Making a killing out of shifting property, the IRA way…

ALMOST 10 years after the IRA blew up the centre of Manchester in a huge lorry bomb, the city’s police have released previously-unseen images of the explosion, which you can watch here. Manchester Police say there is no realistic possibility of the bombers ever being prosecuted – a fact of life we’re well used to on this side of the Irish Sea. It’s likely the bombing was carried out by Tom ‘Slab’ Murphy’s South Armagh brigade, which was less heavily infiltrated than other IRA brigades. Slab, ironically, is suspected of making a killing out of property in Manchester…

  • Pete Baker

    Gonzo

    It’s probably worth highlighting the report that accompanies the BBC’s Inside Out programme from February 27 this year.

    In particular the Crown Prosecution Service’s decision not to bring charges, and what the editor of the Manchester Evening News has to say –

    Greater Manchester Police sent a report to the Crown Prosecution Service seeking advice on arresting a suspect involved in the bomb plot.

    Despite all their efforts the police were told there was insufficient evidence to mount a prosecution.

    The details were revealed by the Manchester Evening News, as Paul Horrocks, the newspaper’s Editor explains:

    “Our crime reporter came to me one morning and said ‘I’ve got this story to tell you,’ and it was the most amazing tale of how the police not only had a prime suspect but it was felt that there was compelling evidence that could put a person before a court.

    “And yet in a few days time the whole police incident room was to be closed down and the enquiry was to end.

    “Yet we also had information that special branch officers had monitored this individual in Manchester for many months after the blast…

    “And then he returned back to Ireland and had not been detained or arrested. Indeed there were no plans to arrest or detain him.”

    The newspaper had been given leaked documents of the police report – they eventually printed the story and named the suspect.

    The man issued a statement through his solicitor denying any involvement.

    So why does Horrocks think no one was arrested or charged?

    “I think the CPS clearly played a very big part of this in deciding that there was insufficient evidence – and there may have been perfectly justifiable legal reasons for that.

    “I also know that there were individuals within Greater Manchester Police who felt that there was sufficient evidence to mount a trial.

    “My own view is that they should have put that person on trial and let the evidence be tested by a court.”

    And John Stalker’s comments too –

    I think if the perpetrators had been arrested right away, it wouldn’t have been a problem but because the investigation went on for a long time – I think that it became more political.

    “You cannot, under any circumstances, ever separate politics and crime, particularly terrorist crime, in Northern Ireland affairs. The two are so inextricably linked to each other.”

  • To be honest the RA did a favour to Manchester, the Arndale Centre was a hole.

    You could compare it to Hitlers contribution to UK slum clearance.

  • heck

    I have a transcript of a call with agent 003.5 (only half the man his father was) planning the attack.

    I have been informed that the person on the other end was martin ingram.

    I challange him to a live debate to prove it was’nt him.

  • Belfast Gonzo

    Manchester – another prosecution ‘not in the public interest’.

  • Ingram

    Hi,

    Quote“You cannot, under any circumstances, ever separate politics and crime, particularly terrorist crime, in Northern Ireland affairs. The two are so inextricably linked to each other.”

    How very true and so very obvious.

    Heck,

    I accept your challenge mate because I am innocent.Any time any place.

    On the hand.

    Martin” Lucky” McGuinness will not and you and I know that.LOL

    Would have loved to see wee Charlie and Big Willie cleaning the tout comments of the wall though, I hear a photo is out in the wilds of Derry ? any chance . LOL

    Martin

  • spooky

    I also have a transcript with agent 00dear

    Who has told me that a handler called ‘Grantham’
    was privy to the plot to bomb Manchester.

    Eastenders have denied any knowledge of ‘Dirty Den’s involvement in the undercover plot to knock Coronation St off the top spot in the ratings war.

  • Ingram

    Gonzo,

    The public Interest argument is a real one and only time will tell on that.

    Martin

  • Mick Fealty

    Except it did injure more than 200 people in the process. Speaking to one American six years later: he was still incandescent over what it had distroyed of his own cultural business.

