Why the Provisional IRA were anything but Republican

I am quite frankly sick and tired of former terrorists in Sinn Féin claiming that their actions during the troubles were in the name of “republicanism”. I’m also disgusted that this ridiculous claim is digested without question by the media, and conveyed to the public as accepted fact worthy of no further investigation.

Although removing an unelected monarch is undoubtedly a republican goal, the rest of what the Provisional IRA terrorists did is not at all republican in nature. As Jean-Jacques Rousseau so elegantly put it, a republican government is government of “the people”, for the people, by the people. The actions of the Provisional IRA, particularly their sectarian murders, served instead to fracture the people and did nothing to further their purported desire to create a republic.

Their actions however were certainly nationalist in nature. Nationalism is a noxious ideology that is only one small step away from racism. It promotes illogical degrees of pride in ones origins, is hostile to outsiders, spawned two world wars and countless other petty and bloody conflicts around the world, from the eternal war in Israel to our very own troubles at home. Wherever nationalism goes, violence follows it. This has been proven innumerable times throughout history.

There is nothing wrong with being proud of ones origins, but there is something fundamentally flawed with assuming that the place you are born gives you a higher status than someone who was born elsewhere. Nationalism creates these delusions of grandeur, and calling this  republicanism is not only incorrect, it’s insulting.

I am not a unionist sympathiser, and I am under no illusions that they have a case for answer for creating the troubles. I actually bear them even more hostility, as they clearly worked actively long before the troubles to fracture the communities. The Provisional IRA were, in a sense, a natural reaction to their discrimination. However that reaction furthered the existing divides, and the media giving unquestioning credence to Sinn Féin’s claims that they were working under a republican banner is something that cannot be tolerated.

  1. At least they stood and fought, unlike you and the rest of the Free Staters who deserted us, leaving us to face the kicks and beatings of the B-Specials.

    You Fianna FAILERS and your stinking hypocrisy – Jack Lynch promised to defend us, but did nothing. Neil Blaney and Kevin Boland tried to help us, but were expelled from the party.

    Spineless traitors! Not a true Irishman among you!

  2. Terrorists? What? How is it terrorism to defend your home against corrupt police who want to kill you? Wouldn’t you do the same?

  3. very well said Fiachra, Provos were nothing more than thugs and criminals, pity it took so long to defeat them

    • Toby_____
    • September 24th, 2011

    @Jack Driscoll, I think that your last comment in your first post is proof enough of the dangerously nationalistic and racist sentiments of the Prov. IRA…

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