News about the Irish & Irish American culture, music, news, sports. This is hosted by the Irish Aires radio show on KPFT-FM 90.1 in Houston, Texas (a Pacifica community radio station)

October 16, 2005

Ex-Cop: Adair UDA's Stalking You

To Index of Monthly Archives
To October 2005 Index
To receive this news via email, click HERE.
No Message is necessary.

News about Ireland & the Irish

SL 10/16/05 Ex-Cop Tells Adair: 'UDA's Stalking You'
SL 10/16/05 UVF-LVF Fury At Leak Leads To Truce Setback
II 10/16/05 Loyalists Attack Young Man
SL 10/16/05 DUP Anger As RIR Base Faces The Axe
SL 10/16/05 'Slab Shafted By IRA'
LL 10/15/05 CIRA Warning: No Ceasefire Or Sellout
SM 10/16/05 IRA Know-How May Have Killed Troops
BB 10/16/05 PUP 'To Maintain Links With UVF'
UT 10/16/05 SDLP Criticism For PUP Decision
LA 10/16/05 N. Ireland's Protestants Feeling Slighted
DI 10/16/05 Opin: When The DUP Boat Comes In
SL 10/16/05 Councillor Blasts 'Over-The-Top' Cops
II 10/16/05 Garland Planned A Global Revolution
TP 10/16/05 Garland: Stickie Wicket
IO 10/16/05 Daughter Of Frank Shortt 'Outraged'
BB 10/16/05 Ruling Due On Total Smoking Ban
TJ 10/16/05 Irish Government Focuses On Immigrants Abroad
SL 10/16/05 Ulster Case Dismissed In Irish
ES 10/16/05 Flatley: Sizzle Over The Top


Ex-Cop Tells Adair: 'UDA's Stalking You'

Chilling warning issued in wake of Gray murder

By Stephen Gordon
16 October 2005

DEPOSED loyalist warlord Johnny Adair has been given a
chilling warning that the UDA are planning to murder him in
Bolton, before Christmas.

The warning has come from Johnston Brown, the retired
detective who put the notorious former Shankill UDA boss
behind bars, in 1995.

Mr Brown believes the UDA are stalking Adair at his Bolton

"I've been told the UDA have sent men over to Bolton to
watch him. He's under surveillance," said Brown, who
continues to keep his ear close to the ground.

"I've no doubt they are planning to kill him just as they
killed Jim Gray.

"And, whatever I think of Johnny Adair, I wouldn't want to
see him shot down in the street like a dog. No one deserves
that," said the ex-CID detective.

Adair ordered a bomb attack on Mr Brown's family home in
Ballyclare in October 2000, in revenge for the detective's
key role in having him jailed for 16 years for directing

But, Mr Brown says he believes Adair deserves to be alerted
that his life is in imminent danger.

"I have no doubt that Special Branch will have received the
same information I've received, but, whether or not they've
passed on the warning, I don't know," he said.

The UDA regard Adair as "unfinished business", blaming him
for a bloody internal feud and, in particular, the murder
of the terror group's East Antrim 'brigadier', John Gregg.

Mr Brown recently stated that he believes Adair, who has
had a miserable time in Bolton since his release from jail
in January, is plotting a return to Northern Ireland.

Earlier this month, Adair appeared in court to admit
beating his wife, Gina.

He brutally attacked her only hours after being released
from prison, where he had been serving a 39-day sentence on
a harassment charge.

?Johnston Brown has written a book about his extraordinary
career. Read exclusive extracts from: Into The Dark: 30
Years In The RUC in next week's Sunday Life.


UVF-LVF Fury At Leak Leads To Truce Setback

16 October 2005

A UVF-LVF truce has been set back by "months" because of
leaks to the media.

Loyalist sources say reports last week that the LVF was
about to disband were "unfounded".

LVF activists in Belfast and mid-Ulster are angry at
reports that the organisation was about to fold up in the
face of scores of UVF attacks which have left four people
dead since July.

Informed sources said yesterday that no deal had been
brokered with either organisation and that those behind the
leaks had caused "enormous damage".

Said one source: "Progress had been made, but there were
one or two sticking points to be ironed out and they were
difficult matters that would have taken a bit more time.

"But now people have gone away angry at the attempt to spin
this against the LVF."

A senior LVF source said they believed the UVF was having
difficulties convincing all its members to end the attacks.

Said the source: "There is no question that the LVF is
going to disband because of fear of the UVF.

"We believe they can't deliver all their members to the
position of ending this feud and have internal problems."

A neutral observer familiar with the negotiations added:
"The feud will have to be officially ended and ended
absolutely. Then both groups can decide their futures, but
that will take months."


Loyalists Attack Young Man

ANTRIM police are treating as attempted murder a loyalist
paramilitary-style attack which has left a young man in a
serious but stable condition in hospital.

The 23-year-old victim was found in the hallway of a flat
at Hollybank Drive in the Monkstown area of Newtownabbey.
Police said he had been viciously beaten, shot in the legs
and arms and left to die. Detectives investigating the
incident have appealed for witnesses.


DUP Anger As RIR Base Faces The Axe

16 October 2005

BESSBROOK Army base in Co Armagh is set to be axed before
Christmas, it has been claimed.

Robert Smith, the DUP's deputy mayor of Craigavon, made the
claim in the wake of the news that Royal Irish troops are
to pull out of Fort Mahon barracks, in Portadown, next

Councillor Smith described the decision to close the two Co
Armagh bases as premature and a "knee-jerk" reaction to IRA

"At the moment, the risk posed by dissident republicans in
this area is high," said Cllr Smith.

"We do not know what these organisations will do in the
months ahead. The continued closure of military bases, in
Co Armagh, leaves the area wide open and extremely

The last part-time RIR troops at Mahon Barracks are set to
transfer to Drumadd Barracks, Armagh, on November 15.