  • Ingram

    Mick,

    Compared to the loss of life In Northern Ireland during the troubles, Manchesteris but a faint glimmer on the Public Interest scale.

    Martin

  • Wat the Tyler

    OHH but Ingram, English deaths count for more than pitiful Northern Irish deaths…

  • Mick Fealty

    Martin, I should have addressed it to the person who shed no tears for the slum clearance of the Arnedale. It’s not customary to do with the tenants still in residence.

  • Pete Baker

    I’d add to that Mick, that while the Crown Prosecution Service were forced to make a decision on this when a prime suspect was identified by the Greater Manchester Police, here we have the Historical Cases Unit…

  • Ingram

    Mick,

    The arnedale was a slum, a relic of the sixties. Today it is competing well with the Trafford centre. Marks and Spencers is now a flag ship store, the old shop on Deansgate was tired and needed replacing.

    Minimal casualties but a large political fall out was the result of Manchester.

    The world and his dog knows who did it and like the leaked police made clear a number of years ago in the M.E.N the police were stopped from going after the ” Boys” WHY is that? LOL

    It was a vital cog in making those who needed to jump, Jump and ask how high do you want me to jump.

    The Charade of the peace is suddenly dawning on Republicans, the passage of time will educate further.

    The contrast with Loyalism is stark. They know they were Fecked over:

    Quote from Johnty Brown. “The ex-CID man recalls Haddock crying like a baby and confessing to the 1993 sectarian killing of Catholic woman Sharon McKenna.

    But Haddock was not prosecuted because he was a protected Branch agent.End

    Another not in the public interest. The place is littered with them, do the lot of them. Handlers and Touts.

    Martin

  • heck

    Given that I, as a republican, and all you unionists out there agree that this “public interest” lark is a load of old shite, can we all agree to withdraw support from the “forces of law and order” until we have a fair and transparent prosecution service.

    you don’t like the refusal to prosecute alleged touts and I don’t like it because it protects the puppet masters.

  • Pete Baker

    Firstly, heck.. you’re mistaken in your differentiation of the commenters so far.

    Secondly.. the way forward is not to “withdraw support from the ‘forces of law and order'”.. it’s to demand the rule of law – i.e. everyone equally amenable to the law.

    It’s a common misunderstanding, glad I could clear it up.

  • Rory

    Indeed politics and crime are difficult to separate, not only in the north-east of Ireland, but anywhere for that matter.

    “All great fortunes began with, at least a small crime” is a saying that has all heads nodding knowingly and one author whose character remarked that ” in….politics is the great crime of the rich against the poor” also strikes a chord.

    The “criminals” of the oppressed lay down their arms and agree to treaties with the greater criminals of the powerful. The powerful do not disarm and rarely respect their treaty commitments. Mr Ingrams has chosen which “criminals” he prefers to sidle up to in the hope that he will find his bread more richly buttered at their table.

    That is his right and his choice and we must not judge him on that. We would be wise however to understand that every word that drips from his richly buttered lips have been greased from his masters’ tables.

  • heck

    pete baker

    I basically agree with you and when I am convinced that state actors and the “security services” are “amenable to the law” I will support the “forces of law and order”.

    NOT BEFORE!!

  • Nic

    I see heck, so you’re basically saying you don’t recognize the police authority on like religous or ethnical grounds or whatever.
    Does that mean you don’t stop at checkpoints and show your (crown) driver’s licence and beg not to be be prosecuted after yer fifteen pints of a Friday night (paid for with the queen’s head on the currency) or do you just like expediently pretend to recognize their authority in order to actually like get on with your life?

  • Pete Baker

    heck

    “I basically agree with you”

    No. Fundamentally you do not.

    The difference is between those of us who believe that all those who commit criminal acts should be held accountable and those who believe that, once Sinn Féin agree, and only from that point onwards, all those who commit criminal acts may be held accountable.

  • páid

    Manchester was interesting.

    The locals (of whom it has to be said) are of largely Irish Catholic descent, hold very little bitterness. Loads have told me about the massive favour the IRA did, and how ironic that local firm Connell & Finnegan got the job to “finish off” the job. Thanks be to God, no-one was killed.

