Terror threats are fighting talk as loyalists ramp up tensions over ‘traitor’ Boris and Brexit betrayal
LOYALIST terror chiefs have declared a ‘Phoney War’ on Britain and Ireland.
Mounting resentment at the terms of Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal has heightened speculation over the potential for loyalist paramilitary violence both South of the Border and in Britain. The Sunday World understands the paramilitary leadership of the UVF and UDA is content for conjecture over their intentions to gather pace. The organisations are happy for senior figures to brief commentators and influential public figures about the sense of betrayal in the loyalist North of Ireland. An implieded threat of violence is being seen as the only effective weapon they have if their distant hope of wreacking the deal is to be achieved. “There’s nothing like talk of loyalist attacks in Ireland and more so in Britain to focus the mind,” a senior loyalist who wears an Orange sash has told the Sunday World. “The UVF and UDA supported by the DUP and it’s cohorts no name’s mentioned (Jamie Bryson) has little else in their armour other than the threat, at the very least, of violence.” Paramilitary leaders such as UVF chief Stephen Matthews and UDA boss Dee Stitt have been prominent in attending public meetings in loyalist areas aimed at demonstrating opposition to ‘traitor Boris.’
In recent weeks reports attributed to senior loyalist sources have talked about “loyalist bombs in Limerick”. In an interview prominent loyalist Robert Girvan said: “I can’t see loyalism of any strand just walking into a situation where there is any type of economic union with the Irish Republic.
“I was talking to someone who said we’ll see how hard the Border is if bombs start going off in Limerick.” He said groups such as the UVF had been formed to protect the North of Ireland and it’s place within the Union. “If that place is threatened, the organisations will step up to the mark,” According to loyalist insiders there is a planned campaign to plant the seeds of fear and hate. The implied threat was highlighted by remarks from trade union chief Len McCluskey. The General Secretary of UNITE firmly predicted a violent backlash.
“Boris is little bit like a second hand sales-man, He didn’t want us to look under the bonnet” he said in an interview with NewStatesman magazine. “He didn’t want us to look under the bonnet of his deal to see the what the engine was like. And how true that was.” “The current deal puts a border down the Irish Sea that’s unbelievably dangerous.” “Have we got to wait for people to be blown up and killed? Whether these ports are in Stranrear or Pembroke in Hothead, or other areas in the North of Ireland where there’s going to be checks.
“Do the media not understand that loyalist paramilitary groups are meeting almost on a daily basis in the North of Ireland? [It is] incredibly reckless and dangerous.” The Sunday World approached Mr McCluskey (pictured above) for a comment but he was unavailable for comment. Sources have told the Sunday World it is little more than ‘fighting talk’ and that in reality there is little stomach for violence nor do groups have the capability to mount even a limited campaign, but cautioned violence remains a possibility because of a deep sense of frustration on both sides of the community.
There are also worries that close ties with far right groups on the loyalist side (The National Front) for one both here in the North of Ireland and Britain could be exploited to cause civic disruption with a campaign of street protests and violence. This week senior Orangeman the Rev. Mervyn Gibson (pictured in the main picture), described proposed Brexit arrangements as a ‘United Ireland by Stealth,” warned of ‘civil disobedience’ should the Boris deal go through.
LOYALIST fears are grounded in the reality that the North of Ireland is off the agenda as far as the the North of Ireland is concerned. The issue of regulatory checks on the Irish Sea does not figure in the election campaign in Britain nor do arrangements along the frontier with the Republic of Ireland. Despite urging members of the UVF to vote the DUP at the polls, there is an acceptance within the leadership of the party that it has been sold down the river. Rather than cement the Union, their hardline campaign has placed it in jeopardy.
The shadow of violent reaction hanging over the general election has addeded an edge to the campaign, here but not in Britain. “Loyalist fears are not being addressed,” said our source, “Once again there is a feeling of being left behind, backed into a corner they need to be be doing something to protect the North of Ireland position in the Union.”.
VETERANS SHUN ‘DIVIDED AND BROKEN’ UDA
PARAMILITARY veterans have slammed the UDA as ‘broken’ over it’s failure to rid the organisation of drugs.
