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December 21, 2005

Chris Ward Granted Bail

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News about Ireland & the Irish

EX 12/21/05 Northern Bank Employee Granted Bail
BT 12/21/05 US Chef 'Was Set Up By Special Branch'
BT 12/21/05 Stormont Raid Slammed
BT 12/21/05 Adams Tells Blair To Rein In 'Securocrats'
BT 12/21/05 Spy Ring Case Not Destroy Faith In Policing
BT 12/21/05 Policing Body Chief Backs Orde Spy Stance
DI 12/21/05 Opin: Truth From British Wouldn't Go Amiss
DI 12/21/05 Opin: What Force Could Have Turned Him?
DI 12/21/05 Opin: Take Five: Be Guided By Principle
BT 12/21/05 Was There A Stormontgate?
SO 12/21/05 Morrison: A Long History Of Dirty Tricks?
BT 12/21/05 SF Turns Against Support For OTR Scheme
UT 12/21/05 Pressure Grows Over OTR Bill
BB 12/21/05 Fugitive Issue 'Needs Resolved'
BT 12/21/05 New Post-Diplock Court System On Way: Rooker
BT 12/21/05 Shankill Butcher Gets 6 Month Ban From Driving
BT 12/21/05 SF Councillor Not On Mayor's Christmas List
BT 12/21/05 Lisa Website Yields Clues In One Hour
TK 12/21/05 Sam Mcguire: GAA Legend & True Friend Of Kerry


Northern Bank Employee Granted Bail

An employee accused of the £26.5m (€39m) Northern Bank
robbery in Belfast was granted bail by a High Court judge

Lawyers representing Chris Ward, 24, from Poleglass, West
Belfast, challenged the decision of a Lower Court judge to
remand the bank worker in custody. Lord Justice Campbell
granted the application subject to a number of conditions.

He said Ward must observe a curfew, report to police twice
daily and surrender his passport.

Ward, who was one of the staff members taken hostage during
the heist last December, denied the charge when he appeared
before a magistrate in the city earlier this month.

Ward appeared via a video link from Maghaberry Prison.

The court heard he had recently requested a move to the
republican wing of the prison after fears for his safety.

Ward became the second man accused of the robbery, which
police have blamed on the IRA, after being questioned for
eight days, during which around 60 interviews were carried

Soon after the raid, when the vaults of the Northern's
headquarters were cleared, the bank worker gave a
television interview in which he spoke of his ordeal.

Gunmen took over his home and warned both and he and his
family would be killed if he did not co-operate, he said at
the time.

During the one-hour hearing today, Lord Justice Campbell
acknowledged the seriousness of the robbery but said Ward
had to be presumed innocent until proven guilty.

He said: "This case is one of circumstantial evidence and
it is not my task to comment on the strength or weakness of

Lord Justice Campbell told the court Ward had a clear
record, as did his parents, with whom he lives.

He also noted that he had been considered fit to have a
position of responsibility at the Northern Bank for which
he had worked since January 1999.

Before granting bail, the judge said Ward did not appear to
be at risk of interfering with witnesses.

Ward is due to reappear in court on January 4.


US Chef 'Was Set Up By Special Branch'

By Staff Reporter
21 December 2005

AN American chef wanted for questioning about the theft of
Special Branch files from Castlereagh PSNI holding centre
believes he was stitched up by Special Branch, it was
reported today.

Larry Zaitschek, who has lived in New York since returning
there shortly after the break-in, admitting knowing Denis
Donaldson but insisted he has never had any substantial
association with the Sinn Fein man who admitted to being a
British agent last week.

Police, who believe the IRA was behind the 2002 burglary,
have twice questioned Zaitschek, who is known as 'Larry the
Chef', once in Belfast soon afterwards and after he
returned to New York.

Zaitschek worked in the canteen at Castlereagh and was on
first-name terms with Special Branch and MI5 officers based

In an interview with Daily Ireland, the American said
Donaldson, who he first met in New York in the early 90s,
did not know that he was working at Castlereagh.

"Denis didn't know I was working in (Castlereagh) unless
Special Branch told him I was working there," he said.

"But I didn't do the break-in. So it's possible that
members of the security services did it, and then they did
set me up.

"But I had nothing to do with it, and I don't know who did.
I only know that I've been framed by it and my life has
been turned upside down as a result of it," he said.

The chef also told the newspaper that while he occasionally
met up with Sinn Fein man Donaldson after moving to Belfast
in 1995, they had no contact with each other after he began
working in the holding centre in 1998.

"Never once. None," he said.

Zaitschek admitted inviting Donaldson to his wedding to an
east Belfast woman but said there was no reply.

"When I first got there (Belfast), I had few friends. So it
was brief. I would have called Denis up for a drink, to say

"I had met his wife, just wanted to make friends.

"Eventually I fell out of touch with him completely. That
was well before I started working at Castlereagh.

"He didn't go to the wedding. He didn't even respond to the
invitation. That was the end of it," he added.

"The last I heard from Denis Donaldson was back in '97,
long before I started working in Castlereagh.

"And the next time I heard about him was in October 2002,
when I heard he was accused of Stormont," Zaitschek said.

Donaldson has been at the centre of a storm since admitting
working for the British security services. The revelation
came just days after charges against Donaldson, relating to
allegations of an IRA spy ring at Stormont, were dropped.


Stormont Raid Slammed

'Coup' bid set progress back three years: Kelly

By Noel McAdam, Political Correspondent
21 December 2005

THE attempted "coup d'etat" of Stormontgate had cost
Northern Ireland three years of political progress, Sinn
Fein has claimed.

Policing spokesman Gerry Kelly said the "political vacuum"
which had followed the collapse of the Assembly and
Executive had come from "somewhere deep in the British

"We could have had three to four years when the
institutions would have become more embedded and we would
have had political control over education, health and the
things that affect people in their daily lives," he said.

But he added the party did not seek an inquiry which would
put off political progress perhaps for another three to
five years.

The North Belfast Assembly member also said he would not
allow the revelation that former senior party administrator
Denis Donaldson had been a British spy for 20 years to
prevent him meeting Tony Blair or Secretary of State Peter

As the ramifications of the Stormontgate affair continued
to reverberate, Mr Kelly said it had been shown to be the
result of "political policing" at its worst.

"It is clear that the British state agencies who mounted
this operation knew that there was no value other than
political theatre to raid the Sinn Fein offices in
Stormont," he said.

"No documents or evidence were recovered in that raid. The
two discs removed were returned to the party within days.

"Hugh Orde is unable to justify the raid because it was
unjustifiable. It was politically motivated and intended to
cause maximum political damage, a result which was

North Belfast DUP MP Nigel Dodds said, however, that any
attempt by republicans to paint themselves as the victims
in the affair is "clearly ludicrous.

