November, 2013

Máirtin Ó Muilleoir at the cenotaph

It’s a safe bet that the appearance of Máirtin Ó Muilleoir , Belfast’s Lord Mayor,   at the wreath-laying ceremonies this year will have taken the breath of many republicans away. It’ll also have given ammunition to those who say that Sinn Féin have sold out. Keep in mind: Remembrance ceremonies honour all  British armed forces […]

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Some things and how to respond to them

One of the many worrying things that still haunt us in this little corner of the island is not so much events as the reaction to them. A couple of examples come to mind. During the height of the flag protest, there was a general acknowledgement by the police and others that there were elements […]

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Sunday Sequence and That Interview

I was on BBC Radio Ulster/Raidio Uladh’s Sunday Sequence this morning, along with Alex Kane and Dawn Purvis. Our discussion was preceded by a 20 -minute interview with Gerry Adams, where William Crawley asked him about a number of things, including the killing of Jean McConville,  the conviction of his brother Liam for sex crimes against […]

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Nothing to see here

Maybe like me, you’ve been feeling a bit …uneasy about that Afghanistan case. You know, the one  involving the British Royal Marines.  Where there’s several Marines in a field with this Taliban fighter who’s seriously wounded. And they think about letting him live, only it seems such a bother. And then one of the Marines […]

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Infuriating question: "How do you know that?"

I said yesterday that I’d thought about blogging on the swell of interest in the welfare of Sinn Féin (that is, that it should have a better leader) and one very cynical comment said that was a good idea, to not blog on that subject, that way it’d all blow over. (That’s irony, incidentally.) Well, […]

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Russell Brand is rude – but is he stupid?

I’m tempted to blog on the many people who are suddenly concerned for the welfare of Sinn Féin and that it should have a good leader, but I think instead I’ll write about Russell Brand. I remember not too long ago, my students had the laugh of their lives when I overheard them talking about […]

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Looking death in the eye

Maybe it’s the time of year. November in the Catholic Church calendar is the month of the dead,  Halloween abounds with talk of spirits and ghouls and the supernatural, and of course next Sunday is Remembrance Sunday.  Or maybe it’s William Crawley, who as well as being thoughful is thought-provoking. He tweeted this morning  “If […]

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Honouring the dead? Sorry, it can’t be done

The dead are dead. Except perhaps through our prayers, they are beyond our influence, whether good or bad.  Which is why it’s baffling to hear people talk about ‘honouring the dead’. The dead are dead and so free of anything we can do to or for them, be that positive or negative. So when next […]

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Jim Shannon makes a modest proposal

I was on the Nolan radio show earlier in the week discussing a bizarre idea. You’ll know it’s bizarre when I tell you that it came from Jim Shannon, DUP MP for Strangford. Not that Jim has shown originality with this idea – the primary sponsor of Early Day Motion 624  is a Tory MP […]

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We only think there’s nobody like us

We like to think our problems are unique but they’re not. Just the way we manage to screw up  efforts to resolve them. The New York Times  had an article a couple of days ago about two Mexicans academics who are trying to establish a museum to recall what Ulysses S Grant called “the most […]

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