Letter: IRA's `prisoners'
Tuesday 08 June 1999
We should not accept Adams' use of language. The IRA has no authority to wage war. What we have had this past 30 years is not war, but unlawful and unjustifiable violence committed by an illegal organisation in pursuit of a political objective for which democratic methods were available.
Using Adams' reasoning, any person taken prisoner by the IRA is a prisoner of war and entitled to the same treatment as it demands for its own members. In practice the IRA murders its prisoners, usually dumping the bodies at the roadside. In the case of the "Disappeared", about 20 people were abducted, made prisoner, murdered, and their bodies concealed in secret graves.
To say that "these things happen in war" is to imply that they are not unusual, but are unfortunate, accidental consequences of military operations. In the cases of which Mr Adams was speaking the deaths were not accidental but planned, deliberate, premeditated-meditated acts of murder.
Children's bookseller wins The Independent's new author search
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Nokia no more: Microsoft drops once-ubiquitous mobile name – in favour of its Lumia brand
- 2 Renee Zellweger on plastic surgery: 'I'm living a more fulfilling life and I'm thrilled that perhaps it shows'
- 3 Jimmy Carr's controversial Oscar Pistorius joke goes too far at the Q Awards
- 4 Australian café owner sparks debate after saying 'No' to having unruly children on premises
- 5 NHS staff banned from drinking tea or coffee on the job because it looks like they're not working hard enough
MOBO Awards 2014: Jess Glynne hits back at 'ridiculous' criticism of nominated white artists
American Horror Story season 4, Fox - review: Silly, sensational and sensitive
MOBO Awards 2014: Sam Smith sweeps the board with four gongs
The Apprentice, episode 3 - review: Lord Sugar hacks away at the deadwood with double elimination
Channel 5 likely to push Big Brother to the margins of its schedule
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991' with most Brits wanting to stay 'in'
Thousands with degenerative conditions classified as 'fit to work in future' – despite no possibility of improvement
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters