Political Leaders Are Not Listening

Here is a second set of images showing the “peace or protocol” poster that has appeared in PUL areas in the city, three in east Belfast – along the Newtownards Road – and two from north Belfast – Oakmount Drive and Ballysillan Road. Two others in norther Belfast were seen previously in A Return To Violence, which also explains the poster.

For the murals along “Freedom Corner” see 50th Anniversary; for the black-and-white mural, see Please Pay Here; for the banner, see Choose One Or The Other.

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Loyalist Movilla

Here is a gallery of images from the junction of Upper Movilla Street and Georges Street in Newtownards. In the image above, a handdrawn UDA emblem can be faintly seen, behind the modern board that has fallen down (possibly off a house in Wallaces Street). In a separate post, see IRA Council Demands.

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Ulster Welcomes Her King & Queen

… to the state opening of the first parliament of Northern Ireland – with new prime minister James Craig – at Belfast City Hall on June 22nd, 1921. The monarchs in question are King George V and Queen Mary. Pathé has video of the royal arrival and travel to City Hall. In his speech, George appealed “to all Irishmen to pause, to stretch out the hand of forbearance and conciliation, to forgive and to forget, and to join in making for the land which they love a new era of peace, contentment, and goodwill.”

For the coat of arms, see previously The Lion And The Elk. It is not clear whom the twelve framed portraits depict. The six gentlemen in the background are the members of the original Executive Committee, which served as a cabinet to the Commons and Senate – for a full list, with offices, and the original photograph, see WP. Carson’s statue at the entrance to Stormont is on the left. The photograph of spectators at the parade (on the far left) can be seen in this News Letter article. The photograph of the royals in their carriage can be seen here and of the King inspecting the guard here.

The project was undertaken by Rathcoole Friends of the Somme (Fb), with support from the Housing Executive’s Community Cohesion unit.

See also Floreat Ultona in south Belfast.

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Those Old Grey Walls Still Firmly Standing

The sights and sounds of Irish Street and Londonderry: (clockwise from right) a verse from Londonderry On The Foyle (youtube) in a frame of the walls of the city of Derry – “But once more I’m coming home aboard a steamship/On Lough Foyle once more I’m passing by Culmore/And I see those old grey walls still firmly standing/There ’round my city Londonderry on the Foyle”; East Bank (Irish Street) Protestant Boys (Fb) on parade; Carson and the signing of the 1912 Covenant; St Columb’s Cathedral; Irish Street FC (Fb).

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The Loyalist Executioner

Here are dozen South East Antrim UDA boards along Shanlea Drive in Ballycraigy (Larne). The first four commemorate the massive bonfire built each year (see Commonwealth Handling Equipment) – “We lead, others follow”.

The middle are the most violent, showing volunteers wearing balaclavas and carrying assault rifles, with a poem about killing “Provos” which here seems to mean simply Catholics, as no IRA members were killed in either Ormeau or Greysteel. “The Provo’s fear the reaper/From the UFF he comes/The loyalist executioner/He brings judgment with his gun//He strikes when no one expects him too/From behind his hood cold eyes/The reaper brings stiff justice/As another Provo dies//He brought revenge for the Bann/ In Ormeau bookies five/And for the Shankill bombing/Greysteel was his reply//Sometimes his lust is chilling/As he goes about his task/The Provo’s fear the reaper/There’s death behind his mask.” There was a poem with the same sentiment in south Belfast (see The Reaper Come To Call) next to a mural of Eddie The Trooper.

Of the final four (the right-hand side) the historical photograph was the basis for a mural in south Belfast.

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Time To Decide!

Here is a selection of anti-Protocol placards from the Caw, Londonderry and Newbuildings. Above: a PSNI officer with a Sinn Féin badge – “PSNI – destroying the loyalist community since 4th Nov. 2001. In the pocket of Sinn Féin.” (November 4th, 2001 is the date the PSNI was created.) For the farmer’s wife protecting the farm, see Deserted, well I can stand alone. Below: “Newbuildings says No to Irish Sea border”, “Loyalist Newbuildings will never accept a border in the Irish Sea”, “The Belfast Agreement has been broken – the deal’s off”, and “Our forefathers fought for our freedom and rights/No border in the sea or we continue the fight”.

For similar placards in Moygashel, see Belfast Agreement Null And Void.

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The Flax And The Lily

The orange lily and the (pale blue) flax flower take their place around the Ulster Banner alongside the English rose and Scottish thistle, and the Irish shamrock is retained even in the presence of the lily. The flax is perhaps included because we are in the Factory area of Larne, near the site of a (former) linen mill. The Welsh daffodil is excluded. The detail above is part of a wider board “Boyne Square celebrates 100 years of Northern Ireland”; the flanking emblems of the Boyne Defenders (LOL 1297), Rangers Supporters club (Larne Branch) – which also uses the shamrock – Boyne Square Bonfire Forum, and Larne & District Great War Society and included below; the emblems of three flute bands can be seen in Norman Anderson and The Gunrunners.

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The Sleeping Giant Has Awoken

Japan attacked the US naval base at Pearl Harbor (near Honolulu, Hawaii) on December 7th, 1941. Even before the USA announced its consequent entry into WWII, Admiral Isoruku Yamamoto wondered if the effect of the attack would be “to awaken the sleeping giant and to fill him with terrible resolve”. In the case of today’s images, the sleeping giant is a lion, and the lion is the UVF 1st East Antrim, with units not just in Larne, Ballyduff, Ballyclare, Greenisland, Glengormley, Monkstown, Rathcoole, Carrickfergus, and Whitehead, but in Drumchapel (Glasgow, Scotland), Springburn (Glasgow, Scotland), Possilpark (Glasgow, Scotland), Paisley (Scotland), Falkirk (Scotland), Liverpool (England), Blackpool (England), Corby (England), and Blairgowrie (Scotland). Balaclava’d men with ArmaLites stand ready: “Our forefathers fought for our freedom & rights/No border in the sea or we continue the fight.”

The combination of a free-floating Northern Ireland with Britain (in the first image, above) is rare in muraling, but necessitated by Brexit and the Protocol.

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The Orange State

The orange lily began appearing in murals with some frequency in the mid-2000s (with one earlier appearance in Londonderry; compare this to posts with orange lilies at Peter Moloney – Murals and at Extramural Activity). It became part of the logo of the Orange Order in 2007 – see Design Research Group – and there was an attempt to re-brand the Twelfth as “Orangefest” (Irish Times). It is used in this centenary celebration board to make it clear that Northern Ireland was created as a Protestant and unionist state.

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What We Have We Hold

This Village board celebrates the Covenant, Ulster Volunteers, and the 36th (Ulster) Division, with photographs both vintage and contemporary.

For the photograph of Carson signing the Covenant, and an earlier mural, see Betting Office. For the photograph of the car-mounted gun, and an earlier mural recreating the photo, see UVF 75th Anniversary. For images akin to the contemporary photos, see these BelTel galleries one | two of the 100th anniversary celebrations of the Ulster Volunteers.

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