While loyalists went on the rampage in east Belfast (again) 100 flag-protestants met in Newtownards to elect a leadership of sorts.
Police injured while flag protestors elect leaders - Headlines - Belfast NewsletterMeanwhile in Newtownards, representatives of flag protestors across Northern Ireland elected 10 people to a committee to decide their way ahead.
Controversial victims campaigner Willie Frazer said he had been elected as an official spokesman for the ‘People’s Forum’.
“There is no chairman, but people who have been elected include Johnny Harvey, Jamie Bryson and Pastor Mark Gordon,” he said. “We had representatives tonight from Rathfriland, Tandragee, Markethill, east Belfast, the Shankill Road, Tiger’s Bay, Coagh and Carrickfergus.”
According to Frazer the immediate aims of The People's Forum are as follows:
Worth noting that these aims involve the suspension of the Stormont Executive and non-cooperation with the recently announced 'Unionist Forum'. Ironically Willie Frazer received a large chunk of the European money for his one-sided 'victims' agenda - perhaps he can tell us what he did with it!“We unanimously supported a return to direct rule and we agreed we will not be talking to politicians until they re-engage with people on the ground,” he said.
“We are saying that the flag has to go back up on Belfast City Hall; one-sided inquiries about the past have to stop; the demonisation of the security forces [during the Troubles] has to stop and there must be an inquiry as to how the £1.5bn peace money from Europe was spent. Who got it?”
'Pastor' Mark Gordon is another who has been feeding at the public trough. He's a former glue-sniffer from Bangor who, when not demanding money for 'community projects', bonfire commitees and loyalist memorial-gardens, wages a campaign of harrassment against the sell-outs and Lundys on (unionist dominated) North Down Borough Council.
Jamie Bryson is one of Pastor Gordon's more vocal acolytes, a 'born-again' Christian, loyalist activist and author of a fictional work about a group of Glasgow Rangers / Sevco 5088 supporters.
Johnny Harvey is a former RAF sergeant from east Belfast who has links to Britain First, a BNP splinter-group.
The other six tribunes of the loyalist spring are yet to be identified but they are likely to be every bit as 'colourful' and every bit as dubious as those mentioned above.
H/T Chris @ Slugger
Loyalist Flag Protests: Meet the Leadership « Slugger O'Toole
Apart from embarrassing the unionist cause, what, if anything, does the People's Forum stand to achieve?