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Sinn Féin getting fairly shown up here regarding this welfare reform farce. Seems like they've been caught out spoofing to their electorate and the facts about it are stacking up against them. IMO, it looks like that they've cooked this up to try and win votes from the vulnerable people who would be interested in the welfare reform (that they claim to be looking out for) and they've been caught out. It was either a lie, or they just got the facts and finances completely wrong. Either way their excuses reek of

This is why folks need to protest vote and vote Alliance or Green. It's clear the DUP and Sinn Féin aren't capable of being realistic in running the place. The DUP and their backward views, then Sinn Féin and their blatant spoofing. I don't understand why people cant see through it all.

I don't think I need to go in to reasons why the DUP shouldn't get any votes, but their views on equality is reason enough, alone. Sinn Féin make these wondrous claims to win votes (it would seem by preying on the vulnerable, in this case, and people who actually have real issues and shouldn't be used as political ammunition)... then you've got the stories of SF being involved in IRA sex abuse.

People need to use their vote to show that we don't want this nonsense any more. Stop the tribal nonsense and use your vote to damage these two main parties. It's the only way things will change.

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www.bbc.co.uk/news/wor... lol

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We know him by his noise.

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Guy that was shot in Carrick

m.facebook.com/story.p...

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lol@Party for the Animals cless

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His last post before being shot

The days of the uda putting people out of Carrick are over....

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Instantly saw that party also, RJ lol

"The Party for the Animals (PvdD) is the first political party in the world that does not put the short-term interests of man in the pivotal position, but the entire planet and all her inhabitants instead."

www.partyfortheanimals.nl

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Why do grown adults put stuff like that on Facebook?

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Naomi Long says another election would be 'vanity project' - www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-...

Think there'd be much change in parties votes if there was another election? I can't see the point in having another one. Don't think the numbers would change all that much and it'd just be prolonging things.

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Don't get the logic. Why don't they just to spend the time and effort putting a deal together instead of all the election stuff

Not to mention any good will built up will get lost in the campaigning

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Aul Martys death and top RA man funeral is bound to give SF a wee boost.

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I dunno if the two big parties would see any increase. Bound to be a lot of people who voted for them now seeing that, as usual, nothing much has changed and everything's still in deadlock/red lined, and they'll either not bother voting or give it elsewhere.

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Disagree, i think both would increase. SF are on a bit of a roll and DUP would swallow up UUP with the fear of SF becoming the largest party

If SF had encouraged transferring the votes all way down the ballot. They'd have got McCann in in Derry at expense of DUP and they'd be on the same number of seats

I don't think that would be a factor in a new election though, could see UUP wiped off the stage

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Marching an Olympic sport now?

Fair play to Cyril

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A Winter Olympic sport at that.

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Fair play to Cyril representing Ireland and not GB, and for meeting Arnie. I hope he has been taught the national anthem now too, hopefully they can incorporate that in the band's set list for next year. www.irishtimes.com/new...

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local DUP man in here saying were going to direct rule, both SF & DUP wont budge on their main issues

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Most likely RJ. The only thing that is unknown is whether there's another election before the direct rule. There isn't current legislation for direct rule either which will have to go through parliament. Hard to know what will happen if direct rule comes in. The vacuum could spark violence.

It could be that the British government give into SF requests on equality and implementation of things that have been not implemented from previous agreements and that might get things back up and running but how would the DUP react to that?

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His thinking and those of his mates in the DUP is back to direct rule, dissidents kick off pop a few people forcing the SF back to the table in a weaker position

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SF demands IMO are not unreasonable: gay marriage, Irish language act, equality etc. So even if dissidents decide to kill a few people those demands won't change the electorate are backing SF to the hilt on them.

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Surely those policies aren't all solely SF? As much as i hate the Tories I'd take them over this shambles. Shit when the Tories seem a better option ffs

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Fucking hell. New low Muzka

Shaming these letters

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You love it uuuu slag

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Is the legacy issue not one of if not the main ones? SF want prosecution for historical deaths in the troubles?

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yeah whats with that, they want government accountability for unlawful killings yet the IRA get a clean sweep!? aye fuck off m8, it was a war, you killed a load of them and they killed a load of you, get over it

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You tell em RJ. Gurny cunts need to dry their eyes.

