Twenty seven years ago

On this day, twenty seven years ago , the PIRA bomb team, which I have publicly named, [ all of whom are still alive, some active in the SF/IRA election campaign in North Belfast] killed my father and so wounded my mother that she died the next day.

Let’s focus on  my mother, Ellen Sefton, aged 66, retired. Her only connection to “the conflict ” as SF/IRA now call it, was to be married to my father and to be a Protestant. No words of apology were ever uttered  by PIRA about her  death. She was the subject of a sectarian assassination involving collusion by the State, no different to those killings suggested by republicans. In all the forty years I knew her she never uttered a word against Roman Catholics. She was ahead of her time. She  befriended gays and Jews and loved the  heady atmosphere of New York. She loved its words and its freedom. She loved her family. She looked after  her mother till she died at 92.  She was full of life. She was my biggest fan. Perhaps that’s why it hurts so much.

Twenty seven years on , the State campaign of ‘forgive and forget’ is still being waged. Useful young idiots , solicitors, businessmen etc. are tapped up with promises of places on NGOs, slap up dinners, and photographs with the great and the good; if only they would embrace the “Peace Process”. The hurt and damage that these people cause  is beyond measure.

For all of these 27 years the State has lied to me, about the big stuff, its involvement  with PIRA, with Libya -and about the little stuff, who knew what about  UCBTs. The State knows who killed my parents, why would they not? They had so many informers that  by 1990 they had over run PIRA. So why don’t they come clean? What dead hand prevents disclosure? Who protects the like of Sean Maguire? To what end?

Who could believe the British Government about any security issue, old or current? A lesson that many of us have learned and many of the relatives of  the dead of Manchester and London will soon learn. Nothing is ever as it seems and the State will always lie to you.

I miss my parents every day.

I’ll continue to fight for them till my dying breath. It has cost me every material thing  I owned  but that doesn’t matter.

If I don’t do it , who will?

And I still own myself….

Gripping the IRA :Part II

It is useful to set out the correspondence in extenso.  [Lawyers love Latin, no more so than Lord Carswell,  that Old Instonian, whose surprising expenses claims for attendance at the House of Lords were set out in extenso in the Sunday Times.]

But I digress.

Here is the correspondence.

IMG_3486

fullsizeoutput_266bVersion 2IMG_3485What is surprising about this exchange , coming in late 1988, is the pessimism shown by Peter Bell.

Note his comment “there still remains too much adhoccery in the way Whitehall grips…the kind of problem which IRA terrorism is likely to present us with over the coming months”.

Ivor Roberts has no firm proposals, in reply, except for a jolly good lunch. [Your club or mine?]

The exchange does not sit well with the analysis by those who say that by this point PIRA was heavily infiltrated and was being paralysed.

It does, however , point to the likelihood that each of the agencies, RUC , Box and Army , were very much doing their own thing with informers. That leads on to the question whether or not the RUC, with a duty to preserve life, could ever have known if informers to the Army and Box were participating in murder.

Re the Boyd Group, TOP [I] and the Assessment Staff Machinery, that is all for another day, Dear Reader.

V and A Consultancy

My consultancy has been launched.

Visit http://www.vandaconsultancy.com

It is aimed at advocacy training for lawyers, McKenzie friends and laymen. It also can provide training for  expert witnesses. It can also give those with legacy issues a voice and the means to pursue truth and justice for their loved ones.

It is based on my experience as a barrister and as a son of two murdered parents.

I’ve now acquired expertise in researching the past and dealing with the inscrutable senior command of the PSNI.

It’s time that everyone in the United Kingdom scrutinised more closely the activities of the State in Northern Ireland since 1969.

I can be contacted via the website

 

“Gripping the IRA”

Much has been said about the security triumph which, the Brits say, halted the IRA and led to the Good Friday agreement.

In  late 1988  a different picture was being painted by the Security Coordination Department of the Foreign Office. In a letter to the Northern Ireland Office , Ivor  Roberts said that “MPSB, Box 500 and the RUC each have their role on the intelligence side”.  He remarked  that Operation Flavius was the exception rather than the rule and that operational matters such as the Eksund follow up are also “uncoordinated”. He said that the Security Service ” rarely get round to telling us what we want to know”.