An Army spokesman refused to confirm or deny Mr Smith's
claim that the Bessbrook base was to close.

"We will not comment on speculation about the future of
military bases or units in Northern Ireland," he said.

"Full support is provided to the PSNI as required. Military
deployment is regularly reviewed to ensure maximum
efficiency and effectiveness."

But Willie Frazer, of the South Armagh victim's group FAIR,
said: "This closure of the Bessbrook base is further proof,
if that was ever needed, of continued government
capitulation to Sinn Fein/IRA demands.

"The deliberate dismantling of security in this area is
creating a republican fiefdom, where Protestants have no
future whatsoever."


'Slab Shafted By IRA'

16 October 2005

FORMER comrades of alleged IRA chief of staff Thomas 'Slab'
Murphy may have deliberately leaked information about his
criminal empire along the border, it was claimed.

It is understood IRA bosses believed Murphy was considering
defecting to the dissidents, or forming his own breakaway
group, in the weeks leading up to IRA decommissioning.

According to sources, the south Armagh farmer, who is
believed to have masterminded countless terrorist attacks,
opposed decommissioning, and had become dissatisfied with
IRA inactivity in recent months.

IRA commanders feared Murphy was about to jump ship -
taking his vast financial resources with him.

Said a source: "There were big fears that Slab was about to
defect or go it alone.

"Provo bosses knew the threat that posed - they knew the
exact power of Slab's financial resources, and what he
could do with them.

"They simply could not allow anything to jeopardise the
decommissioning issue.

"Slab had to be sorted - and sorted soon.

"He had become a major risk to the political agenda of Sinn

Sources said information on how Murphy was laundering money
obtained from smuggling and crime was deliberately leaked
to the Republic's Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB), several
weeks ago.

This included details of Murphy's property investments in
the UK and the Republic, and business interests in Dundalk.

Added the source: "The CAB was told about property
interests in the UK and Bulgaria. They were also given the
names of the two Dundalk running Slab's operations in
England, and when and where bank lodgements had been made.

"The Provos have shafted Slab big time - and he's not a
happy camper at the moment."


CIRA Warning: No Ceasefire Or Sellout

By Barry Duggan

A CHILLING warning has been issued by the Continuity IRA in
Limerick that there will be no ceasefire and their armed
campaign will continue.

The Limerick Leader received the statement from the
Limerick command of the Continuity IRA (CIRA) after
Tuesday's story titled "City Republicans deny they are
about to merge" with the Real IRA (RIRA) in Northern

The statement from the dissident republican group was
accompanied by a recognised code word.

The statement read, "The CIRA wishes to deny media
speculation in recent days that any Limerick command staff
are engaged in talks with the Armagh RIRA. There are no
talks nor discussions with any other Republican
organisation and there are no contacts with RIRA

It continued: "These false rumours are being spread by
disgruntled people and are aimed at imposing damage on the
Republican movement.

"The Limerick Command fully supports and agrees with the
army leadership and re-iterates the position in relation to
the national question. The gun will only be taken out of
politics when the foreign invader leaves our shores."

"We support the call of the army leadership for Republicans
to unite and present a united campaign of national

"The treachery of recent weeks is to be deplored and we
wish to state that there will be no decommissioning, no
ceasefire and no sellout-the campaign continues," concluded
the CIRA statement.

A report in Daily Ireland said the Limerick dissidents were
set to combine with the RIRA after leading CIRA members
from Limerick visited RIRA leader, Liam Campbell in
Portlaoise Prison with a view to linking up with his south
Armagh unit.

A Garda source said however, that it "would not be
surprising" if the CIRA members in Limerick were in
negotiations with the RIRA in Northern Ireland.

"They are capable of everything and still have access to
arms and ammunition," said the source.


IRA Know-How May Have Killed Troops

October 17, 2005

London: Sophisticated bomb technology employed by the Irish
Republican Army has been used to kill British soldiers in
southern Iraq, a London newspaper reported yesterday.

The Independent on Sunday said that eight soldiers died in
five roadside blasts after being attacked with bombs
triggered by infra-red beams.

The bombs and the firing devices used to kill the soldiers,
as well as two private security guards, were initially
created by British security services as part of a counter-
terrorism strategy at the height of the Troubles in the
early 1990s, the paper said. But the technology fell into
IRA hands during a botched "sting" operation about 15 years

A military intelligence officer with experience in Northern
Ireland said that one trigger used in a recent Iraqi
bombing was a three-way device, combining a command wire, a
radio signal and an infra-red beam - a technique perfected
by the IRA.

Britain claims that the bomb-making expertise now being
used in southern Iraq was passed on by Iran's Revolutionary
Guard through Hezbollah, the revolutionary Islamist group
in Lebanon.

But a former agent who infiltrated the IRA said the
technology reached the Middle East through the IRA's co-
operation with Palestinian groups. "The IRA shared
its equipment and expertise with FARC guerillas in
Colombia, the Basque separatists, ETA and Palestinian
groups," he said.


PUP 'To Maintain Links With UVF'

The Progressive Unionist Party has ruled out severing its
links with the Ulster Volunteer Force.

In a statement issued on Saturday, the party said it would
instead "work in partnership with all those committed to
transforming loyalist communities".

The statement was released after the party's annual
conference in Belfast.

There had been speculation the PUP would distance itself
from the UVF, which has been linked to five deaths in its
feud with the LVF.

The PUP is also linked to the Red Hand Commando.

In July, Northern Ireland Secretary Peter Hain withheld the
party's assembly allowances for another year.

The decision followed the latest report from ceasefire
watchdog, the Independent Monitoring Commission (IMC).

In September, the IMC blamed the UVF for five murders and
15 attempted murders as part of its feud with the LVF.