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Prosecutions is right. The British are happy to peddle the myth that they were innocent and they always will do unless they're prosecuted

Nobody would serve time but it would provide a level of justice I suppose for relatives

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erm.. justice for the relatives of combatants or innocent people? innocent people yes by all means the government should be held accountable but killing terrorists? nah fuck their relatives

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Did you not listen to Gerry, they weren't terrorists.

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Just get another 60 comments up on this thread and get the mods to lock it. It would sum every thing up perfectly for our tribal politics situation.

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'If politicians don't make a deal happen the money has to stop' - Naomi Long on Stormont stalemate

audioboom.com/posts/57...

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So we should forget for example McGuiness' past and focus on what he did for peace but the past where people got killed by other parties should be investigated and people convicted?

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interesting blog -

"Over the past six years, much attention has been paid to NATO’s military, financial and logistical support of Islamic extremists in Africa and the Middle East.

Under the guise of a ‘revolution’ these fanatics turned Libya, a once thriving country, into a lawless wasteland; and in Syria, the only secular country in the Middle East, ‘moderate rebels’ have imposed Sharia law in areas under their control, beheading civilians for the most minor of transgressions.

Despite the Western media narrative, the funding of these extremists had very little to do with introducing ‘democracy’. Rather it was US/NATO hegemonic interests that were at stake.

In Libya, Muammar Gaddafi had planned on introducing a new Gold Dinar currency which would have ended any reliance on the US Dollar. Likewise in Syria, Bashar al-Assad did not accede to US-ally Qatar’s plans to build a pipeline through the country. Both nations quickly found themselves overrun with Western-backed Jihadists.

Although it was the Obama administration that led the coalition of support for these terrorists, the British government also played a key role. The RAF effectively acted as Al-Qaeda’s air force when they helped impose the No-Fly zone over Libya in 2011, and British Special Forces provided weapons and training to ‘Syrian rebels’ — a policy that still continues to this day.

This support of Al-Qaeda and ISIS was not Britain’s first dalliance with extremist groups however, nor was it when Margaret Thatcher infamously told the Mujahideen ‘The Hearts of the free world are with you’ on a visit to the Pakistan/Afghanistan border in 1981, instead Britain had begun a policy a decade earlier of supporting fanatics on their own doorstep; Loyalist death squads in the North of Ireland, determined to remain under British rule, and who like their Wahhabi-counterparts would also carry out no-warning bomb attacks and mass-shootings targeting innocent civilians.

An emerging conflict

Formal relations between Loyalist terrorists and the British security services first began in 1971. The North of Ireland had been in the grip of violence for the past two years; the fledgling Civil Rights Movement, established in 1967 to gain equal rights for the North’s Nationalist community, had been met with violence every time they took to the street, being beaten and tear-gassed by a predominantly Unionist police force.

Loyalists, perceiving the call for equal rights as an upsurge in Republican sympathies, established the Ulster Defence Association (UDA) in September 1971, ostensibly to protect Unionist communities from attacks by the Provisional IRA (a small group at the time, but with growing support). The Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF), a similar organisation, had formed 5 years earlier under similar circumstances, fearing that the 50th Anniversary commemorations of the 1916 Easter Rising would lead to a re-invigorated IRA campaign.

The British Army, deployed to the North of Ireland under the pretences of being a neutral peacekeeping force, quickly took sides in the emerging conflict. The Military Reaction Force (MRF), a clandestine unit made up of former Special Forces members, was established in order to trigger a civil war between the Nationalist and Unionist communities, in the hope that if the IRA was drawn into a feud with Loyalist factions it would draw their attention away from Crown Forces.

To this end, the MRF carried out dozens of extra-judicial killings of Nationalists, the modus operandi being random drive-by shootings, with the intended result being that the UDA or UVF would be blamed.

The Unit would work directly with Loyalists however, on the night of December 4th 1971. That night the MRF organised for British Army checkpoints to be cleared from the New Lodge, a staunchly Republican area of Belfast, thus allowing the UVF to bomb a local pub, McGurk’s Bar, leaving 15 civilians dead. This attack would mark the beginning of official British state-collusion with Loyalist death squads, in a conflict that would soon escalate to unforeseen levels.

