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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

The end of Cic Saor as we know it - a valedictory note

And the fat man say I don't want to hear your voice
And the thin man say I don't want to hear your voice
And they're cursing me, and they won't let me be
And there's nothing to say, and there's nothing to do
Stop whispering. Start shouting.*

There is nothing in comparison to being embraced by your own people


In relative terms, my announcement in June - that I was stepping back from front-line political blogging on this Cic Saor site provoked a surprisingly strong reaction; with people asking how I could "walk away" just at the point when my arguments about the British state's collusion with pro-unionist death squads have gone mainstream. I even got mails from the USA asking me to reconsider. But I'm pressing ahead with my intention, and from this blog onwards Cic Saor will be renamed, at some point, and no longer contain references to spooks (state intelligence spies), state collusion with death squads or psyops propaganda and the apparent wholesale swallowing of same by sections of a gullible media. I will return to some of these themes and the characters they have thrown up, like the reprobates referred to below, but this will be as an element of my fiction writing.

To put it bluntly, I've done my job, played my historical role with regard to spook and collusion exposure and I've had enough. I need to get a more fully rounded cultural life and I explain exactly why in the closing paragraph. I apologise for the length of this blog, but the need for expansiveness in this leave taking will become obvious and I would appreciate it if as many readers as possible share its contents with others.

There were two reasons for initiating this blog in 2005, over a decade of high-end political blogging - though there have always been artistic or aesthetic contributions, especially at the start. The first imperative, as some long term Cic Saor readers will recall, was to break the silence regarding Britain's Dirty War in Ireland. Now that the notion of collusion is broadly accepted, it needs to be remembered how people like me, who initially tried to raise this issue, were smeared with the easy calumny of "Provo", or "conspiracy theorist".

(For the record I am an anarcho-syndicalist. I don't believe either in the idea of a workers state (which is effectively Sinn Féin's position), or that this projected state withers away as classic Marxism argues. Freedom, if it comes at all, comes from the ground upwards and is based on very localised initiatives. That said, I support a broad left front and believe that Sinn Féin should, and would be, an important part of that alliance. For another record (for those who haven't noticed), I am a Manchester Irish Roman Catholic.)

I should also stress that it is the determined activities of the families of collusion victims, in my view, who have done most to change the narrative towards the path of truth. Not me and certainly not the mainstream media. That in itself says a lot.

Eason initially refused to stock A Very British Jihad

The second imperative in beginning this blog was to give publicity for my book A Very British Jihad (2004) about that same Dirty War, bearing in mind that Eason booksellers initially refused to stock the book. This decision by Eason was important because they are the main book distributors in Ireland. It also meant that we were in the ridiculous situation where Eason were carrying "soft focus" books on loyalist assassins Billy Wright and Michael Stone but refusing to carry one of the most important books ever written on the Troubles by an award winning Irish journalist. Gradually, after enough people complained, Eason began stocking the book but by then AVBJ was well on the way to being sold out. It is now out of print, after a print run of 2500 books - a testimony to my work, this blog and then the readers who encouraged others to buy it, and to complain about not being able to buy it.


A Very British Jihad still sells several copies a month on Kindle and can be purchased here -

Those who are relatively new to Cic Saor, or who have come across this site by accident recently, might wonder at my temerity in boldly pronouncing the importance of the book and thereby claiming some credit at least for the final acceptance of the orchestrated state collusion argument, but that's exactly what I am doing.

A Very British Jihad laid out the whole State/Unionist violence paradigm from the late 1960s onwards when Ian Paisley and his Bible Belt followers set up the Ulster Protestant Volunteers (closely linked to the UVF) with the blessing of MI5 and RUC Special Branch. The RTÉ programme on collusion earlier this year (the first one since my 1995 film for RTÉ) broadly followed the same details and decade by decade trajectory as my book, despite going soft on the RUC especially with the extraordinary failure to ask a former senior Special Branch officer (Raymond White) about serial assassin and RUC agent Robin Jackson - the infamous and seemingly untouchable 'Jackal'.

But, as many readers have noted, AVBJ is not simply a book about collusion. It goes much further and analyses the wider political context in which modern day collusion in Ireland started - Cold War global paranoia politics (USA versus the then Soviet Union), closely linked to the arms trade and suppression of left wing uprisings the world over. Any reader who ever doubted the spectre of right wing, partly psyops based, military interventions such as the one we suffered in slow motion here in Ireland, or say in Spain, Greece or Argentina, need only look at the hysterical reaction on the part of some British military figures to Jeremy Corbyn's election as leader of the Labour Party; or say the threats made to Catalonia from within the Spanish military as that country edges closer to independence.

