Community must look to itself for solutions – CRJ

Tensions within the community here in North Belfast following the recent tragic and well-documented suicides of these young men are high.

It has also been widely stated that pressure from a specific armed group has been a contributing factor in these events.

The group in question must through its leadership both locally and nationally take responsibility and accountability for whatever part it has played. If and where pressure is being applied, then it must stop.

Anti-social behaviour within our community is a big problem-but it must be tackled in the proper manner, Community Restorative Justice should be that vehicle. CRJ provides a safe, secure and confidential environment to deal with these issues and individuals. CRJ is unequivocally non-violent and affords equal respect and compassion to both the victim and the offender.

To focus solely on one factor, as being the whole cause and effect of what has happened is wrong, it is wrong because it then does not allow us to see what other composite factors may be influencing the mental health of any young person who may be contemplating this option. CRJ cannot be strong enough in stressing that suicide is never the answer. No problem is ever that bad that, with the appropriate help and support, it cannot be surpassed.

Our community needs to go through, and we accept that it will be painful, a process of self-analysis. We must look to ourselves first to find the questions and the answers before we attempt to formulate the solutions.

What are the factors that affect the mental health of our young people? Why are they disaffected within our community? We need to realise that suicides of this nature are happening right across this city, even in areas where pressure from armed groups does not exist.

We must ask the affects of broken homes, alcohol abuse, drug abuse (including prescription drugs), neglect, lack of employment opportunity, failings within the education system, depression, low self-esteem and indeed fear and anxiety of threat, real or perceived, from an armed group.
We as a community must ask ourselves what we can do – how we can make the statutory bodies, who have a responsibility to provide adequate provision to prevent these problems, accountable.

Community Restorative Justice has moved from the Crumlin Rd to new premises on the Antrim Rd. We are under funded and under resourced – we receive no funding whatsoever from any statutory agency. With adequate provision we can be even more effective in our work within the community.
Anyone who believes themselves to be under threat from an armed group should contact us at CRJ immediately, we cannot help someone if we don’t know they need help.

The community must take responsibility for the solutions needed, Anti-social activity must not be allowed to take hold within the community – young people should not feel that suicide is any kind of a solution! We need to promote what is socially and morally right and ensure that our community identity is a positive one.

We must volunteer our time and our help, our thoughts and our skills to make this happen, every one has something to contribute, either by volunteering to train with CRJ, joining a residents group or community watch scheme and indeed by supporting the work of the P.I.P.S project which can be contacted through the Ardoyne Focus Group. CRJ can be contacted on 02890747888.

Breandán Clarke Community Restorative Justice North Belfast Co-Coordinator.

Journalist:: Staff Reporter

Images of Belfast, peace process, murals - Republican News :: CRAZYFENIAN'S Pics of Republican Murals-Belfast

**Taken from the Danny Morrison board:

In addition to the original Webshots location, where you can send e-cards made from CRAZYFENIAN'S mural pics or download them to a free screensaver program for your computer, you can now see CRAZYFENIAN'S beautiful work in the Danny Morrison Photo Gallery by clicking here. Enjoy!



**The post following this one has the details, but I am putting this up and begging you to do something very simple that may save a man's life. Highlight the text of the following letter and copy and paste it to an email. Sign your name and city, address it to minister@justice.ie and send it off immediately. Add a personal note if you want to. It will take less than a minute. Go raibh maith agat.

Minister Michael McDowell, T.D.

Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform
72-76 St. Stephen's Green
Dublin 2

Dear Minister Michael McDowell,

I am writing to register my great concern for the continuing imprisonment of Mick Hegarty at Portlaoise Prison. I am aware that Mr. Hegarty, who is age 51, is gravely ill and should not be in prison at all. Visitors have told me that he is extremely emaciated and must feed himself through a tube for EIGHTEEN (18) hours a day in very unsanitary conditions. I am aware that he has had surgery this month to implant new feeding tube in his stomach. His doctors outside have warned him that he must gain several stone immediately or face severe endangerment to his chances of survival. Under the present conditions it seems very clear that this man should not be in prison at all. Please grant Mick Hegarty compassionate release to finish his sentence at home, where he might have a better chance at a full recovery. Please don’t allow another prisoner to die needlessly in an Irish prison – please remember Kevin Murray and the needless suffering and untimely death he suffered after many months of medical neglect at Portlaoise Prison.

Yours very sincerely,



Subject: Mick Hegarty – ACTION REQUEST
Date: Friday, February 20, 2004

Irish Political Prisoner MICK HEGARTY continues to suffer apallingly
at Portlaoise Prison and would very much welcome your get-well cards
and letters. (ADDRESS BELOW).

Mick Hegarty was admitted to hospital twice recently to have a new
feeding tube inserted into his stomach. Over the past year, Mick
has been forced to feed himself intravenously for eighteen hours a day,
from 8:00 PM at night until 2:00 PM the following day, under very
unsanitary conditions at Portlaoise prison.

Mick's doctors have warned him that he must gain several stone
immediately or he may not survive. Mick continues to lose weight,
and should immediately be released to recover in the healthier
environment of home.

The IFC is making an urgent appeal for your EMAILS AND LETTERS to
the DUBLIN JUSTICE DEPARTMENT on Mick Hegarty's behalf; urging his
immediate compassionate parole to be allowed to recover at home.

Please voice your humanitarian concerns for the suffering and grave
endangerment this man is enduring. Mick is very weak, and extremely
ill, and is hardly an escape risk or a threat to the public.

Please go HERE for sample letter and INSTANT E-MAIL ACCESS to the
Dublin Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform:



Send Get-Well cards to MICK HEGARTY:

Mick Hegarty
Portlaoise Prison - E4
Portlaoise, Co. Laois

The Irish Freedom Committee®


Britain: home secretary proposes "pre-emptive" justice

From World Socialist Web Site

Britain: home secretary proposes “pre-emptive” justice
By Richard Tyler
10 February 2004

In the film Minority Report, set in the year 2054, the state has the power to imprison those who have not yet committed any crime. In February 2004, Home Secretary David Blunkett is proposing that the British state should have the same power to incarcerate men and women based on “pre-emptive” charges, before a crime is committed.

In an interview with the Press Association, Blunkett has outlined measures that would overturn centuries-old legal precedents. Trials could be held without juries, behind closed doors; judges, and with lawyers vetted by the security services before being allowed to hear a case; evidence could be withheld from the defence “in the interests of national security” and the standard of evidence lowered.

Once again, these draconian measures are being justified with reference to the threat from terrorism. According to a Home Office spokesperson, Blunkett wants tighter laws because the threat of being jailed does not deter suicide bombers from committing attacks. (It should be noted that to date, there has not been a single suicide bombing in Britain.)

The measures are similar to those that the government has already legislated for—under the same pretext of combating terrorism—that are already being employed against foreign nationals.

The proposals were denounced by leading civil rights lawyer Gareth Pierce, who represented five of the “Birmingham Six,” falsely accused and imprisoned for 17 years on charges of being IRA terrorists. Pierce compared the present indefinite detention of 16 foreign nationals in British jails, without being charged or facing a trial, with the US imprisonment of alleged terrorist suspects at Guantanamo Bay: “The Home Secretary says he wishes to extend secret hearings to all those accused of the mere suspicion of terrorism, even though short of evidence that could be proved beyond reasonable doubt in a public trial before a jury.”

The home secretary’s latest proposals were an “experiment into how willing the public of this country and those concerned in the passage of legislation are to allow basic safeguards to be jettisoned without protest.”

Shami Chakrabarti, director of the civil rights organisation Liberty, said, “What is to be left of democracy or the rule of law in such a topsy-turvy world? No juries? No presumption of innocence? No defence lawyers or trials held in public?”

Baroness Helena Kennedy QC, who has acted as defence counsel in several high-profile terrorism cases including the 1984 bombing of the Conservative Party conference in Brighton, called the proposals “an affront to the rule of law.” Kennedy, who sits on the Labour benches in the House of Lords, added, “It is as if David Blunkett takes his lessons on jurisprudence from Robert Mugabe,” the president of Zimbabwe.

Mark Littlewood, Liberty campaigns director, told the press, “Britain already has the most draconian anti-terror laws in Western Europe. To add to these by further undermining trial by jury and radically reducing the burden of proof is wholly unacceptable.”

Under the banner of the “war against terrorism,” the Labour government has introduced a series of measures stripping away fundamental democratic and legal rights: the Terrorism Act 2000, the Anti-Terrorism, Crime & Security Act 2001, and the Civil Contingencies Bill presently before parliament.

For 30 years, “The Troubles” in Northern Ireland were accompanied by IRA bombings in British cities and the assassination of senior politicians and military figures. However, even then, the draconian and undemocratic Prevention of Terrorism Act (PTA), introduced in 1974 by the Labour government of Harold Wilson, was never put on the statute books permanently and was subject to an annual vote in parliament for it to be renewed.

Under Prime Minister Tony Blair and Home Secretary David Blunkett, the emergency provisions of the 1974 PTA have been vastly extended and made semi-permanent. Indeed, one minister ominously described the Civil Contingencies Bill as an attempt to make emergency powers legislation “future-proof.”

Those suspected of being “terrorists” face extended pre-charge detention; the home secretary can proscribe organisations and arrest its members; and police chief constables can designate whole cities and counties for stop-and-search action if this is considered “expedient to preventing terrorism”.