Mediation attempts

A special report said the LVF carried out two murder bids,
but their violence was mainly a response to UVF attacks.

Its report on the loyalist feud led NI Secretary Peter Hain
to declare the UVF ceasefire had broken down.

The IMC said it had noted statements by the Progressive
Unionist Party indicating that they could not stop the
feud, but said the party could not have it both ways.

They must disassociate themselves from the UVF or accept
the consequences, it said.

Meanwhile, a Presbyterian minister, who has been talking to
the leaders of the UVF and the LVF, said he was hopeful of
a breakthrough in efforts to end the feud.

The Reverend Mervyn Gibson, who sits on the Loyalist
Commission, told the BBC's Inside Politics programme on
Saturday that attempts to mediate were "still continuing".

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/10/16 08:32:14 GMT


SDLP Criticism For PUP Decision

The Progressive Unionist Party was today accused of wasting
a golden opportunity to send a strong message to the
loyalist Ulster Volunteer Force that violence had to stop.

There had been intense speculation that the UVF`s
involvement in a bloody feud with the Loyalist Volunteer
Force would prompt a parting of the ways with the PUP which
has provided its political voice for more than a decade.

The UVF have been blamed for five murders and 15 attempted
murders during the bitter feud.

A special report from the Independent Monitoring Commission
on the feud in September led Northern Ireland Secretary
Peter Hain to declare the UVF ceasefire had broken down.

But speaking the day after the PUP annual conference was
held behind closed doors in an east Belfast hotel, David
Ervine ruled out severing the links and said they would
instead work in partnership to sort out problems.

He said: "They have a lot to sort out. Do we want them to
sort it out ? Yes.

"Do we want to give them the time and space to sort it out?
The Progressive Unionist Party is saying yes, give them
space and lets get it sorted out."

In a statement the PUP said it was committed to conflict
transformation and processes that "empower and build a
strong, confident and vibrant loyalist community".

It said confidence and stability were central factors in
securing a peaceful future for all society.

And it said the PUP had emerged from its conference
reinvigorated and committed to working for its community.

But the SDLP said the PUP had missed an opportunity to
create a turning point for loyalism.

North Belfast MLA Alban Maginness said instead there had
been a statement of "stunning blandness" about commitment
to transforming communities.

"There are people committed to transforming loyalist
communities into a drug-ridden wasteland, and others
committed to creating a free-fire zone around Orange
marches, he said.

Mr Maginness said there had been many who had hoped Mr
Ervine and the PUP would stop trying to walk on both sides
of the road on paramilitary violence.

"They wanted a lead on the murderous vendetta against the
LVF, on the firing of 150 live rounds at police during the
Whiterock riots, on sinister campaigns against Catholics in
North Antrim.

"Sadly they got none of these things," he said.

The message needed to go as clearly as possible to the UVF
and everyone associated with it that they were faced right
now with a choice - peaceful politics or jail.

"David Ervine and the PUP were in a position to put that
message across in the clearest possible terms.

"They still can, but first they must come off the fence and
call murder by its proper name. Politics is about
leadership, the PUP must learn this and learn to give
leadership," said Mr Maginness.


N. Ireland's Protestants Feeling Slighted

Angry over perceived favoritism toward Catholics, the
province's pro-British majority has recently rioted, hoping
to send a wake-up call.

By John Daniszewski, Times Staff Writer

BELFAST, Northern Ireland — When Carla Hart sends the
children out the door of their row house on Cluan Place in
a working-class part of East Belfast, she never knows what
will fall from the skies. And it's not just the weather
she's worried about.

Once, the homemaker said, she was struck on the head by a
flying bolt. In July, her 9-year-old daughter was hit by a
marble. But at least it didn't hit her 6-month-old in a
nearby pram.

The inhabitants of the 22-house Protestant enclave say they
regularly endure a cascade of bricks, bottles and even
blast bombs from the other side of the towering barrier
wall that separates them from their Roman Catholic
neighbors. And when they summon police, she and her
neighbors complain, the officers come late, if at all — and
then ask what they did to start it.

Hart moved to the street with her husband, William, three
years ago, after the previous residents had been burned

"The Catholics are expanding," she said. "They wanted to
take this street, and I did not want to give it up. So I
said, 'No.' "

Like white Afrikaners in South Africa pressed to cede power
to blacks at the end of apartheid, many of the 1 million
Protestants in Northern Ireland see themselves as members
of a lost and orphaned tribe, left to fend for themselves
against an ascendant and more deft opponent.

The feeling remains despite the 1998 Good Friday agreement,
which was meant to bring peace to British-ruled Northern
Ireland and commit Protestants and Catholics to work
together in one devolved government.

Proudly loyal to Britain and the queen, and maintaining a
55% majority in this province, the descendants of Scots and
English who came to colonize Ireland in the 17th century
cannot understand why British Prime Minister Tony Blair
seems so hard on them while, in their eyes, pandering to
the Irish Republican Army and its political ally Sinn Fein.

"The Catholics are getting everything they want, and we are
getting nothing," said Hart, voicing a view widely held on
the gritty streets of Protestant Belfast. The unionist
community's anger flared into five days of riots last month
whose intensity caught nearly everyone here by surprise,
with Protestant protesters throwing projectiles and blast
bombs, setting cars and stores alight and, in some cases,
firing live ammunition at police vehicles.

The disturbances broke out at a time when an outsider might
think that the unionist side should be most pleased.

After years of delay, the IRA in July formally renounced
its military campaign to unite Northern Ireland with the
Irish Republic to the south and promised to turn in its
stores of guns, ammunition and plastic explosives. Last
week, the Independent International Commission on
Decommissioning certified that tons of IRA weapons and
explosives had been put "beyond use."