RUC agent and 'King Rat', Billy Wright - Not a religious Jihad? Somebody should have told Billy Wright that.

As far as I'm aware, no other book on collusion has looked at it from a left wing international perspective, explaining how it fits into a global reactionary pattern. But of course, the book also stressed the specific localised nature of death squad operations here. What happened in the North of Ireland in the late 1960s (as radical movements for change erupted all over the world), was that the virulently anti-Irish covert security agencies of the British state gave a carte blanch of terror to the most sectarian (i.e. anti-Catholic) element of Northern Irish society - the ruthless killers loyal to an archaic Crown and Bible who were (ironically) usually grouped around a range of drinking dens, or within the police/army auxiliaries across the North's Bible Belt. It was this wholly stupid and reckless policy that made it a religious Jihad. The DUP and its support base has always played an important role in that policy, particularly in places like Portadown, Lurgan and Ballymena. No other book about the Troubles has asked such serious questions of the DUP. No other book has revealed so much about loyalist killer and British agent Brian Nelson and his activities in linking loyalist death squads with Britain's covert agencies. No other book has delved quite so intimately into the mind set and Modus Operandi (not to mention the drug dealing) of RUC agent Billy Wright and his gang - the so called "Rat Pack"; the same gang that murdered my friend and colleague Martin O'Hagan because he got too close to their secrets.

All my assertions were backed up by evidence taken from court papers, secret intelligence files and of course Brian Nelson's diary. The book was also the product of my own research as a journalist working for BBC Northern Ireland and the films I made for its Spotlight programme, and also the film I made for RTÉ about the Dublin and Monaghan bombs - the horrific conclusion to the 1974 coup that happened here in Ireland. A Very British Jihad is now used as a source text for legal teams investigating collusion cases. It is a matter of record that, on the basis of my evidence in the book, I was interviewed by Judge Henry Barron (now deceased) and his team with regard to the Dublin and Monaghan bombs and also by officers from the Ombudsman's Office in the North on several occasions and in several different regards. Specific elements from the book have also been picked up developed right up to the present day, such as my work on what came to be known as 'the Glenanne Gang'.

The Miami Showband Massacre - also victims of the Glenanne Gang

On page 290 of A Very British Jihad, for example, I revealed facts about RUC man and UVF member James Mitchell whose farm lay near the Armagh village of Glenanne - hence the name of the gang. These facts about Mitchell had either been deliberately ignored or never researched by the media, missed or forgotten. However, anyone who bothered to spend some time, like I did in the early 2000s, looking properly at this police officer's "career" would have soon discovered that in the 1970s, he was effectively the Mid Ulster UVF's quartermaster-in-chief, with the full knowledge and cooperation of the state's covert agencies. Here is the key passage on Mitchell:

On November 23rd 1973, UDR instructor (Billy) Hanna was charged with possessing ammunition and two six volt batteries wired together. Between November 1979 and November 1980, nine men from the Armagh area were charged with similar paramilitary offences one of whom was James Mitchell. Reserve RUC man James Mitchell was convicted of possession of a pistol, armed robbery and hijacking in November 1979. This is the very same Mitchell who is named in John Weir's famous collusion statement. All nine men were active members of the UVF and at least half of them were members of the security forces, including the UDR. One UDR member David Jameson, who received a four year prison term, came from a prominent UVF family in Portadown. There was, in other words, a substantial UDR and RUC resource for bomb and gun attacks on Irish nationalist targets.

Source A Very British Jihad Page 290 (see also Page 312 on mistakes in Barron Report into the Dublin and Monaghan bombs.)


(Paul O’Connor of the Pat Finucane Centre introduces me as an author and expert on collusion at this meeting in 2003.)