"The real victims are the hundreds of innocent people
forced to move or take security measures because
information about them fell into the wrong hands."

But he also said PSNI chief constable Sir Hugh Orde had
failed to explain why no one was to be prosecuted.

"The Chief Constable has made it clear that any wrongdoing
by an informant is not excusable and will be punished.

"If so the exposure of Donaldson's life as an informant
cannot have been reason enough to drop the charges," the
DUP secretary added.

" The chief's remarks only strengthen the case for a full
statement from government ministers about the whole


Adams Tells Blair To Rein In 'Securocrats'

By Noel McAdam, Political Correspondent
21 December 2005

GERRY Adams today told Tony Blair to "rein in" agencies
targeting Sinn Fein as the Government signalled it will
press ahead with the on-the-runs legislation.

As Mr Blair faced his Downing Street question session, his
spokesman said: "No one has come up with a better way of
handling the issue which has to be dealt with."

And a NIO source said there was no question of the
Government dropping the inclusion of security forces
personnel in the scheme after Sinn Fein withdrew its
support for the current legislation.

With the fallout continuing from the revelation that the
party's Stormont head of administration, Denis Donaldson,
was a British spy, PSNI chief constable Sir Hugh Orde made
clear he would continue to "run" informants.

Mr Adams, however, said the stated policy of the British
and Irish Governments was being "subverted" by government

"If Britain's war is over in this country, if British
policy in Ireland is to become totally peaceful, then the
British Prime Minister has to rein in the securocrats," Mr
Adams said.


Don't Let The Spy Ring Case Destroy Faith In Policing

By Linda McKee
21 December 2005

THE Policing Board has urged the PSNI and Government to
come clean about the Stormontgate affair in order to boost
public confidence in policing.

Board chairman Professor Des Rea said that following the
past week's discussions with the Secretary of State, the
Chief Constable and the Police Ombudsman, he was satisfied
that the PSNI and Chief Constable Hugh Orde had met their
legal responsibilities in their investigation into the
alleged spy ring at Stormont.

Sinn Fein's claims about the Stormontgate affair do not
square up in the light of the past week's revelations, he

He was speaking following a Policing Board meeting
yesterday that reviewed events in the days after charges
were withdrawn against the three people arrested over the
alleged spy ring.

"At today's meeting, board members agreed that the
situation should be kept under review, but the political
fall-out from this should not be allowed to undermine in
any way public confidence in policing or allow political
propaganda to overshadow the real facts of this case,"
Professor Rea told a press conference.

"In order to maximise public confidence in policing, board
members would urge those involved to put as much
information as possible in the public domain.

"Members also agreed that they would conduct further
meetings to explore how confidence in policing could be
further enhanced and to consider the wider arrangements for
accountability around this area of activity."

More than 1,000 people were warned that they were at risk
after police seized hundreds of pages of documents in west
Belfast as part of the Stormont investigation, the Policing
Board chairman said. It cost £35m to ensure their safety.

Board vice-chairman Denis Bradley said the documents
included names and addresses of people within the PSNI, the
Prison Service and judiciary, and referred to senior
political meetings that "would have been useful to another

"I think this has done enormous damage to Sinn Fein from
the point of view that I think this intelligence war has
gone on far too long," he said.

As a result of the changes in Special Branch and crime
operations overseen by the Policing Board since 2002,
intelligence-gathering in Northern Ireland is now subject
to an accountability and transparency that is almost unique
in Europe, he said.

"When Sinn Fein talk about political policing, I think Sinn
Fein should come in and talk to us and read the documents
and see what has been achieved in this field in the last
two or three years."


Policing Body Chief Backs Orde Spy Stance

Sinn Fein claims 'do not square up'

By Linda McKee
21 December 2005

THE chairman of the Policing Board has said he is satisfied
that the PSNI and Chief Constable Sir Hugh Orde met all
their legal responsibilities in their investigation into
the alleged spy ring at Stormont.

Professor Sir Desmond Rea said he had held discussions in
the past week with the Secretary of State, the Chief
Constable and the Police Ombudsman.

Sinn Fein's claims about the Stormontgate affair do not
square up in the light of the past week's revelations, he
said, following a Policing Board meeting yesterday that
reviewed events in the days after charges were withdrawn
against the three people arrested.

"At today's meeting, board members agreed that the
situation should be kept under review, but the political
fall-out from this should not be allowed to undermine in
any way public confidence in policing or allow political
propaganda to overshadow the real facts of this case,"
Professor Rea told a press conference.

"In order to maximise public confidence in policing, board
members would urge those involved to put as much
information as possible in the public domain.

"Members also agreed that they would conduct further
meetings to explore how confidence in policing could be
further enhanced and to consider the wider arrangements for
accountability around this area of activity."

More than 1,000 people were warned that they were at risk
after police seized hundreds of pages of documents in west
Belfast as part of the Stormont investigation, the Policing
Board chairman said.

It cost £35m to ensure their safety.

Board vice-chairman Denis Bradley said the documents
included names and addresses of people within the PSNI, the
Prison Service and judiciary and also referred to senior
political meetings that "would have been useful to another

"I think this has done enormous damage to Sinn Fein from
the point of view that I think this intelligence war has
gone on far too long," he said.

As a result of the changes in Special Branch and crime
operations overseen by the Policing Board since 2002,
intelligence gathering in Northern Ireland is now subject
to an accountability and transparency that is almost unique
in Europe, he said.

"When Sinn Fein talk about political policing, I think Sinn
Fein should come in and talk to us and read the documents
and see what has been achieved in this field in the last
two or three years."


EDITORIAL: Truth From British Wouldn't Go Amiss

Peter Hain tells us it's "not in the national interest" to
spell out the truth about Stormontgate and Spygate, the
spiralling crises engulfing the peace process.

Of course, Mr Hain's national interest and the national
interest of Daily Ireland readers are two different things
but surely common ground can be found in the democatic
interest. Or the interest of the peace process? Or even the
interest of building trust?

Sadly, Mr Hain has simply affirmed the old adage about
Britain that it has no friends, only interests.

And yet, he insists that building trust between the parties
and the governments is the only bedrock on which the
political institutions can be rebuilt. How to tally those
two views? Trust is a prequisite for peace but Britain
reserves the right to undermine trust by spying.

Truth is also the starting point for any meaningful bridge-
building process. Whatever about an enquiry into
Stormontgate and Spygate – and republicans should welcome
any such inquiry – some truth from the British wouldn't go
amiss. By throwing light on his spyring at Stormont –
during which undoubtedly thousands of documents were stolen
from Sinn Féin – Tony Blair could repair some of the damage
done since the institutions were pulled down by the PSNI
raid on the Stormont office of their agent in October 2002.
He should heed the call yesterday of foreign affairs
minister, Dermot Ahern, for great disclosure.

