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Old December 14th, 2012, 04:49 AM   #351
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Old December 14th, 2012, 04:52 PM   #352

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Ah where to begin, where to begin. I should have liked to set several points straight as the debate continued, but I was unfortunately suffering ISP problems and could only observe via mobile phone. Perhaps that's for the better though, because we can learn some very interesting (and sad) lessons from the discourse over the last number of pages.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bish View Post
But Scotland is a part of the UK, so flying both flags make sense. Ulster is not a part of the Republic, so why should they fly the flag.

It would be like Eastern European immigrants expecting their respective flag to be flown outside goverment buildings here.
The tricolour is the flag of the Irish nation, as well as the Irish state. As such the Gaeil reserve the right to fly it as their banner wherever they might be found. I have explained this before, numerous times. Let me be absolutely clear here: Ireland is not a nation state.

To be even more explicit, the nation of Ireland covers the entire island, and has done since its beginnings in the Ancient High Kingship. The ties that bound the nation - culture, language, identity - were not broken (though elements such as government and law fell) nor can they ever be completely destroyed at this point. West Belfast is even a Gaeltacht at this point.

The Irish state has jurisdiction in 26 of the 32 counties.

There lies the difference, don't have me explain it again.

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Originally Posted by Von Ranke View Post
Aye Bish I did point out that the situation in Scotland is different from that of Ulster. Compromise means that both communities are considered when tough political decisions are made. Flying both flags while not ideal does seem to me to be a pragmatic solution and given the fact that the violence is being ramped up in the province a short term fix might help dampen things down till a longer term solution is found. At the end of the day it is only a matter of time until the Nationalist population outstrips the Protestants in the province and it is to be hoped that they will not ignore loyalist sentiment when they are in power. One lives in hope but I will not hold my breath.
I interpret this inevitability to be the most serious motivator of Loyalist extremism. Unionism, particularly northern Irish unionism, has always thrived on the fear of persecution under a Gaelic Irish majority. Hence 'Home Rule is Rome rule' and all of the other nonsense. Even prior to the Union itself, the British population in Northern Ireland feared persecution to the point that they would strike pre-emptively. Who could ignore the Peep o' Days boys and the Defenders clashing in an era before the United Irishmen and an era long before Protestant Irish Nationalism as a phenomenon died out (though Protestant nationalists remain, obviously). The Orangemen who marched south to save Lord Boycott's crop another example of hostility without basis to the Gaelic Irish.

Whether they will be persecuted in a United Ireland, who knows. The hope has to be of course, that they would not be. Were their own actions to be reciprocated it would certainly constitute persecution of the most grievous nature, but I would hope Irish state and Irish people would be better than that. It remains to be seen.

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Originally Posted by Von Ranke View Post
In an ideal world that would be a perfect solution but this is Ulster where a cosy armchair academic debate has never been possible. Besides the whole thing kicked off because of the removal of the Union Jack which is clearly unacceptable to the Unionists. Any solution must be acceptable to both parties as a lot of big scary bangs will result if it does not.
Here's the sad conclusion VR: further violence is inevitable.

Why? The Good Friday agreement was signed on the understanding that the era of the Orange state was over, and the era of mutual understanding and acceptance was approaching. Fundamental to the agreement was the permanent Republican ceasefire, a ceasefire given on the basis that Northern Ireland would be co-governed by both traditions.

Now, that ceasefire came into place, and the PIRA entered government. But we see now that nothing has changed on the Unionist side. No concession has in fact been made by the Unionist tradition, who, rather than choosing to cohabit the island with the Irish Gaels instead continue to deny their existence or more importantly, the existence and legitimacy of their political views. This is evident from recent weeks, where a democratically taken vote was insufficient to even remove a British flag in the eyes of very many unionists.

Thus the logical conclusion is fairly simple. If the Unionist tradition are still unwilling to recognise the legitimacy of the Nationalist tradition or even the need to peacefully cohabit the land with Irish nationalists, then why in the name of God should the IRA continue to support the partition regime? Unless democracy and compromise are brought to the fore of Unionist thought as they have long been at the fore of Nationalist thought, then there is no point in a power sharing government or pretence at toleration. The simple fact is that the Nationalist tradition would be better off undermining the Unionist position through violence.

Sad, but true. So if this craic continues in the North, there'll be much soul-searching amongst nationalists.

