Sinn Féin: “a criminal gang whom we consider has connections to MI5”

Via Newshound.  Here’s an interesting little story to consider from the News Letter

A SINN Fein property has been razed to the ground in an apparent arson attack in south Armagh.

The portable building in the Ford Cross area, close to Silverbridge, was used by the Burns Moley cumann as both a meeting place and for storage.

It said a number of historical artefacts were also destroyed in the blaze.

Councillor Colman Burns condemned the incident, which took place in the early hours of Thursday morning.

“We believe this cowardly attack was perpetrated by a criminal gang whom we consider has connections to MI5,” he said. [added emphasis]

“This gang was also responsible for recent defacement of both council property and various other premises, including the Sinn Fein office in Crossmaglen.”

And they would know.  Wouldn’t they?

Well? Wouldn’t they?

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  • Battle of the Bogside

    History could teach MI5 many lessons, they refuse to be taught!

  • Co. Down Man

    Pete Baker bores me. Any one else?

  • Cynic

    Why would MI5 be attacking SF?

  • James Bond

    burning down thier portakabin… must be the elite of Mi5.

  • Wabbits

    Oh dear me. It looks like Sinn Fein and their paymasters have fallen out. What a shame.

  • sdelaneys

    MI5 attacking Sinn Fein, shurely shome mishstake?

  • Battle of the Bogside

    When the shoe fits you lot don’t be long joining the band wagon!

    MI5=terrorism and despair!

  • sdelaneys

    No doubt which makes it interesting that S.F. made little protest at the expansion of MI5 in Ireland and accepted that they’d have the major role in what is loosely known as ‘security’ which SF as part of the administration is now fully behind.
    Regarding the burning of the portable building, locally the rumours circulate around a rumbling of discontent about allegations of ‘takeovers’ in football clubs. There is also talk of pictures worth ‘thousands’ being burned causing some to ponder on insurance. Things are rarely as simple as they seem and seldom as simple as any councillor declares them to be.

  • Fearglic

    Maybe they just want to get rme new furniture contract?? Oops gnats MFI

  • What goes around comes around…

  • Fearglic

    Rme= the gnats = that’s sorry flipping iPhone

  • padraig

    There where members of Sinn Fein and the IRA who were informers and worked for British Intelligence.

    Gasp.

    Shock.

    Horror.

    I never knew. Who ever would have guessed? Thanks for telling us, Peter.

  • TheHorse

    Whats new about this story Sinn Fein calling anyone who opposes them as MI5 agents, WOW. Tell that to Gerry Mc Gough and Kevin Crilly, being prosocuted for their actions 30 years ago by the very same people who sent them out to carry out the actions. Tell that to Harry Fitzsimmons who now lies isolated and abandoned in Maghaberry Prison after getting 8 years imprisonment for doing what was asked of him by the very same people who are now administering British justice in Ireland now.

  • joan

    not in the slightest, but i suspects his truths make you very uncomfortable! which pleases me.

  • al

    I thought from the blog title SF were describing themselves.

  • West Sider

    Taken all the last comments together – I conclude the attitude of these posters, including the original blogger, is ‘Hell slap it up ’em’

    I never knew Slugger had so many contributors willing to equivocate on criminal acts, or to skirt around issues, in order to excuse said criminal acts – and there’s me thinking they were all law abiding citizens.

    If a bunch of Sinn Fein activists were wiped out tonight, would that be alright given the past of the mainstream republican movement in Ireland?

    Would Pete Baker find it worthy of query if an ex-para leader was killed given their back catalogue – or a member of the SAS?

    Or an ordinary squaddie?

    This specious form of whataboutery is tacky and cheap, and rather boring.

    Is that his moral base line?

    Interestingly, the Garda operation in Louth which is very important given the threat to life and limb up here from unreconstructed terrorists and criminals seems to be barely worth a comment.

    What a twisted set of moral and editorial values this site promotes and attracts – at times.

  • Alias

    It looks like the Shinners don’t like being “legitimate targets.”

  • Alias

    Sinn Féin: “a criminal gang whom we consider has connections to MI5″

    – best headline yet.

  • al

    The idea that MI5 burned down a port-a-cabin is just stupid. The owner of the cabin is clearly offering nothing useful for the police to go on, to me that shows a lack of care. Maybe if silly propaganda games were not involved people would be more sympathetic.