The significance of the passage quoted above lies in the fact that RUC man Mitchell is clearly shown to be a highly active, indeed pro-active, and willing member of the UVF and not just for the purpose of storing armaments. Moreover, my book showed that the security forces were well aware that his farm was used as an RV (rendezvous) and/or logistics point for atrocities such as the Miami Showband massacre and the Dublin and Monaghan bombs to name but a few. Readers of AVBJ understood the significance of what I was saying but the media completely ignored it until my old friend Anne Cadwallader contacted me about James Mitchell some seven years after AVBJ was published. By this stage, Anne was working as a case officer for the Pat Finucane Centre and she picked up on the significance of my reference to Mitchell's UVF convictions. In January 2011 Anne wrote to me on behalf of PFC director Paul O'Connor asking for exact details of Mitchell's court convictions and saying that the PFC "were not aware of it" and that it was "really important", which of course it is. Though her initial inquiry was on behalf of Paul O'Connor, Anne was to subsequently use and vastly develop this information as part of her outstanding book Lethal Allies, which focusses heavily on the Glenanne Gang. I am delighted that I was able to help in whatever small way I could.

Former Uachtarán na hÉireann (President of Ireland now deceased) Patrick Hillery presents the author with the European Journalist of the Year Award, 1997,

In short, and taking all of the above into account A Very British Jihad has made its mark. Likewise, this Cic Saor blog has helped to assert the integrity of my journalism and circumvent the censorship of an Irish Commentariat (in trying to ignore me and my work to death) , which laughably calls itself "liberal". As the Glaswegian author James Kelman famously put it -

These bastards think they own the language. They already own the courts. They own everything. They want to block your stories, and they will, if you let them.


There remains one issue before I close this political blog forever. I refer to it because it's an issue that I have also successfully dealt with and exposed, even whilst no longer working as a full time journalist. Let the following serve as the rest of the explanation for my now "walking away".

Lowly FRU spooks Peter Keeley and Ian Hurst
(A macabre spook version of Laurel and Hardy, elevated by the media to 'intelligence officers' and 'whistle-blowers'.)

An extremely important event in the collusion narrative happened this week with the quashing of convictions against several people (who have already served substantial jail time) previously convicted of conspiring to defraud a drinks factory in Derry (St Brendan's Liqueur Company). Look at this report here -

Appeal judges pronounced the convictions unsafe, broadly because of the failure of the prosecution to reveal the presence of an informer and possible provocateur within the ranks of the alleged conspirators at the original trial in October 2000. That spy, who has a long career as a provocateur, is none other than Peter Keeley, or to give him his Sunday Times invented name "Kevin Fulton". The appeal judges were clear that had Keeley's role been revealed from the start there may not even have been an attempt to prosecute:

If disclosed, it would have raised issues around entrapment which could have given rise to a real possibility that the prosecution would have been stayed or relevant evidence excluded.

It's important to note that Keeley, shall we say, involved himself with the above accused in the late 1990s. The very period when he first appeared on the scene as a spook "Stakeknife" rentaquote. In fact not long before his spook sidekick Ian Hurst (the pair are inextricably linked) began telling a nodding media that he "read a Stakeknife file" in 1987 prior to the murder in Belfast of pensioner Francisco Notarantonio in October 1987. The media did not let the fact that Hurst was not even in Ireland in the run up to Francisco's murder and that he has never served with the FRU in Belfast get in the way of a good spook story. Quite how did Hurst remonstrate with Belfast FRU people over Francisco, as he claims in his Stakeknife book, when by his own subsequent admission he was either in Belize, or the UK at the time?

Hurst compounded these straightforward lies by producing a long list of Stakeknife victims, at least half of which could not possibly be true. The media and even certain rights groups promptly published this list as a proven fact in 2003 and an expanded version in 2004.

It is now clear, and partly because of this blog, that it was not just some alleged defrauders from Derry that were entrapped in the late 90s and early 2000s. We were in the midst of a surreal spook version of 'Emperor’s New Clothes' fable, where an ex brothel keeper (Keeley) and glorified debt collector (Hurst) easily convinced members of the Commentariat that they wore dazzling raiments and could spin pure bullshit into the golden copy (stories) they so desperately wanted to be true. The perpetrators of collusion thereby became collusion’s chief investigators. I take my hat off to the UK’s Star Chamber (MI5 and the Security Department of the NIO) for effecting such a brilliant ‘reverse pass’. Or what is called 'disruption' in the spook trade.

