Eamonn McCann said in an interview with Eamonn Mallie on Irish TV:
"The reforms which emerged allegedly from the armed struggle were in place in the early 1970s."
See more of McCann speaking with Mallie here and here. Gerry Adams wrote on his blog:
"From the 1950s border campaign, to the civil rights in the 1960s, to providing safe houses for IRA volunteers and supporting the hunger strikers, many good and decent Fianna Fáil people supported the demand for freedom..."Fintan O'Toole wrote:
"Instead of trying to alleviate the suffering of ordinary Catholics, the IRA was intent on destroying rational reform and provoking repression."Fintan O'Toole has written:
"In practice, the IRA has functioned at times purely as a Catholic sectarian murder squad, slaughtering Protestants simply because of their religion."Conor Cruise O'Brien in a speech, ‘Ireland, Britain and America’, delivered at New York University, November 30 1978:
"The Provisional IRA from the beginning of the seventies moved in to exploit that situation [the systematic ignoring by Westminster of the workings of Northern Ireland devolution up to the time when the Civil Rights movement among Catholics, and protestant reactions to that movement]. Their object has not been, and is not, just or mainly the liberation of Catholics, but the unification of Ireland first by elimination of the British seen as "responsible for partition", and then by coercion of the protestants. The people who have suffered most, and are placed in most danger, by the IRA campaign and by its objectives, are the Catholics of Northern Ireland."David Trimble said in an interview with Alex Kane:
"Sinn Fein abandoned the terrorist campaign because it wasn’t working. They try and exculpate themselves by saying it was a campaign for equality, which it wasn’t, so they’re trying to do this rewriting of history."He also said:
"That wasn’t Sinn Fein’s position in 1998 (the Agreement working well with them at the heart of it), but it was their position a few years later."And said:
"Sinn Fein were heavily opposed to a Northern Ireland Assembly. In December 1997 it was proving almost impossible to get them to even agree to put an Assembly on the agenda. The SDLP wanted it on the agenda but they weren’t prepared to face down Sinn Fein at that stage.”And also:
"On the day on which the agreement was voted through, Sinn Fein abstained. And the reason they abstained was their hostility to Stormont. They didn’t want Stormont: but it was what they got and what the people voted for and they proceeded to make the best of that situation."Ed Moloney explained that the IRA of the late 1960s wanted to provoke the security forces into reaction and into exercising repressive measures over the Catholic-nationalist community. The IRA had laid a trap and the Unionists and British had walked right into it by introducing internment, he wrote:
"The Belfast leadership knew that internment would come – but it calculated that the sooner this happened, the better. A plan was laid to force the British into a premature and ill-prepared strike, carried out before the IRA became exposed; but its success was entirely dependent upon the IRA’s opponents reacting in a predictably intemperate fashion…
And so, spurred on by a strategically gifted, 23-year-old commander of the Second Belfast Battalion called Gerry Adams, the IRA began a destructive economic bombing campaign in Belfast that soon had Unionists screaming for internment.
The high point of the campaign, if such it can be called, was a provocative series of bombs along the route of the Twelfth Orange parade that exploded the night before. Belfast Orangemen marching to the field at Finaghy that July 12th morning, had to walk past devastated store fronts, the twisted remnants of car bombs, and wrecked buildings, all testament to this new threat to their supremacy. And so, internment without trial was introduced within weeks. Old RUC Special Branch records were scoured for lists of suspects and, as Adams and his allies predicted, the new Provisional IRA escaped largely unscathed when the troops raided homes in Belfast and elsewhere."Moloney also wrote here about forcing “the British to take counterproductive security measures such as internment”:
"By the end of 1985 Hegarty had been seconded to work on attachment to the QMG’s department to help shift weapons which were beginning to arrive from Libya. A year or so earlier Libyan Intelligence and the IRA had struck an audacious and ambitious deal. The Libyans would supply hundreds of tons of weaponry and millions of pounds if the IRA pledged to make life for Mrs Thatcher’s government uncomfortable, something the IRA had no difficulty agreeing. It was Libya’s revenge for the expulsion of their diplomats after the shooting of WPC Yvonne Fletcher while the IRA then laid plans for a major military offensive, based on the Vietnamese ‘Tet’ offensive, designed to sicken British public opinion with Northern Ireland and perhaps force the British to take counterproductive security measures such as internment.Read my previous post on Sinn Fein revisionism here. My previous post on general 1916 revisionism here.