Fifteen years ago, the UK was engaged in its own "war on terror", in Northern Ireland. Republican and Loyalist militias were engaged in murder and terrorism in pursuit of their respective political goals of a united and divided Ireland, with the British supposedly caught in the middle trying to keep the peace. Except it turns out that they weren't "caught in the middle", or trying to keep the peace - rather, they were colluding with the violent terrorists of the Ulster Volunteer Force to cover up at least a dozen sectarian murders, as well as assaults, "punishment shootings", extortion, drug dealing, and terrorism. In other words, they were running a death squad. And now they've been found out, the best they can come up with is to say that
[have] always acted in the best interests of the pursuit of justice and [have] nothing to be ashamed of.
Which sounds an awful lot like General Pinochet, doesn't it?
What's frightening is that far too many of the people involved in this are still working in the RUC, and one is even heading the UK's Inspectorate of Constabulary, tasked with maintaining police standards. I'm sure he'll be doing a great job.
No-one who would look the other way on murder or serious crime is a fit member of any police force. Those still in law enforcement should be fired, and then, where there is sufficient evidence, they should be prosecuted for perverting the course of justice and as accessories to murder. Because if the police can't police themselves properly, then they sure as hell can't be trusted to police anyone else. In the meantime, there's a lesson here for those governments currently engaged in America's "war on terror" about the moral corruption such crusades lead to, and the need for those involved to be fully accountable and maintain a proper respect for human rights. Not even a "war on terror" is an excuse for murder, and those who think it is simply end up feeding the very beast they pretend to be fighting.