    Also. if my Manchester pub-mates are right (a big if), it was the first major success of the IRA tactic of putting semtex in medical drip tubes and running this through the standard fertiliser and icing sugar mix to get the temp very high very fast with all of the consequences that follow.

    It may be true that the realisation of this “miltary” advance made the BG more amenable to deal with SFIRA, what with a big London/Frankfurt battle on in the City of London at the time.

    And maybe my theory is bollocks.

  • heck

    I have often used the analogy of African Americans living in the south in the 1960’s to discuss northern Ireland. Imagine the black citizens in Neshoba county, Mississippi (scene of the movie “Mississippi Burning”) being asked to support the local police. Imaging them being told that they could not be involved in government until the supported the police. Imagine them being asked to support a prosecution service that was subject to “public interest” certificates from the state governor. Imagine the black citizens in Money Mississippi , scene of Emmett Till’s murder, being asked to support the judiciary after their (white) judge told an all white jury that he expected them to do their “white anglo saxon duty” and acquit Till’s white killers. (Remember the judge in Nor Iron who acquitted security forces of “shoot to kill” murders with similar offensive remarks.)

    Imagine, Nic, some white blogger who replied to their concerns with

    “see heck, so you’re basically saying you don’t recognize the police authority on like RACIAL or ethnical grounds or whatever.
    Does that mean you don’t stop at checkpoints and show your (WHITE) driver’s licence and beg not to be prosecuted after yer HITS OF CRACK of a Friday night WITH YO HO (paid for with A WHITE MAN’S head on the currency) or do you just like expediently pretend to recognize their authority in order to actually like get on with your life”

    would’nt you agree he would be seen as a racist bas****

    As in the American southern states support for the forces of “law and order” must be earned not demanded and I have said often what they have to do to earn my support. —-A transparent, international inquiry into collusion, shoot to kill and torture; evidence with 95% certainty that all who were involved are publicly identified and gone, and the level of government at which there was knowledge of collusion publicly identified; institutional police reform so that I know –with 95% certainty, such things can not happen again; policing by a locally accountable force, (no MI5 base for “political investigations; an open and transparent prosecution service willing to prosecute the masters as well as the subjects (no public interest shite!), and a reformed judiciary who sees it as one of their jobs to protect the citizen against the state.

    Now come on Nic and Pete Baker, is that really too much to ask for? Given what the nationalist community has gone through don’t you think the forces of “law and order” should earn my support—not have some politician demand it? Is it really that different from the American south 40 years ago.

  • Harry Flashman

    Pid

    It was really great wasn’t it? Yes 200 ordinary shoppers on a Saturday afternoon eviscerated with flying glass and I’m sure they were personally delighted that an Oirish firm got a chance to demolish the remnants.

    Lovely day’s work altogether, haha shure let’s all raise a pint to celebrate the boul’ bhoys, wasn’t it only a buncha English feckers who got sliced up?

    And wasn’t that just brilliant about the medical feed drips and the icing sugar, tell me do you wank yourself when you talk about that sort of stuff coz it sure as fuck sounds like you do.

    You twat.

    PS the Mancunians I talked to, you know ordinary hard working people who loved their town and don’t sit in pubs discussing the finer points of psychopathic terrorism, all were outraged by what was done to their town, absolutely stone cold furious, but then you don’t sound like you associate with normal people.

  • harpo

    ‘It may be true that the realisation of this “miltary” advance made the BG more amenable to deal with SFIRA,’

    Oh the old ‘we forced the Brits to the negotiating table where we then promptly surrendered’ explanation theory.

    I’m still not buying it.

    If the Brits were in such fear, why did the Provos accept much less than the standard demand of ‘a committment from HMG to British withdrawl from Ireland within the lifetime of a parliament’? Why did the Provos basically demand and settle for Sunningdale if they were in the drivers seat due to their new super weapons?

    It all smacks of the usual fantasies believed by fanatics that they have some super weapon in the pipeline that will be the final blow against the enemy.