But in a Protestant community long cynical about IRA
concessions, the decommissioning was met with suspicion.
The Rev. Ian Paisley, leader of the Democratic Unionist
Party, had wanted a public turnover of weapons, saying that
the IRA deserved to wear "sackcloth and ashes" for its role
in political violence over the last four decades that left
3,600 people dead.

Nothing of the kind happened, and even the commission said
that it essentially had taken the word of the IRA that all
the munitions had been turned in.

At a meeting Thursday with Blair, Paisley reiterated calls
for what he termed "fairness and equality for the unionist
community." In a 64-page document, Paisley listed a number
of demands, including that Blair withdraw plans to totally
dismantle the army's predominantly Protestant Royal Irish

The province seems to have reverted to its old state of
stalemate, with Protestant political leaders saying they
will resist any calls to reinstitute joint governance with
Sinn Fein. Last month's riots were also like a bad
flashback — to the 1960s, when the modern "troubles" began.

"I had to deal with 6-year-old kids rioting out there,"
said David McNarry of the Ulster Unionist Party, speaking
of how disheartened his community was with the peace

"I doubt very much if there would be a majority again
supporting a referendum [to endorse the Good Friday
agreement] if it took place tomorrow. There certainly
wouldn't be a majority of unionists…. Unionists see their
British identity under threat."

"It wasn't about housing and it wasn't about jobs — it was
directly political and it was about the sense of alienation
from that political process," agreed David Ervine of the
Progressive Unionist Party, a strong supporter of the 1998

Brian Kingston, manager of the Shankill Mirror newspaper,
which chronicled the recent disturbances, called them
"disastrous" for the physical damage to the area. But some
believe that they served as a wake-up call for Blair and
his Northern Ireland office, he said.

"There are those who said, 'Well, at least our people have
drawn a line' and said they are not going to keep being put
down," he said. "People know they can't just constantly be
taken for granted."

Peter Hain, the British secretary for Northern Ireland, has
been trying to assuage the anger of Protestants, reminding
them in speeches that the Good Friday agreement ended IRA
attacks while ensuring that the future would be decided by
the ballot, not the bullet.

But for some the words rang hollow, in part because Hain
grew up in South Africa and cut his political teeth
campaigning against colonialism and apartheid. They see him
as personally agnostic about whether Northern Ireland
should remain under British rule. When he visited a small
town here in August, protesters greeted him with placards
reading, "British Citizens Demand British Rights."

The riots in Belfast, the provincial capital, were sparked
by what, on the surface, was an innocuous decision — an
order by the parades commission to move one parade route
used by the unionist Orange Order a mere 100 yards away
from a street now inhabited by some Catholics.

"Now, the frustration levels in the loyalist Protestant
community are beyond a joke. People think it was about a
hundred yards of road, but it was a lot more than that,"
said Jim Wilson, a community activist for the Progressive
Unionist Party. "It was all to do about what's been given
to the republican movement over the last lot of years…. And
they build up."

Wilson also decried the behavior of the police, who in
years past had been seen to be solidly behind the

"Police just come out and run at people and get into them,"
he said. "I know nationalists and Catholics always have had
that impression of [the Northern Ireland police force], but
we're trying to move forward. You can't move forward by
moving our community back. We should have learned that."

In the view of Wilson and many Protestants, the secretive
IRA and its political representative Sinn Fein represent a
sinister force in Irish politics on both sides of the
border, one that has literally gotten away with murder.
Particularly galling from this viewpoint is the release
from prison in July of Sean Kelly, who was convicted of a
notorious 1993 IRA bombing, freed under the Good Friday
agreement and then rearrested in June of this year for
allegedly renewing terrorist activities.

If upheavals such as last month's riots are what it takes
to get the authorities' attention, some community leaders
believe, then they may well happen again.

"Someone comes at you with something, even if you're a
pacifist, you will have to defend yourself to try to keep
yourself alive or to keep whatever it is you believe in
alive," Wilson said.

"And that is what slowly but surely is happening to us. If
we don't get together as a people, then we're lost."


Opin: When The DUP Boat Comes In

The Democratic Unionist Party must be regretting the fact
that its list of concessions demanded of the British
government and recently presented to Tony Blair only ran to
56 pages. The British give every indication of being
content to give the party all the concessions it is
demanding — and then some.

So far, the DUP has struck pay dirt with its demands for
seats in the House of Lords. Three of its number will join
David Trimble in the British upper house when new
appointments are announced.

It is also going to get the lion's share of positions on
the Policing Board, a golden handshake for the redundant
RIR soldiers, and an economic package for disadvantaged
unionist working-class areas.

One presumes the British will use their largesse to demand
that the DUP cease sitting down with drug dealers and
warlords on the North and West Belfast Parades Forum. Peter
Hain might also wish to press for some visibility from the
Paisleyites on the demand that the Ulster Resistance
arsenal be decommissioned.

One hopes the British will be equally generous when it
comes to long-running nationalist sores such as policing
and economic justice. Or is just those who are opposed to
peace who get rewarded?


Councillor Blasts 'Over-The-Top' Cops

16 October 2005

A FURIOUS city councillor has accused police of "provoking"
a full-scale riot at a strife-ridden interface in west

Frank McCoubrey, who lives in and also represents the
Springmartin estate, said last night:"Police have always
been welcome in this community - but that may no longer be
the case."

A number of complaints have already been lodged with the
Police Ombudsman's office following disturbances in the
area and on the Ballygomartin Road, a week ago.

The trouble flared with stone-throwing - but later
escalated into petrol bombing.

Councillor McCoubrey, who represents the Court ward as an
independent, said: "We're talking about kids here, and they
were not all from Springmartin.

"This is one of the biggest interface areas in west Belfast
and youngsters tend to confront each other at night.

