Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Demonising the Separatists - Getting Them Young

The hitherto largely RedTory and Orange Republic of North Lanarkshire has long provided a home for bigotry and Labour bullying, with parliamentary and council seats being regarded as nigh-on heritable property. However, the biscuit has now been taken. I am indebted to Am Buidheann Dubh / The Black Band (Facebook Link) for the following photos of a Primary 7 (11 year olds)  homework assignment from yesterday.

In case any readers are ready to dismiss this as a hoax (as I was tempted to do), here is the weaselly statement and unreserved apology from North Lanarkshire Council.

For non-eagle eyed readers, here is the text. 

Case Study 1: Separatists
One example of this is NORTHERN IRELAND where the IRISH REPUBLICAN ARMY (IRA) used violence in its struggle to FREE Northern Ireland from British rule and bring about unification with the Republic of Ireland. They are known as REPUBLICANS. Other groups who wanted to remain part of Britain, the LOYALISTS, set up their own terrorism networks, such as the UDA. These organisations carried out acts of violence which cause over 3000 deaths in 30 years.
Another example of separatist terrorism is in Israel. Palestinians who live in Israel believe that it is THEIR land that is being occupied by the Israelis. Wars between Israel and Palestinians over this always ended in their defeat and so they have turned to terrorist methods for over 30 years. In 1972 eight Palestinian terrorists held nine Israeli athletes hostage at the Olympic Games in Munich. All of the hostages were killed. Most recently, terrorists have carried out SUICIDE BOMBINGS on buses and public places. They are respected by their own community as MARTYRS. A solution to this extremism is hard to find.
Case Study: Separatists
1. Which of the following are the TWO main terrorist groups in Northern Ireland?
Al Quaeda      UDA
IRA               Hamas
2.  Match the name LOYALIST or REPUBLICAN to the correct description of the group's aim.
This group want N. Ireland to remain part of the UK _____________________________
This group want N. Ireland to be united with the rest of Ireland ____________________
3.  Palestinians feel that they have the RIGHT to use terrorism against the Israelis.  Give TWO reasons why they feel this.
4.  Describe TWO examples of Palestinian terrorist activities.

Where to start? well, let's kick off with the heading. It’s about demonising the word “Separatists” and linking it to terrorism in the minds of the young, Separatist being the Unionist slang for a Yes Voter or SNP Supporter. I'm 50 so I’ve grown up with the IRA threat, I've also served in NI. Never have I heard them described as “Separatists”. Indeed, since their avowed aim is to rejoin the 32 counties from which they were separated by UK Govt diktat, it would be an utter misnomer.

An academic friend who is currently writing a PhD thesis on the history of the Troubles also pointed out that the UDA flirted with the idea of an independent Northern Ireland, so that would presumably utterly screw up the North Lanarkshire idea of who the "Separatists" were in that conflict.

Likewise the Palestinians, it takes some stretch of the imagination to describe the PLO or Hamas as “Separatists” and I note the wording in the preamble “Palestinians, who BELIEVE that it is THEIR land that is being occupied …” The whole World calls the West Bank and Gaza the Occupied Territories! The Palestinians don’t want to separate from a union with the Zionists, they want the Zionists to go back whence they came! I’ve never heard the PLO or Hamas described as “Separatists” before. 

The IRA and the PLO - probably the 2 terrorist organisations in the world who least deserve the appellation "Separatist".  This blatant propaganda has nothing to do with understanding international terrorism whatsoever and everything to do with demonising a legitimate slice of domestic Scottish public opinion.

From the logic of the preamble, all Republicans are members of the IRA, all Loyalists are members of the UDA (or similar) and all Palestinians are terrorists? As an Ex-Serviceman, I find the piece particularly galling because the state of Israel came into being after a prolonged terrorist campaign directed at the British!

Someone in North Lanarkshire deserves to be fired for this.

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