Most fair minded people on this island want to believe that a British government is prepared to usher in a new dispensation based on equality. Not long before Jean McConville was taken away, she raised the suspicions of her neighbors.
But everyone else knows that the IRA is not an organisation that bows to pressure or which moves on British or unionist terms. It was one of the tallest buildings in Belfast, and the British Army had established an operational post on the top two floors.
Generosity and vision on all sides can turn these current difficulties around and transform a crisis-riven process into an organic and a people centred movement towards a democratic peace settlement. Each of us have struggled in difficult and hard times. She and the children were home one night when they heard a man moaning in pain outside their front door.
One day when Michael McConville was a young boy, his father brought home two pigeons. Our effort is to replace conflict and strife with genuine partnership and equality. When I visited him last summer, at the bright, modern house that he built in a rural area a short drive from Belfast, he showed me a framed photograph of his mother.
A couple of the men were not wearing masks, and Michael realized, to his horror, that the people taking his mother away were not strangers—they were his neighbors.