"Public representatives have managed to keep a lid on it
for a long time, but the police reaction on this particular
occasion was way over the top."

He claimed a 12-year-old girl was "manhandled" by police
and thrown against a wall.

"In another serious incident, a Land Rover mounted a
footpath and a youth, who was on crutches, was knocked down
and had to be taken to hospital," he said.

"Without doubt, these incidents provoked a reaction from
people within this community, people already verbally
abused by the PSNI day and night."

Councillor McCoubrey, who along with unionist councillors
has withdrawn from the city's district policing partnership
boards, added:"There was just no call for what the police
did, it was excessive and provocative by any standards.

"I think the police have some major decisions to take about
regaining trust in loyalist areas."

A police spokesman said he could not comment on matters
that were being investigated by the Ombudsman.

He added: "What I can say is that police were attacked by
between 90 and 100 people, and one Land Rover alone was
struck by eight petrol-bombs."


Garland Planned A Global Revolution

A SCENE from one of the last great Communist conspiracies
to undermine the capitalist West could be played out over
the next two years as the former Chief of Staff of the
Official IRA, Sean Garland, and five others face
extradition to the United States over counterfeiting

Last Friday week, acting on a warrant from the US Secret
Service, via the US Attorney General, members of the PSNI
walked into a bar in Belfast city centre where members of
the tiny Worker's Party were gathering on the eve of their
annual conference.

WP President and one-time IRA chief of staff Sean Garland,
71, was held overnight and served with an extradition
warrant from the United States. He applied for and was
granted bail the next day.

And, that might have been that. It should seem unlikely
that a superpower would seek the extradition of a pensioner
living in a modest bungalow outside Navan, Co Meath on
counterfeiting allegations.

However, Garland has been the centre of the US Secret
Service's attention for more than a decade. He and two
other former members of the Official IRA/Workers Party are
regarded as the architects of a worldwide conspiracy to
undermine the US dollar and to use the proceeds to finance
another workers' revolution.

Bizarre as it seems, Garland and at least some of his
associates apparently harboured this pipe dream. Others, as
has been shown in a British court case two years ago, were
in it purely for the money.

The conspiracy, first revealed three years ago in the
Sunday Independent, sprang from a relationship between the
Official IRA and its political wing, the Workers Party, and
the KGB - and from a back-room counterfeiting operation
being run by the officials under the guise of a Workers
Party printing press.

Gardai raided the printing operation in 1989 and found a
stack the size of a hay bale of newly printed and very high
quality punts. The printers fled, firstly to communist East
Germany and then to Copenhagen.

It was there, some time in the early Nineties that, it is
now believed, an international conspiracy was centred on
the production and distribution of counterfeit $100 bills.
Dubbed "super notes" they were of such high quality that
the US Treasury was forced, for the first time in decades,
to subtly change the design of the $100 bill - making the
face of President Benjamin Franklin a little chubbier than

The conspiracy involved members of the Official IRA/Workers
Party working in conjunction with Russian ex-KGB contacts,
intelligence officers whose previous role had been
supporting and financing communist parties around the world
as part of the Soviet Union's plan for global revolution.

By the mid-Nineties, however, this grand plan appeared to
have dissolved and Garland is now facing extradition to the
United States on charges that he was personally responsible
for carrying batches of counterfeit dollars to England on
the ferry to sell to ordinary criminals inBirmingham.

The US Federal indictment cites Garland as one of seven men
involved in the conspiracy. The indictment also names
Christopher John Corcoran, 57, from Dublin and Hugh Todd,
an Irish citizen living in South Africa, also known as FB
Rawling andPeter Keith Clark.

The others are a Russian national David Levin, also known
as David Batikovitch Batikian or Gediminas Gotautas, 39,
now serving a nine-year jail term after being convicted in
2003 of possessing the super notes, and three British men:
Terence "Terry" Silcock, 50, Mark Adderley, 47, and Alan
Jones, 48, of Birmingham also serving sentences for having
the notes.

The indictment states that the seven men made up to 30
trips to Ireland, Britain, Russia and elsewhere to obtain
the counterfeit currency, including over 15 trips made by
Silcock on the Holyhead to Dun Laoghaire ferry with bag
loads of counterfeit money.

All seven have leave to appeal their extradition. Garland,
back at home in Co Meath, can firstly appeal his
extradition through the courts in Dublin and this could
take years if he appeals up to the Supreme Court. There is
also a very poor record of success in extradition cases
against Irish citizens or even foreign nationals living in
the Republic.

Some 20 extradition applications by the United States
against people resident in Ireland have failed in
succession causing the Government to sign a new extradition
treaty with the US earlier this year. The new treaty with
the US could be tested first in the Garland case.

Evidence accumulated by the US Secret Service is likely to
be produced at extradition hearings either here or in the
UK courts. This will throw a light on an area of republican
paramilitarism rarely as yet fully examined in public.

It could show that while the bulk of the "Official"
republican movement that refused to join the "Provisional"
IRA and Sinn Fein moved away to form Democratic Left and
eventually join the Labour Party, a hard core remained in
the old Official IRA/Workers Party mode.

Jim Cusack


Stickie Wicket

16 October 2005 By Paul T Colgan

Sean Garland may be wanted by the United States government
for his alleged role in a plot to produce millions of
counterfeit "super dollars", but what we know about the
finances of the Workers' Party president would suggest a
businessman of more modest means.

Garland was arrested nine days ago as he stood poised to
deliver a broadside against the Provisional IRA and "US
imperialism'' at the party's annual conference in Belfast.

After a three-year investigation involving officials from
the CIA, FBI, Pentagon and State Department, the US
government is preparing to seek Garland's extradition.

He is currently on bail and living with a friend in
Downpatrick, Co Down.