Britain is the only European Union country to suspend sections of the European Convention on Human Rights banning detention without trial. As a result, the 16 foreign nationals imprisoned under the government’s present terrorism legislation are in a legal limbo, where they are neither charged with any crime nor can they seek the court’s intervention unless it is to confess they are guilty.

The appeals process open to the detainees is neither impartial nor subject to public scrutiny. Secret evidence is admissible, behind closed doors and under exclusion of the internee and his representative. In judging whether the detainee should remain in prison, the judges must only be satisfied on the “balance of probabilities.” This is a much lower standard of evidence, usually applicable in civil cases, as opposed to the test of “beyond a reasonable doubt” that applies in all criminal cases where a custodial sentence is possible.

Blunkett now wants to bring in legislation that will enable him to detain British subjects based on the same lower evidential test. The use of secret evidence would also be acceptable, “so as to protect British intelligence sources.”

As Gareth Pierce noted, this opens the way for the use of evidence obtained under duress or even torture. “While our government publicly sheds crocodile tears for the British detainees in Guantanamo Bay, it has emerged only recently that British intelligence agents have been there, and in Afghanistan’s Bagram airbase, interrogating those detainees. This country has been wholly complicit in obtaining the product of sustained interrogation in the absence of any safeguards of due process.”

BBC NEWS | Northern Ireland | UDA 'still involved in crime'

**Another DUH ! report for comic relief. Orde--wat a guy! Gotta love his quote.

UDA 'still involved in crime'

This weekend marks the first anniversary of a ceasefire (huh?) declared by the loyalist paramilitary Ulster Defence Association.

But in an exclusive interview with BBC Northern Ireland security editor Brian Rowan, Chief Constable Hugh Orde links the UDA to murder, beatings, drugs and other crimes during the past 12 months.

This time a year ago (how time flies) the "new" UDA announced its latest ceasefire - delivered as a 12-month period of "military inactivity".

The UDA announced its ceasefire one year ago

All of this was about trumpeting in a new era: this was the UDA after Johnny Adair, and things were going to be different.

Fifty paramilitary-style "punishment" attacks later, the new UDA looks something like the old UDA.

There have been murders too - one of them sectarian - as well as continuing involvement in drugs and other criminal activities.

More recently, there has been talk that the organisation wants a say in Northern Ireland's political future, and that it wants an input into the review of the Good Friday Agreement.

But the UDA has been told that pipe-bombs and politics don't mix, and the chief constable says "they need to decide which way they want to go".

Speaking in an exclusive interview for BBC News Online to mark the first anniversary of the UDA ceasefire, Hugh Orde linked the paramilitary group to those 50 or so "punishment" attacks.

"We would attribute those unequivocally to the UDA," said Mr Orde.

"We're not saying it's anyone else. Now, that's a substantial amount of violence within their own community.

"Nearly all those victims were under 30. So what that organisation is currently doing is crippling the future generation of their own people by these beatings.

"If they think it's OK to commit crime, then I think it's OK to arrest them"--Hugh Orde,Chief Constable

"So it hasn't gone away. They need to decide which way they want to go."

This time a year ago, the UDA was coming out of a bloody internal feud. One of its leaders, John Gregg, had been "shot dead in an ambush and Johnny Adair had been thrown back into jail.

There were all sorts of promises as the UDA turned over a new paramilitary leaf.

But "military inactivity" has not meant no activity and the chief constable suggested the UDA was behind the sectarian murder of a young Catholic man in Lisburn last November.

James McMahon was beaten to death - Hugh Orde says for "no identifiable reason" - and the chief constable told me: "The UDA is a major line of our inquiry in that killing."

Another UDA promise was to move away from its involvement in drugs crime, but Mr Orde says that has not happened.

"They are clearly involved in drugs," he said.

"Loyalist paramilitary groups specialise in the drugs market. That has not gone away. The drugs market is still there," he said.

Loyalists have complained about what they see as a policy of "politicising the Provos and criminalising the Prods", but Mr Orde is adamant that there is no such policy.

He said it was a "false claim" and that those who make it "need to grow up".

"If they think it's OK to commit crime, then I think it's OK to arrest them," he said.

So, Mr Orde's assessment of the UDA on ceasefire is that that group has been involved in murder, in vicious beatings, in drugs and in other criminal activities.

That said, on balance, the past year has been better than previous years in terms of the group's involvement in violence, but so much more is expected of a ceasefire.

Mr Orde hopes the UDA are as serious about now wanting to go down a political road.

But the organisation lacks credibility, and the paramilitary group will have to prove to others that it can change.

It is expected to speak soon on its future intentions.

Those watching and waiting for the group's latest utterances will be hoping for another ceasefire - one that is more disciplined and more credible.

BBC NEWS | Northern Ireland | Adair's son in guilty plea

Adair's son in guilty plea

Charges against Gina Adair were dropped

The son of convicted loyalist leader Johnny Adair has pleaded guilty to a series of drug charges.

Jonathan Adair, 19, from Horwich, Greater Manchester, admitted conspiring to supply heroin and crack cocaine when he appeared at Bolton Crown Court on Friday.

He spoke only to confirm his name and make his guilty plea.

His co-defendants, Ben Dowie, 22, and William Truesdale, 40, originally from Belfast but with addresses given as Chorley New Road, Horwich, also pleaded guilty to drugs charges.

Police have confirmed that charges have been dropped against the Ulster Freedom Fighters leader's wife, Gina Adair, from Chorley New Road, Horwich, and against Karen Truesdale, 32, of Thorpe Street, Halliwell, and a 13-year-old boy.

Jonathan Adair, Dowie and Truesdale were remained in custody and the case was adjourned until 12 March for pre-sentence reports.

The Adairs were among a number of families from Belfast who moved to Greater Manchester last year following violent infighting between loyalists.

BBC NEWS | Northern Ireland | Jobs blow as firm closes

Jobs blow as firm closes

Workforce is sent home after the announcement.

A Japanese owned car components factory in County Down is to close with the loss of 550 jobs.

The announcement is the second major blow to Northern Ireland's economy in 24 hours coming after the loss of 270 textile jobs in County Tyrone.

The workforce at the Dundonald firm was sent home after managers made the announcement to staff at 0900 GMT on Friday.

TK-ECC, usually known as European Components, makes seat belts and is set to close in four weeks' time.

Managers at the firm, on the outskirts of east Belfast, are blaming "overwhelming competition" from abroad.

Regional Secretary of the Amicus Union Peter Williamson said the news had come as a huge blow to the workforce.

"The company had been experiencing some difficulties, but we believed the management and ourselves had it turned around," he said.

"It is completely out of the blue for the both the workforce and the trade union."

The priority now is to help those who have been made redundant, and we will strive to ensure the best possible outcome for all affected:Ian Pearson, Enterprise Minister

It is understood that trade union representatives will be meeting factory managers on Monday.

In January 2003, the firm announced that 300 jobs were to go.

The plant is one of the biggest employers in the Dundonald area, and at one stage employed 800.

In December 1999, the firm's Tokyo-based parent company, Takata Corporation, said it was investing £12m in its Northern Ireland plant.

The investment included a £2m contribution from the then Industrial Development Board for Northern Ireland. It brought the total pumped into Northern Ireland by the firm to £40m.

'Employment options'

Enterprise Minister Ian Pearson said business agency Invest Northern Ireland had been working closely with TK-ECC but the firm said its closure was a commercial decision "taken in the light of changes in the global structure of manufacturing".

"The priority now is to help those who have been made redundant, and we will strive to ensure the best possible outcome for all affected," he said.

"Invest NI, working with the Department of Employment and Learning and other government agencies, will provide counselling for those who have lost their jobs and help them to take advantage of retraining opportunities or to examine self-employment options."

Strangford Democratic Unionist Party MP Iris Robinson said it was "difficult to accurately describe the depth of my disappointment on hearing this latest news".

The company had been experiencing some difficulties, but we believed the management and ourselves had it turned around
Peter Williamson

"When TK-ECC laid off 300 of their employees last year, the Strangford economy shuddered, so the loss of a further 550 jobs and the closure of the company will be devastating," she said.

East Belfast assembly member Sir Reg Empey said the latest job losses were a further devastating blow to manufacturing in the area.

"I am calling on the minister for enterprise, Ian Pearson, and the government in general to recognise the crisis in UK manufacturing which is receiving very little attention on the national political agenda," he said.

East Belfast SDLP representative Leo Van Es described the job losses as "a serious tragedy".

South Africa

Meanwhile, the loss of 270 textile jobs in County Tyrone has been described as a devastating blow to the local economy.

Management at Herdman's spinning mill told its workforce on Thursday that manufacturing would cease in Sion Mills.

The company has been experiencing difficulties in recent years, and had opened a plant in South Africa in an effort to cut costs.

It is understood that its manufacturing will now be carried out in South Africa, although the business will still be run from Northern Ireland.

The firm has been based in Sion Mills since 1835
The company has operated in Sion Mills since 1835.

It said in a statement that it had attempted to maintain its levels of employment in the area, but its considerable losses in recent years could no longer be sustained.

SDLP assemblyman Eugene McMenamin said he would be seeking a meeting with NIO minister Ian Pearson to address these and other job losses in the area.

"This building has been there for over 170 years - generations have worked there," he said.

Transport and General Workers' Union spokesman Jimmy Quinn said it would be very difficult for those who had lost their jobs to find new work and called for the government to help.

"It's a total hammer blow to the people of Sion Mills," he said.

Last April, about 160 people were made redundant at the County Tyrone textiles firm.

Northern Ireland's textiles industry has been hit by thousands of job losses in recent years, due to heavy competition from low wage economies, particularly in eastern Europe and the Far East.