  • jim

    they dont.thats why they called a ceasefire when the uff targeted them

  • redhugh78

    I thought things were getting a bit slow on slugger alright,but trust old Pete to pull the rabbit out of the hat with this crap.

  • Clanky

    I first read that as someone describing SF as ” a criminal gang [with] connections to MI5″

    Now that would be news worthy!

  • aquifer

    This blame the Brits game is wearing thin. Anti social behaviour by irish loyalists separatists or vandals? No its the secret service bogeyman again, english with a clipped accent and possibly a mustache and evil grin.

    Really.

  • Pete Baker

    That’s how you were invited to read the headline.

    The detail is were the interest lies.

  • Pete Baker

    “Maybe if silly propaganda games were not involved people would be more sympathetic.”

    Indeed.

    As for West Sider’s “This specious form of whataboutery is tacky and cheap, and rather boring.”

    Again. Indeed.

    As is the straw man “moral base line” West Sider ascribes to me.

  • Pete Baker

    Thanks, joan.

    We are all. apparently, required to be helpful witnesses to whatever it is Sinn Féin want to promote.

  • Bulmer

    So MI5 are organising grafitti and other petty forms of vandalism. I suppose they are also running escorts and drugs and anything else Colman Burns can blame the Brits for. What he can’t blame them on is his very tenuous grip on reality.

  • The enemy of my enemy is clearly my friend? Nice one guys, taken as a whole, this reads as a gleeful pro-dissident thread. I think a few moral compasses need re-calibrated.

  • Wild Bee

    Maybe to draw some sympathy…

  • Wild Bee

    Maybe to draw some sympathy… I mean this may be a SF propagando to draw sympathy, as if it were the target, because SF is doing such a “subversive” job as during the good old days.

  • sdelaneys

    John Joe,
    I think it reads more as an exercise in taking the micky out of a councillor who comes out with such nonsense as claiming MI5 are behind graffiti and arson in Crossmaglen and Silverbridge.

  • sdelaneys

    Incidentally, the last arson in the area was the burning down of a billboard belonging to the Quinn Support Group in Crossmaglen. Strangely enough, neither councillor Burns,or any other SF spokesperson made a comment on that middle of the night attack in a built up area with several senior citizens residing close by frightened by fire brigades and leaping flames. That old selective outrage again.

  • Nah, it reads (if you look at his actual words) like he is deriding the dissidents as a criminal gang and says that they have “connections to MI5”.
    In context, some comments above make out that the dissidents are okay if they attack SF, hence the moral ambiguity in a few people’s tone. And it is a bit disingenuous to make out that the original post was just poking fun at someone from SF making claims about connections to MI5 – if any other party had premises that were attacked this wouldn’t be presented as remotely humorous. Particularly given Dermot Ahern’s assessment of the threat from the dissidents yesterday.

  • sdelaneys

    John Joe,
    I’m with you now; you think its ‘dissidents’ attacking S.F. premises. That makes it political action, whether we like it or not, which republicans never viewed as ‘criminal’.

    So it’s an argument about who has the most MI5 connections seeing as the grafitti refered to on SF offices in Crossmaglen related to ‘MI5 Touts’ or something similar.

    The new pups of new IRA attacking the old dogs of the new ‘good old IRA.’ How do we describe the previous ‘good old IRA’ now?
    One thing about this world, we’re never scarce of a laugh.
    Of course there is still the possibilty that this incident was something else, something local.

  • Anon

    Or to be more accurate, you deliberately misrepresented the story to drum up interest; I’m sure a stellar career at a tabloid awaits.

  • Maybe I’m reading his comments wrong – but did he not say “We believe this cowardly attack was perpetrated by a criminal gang whom we consider has connections to MI5,”?

    I’m guessing that the comments being directed at whoever he believes carried out the attack. So this is a slagging match being turned into a non-story.

  • Alias

    It’s the dramatic irony of a criminal gang who are an MI5 front condeming those who remain opposed to Brtish rule as being agents of the British state that I found amusing. In regard to the attack, the Shinners would be seen as collaborators with the British state so they now fall into their own category of “legitimate target.” They are merely condemning others for acting according to their own idealogy – the fact that their handlers have moved them into political mide doesn’t alter that.

  • kells

    If the ‘RA had turned their guns on the loyalists for a month the problen would have been solved!

  • sdelaneys

    or is it a non-story turned into a slagging match?

  • Pete Baker

    There is no misrepresentation involved.

    The title is a quote from a Sinn Féin councillor.

    The rest of the post clearly identifies that point.

