Leading Article: Now three cheers for peace are in order
Friday 11 September 1998
Meanwhile, what has been called the choreographing of the Northern Ireland peace process continued, with the removal of soldiers from the streets of Belfast. This is spin doctoring in its highest and most morally elevated form: the managing of news and manipulation of opinion in the cause of reconciliation.
Last week, we saw the happy coincidence of Mr Adams renouncing violence as "over, done with and gone" with President Clinton's visit to Omagh. And the ground for the release of former terrorist prisoners was smoothed by the release of two former soldiers.
Step by interlocking step, the paramilitaries and their political representatives are being tied into the treadmill of legitimacy. The announcement of a permanent ceasefire by the "Real IRA" leaves only the "Continuity IRA" still fighting its war against what they imagine to be British colonial power in Northern Ireland. And the Continuity IRA is one of the least successful terrorist organisations, having never killed anyone (not, unfortunately, for want of trying).
Paradoxically, the Omagh bomb and the killing of three boys at the time of the Drumcree march now seem like the final, perverse acts of madness in a drama which is drawing to a close. There are difficult issues to come, above all that of IRA disarmament, but the prospects for lasting peace are now better than they have been since the Troubles began. For which we can thank Mr Trimble and Mr Adams, and their willingness to do business.
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Paul Scholes: Manchester City were so good against Liverpool I felt like turning the television off
- 2 Notting Hill Carnival: Woman shares selfie after being ‘punched in face for telling man to stop groping her’
- 3 Pamela Anderson rejects ice bucket challenge because of ALS experiments on animals: 'Mice had holes drilled into their skulls'
- 4 Homer Simpson takes the ALS ice bucket challenge because of course he does
- 5 Hello Kitty is not a cat after all
Great British Bake Off, episode 4, review: Heat gets turned up as Iain goes into meltdown
Great British Bake Off 2014: Diana Beard quits due to illness
Homer Simpson takes the ALS ice bucket challenge because of course he does
Friends reunion: Jennifer Anniston, Lisa Kudrow and Courteney Cox perform mini sketch on Jimmy Kimmel Live
Kate Bush, Hammersmith Apollo, gig review: Just what everyone was hoping for
Exclusive: We share blame for creating 'jihad generation', says Muslim strategist
Robin Williams Emmys tribute led by Billy Crystal criticised for including 'racist' joke about Muslim woman
The Rotherham child abuse scandal is a tale of apologists, misogyny and double standards
Scottish independence TV debate: Pumped-up Alex Salmond bounces back in bruising second round against Alistair Darling
Do you realise just how foolish the UK looks?
Ukip Douglas Carswell defection: Tory MP jumps ship to join Nigel Farage
- < Previous
- Next >