Handshake

It is said that it originated as a way of showing that you were unarmed.

English barristers do not shake hands because as ‘ learned friends’ that have no need of this display.

There have been many famous handshakes. Hitler/Chamberlin, Nixon/Mao, Sadat/Begin, Rabin/Arafat, McGuinness/ Elizabeth Saxe- Coburg-Gotha.

These have been ground breaking moments.

So why did  George Hamilton , stolid, NIO Gopher, go to West Belfast and shake the hand of  McGuinness, terrorist, gunman, murderer of policemen and others, member of PIRA Northern Command, and sometime member of PIRA Army Council?

What was the hidden agenda? What was the purpose? McGuinness confessed to having been momentarily in  PIRA, like Clinton confessed to smoking dope but not inhaling.

Is there a clue in what was said?

Hamilton  said ” there were serious problems with policing in the past”.

McGuinness said “tonight is another act of reconciliation”.

Leaving aside the  Relate-like language of these two almost former lovers [you don’t bring me flowers anymore], on whose behalf does Hamilton speak? Certainly not those officers killed, maimed or still living daily with their scars.

Certainly not on behalf of my parents, whom he refers to as a “legacy issue”.

Perhaps on behalf of Bryan Harold Harris or Anne Harris? The brother and mother of his deputy, whose father was killed by PIRA on 8 October 1989, on the orders of McGuinness?

Will he look his deputy in the eye on Monday morning?

Is the message from the PSNI that there will be no more arrests of senior Provos? Their head of intelligence Bobby Storey shared the platform. Hamilton had no issue with that.

And what of the other branches of government? Who knows what messages are being whispered into the ears of the judges in the back corridor?

The Secretary of State may not be able to fix welfare reform but there is a lot more on the republican agenda that we don’t see and which can be attended to.

Not all landmark handshakes survive. Hitler, Arafat…maybe we can add Marty and Liz to that list?

But wait! the most famous modern handshake of all! Blair and Gadafy! I’m coming for you soon Tony!

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Wheels within wheels

Liam Clarke, in his article in the Belfast Telegraph on 18 June says: “the Castlereagh raid allowed the IRA to identify the entire agent network in Belfast through a process of elimination.”

It is interesting that this observation, relating to events which occurred in 2002, passed without apparent comment in the media.

Was the “raid” in fact a hostile act by a devilishly cunning SF/IRA unit or was it staged? Was the insider in fact Larry the Chef, a state agent, and was the object of the state to further destabilise SF/IRA?

Larry was never prosecuted, a decision made jointly by the police, who took him out of the jurisdiction and the PPS.

Guess who was asked to investigate? A man call Chilcott.

Could Barney Rowan help?

Imagine the scene at the army council when the product of the raid was tabled. “Gerry, I never knew….you too Marty….gosh and you , and you”. It is unlikely that anyone on the army council failed to make the grade.

So why the silence both from the media and from SF/IRA?

It’s the Peace Process Stupid!

Martin McGuinness a sense of outrage?

Given the remarks by participants in BBC Spotlight and previous accusations by me and others, what does it take for McGuinness to be arrested and questioned?

You might think that the DUP and the UUP would be outraged on behalf of their constituents but they are silent. I wonder why?

Will this community never face the truth?

Let me be clear, as politicians are keen to say.

Martin McGuinness is a multiple murderer who was in charge of northern command PIRA and a member of the army council. He probably retains those roles.

He was instrumental in the killing of my parents. He has been accused of all these matters before yet he has not chosen to contest the allegations in court.

I wonder does he have an assurance from the state that he will not be prosecuted?

Shall we ask Barra McGrory, his former lawyer? Now , God help us , Director of [some] Public Prosecutions.

The murderers of my parents

On this day, twenty five years ago, my Dad drove his car out of the driveway and parked it on the road. He had been retired from the RUC for three years, having been mortared at New Barnsley, where his colleague Dessie Dobbin, was killed. It is likely , given the forensic findings, that he checked underneath it before he moved it from the drive. At about ten o’clock, he and my mother drove off. About four hundred yards down the road a bomb, placed underneath the vehicle exploded. My Dad was dead on arrival at the Mater Hospital. My Mum , having sustained severe head injuries , died the next day.

