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Pól Ó Lorcáin
Paul Larkin

Chroniclers are privileged to enter where they list, to come and go through keyholes, to ride upon the wind, to overcome in their soarings up and down, all obstacles of distance, time and place.
Charles Dickens - Barnaby Rudge, Chapter The Ninth

Secret state papers expose Sinn Féin collusion myth as the spook lie it is - time to admit the truth

- time for certain journalists and other groups to admit they were duped.

They never completely go away you know - the Union Jack flies over Dublin

Before departing a former colonial possession, western colonial powers are always careful to leave behind “booby trap” spook groups and psyops stories in order to weaken, disorient and rupture radical forces in the new emerging nation. This makes perfect sense from a western perspective. The former colonists will often have commercial and strategic reasons for maintaining both a public and secret presence in their old colonial jewel. So this concept is not the product of your raving paranoid author. As we have seen with the recently exposed blanket surveillance of almost everyone on the planet operated by the North American regime, spook operations are a matter of colonial course. In the 1970s Colin Wallace’s job as a Press Liaison officer at British Army HQ near Belfast included a secret job description as disinformation officer.

Civilities achieved but the intelligence war continues

It seems clear to me that the hawks in the British establishment who were opposed to the Good Friday Agreement, began circulating “booby trap” stories in the late 1990s that had just that purpose of sowing confusion and internal strife amongst the native Irish. The targets were clear – Gerry Adams, Martin McGuinness and others in the Sinn Féin leadership were going to be undermined by a whispering campaign “proving” that they had in fact been British spies all along.

Remember the strong rumours that Martin McGuinness was the notorious STAKEKNIFE? Then that lost its surface noise and Danny Morrison was STAKEKNIFE for a while before Gerry Adams began to receive the full focus of this booby trap device.

I am not, never was, and never will be, a member of Sinn Féin, and when I first started hearing these and related spook stories, I just laughed at them. However, in my personal capacity as a socialist, and then in my professional life as a journalist, I do care about both having a healthy thriving left wing discourse in Ireland (amongst all progressive groups) and then also about high levels of exactitude in Irish journalism. I also care about the health of the Good Friday Agreement, which in my view has suffered serious slippage in deference to an NIO based security agenda.

Sinn Féin chose the wrong option in deciding to simply ignore these booby trap stories. That is a matter for that party, but I feel it led to a greater demoralisation amongst ár gclann as a whole than its leadership understood. The moment I decided to act on these stories was when I was in a bar in Derry and I overheard some men behind me swearing with God as their judge that the FRU had saved Gerry Adam’s life by doctoring the bullets in a UFF gun attack. This story is pure hokum – Adams was inches from death, with two bullets just missing his heart according to the surgeon who operated on him, but it has gained wide currency amongst certain groups in Ireland. A surprising number of journalists were taken in by this story as well.

Gerry Adams - they hate him because he outwitted them and survived to tell the tale

I’m not going to regurgitate all the other booby trap stories that are now also shown to be hogwash. Suffice to say that secret state papers - see here - - that have now been released by the UK government reveal amongst many other fascinating things that the Thatcher regime seriously discussed the outright banning of Sinn Féin and that same regime’s extreme discomfort at the way the party’s switch to highly successful electoral politics had wrongfooted their strategists.

My experience in Belfast was that the security forces hated the peace process

Of course, from an Irish republican perspective as well, It is perfectly legitimate to be opposed to the peace process. But to go on from that to seize upon a clearly spook generated set of myths and exploit those myths as part of your grounds for opposing the GFA is clearly untenable.

For it is now clear as daylight that in the same period that, according to the booby trap stories, Gerry Adams, Martin McGuinness and Danny Morrison were colluding with the Brits, those same Brits were trying to have them assassinated, arrested, censored and banned.

Go figure,

@Paul Larkin
Tír Chonaill
Mí na Nollag 2013


Excellent piece Pól.
by: Pat Mac Murphy (contact) - 28 Dec '13 - 15:27
Maith an fear, a chara....
by: karina breslin (contact) - 28 Dec '13 - 19:32
Maith sibh - thanks for taking the time to read it (was working most of yesterday so only seeing your comments now)

ar aghaidh linn

Paul Larkin
by: Pol (contact) - 29 Dec '13 - 07:12


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Title: Secret state papers expose Sinn Féin collusion myth as the spook lie it is - time to admit the truth
Date posted: 28 Dec '13 - 14:13
Filed under: General
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