Operation Flavius was the shooting of three IRA members in Gibraltar. Roberts complained that nobody would tell him of the detailed provenance of the Eksund’s cargo. On the latter point, the cargo came from Libya but it is very likely that the Secret Intelligence Service and possibly the Security Service had agents among those who purchased the arms  and particularly the Semtex in Libya. This may well explain the reluctance of HMG to press for compensation for those killed and injured by PIRA Semtex bombs.

There were also issues between the Foreign Office and security coordination.

He characterised the position as “entrenched interests”.

He had no solution to propose, reflecting that the responsible ministers “are not, of course without their own vested interests.”

The image is of each party, RUC, Army and MI5 ploughing its own furrow, to the detriment of security. It gives further credence, of course, to the case that many killings and other operations were carried out by one arm of the State, unknown to another. Collusion by the State was not directed just against Republicans.

Ice cream, Gillen and the state

Many of you , Dear Readers, who have read about the book; “They killed the Ice Cream Man” will not be surprised by the allegations made by the Larmours.

Since I started my research in earnest two years ago, veteran observers had no difficulty in telling me about these practices. It was well known that senior members of PIRA were state agents and permitted to continue directing terrorism. They would have been little use to the spooks otherwise. On occasions they were permitted to commit murder, either directly or as someone who was involved in planning or directing. Look at the activities of  Loyalist Mark Haddock for a mirror image of the practice.

One name that came up frequently was Brian Gillen. My informants were in no doubt that he had been turned by the state and that he continued to operate in the role of Belfast Brigade commander. I named him as a participant in my blog ” The murderers of my parents”.

I have no difficulty in stating that he is the person referred to by the Armours and by by Ed Moloney. I have also made this allegation , some time ago to the Police Ombudsman.

Just as disturbing as these revelations are, what is more disturbing is that the State and its employees and ex employees refuse to admit that these tactics were used. I have had assurances from the PSNI, the Police Ombudsman and the Secretary of State that there was no advance intelligence of the murders of my parents . The same bodies have denied that an informer participated in the planning or execution of the murders.

A glance at my blog will show the one or more State agency is telling lies.

The Director of Public Prosecutions declined to direct the police to investigate Martin McGuinness’ role in the murders of my parents, despite Ed Moloney naming him in his book; “A secret History of the IRA”. He was quick to direct investigations into the Army on similar information. The Attorney General, despite his close interest in major issues such as abortion and gay discrimination, has declined to direct a fresh inquest, which would be required to examine special branch files.

The questions for readers are these. Are all those, like me, who have published names and activities, deluded? Or are we just scraping the surface of the State’s involvement in the dirty war? Is the State terrified of what might become known? Are Adams McGuinness and others equally frightened?

I’m given hope by the Hillsborough families. One day the truth will be known.

Moussa Koussa and the Chief Constable

I wrote to George in December 2015 about evidence that Andrew MacKinlay had given the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee. He said that MK “would have known about Semtex and the supplying of arms to the IRA over many years and probably authorised it”. I asked George if MK was interviewed by his officers when MK had his stop over in the UK and if he intended to seek MK’s extradition from Qatar.

At the end of January 2016 “Will Kerr OBE Assistant Chief Constable, Crime Operations” replied. This all came as a big surprise to him and , no , they did not interview him and no, he was “not currently being sought in connection with an offence in Northern Ireland”. He did say that they were trying to get an address for Mr McKinlay [sic] so that they could “establish whether he possesses evidence of Mr Koussa having committed a criminal  offence”. I suppose they might ask Mr MacKinlay who received the Semtex in Ireland, though that might be embarrassing for the NI Executive.

Of course, George could have popped in to say hello to MK , when he visited Qatar recently. The Belfast Telegraph reported that George had an all expenses visit to Doha and stayed at the  luxury St Regis Hotel. Given that MK was booted out of his suite at the Four Seasons Hotel and now lives in a small house , it was the least George could have done to have taken him for a slap up meal at his place.

There, he could have asked him to relate his life as a CIA/MI5 agent and tell George stirring tales of shipping Semtex to Martin McGuinness and other the other chaps that George shared a platform with in West Belfast. He could have given George a rough estimate of how many people died as a result. What George refers to as “legacy issues”. MK could have explained how MI6 rescued him from Libya and flew him on an executive jet to the UK before MK retired to Qatar.

Mk and George could have chatted about flogging , torture and the deaths of 1,000 workers in Doha. They could have mentioned corruption around the World Cup.

George could have told him that the PSNI always “follows the evidence”.

Alas the PSNI’s “human rights based policing approach” seems not to have borne fruit and George came home with no new news about MK.

