Sinn Fein backs courts for IRA kidnappers…

MARTIN McGuinness and Gerry Adams have said that the suspected IRA members on the run after admitting kidnapping a dissident republican should turn themselves in to the authorities for sentencing – a pretty dramatic statement from two of the most influential voices on republican opinion. A small step for Sinn Fein, but is there a giant leap happening in republicanism? The DUP will be asked to take note

  • Busty Brenda

    If they turn themselves in they could get to be as lucky as Martin was when they dropped his charges when Martin was in Crumlin road jail? Or maybe be as lucky as martin when he recieved only 6 months for not recognising the court (an ROI court) after being caught in a car full of explosives.

    Yeah turn your selves in guys and hopefull you’ll be as lucky as the ex-minister .

  • Pete Baker

    I don’t doubt it’s a small step, but it’s not that dramatic a statement. The four had already admitted their guilt.

    Adams and McGuinness were both asked the question by journalists, it wasn’t an opinion they freely offered [and McGuinness, in particular, shut down any subsequent discussion after his reply] and given the political situation there really wasn’t any other answer they could give without also accepting the blame for the subsequent fall-out.. which there would have been.

    The four were reported as AWOL on Friday after all.

    Avoid-the-blame.. for now..

  • Brian Boru

    I disagree I think it was very dramatic because it amounts to recognition of the Northern criminal justice system and a call for cooperation with it. Unprecedented I would say for the Provisional movement. Perhaps a portend that soon they will on their supporters to join the PSNI?

  • Belfast Gonzo

    I think Brian’s right. I think we can expect more, if it’s part of SF’s courtship of the DUP.

  • Pete Baker

    “if it’s part of SF’s courtship of the DUP”?


    Would that courtship include the four going AWOL in the first place?

    Don’t miss the point that the comments you’ve noted were in response to questions about that situation.

  • Henry94

    I certainly don’t think they should have said and it is going to be very unpopular with republicans.

  • elfinto


    You always see the cup as being half-empty with regard to Sinn Féin.

  • Pete Baker


    I’m looking at this as SF’s response to the situation they find themselves in.. not as an active courtship of another party.

    That seems a realistic view rather than overly pessimistic.. or overly optimistic.

  • heck

    they were wrong.

    There should be no cooperation of the NI justice system –police-prosecution service-courts until the issue of collusion is settled.

  • Bravo to Adams & McGuiness for calling a spade a spade. These men who kidnapped and beat that fella have nothing to offer republicanism.

  • ingram


    Quote”There should be no cooperation of the NI justice system –police-prosecution service-courts until the issue of collusion is settled.

    I would arrange a vist to the doctors mate, a big supply of Anti Depressants may be the answer cos it is going to get a lot worse over the next few months.


  • shamo

    This is an absolutely disgusting piece of quisling posturing from the leadership. Order people to do the dirty work, then crap on them when they’re caught. These guys were right not to sacrifice their personal liberty for a movement in tatters, with people resigning here, there and everywhere and careerists taking over the party. What a pathetic, craven insult in the week of Bobby Sands’s death. I’d love to hear what the party-line enthusiasts that post on this site regularly have to say. Ideological gymnastics anyone?

  • The Devil

    Relax everybody,
    These bastards were about to kill for Adams and McGuinness, so to do four years in jail with the promise of a new house and lump sum when they get out will be a doodle.

    Strange though there are some posters on here complaining that the Shinner leadership were wrong to drop these men in the shite, but the same posters denied that the 4 men were PIRA kidnappers/murderers in the 1st place when the news broke and they were caught in the act.

    So you can beat kidnapp and cut throats and it’s ok, just don’t dress up in a fancy uniform and march through Dublin in a peaceful fashion because that’s immflamatory

  • heck

    you may be right martin,

    but there are a lot of us who will not agree.

  • elfinto

    These guys pleaded guilty in court so no-one is ‘shitting on them’. Just giving them some free advice.

  • ingram


    Quote”but there are a lot of us who will not agree.

    I understand that BUT now that you have been sold the PUP you have to look after it. A PUP is not just for Christmas, but for life.


  • heck

    no martin,

    if you know anything about Irish history it is just for this generation.

    The flame just needs to be kept alive.


    PS were are the SF bloggers.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    heck: “There should be no cooperation of the NI justice system –police-prosecution service-courts until the issue of collusion is settled. ”


    As much as it hurts to have to crack my teeth and agree with Martin, I think the whole of NI could do with a large can of “That was then, this is now.” As much as I agree that the past is prologue, no progress is ever going to be made if we keep gurning on the past.