Politics.ie - Opposition table Dail motion urging recognition of Irish as official EU language - The Irish Politics Website

Opposition table Dail motion urging recognition of Irish as official EU language
Friday, February 20

Labour, Fine Gael and the Green Party have agreed the text of a joint motion calling on the government to avail of the opportunity presented by Ireland's Presidency to inform the European Union of its wish to have the Irish language recognised as an official language of the European Union and its institutions. (The text of the motion is given below).

The motion will be debated during the Labour Party's Private Members Time on Tuesday and Wednesday next.

Commenting on the motion the Labour Party Leader, Pat Rabbitte said: "Ireland's Presidency of the EU provides an opportunity that may not be repeated to press the case for the recognition of Irish as an official language in the European Union. If the Dail passes this motion next week it would considerably strengthen the hand of the government in raising this issue with the EU."

"Tugann Uachtarántacht an Aontais Eorpaigh deis faoi leith don Rialtas, cás aitheantais an Ghaeilge a bhrú mar theanga oifigiul an Aontais. Má glacann an Dáil leis an Rún, an seachtain seo chugainn, neartófar lámh an Rialtais stádas an Ghaeilge a ardú san AE."

The Fine Gael Leader, Enda Kenny TD said:

"As Ireland may not have the Presidency of the EU again in its current format, the Government should avail of this unique opportunity to have Irish recognised as an official language.

"Cuireann is sé isteach go mór orm ar an gcéad lá do mhí Bealtaine le deich gcinn de tíortha nua ag teacht isteach san Aontas Eorpach, go mbeidh suas le 20 cinn de teangacha oifigiúil san Aontas agus ní bheidh an Gaeilge leo siúd."

The Leader of the Green Party, Trevor Sargent TD said: "Every country which signed the Treaty of Rome in 1957, and every country which signed a Treaty of Accession since then, except Ireland, has had their official national languages recognized as official languages of the EU. For example, Malta - which will join the EU in May - has had their national language accepted as an official EU language even though it has less national language speakers than Ireland has."

"The decision of the Irish Government, in 1972, to exclude Irish, significantly disadvantaged their own people. Though late, it is both possible and necessary to correct the mistake now, and to achieve recognition for Irish as an official working language".

"Tá gach tír a shínigh Conradh na Róimhe sa bhliain 1957, agus gach tír a shínigh Conradh Aontachais ó shin, ach amháin Éire, tar éis aitheantas a fháil dá dteangacha náisiúnta oifigiúla mar theangacha oifigiúla den Aontas Eorpach. Mar shampla, tá aitheantas faighte ag Malta ? a rachaidh isteach san Aontas, mí na Bealtaine ? dá dteanga náisiúnta mar theanga oifigiúil de chuid AE, cé gur lú líon cainteoirí na teanga náisiúnta ansin ná lion na gcainteoirí Gaeilge in Éirinn."

"Ba é an toradh a bhí ar chinneadh Rialtas na hÉireann sa bhliain 1972 an Ghaeilge a eisiamh ná a bpobal féin a fhágáil faoi mhíbhuntáiste mór. Cé go bhfuil sé déanach, is féidir agus is gá an dearmad sin a cheartú anois, agus aitheantas a bhaint amach don Ghaeilge mar theanga oifigiúil oibre."

Politics.ie - Sinn Fein demands an end to the drive toward privatising public services - The Irish Politics Website

**Found this site thanks to ira2

Sinn Féin Demands an End to the Drive Toward Privatising Public Services
(see actual article for more internal links)

Sinn Féin East EU Candidate and European Spokesperson on Privatisation, John Dwyer, reacted angrily to a EU meeting, which is taking place at Dublin Castle today (20.02.04). The 'Article 133 Committee' is meeting to discuss trade deals, and formulate policy for the controversial GATS negotiations at the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

Speaking today, Dwyer said:

"Today's negotiations could have a profound effect upon our most essential public services, including Health and Education services. This meeting is taking place behind closed doors to consider which services should be open to commercial competition. Sinn Féin is totally opposed to the buying and selling of our public services to the highest bidders.

"Along with all of the Sinn Féin TDs and my fellow EU Candidates, I have signed a letter to the Irish Government, calling for a greater transparency and accountability, and demanding that concerned parties have access to the documents being presented by the Irish Government to the meeting. This meeting encapsulates much of what is wrong with the EU - secrecy, unaccountability and an unrelenting drive toward privatising our most essential public services"

The Shamrockshire Eagle: Tuesday 17th February 2004

**Now this is the EAGLE I love:

And Still They


The Shamrockshire Eagle: Monday 2nd February 2004

**I thought I was depressed before, but then I stumbled over to the EAGLE to pick up a current article for you which I almost had posted when my auld dinosaur here crashed, and I decided to read a previous week's post called "My Position," which you may pick up on the link above. That piece caused my spirits to plummet further. I can only hope that the SHAMROCKSHIRE EAGLE just needs to drop back and re-group, as my da always used to say. With all due consideration for one who first welcomed me to blogging and for whom I have great respect, I do not believe it is correct to say,"The Irish have simply given up the fight, have abandoned the cause of Irish nationhood." The Irish I know are passionate about their country. There are thousands of us doing whatever part we happen to find to do to further that concept, each in his or her own way. It is only when you give it up in your head and your heart that it is truly gone, and I do not see that happening. Societies, which are no more than people with families with needs like we all have, cannot go through almost a half a century of war and not want something different for themselves. Because we are all not still wiring explosives and sniping at soldiers (and some of us still are), does not mean we have given up. I am very proud that the EAGLE included me as one still dedicated to the old Ireland the Fenians cherished. That is a high compliment. I think the writer of the SHAMROCKSHIRE EAGLE shares this dedication as well, even if he is tired of beating his head against the wall, as he says. He has far too much talent, however, to NOT continue to play his part. That's what I think anyway.


Random Ramblings from a Republican

Please take some time to ramble over to the above site, RANDOM RAMBLINGS FROM A REPUBLICAN, and get a dose of history, which you can never have too much of. This week there's some good stuff on The Black and Tans and also one of my heroes, Constance Markievicz. I really like the poem written by Con's sister.
(mural photo by CRAZYFENIAN)


We Say

DUP new boy Jeffrey Donaldson dispatched a factotum to the King’s Hall public meeting on the future of Long Kesh with an uncompromising message: “not a foot will be used for a republican museum”.

One wit pointed out that for the DUP that’s progress — their catchcry used to be ‘not an inch’.

Whatever their motto, the DUP have their face set against any development in the former prison camp which helps us reflect on the past and build together for the future. That’s hardly a surprise - they are, after all, against the peace process so if a vibrant, educational museum at Long Kesh helps bring people together, they’re going to girn and gulder.

Like the book-burners of old, the DUP think they can obliterate the past by bulldozing the H-Blocks. Not a chance, they have to be told that by any objective historic or academic measure, Long Kesh is one of the most important sites in Ireland and is a vital part of our heritage.

A dynamic, bustling museum which sheds light on our past and serves as a beacon to the future is a prerequisite of any development plan for the Kesh.

Otherwise nationalists, who will be expected to foot half the bill for the development (and indeed the GAA which will be expected to endorse the proposed multi-use stadium), won’t want anything to do with a project which was originally billed as turning a site of conflict into a symbol of peace and regeneration but which is going to be a nationalist-free zone.

BBC NEWS | Northern Ireland | Omagh visit for Ahern

Omagh visit for Ahern

Irish Prime Minister Bertie Ahern is to visit the scene of the Omagh bombing during a one-day visit to Northern Ireland.

Mr Ahern will travel by helicopter between engagements throughout the province on Thursday. No major protests are anticipated during Bertie Ahern's visit

Although the taoiseach has made frequent trips to Northern Ireland for political discussions, this type of visit is a rarer occurrence.

Mr Ahern will first meet SDLP leader Mark Durkan in Derry before travelling to Coleraine to give a keynote speech on the political process.

He will then head to Omagh for his first visit since he attended a prayer service in the County Tyrone town shortly after the August 1998 Real IRA bombing.

Mr Ahern will meet local politicians and relatives of people killed and injured in the bomb, which was the single worst atrocity in 30 years of violence in Northern Ireland.

Mr Ahern will visit the scene of the Omagh bombing which killed 29 people

Some relatives, including Michael Gallagher whose 21-year-old son Aidan died in the bomb, are staying away in protest at what they see as the "token" nature of the visit.

Michael Gallagher, spokesman for the relatives, said: "Our group will not be represented when Mr Ahern visits Omagh.

"We have been asking for a meeting with him for five years, but when I asked how long we would be able to meet with him, I was told the most we could hope for was five to 10 minutes."

He added: "We want a proper sit-down meeting, not a photo opportunity for the Taoiseach."

At about the same time as Mr Ahern's visit to Omagh, they will be in Dublin to meet Enda Kenny, the leader of the main Irish opposition party, Fine Gael.

Mr Ahern will round off his trip in Belfast where he will meet the city's Lord Mayor, Martin Morgan, as well as councillors and community workers.

BBC Northern Ireland political editor Mark Devenport said such a trip might have been considered a "security nightmare" in the past.

But following recent contacts between Mr Ahern and loyalists as well as talks with the DUP, Irish Government officials say no major protests are expected.


Telegraph | News | The lawless society where terrorists are driving teenage boys to kill themselves

The lawless society where terrorists are driving teenage boys to kill themselves

By Thomas Harding, Ireland Correspondent
(Filed: 18/02/2004)

The latest young man to die in a series of apparent suicides linked to paramilitary intimidation and violence in a small area of Belfast was buried yesterday.