Conflict escalation and the Dublin and Monaghan bombings

Following the Bloody Sunday massacre in January 1972, in which British Paratroopers gunned down 14 protesters at a civil rights demonstration in Derry, recruitment to the IRA mushroomed.

Attacks against Crown Forces became much more frequent and deadly, and the organisation also began a bombing campaign against economic targets in England. To effectively combat this use of guerrilla warfare, Britain knew they would need the co-operation of the Irish government.

The 26 Counties Administration however, had begun to dissent from its traditionally pro-British viewpoint. Following the outbreak of violence in 1969, then-Taoiseach Jack Lynch had threatened to send Troops to the North in order to defend Nationalist communities, and in the aftermath of Bloody Sunday, Irish police stood by as protesters burned down the British Embassy in Dublin.

Britain, fearing that Leinster House would become a state-sponsor of the IRA, decided that a message had to be sent.

On the 17th of May 1974, 3 no-warning bombs detonated during rush-hour traffic in Dublin. 27 people were killed and more than 250 were injured. A further 7 people died when another bomb exploded ninety minutes later in the border county of Monaghan. This would be the largest loss of life in any single day during the conflict.

Although they wouldn’t claim responsibility until 1993, it was widely known that the UVF had carried out the attacks in collusion with the Special Reconnaissance Unit (SRU), the successor to the MRF (re-organised following an IRA ambush in 1972).

The SRU, unlike its predecessor, did not engage in direct attacks on the Nationalist community, but did still maintain connections with the UVF, who despite their assertions that they would only target IRA members, were almost exclusively killing civilians.

In the aftermath of the bombings, the Dublin administration quickly toed the line when it came to the North, and there were no further attacks on the same scale in the 26 Counties.

In the Six Counties however, the UVF would still continue their genocidal campaign against the Nationalist population, and Britain would continue to use the group as Proxy, a policy that would eventually grow to incorporate the UDA as well with the formation of the Force Research Unit (FRU).

The Force Research Unit

As Margaret Thatcher was helping Ronald Reagan to arm the forerunners of Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan during the 1980s, she was also helping to arm fanatics on her own doorstep as well.

The UDA, like the UVF, was engaged in a campaign of ethnic cleansing against the Nationalist community under the guise of combating the IRA. Both groups routinely carried out executions of Nationalists, many of whom were often chosen at random, with the rationale offered that this would lead to pressure being put on the IRA to end their armed campaign.

Although it had not yet carried out the same high-profile attacks as its counterpart, the UDA was a significantly larger organisation than the UVF, counting 40,000 members at its peak. It was not long before Britain began to see the group’s potential for use as a proxy. Thus the Force Research Unit was born.

A covert unit in the same vein as MRF and SRU, the purpose of the FRU was to turn the UDA into a more ‘professional’ force, one which would solely target IRA members.

To implement this strategy they recruited Brian Nelson, a senior UDA figure, as a double-agent. In 1985, Nelson was sent to South Africa to organise an arms shipment from Armscor, the official defence contractor of the then-Apartheid State. This deal led to a deadly escalation of the UDA’s murderous campaign, with very few IRA members being targeted, and would ultimately result in the killing of human rights Lawyer Pat Finucane.

Finucane, a Belfast native, had gained prominence through representing several high profile Republicans, including those who had took part in the 1981 H-block hunger strike. This drew the ire of the British establishment, with the final straw coming in November 1988 when Finucane successfully defended an IRA Volunteer against charges relating to the deaths of 2 British soldiers.

On the 12th of February 1989, a UDA unit smashed down the front door of Pat Finucane’s family home and shot him 14 times as he had Sunday dinner with his wife and children.

Only four weeks previously, Thatcher cabinet member Douglas Hogg had given a speech in the House of Commons, lamenting that there was solicitors in the North of Ireland who were ‘unduly sympathetic to the cause of the IRA’. Finucane’s death warrant had effectively been signed by the highest levels of government.

Ceasefire and the return of the death squads?

As the 1990s dawned, the UDA were still using the weapons from South Africa to devastating effect, carrying out several massacres with high-powered assault rifles, including the Seán Graham’s bookmakers’ shootings and the Greysteel massacre. The UVF, which had also received a part of the arms shipment, was also carrying out similar atrocities.