Whatever about Mr Blair and Mr Hain, and the latter looks
increasingly disinterested in the whole messy business of
being secretary of state in what one of his predecessors
branded "the dustbin of politics", Hugh Orde certainly has
questions to answer.

The PSNI chief constable appealed for Sinn Féin to join the
Policing Board and take responsibility for policing matters
at the very time that his officers were running an agent at
the very heart of the republican party. Setting aside the
breathtaking hypocrisy of that demand, does anyone really
think now that there is any possibility of Sinn Féin being
able to form a working relationship with Hugh Orde? Surely
not, unless, of course, Mr Orde can prove he didn't know
about Denis Donaldson's double role.

If that were the case, he could protest that he too was
played for a fool by Mr Donaldson – and in that respect he
won't be lost for company.

However, a failure to speak out would be to let this issue
fester even after the poisonous presence of Denis Donaldson
at the heart of Sinn Féin had been removed.

For its part, Sinn Féin should take the stance that
sunlight is the best antiseptic. They should encourage the
community and communities Denis Donaldson betrayed to talk
about their sense of hurt, outrage and anger. It's only
from giving voice to its sense of bewilderment that the
republican community can find its footing again.

Meanwhile, Denis Donaldson too must give chapter and verse
on his treachery if he is even to begin to atone for his
monumental betrayal of people who respected him, sheltered
him and even risked their lives for him.


Opin: Having Watched His Friend Bobby Sands Die An Agonising Death – For A Principle, What Force Could Have Turned Him?

Anne Cadwallader

It's a strange, disturbing and ultimately deeply
unpleasant sensation. Feeling pity for an individual whom
you previously grudgingly respected.

Denis was the kind of guy that republicans would happily
describe as "sound as a pound". Indeed.

We also now have an unexpected explanation for that
characteristic inscrutable smile.

In October 2002, when he was initially lifted for
questioning about "Stormontgate", I can remember people
commenting, with wry smiles, that they almost sympathised
with the hapless detectives detailed to interview him.

The general view was, that of all people, the task of
screwing any information out of Denis would be the most
thankless of all … How ironic.

On a personal level, it's hard not to try and find reasons
to feel desperately sorry for him. What on earth did they
have on him to turn him into an agent, an informer, the
lowest form of human life in the community from which he

Having watched his friend, Bobby Sands, die an agonising
death – so young, and so slowly – for a principle, what
force could possibly have turned him?

And why, having been turned once, did he not come forward –
at least after the 1994 IRA ceasefire or since – and admit
his role? There would then at least have been some
possibility, however slight, of a way back.

What untold agonies did he suffer over the next 20 years
and why?

Many people will feel nothing but contempt for him. But
surely, they cannot despise him more than he despises

All of a sudden, issues thrown up by Danny Morrison's
recent play, The Wrong Man, and other artistic oeuvres
concentrating on the nature of informing in Irish history,
take on a new and more immediate significance.

What is almost as interesting as the reasons why people
become informers, is the psychology of those who turn them.
What kind of human being can live with their conscience
after doing that to another?

As low as the informer is, he is at least partly also a
victim. The humanity of the police who work in the field
must be even more open to question.

To target someone at a particularly vulnerable moment in
their lives and knowingly make them even more vulnerable.
To use a combination of carrot and stick to force them to
put their own lives, and the future of their families at

To make them betray their oldest friends and comrades,
everything they believe in. To destroy their self-esteem.
To make them put the lives of their colleagues at risk. To
make them turn themselves inside out.

And ultimately, there can only be one end for an informer.
Either they are exposed by those they betray - or by the
very people who turned them into one in the first place.

Before the IRA ceasefire, that meant only one thing. A
bullet in the head on some lonely road along the border
after interrogation and certainly mental, if not physical,

Since the IRA ceasefire, it means to earn public contempt
from virtually anyone they have ever known or respected, if
not exile and separation from their family or risk of
physical harm from the many who will forever bear a grudge.

Denis would have known all that over the years he worked
for the police. How he continued to operate on a day-to-day
basis with that knowledge in the back of his head is beyond

Yes, the people who work with informers must have a very
special mindset.

Before the IRA ceasefire, when information thus gleaned
could, arguably, have saved lives, it's possible to see
some kind of explanation, if not justification, for using
spies and agents.

Since, however, when lives are no longer at risk, just
politics and game-playing, even that explanation has

Naturally, republicans will want to know how badly they
have been compromised. How much of what he knew was fed
into the British system? How did it influence the talks
leading up to the Good Friday Agreement and subsequent
negotiations over decommissioning?

Talk of an even more significant informer within republican
ranks has, for those pulling the strings in the Northern
Ireland Office, its own function. Whether the speculation
is true or not, the fears are morale-sapping and sow
discord and suspicion within the community.

When the police arrested Denis Donaldson and Ciarán Kearney
in October three years ago, they ripped their homes apart.
His daughter, Jane Donaldson, married to Ciarán Kearney,
was pregnant when the police raided her home, twice, before
Christmas 2002.

Having turned the house over, smashed the front door and
ripped up her floorboards, they left. Not before, however,
one police officer replaced an alarm clock under the floor
in her bedroom. Set to go off at 6 am the following
morning. Petty, nasty, vindictive, spiteful.

Whatever one's views on Denis Donaldson, his story is – at
least in part – also a desperately sad family tragedy.

It's difficult to say anything about that which would not
invade their privacy even further. They are suffering
enough already without anyone adding to it. We can only
imagine the horrors of how we ourselves would feel in his
wife, daughter and family's circumstances.

They are the truly innocent victims of this confusing and
unsavoury turn of events and most deserving of our thoughts
and prayers.

For my part, they have them.

Anne Cadwallader is a freelance journalist, broadcaster and
author of Holy Cross: The Untold Story published by the
Brehon Press.


Opin: TAKE FIVE: Be Guided By Principle

Tommy McKearney

There can be little doubt that the Donaldson affair has had
a significant impact on Sinn Féin. The gravity of the event
may be gauged from the fact that the party's president
chose to make the announcement himself in spite of what was
most likely a personally, difficult occasion for Gerry

While exposing this misguided individual's activities
naturally creates a media sensation (and deep and
undeserved hurt among his unsuspecting extended family),
the existence of a double agent should come as no surprise
to anyone.

British Intelligence is far from invincible but after a 25-
year conflict, it would be astonishing if MI5 didn't have
its sources within the insurgents. The pertinent question,
though, is what are the spooks up to this time.

British Intelligence, it should be said, is an old
institution predating parliamentary democracy on that
island by several centuries.

