The Provos Surrender
Well, the Provos have made it official now. They've been bought off. Gerry Adams and the crew have been loaded up with government salaries and jobs and perks and little under-the-table sweeteners to the point where it's bugger the poor bastard down on Falls Road with no job or the single mother in Tallaght who can't pay her ESB bill, they've got theirs, Jack.
A few interesting points, though.
First off, the I.R.A. was never actually defeated and broken up by the British or Northern Ireland state, much less the powerless little 26-County Republic. Eventually the only way the Brits could make the nuisance go away was to open their checkbooks, however grumbling and reluctantly. This was euphemistically known as "bringing them into the democratic process."
Secondly, the Provos still haven't "decommissioned" so much as a matchlock musket, and it looks like the usual smoke and mirrors applies there. They're not giving up their guns.
Third, the Provo infrastructure is still very much in place, however decayed and degenerate it might be from its heyday in the 1970s. I'm sure all the dumb-asses pub Republicans are still singing Sean South of Garryowen and Four Green Fields in the snugs on Friday nights, and things like Droppin' Well and Dominic McGlinchey's massacre in that church and the murder of Robert McCartney are already on their way to being forgotten.
Finally, judging from the Republican web sites I monitor, not everyone is happy by a long shot with the surrender. I've even seen a few unkind comments about Gerry Adams dying his beard to hide the gray hairs.
So yeah, the Provos have thrown in the towel, but you have to give the little guy credit: he went all fifteen rounds with the biggest baddest bruiser on his block, and when it was over he was still standing even if he lost on points.