Provisional IRA during the Troubles: Freedom fighters or terrorists?

Opinion of PIRA?

  • Freedom fighters/heroes

    Votes: 5 15.2%
  • Terrorists

    Votes: 28 84.8%

  • Total voters
Mar 2016
I'm sure that to some Catholic Irish they were freedom fighters and heroes, but to me they were terrorists, and I say that as someone that has Irish heritage and is a baptised Catholic. But I don't care what your motives are or how just you think your crusade is, when you bomb and shoot innocent people, you are nothing more than a terrorist that deserves to be treated as such. The best thing Thatcher ever did was let those terrorists starve themselves and rot in jail as common criminals.


Forum Staff
Feb 2009
Eastern PA
Terrorists, for sure.

Once enough time has elapsed, history will probably end up calling them freedom fighters and/or revolutionaries. Every revolution was started by people using terrorism tactics. If they are unsuccessful, they are remembered as terrorists, if successful they are revolutionaries or freedom fighters.
Nov 2018
Irish patriots or terrorist, really depends on what side your rooting for. The way the brithish treated them as second class citizens for the longest times , what do people expect, you cant put down people for so long and not expect a violent response.
Terrorist is an Imperial term of the aggressive conquerors.

Its also propaganda.

What invading nations mean when they call people terrorists is to demonize those who don't have the resources or infrastructure to fight in the classical field of war, i.e what used to be called "rebels".

The Romans would of called the Gauls terrorists, the Turks would of called the Arabian tribes that in WWI, Edward Longshanks would of called the Scots an equivalent.

Yet if you meet them with tanks, guns and Jet planes its a war between two armies, if you can't afford Tanks and Jets your a terrorist.

Its the same attitude and disdain the ruling classes have had for "peasant" armies from before the time of Line Infantry.
That would be a conflict between two professional armies, not murderous attacks on civilians. There's a difference, even though you're obviously ignoring it.
.............. sooooo, America for example didn't kill innocent civilians when they bombed the crap out of Iraq? or Hiroshima?

Or are you going to use the " wasn't deliberate" excuse? even though they know damn well civilians are there.

Are you going to ignore that the IRA targeted soldiers just as much as any bombs on street corners?

No, what your ignoring here are that not every rebel army attacks civilians (see American War of Independence) and not every Professional army doesn't target civilians (See Yugolslavia, Nazi Germany).

You really didn't think this one through did you?

What you said wasn't even my point, my point was that Kingdoms / Countries with professional armies label rebels who can't afford a professional army "terrorists" whether they target civilians or not and they've been doing that for centuries.
Likes: M.S. Islam


Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
if they keep their violence to military personnel on their home turf , that's freedom fighters , somehow
killing indiscriminately anywhere else is terrorism
the IRA introduced the two steps bombing
the second explosion being delayed for a quarter of an hour to kill rescue workers and ambulance staff
Likes: Futurist

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