Notwithstanding the part it played in the 17th century
combating counter-reformation Catholicism, this agency has
a somewhat Jesuitical world view. Believing itself to be
answerable ultimately to the Crown rather than parliament
but nevertheless recognising the Royals' erratic nature,
the service takes upon itself responsibility for ensuring
that Britain is 'properly' governed. Properly governed,
that is, according to how the spies think it should be.
This burden of guarding the realm, if not the constitution,
once led sections of British Intelligence to consider
deposing former Labour prime minister Harold Wilson. They
imagined he was a Russian spy.

Not all their schemes are as 'off the wall' as that,

They may have failed to locate weapons of mass destruction
in Iraq but that doesn't mean their game-plan for Ireland
is not well considered, albeit unethical. For whatever
reason, they may wish to prevent local government in the
six counties, to undermine the current Sinn Féin leadership
or even to preserve a section of their agency budget. In
reality, we just don't know.

More productive than attempting to fathom British
Intelligence's mendacity, might be to consider how the
Bolsheviks behaved when learning that one of their leaders
was a Czarist secret policeman. They reasoned that it was
virtually impossible to prevent infiltration so while not
underestimating the threat from espionage, they advised
against being overwhelmed by it. Ensure that the party is
always guided by principle, they said, and not by
infatuation with personalities.

Admittedly, it is difficult to take such a dispassionate
view amid recent events but then, what better course is

Tommy McKearney is a former member of the IRA and now works
as an organiser for the Independent Workers' Union.


Was There A Stormontgate?

The Sinn Fein theory, that the spooks are out to destroy
the peace process, suffers from a fundamental flaw. Not
only is it rubbish, but the exact opposite is the truth,
says Ed Moloney

By Ed Moloney
21 December 2005

IT is difficult to say which of the two spectacles visible
in the wake of Denis Donaldson's outing as a long-term
British spy was the more depressing to watch: the sight of
the Sinn Fein leadership once more trotting out the
securocrat conspiracy theory - this time that it was MI5
and the PSNI Special Branch who had invented the Stormont
spy ring - or that of so many in the media again giving
this nonsense credibility.

Of the two the latter has to be the most disturbing. One
can hardly blame the Shinners for raising the securocrat
scare again. Blaming obdurate security force personnel for
shoring up unionist intransigence over power-sharing went
down a treat with their own people, provided a ready-made
excuse not to do things like decommissioning and sharpened
the sectarian divisions which fuelled their electoral rise.

Why drop a winning formula, especially when the media
happily swallowed it?

This time the Provo leadership had another reason to use
the ploy, and that was to cover their embarrassment over
the Donaldson revelation.

This is a development which, alongside Freddie
Scappaticci's exposure as a spy within the IRA's counter-
intelligence section, raises valid questions about who
really has been running and guiding the Provisional
movement in recent years: the British, the Adams-McGuinness
leadership, or the two together?

The Provos have good reasons to seek refuge behind
securocrat skirts, but by this stage of the game - post-
Northern Bank - the media should have learned to regard
everything said by Sinn Fein as a potential, if not
probable, lie.

Not only that, but in the light of the recent sensational
claims made by Messrs Adams and McGuinness it is surely
time to exercise a critical judgment and to assess the

Boiled down to essentials, what the Sinn Fein leadership is
saying amounts to this: in an attempt to prevent Sinn Fein
staying in government, and as part of an effort to kill off
the peace process, MI5 and the PSNI leadership conspired to
subvert the policies of their democratically elected Prime
Minister, Tony Blair by inventing a spy ring at Stormont,
thereby ensuring the collapse of the Executive.

If this is true, and the spooks had managed to get away
with it, then Stormontgate would represent one of the most
audacious anti-democratic plots in British history - one
that dwarfs the allegations of spookish dirty tricks
against Harold Wilson in the 1970s.

Common sense suggests that in such circumstances, amounting
to a grave constitutional crisis, Tony Blair would have to
move quickly to crush such dangerous dissent or see his
authority fatally eroded. But he hasn't. And that is
because he knows Adams and McGuinness are playing politics
and that what they say is so much eyewash.

The Sinn Fein conspiracy theory - that the spooks are out
to destroy the peace process - suffers from a more
fundamental flaw. Not only is it rubbish, but the exact
opposite is the truth. The peace process represents the
wildest fantasies of the security establishment come true
and the last thing the spooks want is to see it destroyed.

The peace process has enabled MI5 and the PSNI Special
Branch to achieve something that very few if any security
forces have ever accomplished: to see their enemy defanged
by its own leadership and led out of violent revolutionary
ways into constitutional politics and a world where the
principle of consent overrides the Armalite.

MI5 and the PSNI know they could never have done this
themselves, that they needed people like Gerry Adams and
Martin McGuinness to do it for them.

So why on earth would the spooks want to undermine them, to
frustrate them and place obstacles in their way as the
Provo leadership claim they have consistently done - most
recently with Stormontgate?

To have done so would have been to act fundamentally
against their own interests. It just wouldn't make sense.

Not only does the Sinn Fein conspiracy theory not hold
water, but the evidence about securocrat behaviour is
strongly to the contrary. Three episodes tell the story.

Not long after the IRA robbed the Northern Bank and the
Provos were under pressure, Martin McGuinness singled out a
civil servant in the Northern Ireland Office called Joe
Pilling as a perfect securocrat-type.

Calling him the 'Chief British Intelligence Officer',
Pilling was berated for deploring the prospect of a Sinn
Fein Assembly majority in the course of a talk in the
United States.

Joe Pilling was not a spook but the Permanent Secretary at
the NIO at the time the Good Friday Agreement was
negotiated. It was Pilling who strongly pushed to decouple
IRA decommissioning and the release of IRA prisoners
against the wishes of many unionists. He succeeded and
prisoners got out without the IRA giving up a single
bullet, but if he hadn't the peace process would have been
pitched into a real and possibly fatal crisis. Was this the
behaviour of a securocrat out to destroy the process?

In October 1996 Gerry Adams faced the greatest crisis in
his IRA career. An IRA Convention had been called in the
wake of the collapse of the IRA ceasefire and dissidents
were planning to overthrow him.

What did the RUC Special Branch do when they found out?
According to ex-Chief Superintendent Bill Lowry, successful
efforts were made to stop dissident delegates attending.
Adams survived by the skin of his teeth, as did the peace
process, but if those dissidents had got to the meeting it
might have been a different story.

Was this the behaviour of securocrats out to destroy the

In 1987, Gerry Adams opened secret contacts with then
Northern Ireland Secretary Tom King and the peace process
was under way. A year later British military intelligence
discovered, via UDA agent Brian Nelson, a plot to kill
Gerry Adams. They stepped in and Adams' life was saved, and
with it the peace process.

Was this the behaviour of securocrats out to destroy the

Ed Moloney is the author of 'A Secret History of the IRA'


A Long History Of Dirty Tricks?

