Trying to escape from a legacy of division

THE long, painful process of bringing closure to the trauma around the great wrongs committed on this island continues at its drip-drip, almost glacial pace. 

Trying to escape from a legacy of division

The process is so very slow, so very open-ended, that it casts a shadow over the efforts to build a normalised society. It perpetuates division and will do so until finally, as it must be, a line is drawn under those terrible events.

The work of the Commission for the Location of Victims’ Remains is a reminder of what a great achievement the North’s peace deal is.

Despite that, the discovery of two bodies, and the hope that a third may be found, in Meath, is a stark reminder of the terrors of the past and the fate of the victims is likely to harden attitudes.

It is very difficult too, to think that yesterday’s ruling in the High Court in Belfast, that backed British prime minister David Cameron’s refusal to hold a public inquiry into the 1989 murder of lawyer Pat Finucane, will not harden attitudes.

As more and more evidence of collusion emerges, Mr Finucane’s death remains a lightning rod for anger, especially as reliable sources suggest this clandestine relationship is responsible for hundreds of deaths.

In that context, maybe we should think again about projects like the search for the remains of Thomas Kent, who was executed at Cork prison nearly a century ago. Anything that encourages and perpetuates division hardly honours a a man who died trying to establish a real republic.

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