The Nazi Director of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels wrote that ‘If you tell a lie big enough, and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it’.
The Sinn Fein propagandists clearly agree with the Goebbels strategy because their lies are real whoppers.
I hope in a series of articles to expose those lies, so let’s start with the Sinn Fein lie of the moment – equality. Sinn Fein claim that they will return to a Stormont executive when they have achieved equality for all – equality in government, equality for the Irish language, equality ad nauseum!
Their assertion that they are denied equality is arguably their biggest lie.
They have it already but their true agenda is dominance, not equality.
The Belfast Agreement, approved by referendum, guaranteed that equality in numerous spheres.
In government, unionists conceded any normal society’s democratic right for a majority government.
Instead, an inclusive executive was agreed based on party strengths.
Where then is the inequality?
That executive is led by co-equal first ministers who are totally inter-dependent. Where is the inequality?
The agreement mandated mutual respect for all traditions but special consideration for those who choose to speak Irish, and those who seek to promote our Ulster-Scots heritage.
Special cross-border bodies were established to guarantee those commitments to the language and heritage activists, and funding has been preserved even in extremely difficult fiscal circumstances. The agreement however wisely recognised that language and heritage provisions should be demand-led to ensure that they would not be used as cultural weapons to do down other languages and cultures.
Therein is the rub because equality is not what Sinn Fein desires, rather they will use their language demands to secure what they know can never be secured through the ballot box.
Proof of this can be found in this island’s recent history.
Around the same time that Goebbels was promoting his ‘big lie’ Sinn Fein was introducing language requirements in the Irish Free State as the final step in the ethnic cleansing of their British Protestant minority.
Thereafter, Protestants had great difficulty in obtaining public sector employment, many communities effectively shunned Protestant businesses, and large tranches of Protestant-owned farmland was seized and redistributed. It is time that these nefarious actions were recognised and repaired by today’s Irish government and wider society. A positive start would be for all right-minded democrats to stand up and expose what Sinn Fein’s true agenda is.
The DUP MLAs and MPs have had difficult choices to make – much more difficult now I would argue than the decisions faced by Ulster Unionist MLAs and MPs twenty years ago.
Sinn Fein’s price for restoring devolution may well be the setting in place of legislation and structures which directly contributes to the destruction of all aspects of Britishness in Northern Ireland, and once done there is no turning back.
Goebbels recognised the value of ‘the big lie’.
He also recognised that its undoing was the telling of the truth.
We must expose the Sinn Fein agenda to the truth.
l David Campbell is a former Ulster Unionist Party chair and MLA. He worked with David Trimble at the time of the 1998 Belfast Agreement