Garland, who lives in Kentstown, Co Meath, is accused of
helping to mastermind a conspiracy to distribute millions
of forged US dollars.

American officials claim the plot originated in communist
North Korea as part of its "global criminal activities''.

The US justice department claimed last week that the
supernotes "were manufactured in the Democratic People's
Republic of Korea under the auspices of the government and
transported worldwide by North Korean individuals acting as
ostensible government officials."

It will be the first time the US has officially charged
North Korea with an illegal activity in court.

Garland denies the charges. The Workers' Party leader, who
is 71, has a long political history. He played a major role
in the ill-fated IRA border campaign in the late 1950s and
early 1960s, in which he led an attack on Brookeborough RUC
station in Co Fermanagh.

The resulting shoot-out saw the deaths of Sean South and
Fergal O'Hanlon. Garland was wounded.

He was also at the centre of the IRA split in the early
1970s that led to the formation of the Provisional

While the Workers' Party has dwindled through the years due
to splits and defections, Garland has remained steadfast in
his commitment to its cause. Although he has been accused
of accruing substantial amounts of counterfeit notes,
Garland seems to have little in the way of substantial
personal wealth.

According to the Companies Records Office, (CRO) he is a
registered director of at least two small companies -
Finndale Chemicals and a printing company, Repsol.

Abridged accounts for Finndale, which is based in
Ravensdale, Co Louth, shows it to have share capital of
€1,269, 738 and shareholders' funds of
€29,818.MarkMcLaughlin is the other director.

The directors of Repsol, which is based in Dublin's
Gardiner Place, are listed as Garland, Workers' Party
members Seamus Harrison, Seamus Lynch and Desmond O'Hagan,
and deceased Official IRA leader Cathal Goulding. The
company, based at the rear of the Workers' Party's
headquarters, produced pamphlets and books on, for example,
Lenin's thoughts on the Irish question, the IRA in the
1970s and James Connolly.

In 1983, gardai launched an investigation into the alleged
forgery of $5 notes at Repsol. Garland denies that any
counterfeit notes were ever found on Repsol properties.

However, during the celebrated libel battle between former
senior Workers' Party member Proinsias De Rossa and
Independent Newspapers, De Rossa claimed that a party
member, Brian Lynch, "disappeared off the face of the
earth'' once the investigation began.

Garland initially attracted US attention in relation to the
most recent allegations of dollar counterfeiting in his
capacity as director of GKG Communications International.

According to reports in the Washington Post in 2001, US
intelligence noted a 1997 meeting between Garland and the
bureau director of the International Liaison Department of
the Chinese Communist Party, Cao Xiaobing.

The paper said Cao's department was Beijing's official
channel for supporting foreign communist parties.

A US air force reconnaissance plane was alleged to have
picked up details of the meeting while monitoring
communications near the Chinese coast. A leaked National
Security Agency report stated that Garland and Cao had
discussed "unidentified business opportunities''.

The same top secret report said that Garland was "suspected
of being involved with counterfeiting US currency,
specifically the supernote, a high-quality counterfeit $100
bill." It noted that he was a director of GKG
Communications - even though the company is understood to
have been dissolved some time before then.

Garland claimed that the journalist who wrote the article,
Bill Gertz, was "a raving right wing anti-communist''. He
pointed out that the Washington Post was owned by the
Moonies, a cult known "for its anti-communism and its
organising of mass weddings of deluded people''.

It was not the first time that Garland had been linked to a
foreign communist superpower. He wrote to the Communist
Party of the Soviet Union in the 1980s in a bid to secure
funding for the Workers' Party which was then in dire
financial difficulties.

During his libel case, De Rossa said that Garland had
admitted seeking Soviet money to help run the party. De
Rossa claimed that it was brought to his attention at a
meeting of the Workers' Party's ard-chomhairle in 1992.

The US government is seeking a total of seven men in
connection with the alleged counterfeiting operation,
including three Irish citizens - Garland, Christopher John
Corcoran and Hugh Todd.


Daughter Of Frank Shortt 'Outraged'
2005-10-16 15:30:02+01

The daughter of Frank Shortt, who spent three years in jail
due to a wrongful conviction of allowing drugs to be sold
at his club, has said she is "outraged" at the €1.9m
compensation paid by the State to her father.

Speaking on RTE radio on Sunday, Sabrina Shortt, said: "I
am completely outraged, and I do take it as a personal
insult and regarding my father words cannot describe how
devastated at it."

Ms Shortt described a complete change in her father's
personality as a result of his experience in jail and of
his treatment by Ireland's legal system.

"He is a different person now. He is completely obsessed
with this case because he was so wronged, and he continues
to be wronged and he was wronged again on Wednesday 12
October," she said.

Ms Shortt described the harassment which her family
suffered when her father was found guilty of allowing drugs
to be sold at his pub in Inishowen, County Donegal.

"When I was sixteen my father was sent to prison. A lot of
my friends weren' t allowed to come to my house anymore. My
brothers and sisters got a lot of harassment at school,
both from teachers and from their friends - having papers
and things thrown at them on the bus," she said.

Ms Shortt said her mother had to take over the business,
while simultaneously campaigning to have Mr Shortt released
from prison. Each Sunday the family drove for four and a
half hours to Dublin, to visit Mr Shortt in jail in Dublin.

"We got one to two hours with my father, who spent the
entire time talking to my mother about getting him out of
prison, about dealing with finances at home, dealing with
bills, people to talk to, ministers to talk to. By the time
he had finished giving her the list of things to do, it was
time to go back again. That was the way it went, every
weekend," she said.

Despite her father being cleared of any wrongdoing, Ms
Shortt said the family were still "battling" to bring their
lives back to normality. "It isn't happening," she said.


Ruling Due On Total Smoking Ban

People in Northern Ireland will find out in the next 24
hours if there is to be a complete smoking ban in pubs and

Health Minister Shaun Woodward is due to make the
announcement on Monday.