Two years ago Barney Cairns made the mistake of getting into an argument and "squaring up" to a member of the Irish National Liberation Army.

The revenge of the small republican group, which broke away from the IRA in the mid-1970s, was swift. Within hours the teenager, then 16, was abducted and shot in the legs. But it was not the physical scars that led to his death. He became mentally unstable as a result of the assault.

It appears he "snapped" after the funeral of his friend Anthony O'Neill, who also committed suicide last week. Like Mr Cairns, Mr O'Neill is said to have become depressed after suffering an INLA "punishment attack".

A few hours after Mr O'Neill was buried Mr Cairns climbed scaffolding surrounding a church spire and hanged himself. It was the 11th such death in north Belfast, where a quarter of all deaths in the Troubles occurred, since the New Year. The majority of apparent suicides have been by young men intimidated by the INLA in the Roman Catholic Ardoyne area.

With annual suicide figures in Northern Ireland averaging about 150, the Ardoyne, with a population of about 10,000, now has a rate that threatens to outstrip the entire province.

Fr Aidan Troy, the Catholic priest who earned international coverage for his mediation during the Holy Cross primary school dispute, has challenged the INLA to issue a statement to end all punishment attacks. "We are seeking a declaration from INLA that no young person is under threat," he told The Daily Telegraph.

"Until we get that, I'm afraid we will have further deaths. The INLA have no mandate from society. That pressure can be lifted from these young men today."

The Holy Cross dispute, in which loyalists tried to stop Catholic primary school pupils walking through their area, has ended, but there are still children on medication as a result.

Since then the Provisional IRA, under political pressure from Sinn Fein, has toned down its military activities and lost ground to the INLA in the Ardoyne.

The area, which has a myriad of streets, is near impossible to police. With Sinn Fein refusing to sign up to police reforms the INLA has stepped into the power vacuum.

The INLA, the group responsible for 127 murders in the Troubles, appears more interested in drug dealing than republican ideals, security sources say. For the last two years its leader, who allegedly murdered an RUC officer, has claimed to act for the community.

Last year the group's political wing, the Irish Republican Socialist Party, said: "Young individuals in Ardoyne were punished for a range of anti-social actions that warranted and deserved a response."

The group claimed it did not torture teenagers, but the evidence is to the contrary. A troublesome 14-year-old boy was tarred and feathered last summer and last month had his shin shattered in an INLA shooting.

Kieran, 19, was another victim. Two years ago he was abducted, tied to a chair, beaten and interrogated for two hours about a stolen car.

"I felt worthless, less than nothing," he said. "If they had done it again I would have thought about suicide." He also spoke of a friend who was put in a bath and threatened with electrocution with a hairdryer.

The teenagers have few means of support to turn to although a 24-hour helpline was set up on Monday. The paramilitary beatings coupled with adolescent anxiety, drink and cannabis induced paranoia are thought to be the main cause of the deaths. "It's a lawless society policed by the lawless," said one resident.

Fr Troy, who climbed the scaffolding to administer the Last Rites to Barney Cairns, said he was prepared to talk to the INLA at any time to "help to get them out of the awful situation they have got themselves into".

"If they were to make a statement saying to any young person in north Belfast under threat from us of any sort, that we abandon interrogation, sentencing, punishment attacks and harassment, that would instantly relieve the pressure."

Dr Columba McLaughlin, a mental health lecturer at the University of Ulster who is an expert on suicide rates in Northern Ireland, called for an urgent investigation into the deaths.

"This outbreak is certainly shocking news to this community," he said. "At almost two a week you are going to get the whole annual average for Northern Ireland in this one small area. It's phenomenal at the moment.

"If you combine the paramilitary pressures with all the other pressure young males face you have the potential for an explosion in suicides."

There were 132 male and 30 female suicides in Northern Ireland in 2002, with Belfast registering 28 of the total. That figure is set to change dramatically with the current spate of deaths.

Scores of teenagers attended Barney Cairns's funeral in Belfast yesterday. Many were afraid to talk to reporters for fear of reprisal. A 17-year-old boy said: "These scumbags torture the neighbourhood. They tie us up and take boys away. It's just for nothing, smoking a bit of blow [cannabis]. They say it's for disorderly behaviour, but they are full of s—. They want to sell drugs."

Another boy at the funeral, aged 15, said: "It's only now that people are starting to realise there is a problem. We just stand on street corners with nothing to do. The INLA has a massive influence in the area, telling us what to do."

Inside the packed church Fr Brendan McGee spoke of the "arrogant and vindictive paramilitary groups" who he believed had left Mr Cairns "very insecure".

The coffin was carried by Mr Cairns's brothers and sisters from St Patrick's church and laid to rest in the City cemetery. A note on a wreath from his parents read: "These flowers will fade but our love for you will fill our hearts forever and ever, Mommy and Daddy."

Guardian Unlimited Politics | Special Reports | Maze keeps Ulster divided

Maze keeps Ulster divided

Plans for the future of a prison which housed notorious paramilitaries were meant to symbolise peace but have generated a furious row

Angelique Chrisafis, Ireland correspondent
Wednesday February 18, 2004
The Guardian

Five snooker balls lay on an abandoned table as pools of mould dripped from the walls of the Maze prison's old hospital wing. A row of cobwebbed air-fresheners did little to disturb the ghosts of republican hunger strikers who died here. Inside an H-block wing, a rusty weight-lifting machine and "Chelsea FC" scrawled on a bookshelf were the only signs of the loyalist paramilitaries who once walked these now freezing corridors.

The bleak 145-hectare (360-acres) site of the Maze prison, which once housed some of Northern Ireland's most notorious paramilitaries, is about to be transformed after lying empty for four years. But the multi-million pound project which was supposed to symbolise the peace process is fast becoming a symbol of the sectarian divide, as a row escalates over what should be built on the site.

At a heated open meeting in Belfast on Monday night, republicans and unionists disagreed over proposals for a museum and one member of the cross-party consultation panel warned that the site could become a "political football".

Developers and the public have until next week to submit their ideas for the Maze. Currently top of the list is a national sports stadium to rival Cardiff's Millennium Stadium and bolster the Northern Ireland football team, which has not scored a goal for two years. Some believe the site could host events in the 2012 Olympics if London wins its bid.

Other suggestions include a motor-racing track, a science park, an international theme park, a housing estate and shopping centre, a wind-farm and a "much needed" Ikea store for Ireland.

But proposals for a museum along the lines of Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was incarcerated in South Africa, have brought allegations that it would be hijacked as a "republican shrine" and provoke resentment in the local predominantly protestant community of Lisburn.

The Sinn Féin councillor and former Maze prisoner, Paul Butler, said the fears were unfounded and a museum would commemorate everyone linked to the Maze, including murdered prison officers. "Whether you like it or not, this is part of the history of this country - 25,000 people were imprisoned here, 15,000 prison officers have worked here. The Red Cross has said this prison had stronger community links than any other prison in the world. You can't deny the past."

But Jeffrey Donaldson, the local Democratic Unionist MP, said his constituency would not condone it: "Not one foot of the site should be used for a museum. The victims of these terrorists will not visit this site. It would be an absolute abomination to them."

Julian Roberston of the Conservative party, said: "I don't think it's realistic to assume [a museum] will be inclusive. Emotions are still too raw."

A republican ex-prisoners group today launches its proposals for a "limited museum" and "remembrance area". The former loyalist prisoner and Progressive Unionist leader, David Ervine, has suggested the prison should be levelled.

While heritage commission ers carry out their assessment, there has been anger that the prison service has been auctioning off chunks of Maze history, including snooker tables for £80. A former governor told the Guardian £10,500 had been made at auction, but mostly from kitchen equipment and staff lockers - "nothing of historical importance".

Even the sports stadium idea caused controversy this week with Sinn Féin's Máirtin Ó Muilleoir warning that a stadium could not be built without the backing of all three main sports - rugby, soccer and Gaelic football. He felt the Gaelic Athletic Association was unlikely to sign up to the site as a permanent home.

Meanwhile, families who were forced to give up their land to the site in 1941 when it was built as a second world war airbase, said they had suffered an "injustice" at being told the government was not legally obliged to hand the land back to them.

The panel chairman, David Campbell, said: "Nothing has yet been ruled in or ruled out". The recommendations will be published this summer.

online.ie: news

Arms seizure linked to INLA gang

A home-made shotgun and ammunition seized by police may be linked to republican paramilitaries who have been blamed for a rise in teenage suicides in Belfast.

The weapon, component parts for a blast bomb and 300 bullets and cartridges were discovered hidden in the roof space of commercial premises in Ardoyne just hours after the funeral of one of the suicide victims.

Police had been acting on a tip-off and confirmed they believed the hideout could be linked to the INLA.

The INLA has been accused of pressuring teenagers from Ardoyne who were among 13 suicides in north Belfast this year.

Sergeant Alan Jones said he could not comment on the motive for the information being passed to police.

But he added: "Every bullet saved is a life saved and a kneecap saved from being shattered. This is very important and anything which takes the pressure off these kids is wonderful."


Streets of shame that lead to despair
(Filed: 18/02/2004)

Ted Oliver in Belfast reports on how life in the city's ghettos is ruled by men in balaclavas

Six years on, the Good Friday Agreement has the look of an initiative coming apart at the seams. Westminster rule seems likely to remain in place for the foreseeable future. Men in balaclavas continue to terrorise the ghettos, ignoring the rule of law and acting as judges, juries and, all too often, executioners.