PIRA claimed responsibility and Adams said it might not have been a good operation. But then , he was never in the IRA.

The cause of Irish unity was not progressed one inch but my daughter never knew her Grandparents.

The persons responsible for these murders were as follows.

First there had to be an active service unit, carrying out these brave acts. There were three operational in the greater Belfast area in 1990.

Bomb Team A, as I shall call it , was comprised, inter alia, of Rosaleen McCorley MLA and James Donnelly. They were arrested in January 1990 in the act of placing a bomb under a policeman’s car.

Bomb Team B had in its ranks  Rosena Brown and Davy Adams [brother of Gerry]. It might have had Martin McGartland also , but he has denied this to me. Brown, Paul McCullough and Stephen Canning were arrested in  1992 in possession of a bomb.

Bomb Team C was comprised of Martin McGartland, Fitzsimmons and McFadden. They carried out a number of operations before McFadden and Fitzsimmons were arrested in North Belfast in December 1990, in possession of two bombs and a gun. Interestingly, McGartland was not at the scene.

Therefore in June 1990 , either bomb team B or C could have carried out the attack.

Councillor Sean Keenan took part in the attack. He was rewarded for his efforts on 7 June when a UDA/UFF team tried to kill him. He had already been shot in the company of Gerry Adams. Keenan’s house was heavily fortified. I wonder why? Did the state pay for it?

The attack was scouted by Sean Maguire , from Ardoyne. He was an “intelligence officer” and a state agent , a tout. He betrayed Larry Marley to the Loyalists, in order to please his British masters. He is now PR adviser to Martin McGuinness and can be spotted, if you are quick enough , in the background,behind Grandpa McGuinness on the Hill. I wonder where Sean banked his money?

The operations officer, responsible for coordinating attacks, was Paddy Fern. The bomb was provided by McCartney, who was Quartermaster.

The police have told me that they know the identities of the bomb makers. Bombs were kept in the “Rock Streets” off the Falls.

Next in the chain of command was Spike Murray.

The OC Belfast was Brian Gillen an agent of the Crown.

The operation had to be approved by Martin McGuinness, head of northern command. Read Ed Moloney’s book about this [p347] and also the allegations made by Scappaticci, in conversations with journalists.

Both the RUC Special Branch [SB] and the Army’s Force Research Unit [FRU] were involved in the recruiting and handling of agents. Some agents were placed in organisations, others were recruited from their ranks.

The purpose of an agent was to report on the activities of the terrorist group so as to enable the state to disrupt its activities and arrest its members.

There were no rules governing the use of these agents in 1990, particularly in relation to the criminal actives in which they might participate. Issues arose as to what would happen if an agent told his handlers that he was about to take part in a crime or if he declared that he had in fact committed an offence.

De Silva documents the attempts made by the RUC and the Army to obtain guidance from the state. He also documents how the state consistently failed to give such guidance and deliberately dragged its heels on the issue.

Without any structure both SB and FRU worked in a vacuum. They had agents placed in the heart of Sinn Fein/IRA, many are still there. Apart from Donaldson and ‘Scap’ obviously. I’m not convinced that Scap is Stake Knife. What about Padraic Wilson, does he fit the profile?

SB and FRU played God. De Silva documents how at one time the Loyalists planned to kill Oliver Kelly, solicitor. This seemed like a good plan until the state placed a higher value on him, because he was a moderating influence on hunger strikers, whereupon FRU told the Loyalists to back off. The same happened to a plan to kill Adams in 1987. Why was Adams so valuable then? Finucane was apparently disposable.

In assessing a planned terrorist attack SB/FRU considered two issues:

1. The value of the target to the state, or not.

2. Any potential danger to their “asset’ the agent.

Consider my list of agents, above. They must have provided SB/FRU with a wealth of information. Not every operation could be stopped because the agent’s colleagues and masters would become suspicious. There are only so many times that extra police can flood an area or an Army checkpoint appears.

