General Question

axlefoley's avatar

Why did so many Americans, openly financially support the IRA, when they are now so against other forms of TERRORISM.

Asked by axlefoley (347points) March 26th, 2008 from iPhone


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12 Answers

flipper's avatar

Can you give an example?

axlefoley's avatar

In the 1970’s to 80’s the IRA, were vary active bombing main land Britain. For their political beliefs!

sndfreQ's avatar

…And who are you calling “so may Americans?” what evidence supports that position, or is it just your perception? Clue us in.

flipper's avatar

I really do not know who you mean as far as supporting the IRA ?

axlefoley's avatar

Please Google it. If you don’t know what went on over here then you will be shocked.

flipper's avatar

Are you speaking of then or now?

axlefoley's avatar

Things are quiet now, for the time being!

soundedfury's avatar

Ignoring my concern over your lack of grammatical accurate syntax, I think you’re asking why Americans don’t see hypocrisy in financially supporting the Provisional IRA in the ‘70s and ‘80s, yet are against other forms of terrorism.

I would ask, as sndfreQ said, for the evidence that supports the claim that “so many” openly supported the Provisional IRA. If you are talking about political and financial support for Sinn Fein, you are conflating the two, which is very dangerous when trying to untangle the mess in Northern Ireland.

Sinn Fein, while once being the political arm of the original IRA, had few legitimate ties to the Provisional IRA that was reborn in the 70s. In fact, the Provisional IRA had no real ties to the original IRA save for the name. The link that people make between the two is that Sinn Fein refused to reject violence as a tool towards independence. Whether they meant violence towards the state or the sort of indiscriminate violence that the Provisional IRA represented is up for debate.

Yes, Sinn Fein could sometimes influence the actions of the Provisional IRA, but the Provisional IRA remained completely autonomous. To a much different extent, it’s the similar to how, in the U.S., the Democratic Party can sometimes reign in ecoterrorists like the Animal Liberation Front or the Republican Party can sometimes reign in extreme white power groups. It doesn’t mean they are one and the same, just that they have limited ability to negotiate with them based on their political affiliation.

You also have to remember that a significant portion of the population of the United States wasn’t old enough to have an opinion about the Provisional IRA during the beginning of the Troubles. If you argue that the United States supported the Provisional IRA, you have to confront the fact that United States (as a state) is historically connected, but that the population of that state is much further removed from that historical context.

Personally, as an American of strong republican Irish descent, I continue to be conflicted by the Troubles. I do not support the Provisional IRA and I wish that Sinn Fein had more strongly denounced their tactics, but like Sinn Fein I feel that a people have the right to turn to violence when removing an occupying or colonizing force. However, I believe that the right only applies to violent acts directed towards the state, and that the right is forfeit if used against innocent civilians.

axlefoley's avatar

Your not in Governent are you! Vary good reply, I knew I might get some strong feelings on this. I was just interrested to hear what other people thought. When I was growing up in London. The IRA was a big thing. Don’t get me wrong I love America, and I should of chose my words more carefully.

brownlemur's avatar

Your You’re not in G government, are you ! ? Vary Very good reply. I knew I might get some strong feelings on this. I was just interested to hear what over other people thought. When I was growing up in London, the IRA was a big thing. Don’t get me wrong, I love America. I should of have chose chosen my words more carefully.

axlefoley's avatar

Shit, your not a Teacher as well are you! I learn something everyday, thanks.

cwilbur's avatar

Because terrorists are only the people who commit violent acts in the name of causes we disapprove of.

If we approve of the cause, they aren’t terrorists, they’re freedom fighters.

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