Meanwhile I have this assurance from Will. “if evidence exists relating to offences in Northern Ireland, we will consider what further action is necessary in accordance with our statutory obligations”.

Take it easy Moussa!

Whom to trust?

When I was a boy, long time ago now, I used to go for walks with my Dad on  a Sunday morning. One thing he said , which struck me was ‘note how many trade union leaders become Lords’.

This started me on the path of believing that  nothing is ever as it seems.

If I were the controller of MI5 I would seek to bring within my purview every renegade and rebel in the Kingdom. I would black mail them with their peccadilloes . Sex, money, drugs, terrorism [that should cover most Ulster politicians].

Which brings me to Willie Frazer.

I have tried to love Willie, God knows.

I have followed his talking head series.

I have watched him pop up in every conceivable point of tension in the Six Counties.

I have followed his dyslexic ramblings.

I have hoped for a successful  outcome to just one of the many causes that he has espoused.

Willie was of course identified by the High Court as an associate of loyalist terrorist organisations. See re F 2005 NI 280.

Why is it that he reminds me of the unionists of old who promised the stars and delivered nothing? Think of the recent documentary on the shooting of an entirely innocent man on the Shankill Road. Which unionist ever took up that case?

Let’s consider the killings at Kingsmills. Nothing that Willie has done over the last several years has produced one document to assist the families. Now, after threats to march in Dublin and reports that he was bought off, the initial hearing into the deaths has produced nothing.

The outcome for the families? Nothing.

The consequence for Willie? He continues to rampage about without any visible means of support.

Or perhaps I’m being too naive…….

 

Villiers’ rubber stamp

So the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland wants an assessment of paramilitary activity.

Where to turn?

To MI5/PSNI of course, silly girl.

But no. Let’s have three Wise Persons. They will compile a report and all will be happy.

So.

MI5/PSNI compile a report.

It is given to the Wise Persons, only one of whom has any experience of terrorism, crime or naughty people.

They read it, meet the authors, probe the authors, ask them for a bit more info and declare themselves happy.

Et voila! The report of the experts, the PSNI/MI5 is deemed good and accepted lock , stock and [missing]barrels.

Not a mention of Semtex.

Am I mad?

Answers on a postcard…

The dog that didn’t bark

In the Sherlock Holmes story, the Adventure of Silver Blaze, the following exchange takes place.

Gregory [Scotland Yard detective]: “is there any other point to which you wish to draw my attention?”

Holmes: “to the curious incident of the dog in the night”

Gregory: ” the dog did nothing in the night.” [Gregory was trained  at Garnerville]

Holmes: “That was the curious incident”

Patrick Fitzpatrick had his house raided and he was found in possession of a Glock pistol. It would appear that the firearm had no connection to either shooting. Is this the best the state can do?

Obviously an informer was involved in the arrest of Fitzpatrick, or perhaps they ‘were following the evidence’?

Was he a sop?

If the state, Special Branch and MI5 do not know who killed Davison and McGuigan, we are living in a dangerous world.

They penetrated the IRA thirty years ago.

The curious incident is the lack of evidence against any significant player.

The present play acting at Knock is disgraceful.

The Humpty Dumpty world of the Chief Constable

“When use a word” , Humpty Dumpty said in a rather scornful tone,”it means just what I chose it to mean, neither more nor less”. [Lewis Carroll, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and through the Looking -Glass]

For a masterly summary of the position, see Ed Moloney in today’s Irish Times.

And so to George Hamilton’s finessing of Supt Geddes’ last statement. Goodness know how many lawyer hours went into it. How many drafts the SOS rejected. What Box had to say about it.

George says that PIRA is a paramilitary organisation, devoted to peaceful means, just like the Salvation Army.

Here are my questions for George:

  1. Has this organisation access to arms and explosives?
  2. Has it killed anyone in the last twenty years?
  3. Who shot Martin McGartland?
  4. If PIRA is committed to politics, who are its politicians?

I’ll bet that I won’t get a reply.

Hamilton says that they will go where the evidence leads. It’s a statement like Hercule Poirot saying ” I suspect everyone and I suspect no-one” [you do the Belgian accent].

In the twenty five years since the murder of my parents, the police have declined to follow the evidence, to the Belfast brigade of the IRA and onwards to McGuinness. What hope is there that anything has changed?

So, when George uses a word, it means precisely what his political masters, who appointed him and who control him, want it to mean.