- Dec 29, 2010
Some things McGuinness said, such asYes you are. Do you have any evidence to support this claim?
Martin McGuinness: 'Most people don't care whether I was in the IRA or not' | The Independent"The IRA were involved in quite a number of incidents which resulted in the accidental killing of innocent people and the term used by the relatives of those people who were killed was that they were murdered," he says. "I wouldn't disagree with that. I'm not going to disagree with their analysis of what happened to their loved ones."
Is that the same as saying the IRA carried out murders? "It's the same as saying that I accept that, in the circumstances where innocent people lost their lives, then it's quite legitimate for the term murder to be used."
Was a wise move.No.
His movement from overt violence was not made willingly. There was no transformation on a road to Damascus, He only abandoned terrorism because the IRA had lost the war and he wanted to salvage what he could, both for his party and for himself.
As for "current Republican emphasis on the importance of equality" people should realise that they are using 1984-speak when they talk of equality. We saw their equality from Conor Murphy, Gildernew and Ruane.
Of course not. There was never any moral justification whatsoever for the sort of "offensive" violence we saw during the Troubles (that excludes the brief period in 1969-1970 when Nationalist areas were left at the mercy of pogroms by Loyalist mobs and had to be defended by any means necessary).Was it really necessary that people who had no say in the matter of the "armed struggle" had to be burnt to death, blown to pieces and shot dead in front of their families?
Northern Ireland Constitutional Proposals
Presented to Parliament by the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland by Command of Her Majesty,
(f) A Northern Ireland assembly or authority must be capable of involving all its members constructively in ways which satisfy them and those they represent that the whole community has a part to play in the government of the Province. As a minimum this would involve assuring minority groups of an effective voice and a real influence; but there are strong arguments that the objective of real participation should be achieved by giving minority interests a share in the exercise of executive power if this can be achieved by means which are not unduly complex or artificial, and which do not represent an obstacle to effective government.
I've been thinking about this during the week funny enough.By the lights of large strands of Nationalist tradition, Martin McGuinness was a great man, not only for his role as a peace-maker, but also for the determination, bravery and leadership he showed during the conflict.
One of the reasons why, on his death, McGuinness has been widely honoured is that, while the wider world, on the whole, believes that what McGuiness and the IRA did in the conflict was wrong, it accepts that a Republican viewpoint would see McGuinness’ actions as justified. Arlene Foster and Bill Clinton were doing what Martin Luther King articulated – “I judge a man by his principles, not my own”.
If you agree with my initial statement, you might want to consider the implications of “By the lights of …”. This implicitly recognises that there are other viewpoints. If we accept the principle of the equal worth of all people, then due weight has to be given to the full range of viewpoints and it is difficult to avoid the conclusion that we need move towards judging right and wrong, justice and injustice with due consideration to all viewpoints, to all people.
This would have been the final step in Martin McGuinness’ journey from conflict to peace. He would have recognised that, although the IRA’s actions were justified from a Republican point of view, they were not justified from other points of view – most importantly, from the point of views of the victims of the violence. And he would have come to conclusion that, in consequence of this and the fact that there were alternatives, the IRA violence was wrong.
Norman Tebbit has stated very publicly that he believes that McGuinness never made this step, never “atoned for his crimes.” I myself believe that McGuinness did complete his journey and did realise that it would have been better if there had been no IRA violence.
Why do I believe this? McGuinness acknowledged publicly that those bereaved by the IRA generally see the killings as murder. McGuinness was an intelligent man and would know that current Republican emphasis on the importance of equality implies that this viewpoint is no less valid than the Republican viewpoint. Hence, it follows that one cannot make any simple conclusion that the killings were right. And if they were not right, then they were wrong.
If so, then why did McGuinness not express some regret? One possible answer is simply that it was not yet the right time. Republicans were both perpetrators and victims of the violence. It is only human nature that dead friends and family weight more heavily in our minds than dead strangers. When you feel that, overall, you are the wronged one, it is difficult to say sorry.
I believe that, together with McGuinness and Paisley, most of us here have completed the journey. Most of us would agree that, as Vivabrigada puts it, “it wasn’t worth a single life.” Again, we, on all sides, find it difficult to say sorry, but we do wish that “many things had been done differently.”
I have two questions.
Firstly, for anyone who disagrees with Vivabrigida’s statement – is this possibly because you are seeing things only from a distance, from far away from Belfast or only from the present time?
Secondly – do you agree that McGuinness completed such a journey from conflict to peace?
