In a second night of violence in east Belfast a photographic journalist was injured as both the UVF and ‘republican’ criminals flex their summer mussels. This is the start of the traditional seasonal ritual of criminal gangs who are engaged in drug dealing, prostitution, racketeering and counterfeiting using the ‘sectarian’ flag to ply their wares.
Nobody should dismiss this as mindless violence, oh no, at the end of the summer when the rainy season sets in and these criminal gangs run for cover, there will be a pot of gold at the end of their rainbow. At the end of the summer the British Government/Stormont will reverse their decision to cut the funding to those ‘peace’ groups that sit at the sectarian interface and and bring ‘calm’ to these areas of conflict.
The important point to remember is that most of these ‘peace’ groups are manned by well salaried and expense claiming ex-prisoners from both loyalist and ‘republican’ criminal entities. Yes indeed, this is not mindless violence, this is about creating a situation that will need resolution at a time when the ‘peace’ money is running dry, however, as the violence needs to be quelled extra money will be found and ‘peace’ will be restored for another two seasons.
If any journalist was to look at the history of the UVF and The IRA in this area they would find a long history of cooperation, yes, there have been murders on both sides, however, these murders were nothing more than flags of convenience. David Ervine (RIP) of the UVF told me in 1998 that the UVF and the IRA and meet on many occasions through the bloodiest years of the ‘conflict’ to divide up the spoils of the protection rackets in east Belfast and this cooperation was at its height during the redevelopment of the Waterfront area. Now all that big racketeering money has dried up and the only handy money to be had is ‘peace’ money which comes from the British Government/Stormont to fund the front groups for these terrorist organisations.
However, all is not lost, in the not too distant future, the leaders of this politico-sectarian-criminal violence will be cozied up in their nice offices and their salaries will remain intact.
A photographer covering rioting in Belfast has been injured after a shooting incident.
Police confirmed three shots were fired last night during the disturbances around the Short Strand area of east Belfast during a second night of violence.
The Press Association photographer suffered an injury to the leg and was taken to hospital for treatment.
A spokeswoman for the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast said: “He is stable in Accident and Emergency.”
The incident came as police faced fresh attacks after trouble ignited in the North.
Bricks and bottles were thrown between nationalists and unionists in east Belfast as a heavy security presence tried to quell serious unrest.
Several hundred people gathered near interfaces close to the Newtownards Road.
On Monday night two people were shot in the legs during the most serious rioting for years following an Ulster Volunteer Force raid on Catholic Short Strand.
A police spokeswoman advised motorists to avoid the area and said crowds had gathered.
Officers are talking to community representatives to try to calm tensions.
Ulster Unionist Assembly member Michael Copeland said missiles had been hurled between the opposing sides.
Masked youths were pelting each other with stones and fireworks and missiles were being fired at police lines.
Police brought water cannon in.
Last night police said around 700 people had gathered in the area and were using petrol bombs, fireworks and other missiles. Officers discharged several baton rounds.
A spokeswoman said there were reports that two people had sustained burn injuries.
Roads in the area were closed.
The spokeswoman said police were dealing with “serious disorder” in the Lower
Newtownards Road area of East Belfast.