Was it not this, in large part, that the agreement was meant to eliminate? At Easter 1998 many of those who had lived through 30 years of hatred, violence and disruption gave a substantial mandate to the peace moves in an all-Ireland referendum.

Events of the past six weeks in the Ardoyne area of north Belfast - probably the most deprived and beleaguered part of western Europe - bear witness to how far away a truly peaceful society remains.

Yesterday the funeral took place of yet another young man who has felt driven to take his own life. Life for such individuals - Roman Catholics, living in a confined space, surrounded by some of the city's toughest loyalist areas - was never going to be easy.

Jobs are scarce. There are few places to meet to socialise or talk about their worries. Drug and alcohol abuse is widespread. Enter into the equation a brutal regime of punishment beatings and threats carried out by a republican paramilitary group and you have a recipe for the human tragedy that is now manifesting itself in a spate of suicides.

The gangsters from the Irish National Liberation Army, responsible for murdering Airey Neave at Westminster in 1979 and 17 people - 11 of them soldiers - in the Droppin Well disco bombing at Ballykelly, Co Londonderry, in 1982, are still around, torturing and threatening the youth of Ardoyne and driving them to suicide, killing them as surely as if they had shot them in the head.

The INLA and all the other republican and loyalist terrorist groups should long ago have been absorbed, according to the Good Friday optimism, into the political process. Instead they openly walk the streets of Ardoyne, regularly dishing out savage beatings to teenagers who have committed minor crimes or simply challenged their authority. Their victims are often trussed and stuffed, bruised and bleeding, down manhole covers into the drains.

It is difficult to imagine life in Ardoyne unless you live there. The police are not welcome. The appearance of soldiers would spark a riot. And it is one of the many ironies of Northern Ireland that the one group which could stop the INLA thugs can only stand back and watch.

The area is home for dozens of Provisional IRA men with the firepower to stop their rivals. But they are under orders not to interfere, since any violent response would be used by unionists as further reason for excluding Sinn Fein from any participation in the government of the province.

Is this crazy situation what the Good Friday Agreement was supposed to bring the people of Ulster? Look past Ardoyne to the loyalist housing estates in Co Down, Armagh, Belfast and Londonderry where like-minded thugs from the UDA, UVF and LVF carry out nightly beatings to keep control of the people.

They are earning millions of pounds a year from extortion, drugs and prostitution. They, too, should have long gone but show little signs of diminishing in power. As young men hang or poison themselves at the rate of two per week in Ardoyne and the gangsters from both traditions line their pockets, the unionists continue to bicker, the "middle of the road" has all but vanished and the IRA refuses to disarm or disband.

Sinn Fein will not say the war is over, and the Government seems to have run out of answers or even questions. Yes, towns and cities are not being blown apart. Soldiers and police are not being murdered. For the majority, life has an air of normality. For many, "peace" has even brought increased prosperity.

But one wonders how long this situation - with much of the misery inflicted by paramilitaries of all persuasions going unreported either by the media or to the police - can continue before the despair felt by those suicidal young men spreads across Northern Ireland.

Fermanagh Herald
(thanks to ira2)

'Aggressive' RIR searches in Roslea

By Aileen Murphy

People in Roslea are up in arms about the level of Royal Irish Regiment activity in the area and, as a result, a number of local men have come forward to relay first-hand their experiences of being stopped and searched over the last week
James Murray explained that last week he was stopped twice in the space of nine hours. Last Thursday night at 11.15, and the following Friday morning at 7.55am.

'On Friday I was on my way to work, going out the Monaghan Road when an eight man RIR patrol blocked the road. They asked for my licence and when I said I didn't have it with me they pulled me over to the side of the road.
'They put rows of spikes, like a 'stinger' device between the front and back wheels of the car so that I couldn't move it. When I asked them why they did this, they said it was routine, but I've never seen it done before,' Mr Murray continued.

'They did not have a PSNI officer with them, I phoned both the Police Station and my local Councillor to look for backup. When I was on the phone to (Councillor) Brian McCaffrey, one of the RIR patrol told me that he would 'drive me through the hedge'.

Mr Murray claimed that another of the soldiers, who he believed to be the patrol leader, called him a w*****. 'They were really aggressive and bad-mannered.
'At this stage I tried to leave the vehicle and walk back into Roslea to the PSNI station, I got about 60 yards up the road before two of the soldiers came up and took me by each shoulder marched me back and pushed me up against the van.
"Some RUC officers arrived shortly after this, but there was no sense of urgency about them arriving and when they did they just backed the army up anyway,' said Mr Murray.

'I don't know why they were so aggressive with me, there was nothing in the back of my van except a few building tools, the van wasn't locked and you could see in clearly through the windows.

'I think it's very sad that this situation has developed in Roslea, it's a quiet area, but the RIR have never really been accepted here, they are very aggressive towards the Nationalist community and this has got worse over the last 12 months. Something needs to done about this situation or sooner or later somebody's going to come a cropper.'

Another Roslea local, Oliver McCaffrey said that he was stopped by an RIR patrol that same night shortly after 10pm. 'They pulled me over and searched my boot and opened the bonnet. They were very aggressive and bad-mannered, just standing there sniggering the whole time.

'They asked me for my name and address, which I gave to them, but they asked me for my road number, I explained that I only use my townland and they started laughing again saying: 'Don't you even know your own house number?'. They held me up for about 10 minutes, all for nothing' Mr McCaffrey continued.

'The number of patrols has risen greatly in the last few weeks, and local people are really starting to get annoyed with the number of times they are being pulled over,' he added.

Mr McCaffrey explained that he had already made a complaint to the RIR civilian representative, and was waiting for a response.

On Friday last, a protest took place outside the joint Army and Police base in Roslea. The protest, organised by Farmers and Residents Against Military Bases (FARM) was held because of the previous 48-hour's harassment of the local community by members of the Royal Irish Regiment, explained Sinn Fein MLA Thomas O'Reilly.

He said he attended the protest after receiving many complaints from local people.

'The protesters held their protest outside the main gate of the barracks. Most of them carried banners calling for the removal of this regiment from the area and an end to the harassment of the local population.

'Many of them blew whistles and used hooters to register their protest at the behaviour of the security forces that morning and the previous night around the village' added Mr O'Reilly.

The protest which was also attended by the two other local Councillors, Brian Mc Caffrey and Ruth Lynch, lasted for approximately one hour and was attended by about 80 people.

Mr O'Reilly continued: "During the protest the security forces used a strong searchlight and at one stage prepared a fire hose in case some of the protesters were to come over the wall of the base.

"The anger of the protesters was very evident throughout the protest and sent a clear message that this particular regiment was not acceptable in the area.'
Commenting on the increase in levels of troops, a spokesperson for the RIR said: 'Patrol levels fluctuate in response to the threat to the public of on-going terrorist activity. The threat and capability of dissident republican terrorists to launch attacks was illustrated by the planting of a 130lb car bomb in the town (Roslea) in October 2003, and during the same week the recovery of an automatic weapon".

He suggested that 'since the Good Friday Agreement patrolling levels in Fermanagh have fallen continuously.'

In response to the allegations of heavy-handedness and aggression on the part of the soldiers, the spokesperson stressed: 'The British Army expects the highest standards of behaviour from soldiers who often find themselves in hazardous and hostile environments and situations.'

'If any member of the public feels they have a legitimate complaint to make against a member of the armed forces, there is a well-established complaints' procedure involving civilian representatives appointed by the Northern Ireland Office who can deal with the situation.'

BBC NEWS | Northern Ireland | Court rejects Adams case

Court rejects Adams case

An independent unionist councillor has lost a High Court action over Gerry Adams' refusal to take his seat at Westminster.
The constituency of the Sinn Fein president takes in part of the staunchly loyalist Shankill Road.

Shankill councillor Frank McCoubrey applied for a declaration that his human rights had been breached by Mr Adam's decision to stay away from parliament.

Mr Adams, and the party's other three MPs, refuse to take an oath of allegiance to the Queen required to sit in the Commons

On Wednesday, Mr Justice Girvan refused leave to apply for a judicial review of Mr Adams' decision but pointed to shortcomings in the law.

The judge said some might seek to challenge the requirement to take an oath.

He said others might seek to challenge the law so that an MP who declined to take his seat could be obliged to vacate it, if he did not take the oath within a prescribed period.

However, the judge said the proceedings brought by Mr McCoubrey were not an appropriate legal framework to deal with what he described as "these contentious political issues".

'Abusing human rights'

Outside the court, Mr McCoubrey said he was not surprised by the decision.

He said the case may now be taken to the European Court of Human Rights.

"I believe what happened today is a political decision," he said.

"The Speaker of the House of Commons refused to act and that is why I had to seek a judicial review. We have not been granted one but I am not letting it rest there.

"My ultimate goal was to get this case to Europe to prove to the world that the West Belfast MP is abusing the human rights of thousands of his constituents."

Sinn Fein councillor Paul Maskey said it was evident from the outset that the case that it had "no basis in law or fact".

He said the outcome of the legal bid was "inevitable given the shallow nature of the case".

"Gerry Adams will continue to represent all of the people of West Belfast," he added.

"The constituency service which his office provides in second to none, a fact which can be confirmed by the people in unionist areas of West Belfast who have had occasion to use it over the years."