  • ingram


    quote”The flame just needs to be kept alive.

    Thay be so but this generation are beat and have been sold out, you know it and I know it and that is from a fellow Nationalist.


  • Joe Bloggs

    Now is it just me or does anyone else think that “Martin Ingram” is a pseudonom for someone very much still in the pay of his masters with the task of trying to destabilize Sinn Fein by sowing doubts about the leadership among the rank and file?

  • fair_deal

    Good that it was said if they mean it even better. Does it apply to other OTR’s?

  • shamo

    “free advice”.

    What conformist, stoop twaddle. Bobby Sands wouldn’t think much of criminalising republican soldiers.

  • elfinto

    What would he think of pleading guilty Shamo?

  • Heck

    What’s wrong?

  • Busty Brenda


    your cavary have arrived. LOL.

    Chris on his white horse to the rescue.

  • shamo

    What’s wrong, Chris, is that Adams et al are beginning to echo the Thatcherite mantra of “a crime is a crime is a crime”. These men have decided that they, like many republican soldiers before them, will not meekly serve their time. They did what they did under IRA orders, in a disciplined and correct way. Now they are abandoned by their leaders. But then, the unthinking acolytes of he who must be obeyed are unlikely to question this.

  • slug

    I would like to chime in here and welcome this statement by Martin McGuinness and Gerry Adams.

  • ingram


    Chris seems to have lost his voice.

    Shame that .LOL


  • Ingram

    Pity you wouldn’t lose yours, tired old spooks are so hard to listen too. Like a moth clinging to the light.


    When did Gerry say that “a crime is a crime is a crime”?

    These men have decided that they, like many republican soldiers before them, will not meekly serve their time

    I don’t know the ins and outs of the case so I am not going to comment on it.

    They did what they did under IRA orders, in a disciplined and correct way

    How do you know that?

    I will however echo the thoughts of Henry, this will not go down well with many Republicans.

    We do not have a proper Criminal Justice system yet in order for Republicans to have faith in it.

  • Busty Brenda

    Ingram pity you wouldn’t loose yours. Tired old spooks are hard to listen to, like a moth clinging to the light.

    LOL Very good Chris. A sense of humour and critical of the leadership. I never thought I’d see the day.

    Good one.

  • mark


    Should your headline not be ‘IRA’ kidnappers? (At the very least). No evidence was presented to establish those involved were members of an IRA. Mr Tohill himself disputes the incident being anything other than personal.

    Unless of course allegation gets to become fact through repetition despite opportunities to substantiate.

  • Doctor Who

    Totally welcome

    Will be viewed with scepticism from DUP and betrayl from other Republican extremists.

    Maybe some of you rep.. extremist contributors can clarify wether you think this is actually betrayl or in fact qualifies as collusin.

  • Fuiseog

    Fascinating to note the whole Provisional IRA fraud and deception upon the grass roots in this simple utterance.

    On the one hand you have the traditional hardline stance that since they pleaded guilty they have effectively rendered themselves isolated from the moral republican ideals of not recognising the courts.

    A hardline non-pragmatic stance so reminiscent of the late 1970’s when vols were battered senseless in the toilets of the crum yard for signing statements. In this sense Maguiness is very much articulating the traditional line and sternly admonishing these men for their lack of principles. What a total hypocrite !!!

    In his next breath he advocates these men surrender themselves to the despised British courts here. And indeed as on message republicans are no doubt aware his statement serves to condemn them to the brutal regime which reflects the worst abuses of the 1980’s against republicans by the sectarian prison service in Maghaberry 2006.

    Hence Maguiness’+ Adams treacherous genius is the ability to both appear hardline to the republican(?) faithful and compliant to their British/NIO paymasters at Stormount.

    While such nuances are very subtle … undoubtedly the party ‘faithful’ will have definitely caught its significance. “They pleaded guilty? Sure then they’ve broke the code so f*** them. Its their own fault when they get whats coming to them …”

    Time and again theAdams et al have used this tactic and play on words to deceive and defraud the Republican base to the extent the Belfast-centric leadership have bent the knee and in consenting to administer British rule in Ireland have become what they’ve always openly despised and ‘squeaky booted’ themselves into the annals of history as the despicable traitorous scum they are ….