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Originally Posted by Bish View Post
But the problem is, during the recent troubles, with only a few excesses such as bloody Sunday, there were no excesses on the part of the British. And as the campaign went on, the rescrictions placed on the Army grew.
Blatantly incorrect to the point of provocative. Only this week a report found that the British state directly ordered the murder of an innocent nationalist simply because he was the legal representative of the hunger strikers. And David Cameron still refuses further investigation. Britain's excesses were many and horrific, and they continue right up to the present day. David Cameron confirmed it this very week.

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Originally Posted by Bish View Post
And flying both flags would not only offend unionists, but would also be giving in to people like McGuiness and other murderers.
You mean the people who Britain signed the GFA with? So, if you can't tolerate compromise (aka "giving in") with Nationalist representatives, why should they tolerate the continuing British occupation of Northern Ireland?

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Originally Posted by Von Ranke View Post
No one is saying it would not offend anyone. I could not care less if it did but it just might be acceptable enough to both parties in order to stop the immediate violence. At least Bish I am trying to put forward ideas which just might work or would you like to see the old crap return where Protestants, Catholics and Squaddies died in large numbers? I would like to hear what you think should be done.
The choice as I see it is simple VR; mutual compromise or war.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Linschoten View Post
No, it would have precisely the opposite effect, it would be dangerously inflammatory!
What does that say Linschoten, that it is not dangerously inflammatory to Nationalist tradition to claim Northern Ireland for Britain? The two traditions either co-exist or they don't, what applies to one applies to the other. The Union Jack flies, then the Tricolour flies. The Union Jack stays down, then the Tricolour stays down. Simple fairness and equality, the basis of all agreements to date. Or are we barking up the wrong tree, signing agreements with 'Perfidious Albion'?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bish View Post
The Poll tax was a democratic decision, no one complains about over turning that.

The UK has a democratically lead Conservative government, that doesn't stop Scots complain they have government imposed on them.

Democracy, if that's what you want to call it, isn't always right. And a decision made by an elected body doesn't necessarily represent the will of the majority.
It's called representative democracy, and it's the system of government in Europe and most of the Western world. If you don't like it, too bad. The flag was voted down, and the flag is coming down.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brunel View Post
It's trouble because the 1998 Good Friday Agreement, which made Britain and her army shamefully surrender to the terrorists and gangsters of the IRA thanks to pressure from a Bill Clinton who desperately wanted the Irish American vote, states that the flag of the United Kingdom shall only be flown in Northern Ireland - a part of the United Kingdom - for just 17 days of the year. The Loyalists are right to be angry.
Back to war then, is it? What do you care for the people of Northern Ireland? Nothing but a conduit for your expression of chauvinist English imperialism, either tradition. Sit back relax, and let the Irishmen kill each other over your inferiority complex.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Linschoten View Post
Interesting article in the Telegraph today suggesting that those of us who thought that there is an inevitable demographic shift toward the end of the Union have got it wrong. The proportion of Catholics is indeed coming close to that of Protestants. 'The key point, however, is that being a Catholic no longer dictates your political allegiance. Asked to select one or more identities, 48 pc of NI's inhabitants chose British, 29 pc Northern Irish, and only 28 pc Irish...Last year, a survey showed that, while only 4 pc of Protestants want a united Ireland, more than half of Catholics prefer to stay in the UK' The failure of the Celtic Tiger model seems to be a factor in this. It looks as if we may see the development of a Northern Irish identity which can't be defined in terms of the old sectarian oppositions.
Same oul' craic there mate, I've seen about 5 of those polls since the Celtic Tiger collapsed, similar result each time. There ain't but one poll that counts though, and that's the election. And somehow it just keeps coming back 45% Nationalist and growing. You can't just wish the problem away.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dried Fruit View Post
its not remotely scientific, but if you go onto some of the more mainstream Irish political forums where NI Catholics/Nationalists hang out, you'll often note that the greatest problem many of them have with the reality of unification is the loss of the NHS, and the fear of being run by a political system where FF and FG are the big political parties - many NI Catholics may not like 'da brits' much, but the idea of being run by Dublin doesn't appeal much either...

saying that, i imagine that the events of the last week or so haven't done a collective 'Northern Ireland Identity' any good.
The above point is rather easy to sort out, in a hypothetical United Ireland Sinn Féin would be by far the largest political party. So no Dublin domination there.

