July 19, 2013

Christopher Hitchens, religion, Northern Ireland and its "Barbaric, sectarian party leaders"



[From 4 minutes into video]

At an Intelligence Squared debate from 2007 (held around the same time as the furthering of the Northern Ireland peace agreement) Christopher Hitchens used the province and its capital city, Belfast, as an example of why religion is bad.

In explaining his position he said that the situation was still driven by "barbaric, sectarian party leaders." 

A fascinating observation from an outsider looking in. An outsider whose been to Belfast a good few times; knows people who've been here; knows the history and the context and is just general supremely intelligent. 

And yes I do know that he proclaimed support for a United Ireland. But he also thought Gerry Adams and other killers were depraved scumbags, writing in Slate Magazine here:
"...The main force that opposed it [peace and equal rights] eventually was the Provisional IRA, which gladly accepted the sectarian challenge and which preached the insane idea that Irish Protestants could be bombed into some deranged concept of a Fenian republic."
So the Republican outlet Irish Central was premature to use Hitchens' support for a United Ireland for their propaganda.

Full video from debate here

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