    Is mise


  • Doctor Who


    If you think the Sinn Fein Leadership are scum, what hope is there for Unionists in tusting them.

    Furthermore it is this leadership who for thirty years supported the murder and removal of Unionists from this island, I don´t dare to think what you and your kind would do to us.

  • fuiseog

    Doctor Who

    You are reducing a clear issue of sovereignty and criminal theft to a mere narrow minded sectarian headcount.

    For some further reading and a “bargin book” try
    The Warrior Race by Lawrence James (Little Brown Press 2006) for numerous insights into the British war mentality and their colonising strategies (particularily in Ireland) down the centuries.

    Any objective or at least open minded read will show the unionists are as much manipulated as anyone else in this whole evil mess.

    Is mise

  • Doctor Who


    I read it quite recently, didn´t quite get all that from the narrative of the book.

    It is well versed the evils of the empire, as is the wonderful things it also brought. I´m gald you say that Unionists have also been manipulated, I couldn´t agree more, so then why to you see it necessary to murder us.

  • missfitz

    Hey Doc
    Maybe we could try it for next months slugger book club? And thanks for your kind words about my daughter on the other thread!

  • missfitz

    I went to your link, and may I ask if these concerns have been brought to the attention of the Independent Monitoring Board? Amnesty? Anyone?

    See, I live a law abiding life. I dont kill, I dont rob, and because of that I dont go to prison.

    Now, what are the chances that if you minded your beeswax, you wouldnt end up in the slammer?

    I am not advocating abuse of human rights, but if you do the crime, you must do the time.

  • Fuiseog

    Doctor Who

    “There are none so blind as those who will not see”

    Protestants as trusted (sometimes) lackeys of the British state foreign policy were/are fundamental to the security apparatus here in the 6 counties.

    They make up the vast majority of the civil service, the prison service, the home guard of the UDR/RIR the RUC/PSNI, the industrial infrastructure, the local governement structures all with the single aim of ensuring the interests of the colonial power are best served at any given time.

    The beauty of the British discourse is the persuasion of one section of a colony that they are superiour to another section. Be this superiority or distinction based on colour religion or caste its a sucessful well rehersed strategy employed to great effect in Iraq as we engage each other online here.

    Many Protestants in the North of Ireland, my own family included gleefully bought into this idea of supremacy, willingly and with blatent disregard towards the rights and humanity of a section of the people here – persued the evil policies and interests of their foreign direct rule ‘viceroyesque’ masters.

    While both seemingly(?)oblivious to their manipulation by the British and equally oblivious to their status as crucial components of the British war machine in Ireland … they pityfully publically, still even to this day, have the gall to lament the fact that Óghlaigh na H-Éireann, an organisation sworn to reclaim Irish sovereignty and dismantle the british war machine here by any means necessary, tried to kill them. Pathetic !!!

    Is mise

  • fuiseog


    On the one hand you seem to be expressing concern at the treatment and dare I say failed policies of the NIO prison service against political prisoners.

    Then you go on to say its partly their own fault they are being mistreated and abused to illustrate and compliment your own particular viewpoint oblivious to the fact that such laissez faire utterances actually condone this behaviour by blaming the victims of abuse.

    What has changed since the bad old days then? Are jail injustices okay in 2006? Isnt there a new dispensation? Moreover where is the professionalism of the jailers? What of the arbitrary prison polices? Is not the humanity of a society reflected in how they treat those incarcerated in their midst.

    Do you know that its the very act of loosing your liberty which is the punishment when sentenced Missfitz? Are you aware of the recent Sadistic beating of Sinn féiner bart Fisher by the ninja search crews in there about a month ago?

    Your post despite all the qualifying remarks, I feel, condones this type of behaviour and blames the prisoners, does not at anytime address the sectarian makeup of the prison service nor have you commented on my latter point about pro-test-ants in general as part of the war machine !!

    I reluctantly concede such abuse in jail is an occupational hazard for a militant republican yet does it make it right? Is it right Missfitz? Is it further right, to re-centre on the original point, that Adams et al who certainly know better afford that PIRA prisoners be subjected to such treatment? I as a republican think not but such is life …

    Taking a positive slant out of a miserable and often dire issue … for every prisoner abused and mistreated there are at least six or seven affected family members outside. All disillusioned and embittered and fertile ground for a continued struggle.

    Beir bua !!!

