Governments scuttled IRA initiatives?

Meanwhile Sinn Fein appear to be attempting to squeeze whatever political capital they can out of what the Irish government claims is a crisis entirely of their own making.

The Irish Republic’s top detectives, along with the Irish Defence Forces’ military intelligence unit known as G2, told Ahern that, in the aftermath of the political talks breaking down, a minority in the IRA leadership believed the British should have been taught a lesson. However, instead of bombing Britain, potentially a political disaster in the post-9/11 world, the movement chose instead to execute a plan that was two years in the making – to pull off the biggest cash theft ever.

The operation involved operatives in West Belfast and South Armagh:

Irish government officials have absolutely no doubt that this robbery was sanctioned at the highest levels of the IRA. They point to a meeting in early December at a hotel just over the border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic involving top Belfast IRA commanders and their counterparts in South Armagh. They were so paranoid about being under human and electronic surveillance that the gathering broke up the meeting in the hotel bar, walked into the car park and resumed discussions in several vehicles they had travelled in to the venue. Given that it was a combination of Belfast and South Armagh IRA members who robbed the bank, the authorities in Dublin now believe that this meeting gave the green light for the heist to go ahead.

  • Brian Boru

    The very fact that Bertie Aherne and Tony Blair continue to keep an open door to SF is evidence of non-confrontation, as is the pressure on the US to invite SF to Washington.
    SF have not been excluded.
    They have been asked by all the main players to confront the criminality within the IRA.
    All of their recent statements have failed to do this.
    And as such they are are “spectacularly” failing to face the stark realities of the post-Northern Ireland-Bank-Raid era

  • Roger W. Christ XVII

    …as is the pressure on the US to invite SF to Washington.

    Just saying it doesn’t make it true. The US administration recently snubbed Sinn Fein. The pressure is being applied on Washington not to invite Sinn Fein to the St Patrick’s Day bash. If Bush invited them anyway he would be undermining Ahern and his old war-pal Blair.

  • James

    This article discusses conclusions that were reached on Slugger in the middle of January, yet conveys them with the earnestness of the Pre-Tet Siagon press flack. Considering that the Sluggettes ain’t exactly a crew of rocket scientists, you’re indeed in deep, deep doo doo over there, Mick.

    Moreover, this guy is an amateur:

    “walked into the car park and resumed discussions in several vehicles they had travelled in to the venue”

    Any FBI task force would have the cars bugged, too. Brain drain and all, MI5 can’t be that far behind.

    Worse yet, the article attributes Sean O”Calliaghan, a guy who pops up with the odd, sporadic, regularity of that damned mufti.

    However, just to show you that I did read the article ……

    THE EXILE: Mick Fealty from Bangor, Co Down now lives in Dorset”

    Exile? ….. Bangor? …… Bangor?…….

    Write your Ma that we’re looking after you, cast off on a distant shore, and I’ll getcha a Victor Laszlo trenchcoat. It’s on the Christmas list. Trust me.

  • tebzz3

    oh my gawd, i have enjoyed the spiraling “honest its true” stories been spun out about this robbery but this on i love. “continued in several vehicles” sounds like the entire army council came close to been arrested for gay dogging in a pub carpark, was a well known ex premiership footballer seen in the area. shall a senior republian souce let it be known that they were only looking at badgers? have we stumbled on gay mobile speed dating ….for provos with a busy lifestyle, did mortar and kneecaps hit it off and go for a romantic pub lunch later, did slab and stakeknife go to see a movie together at the weekend.

    will any journo actually start earning his wages and stop printing rubbish handed out by the various police forces.

    will someone please print atory explaining why the police told the bank not to issue a reward, or why the bank didn’t just issue one anyway, it was after all their money that got nicked not Ordes.

    will the police issue identikit (or whatever) photos (photos!! sez Ian?) of the two phoney(?) coppers, the celtic supporter, the guy who was handed the bag of cash (and say were he was met), descriptins of the people seen acting supciously(or is the new word sinisterly) outside the bank and the vans license number

    howabout the police spectulating how during a 2-4 hour bank raid the robbers legged it minutes before the cops showed up, did you see a man wearing a balacava and carrying a crystal ball on the day of the robbery?