So every so often a attack has to get through, even though SB/FRU have been warned. Or perhaps the agent ‘forgot’ to tell his handlers.

So, on the morning of 6th June 1990, nobody came to the rescue of James and Ellen Sefton.

After my Dad had checked his car and left it outside the house, PIRA planted a bomb underneath it. I know this because the ATO opined that the car travelled as far as it did because the timer, set for an hour, had not wound down before  the start of the journey.

Ultimately, the state is responsible for their deaths.

My parents had a right to life and an expectation that the state would protect them. Instead the state protected the agent and the process. Read the documents in de Silva relating to the prosecution of Nelson to get a feel for how far the state would go to protect the process.

Although the RUC and FRU were not assisted by the state in how to run informers,that is no excuse. The RUC was staffed by ordinary men and women from this Province, some of whom would have known my Dad. Shame on them for being part of an organisation which practised this witchcraft.

Perhaps even now, twenty five years on, one of them might have the decency to come clean, before they have a chat with their Maker.

I am , of course, leaving aside the prospect of a Republican having a conscience.

I am not alone in having suffered this injustice. I am not , by a long way, the worst example.

I hope, though, that others, similarly afflicted may be given some encouragement to enquire into their own tragedies.

Sinn Fein/IRA’s touts

Even as I write, in England, Boys and Girls , educated at Oxbridge, are wrestling with a problem.

It is this.

Given that sooner or later the enormity of the participation of senior Sinn Fein/IRA personnel as state touts will emerge, how should the state  manage it? Also, how do we stop the Irish rabbiting on about the past?

Clearly, blanket denial is not an answer.

These clever Boys and Girls, schooled from childhood to take on the mantle of those who ran an Empire upon which the sun never set, will have to come up with an answer to bamboozle the Paddies.

We may be already seeing the first fruits of their labour.

“Well placed sources” and “veteran journalists” will start to mention the unmentionable. Books will be written. Reference has already been made in the last few days to Adams’ family.

I believe that I have already articulated the notion that the state knew years ago about the Adams Family Values and probably also about the Cahill family. They would have used this information for their own ends.

But I digress. The tactic is to reveal sufficient for the masses to be a little shocked, but not a lot. Slowly but surely they become used to it.

“Of course the Army Council were all informers” says the man in the pub/golf club/church/garden centre, “everybody knows that”

Then as the Boys and Girls point out , distracted by Britain’s Got Talent and other Circuses, if not bread, the masses  will move on.

Jimmy Savile has already been replaced by Sepp as the Bogey Man.

The aim is to numb, neutralise and normalise so that nobody asks the hard questions about the state’s involvement in murders that could have been avoided. “It’s all terribly sad and it was a cock up not a conspiracy so  let’s move on.”

Sadly , for the Boys and Girls and their Mandarin Masters, a few good people will continue to ask awkward questions.

What’s Irish for eeney,meeney, miney,moe?

Readers of this blog will know that part of my case against the state is that at the time of the murders of my parents, PIRA was so thoroughly penetrated that the state not only knew who killed them but could have prevented it and had agents participating in the crimes.

Anne Cadwallader, in the opening pages of chapter eight of  her remarkable book “Lethal Allies” articulates how victims feel.

“He is a bit obsessed you know…”

Here is what  de Silva has noted , when he investigated the murder of Patrick Finucane.

The Commanding Officer of the Force Research Unit said; “You cannot report on a terrorist organisation unless you have someone at the centre of things”.

In March 1991 the Secretary of State for Defence wrote: “we cannot expect to obtain valuable intelligence from agents that are not at the heart of the target organisation or group.”

So, let’s think. In PIRA, who was at the “centre” or the “heart”?

No, surely not! That can’t be right! Gerry, Marty, Bobby, the Army Council, Northern Command, Belfast CO?

Readers might accept that there would be little point in recruiting the woman cleaning Connolly House or even one of Gerry’s bodyguards.

So, who were the agents involved in the events of 6th June 1990?

Patience, Dear Reader!