  • The armed struggle was successful in giving Martin McGuinness, Denis Donaldson,Gerry Adams, Freddy Scappaticci and other supporters of the Peace Process respectability. Slab Murphy is now, the comforting words of Gerry Adans notwithstanding, portrayed as a tax cheating criminal. He too will be abandoned “for strategic reasons”. Tohill’s attackers are to the Peaceniks what OIRA thugs were to SFWP. Sinn Fein are caught on the same dlemma SFWP were. Luckily, Pat Rasbbitte, P de Rossa etc offer a template for the smarter Sinn Fein social climbers to follow. The RIRA, CIRA etc prisoners are the losers, much like those who did not follow Dev in 1927. Nothing short of mass deaths inside wil bring them support. Andm given how they are marginalized, that last gambit will not work.

  • Dualta

    In all honesty, Adams and McGuinness have given these men solid advice.

    A life on the run must be crap at the best of times. They should take their oil, do their time with dignity and come out afterwards and get busy rebuilding their lives with their families.

    If Gerry’s and Martin’s advice doesn’t go down well with some within the Republican grass-roots then it shows that they do not understand the deep change in the body-politic (spelling?) which has occurred here.

    If these men were on a sanctioned operation then they should have accepted that being caught would put them in a different category from volunteers caught on operations pre-ceasefire.

    For the political protection of the Movement (which is officially on ceasefire) they would have to take responsiblity for what they were doing and try not to drag the Movement into it.

    I think I went to school with one of these men. Had I the opportunity I’d have given them the same advice, knuckle down, do your time wisely, educate yourselves and come out stronger.

    It’s just more lives down toilet.

  • Henry94


    Would it not be consistent then to advise all the OTRs to come back and face British justice.

  • ingram


    Gasket critical of the Sinn Fein Leadership, it does go to show that some Republicans can think on their own. LOL

    Lets see if we can provoke him into a Slab comment.LOL


  • Dualta


    Is it not right to draw a distinction between those who engaged in operations before the ceasefire and afterwards?

    If it is not, then should these men qualify for early release under the GFA?

  • Henry94


    I don’t think that is the issue here. If Sinn Fein want us to accept and consider ourselves subject to the justice system they should say so.

    It may well be good advice for those guys not to go on the run but that could have been conveyed to them without a demoralising public statement.

    The statement was not about the interests of the accused but the political interests of Sinn Fein. And that does not sit well with a lot of people.

    It’s only a short step to asking people to turn them in!

  • mickhall

    The NIO seem to be raising the height of the bar they demand the leadership of SF must jump by the day, Henry mentions it is but a short step to turning people in, indeed it is, but it will not be the likes of Mr Adams and M.M who actually do the dirty need, they will will delegate that dirty deed to some poor sap like Mark.

    At this very moment PC McBride is being shown all over Ireland and in the process reminding gullible or pliable Shinners that you to could look nice in a policeman’s uniform. What they are not reminded of is the ANC won their war and the uniform that Superintendent McBride wears is not that of the SA apartheid State.


  • What about the Colombia Three? Should they meekly do their time? And, if Colombia is morally worse than the 6 cos, is there a moral imperative to blow Colombian peelers/shops/statues/cantinas up? Gerry and friends should come clean on this. Ditto those still at large for killing Gerry McCabe etc etc.

  • Dualta


    If it is the case that those men are volunteers then should they not act in the best interests of their Movement?

    Did they act in the interests of the Movement or in their own interests? Did they discuss this with their comrades? If not, then do they not deserve a public rebuke?

    Surely if the Sinn Fein leadership are in hard-nosed negotiations they can’t allow their opponents to capitalise on incidents like this, which the DUP are apt to do.

    I reckon that the leadership of the PRM was caught by surprise by this and the public rebuke is a demonstration of their anger and a statement to these men that they’re on their own.

  • andy

    They already plead guily, I thought their lives would actually be easier if they turned themselves in. Does anyone know what kind of sentences were expected?

    I take Henry’s point about consistency, but this was a recent crime, after the GFA unlike the vast majority of the OTRs

  • Pat

    A timely lesson to those boys and girls who are out doing the dirty work for adams & Mc Guinness.

    You are clearly on your own when you get caught.

    The provo killers of Joseph O’Connor should bear this in mind. Some day you will be facing a court while your leaders organise their book deals.

  • Belfast Gonzo

    Like Mick, I also thought Robert McBride was here at this time for a purpose. Anyone had the opportunity to hear him?