“as head of British intelligence, you would be derelict in your duty if you did not do everything in your power to assist that process…”

Via the Pensive Quill.  In this transcript of a discussion on Radio Free Éireann in New York, with John McDonagh (JM) and Martin Galvin (MG), veteran journalist Ed Moloney (EM) has some “stupid” questions for the leadership of Sinn Féin, British Intelligence Services, and the local media.  From the transcript EM: There’s a whole untold story of the peace process in the latter years of the IRA’s existence in relation to the influence of British intelligence – to what extent that was … Read more

“Unlike Gerry Adams & Mary Lou McDonald…”

In a follow-up to a previous post on his Broken Elbow blog, as noted here, Ed Moloney has “an answer to Gerry Adams, Mary Lou McDonald and other critics of the Boston archive“. Aside from myself and Anthony McIntyre there is only one other person who has read all of the interviews lodged in the Belfast Project oral history archive at Boston College and that is Judge William Young of the Federal District Court in Boston, Massachusetts. Judge Young got to read … Read more

“when a major political leader tells such an obvious falsehood about a defining part of his life…”

Also for the record, Ed Moloney has responded to Sinn Féin president Gerry Adams’ attack on the Boston College oral history project.  From Ed Moloney’s blog I don’t intend to spill a lot of ink responding to Gerry Adams’ recent statement taking yet another swipe at the motives of those who were interviewed and who did the interviewing for the Boston College oral history archive. That is because I have already answered a very similar charge from Mary Lou McDonald. … Read more

Secrets From Belfast: a definitive guide to the Troubles (troubled?) oral history project

Beth McMurtrie has published an extensive and well-researched article for The Chronicle of Higher Education. It examines how the Belfast Project oral history project at Boston College was established and how it has fallen apart in recent years following the PSNI’s request for access to the archive (two months after the British government had “given the college highly sensitive papers related to the disarmament process, to be kept locked away for 30 years”). What sets Beth’s article apart from much … Read more

Belfast Project (Boston College tapes): “an invitation to people to engage in deep moral reflection on the consequences of war and political violence”

The topic of the Belfast Project – an oral history of republican and loyalist paramilitaries that is archived in the Burns Library at Boston College – is one that Slugger O’Toole posters have been tracking for some time. Taking a step back from the latest developments to look at the project as a whole, and exploring beyond the normal 2-3 minute media soundbite, I spoke to Anthony McIntyre (who conducted many of the republican interviews) about the original purpose of … Read more

Death of Dolours Price – opens up possibility that her taped oral history will be published (or not)

Dolours Price – sister, mother, bomber, prisoner and a thorn in Gerry Adams’ side – died in her Malahide home on Wednesday night. The Guardian’s Ireland correspondent Henry McDonald writes: Price was involved in a car bombing at the Old Bailey in 1973, which injured more than 200 people and may have led to one person’s death of heart failure. The ex-IRA prisoner, who went on hunger strike with her sister Marian in the 1970s and was subjected to forcefeeding … Read more

“I believe the time is apposite to reveal what the interviewees did not disclose”

Eating dinner in the Burns Library of Boston College last night, I glanced around at the old manuscripts sitting on the shelves, knowing that the now infamous oral history tapes from the “Belfast Project” must be stored within a room or two of where were sitting. On Friday morning, researchers Ed Moloney and Anthony McIntyre were back in Belfast High Court seeking a judicial review of the “decision of the Police Service of Northern Ireland to request the United States … Read more

“…what that did was to make telling lies an excusable and acceptable tactic”

Ed Moloney traces Sinn Fein’s failure to meet its own targets in the race for the Aras to the attempt to re write history viz a viz Martin McGuinness’s career with the IRA. In particular he is puzzled as to why something that started as tactic has been elevated to the level of strategic template: I don’t know why the two men embarked on their lies in the first place. I could never see any advantage to it and so … Read more

PSNI’s media message/massage/pummelling

Last week Rusty noted how journalist Eammon MacDermott had property confiscated by the PSNI as part of an investigation into armed republican activity in Derry. While some may think the fact he was an ex-prisoner could have influenced the PSNI reaction, British policing has a long history of heavy handedness when it comes to freedom of the press in Ireland. Back in 1999 Ed Moloney faced gaol over refusing to pass on interview notes with William Stobie. Moloney won the … Read more