Sorry for blog slow-down over the last few days – just been getting Edinburgh Festival stuff together, all very busy and frenetic. Also had lovely gig on thursday night in Guildford, at the Electric Theatre – great venue, lovely listening audience, and a soundman that I knew when I was at school! Thanks to everyone who came to the gig, it was much fun, indeed. Please feel free to post reviews over in The Forum.
Big news of the last couple of days has been the IRA declaration of weapons decomissioning and and end to ‘all activities’. Response has been mixed from hyperbolic to cynical in the extreme (doesn’t take a degree in political science to work out who said what).
It seems to me to be a great step forward, but given their track record, it remains to be seen how long it lasts, how honestly it will be carried out, and what the IRA members will do now. When you’ve spent your whole life supporting a paramilitary terrorist group, both in ‘the stuggle’ and in extra-judicial beatings, knee-cappings, extortion, robbery and all the other things that are attributed to the various para-military groups on both sides in Ireland, it’s likely to take more than a declaration from your political leaders to change your entire way of life.
As usual, I hope I’m wrong, I hope this is an end to the gangland thuggery of certain areas of Belfast. But methinks this is just another step on an unfinished journey.by