The Department of Health in London is poised to reconsider
its plan for a partial ban, exempting premises not serving

It is believed that the policy switch in England will make
it more likely Mr Woodward will opt for a total ban.

The health minister is expected to follow the path of the
Irish Republic, which introduced a total ban on smoking in
the workplace in March 2004. Mr Woodward - himself an ex-
smoker - recently visited Dublin and New York to assess how
both cities have administered their bans.

Over the summer, he revealed the results of a public
consultation in Northern Ireland which showed that 91% of
those questioned were in favour of a total ban.

A ban in all government departments came into force at the
start of 2005.

However, it will be April 2007 before any legislation
announced this week will come into effect.

The Ulster Cancer Foundation has urged the minister not to
take the "soft option" of a partial ban.

"Shaun Woodward has been given a golden opportunity to
drastically improve the health of the people of Northern
Ireland," said Gerry McElwee, head of cancer prevention.

Mr McElwee warned against "fudged proposals" such as
exemptions for some pubs or separate smoking rooms.


While health campaigners are demanding a total ban,
publicans are hoping Mr Woodward will go for a partial ban.

Nicola Carruthers, chief executive of the Federation of the
Retail Licensed Trade, Northern Ireland, said: "What we
fear is a complete smoking ban. What we hope is that there
is still room for a small compromise."

If the government came forward with any measures which
meant people could still smoke somewhere on licensed
premises, she would be delighted, she said.

Dr Jane Wilde, director of the Institute of Public Health,
disputed claims that pubs in the Republic of Ireland had
closed and people had lost their jobs because of the ban.

She cited the annual report of the Office of Tobacco
Control in the Irish Republic released last week.

"It states there has been no adverse impact on the
hospitality sector. Bar retail sales have increased in
volume over the past three months in comparison with the
same period last year," she said.

"Numbers employed in this sector were also on the
increase," she said.

Many in Northern Ireland, particularly doctors and
politicians, have called for a universal ban.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/10/16 09:12:53 GMT


Irish Government Focuses On Immigrants Abroad

By Hannan Adely
The Journal News

Irish immigrants

• Since 1820, 4.6 million immigrants from Ireland have been
admitted as legal permanent residents into the United

• 1,010 Irish immigrants were admitted legally into the
country during fiscal year 2003.

• 34 million U.S. residents claim Irish ancestry. This
number is almost nine times the population of Ireland
itself (3.9 million).

• The Irish government estimates there are 20,000 to 25,000
Irish illegal immigrants in the United States.

Source: Census Bureau, Irish Consulate

(Original publication: October 14, 2005)

YONKERS — Getting a driver's license renewed, enrolling in
school, traveling home to visit a sick parent — all these
tasks have become increasingly difficult for illegal
immigrants since the United States clamped down on
immigration after Sept. 11.

Responding to these concerns, the Irish government has
stepped up efforts to help its citizens living in the
United States by increasing funds to immigrant centers and
by pushing for immigration change. The assistance is
urgently needed, leaders in the Irish community say.

"It's been one challenge after another — if not a banking
issue, then a driver's license issue, or a school or
medical issue. These are everyday problems for people who
are invested in their communities," said Siobhan Dennehy,
executive director of the Emerald Isle Immigration Center,
which has an office in Queens and in the Woodlawn section
of the Bronx.

The Emerald Isle Immigration Center, the Aisling Irish
Community Center in Yonkers and 11 other Irish immigration
centers in the United States will receive a combined
$915,000 in grant money from the Irish government in 2006.
The grants are a 40 percent increase over this year's
funding level.

The centers provide advice on immigration status,
documentation, job placement and social services.
Yesterday, staffers at the Emerald Isle's Woodlawn office
got calls from a few people who suspect they were duped in
a green-card scam. Another family wanted assistance filling
out citizenship paperwork.

A Yonkers woman visited the center to ask if her husband,
who still is waiting for his green card, should leave the
country. Immigration counselor Liam Boyle advised her
against it because, he said, travel could complicate the

"Even if he's married to an American citizen," Boyle said,
"the flag is raised."

Irish government officials have also tried to help
immigrants' causes on the political front. On Oct. 6, the
Irish Parliament passed a motion expressing concern at the
situation facing the illegal Irish in the United States and
its support for the Secure America and Orderly Immigration
Act introduced by Sens. Edward Kennedy, D-Mass., and John
McCain, R-Ariz.

If enacted, the legislation would allow illegal immigrants,
including Irish, to apply for temporary residency status
with a possible path to permanent residency.

Now that Ireland is experiencing an unprecedented economic
boom, government officials and citizens say, it is time to
give back to the immigrant communities who supported them
for so long by leaving home, finding work and sending money
back to their families.

"We should never forget the trauma of the past nor the
plight of those who remain in difficulty abroad," Irish
Foreign Minister Dermot Ahern said in a speech to
Parliament. Ahern has led efforts to support Ireland's
immigrant communities not only in the United States but
also in England and Australia.

The government also is motivated by pleas from its own
citizens in Ireland, who are upset because they are unable
to see family members in the United States. Since
immigration laws have become stricter, immigrants have
avoided traveling outside the country if they are not
permanent residents.

Dennehy said she appreciates the new public focus on the
plight of immigrants.

"People who are here illegally are talking to family
members about the problems they are having, who in turn are
talking to government officials," she said. "It has worked
its way to the top."

George Leahy, president of the Rockland County Ancient
Order of Hibernians, said the plight of Irish immigrants
always was a concern in Ireland, but a poor economy and
political turmoil usually dominated national discussions.

Now that Ireland's economy is booming and peace agreements
have been forged, the people are able to focus greater
attention to their family and friends in the United States.

