The “Top Secret” Press Release

One has to admire the sheer chutzpah of Brendan McFarlane. He was in Saturday’s Irish News trying to pass off a 1981 press release as a secret comm reflecting the personal viewpoint of Richard O’Rawe.

Mr McFarlane said yesterday he would break five years of silence by producing secret IRA comms written by Mr O’Rawe during the Hunger Strike in which he accused the British government of trying to prolong it.

The first first two lines of the original comm read: “LETTER TO PRESS ^ EVERYONE RECOGNISES THAT” and is signed “REPUBLICAN P.R.O. H-BLOCKS”.  (It is also reproduced in its press release form by the H Block Information Centre.)

McFarlane also tries to convince people that he is revealing brand-new information, even though Danny Morrison tried the same trick back in 2006 with the exact same comm. (It didn’t work then, either.)

McFarlane pretends that this is the first time he has spoken about the issue in 5 years. Is this because he hopes everyone’s forgotten what he said to Brian Rowan in June 2009? To wit: “And I said to Richard (O’Rawe) this is amazing, this is a huge opportunity and I feel there’s a potential here (in the Mountain Climber process) to end this.”

O’Rawe breaks it down:

“What is it about this that Bik doesn’t understand?
“Perhaps he should ask his colleagues in the Sinn Fein leadership what is the difference between public statements and private reality.
“After all, for years they told us that the IRA would never, ever decommission, yet in private preparations were being made to do just that.”

Just because Dear Leader can get away with pretending the past never happened doesn’t mean everyone else can.