The recent announcement that DPP Barra McGrory has requested an investigation into the RUC & MI5 should come as no surprise to anyone.
This decision by Mr McGrory is a political one- and given the lack of resistance from the DUP, it appears to me that this is the second down payment on the Stormont House Agreement.
There is no doubt in my mind that Barra McGrory was appointed as DPP with a nod and a wink from the DUP- a surrendering of one of the key mechanisms of justice to placate the IRA.
We seen evidence of just how far the Government have went to appease the IRA when we heard that Tony Blair took decisions based not upon the law- but what the political ramifications of such decisions would be. His revelations that arresting Rita O’Hare would have been unhelpful to the peace process shines a light on the dark murky world of this so called ‘process’.
Hold the velvet glove approach to Rita O’Hare and other pro agreement republicans in comparison to the state sanctioned and state sponsored murder of Billy Wright, who was murdered for no other reason than he opposed the agreement.
There have also been grave injustices perpetrated by MI5 and the security forces against loyalists who refused to toe the line- the Government security services didn’t exclusively collude in the murder of republicans or loyalists- they colluded in the murder, discrediting and vilification of anyone- loyalist or republican- who refused to toe the line the Government wanted.
MI5 continue to harass, demonise and vilify anyone who speaks out against the political status quo. They treat pro agreement republicans with kid gloves, while taking an entirely different approach to republicans who oppose Sinn Fein. I draw a distinction here between armed dissident republicans and those republicans whose only crime is holding an anti agreement viewpoint. They should be allowed to articulate and express that viewpoint in a peaceful and lawful manner without the state seeking to quash their right to free speech.
The same is true within the loyalist community- pro agreement loyalists are left alone whilst anyone who holds a political viewpoint that could upset the ‘process’ is hounded, criminalised and marginalised. This is MI5 in action and it doesn’t matter whether you are loyalist or republican.
The attempts to demonise the RUC stand in stark contrast with the state sponsored attempts to rewrite history which portrays the IRA as the ‘good guys’.
There were many good men in the RUC who have been betrayed by the Belfast agreement and sold out by the Government- there were also some who would have pulled the trigger and shot a loyalist just as quickly as they shot a republican.
MI5 are not there to uphold the freedoms and to protect the citizens of the UK- they are there to protect the interests of the Government of the day. They seek not to serve but to control.
Everyone is entitled to justice and equality under the law- my problem is that it seems some are more equal than others and that justice is more often than not weighted, measured and tailored for political convenience.
If Investigations into the RUC are found to be required then surely the same can be said about investigations into the IRA?
If Barra McGrory is going to launch a crusade into dealing with the past then he needs to discharge this duty impartially- and that means pursuing his former clients in the IRA just a rigorously as he is pursuing the British security forces.