Courtesy of iauc@iauc.org

Dear friend:

Recent reports suggest that the British government will soon release
the Cory report into the murder of Belfast attorney Patrick Finucane.
It is expected to confirm that British security forces colluded in the

The British government will release it at a time of its choosing in
order to minimize its impact.

The importance of this report cannot be underestimated. If it
confirms what we have always suspected; it will explode the much-propagated
myth that Britain was merely acting as the bulwark between two irrational,
warring factions in Ireland.

It is opportunities like this that we must make full use of.
Remember the IRA spy-ring in Stormont? Special Branch brought down the
government and republicans were blamed. That story made CNN, ABC, NBC and CBS for
days, thanks to the RUC Special Branch tipping off the media. The fact
that the spy charges against men were dropped last week didn't register here

The Special Branch, who we know were instrumental in Finucane's
murder, are still in existance. This is our chance to help rid policing in
Northern Ireland of the Special Branch.

We need to have an action plan in place when the Cory report is
published. A proposal might be to have an email campaign ready to go upon
publication of the report. We could target the Drudge Report


Drudge has a text-box on his main page asking for worthy news tips
from around the world. If Drudge receives sufficient tips, he may place
a link to the story on his page. This would ensure world-wide coverage,
exposing Britain's true role in the Irish conflict. We could also target
network TV and the main papers, NY Times, Washington Post, LA Times etc.

My request to you is that you agree to contact all activists on your
contact list as soon as the report is published. I will forward you an e-
mail when the report is published with all the relevant contact info, links,
email etc, for you to send to your list.

The most important part is that we have the e-mail tree set up and
ready to go at the critical moment.

If you are willing to join with us in setting up this e-mail tree,
please respond to this e-mail. I will add you to the list.

If you know of others who would also act as a building block in this
e-mail campaign, please forward this email to them.

Again, this is a clear-cut opportunity which we must take advantage
of. Please respond to let me know that you will help. All you have to
do now is reply to this message to confirm your participation. All it will
require of you is to forward to your activists list an email I will send to
you when the report is published.


Deanna Turner


Saoirse Online Newsroom

MBE award condemned

Seán McGoldrick, Assistant PRO Republican Sinn Féin
February 17, 2004

The presentation of an Honorary MBE to Julitta Clancy of the Meath Peace Group by the British royal, Princess Anne, on behalf of her sister the Queen was criticized by Republican Sinn Féin today. Seán McGoldrick, RSF assistant PRO said acceptance of such an award by a person claiming to promote 'peace and reconciliation' was extremely regrettable.

Seán McGoldrick said the award from a sectarian hereditary monarch was stained by centuries of colonialism. Taking part in such a ceremony did nothing to promote peace or prove a persons commitment to it.

"Republican Sinn Féin still maintains that British royals are not welcome in Ireland while Britain holds Six Counties," he said.

The MBE (Member of the British Empire) has been rejected by people such as leading black poet Benjamin Zephaniah who turned it down because he felt it stood for colonial brutality, slavery and racism.

The writer and political analyst Yasmin Alibhai-Brown returned her award last December because of its echoes of Empire, the Blair government's commitment to a "new, even more loathsome American empire" and the UK's "brutalising" treatment of asylum-seekers. Among those to receive an MBE in the 2004 New Year's Honours List was Pakistani Mo Kahn who received the award in recognition of his achievements in recruiting youth for the Royal Air Force.



Feb 14 2004
By Claire Donnelly

JO Berry fumbles hurriedly with the buttons of her mobile before pushing it back in her bag.

"Sorry about that," she says smiling. "It was just Pat letting me know that he's on his way."

"Pat" is Patrick Magee, the man who killed her father.

The former IRA man planted and set the device that ripped through Brighton's Grand Hotel in 1984, killing Tory MP Sir Anthony Berry and four others and injuring 34 more.

Patrick, 52, was jailed in 1986 for life for his part in the atrocity, but released in 1999 under the Good Friday Agreement. When Jo, 47, heard he was going to be freed she made a decision that would change both their lives - to meet him and try to understand him.

That first historic contact made headlines across the world but after the media frenzy subsided they forged an unusual partnership.

Now, as the 20th anniversary of the bombing approaches, she and Patrick have developed an unlikely and genuine friendship, a friendship they hope will help promote peace through Jo's organisation Building Bridges For Peace. They are writing a book together to record their remarkable journey.

Jo and Pat have met more than 20 times since that first, emotionally-charged day. Today they regularly phone, text and email each other and are keen to learn more about each other's views.

As Jo, who lives with her three daughters in North Wales, explains: "Pat is a friend, a genuine friend - although obviously not a normal friend. There probably isn't a word to describe our relationship.

"We've met so many times now and we talk on the phone and text. We usually meet for a reason, for work or something but we do have coffee and that kind of thing.

"I took him to a macrobiotic restaurant in Dublin once - he had a cup of tea then went for a hamburger round the corner. So we do do normal things.

But in some ways it can't be normal because there is still that tension."

Patrick, who is no longer a member of the IRA and now opposes the use of violence in Northern Ireland, tries to explain their relationship.

"Sometimes we're just talking about what we've been doing recently and you nearly forget what our situation is.

"But you have to catch yourself. In some ways, we've got the worst possible basis for any type of friendship, it almost defies what friendship is.

"Normally if a friend hurts you or your family, that would be the end. But that was our starting point.

"I don't know if I could do what Jo has done if someone hurt one of my relatives. I'd like to think I had it in me to try and understand at least.

"But I didn't go to Jo asking for or expecting forgiveness but we have managed to find some common ground."

Their relationship was recently highlighted in The F-Word: Images of Forgiveness, an exhibition on London's South Bank about reconciliation. Now they hope their friendship will set a precedent for future generations.

As Pat explains: "We're still making our own way around this idea of forgiveness and what it means to us.

"Before our first meeting I didn't foresee a situation in which Jo and I would even want to meet again, never mind share a platform."

It was Jo's desire to understand more about the conflict that brought them together in November 2001.

After feeling anger towards Patrick - "I had this rage in me saying, 'How dare he kill my family?'" - Jo arranged to talk to him face-to-face at the house of a mutual friend in Dublin.

"I wanted him to know what my father was like, to see the consequences of violence.

"He was expecting a lot of anger from me - he would have found that easier to deal with - but I felt relatively calm.

"We just started talking and I realised his need to meet me was the same as my need to meet him.

"He had got to a point in his life where he felt that there was a cost to his humanity because of what he'd done."

Patrick, himself a father of three who now lives in Belfast, says: "You have this stereotypical image when you hear 'Tory'. You expect someone to be quite la-di-da, but Jo wasn't like that at all."

In the course of their first three-hour meeting, Patrick listened as Jo told him all about the man he'd killed.

But it was a question from her seven-year-old daughter, he found hardest to answer. "My daughter was seven and she'd wanted me to ask him why he killed her grandaddy," says Jo.

"At that moment he was very shaken.

"He had talked about my father being a 'legitimate target' - it's a way of separating the way your head and heart feel, a non-feeling way of explaining what you're doing. I don't believe you could plant a bomb if you knew the legacy of pain that was going to be left and the families that were going to be devastated."

Patrick explains: "She told me a lot about her father, I think I tried to build up a picture of him. It was difficult, but I was just glad we were meeting. But when Jo spoke about her daughter and what she said about me and her grandfather, that was very tough to hear."

His voice dropping to a whisper, he adds: "That was very tough. You know...." His voice picks up.

"I set out to hurt the British State and I can live with that.

"But when you come face to face with the fact that this was a person and all the wider ripples - the relatives and the unborn relatives - it's difficult." Jo and Patrick's developing friendship isn't always an easy one, but they both say it is their honesty to each other that makes it difficult and worthwhile.

As Jo says: "I still get angry with him, but I think that's fine.

"I'm not a saint and sometimes I don't want this to be a part of my life - sometimes I'll leave it for weeks and weeks. And I still don't say I've forgiven him. People think I met Pat, forgave him and that's the issue resolved.

"But nothing is ever as simple as that. It's about understanding. He has enriched my life experience and I've learnt so much from him. I've learnt how to challenge without blaming.

"I am not naive and I don't expect huge changes very quickly but I'll be very happy if one person says to me, 'I heard your story and it helped me'."

Pat agrees. "From the word go, there was no act with Jo and she knows I'm always going to be very open.

"One thing that is contentious between us is my role in the IRA and I do still defend my actions at Brighton. We have debated the issue of violence and she would never condone it.

"I have to respect that as her friend, but I don't share that view. But I don't think there's any justification for violence in the present Northern Ireland. The peace process means there is another way."

Jo, who says she will mark the anniversary of her father's death on October 12 privately, adds: "I don't think Pat is evil.

"I think his actions, what he did, were evil, but not the person. You have to separate them to avoid blame and find a new way thinking that will break that cycle of violence.

"That's what we want."

-JO'S website is at: www.buildingbridgesforpeace.org.

-ANYONE interested in The Forgiveness Project can contact them at: info@the forgivenessproject.com.

Maude Gonne


**I found this paper on the net and would credit it by name, but there is none. References are at the end.

Maud Gonne - Irish patriot, actress, and feminist
Ireland’s Joan of Arc
Born: Aldershot, England on Dec. 20, 1865
Died: Clonskeagh, Dublin on April 27, 1953
Wrote an autobiography: A Servant of the Queen

From the moment he met her, WB Yeats' life was profoundly affected by her famed beauty and unanswered devotion to Irish nationalism. Born during an age when women were expected to be nothing more than handsome window-dressing for their husbands, when women were expected to leave the rough and tumble world of politics to men, Maud Gonne rose above that prejudice to leave her mark on Ireland’s history.