Peter Keeley/Kevin Fulton - the "Unsung Hero" of the media

Anyone who needs further proof of the symbiotic relationship between Keeley and Hurst need look no further than Keeley's own 2006 book on his so called "war" in which he styles himself an "unsung hero" (itself an insult). Ian Hurst wrote the foreword to the book in which he refers to meeting Keeley in 1999:

Foreword by Martin Ingram (Ian Hurst) states on XIII,

Initially, I have to admit to feeling sceptical about meeting this murderer. Even today, we continue to disagree about the politics of Northern Ireland. That said, Fulton has never lied to me. He has never exaggerated or diminished his own role in any terrorist operations. I am also happy to record that I like Kevin Fulton as an individual

So Hurst is telling us in 2006 that he knew everything about Keeley and his “terrorist operations”. You will search the internet in vain for any description by Hurst of Keeley’s terrorist campaign but the "murderer" tag used by Hurst is presumably a reference to Keeley's apparently self-confessed murder of republican activist Eoin Morley in Newry in April 1990. Hurst tells us he knows about many more. How do we know? Only the police and the courts can establish these grave facts beyond reasonable doubt. The coterie (dwindling it must be said) of journalists who regularly quote this pair of charlatans never ask them. Or if they do, they don't publish the answers.

FRU hitman Ian Hurst (circled) in Enniskillen - according to the media this didn't happen

But then, who did Hurst himself target for entrapment and murder? Subterfuge and assassination was the FRU's s stock in trade. Or are we supposed to pretend that Hurst was not involved in this whilst he served in Enniskillen/West Det FRU in the late 1980s? This also involved illegal cross border work. No targets ever mentioned. No superiors named as committing specific crimes, yet as recently as the Smithwick Tribunal (December 2013) the mainstream media was describing both Hurst and Keeley as "whistle-blowers" when in fact their "revelations" have overwhelmingly and demonstrably concerned Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness.

The legal confirmation this week that Keeley was once more involved as a police spy, this time in a fraud case, and that he was almost certainly engaged in entrapment sets the seal on the media's failure to report this 'disinformation duo' either with the requisite rigour or full accuracy. Keeley even admits in his "hero" book above that he was involved in the St Brendan's "caper". It was that very admission which eventually led to the quashing of the convictions as far as I understand it.


The final conclusion of the 20 million Euro Smithwick Tribunal effectively rests on the word of this same provocateur Peter Keeley, who amongst many other things, told Smithwick of his part in yet another sting operation involving the sale of a million Viagra tablets supposedly stolen by the IRA from the Pfizer drugs company. It gets worse. Head of security at Pfizer Ireland Conor Hanlon told the tribunal in April 2012 that Pfizer had never lost a million tablets through theft and informed the Tribunal that only the component powder was made in Ireland and it was shipped to either Germany or France for final production processes. Literally and metaphorically a cock and bull story.

"Whistle-blowers"? Intelligence Officers? The media has cried time without number. Ye Gods. It's a macabre Laurel and Hardy show. A Swiftian farce where corrupt Lilliputs can reduce the media to a gibbering laughingstock by simply humming their Stakeknife mantra and putting their hand out for more money. Money being the prime motivation for both of them.

Cic Saor readers will understand that I want to finally cleanse myself of this Dreck and devote the rest of my life to uplifting and edifying things like literature, poetry, the philosophy of ordinary language and decent things that reassert human dignity. I've been submitting myself to this torture since 1988 in fairness. Some of you will be aware that I mainly work as a literary translator and that my first novel will be published next year. Such work takes me far away from the sleazy, sordid world inhabited by the likes of Hurst and Keeley.

I will take some time now to decide what to do with this blog site. I’m not certain what its final form will be, but I envisage some kind of forum for cultural and literary discourse.

Míle buíochas do chách as a bheith I mo chomhluadar ar an dturas seo - Many thanks to all of you for accompanying me on this journey. There are a small number of people I should specifically and personally thank for their invaluable help all down the Cic Saor years (one of them a lawyer). But it's unwise to name them. They know who they are.

The author and his favourite poet - the Bard of Salford, John Cooper Clarke.

Time for poetry, art and the praise of human empathy. Time to get clean and to write many more books.

Paul Larkin
Gaoth Dobhair
Mí Deireadh Fomhair 2015

* Though the lyrics are entirely apposite, Radiohead have no connection whatsoever with this blog. I understand that the word used in the first line was "fat" but that this was regarded by corporates as too un-PC for the USA!
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Title: The end of Cic Saor as we know it - a valedictory note
Date posted: 12 Oct '15 - 12:31
Filed under: General
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