That was nothing more than acknowledging a terrible truth of "war" that the innocent are often slaughtered. I love the film the Dambusters and yet when you reflect the object of the mission was mans bravery to slaughter civilians....and industry." the accidental killing of innocent people and the term used by the relatives of those people who were killed was that they were murdered"
I have never disregarded any victims or their views or feelings. I have great sympathy for all the victims. I would put it to you that all of us are victims of misrule and discrimination and reprisals even Martin mc Guinness. But I thought this thread was about Martin mc Guinness.@derryman
You seem to be disregarding totally the views and interests of the victims of Republican violence. Why should your views be so much more important than theirs? Or perhaps I am being unfair and you are taking their views into consideration. If so, please let me know.
I disagree. The bombing and killing were not defensive - they were attacks on people outside his community. Moreover, they gave rise to reprisals from Loyalists and oppressive security measures from the state - reprisals and measures that could have been predicted, and in fact were so predicted and even wished for by PIRA strategy ("ungovernable except by colonial policing methods").He was protecting his community. That's where he started out. And finished.
In a war, the killing of non combatants is murder for many, or collateral damage for those who spin.Some things McGuinness said, such as
Martin McGuinness: 'Most people don't care whether I was in the IRA or not' | The Independent
The object of the mission was to destroy the Dams for sound strategic reasons, not to "slaughter civilians", though it was inevitable that some civilians would die. In the context of the most destructive war in human-history, and given that the defeat of Nazism was an absolute moral necessity, posing as it did an existentitial threat to the world, and that for every day the war continued literally tens of thousands of lives were being lost anyway, it was not an unreasonable action.That was nothing more than acknowledging a terrible truth of "war" that the innocent are often slaughtered. I love the film the Dambusters and yet when you reflect the object of the mission was mans bravery to slaughter civilians....and industry.
I'll head now, I've no wish to spend hours debating something which is plainly (to me) so obvious and fundamental to the whole discussion on McGuinnes and "the troubles". I do not agree with your viewpoint, it's not based on the reality at that time for a community treated with contempt that resulted with gerrymandering supported from London.I disagree. The bombing and killing were not defensive - they were attacks on people outside his community. Moreover, they gave rise to reprisals from Loyalists and oppressive security measures from the state - reprisals and measures that could have been predicted, and in fact were so predicted and even wished for by PIRA strategy ("ungovernable except by colonial policing methods").
He's a very dishonest poster. Move on, Ger.I'll head now, I've no wish to spend hours debating something which is plainly (to me) so obvious and fundamental to the whole discussion on McGuinnes and "the troubles". I do not agree with your viewpoint, it's not based on the reality at that time for a community treated with contempt that resulted with gerrymandering supported from London.
Redrawn boundaries introduced to restrict voting rights. Protestant dominance ensured at the polls.
We are a people who suffered for hundreds of years under a brutal colonisation, that imprint doesn't just disappear.
The problem with that is you can flip it on its head and accuse the Loyalist/British side of making the PIRA inevitable...which gets us nowhere. You're asking did McGuinness complete his journey, ask why did he set foot on the journey in the first place?I disagree. The bombing and killing were not defensive - they were attacks on people outside his community. Moreover, they gave rise to reprisals from Loyalists and oppressive security measures from the state - reprisals and measures that could have been predicted, and in fact were so predicted and even wished for by PIRA strategy ("ungovernable except by colonial policing methods").
NO, we are at different starting points. I believe that no man is an island. No community is an island and no one idea exists. I believe all my actions and positions are subject to the actions and decisions made by others. I have many ideals that conflict with others but in order for me to live by those ideals others must act by the same ideals. Such as my opposition to violence and my will to live in a secure environment. If I live in a community that has chosen violence and it is visited upon me I might deny my opposition to violence in order to protect my desire to live in a secure environment.Supra, InsideImDancing,
You may be missing an important point, one that McGuinness, amongst others, seemed to be coming to accept (though I may be mistaken in this) - namely that, for issues such as the question of whether violence is justified in a particular situation, it is not enough to consider one's own opinions about the matter. It is also important to consider the opinions of other people - particularly if they are going to be the victims.
You would not accept an analysis of Bloody Sunday that considered only the opinions of the likes of Soldier F, without consideration of those who died. Why, then, when addressing the question of whether PIRA's campaign was justified, do you seem not consider the opinions of the people and communities targeted by the violence?
Perhaps I am being unfair on you. I realise that I will have only a very limited picture of your thoughts, which may well be more nuanced than the necessarily brief comments here (which I may in any case be failing to fully understand).
The peace process was about the second stage of using violence to extort a concession. The value proposition is in offering peace once violence is demonstrated.I don't believe that McGuiness sought to atone for anything. In the early part of his life he believed that violence was the best means to achieve one's aims. In the later decades of his life he reallsed the futility of such violence and as such pursued a differeent path. It really is as simple as that.