Five things we know, post-Red Sky and post-HET:
1. The HET is discredited beyond repair. Was it the Bourbons that remembered everything and learnt nothing? You’d think the HET would have known how important it was to show themselves as even-handed when dealing with ‘security forces’ cases here. Yet it seems patently clear they did nothing of the sort. Old habits die hard.
2. My old chum Nelson should be rehearsing his final lines for Monday. Assuming, that is, that the DUP don’t plan to brazen it out. If the allegations are true (see what I did there?), Nelson or his adviser has transported his party into a shit-storm of chicanery. Sad to say, I think the DUP will choose to brazen it out. But just in case, I think dear Nelson should have something memorable ready. Maybe take a cue from his name-sake and go out with “Kiss me, Hardy”? I know it doesn't make sense in the present context, but then neither does the handling of the whole Red Sky affair.
4.We’d need to make up our minds about how good we are at resolving conflict. On the one hand, we hear tales of Peter Robinson and Martin McGuinness (or is it just Martin?) advising other trouble-spots in the world on how to move from war to peace; on the other hand we appear hopeless at dealing with the pain that the past has involved for so many people.
5. Anyone who says there should be a hierarchy of victims is either very stupid or very duplicitous. I’m talking here about the families who are left to live with the loss of a loved one, whether that be a British soldier, an RUC man or an IRA volunteer. It’s red herring talk or totally illogical talk to say things like “Yes, but the terrorist had a choice”. What we’re talking about here is simple: not the dead person but the grieving family. Got that OK? If not, maybe you should just should shut up. Better remain silent and be thought a fool than open your gob and prove it.