Following the Provisional IRA ceasefire in August 1994 however, both groups called a halt to their murderous campaign. Under the auspices of the ‘Combined Loyalist Military Command’, the UVF and UDA declared that they would ‘cease all operational hostilities’ from the 13th of October 1994.

This was not to say that both groups ceased to exist however, indeed they still maintain a presence on the streets of Occupied Ireland today, though in the years following the ceasefire they mainly turned their guns on each other, with dozens of Loyalists being killed in bouts of internecine feuding.

The British intelligence services also remain in the North, despite claims that ‘peace’ has returned; MI5 have been operational in the Six Counties since 2007, and the Special Reconnaissance Regiment (the successor to the SRU) has been deployed since 2009.

Taking these factors into account, as well as Britain’s historical use of proxy terror groups, it is inevitable what will happen if there is once again a widespread armed uprising against British rule in Ireland (a distinct possibility should a ‘hard-border’ be imposed post-Brexit).

If popular support for militant Republicanism returns, so will the death squads."

medium.com/@gavinoreil...

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SF logic

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Aye Glennzer. Just investigate the Brits

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Naomi Long only one talking sense as per usual. Stop the money and what whose mugs do.

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'See'

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everyone should be held accountable. reality is the government should be more so than any proscribed organisation as they would call them.

not like anyone going to go to jail as they serve minimum if even them be out under 2 years.

I think it's only fair. Brits had their hands in all sorts of pies. We even had British soldiers on BBC before admitting to openly flying about the west back in 1970''s openly shooting people in the street. people who weren't even involved in anything. just walking about. and that's without even getting into the collusion aspect which is huge.

I think it's fair that all sides should open up. Brits have more to lose tho as the others have already owned up to most of the stuff they've done and have had huge amounts of members go to jail. Not sure why the brits should get a get out of jail card. anyone who ever got convicted got short terms then promoted in the army when they got out. think we are talking about a handful of peeople over 25 years.

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Just agree to a full open book on the legacy issue, its the only thing that would work if we truly are set on 'dealing with the past' as they say. The problem with everyone at the minute is that each party need to be seen to be on the side of victims, but scratch the surface on either side it seems its only for their victims, their side. Otherwise its a case of amnesty for all and we move on.

I have read recently that the pressure on the armed forces on legacy recently has been a slightly underhanded move to get them to agree to open up the books. Leaning on them a little so that they are forced to agree on a truth commission or similar or face the threat of prosecution.

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Stop talking sense baz it sounds too much like a radial republican agenda

Glenn will be on now calling you sectarian.

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Baz/RP I agree everyone should be held accountable but that's not what's being pushed for and it's never going to happen

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There's wee MuzakIRA straight in

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my understanding is the shinners are calling for it across the board like a truth commission

I always found it baffling when the talk of the state comes up with this topic it tended to get turned into some sort of side debate purely because sinn fein mentioned it. nobody should be against it at all and it shouldn't be a topic which comes back to but sure what about this victim and that victim of that side or this side.

only way to solve it is have it all out on the table. they won't even agree to it. couldn't have their name tarred with the Ra or loyalists. they be open to all sorts

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lol @ radical republican agenda. my favourite quote this year

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when SF are saying the legacy issue signed up to is not being respected what exactly was signed up to?

Is this all about the release of funds for legal aid to victims families??

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Is that what the Shinners want? A fully open book on all killings by all parties? Are we going to hear how many St McGuinness killed? If that’s the case then yes I agree all cards should be on the table

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I thought there was also something to do with having IRA murderers who were killed by security forces whilst planting a bomb given “victim” status which to be perfectly honest is a fucking laughable joke, you don’t get to play the victim just cause you happened to be killed whilst trying to murder innocent civilians.

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pretty sure they've said they are all for a turth commission. Also want equal status for everyone.

but again not sure what they or loyalists have got to do with the state opening up and admitting being a huge problem during the troubles. with the others everyone already knows what they are about and as I've said thousands have went thru the courts. firstly the state are meant to protect the people they govern.

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tell me this RJ would you class the army then as victims?

even tho they've had plenty of innocent blood on their hands indirectly and directly?

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