"It's very difficult leaving the land you were born in,"
Leahy said. "I'm glad that we're seeing more of this, glad
that we're looking at immigration laws."


Case Dismissed

Ulster Judge makes legal history after giving his ruling in

By Sunday Life Reporter
16 October 2005

HISTORY has been made in an Ulster court after a judge
issued part of a ruling in Irish.

The judgment was handed down by Mr Justice Weatherup in a
judicial review brought by parents of two children
suspended from Meanscoil Feirste, the Irish language
secondary school, on Belfast's Falls Road.

It's believed to be the first time a High Court ruling - or
part of a ruling - has been given in Irish.

The children - identified only as 'Child C' and 'Child A' -
were suspended after school authorities found C "stole
school property".

C was accused of taking home a hurling ball, while A was
accused of covering up for her.

The suspensions infuriated the children's parents and they
sought a judicial review.

Mr Justice Weatherup heard how the drama over the stolen
hurling ball unfolded when Brendan O'Fiach, a teacher at
the school, asked C and a number of students to carry
sports equipment into a store.

Some time later, on his way home, Mr O'Fiaich saw C hitting
a ball against the wall of a shop.

There then followed a lengthy investigation into the
"stolen ball" incident, which eventually led to the

This prompted the judicial review by the parents, who
claimed the school had conducted an inadequate hearing, had
ignored its own disciplinary procedures, and had
insufficient reason to act against the children.

But Mr Justice Weatherup rejected their claims - and found
for the school.

However, he surprised the court by ending judgment in

He said: "Na fiorais, an fhianaise agus na hargointi ata
thaca leis an forais, ta siad gan bhunus. Mar sin, ta an
cas caite amach (There is no evidence to support this
claim, so I am dismissing it)."


October 16, 2005

Sizzle Over The Top

Michael Flatley's Celtic Tiger gets lost in American

By Colin Maclean, Edmonton Sun Freelance

Michael, we hardly knew ya. Michael Flatley's behemoth
dance spectacles have always been an uneasy union of Irish
blarney and Vegas glitz.

After founding and acrimoniously leaving Riverdance, the
famously difficult Flatley created a couple of flashy
entertainments he called Lord of the Dance and Feet of
Flames. The shows owed as much to Flatley's ego and stadium
rock shows as ethnic dance.

Flatley alighted last night at Rexall Place with his latest
extravaganza, Celtic Tiger, in which he appropriates the
familiar name given to the Irish economic miracle of recent

Flatley has not scrimped on the budget. There were 60
dancers - the ladies vibrant and buxom and men handsome and

There were three huge television screens, special effects,
pyrotechnics and, as Flatley told my colleague Eric Floren
on these pages, some $4.3 million in costumes. The show
takes 11 semi-trucks and five buses to move around.

And, of course, the brash Flatley himself floating equal
parts of stage charisma and world-class dancing ability. At
one point he dances with such ferocious energy that the
stage does indeed burst into flames. Well into his 40s, the
high kicks and acrobatics are gone but the feet still fly
in several show-stopping routines.

Celtic Tiger is really two shows. The first half is a
quasi-mystical view of Irish history, filled with energetic
production numbers that dazzle the senses and lift the

We start with Flatley and 25 or so of his cohort of Roman
soldiers in a rousing Roman dance and then move through
Viking raids, British imperialism and on to Bloody Sunday.
Those not familiar with Irish history may be confused by
the British tank which roars on stage and then startles the
audience by blasting away at them.

There was one protracted scene when an angel serenades a
field of dead soldiers after the Easter Uprising that was
cringe inducing. But generally the story was interesting
enough and the dancing spectacular.

The production boasts an Irish tenor who will have you
pining for the green hills of Donegal even if the closest
you ever got to Ireland was Saskatoon.

Then Celtic Tiger slams into a brick wall. In an obvious
effort to impress his American audience, Captain Flatley
appears in an airline uniform to fly us to the new world.

I know. I know. The traditional link between Ireland and
America is strong but we come expecting an evening of Irish
dance and we get the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders - or at
least a Vegas babe who performs a sizzling strip tease
right down to her skimpy stars-and-stripes underwear.

Then, in quick succession, a series of Latin, jive
flamenco, tap and hip-hop dancers strut their stuff. A
young lady right out of American Idol sings a pop song
about "how your love gives me freedom."

"What has that got to do with Irish dance," groused the
lady sitting next to me.

At one point, Flatley, who was brought up in Chicago,
morphs into a Yankee Doodle Dandy complete with Uncle Sam

The great moves and vague but interesting story of the
first act deteriorates into a Vegas variety show - a
kitschy cabaret of Irish-American jingoism including huge
portraits of such well-known American Irishmen as Pierce
Brosnan, Liam Neeson and Jack Kennedy. I still don't get
the fuzz guitar solo behind an overly familiar travelogue
of the great American heartland.

At the end, in a rather obvious bow to where he is,
Flatley's guitarist plays O Canada. He used his teeth as a
guitar pick.

The ensemble pulls it out in the last moments with some
breathtaking dancing. Once again the rows of dancers,
dressed in black tuxedos, thrillingly take to the stage
with the characteristic rigid upper bodies, flying feet and
precise taps.

There is much to like about Celtic Tiger and there are
moments that are spirited and thrilling. The thunderous
music by Ronan Hardiman is by turns glorious, haunting and

But, Michael Flatley should concentrate more on his feet of
fire and less on waving the flag.

- - -


MAIN EVENT: Celtic Tiger
NOTE PERFECT: Music by Ronan Hardiman
SOUR NOTE: Kitschy cabaret Irish-American jingoism
RATING: Four Suns out of five

To receive this news via email, click HERE.
No Message is necessary.
To October 2005 Index
To Index of Monthly Archives
Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?