Danny Morrison does some fascinating digging in the past of
Special Branch and recounts Peter Hain's nasty brush with
the South African Intelligence Services in the 1970's.

By Danny Morrison

Who's next, has been the line adopted by gloating
republican critics in the media and by Sinn Fein's
political opponents. As I look among them I'm thinking,
well, that one's probably in the Brits, that one is
definitely a mouthpiece for the Brits, and that smartass
former activist over there is probably an agent or a
lunatic, given that his sole objective in life is to
publicly undermine the republican struggle whereas Denis
Donaldson's objective was to do the same thing covertly.

I jest, of course. But wouldn't I be justified in thinking
that way? I mean, are agents only inside Sinn Fein or the
IRA? I think not.

There is an old saying that all's fair in love and war.
However, the latter part of that proverb applies only to
the extraordinary circumstances of war and conflict. In
peacetime different standards are meant to apply. The open
palm of a handshake is meant to show that you have no
concealed weapon.

From around about 1992 I was of the private view that the
republican leadership should consider a ceasefire but I was
in jail and had no idea how the debate could begin (without
debilitating the armed struggle) and how the transition
could be smoothly made given how badly ceasefires had
turned out in the past.

I was not a victim of subliminal suggestion by British
intelligence. Like many others, inside and outside the
jail, I reached that conclusion through my own reasoning
and mainly because there was a military stalemate that
conceivably could have lasted for twenty years or more
without necessarily improving the negotiating muscle of the
movement or the nationalist people. I was unaware – until
1993 when the Mayhew/Sinn Fein correspondence was revealed
– that tentative contacts had been made between republicans
and the British.

Since 1994 the peaceful moves of the Republican Movement
have often divided its opponents. Albert Reynolds read the
Sinn Fein position more accurately than most other leaders,
next to John Hume. In the run-up to all-party talks David
Trimble kept going on about Sinn Fein having "an exit
strategy" when in fact Sinn Fein's policy was one of
engagement, negotiation and eventual compromise.

The continued existence of the IRA and actual or perceived
IRA activity was used by opponents of the peace process to
try and justify their scepticism or mask their outright
opposition to a just settlement. For many reasons, but also
because of the actions and tardiness of its opponents, it
wasn't easy for the IRA to reach the position it did
earlier this year, announcing an end to armed struggle and
a commitment to peaceful means of struggle.

A political agreement has not replaced conflict and is not
within palpable reach. The only people to gain from this
situation are those opposed to agreement – and they are not
in the nationalist community.

The war, in fact, is still being fought, though on one side

From 1994 the frustration of the peace process by unionists
and the Major government was aimed at undermining the
leadership of Adams and McGuinness. The aim was to create a
split in republicanism, provoke a reduced/divided IRA into
a return to armed struggle and then smash it. Unfortunately
for them the bulk of the Republican Movement did not join
the Real IRA but stayed in the peace process.

There are those who doubt that British securocrats would
have brought down the power-sharing executive.

This is what Martin McGuinness said: "It is now time for
the British to answer questions about their agents, about
their agencies, and about their approach to the process."

This is what secretary of state Peter Hain had to say:

"If there were some giant political conspiracy, how would
it have been that this political conspiracy would have
robbed this office of its own information, of the most
sensitive kind - this just beggars belief, it would be a
complete fantasy."

In 1974 Peter Hain was arrested and charged with a London
bank robbery. He claimed that he had been set up by South
African intelligence agents because of his anti-Apartheid
work. His sceptics said that such a scenario beggared
belief. He was imprisoned, the case went to trial in 1976
and he was acquitted because what sounded like a complete
fantasy was actually true.

There are many things that seem complete fantasies and
among the 2,083 pages of the unpublished Stephens Report
into collusion there must be many things that beggar
belief, including the probability of a paper trail leading
to No 10 Downing Street.

What else once beggared belief when first mooted?

British agents re-organising, re-arming loyalists and
directing them to kill nationalists and republicans and the
solicitor Pat Finucane.

British involvement in the Dublin/Monaghan bombings.

British intelligence agents burning down the offices of the
Stephens' inquiry team.

British intelligence running an agent or agents inside the
IRA's internal security unit and directing its chief agent,
in order to aggrandize himself within the IRA, to select
for execution informers who had outlived their usefulness
to the Brits.

The Special Branch allowing its agents within the IRA to
maintain their cover by killing British soldiers and police

The same Special Branch allowing its informers within the
UVF and UDA to kill other loyalists and fellow Protestants.

The same Special Branch which is still operating within the

Does Denis Donaldson being at the heart of Stormontgate at
the prompting of his handlers really beggar belief?

Republican morale has been shaken by the actions of a
traitor. I do not know the detail of what damage Donaldson
did or his selfish motivation. Often financial reward is
not top of the list and most touts usually act chiefly out
of self-preservation (after being compromised), become
increasingly ensnared by each successive piece of
information they give, and then become perversely addicted
to the excitement of their secret life.

An informer only admits being ashamed after being caught;
then, in the words of Maxim Gorky, he begins living "the
life of a useless man".

Undoubtedly, the detail will emerge; Donaldson's story will
come out.

If Sinn Fein has got it wrong and Stormontgate was not a
malicious securocrat operation to bring down the
institutions then what of the other explanation that has
been proffered? Did the Public Prosecutions Office collapse
the Stormontgate trial to protect an agent or agents? And
to keep secret the embarrassing details of 'Operation
Torsion'? This operation allegedly involved the Special
Branch and MI5, months before the arrests of Donaldson and
others in October 2002, breaking into an IRA dump which
they had under surveillance, removing and photocopying
documents and then replacing these documents in the hope
that they would later catch senior IRA figures with them.

According to PSNI Chief Constable, the documents in
question contained the names and addresses of hundreds of
prison officers and PSNI officers. But they were not
informed at the time that it was the Special Branch who
handed their details back to the IRA!

No one in the media has asked the Chief Constable or Peter
Hain or Tony Blair if this is really what happened – even
though it, like the Brian Nelson affair and the burning of
Stephens' offices, beggars belief and sounds like a
complete fantasy.

Published in Daily Ireland, Wednesday 21 December 2005


SF Turns Against Support For OTR Scheme

All parties are now opposed to Bill

By Noel McAdam, Political Correspondent
21 December 2005

THE Government's controversial On The Runs scheme appeared
holed below the waterline today after Sinn Fein withdrew
support for the legislation.

But the Northern Ireland Office gave no indication its
current proposals will necessarily be withdrawn.

With the Northern Ireland Offences Bill due to go to report
stage in Parliament early in the New Year, all the
province's political parties are now opposed to the move
which would have allowed fugitives to return without facing
a trial.