    I still go with the war weariness theory. Mainstream Provisionalism had reached the end of what they would put up with. So they settled for what the Brits wanted all along. Power sharing within NI. The hardcore zealots of course refused to accept this end to the war and left and formed the RIRA.

    The whole peace process since then has been about Adams and McGuinness trying to portray what happened as a planned step in the magic Provisional plan. The plan that is still going to magically deliver a UI before a border poll can.

  • harpo

    ‘Now come on Nic and Pete Baker, is that really too much to ask for? Given what the nationalist community has gone through don’t you think the forces of “law and order” should earn my support’

    Heck:

    Given that there is nothing that the security forces could do to gain your support since you oppose the state, why do you make this demand?

    Be honest – so long as partition remains you are going to see any and all parts of the law and order and justice systems as the enemy.

    As for your example of the southern US, I’d say it is radically different siuation. Blacks were not hostile to the state in the US. They were not disloyal. They just wanted the same rights as white people. They wanted to be part of the country just like anyone else, and this was denied to them by racists. Racists who controlled the police.

    In NI on the other hand we had nationalists who were hostile to the state and republicans who were violently hostile to the state. They didn’t want rights within the state. They wanted the state destroyed. They were disloyal to the state. They wouldn’t join the forces of law and order.

    In the southern US blacks could reasonably expect the police to serve everyone on the same basis, since they weren’t being disloyal. In NI on the other hand nationalists in general didn’t want anything to do with the police, since the nationalists didn’t recognize the state that the police was part of. So I don’t see how any police force could ever satisfy you as a NI nationalist. If NI remains within the UK you will deem that police force to be British.

  • Mike

    harpo –

    “In the southern US blacks could reasonably expect the police to serve everyone on the same basis, since they weren’t being disloyal. In NI on the other hand nationalists in general didn’t want anything to do with the police, since the nationalists didn’t recognize the state that the police was part of.”

    And of sourse in the American south there wasn’t a minority among the African-American population waging a murder campaign against the police.

  • pid

    Bit strong Harry.

    On the day the bomb went off, myself and my family were, in fact, quite upset as we waited for news of my brother who worked in Shambles Square, close to where the bomb went off. My mother was sick with worry. In the politics of condemnation, I condemn.

    I do talk to lots of Mancunians; every day. After all I am one, born and bred.

    So I think you will understand that I do not wank over bomb preparations and do not in any way support bombers. I am not even a republican, as I have stated on Slugger before.

    However I still feel that the campaign by the IRA on English cities, demonstrated in Manchester, had a definite effect on the BG’s policy in NI.

    Many unionists would agree with me.

    If you don’t agree, fine.

    But try to desist from calling me a twat, from the safety of a chair behind a PC screen in Australia.

  • Turbo Paul

    It’s likely the bombing was carried out by Tom ‘Slab’ Murphy’s South Armagh brigade, which was less heavily infiltrated than other IRA brigades. Slab, ironically, is suspected of making a killing out of property in Manchester…

    Slab Murphy may well of ordered the Manchester bombing in his role as Irish Republican Supreme Military commander, but it has been his role as a peacetime General that has kept bombings to a minimum.

    General Murphy has kept order in the ranks by allowing his soldiers to engage in smuggling, then investing these ill-gotten gains in the legitimate world.
    This was santioned by the Brits,
    Curly Bonce Johnathon Powell advised Tony Blair to allow stood down IRA Soldiers to engage in criminality rather than they let “the Devil find work for idle hands”

    Property all over the UK mainland including Manchester, large scale building projects, owning shopping centres, Malls, retail parks, and a bulging european property portfolio that rivals the Duke of Westminister.

    New investments in China, links to China, via the Chinese living in Ireland.

    De-militarised Irish Republican businessmen now control an empire worth nearly $1 billion.

    How much will be used to try and secure electorial success next year North/South is something to consider.

    Slab to pay back-taxes and allowed to retire????????

  • “I should have addressed it to the person who shed no tears for the slum clearance of the Arnedale. It’s not customary to do with the tenants still in residence.”

    Just quoting my history lecturer Mick.
    after all every cloud has a silver lining.