“Informers should be seen not just in a military frame but also in a propaganda one”

Jim Gibney argues that whatever comes out about informers like Roy McShane, the newly revived institutions are where the Republican struggle now lies:

The all-Ireland power-sharing administration which is functioning today at Stormont is a far cry from a one-party unionist state where military, economic and political power was in the hands of unionists only. That administration owes its origins to the combined pressures and expectations of republicans and nationalists. These expectations are the motor for further change ultimately leading to a united Ireland.

But, he also notes that:

“Revealing informers is about trying to demoralise republicans and nationalists; trying to place doubt in their minds that the struggle they are involved in, which has achieved so much change, is not worth the sacrifice involved.”

Much of this territory is amenable to suggestion or indeed as Gibney says fantasy. Its outworkings are real enough though . The impact of the cluster of informers that have been outed over the last few years several of whom had a critical role in internal security of the IRA would seem having an impact on the morale of some former volunteers.

One observer at Brendan Hughes’ funeral noted an unusual distance between Gerry Adams and some of the prominent IRA men who attended. If that’s anyway accurate, then it would seem the tactic is beginning to bite.

The question is, if the St Andrew’s Agreement was supposed to be a ‘fresh start’, why are the British continuing to apply pressure in this way? The answer may lie in the clandestine activities of those ‘unknowns’ in South Armagh who were behind the killing of Paul Quinn.

  • “noted an unusual distance between Gerry Adams and some of the prominent IRA men who attended. If that’s anyway accurate, then it would seem the tactic is beginning to bite.”

    Mick, I understood such a tactic has been ‘biting’ from at least 1987 and maybe much earlier.

    Is Gibney’s ‘all-Ireland power sharing administration’ propaganda intended to ‘pacify’ the PRM grassroots?

  • Shore Road Resident

    Priceless. How can he argue that informers are a distraction from the success of the institutions when it is patently obvious that informers were critical in delivering Sinn Fein up to those institutions?
    It is embarrassing to which a grown man intellectually debase himself like this.

  • Shore Road Resident

    I mean “to watch a grown man intellectually debase himself like this.”

    Question for republicans on this site: I’ll assume that nobody with half a brain swallows party guff like this whole. So when you read a Gibney column, do you feel angry at being taken for a fool? If not, why not?

  • Elvis Parker

    Havent laughed so much he ages! Does he believe this? Of course not – it nags away at him and all the others (including the late Dark) that they have been stitiched up like kippers and wasted their lives.
    Loved the ‘The all-Ireland power-sharing administration which is functioning today at Stormont’ When did we abolish the Dail then!!

  • The Truth

    If this does nothing else but frees the england-worshipping slave-minded unionists, then begin the liberation.

  • wild turkey

    ‘Sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast. ‘

    Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking Glass

  • Ulsters my homeland

    Jim Gibney
    [i]”Informers, agents and spies have been a part of Irish society for as long as the British government have been occupying Ireland.”[/i]

    lol, it was the Pope who gave the whole island (Scotia) to King Henry II, even before it was united. If it wasn’t for the influx of the Popish Normans, the Scots in the island wouldn’t have been forced to leave for Caledonia and the peasant Hiberni’s wouldn’t have thought in claiming the whole island for themselves or renamed it Ireland and themselves as Irish.

    The Irish owe everything, even their own identity to a papal supporting English king, lol.

  • Dec

    Question for republicans on this site: I’ll assume that nobody with half a brain swallows party guff like this whole. So when you read a Gibney column, do you feel angry at being taken for a fool? If not, why not?

    Singling out Gibney’s column as being a particular target of ire is missing the point somewhat. My anger’s directed at Napoleon, not Squealer.

  • URQUHART

    Glibney is getting worse. What is the Irish News at?

    Although it’s fun to watch the start of the process where the informer issue is used to convince the grass roots on why it’s ok to wind up the organisation.

  • Fuiseog

    In light of recent exposures of long suspected Unionist corruption and nest feathering that you might expect to have been grist to the mill of JG’s column this week, the tone and content of this article reminds me how the exploitative conditioning and grooming of republican touts and agents by MI5 et al is horribly mirrored by the distasteful conditioning and grooming of republicans and nationalists by the kindly but sinisterly sleezy Mr Gibney.

    I’m thinking the next ‘occupational hazard’ revelation will be soon and given Jim’s latest offering as he well knows it will involve someone not too far from his sphere of influence … meanwhile in a classically twisted piece of distorted thinking Jim asks us to believe these Touts ringing MI5 to be ‘extracted’ do so, not for reasons of self preservation as their lives are in peril … no no, no, its purely to undermine true republicans and their revolutionary endeavours as they administer British rule from Stormount !!

    Roy Mc Shane by all accounts publicly despised and denigrated the recently exposed touts such as Denis D. Anyone with any degree of insight into the human condition might have wondered about such over compensation – Might not then we ask, given the juicy, potent events of the past week or so and this interesting topic of choice … what’s eating Gilbert Gibney and Co?

    Fuiseog

  • Elvis Parker

    Of course Jim will be aware that the evil Brits used all sorts of tricks to subvert the pure Catholic Irish – not least making them gay!

  • Rapunsel

    Embarassing stuff from Mr Gibney as usual. Surely the Irish News can get a proper republican commentator rather than such an obvious propagandist with the overblown rhetoric. Worst thing about this column is the insinuation that informing and spying was all one sided. Did the IRA not engage in it too?