But an NIO statement said: "There is no other vehicle for
dealing with the OTRs and Sinn Fein is deluding itself if
it thinks there is."

The Irish government indicated, however, it will not go
ahead with plans to grant Presidential pardons to
paramilitary fugitives if the British legislation fails to

DUP deputy leader Peter Robinson said there was no reason
for the Government to proceed with the "obnoxious and
obscene" legislation after spending months "using every
excuse that this most vile of bills must become law."

Ulster Unionist leader Sir Reg Empey said he did not want
"any more meddling" with the Bill, which his party is also
pledged to oppose in the House of Lords.

Sinn Fein said the current proposals did not match what
unionists have referred to as the "dirty and sordid deal"
with the Government at the Weston Park talks and at
Hillsborough two years later.

The party had privately attempted to convince the
Government the scheme should not cover members of the
security forces at recent meetings.

After further talks with Secretary of State Peter Hain
yesterday, Sinn Fein president Pat Doherty said: "We are
now calling for it to be rejected and we are withdrawing
from anything to do with it.'.

His party would be advising on-the-run republicans not to
seek registration under the legislation should it go
through, he added.

The proposals were thought to apply to around 150 people,
all wanted for crimes committed before the 1998 Good Friday
Agreement, who would have their cases heard by a special
tribunal and, if found guilty, they would then be freed on
licence without having to go to jail.

The guilty person would receive a special licence, however,
similar to that given to paramilitary prisoners released
under the Agreement guaranteeing they will remain free
unless they offend again.


Pressure Grows Over OTR Bill

Rank and file police officers today heightened pressure on
the Government to scrap plans for fugitive terrorist
killers to be allowed back into Northern Ireland without
facing jail.

By:Press Association

After Sinn Fein dramatically withdrew support for the so-
called on-the-runs legislation, because it would grant an
amnesty to police and soldiers involved in murder during
the Troubles, the Police Federation for Northern Ireland
found itself in unlikely agreement with republicans.

Chairman Irwin Montgomery urged Prime Minister Tony Blair
to take Sinn Fein at its word and abolish the Northern
Ireland (Offences) Bill currently going through Parliament.

He said: "This is an odious piece of legislation, utterly
without merit in principle or in execution.

"When the RUC Widows and Bereaved Parents met the Prime
Minister recently it was obvious that neither he nor the
Secretary of State, Peter Hain, were comfortable with the

"Now is the opportunity to do the right thing even if it is
for the wrong reason of Sinn Fein hypocrisy in not wanting
the legislation to apply to military or police personnel."

Ditching the controversial proposals would also preserve
the integrity of Chief Constable Sir Hugh Orde`s historic
case review process into unsolved murders, Mr Montgomery

"I urge this Government to do the decent thing and abandon
the Bill."

Rivals accused Sinn Fein of staging a humiliating climbdown
after it reversed its support for the plans.

The party claimed the legislation was too far removed from
an agreement with the Government at the Weston Park peace
talks in 2001 which would have allowed republicans who have
been on-the-run since the Troubles, to return home.

Under the legislation, the Government envisaged people who
have been living abroad to avoid arrest, or people
suspected of murders before the Good Friday Agreement,
applying to a certification commissioner to ensure they are
not sent to prison if they set foot in Northern Ireland.

The commissioner would then ask the police if the person
was suspected of crimes.

If an individual is, he or she would be issued with a
certificate guaranteeing they would not be arrested.

The certificate would also set in train a special tribunal,
with its own judge and prosecutors, who would examine the
offence the person is alleged to have committed.

If the person is found guilty, he or she will receive a
special licence similar to that given to paramilitary
prisoners released under the Good Friday Agreement
guaranteeing they will remain free unless they offend

Victims and human rights groups, the Conservatives, Liberal
Democrats, unionists, SDLP and the cross community Alliance
Party condemned the legislation for failing to compel those
accused of offences to face their victims during the
tribunal hearings.

Last week during the House of Commons committee stage,
Northern Ireland Office minister David Hanson conceded the
Government may have to amend the legislation.

But after it emerged the Bill will also cover members of
the security forces who colluded with loyalist
paramilitaries in murders during the Troubles, Sinn Fein
demanded the Government stick to what was agreed.

The party`s vice-president Pat Doherty said: "There are no
British ground forces on the run.

"It was sleight of hand and inexcusable to bring that
aspect into the legislation. It was not agreed at Weston
Park. And it is not acceptable and needs to be rejected."


Fugitive Issue 'Needs Resolved'

The issue of paramilitary "on-the-runs" has to be resolved,
Prime Minister Tony Blair has said.

It was not just Sinn Fein's concerns that needed to be
addressed, he said at his monthly news conference.

All NI political parties have said the controversial "on-
the-run" legislation should be scrapped.

However, the Northern Ireland Office has said there is no
other vehicle for dealing with the issue of paramilitary

Mr Blair said: "The reason we are doing on-the-runs is
perfectly simple.

"It is because it is difficult to justify a situation where
you have people who were convicted of serious crimes, but
as part of the Good Friday Agreement they committed those
crimes before April 1998 and they walk free.

"It is very difficult in those circumstances to say that
people who were not convicted, but may be charged if they
come back in the jurisdiction, should then go to prison for
the full term."

Mr Blair also said he believed it would be helpful to
reveal more facts about the collapse of the "Stormontgate
case", but was still taking legal advice on the correct way
to proceed.

The Ulster Unionist Party has said the government should
scrap the legislation and not agree to any Sinn Fein
proposed changes.

Sinn Fein has said it also wanted the bill scrapped after
saying that allowing anyone involved in Troubles-related
crime to avoid prison was not what they had agreed.

'Withdraw the legislation'

DUP deputy leader Peter Robinson said there was now no
reason for the government to proceed with the "obnoxious
and obscene" bill.

The plans cover up to 150 people wanted for crimes
committed before 1998.

They would have their cases heard by a special tribunal
and, if found guilty, would be freed on licence without
having to go to jail.

On Wednesday, the Police Federation for Northern Ireland
urged the prime minister to "take Sinn Fein at its word"
and withdraw the legislation.

Federation Chairman Irwin Montgomery said: "Now is the
opportunity to do the right thing - even if it is for the
wrong reason of Sinn Fein hypocrisy in not wanting the
legislation to apply to military or police personnel."

The proposed law would set up a two-stage process. First
someone who will be known as the certification officer will
decide if someone is eligible for the scheme.

This could be a paramilitary on-the-run, someone living in
Northern Ireland who is charged with an offence before 1998
or a member of the security forces accused of an offence
committed when they were combating terrorism.

The case would then go to a special tribunal, consisting of
a retired judge sitting without a jury. The tribunal would
have all the normal powers of the Crown Court but accused
would not have to appear for their trial.