Maude Gonne’s father was a wealthy British army colonel of Irish descent and her mother was English. Her mother died in 1871 and Maud was educated in France by a governess before moving to Dublin in 1882, when her father was posted there. Maud's father died in 1886 leaving her financially independent. Moving back to France for health reasons after a tubercular hemorrhage, Gonne met and fell in love with French journalist Lucien Millevoye, editor of "La Patrie." The pair agreed to work for both Irish and French nationalist causes. She had 2 children with him before their affair ended 2 years later. He suggested that even though she was English she would become Ireland’s Joan of Arc.

Maud had been introduced to Feminism by John O'Leary, a Fenian and veteran of the 1848 Young Irelander uprising. Irish politician Tim Harrington of the National League recognized that this beautiful, intelligent young woman could be an asset to the nationalist movement. He sent her to Donegal, where mass evictions were taking place. Gonne was successful in organizing the locals in protest against these actions. The fact that she soon had to leave for France to avoid arrest is probably a good measure her success there.

In 1889, John O'Leary would introduce Maud to a man whose infatuation with her would last most of his life: poet William Butler Yeats. Yeats would propose to Gonne in 1891, and be refused; largely through Maud's influence, Yeats would become involved with Irish nationalism, later joining the Irish Republican Brotherhood. In a quotation to which many a man through history might nod in agreement, Yeats would later refer to his meeting with Gonne, saying, "all the trouble of my life began" then.

With W. B. Yeats, she founded an Association Irlandaise in Paris, but rejected his marriage proposals. She was his unrequited love for all of his life and he proposed to her 3 times. Each time she turned him down by saying, “No Willie the world would not thank me for marrying you”. While he was in love with Maude Gonne he shared her Nationalistic aims and she exerted a strong influence on his early poetry. She joined the secret Irish Republican Brotherhood, and attracted police attention in Ireland by her protests against eviction and against celebration of Queen Victoria's diamond jubilee.

In 1900, she founded the Daughters of Ireland, a women's republican movement, and opposed Boer War recruitment. In 1902, she played Yeats' Cathleen ni Houlihan, symbolizing Ireland's struggle when she shed the appearance of an old crone to become 'a young girl with the walk of a queen'. In 1903, she married in Paris to Major John MacBride, who had formed an Irish brigade to fight on the Boers' side; their marriage failed, and he returned to Ireland, where he was executed after the 1916 rising. She spent most of her time in France. Returning to Dublin, she was jailed by the British for her part in the anti-conscription movement in 1918 and spent 6 months in Holloway prison in London. She organized relief during the War of Independence, and assisted republican prisoners and their dependants during the Civil War. Imprisoned in 1923, she was released after going on hunger strike. In 1938, she published an account of her early life, A Servant of the Queen. From 1922, she lived at Roebuck House, Clonskeagh, Dublin, where she died on April 27, 1953.

Maud and Major John MacBride’s marriage was a short and unhappy one but the son they produced may have soothed any regrets Gonne had about it. As a young man, Seán fought on the Republican side in the Civil War and later carried on his mother's crusade for the fair treatment of political prisoners, not just in Ireland, but all over the world. Seán was one of the founders of Amnesty International. In 1974, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

Maude Gonne and WB Yeats:

Although Yeats mentions Maud Gonne by name only once in his poetry, her presence dominates much of his verse. Yeats continuously brought her into his poetry as his central symbol of beauty, whether he called her Helen, Leda, Pallas Athene, the Countless Cathleen, rose, phoenix, or any other named or nameless image of beauty. And Yeats wrote plays as well as poems with Maud Gonne in mind.

In the poem “Adam’s Curse” the “you” of the poem is Maud Gonne, while the “beautiful mild women” is her sister Kathleen. The poem is addressed to Maud Gonne and the subject and style are simple, clear, personal, and unadorned. There are 2 subjects of the poem; the first is the curse of the work (the work of writing poetry, the work in being beautiful, and the work of love). The second is the intensely personal revelation of Yeats grief at pursing this woman who welcomed him as a friend but rejected him as a lover.


http://www.thewildgeese.com/pages/gonne.html http://www.irelandseye.com/aarticles/history/people/whoswho/m_gonne.shtm http://www.ulst.ac.uk/thisisland/modules/poetry/bio.html Conner, Lester I., A Yeats Dictionary. Syracuse University Press. Syracuse, NY. 1998. Gonne MacBride, Maud, A Servant of the Queen. The Boydell Press. Woodbridge, Suffolk. 1983. White, A. and Jeffares, A.N. The Gonne-Yeats Letters 1893-1938. Hutchinson. 1992.


BBC NEWS | Northern Ireland | Funeral of suicide teenager

Funeral of suicide teenager

Bernard Cairns' body was removed from scaffolding at the church

A north Belfast teenager who hanged himself just hours after his best friend's funeral is due to be buried on Tuesday.
The body of 18-year-old Bernard Cairns was found in the grounds of Holy Cross Church in Ardoyne, hours after the funeral of another teenager who had taken his own life.

Bernard's body was removed from scaffolding at the church by a priest on Saturday afternoon.

His best friend Anthony O'Neill, also 18, died last week and his funeral Mass was held at the church earlier that day.

Community groups in north Belfast have called for urgent action to stop the number of suicides in the Ardoyne area.

" They have broke my heart - they have broken me in two - they couldn't hurt me any more than this, "
Audrey O'Neill

The organisations met on Monday to discuss the alarming rise in suicides among young people.

Republican paramilitaries are being linked to the increase as some of the young people took their own lives after being attacked.

Since the beginning of the year, 13 people have taken their lives in the area, according to north Belfast priest Father Aidan Troy.

Distress line

Father Troy described the statistics as "terrifying".

Last year, Anthony O'Neill was kidnapped, stripped, beaten up and forced into a manhole. His family blame the INLA.

His mother Audrey said: "I think it just got too much for him. He left me a note to say he loved me and that he wanted to be with his daddy in heaven," she said.

Anthony O'Neill, 18, died last week

"They have broke my heart - they have broken me in two. They couldn't hurt me any more than this. He had everything in front of him - he was my baby, my youngest of nine."

Those at the meeting in Ardoyne decided to set up an emergency distress line in a bid to cut the number of suicides.

A counselling service and phone number will be established to help young people who need someone to talk to.

'Spontaneous meeting'

Fr Troy said: "A counselling service will be put in place from tonight onwards.

"There will be a number of people contactable should young people feel the need to speak to somebody confidentially."

Father Troy said the situation was "almost out of control".

"I think there is a huge feeling in the community that there is a huge link being drawn between paramilitary beatings, punishments and threats and the deterioration in the mental health of some of the young ones that have taken their own lives," he said.

"There was a spontaneous meeting last night which drew in excess of 100 people which I see as the beginning of people saying they want this to stop, and to stop now."

Father Troy said the feeling in the area was that the Irish National Liberation Army was responsible for a growing number of paramilitary attacks on young people in the area.

The paramilitary group declared itself to be on ceasefire in August 1998.

However, Paul Little, of the IRSP, which is the political wing of the INLA, said it was wrong to blame the paramilitaries.

Mr Little said: "If you're asking the question directly, do I believe that the INLA is directly responsible for these young men deaths, I'm telling you I don't believe that they are."



No Irish need apply
Dublin government raise civil service concerns

British officials have fobbed off concerns expressed by the Irish government about the ‘no Irish need apply’ ban in the Northern Ireland Civil Service (NICS) by engaging “in typical government double-speak”, a Tory MP told the Andersonstown News.

At the British-Irish intergovernmental summit that took place between Brian Cowen and Paul Murphy in Dublin on January 22, Irish officials had formally raised concerns about the British government’s ongoing ban against Irish nationals who apply for positions in the NICS.

However British officials responded to the Irish government by flagging up the implications of legislation tabled at Westminster – even though there is little likelihood of it becoming law.

Catholics have historically been heavily under-represented in the NICS, particularly in the senior Civil Service.

In 1996 a new ban was introduced to prevent Irish nationals from taking up employment in the NICS.

Figures obtained by the Andersonstown News last year indicated that Catholic representation in the senior ranks couldn’t – on current growth rates – reflect societal ratios until the year 2057.

And with the percentage of nationalists and republicans in the senior Civil Service even lower than the percentage of Catholics, both Sinn Féin and the SDLP have consistently campaigned for the removal of the ban on Irish nationals.

Both parties argue that the ban is discriminatory and unlawful, and that it deliberately obstructs improvements to the overall representativeness of the NICS.

A senior Irish government source last night confirmed that the issue was formally raised with the British government at Farmleigh on January 22.

In response the British government said that “the current nationality requirements would be considered in the light of the progress of the Crown Employment (Nationality) Bill 2004, currently before parliament”.

However, the Andersonstown News has established that this Bill – cited as an indicator of progress by the British – is nothing more than a Private Member’s Bill which Andrew Dinsmore MP is attempting to introduce on his own for the second year in a row.

And, like last year, informed sources admit that this year’s Bill will remain stalled indefinitely.

This is primarily because of the virulent opposition of a single Tory MP – Eric Forth.

But it is also because of the British government’s decision not to prioritise the Bill on the floor of the House.

Yesterday the proponent of the Bill, Andrew Dinsmore MP, told the Andersonstown News that the legislation, if passed, would “sweep away the existing ban”.

Having had contact with nationalist politicians in the North, Mr Dinsmore said he understood the importance and implications of the Bill for Irish nationals seeking employment to the NICS.

