
response to these attacks from the British Government and all political
parties in the North of Ireland, including Sinn Fein. The message being drummed
home is that this organisation of dissident republicans has no popular support
in republican communities and that the peace process will not and cannot be
Unprecedented has been the public statements of denunciation of both the
attacks and the people who carried them out by the leadership of Sinn Fein,
specifically Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness, both former key members of the
leadership of the Provisional IRA. Indeed, Sinn Fein has called for the
perpetrators to be apprehended by the security forces.
The Real IRA, said to be currently around 100 strong with perhaps twice that
number of sympathisers, as yet do not enjoy mass support in republican
communities in the North, nor have they emerged organically from a mass struggle.
However, this does not mean they won’t gain that support. Their intent with
these attacks seems twofold. Firstly to provoke a major response from the
authorities in the form of troops and checkpoints back on the streets, security
measures that hopefully will have the effect of alienating republican
communities. Secondly to undermine and hopefully isolate Adams and McGuinness, the
republican Old Guard, by placing them in the invidious position of either
collaborating with the authorities, and risking the ire of many among their own
ranks, or else refusing to cooperate with the authorities and face being
ostracised by their unionist partners and the British government. Thus far Adams
and McGuinness have opted for the former of the aforementioned options, which
could well result in deep resentment within their own ranks amongst those who
would view such collaboration as treachery to republican ideals.
This thing is obviosuly at its very early stages, but even so already the
RIRA have succeeded in creating a political crisis in reminding all involved
that the contradiction in the North of Ireland that lay at the root of the
original Troubles - partition - has still not been resolved.
As with South Africa post-apartheid, the peace process in the Six Counties
has merely succeeded in creating a new political class, which has arisen on the
back of huge UK government subsidies in a clear attempt to buy the
acquiesence of both the loyalist and republican communities. Belfast city centre may
be booming, but travel out to the working class communities on the outskirts
and you enter a different world. Here the old divisions are as entrenched as
they were during 30 years of conflict.
The Adams leadership has clearly been shaken by these events, as have the
British Government, which is precisely the impact the RIRA intended.
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