Completely agree with your last point though. Lot of angry people around down here, though it hasn't gotten much media coverage typically.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bish View Post
Yes, but it seems to have gone over the heads of many Republicans.
Of course, it's the Republicans that are to blame. The Republicans that abandoned armed campaigns in favour of peace on the understanding that their political views would be tolerated and the Republicans who still endeavour to find a peaceful solution when they find that the Unionist tradition is simply too immature to accept compromise. The Republicans who accept the occupation of their country in the name of peace and progress while the Unionists can't accept the lowering of their flag for the same causes. The Republicans are to blame of course, really, for existing. And ruining a perfectly good imperialist colonisation, a boon to John Bull's rapidly diminishing confidence and swagger.
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Old December 14th, 2012, 05:22 PM   #353

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We shouldn't get rid of the House of Lords. They're the ones who put checks on the Commons.
Aye right. Like we need them to keep us in check.
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Old December 15th, 2012, 12:53 AM   #354

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Quote:
Same oul' craic there mate, I've seen about 5 of those polls since the Celtic Tiger collapsed, similar result each time. There ain't but one poll that counts though, and that's the election. And somehow it just keeps coming back 45% Nationalist and growing. You can't just wish the problem away.
I have no more 'wishes' in this matter than if I were observing a quarrel in some island in the South Pacific; whatever the inhabitants of Northern Ireland decide on is fine by me, and it doesn't look as if they would vote to join the Republic in any referendum held in the near future.
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Old December 15th, 2012, 02:04 AM   #355
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Quote:
Originally Posted by General Michael Collins View Post
Ah where to begin, where to begin. I should have liked to set several points straight as the debate continued, but I was unfortunately suffering ISP problems and could only observe via mobile phone. Perhaps that's for the better though, because we can learn some very interesting (and sad) lessons from the discourse over the last number of pages..
O hail the mighty hero come to enlighten us poor SAD so ignorant of the real world.



Quote:
Originally Posted by General Michael Collins View Post
The tricolour is the flag of the Irish nation, as well as the Irish state. As such the Gaeil reserve the right to fly it as their banner wherever they might be found. I have explained this before, numerous times. Let me be absolutely clear here: Ireland is not a nation state.
Yes, they can fly there flag even on British soil, as much as that makes me sick. But not on buildings of the British government.

The island of Ireland is two nations. You can keep repeating this crap as much as you like. It doesn't make it so. When Scotland gets it independence, it will still be one of the nations of the British Isles. But it won't be a part of Great Britain and it won't fly the Union Flag. same thing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by General Michael Collins View Post
To be even more explicit, the nation of Ireland covers the entire island, and has done since its beginnings in the Ancient High Kingship. The ties that bound the nation - culture, language, identity - were not broken (though elements such as government and law fell) nor can they ever be completely destroyed at this point. West Belfast is even a Gaeltacht at this point .
Meanwhile, here in the 21st Century, things have changed. Isn't it time you and your ilk came out of the distant past.

Quote:
Originally Posted by General Michael Collins View Post
The Irish state has jurisdiction in 26 of the 32 counties..
Exactly, and not the other six.

Quote:
Originally Posted by General Michael Collins View Post
There lies the difference, don't have me explain it again...
O please enlighten us o wise one.

Quote:
Originally Posted by General Michael Collins View Post
Why? The Good Friday agreement was signed on the understanding that the era of the Orange state was over, and the era of mutual understanding and acceptance was approaching. Fundamental to the agreement was the permanent Republican ceasefire, a ceasefire given on the basis that Northern Ireland would be co-governed by both traditions.
A ceasefire that has been broken several times by the Republicans.


Quote:
Originally Posted by General Michael Collins View Post
Blatantly incorrect to the point of provocative. Only this week a report found that the British state directly ordered the murder of an innocent nationalist simply because he was the legal representative of the hunger strikers. And David Cameron still refuses further investigation. Britain's excesses were many and horrific, and they continue right up to the present day. David Cameron confirmed it this very week..
I wondered when someone would bring this up.

No, not incorrect. And you talk about provocative, that's rich.

According to the IRA, that were at war, a war in which that committed numerous war crimes. Yet now, they want to use the system of a government they despise to further there own ends. Which is nothing more than to embarrass the government. But why do we only hear about acts committed by the state. What happened to the reconciliation, putting aside the past. Why not have enquiries into the acts of the IRA. Because then James McGuiness would be up to his neck in it, and that won't help the situation.

The PM should never have said sorry for this act, and he should certainly not pander anymore to the Republicans and launch a full investigation. So, British forces colluded with the Loyalists. Ever heard the saying the enemy of my enemy is my friend (i believe you guys use something similar when talk turns to Ireland's links with Hitler). Well, i don't recall ever being targeted by Loyalist gunmen during my 4 and a half years there.