  • Anon

    The nattural assumption of the reader is that the quote refers to SF. It does not. You’ve omitted “attack was perpetrated by” which is needed to convey the full meaning. You are selectively quoting.

    Moreover, it is actually inaccurate. The statement did not come from SF, unless you can post a press release from that corporate entity. The statement of a councillor is no more the statement of the party than if a Tory Councillor goes off half cocked on tax policy. Anyhoo, I read it as asnide remark regarding dissidents — ironically exactly the opposite of what your headline implies.

    I’d definitely aim to make it snappier if you really wnat that gig at the Sun, thoug.

  • Battle of the Bogside

    Jim, catch yourself on, the UFF did not target anyone. MI5 did the targeting and the UFF did the shooting. It is a shame that the majority of the targeting was of innocent Catholics, which the UFF had no problem shooting as any Taig is a target.

    The UFF were run by drug dealing serial killers who are now licking wheely bins on the Shankill road, Troon and Bolton, while the PIRA are running this ‘Protestant state’ for the better of us all.

  • Jean Meslier

    Here we go with the usual suspects happily strolling along to an attack on a political party’s premises.
    You can almost hear the tee-hees as they bash out their little venomous remarks on their keyboards.
    MI5 is a fact of life in Ireland, both north & south of the border. But here is another fact of life:
    Cllr. Burns represents the views of 80% of the voters in south Armagh and that sticks in the throats of MI5, dissidents, stoops, securocrats etc etc.

    The people have spoken

  • ranger1640

    Maybe the local hoods mistook the portacbin for a temporary Orange or Protestant church hall???

  • Battle of the Bogside

    Well said, Sinn Fein are the most successful political organisation in Ireland since the Irish nation was partitioned. Partitioned I might add to stop loyalist’s such as Craig and Carson from committing acts of terrorism!

  • sdelaneys

    I’m not sure if you’re serious or not; if you’re joking it’s slightly funny seeing as ‘the most successful political organisation in Ireland since the Irish nation was partitioned’ has only managed to get into a British sponsored and paid for administration in the smaller state beloved of Craig and Carson and are roundly rejected by the vast majority in the larger state abhorred by Craig and Carson. Strange old success, helping to continue the very partition you are railing about.
    Anyway, what’s that got to do with the burning of a hut?

    Great to see the ‘securocrats’ line again, we haven’t heard about them in a while. Did yez not get rid of them? What were yez at at all in the talks when those boyos are still about at their graffiti and hut burning? Holy God will we ever be free from those accursed securocrats and the likes burning our huts and insisting our leaders pay taxes on the millions they made fighting for freedom.

  • Alias

    “Cllr. Burns represents the views of 80% of the voters in south Armagh and that sticks in the throats of MI5, dissidents, stoops, securocrats etc etc.”

    He also respresents the views of the British state as it set those views out in the Government of Ireland Act; Ireland Act 1949; the Northern Ireland Constitution Act 1973, and the NNorthern Ireland Act 1998:

    Here is the view of the British state on the constitutional status of Northern Ireland as declared in the Ireland Act, 1949:

    “It is hereby declared that Northern Ireland remains part of His Majesty’s dominions and of the United Kingdom and it is hereby affirmed that in no event will Northern Ireland or any part thereof cease to be part of His Majesty’s dominions and of the United Kingdom, without the consent of the Parliament of Northern Ireland.”

    Here is the view of the British state on the constitutional status of Northern Ireland as declared in the Northern Ireland Act, 1998:

    “It is hereby declared that Northern Ireland in its entirety remains part of the United Kingdom and shall not cease to be so without the consent of a majority of the people of Northern Ireland voting in a poll held for the purposes of this section in accordance with Schedule 1.”

    The only difference is that their supporters rejected the legitimacy of British Rule before the Provos were used by their handlers to persaude them to align their views with the views of the British state. They went from rejecting the legitimacy of the constitutional status of Northern Ireland to accepting it because that is what those who are charged with defending the realm led them to do. It isn’t the British state that has changed its views to align with the Provos. 😉

  • Clanky

    “The detail is where the interest lies”

    I would have to disagree, the idea of a SF councillor making outraageous statements about MI5 sabotaging SF is so old hat now that it barely causes a blink of an eye, as evidenced by the fact that you had to spice up the headline to cause any interest.

    “The nattural assumption of the reader is that the quote refers to SF”

    Only because the idea of Sinn Fein as a criminal organisation with links to MI5 is not altogether implausible.

