News Ian O'Doherty

Wednesday 17 September 2014

Sinn Féin / IRA – you know who you are

Published 28/02/2014 | 02:30

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John Downey

In times of crisis, panic. That's the human response to troubled times and rational, clear thinking goes out the window as people become so consumed with anger and resentment they make bad choices.

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That's why we see so many demonstrably unfit TDs in our national parliament today. Indeed, you only have to look at Mick Wallace's bizarre and juvenile rant at Alan Shatter this week to see how this anger and resentment can propel the most unlikely, and the most unsuitable, people into positions of national prominence.

Wallace, the multi-millionaire property developer with the creative attitude towards paying tax, went off on one against Shatter the other day and whinged: "Minister you look up here at us and you say: 'How dare those people with their long hair and raggy jeans have the audacity to challenge you?'"

Frankly, it was the equivalent of looking at an angry teenager with a chip on his shoulder bitterly complaining about The Man not taking him seriously because he refuses to wear a suit. It was classic Wallace, playing the passive-aggressive victim while indulging in the self-aggrandising preening and posturing so common to those protest-vote TDs who have benefited from public discontent to find themselves elevated far beyond their abilities.

The increasingly beleaguered Shatter, who is so determined to become the architect of his own downfall that he now resembles a hapless Sideshow Bob constantly walking onto garden rakes and smacking himself in the face, must have been delighted to be given such a free pass from the Wexford TD. After all, whatever points he may have scored at the Minister's expense were lost in the white noise of him squawking like a wounded teenager whose main political contribution is looking like a bum.

But say what you like about Wallace – and Lord knows, I have – there are certain things that you can't take away from him. He is, for example, widely recognised as a basically decent bloke and a good boss who inspires loyalty in his employees. And in these troubled times, being a basically decent bloke and a good boss still count for something.

Which is a lot more than can be said for the terrorist lovers in Sinn Féin, who are showing us their real nature this week. In the febrile, chaotic mood that has existed in the Dáil for the last few years, it's easy to think that they're just another collection of politicians who have benefited from an electorate so pissed off that they are prepared to forget their history. In fact, watching the perfectly presentable Pearse Doherty and his cohort Mary Lou McDonald, you could nearly convince yourself that they belong to a respectable, legitimate party.

We're meant to forget the fact that their leader is a dissembling, fact-fudging terrorist who displays all the insouciance and wounded indignation of a sociopath who thinks he is above the law. We're meant to forget the fact that Sinn Féin represents savages, fascists, gun runners and killers. We're meant to forget the fact that as their Dear Leader flounces through the Dáil pretending to be Nelson Mandela, families wake up every day missing a loved one because of him.

In other words, we're meant to forget everything we ever thought we knew about Sinn Féin/IRA.

They want us to believe they are a centre-Left party that offers the kind of idiotic economic solutions that would get you laughed out of a first year college debating team. They want us to believe that they are just another regular party representing the common man. Hey, their mantra, goes, we're pissed off just as much as you are. And so they engage in bar-stool politics designed to appeal to the lowest common denominator – and by 'lowest common denominator', I mean morons.

The cynical part of me is even half convinced that they are happy to spout nonsensical policies because it's a deflection that makes them look no better or worse than any of the other intellectually bankrupt political parties. But as much as they would like us all to forget their past and the vast reservoir of blood that still drips from their hands, every now and then their mask slips and they remind us exactly what they are – terrorist lovers masquerading as democrats.

So this column would like to extend a big hug and a hearty dollop of gratitude to Pearse Doherty for reminding us all just what they are really like.

Because, just in case you missed it yesterday, young Pearse and his cronies are having a celebratory homecoming for John Downey.

Obviously, and I am happy to point this out, Downey was not convicted of the 1982 Hyde Park atrocity that left four people dead.

In fact, Downey was so completely and totally innocent of involvement in the murders that the British Government even went so far as to write him a nice letter informing him that he wouldn't face prosecution – yet another example of how the price of 'peace' is exorbitant.

That's the ugly, unvarnished truth of the peace process and it's something people are told they must accept. If that doesn't stick in your craw and cause your moral compass to start oscillating wildly – to borrow an old Cure song – then it should.

But as the North heads into a full-blown crisis as a result of the collapse of Downey's trial last Friday, Doherty and his cohorts are having a bit of a do for him in the Lagoon Bar in Donegal tomorrow night to: "Thank the hundreds of people in Ireland and further afield" who helped pay for Downey's legal team.

Frankly, I would have thought they had enough spare cash floating around after the Northern Bank job to pay for a defence, but that's a story for another day. No, the story for today is a simple one – thank you Pearse Doherty.

Because just when they were beginning to convince some credulous fools that they were a legitimate party with legitimate points to make, they show their true colours and those colours are drenched in red.

And before the Shinners get up on their hind legs and start barking about the media being unfair to them, maybe they should ask themselves one simple question – would any party, in either of the Irelands or on the British mainland, throw a hooley for a suspected terrorist and suspected murderer who is only not facing trial because of cynical, political expedience?

I think we all know the answer to that..

Remember that the next time one of these clowns knocks on your door looking for your vote.

Because this is what a vote for Sinn Féin really means.

Irish Independent

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