SF talk about equality but glorify IRA barbarity

Dead horses covered up and wrecked cars at the scene of carnage in Rotten Row, Hyde Park, after an IRA bomb exploded as the Household Cavalry was passing in 1982
Dead horses covered up and wrecked cars at the scene of carnage in Rotten Row, Hyde Park, after an IRA bomb exploded as the Household Cavalry was passing in 1982

The slaughter in the photograph happened 35 years ago, when the IRA murdered four Blues and Royals guardsmen in Hyde Park.

The bombers went on to murder seven members of the Royal Green Jackets in Regents Park on the same day.

Michelle O'Neill at the IRA commeration for IRA terrorists killed at Loughall in 1987.
 Pic Matt Bohill Pacemaker

Michelle O'Neill at the IRA commeration for IRA terrorists killed at Loughall in 1987. Pic Matt Bohill Pacemaker

Fifteen years later the terrorist wing of Sinn Fein ceased its brutal campaign of indiscriminate murder, ethnic cleansing and economic destruction.

Whilst this brought significant changes for both communities, it didn’t reverse the fact that many lives had been ended before their time or changed irrevocably.

The hurt inflicted on a generation couldn’t be turned off, even if the terrorism could.

Wider society has no need to be thankful or appreciative just because republicans stopped breaking the law, when the Provos were heading inexorably towards defeat anyway.

The aftermath of the IRA attack at Loughgall in 1987, in which the SAS killed the IRA gang. Picture Pacemaker

The aftermath of the IRA attack at Loughgall in 1987, in which the SAS killed the IRA gang. Picture Pacemaker

Republicans do, however, have every reason to be remorseful for the barbarity the IRA inflicted on the people of Northern Ireland for a quarter of a century.

Yet even now Michelle O’Neill and Sinn Fein continue to glorify the actions of gunmen and bombers.

This is a fact not lost on unionists.

Sinn Fein is quick to demand respect, but slow to give it.

The notorious IRA gang killed by the SAS at Loughgall in 1987, believed to be behind many murders and commemorated by Michelle O'Neill

The notorious IRA gang killed by the SAS at Loughgall in 1987, believed to be behind many murders and commemorated by Michelle O'Neill

Republicans talk about equality, but when it suits, deny the most basic of all human rights – the right to life itself.

If politics here are to move on, Sinn Fein must accept that the IRA campaign was morally wrong and the use of terrorism to achieve political goals can never be justified.

Trevor Clarke, Councillor, DUP, Coleraine