“However it is being blocked by the Tories and (while that continues) the prospects of the Bill becoming law are slim.”

Quoting from Civil Service trade unions which also oppose the ‘no Irish’ ban, Mr Dinsmore noted that the current “nationality rules are blatantly discriminatory against people from the Irish Republic and the Commonwealth”.

Tory MP, Eric Forth, yesterday confirmed that he will continue to oppose the passage of the Bill – thereby stalling it indefinitely.

“I don’t believe in discrimination. I don’t believe in reverse discrimination. I don’t believe in affirmative action. I don’t believe in quotas,” Mr Forth told the Andersonstown News.

“I am totally against this Bill. It keeps coming up at the end of hearings and I will continue to be there to oppose it.

“I totally respect the Irish republic as a sovereign country, but I don’t see why that country should have any special treatment.”

Mr Forth said that the British government’s decision to respond to the concerns of Irish officials by referring to the Crown Employment (Nationality) Bill is “typical government double-speak”.

“The reality is that the government don’t feel sufficiently strongly about this issue to bring the Bill forward themselves,” said Mr Forth.

A British government spokesperson confirmed yesterday that no bill will be put forward by the government at this time because of “competing priorities”.

Journalist:: Jarlath Kearney


Suicide: 13 Dead in only 6 weeks

•Teenager is found hanging from Holy Cross scaffolding
•Latest victim’s best friend took his own life just last week
•Glenbryn girl joins grim toll of the dead
•North Belfast left reeling by upsurge


Young man hangs himself from Holy Cross Church

North Belfast is in a state of shock this morning after two more suicides brought to 13 the number of people who have killed themselves in just six weeks.

The latest victim took his own life in front of hundreds of passers-by after climbing scaffolding on the spire of Holy Cross Church on Saturday evening.
Bernard Cairns climbed the scaffolding before taking off his shirt and hanging himself with it from the top of the builders’ scaffolding.

There were traumatic scenes as friends and family of the 18-year-old watched as the emergency services were called in to remove the young man’s body from the church.

The victim’s father Anthony arrived on the scene and watched as his son was lowered from the top of the church spire.

Barney Cairns had attended the funeral of his close friend, 18-year-old suicide victim Anthony O’Neill, just hours before taking his own life.

He is the latest in a group of friends to die in a suicide cluster that has devastated the close-knit Ardoyne community.

A young woman from Glenbryn also took her own life over the weekend, bringing the suicide death toll in North Belfast to 13 since the turn of the year.
Fears that the suicide scourge will continue to spread prompted local priest Fr Aidan Troy to hold a prayer service yesterday for friends of the two latest victims.

However there was anger among some of those gathered at the service. They claimed that the INLA had contributed to the young men’s deaths by targeting the friends in punishment attacks. The service had to be cut short.

Fr Troy and Fr Gary Donegan had been the first on the scene, climbing to the top of the scaffolding to administer the last rites and say prayers until the emergency services arrived.

Fr Aidan Troy said the last few days had been harrowing for the entire community, he also warned the next 24 hours are crucial.

“There is a great deal of anger in the community, the situation is very volatile.
“When emotions are running high as they are now it is very easy for young people to get caught up and swept along.

“I fear this is not the last suicide in this area, the next 24 hours are crucial.”
And Fr Troy added: “There needs to be a concerted effort on the part of all the agencies to put a stop to this. I fear this will happen again.

“All I can do at this time is listen to people and remain on the street and close to where I am needed most.”

Phil McTaggert’s son – Philip, or ‘Pip’ – was a friend of the two latest victims – he also took his own life in the grounds of Holy Cross.

The death of his son prompted Phil to start the PIPs project aimed at addressing the suicide crisis.

“This community is facing a crisis. These young men, including my own son, all come from the top streets in Ardoyne, they all grew up together and knew each other.

“My heartfelt condolences go out to the Cairns family at this terrible time.
“Plans to hold an emergency public meeting this week to discuss how to break this cycle are already underway.”

Journalist:: Staff Reporter

BBC NEWS | Northern Ireland | Paramilitary 'link' to deaths

Paramilitary 'link' to deaths

Father Troy said the situation was "almost out of control"

Paramilitaries are being linked to an alarming rise in suicides among young people in north Belfast.

Since the beginning of the year, 13 people have taken their lives in the area, according to north Belfast priest Father Aidan Troy.

At the weekend, the body of an 18-year-old youth was found in the grounds of Holy Cross Church in Ardoyne, hours after the funeral of another teenager who had taken his own life.

Father Troy described the statistics as "terrifying".

Bernard Cairns' body was removed from scaffolding at the church by Father Troy on Saturday afternoon.

His best friend Anthony O'Neill, also 18, died last week and his funeral Mass was held at the church earlier that day.

"There is no role for anybody to be judge, jury and punisher in this community, they have a mandate from nobody."
--Father Aidan Troy

Father Troy said the situation was "almost out of control".

"I think there is a huge feeling in the community that there is a huge link being drawn between paramilitary beatings, punishments and threats and the deterioration in the mental health of some of the young ones that have taken their own lives," he said.

"There was a spontaneous meeting last night which drew in excess of 100 people which I see as the beginning of people saying they want this to stop, and to stop now.

"I have been calling for a clear statement that there is no role for anybody to be judge, jury and punisher in this community, they have a mandate from nobody."

Father Troy said the feeling in the area was that the Irish National Liberation Army was responsible for a growing number of paramilitary attacks on young people in the area.

The paramilitary group declared itself to be on ceasefire in August 1998.

Number of factors

However, Paul Little, of the IRSP, which is the political wing of the INLA, said it was wrong to blame the paramilitaries.

When asked on BBC Radio Ulster about the paramilitary-style assaults, Mr Little said: "If you're asking the question directly, do I believe that the INLA is directly responsible for these young men deaths, I'm telling you I don't believe that they are."

He said he did not speak for the INLA and was "not going to attempt to now".

Father Troy has said there is every chance that Mr O'Neill would not be the last young person from the community to take their own life.

"I hope I don't hear this again but if somebody was to phone me again and say there was another one I have got to say I would not be surprised," he said.

"I'm not sure what is happening, I think there are a number of factors coming together. I don't think there is one simple cause because if there was there are people, surely, who would be able to move in to stop it.

"I think there is the whole question of the influence of paramilitaries, drugs, alcohol, and decades of deprivation.

"There is nothing here and there is also an unknown factor which I totally believe in and that is that every suicide is different.

"Even though the factors may be common I think the person who does this takes some secret with them to the grave."

Community groups in the Ardoyne area met on Monday afternoon to call for urgent action to stop the number of suicides.


::: u.tv :::

::: u.tv :::

SUNDAY 15/02/2004 17:07:10 UTV
More Stakeknife revelations

The secret role of alleged British intelligence agent Freddie Scappaticci was withheld during a trial which ended in the jailing of top Irish republican Danny Morrison, it has been claimed.

By:Press Association

Police Special Branch asked the Director of Public Prosecutions that there should be no disclosure of his details for fear of blowing the cover of one their top agents in Northern Ireland, according to a new book.

Scappaticci, 59, it is claimed, was second in command of the IRA's internal security unit who once interrogated and threatened to kill a security force informer at a house next door to where Morrison was arrested in west Belfast.

At the time in January 1990, Morrison was Sinn Fein's director of publicity, and he was later jailed for eight years for his part in falsely imprisoning the man Scappaticci questioned.

It is claimed he tipped off military intelligence and had left the house to other republicans before it was surrounded by police and troops. Morrison managed to slip away into a house next door, but was arrested after trying to bluff his way out.

Scappaticci, who was never charged, has categorically denied being the agent, known as Stakeknife, but the book reveals the lengths to which the then RUC Special Branch and M15 went to conceal his identity as part of a plan to seize Morrison.

The CID submitted its own file to the DPP, but was unaware of separate documentation supplied by police and military intelligence who urged that Scappaticci's role as an agent be kept secret.

The DPP agreed, according to journalist Greg Harkin, who co-wrote the book with a former intelligence officer known as Martin Ingram. He operated with the Army's anti-terrorist Force Research Unit in Northern Ireland for almost 10 years.

Morrison was jailed in May 1991 for falsely imprisoning Sandy Lynch from Magherafelt, Co Londonderry at a house in west Belfast. Lynch, a British agent, was unaware that his chief interrogator Scappaticci was one as well and that his detention was part of an elaborate plan to trap Morrison.

It is alleged Morrison went to the house after it was agreed Lynch would admit his guilt as an informer at a later press conference.

Harkin, the Irish editor of the Sunday People, claims it was officers working for the Northern Ireland Ombudsman Nuala O'Loan who discovered the decision to withhold the details of Scappaticci's alleged secret life.

He says Scappaticci agreed to become a British agent as far back as 1978 after suffering a beating by an IRA rival. Ingram claimed he became aware of Stakeknife's identity when Scappaticci was arrested, but never charged, for drunken driving in Belfast in 1984.

Morrison was jailed by Sir Brian Hutton, the then Northern Ireland Lord Chief Justice, who later became Lord Hutton who investigated the death of Iraqi arms expert Dr David Kelly.

Harkin believes Morrison may have been the victim of a miscarriage of justice because details about Lynch's previous background did not emerge during the trial.

He added: "Once people have read what Martin Ingram discloses, I don't think they will be left in any doubt whatsoever as to the status and role of Freddie Scappaticci."

:: Stakeknife: Britain's Secret Agents in Ireland is published on Wednesday by the O'Brien Press

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