DUP man John Finlay: ‘I warmly welcome the banner in Ballymoney in support of Soldier F’

Banners supporting Soldier F have gone up in towns around Northern Ireland, such as this one in Carrickfergus
Banners supporting Soldier F have gone up in towns around Northern Ireland, such as this one in Carrickfergus
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During three decades of ruthless terrorism, directed and driven largely by the Provisional IRA, our gallant security forces stood between us and those determined to destroy us.

As well as the RUC and the UDR, the British Army paid a high price, with many hundreds of soldiers murdered and others maimed for life.

That is the reality of what happened, and the pathetic efforts by Sinn Fein to re-write history simply will not wash.

Our soldiers are heroes whilst those who murdered them are terrorists. I support soldier F.

I therefore warmly welcome the banner erected in Ballymoney in support of soldier F.

Not only is he innocent until proven guilty, but it is a disgrace that other soldiers are being hounded after all these years when so many IRA terrorists were released under the Belfast Agreement or given letters of immunity from prosecution.

It therefore ill-becomes Sinn Fein MLA Philip McGuigan to express concern about the soldier F banner in Ballymoney.

He says, without a hint of irony, that “it is clearly intimidatory and offensive, particularly to those who have lost loved ones as a result of state violence”.

Such utter hypocrisy!

What about those who have lost loved ones as a result of IRA violence?

Has Mr McGuigan ever expressed concern about the many posters and flags which appear regularly in places such as Rasharkin in support of republican terrorists?

Has he condemned the naming of a children’s play park after an IRA hunger striker?

I will take no lessons from Mr McGuigan or any other Sinn Fein representatives about respect for the victims of the Troubles.

Meanwhile, I call on the British government to end what many regard as a witch-hunt against members of our security forces.

There must be a level playing field.

If there is to be an amnesty for terrorists, there must surely be an amnesty for our soldiers and police officers.

John Finlay, DUP Alderman, Cloughmills