  • Brian MacAodh

    “The only difference is that their supporters rejected the legitimacy of British Rule before the Provos were used by their handlers to persaude them to align their views with the views of the British state. They went from rejecting the legitimacy of the constitutional status of Northern Ireland to accepting it because that is what those who are charged with defending the realm led them to do. It isn’t the British state that has changed its views to align with the Provos.”

    What difference does it make? They could have kept on rejecting the legitimacy of NI til the cows come home and it wouldn’t make any difference whatsoever. They decided, or their leaders decided, to (in effect) accept it’s legitimacy in return for the promise that they would have equal rights and a say in government.

    In the end NI will remain part of the UK until the majority of NI vote otherwise…same as it’s always been.

  • Doesn’t actually say it was a portakabin, remember portakabin jealously guard their product name, and the article states portable building.

    It could have just as easily been a portaloo and just as easily an inside job (or similar).

  • sdelaneys

    Jaysus,
    I hope they don’t start the diesel or the fags or we’ll all be ruined in newly law abiding sth Armagh republican (s.f. style) circles where we are scundered night and day washing the old diesel and importing the old fags. Sure we have to get the money to buy the streets of Manchester somewhere. That’s how we’ll free Ireland, by buying England. We’re the boys.

  • stewart1

    Slow news day Pete?

    At least this might be worth discussing

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/northern_ireland/10149846.stm

  • sdelaneys

    Had a look and it’s not half as interesting as MI5 burning down SF huts and writing on their office walls.

    Just imagine a late night conference in Hollywood or along the Thames and a James Bond type saying, “Look here, you chaps, I’ve just had a spiffing idea. Let’s take a trip to Ford’s Cross and burn down a wooden hut! That’ll annoy those Irish rotters who are being so helpful in Stormont.’

  • Alias

    “What difference does it make?”

    It makes no difference if you do not agree that you have a right to national self-determination, and can live quite happily as a non-sovereign nation within a sovereign nation’s state. It makes a big difference if, however, like the British nation and its state, you do believe that your nation has an inalienable right to determine its own affairs. If it made no difference then that state would not have put such effect into defending it.

    “What difference does it make? They could have kept on rejecting the legitimacy of NI til the cows come home and it wouldn’t make any difference whatsoever.”

    On the contrary, a people cannot be governed by a foreign state when they withdraw their consent to be governed by it. Civil disobedience would have terminated British rule in very short measure but that would have been frightfully inconvenient and led to a withdrawal of dole payments, etc. The British state knew that civil disobedience was the weapon that ended its colonial reign in its other colonies and hence they directed opposition to British rule away from that effective option and into the impotent option of state-sponsored murder gangs. Contrary to self-serving myth, the Catholic tribe never withdrew its consent to be governed by the British state.

    “They decided, or their leaders decided, to (in effect) accept it’s legitimacy in return for the promise that they would have equal rights and a say in government.”

    But they don’t have equal rights. One nation is sovereign, having national rights and the other nation is non-sovereign, having renounced its national rights, declaring that it has no right to national self-determination and that this right properly belongs to the British nation. They do, however, have the same equal civil and religious rights that they always had.

    However, it was not necessary to formally declare that they had no right to national self-determination in order for them to enjoy the rights that they were always entitled to as British citizens and nor was it necessary for them to hold public office within the British state, since they held public office before they endorsed the legitimacy of British rule and rejected their former right to self-rule. Having rejected their former right to self-determination in its entirety, this is not be to reclaimed by them in any unified entity.

    In fact unity can only occur if the Irish nation also agrees to give up its right to self-determination and subject itself to the veto of a separate nation, so the myth that they have simply been led by their handers to change the means to a former end but not the end itself is precisely that – a myth.

  • wee buns

    Makes no difference which enemy is identified, which protection is offered, which power abuses it’s initiative.
    None of it is legitimate.

  • Anon

    “Only because the idea of Sinn Fein as a criminal organisation with links to MI5 is not altogether implausible.”

    Or its being bandied about by different people that it’s old hat. Horses for courses. In any case, the biggest reason wy you’d read it that way is that’s how it is written

  • Battle of the Bogside

    ‘the Catholic tribe never withdrew its consent to be governed by the British state’

    In the 1919 general election, Sinn Fein won 77% of the vote in Ireland on a separatist ticket. I think your statement is unsubstantiated and a little incorrect to say the least.