  • joe reid

    It is fair to suggest that every article in the Irish News by Jim Gibney reads like fiction.I would be of the opinion that following the Mc Shane spy story- the Shinners sold this story to their brain dead followers as proof that Adams is a threat to British occupation so the Brits surrounded him with MI5 agents.The new crop of Sinn Fein activists believe anything the leadership say.

  • Twinbrook

    ulsters my homeland…

    whatever you do don`t read Real Irish history, the likes of Foster, Bew, Jackson and even Kee because “your” view of history pulled straight from the columns of the combat magazine would be at odds with them…

    but hell what would they know compared with the intellectual giants of the uda and the farcical beliefs of those who still believe ulster Protestants are one of the lost tribes of Israel!!

    What would Strongbow signify to you…

    a drink probably, nothing else I dare say?

  • Ulsters my homeland

    you crack me up Twinbrook, lol.

    …actually, you should take yourself down to Dublin and go read Patrick’s confession, and take note what name he uses to identify the people. You might just learn something about the history of this island before the Papal Normans arrived. Oh, and make sure you tell your ancient Irish history teacher on the way back home, that he’s a liar.

  • realst

    Jim must be of the belief that its time for spinn fein`s normalisation policy to include the acceptance of touts back into the community.
    Surely he is laying out the ground for acceptance of prominent republicans yet to be exposed and by their proven agenda used on the republican sheep they will expect same sheep to back their stance.
    This will surely be a bridge too far for any republican.
    The leadership will see this as their loop hole to avoiding answering ALL the questions they have ducked so far.
    They ran the Ra into the ground along with god knows how many innocent lives including volunteers.
    How many men have been wrongly buried in disgrace as informers in order to keep the leadership in place.
    Kept in place to fulfil the brits wish’s of completely stripping the movement of materials and man power in order to starve any who disagreed with their surrender
    Who were the leadership to change the rules as they and Whitehall saw fit.
    By all accounts their war was over from 85 or before so as all lives lost since
    have been for keeping appearances and the pretence of a campaign with the goal of a UI.
    People want answers and by hook or crook they will get them.

  • sceolaing

    [text removed – mods]
    i read his column for the laugh, real Alice in Wonderland stuff, everything is good for driving that old bus of Adam’s ‘on the road to Cork’ in which everyone helped the bus along a little bit! Now , according to jim , even m.i.5. men in the i.r.a. were doing their bit for ireland. Were we ever partitioned at all? did the plantatation ever happen? was the act of union real or were all these things cunning republican plots on the road to a united ireland?

  • aquifer

    ‘the struggle they are involved in, which has achieved so much change,’

    And there would have been no change at all but for PIRA shooting and bombing people? Hard to say without having another alternative 35 years without the body bits in black plastic bags.

    ‘is not worth the sacrifice involved.’

    Yep, we wish you had not taken the trouble.

    You might wish you had not taken the trouble to teach young Paul Quinn his lesson if an informer turns supergrass. The failure of particular ‘supergrass’ trials in the past does not rule them out for ever.

  • aquifer

    So people who resorted to armed blackmail to promote an unpopular cause are now being threatened with justice at the height of their popularity?

    Seems fair.

  • lib2016l

    The Brits are leaving and they aren’t going to take public blame for their part in a dirty war which is over ten years ago and the republican movement is being publicly rehabilitated to take part in government, quite possibly part of government opposition. Unionists can resort to all the abuse they feel fits but their part in the future is becoming clearer all the time.

    Places like Castlereagh and Palace Army Barracks have become as notorious as the torture centres of Kenya and elsewhere. The poor sods who worked in them will be as soon forgotten. Time for their successors to find a new more hopeful tune.

  • agh

    ‘Places like Castlereagh and Palace Army Barracks have become as notorious as the torture centres of Kenya and elsewhere’
    u sure ur not getting mixed up with South Armagh again lib?

  • Euskadi

    The great Republican paradox, is that people like Gibney, hailed in some quarters as the great strategist who moved the Republican family away from armed struggle, into the democratic process, are unable and unwilling to admit the actual role played in that journey by the spies in their midst.

    Questions such as just how much the Brits knew about whom, and what pressure they were exerting behind the scenes on key individuals, are, from Gibney’s perspective best left unanswered.

    In a society, where telling the truth can still get you killed, Gibney knows only too well not to speak it. Republicans, have always loved myths and today they are playing out the biggest one of all time.

    Perhaps it makes them sleep better at night, and, somehow, get over the ever lingering thought that it really was the Brits that did it…..

  • agh

    IMHO it was the 9/11 that did it, or certainly accelerated the prcess. From that day on, terrorism arrived at the doorsteps of America. A continued IRA campaign would have been suicidal with regards to fund raising and potitical support from America.
    That said, there seems little doubt that Brit agents played key roles in redirected the republican movement.

  • Shore Road Resident

    I don’t think Glibney has ever made any great secret of his sexuality. It certainly won’t have made him a target for blackmail.

  • Fianna Fail

    “I don’t think Glibney has ever made any great secret of his sexuality. It certainly won’t have made him a target for blackmail.” Posted by Shore Road Resident

    But what about those he rogered (an expression we owe to one of the main leaders of the 1916 Gay Pride outing)? Let’s face it. Rebels are not normal people.

  • not fooled

    jim is conditioning the troops for even more revelations a out very senior republicans/mi5 agents who were touting for ireland. Its ok to be a tout as the leadership are full of them.