If found guilty they would get a criminal record but would
be freed on licence. They would have to provide
fingerprints and DNA samples to be granted their licence.

The scheme will be temporary but a precise cut-off period
is not specified in the bill - instead its expiry is linked
to the lifetime of the chief constable's historic cases
review team, which is looking at unsolved murders during
the Troubles.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2005/12/21 13:38:50 GMT


New Post-Diplock Court System On Way: Rooker

By Brian Walker, London Editor
21 December 2005

A NEW court system to give protection to juries is being
planned for after the non-jury Diplock courts are scrapped,
the Minister of State Lord Rooker has told the Lords.

He was moving the Terrorism Northern Ireland Bill to extend
the non-jury courts to 2007, with an option on a final year
in 2008.

He added: "We are confident that UK counter-terrorism laws
will be sufficient to deal with lingering terrorism in
Northern Ireland after 2007."

In a written answer, Lord Rooker told the Ulster Unionist
Lord Laird that personal security for people under
"substantial or severe terrorist threat" had cost £45m over
the past five years.

The figure for the current year was £7.5m, dropping to an
estimated £3.8m next year.

In 2000 and 2001 £4.9m was spent each year, jumping to £11m
and £13m in 2002 and 2003 after the Castlereagh break-in
and the Stormontgate spy ring episode.

In the Lords chamber, Lord Laird used parliamentary
privilege for a second time to attack what he called "IRA
spies and sleepers in high places in Northern Ireland and
the Republic".

He said he had been vindicated by the Republic's Justice
Minister Michael McDowell for naming in the Dail last June
Frank Connolly, a senior journalist at the centre of a
public inquiry in Dublin.

The minister, added Lord Laird, had "outed and denounced"
Mr Connolly as "an IRA fellow traveller".

"I pointed out last June that he joined one of the IRA's
top bomb makers Padraig Wilson on a trip to Colombia in
June 2001 under a false passport."

Lord Laird also accused RTE of biased coverage.

In the light of the Stormontgate case he said: "Perhaps it
is time that two very senior RTE executives (whom he did
not name), should explain their extreme republican


Shankill Butcher Gets Six Month Ban From Driving

By Maureen Coleman
20 December 2005

A former member of the notorious Shankill Butchers gang was
yesterday disqualified from driving for six months and
fined a total of £1,150 for motoring offences.

Edward McIlwaine, from Woodvale Avenue off the Shankill
Road, was charged with having no test certificate, failing
to produce his driving licence, failing to produce an
insurance certificate and failing to produce a test

He was further charged with having no insurance and no
driving licence.

The alleged offences took place on October 16 last year at
the Ballysillan Road in the north of the city. McIlwaine
(52), did not appear in the dock but Belfast Magistrate's
Court was told that a medical record was produced stating
that the defendant was suffering from depression.

McIlwaine was fined £150 for having no test certificate,
£500 for having no insurance and a further £500 for having
no driving licence. He was also disqualified for six months
on both the no insurance and no driving licence charges, to
run concurrently. The failing to produce charges were
adjourned until January 9.

Between 1975 and 1977 McIlwaine was part of the loyalist
Shankill Butchers gang which carried out 19 murders. During
that time random Catholics were picked up at night and
murdered with butchers knives, cleavers and axes by the

McIlwaine, who was a former soldier, was sentenced to 15
years in prison in February 1979 for kidnapping, assault
and possession of weapons with intent to endanger life.


SF Councillor Not On Mayor's Christmas List

By Lisa Smyth
20 December 2005

A war of words has erupted after it emerged that Coleraine
Borough Council's only Sinn Fein councillor is to be
excluded from the mayor's Christmas reception.

At the request of DUP mayor Timothy Deans, Councillor Billy
Leonard is the only one of the 22 elected representatives
in Coleraine who has not been invited to tomorrow's festive

It has emerged that Councillor Dean's decision does not
have the backing of the deputy mayor of the borough, SDLP
Alderman Maura Hickey.

In a statement released last night, Alderman Hickey said:
"I have told the mayor that I disagree with his decision
and I hope that both the mayor and Councillor Leonard can
show generosity at this time, which I hope means that all
of us can celebrate the true spirit of Christmas which is
all about love, respect, and a genuine celebration of the
birth of Jesus."

Councillor Deans last night defended his decision, saying
that his party's policy states that the DUP "does not talk
to or engage with" members of Sinn Fein.

He said that by excluding Councillor Leonard from the
reception, which is funded by the borough's ratepayers, he
is carrying out the wishes of the electorate who voted for

He added: "When Mr Leonard was with the SDLP, he was
invited to council functions but as far as I am concerned,
I turned my back on him when he turned his back on
democracy and the ballot box."

However, councillor Leonard accused the DUP mayor of
abusing ratepayers' money by taking the controversial
decision to bar him from the Christmas party.

And he explained that he only became aware that he would
not be welcome at the Christmas celebrations when he
contacted the council offices to find out how many guests
he could bring to the annual event.

"This is a very informal and people centred event, it
should be inclusive and recognise everyone in the borough,
yet the mayor has ignored official advice to that effect,"
said Councillor Leonard.

"Republicans and nationalists pay their rates, make a major
contribution to life in the borough and the mayor with one
decision based on political ignorance, has excluded them.

"This is not just about me," added Councillor Leonard.


Lisa Website Yields Clues In One Hour

Internet messages give murdered girl's family new hope

By Debra Douglas
21 December 2005

THE family of murdered Lisa Dorrian said last night they
were hopeful that confidential messages left on their
website within hours of its launch could be possible leads
in the search for her body.

Within one hour of the family pleading with people to use a
confidential page on the website to leave information, one
woman left them a message which could be a vital clue.

And later in the day, another four messages were posted by
those who may hold the key to Lisa's whereabouts.

Speaking to the Belfast Telegraph last night, Lisa's sister
Joanne said: "The response so far has been brilliant and
we're really hopeful these messages will be a step forward.

"Two of the messages are quite specific so we're hoping
they will help us to find Lisa.

"I think the website has given those people with
information the right vehicle to tell it, they feel more
comfortable sharing it with us than with the police.

"It might even be that they thought it was something minor
and were scared of wasting police time but they feel they
can share it with us on the website," added Joanne.

By lunch time yesterday, the website had crashed with the
volume of people logging on to leave messages of support
but it was quickly upgraded to accommodate the steady
stream of visitors.

By last night, there were 3,088 hits on the site and more
than 200 messages of support had also been posted.

"I've been looking at all the messages and there are ones
from as far as Australia and America which is great,"
Joanne added.

"It is such a comfort to know there are so many people out
there who are thinking about us.

"We would like to thank everyone who has sent us messages
and the people who have given us their information.

"It has been such a boost for us and we're hoping there
will be plenty more messages to come."