Frustration and anger in the ranks of long time members to grow at the crime gang’s increasing involvement in the drugs trade -despite repeated promises by the leadership to step away from criminality. Beleaguered terror boss Jackie McDonald (pictured above) is facing the brunt of the criticism as the drug culture in his South Belfast heartland is booming. In the past he has stated you can’t be a loyalist and a drug dealer and this week he suggested the UDA’s name was being blackmailed by ‘small numbers of criminals and drug dealers masquerading as loyalists. He made his comments in the latest edition of the Belfast Political Research Group magazine in an article calling for UDA members to vote for the DUP in the forthcoming election. His remarks drew a sharp response from elements within his own membership. They claim the 72-year-old has turned a blind eye to his organisation’s involvement in drugs.
Two weeks ago the UDA leadership on Sandy Row in the south of the city were linked to the seizure of cash and drugs at a house in the heart of the loyalist stronghold. Two kilos of cannabis and £15,000 in cash were removed from a house at Oswald Park and it is thought the property is one link in a chain of drug dens dotted across Sandy Row including a series of ‘grow houses.’ There is no suggestion McDonald-who has repeatedly publicly declared his opposition to drugs-is befitting from sanctioned the operation-but is accused of failing to act. His three man Sandy Row command team, dubbed the Coward Commanders is understood to be deeply involved in the racket which is being operated by two brothers.
The Coward Commanders take a sizeable chunk of the profit in return for the brothers being allowed to ply their trade. The Sunday World has spoken to a number of veteran members who claim the area has been turned into a ‘living hell’ as the heroin drugs trade explodes. There are now increasing concerns about the prevalence of heroin-once a taboo drug on the streets of Belfast but which has seen a surge in use in recent years. Seven heroin related deaths across the city in the space of a few days has heightened fears of a deadly epidemic.
Criminal sources confirmed RUC/PSNI warnings last week that a lethally strong batch of the deadly drug is responsible for the spate of deaths. The Sunday World also understands the increasing influence of foreign organised crime gangs, mainly Russian and Lithuanian are offering higher grade Class A drugs is a factor. Paramilitaries had total control of the drugs trade in the wake of the conflict mainly controlled by the UDA and UVF and notoriously diluted the strength of drugs like cocaine and heroin to maximise their profits. Users were forced to take higher and higher doses to get the same effect.
Foreign gangs, many from Eastern Europe, moved into the North of Ireland market bringing them purer or higher grade narcotics. Not used to greater strength userers continued to take similar amounts, sometimes with tragic consequences. A sharp increase in the number of drug deaths is of little consequences to the UDA and other organised crime gangs. Their priority is profit. The Sunday World can reveal dealers on Sanday Row, including the cannabis brothers, are allowed to operate in return, not only for a slice of the profits, but also on the understanding that if they are arrested they admit no UDA connection.
They have been told in circumstances where they are detained they cannot rely on the protection organisation, despite lining their pockets and if they are caught they will feel “the full force of the UDA”. “That is the agreement with the dealers they can work away but are not covered in case of a comeback,” said our source. “If they are caught they are on their own…the commanders will just act stupid as if they hadn’t a clue.” Such is the resentment among veterans and residents that the UDA leadership on Sandy Row have abandoned monthly meetings of the members. “People are fed up living in Sandy Row it’s just not the same anymore it lost its spark a long time ago and that is down to drugs,” said our source. He said the UDA is ‘divided and broken’. “Veteran members are furious about the way the place has become and don’t respect the Coward Commanders one bit. “There hasn’t been a meeting in months, they can’t even arrange one as nobody wants to listen to their bullshit and they have no support or backing. “The place is a living hell.”
With many thanks to the: Sunday World and Richard Sullivan for the EXCLUSIVE original story – Richard.sullivan.sundayworld.com
Follow these links to find out more about the links between the DUP and UDA: https://inews.co.uk/news/politics/dup-politician-says-thought-terrorist-meeting-flute-band-event-519237?amp