Quote:
Originally Posted by General Michael Collins View Post
What does that say Linschoten, that it is not dangerously inflammatory to Nationalist tradition to claim Northern Ireland for Britain? The two traditions either co-exist or they don't, what applies to one applies to the other. The Union Jack flies, then the Tricolour flies. The Union Jack stays down, then the Tricolour stays down. Simple fairness and equality, the basis of all agreements to date. Or are we barking up the wrong tree, signing agreements with 'Perfidious Albion'?..
That's just pathetic. Respecting other peoples traditions does not mean flying the flag of a foreign state. If Republicans want to live under the tricolor, no one is stopping them. Its just a quick hop over the border. According to your logic, we then should fly the flags of all the countries where immigrants in the UK come from.

Polish people living in the UK keep their traditions. We don't fly the Polish flag outside our government buildings.




Quote:
Originally Posted by General Michael Collins View Post
Back to war then, is it? What do you care for the people of Northern Ireland? Nothing but a conduit for your expression of chauvinist English imperialism, either tradition. Sit back relax, and let the Irishmen kill each other over your inferiority complex.
I would rather it went back to war then keep bending over and taking a shafting up the arse as we are doing now.



Do you know what makes me really sick. That's the way this has been all turned on its head. The republican movement, nothing more than a gang of thugs, crooks and drug runners, has been turned into this noble little band of Irish men with their harps, leprechauns and guinness, being violated and oppressed by the evil English who come over, rape your woman, kill your men and eat your babies.

And people like you sit there and try and take the moral high ground, spouting your propaganda. And meanwhile, gullible yanks all sit their and soak it up.

But i am sure you will be more than happy to come and enlighten us poor ignorant fools with more of the truth, whole truth and nothing but the truth.
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Old December 15th, 2012, 03:49 AM   #356

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Oh dear; we were having a (relatively) civilized discussion in this thread until the General came back! The curse of NI is the way in which everything is polarized, maybe it will be possible to pass beyond that with the passage of time.
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Old December 15th, 2012, 05:21 AM   #357

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Oh dear; we were having a (relatively) civilized discussion in this thread until the General came back! The curse of NI is the way in which everything is polarized, maybe it will be possible to pass beyond that with the passage of time.
A small point, Linschoten. Can't you see how 'polarized' YOUR statement is?
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Old December 15th, 2012, 05:21 AM   #358

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While I'm at it, are the mods asleep? Or are four letter words allowed in posts?

Abraham Lincoln, the first ever Republican president of the USA, once asked: 'How many legs has a dog if you call his tail a leg? Four! Calling a dog's tail a leg does not make it one.'
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Old December 15th, 2012, 05:52 AM   #359
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While I'm at it, are the mods asleep? Or are four letter words allowed in posts?

Abraham Lincoln, the first ever Republican president of the USA, once asked: 'How many legs has a dog if you call his tail a leg? Four! Calling a dog's tail a leg does not make it one.'
If 4 letter words are not allowed, you are in trouble.
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Old December 15th, 2012, 05:59 AM   #360

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Quote:
Originally Posted by General Michael Collins View Post



Here's the sad conclusion VR: further violence is inevitable.

Why? The Good Friday agreement was signed on the understanding that the era of the Orange state was over, and the era of mutual understanding and acceptance was approaching. Fundamental to the agreement was the permanent Republican ceasefire, a ceasefire given on the basis that Northern Ireland would be co-governed by both traditions.

Now, that ceasefire came into place, and the PIRA entered government. But we see now that nothing has changed on the Unionist side. No concession has in fact been made by the Unionist tradition, who, rather than choosing to cohabit the island with the Irish Gaels instead continue to deny their existence or more importantly, the existence and legitimacy of their political views. This is evident from recent weeks, where a democratically taken vote was insufficient to even remove a British flag in the eyes of very many unionists.

Thus the logical conclusion is fairly simple. If the Unionist tradition are still unwilling to recognise the legitimacy of the Nationalist tradition or even the need to peacefully cohabit the land with Irish nationalists, then why in the name of God should the IRA continue to support the partition regime? Unless democracy and compromise are brought to the fore of Unionist thought as they have long been at the fore of Nationalist thought, then there is no point in a power sharing government or pretence at toleration. The simple fact is that the Nationalist tradition would be better off undermining the Unionist position through violence.

Sad, but true. So if this craic continues in the North, there'll be much soul-searching amongst nationalists.






If you are right General and I suspect you are. Then it is going to be a sad return to the exchanging of gifts between the extremist elements of both communities in which the death toll of the previous Troubles will pale into insignificance as this time the British Army will not be present to act as a buffer zone. This time it will be a genuinely Irish conflict in which, happily, no more British soldiers will die. A depressing assesment GMC.
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