Re: Yank IRA wisdom

From: Michael S. Lorrey (
Date: Fri Apr 28 2000 - 07:35:15 MDT

David Crookes wrote:

> At 19:56 26/04/00 -0400, Michael S. Lorrey wrote:
> >Which just indicates the the propaganda may be working, and the british
> >have been
> >able to avoid any fuckups for a sufficient amount of time. The SAS threw
> >in the
> >towel. They concluded there were at best 300 active IRA people committing
> >most if
> >not all violent acts, and they couldn't take them down. With one of the
> >tightest
> >gun control laws in the world, the SAS couldn't outgun the IRA. With one
> >of the
> >most absolute policies abdicating the human rights of the accused (and the
> >Laws
> >of War for that matter, depending on which way you want to take the argument),
> >they couldn't hunt down and erase even a fraction of the enemy.
> The rest of your post seemed valid but this paragraph surprised me. I doubt
> that the IRA are able to out gun the SAS in the context of fighting an
> equivalent battle. The IRA are regarded as terrorists and so will be fought
> within the rule of appropriate law.
> If Britain were to regard the IRA as a legitimate army, I'm sure a lot of
> them would die, very rapidly, most likely with a fair ammount of collateral
> damage (to use that odious phrase).

If the British regarded the IRA as a legitimate army, you'd have British officers
being brought up on war crimes charges, and they'd never beat the IRA. Conventional
techniques are incapable of winning against native insurgencies. Insurgents win by
merely continuing to exist until the oppressors get tired of the expense and go
away, opressors can only win if the insurgents are wiped out to the last man and
the remaining population is happy with their new leaders/owners.

> However, within British law, they're regarded as an in-between (terrorists)
> which means that various normal criminal/human rights are waivered.
> However, they cannot be killed/attacked in an offensive manner, well at a
> public level, that is. At a covert level, it sometimes appears to be a
> different story, but only the govnerment/spooks/victims know the true story
> there.

The SAS troops in Ireland had one mission and one mission only: to kill, with
extreme prejudice, any IRA partisans they got ahold of. The SAS is not a unit you
use for police work, and only in intelligence work if you don't mind using torture
and mutilation as a standard interviewing technique.

> In Britain, everyone I've ever met wants peace. But start discussing the
> detail and the viewpoints diverge dramatically.

Everybody wants peace. Some are willing to compromise to acheive it, others will
only accept peace on their terms, some have the idea that peace means the other guy
is put back in his place of subservience, and some will only accept peace if the
other guys are dead and buried.

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