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From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Beacon) Newsgroups: alt.law-enforcement,alt.politics.org.fbi,misc.legal,us.legal,uk.legal Subject: Irish American Post: IRA Does Double-Talk on Terrorism By David Trimble Date: 10 Nov 2003 17:12:58 -0800 Organization: http://groups.google.com Message-ID: <email@example.com> NNTP-Posting-Host: 22.214.171.124 NNTP-Posting-Date: Tue, 11 Nov 2003 01:12:59 +0000 (UTC) "IRA Does Double-Talk on Terrorism." The Irish American Post. Nov./Dec. 2002. vol. 3, iss. 5. By David Trimble, Special to The Irish American Post To its numerous American backers and to officials in the American government, Sinn Féin, the political wing of the Irish Republican Army, is adept at speaking the language of reason and reconciliation. But Sinn Féin speaks to its Irish followers through its in-house newspaper, An Phoblacht, from the other side of its mouth. [Just like arafat and the PLO saying one thing in English and the opposite in arabic. Ed.] The IRA's lengthy connections with people such as Moammar Gadhafi and the Basque separatist group ETA are well known. The arrest of three Irish republicans in Colombia on suspicion of collaborating with FARC narco-terrorists demonstrates that, despite the IRA "cessation," it is unable or unwilling to sever such ties. What is truly remarkable is that even after Sept. 11, 2001, the Irish republican press remains as anti-American as ever. Perhaps even more surprising is that it continues to get away with it. On hearing the news of the 9/11 attacks, Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams told his followers in the United States that this was "ethically indefensible terrorism." But away from American eyes and ears, an editorial in An Phoblacht on Sept. 12 made it clear what Irish republicans really thought about the attacks. They were indeed "atrocities," but there was "an even greater danger" that the U.S. government would "lash out and make innocent civilians in other countries pay for what it is describing as an act of war. . . . We only know too well," it was claimed, "how in the Middle East and in Central America the pursuit of a militaristic and aggressive policy by U.S. governments and by those governments it sponsored led to the deaths of innocent people." And to whom did they apportion the blame? "The perpetrators of the atrocities in Washington and New York may well have had their origins in the political disaster area which is the Middle East. But it is a disaster for which the 'West' and its client governments bear much responsibility." Sinn Féin's hostility to America was applied not just to conservatives or perceived hard-liners. In 1995, there was a bitter personal attack on Gen. Colin Powell. Nobel Peace Prize winner Jimmy Carter should, in the opinion of An Phoblacht, appear before a war crimes tribunal, and Bill Clinton has been attacked for his "endless display of military might." In the past seven years, there have been at least 30 articles attacking U.S. policy toward Cuba and also anti-American articles regarding Panama, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala. In August 2001, Douglas Hamilton, effectively An Phoblacht's Cuban correspondent, wrote of the "murderous nature of U.S. foreign policy" and of "glaring imperialist intervention, whether it be in Palestine, the Balkans, East Timor, Colombia, or Iraq." This sentiment has, if anything, intensified in the past year. The war in Afghanistan with its "indiscriminate bombings," it was argued, "violates international law." In July, a correspondent attacked President Bush's continued support for Israel and warned that the "international community can no longer close its eyes to Israeli state terrorism." Its support for Yasser Arafat was unambiguous. This is not the work of rogue intellectuals at the fringes of the republican movement. An Phoblacht is part of a well-oiled Sinn Féin party machine. It is perhaps for this reason that the most stinging personal attack on Bush was published in Gaelic. "Bush As Smacht," an article published in February, translated into English simply as "Bush Is Out of Control." "We already know that George W. Bush is out of his mind," ran the translation, "and he is inclined to make difficulties worse instead of solving them. It seems likely that the Bush authority wants to keep the world under control with the biggest bombs he has." At the same time, Sinn Féin representative Aengus O Snodaigh -- recently elected to the Irish Parliament with the help of the American money that has made Sinn Féin the best-funded party in Western Europe -- has made no secret of the fact that Sinn Féin opposes the Irish government's permission to the U.S. Air Force to use Shannon Airport for refueling as part of its preparations for possible military intervention in Iraq. Irish republicans are, of course, entitled to their view. But one wonders whether any other group expressing such views would also be entitled to access to the White House and millions of American dollars. After the recent alleged discovery of an IRA spy ring at the heart of the Northern Ireland government, Prime Minister Tony Blair is effectively calling for the disbanding of the IRA. The question is whether the continued support and assistance that Irish republicans receive in the United States is any sort of incentive for the IRA to comply with these demands. Sinn Féin raised $500,000 at a single dinner recently in New York. Sadly, it is money that will be paid for in blood elsewhere in the world. David Trimble is leader of the Ulster Unionist Party, first minister of the suspended Northern Ireland Assembly and a Nobel Peace Prize laureate (1998).
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