The messages include one from Nichola McIlvenny, the cousin
of Craig McCausland who was murdered by the UVF in July.

In it she wrote: "I hope from the bottom of my heart that
you find Lisa soon. It is so hard to lose someone but we
found comfort in being able to bury Craig.

"We can't imagine how it must feel to not know where Lisa
is. I hope that you find her soon and hopefully this
website will provide you with the information you need to
find Lisa.

"All are love and support the McCausland family."

Other messages from around the world included one from
Tundra Clown, from Chicago.

She wrote: "No words of mine can offer comfort, but I
wanted you to know that the story of your daughter has not
gone without notice, and the thoughts and prayers of many
around the world are with you, your family, and Lisa."

Eithne, from Sydney, Australia, wrote: "May each day become
a little more bearable than the last. May you never forget
the love and laughter she brought to your lives.

"I hope that you get the information needed to bring Lisa

The website address is


A Legend In The GAA And A True Friend Of Kerry

By: Dave Hannigan

Kerry's love affair with the Sam Maguire cup is legendary
and this county has brought home the Holy Grail, either the
original version or "Baby Sam" a record 33 times. But who,
exactly, was Sam Maguire?

The GAA legend is profiled by journalist Dave Hannigan in a
remarkable new book, Giants of Cork Sport, and this is an
exclusive extract charting the life and times of Sam.

'The Irish heart refused to beat in foreign captive chains

It never would admit defeat while love and love remained.

With high resolve, with courage bold and zeal that could
not tire,

In life and death, in every breath, you were Irish Sam

- Sean Morrison, Gaelic Quarterly Review, September, 1936

AMONG the London team that arrived at the North Star Hotel
in Dublin in the early hours of Sunday morning, October 26,
1902 were a talented pair of Protestant brothers from West
Cork. Later that day at Jones's Road, Sam and John Maguire
could do little to prevent their side losing heavily to
double-winning Tipperary in the belated staging of the 1900
All-Ireland football final.

With London automatically qualifying each year to play the
winners of the home championship, Sam Maguire would go on
to play in the 1901 and 1903 deciders as well.

That he lost all three is neither here nor there, because
in many ways his playing career pales into insignificance
compared to what he did off the pitch.

When a group of Maguire's friends and colleagues
commissioned the Dublin firm of Hopkins & Hopkins to design
an enlarged replica of the Ardagh Chalice in his honour in
1928, they were commemorating much more than the great
sportsman they had known.

Having captained Hibernians of London in the latter two
All-Ireland finals, Maguire turned his attention to
administration, becoming such an astute chairman of the
board in London that, along with Liam McCarthy (whose
father Eoghan had been a noted wrestler and athlete in
Ballygarvan before emigrating), he is regarded as one of
the fathers of London GAA.

On an even more historic note, it was Maguire who
personally swore Michael Collins into the Irish Republican
Brotherhood (IRB) in 1909, and he remained a mentor to, and
a trusted agent for his fellow Corkonian for years after.

Born in Maulabracka, just outside Dunmanway in 1879, into a
family of seven children, Maguire was a brilliant young
scholar at the local Model School and the national school
at Ard-field.

He moved to London with his brothers after passing the
British Civil Service Exams.

Once in England, he threw himself into the various pan-
Irish activities available to the young emigrant. Although
he'd never togged out for Doheny's - his local club back
home - he played his part in Hibernians' annexing of four
consecutive London championships and juggled commitments to
the fledgling Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) with
membership of the Gaelic League and later the IRB.

Before long, Maguire discovered that his status at work in
the Post Office headquarters at Mount Pleasant near King's
Cross in London gave him unique access to British military
documents and he had no compunction about exploiting his
professional position to further the political causes

By intercepting sensitive government material en route
through the system, he rose through the ranks of the IRA.
In his fine book, "Off the Field and On", Brendan Fullam
uses an extract from a 1965 article in the Republican
magazine, An t"glach, to illustrate the extent of Maguire's
subterfuge. 'Maguire held the rank of Major General and was
Chief Intelligence Officer in Britain.

He was a born underground and enemy-resistance leader.

He broke through all barriers of the highest British
intelligence departments to get vital information of the
utmost value to the IRA at home and which often saved them
from falling into dangerous situations.

'He was not known to Scotland Yard although he worked under
their noses in the PO Sorting Office, Mount Pleasant,

Secret enquiries had been circulated to police stations and
intelligence agencies all over England to trace SM and Sam
was laughing with copies of them in his pocket as he went
complacently about his business.

' Fullam also quotes a poem written for Maguire by his
friend Peadar Kearney, the composer of Amhr·n na Bhfiann,
which pays tribute to his republicanism while painting a
less than pretty picture of his theatre of operations.
Proud to have hailed you friend, Long years ago!

"Amid the fog and fumes of London Town, An Empire's mart --
Astride the Sluggish Thames, Building on plundered clans,
Her dread renown! Strong in your deathless faith

Oh heart of gold! Your kindly, generous smile

Gave strength to all Who grasped your hand In that great
brotherhood: Waiting throughout the years for

Eire's call". An t"glach's colourful description of Maguire
seems appropriate. Daringly operating under the noses of
the British authorities, he was heavily involved in gun-
running, the planning of a campaign (later aborted) to
kidnap and take hostage 25 MPs and in organising the
assassination of Sir Henry Wilson in Belgravia in 1922.

He also rescued a hit squad in pursuit of Major Percival of
the Essex Regiment from certain arrest at Liverpool Street
Station in 1921 when he tipped them off about Scotland Yard
being on their trail.

According to some reports, Maguire was eventually captured
and imprisoned for running guns between London and Dublin,
a crime that of course meant immediate dismissal from the
civil service.

Regarded by many as the mainstay of the London GAA scene in
the first 20 years of the 20th century, he served as
chairman of the county board, delegate to the Annual
Congress and a trustee of Croke Park.

Following the end of his professional career in England, he
returned to Ireland and got a job in the fledgling civil

Having contracted tuberculosis, he returned to Dunmanway
and gave away his last fiver because he knew he would not
be leaving town again.

He died at the comparatively young age of 47 and is buried
beneath a Celtic Cross in the graveyard at St Mary's

Even though the original cup was replaced by a newer model
in 1988, Sam Maguire remains the name which dominates the
dreams of Gaelic footballers everywhere. His memory has
been further amplifyed by recent events.

On September 15th 2002, a statue of him sculpted by the
Derry artist Maurice Harron was unveiled in the new town
plaza in Dunmanway; Margaret Walsh has compiled a biography
of him; and local singer Charlie McCarthy wrote a song
about his life. No more than the recognition he deserves.

Giants of Cork Sport, compiled by Dave Hannigan and
published by the Evening Echo, is available in all good
Kerry booshops and retails for €25.

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