Heaney’s prophetic words

Seán Bronson rightly notes that the arrest of Gerry Adams in relation to the killing of Jean McConville "should highlight the lopsided version of the Troubles as depicted in the mainstream media" (Letters, May 6).

Heaney’s prophetic words

The interrogation of Adams was based on the controversial Boston College oral history Belfast Project tapes of paramilitaries in Northern Ireland

Although British Prime Minister David Cameron apologised in the House of Commons for the finding of the 2010 Saville report that the Bloody Sunday Massacre of 14 unarmed Irish people in Derry on January 30, 1972 was the immediate responsibility of British paratroopers “whose unjustifiable firing was the cause of those deaths and injuries”, there has been no prosecution of any person. Nor is there any investigation of the British paratroopers who killed 11 people in Ballymurphy, Belfast in 1971. These murdered people are just as innocent as Jean McConville.

The arrest and interrogation of Adams without pursuit of those who have killed hundreds of Irish Catholics in Northern Ireland may rip the scab off the fragile 1998 peace deal, and the lines of Seamus Heaney become sadly prophetic: “Coherent miseries, a bite and sup / We hug our little destiny again.”

Robert F. Lyons


Maine, USA

More in this section