Sinn Fein haven’t ruled out a McGuinness victory, but…

One of the more revealing pieces of journalism on the Aras race this week was in Irish, and quoted in our latest round up… It’s provides a brief insight into Sinn Fein’s thinking re the election:

Nil sé as an cheist go mbainfeadh Martin Mc Guinness toghchán na hUachtaránachta ach tá siad sin cheana féin ag iarraidh a bheith cinnte de go rachaidh an dul chun cinn atá ag titim amach anois chun tairbhe an pháirtí sa chéad olltoghchán eile.

In effect, party strategists have not ruled out a McGuinness victory, but the material improvement of the party’s prospects for the next general is and always was the desired outcome.

Given the relaxed nature of their campaign (no canvassing yesterday, along with events in Northern Ireland where electors are thin on the ground), I suspect they feel that the bulk of Martin’s work is already done.

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  • keano10

    There’s definitely a very relaxed feel to Sinn Fein’s campaign at the moment. Some surprising celebrity endorsements, good poll figures and indications that the support for McGuinness may also transfer into a significant increase in support for the party at the next election. So far, so good…

  • Alias

    That is the spin they’ll use as damage limitation when they lose. But if it is true, then it shows utter contempt for the democratic process in Ireland.

    Candidates should act in good faith and not to abuse the electoral process for selfish ulterior purposes that are unrelated to the political office they’re seeking. It is a tantamount to confessing that couldn’t care less about providing a good president for the country and used the election instead for party gain.

    That type of abject cynicism towards democracy and abuse of good faith would show once again why they are unfit for public office.

  • Sounds a bit like my own perception when I predicted that Gerry would run for the Aras. I’m a bit surprised that the article makes no mention of the significance of 2016 for SF.

  • keano10

    Alias,

    What a load of tosh. Do you also apply that logic to the DUP when they refused to field a candidate in Fermanagh South Tyrone in a blatant sectarian move to have a Unionist elected from another political party?

    Sinn Fein are standing in this election and they are trying to win it. If however they dont, and other gains fall their way as a result of the decision to stand, then that is simply good politics. Clever and informed strategic political planning.

  • Rory Carr

    Sinn Féin have every right to feel relaxed – they have already won. The purpose of the party in supporting Martin McGuinness’s candidacy for President was to maximise its profile throughout he south and to stamp itself firmly as the party of opposition. In all that it has already succeeded more than even the most optimistic party strategist might have hoped.

    Alias, not for the first time, confuses two issues – McGuinness’s individual bid for the presidency and Sinn Féin’s support for that bid.

    In the first case there can be no doubt but that the candidate is in it to win it and the progress he has made in establishing himself as a contender, not only one to be taken seriously, but it seems, even to be feared by the governing party, is proof of that intent.

    That Sinn Féin might benefit whether or not their preferred candidate’s bid is successful is hardly an indicator of bad faith on its part, although the success of that candidate’s goodwill campaign, whether or not he is successful in gaining the presidency, seems to be cause enough to provoke a strong feeling of sour grapes in some quarters.

  • Mainland Ulsterman

    Yes it’s a good bit of expectation management: they need to be able to sell 2nd or 3rd place as an achievement so can’t talk themselves up too much. Seems to me this election’s main function for them is to push the normalisation of SF further in the South, get people comfortable with voting for them.

    I’ve been listening to Pat Kenny podcasts commenting on all this in recent days. The debate’s interesting – I forget how partisan people down there can be when it comes to discussions of Northern Ireland. Interesting too to see how manipulative northern Republicans like Martina Devlin can be of a southern audience or even a southern panel. Knowing that many in the mainstream down there (e.g. Pat Kenny himself) pussy-foot around when it comes to Republicans in Northern Ireland, she shamelessly plays the “I was there” card to try and silence the more questioning voices.

    I do wonder what this election campaign will show about the centre of gravity of southern understanding of the Troubles, 13 years on from the universal acceptance by all parties, including Sinn Fein, of partition and of the validity of Northern Ireland (and therefore the pointlessness of the IRA campaign to end them). I don’t sense from listening to the debates down there that Irish nationalism has quite got its head around that. Even critics of Martin McGuinness seem to take it as read that the border was some kind of wrong against the Irish people. Old ideas, even completely discredited ones, die hard.

  • “although the success of that candidate’s goodwill campaign”

    Rory, are you thinking of the Latimer strategy? SF has more immediate concerns here in the Kingdom of Moyle where SF HQ seems to have lost control of its grass-roots, including nearly half of the Republican vote.

    By the way, there are two governing parties in the Dáil, not one.

  • 241934 john brennan

    Martin McGuinness says he left the IRA in 1974, but admits to being second in command of the IRA In Derry during operation Motorman, which ended the “no go” area , on 31 July 1972. Well signalled in advance by the British army there was only minor resistance by the IRA. However, on the same day the IRA left three car bombs in the nearby village of Claudy. Martin McGuinness denies all knowledge of that terrible event.

    James Simmons wrote the song/ballad (below). Instead of speaking at the next ‘presidentional election’ debate, Dana should simply sing the Ballad of Claudy

    BALLAD OF CLAUDY

    The Sperrins surround it, the Faughan flows by
    At each end of Main Street the hills and the sky
    The small town of Claudy at ease in the sun
    Last July in the morning, a new day begun

    How peaceful and pretty, if the moment could stop
    McIlhenny is straightening things in his shop
    His wife is outside serving petrol and then
    A child takes a cloth to a big window-pane

    And McCloskey is taking the weight off his feet
    McClelland and Miller are sweeping the street
    Delivering milk at the Beaufort Hotel
    Young Temple’s enjoying his first job quite well

    And Mrs. McLaughlin is scrubbing her floor
    Artie Hone’s crossing the street to a door
    Mrs. Brown, looking around for her cat
    Goes off up an entry, what’s strange about that

    Not much, but before she comes back to the road
    The strange car parked outside her house will explode
    And all of the people I’ve mentioned outside
    Will be waiting to die or already have died

    An explosion too loud for your eardrums to bear
    Young children squealing like pigs in the square
    All faces chalk-white or streaked with bright red
    And the glass, and the dust, and the terrible dead

    For an old lady’s legs are blown off, and the head
    Of a man’s hanging open, and still he’s not dead
    He is shrieking for mercy while his son stands and stares
    And stares, and then suddenly – quick – disappears

    And Christ, little Katherine Aiken is dead
    Mrs. McLaughlin is pierced through the head
    Meanwhile to Dungiven the killers have gone
    And they’re finding it hard to get through on the phone

    Repeat 1

  • Rory Carr

    No, Nevin, I did not have the Rev. Latimer in mind at all, more the positive impact that McGuinness was making in the teeth of a relentless onslaught from formerly powerful voices in the msm.

    I have no idea what the hell the Kingdom of Moyle might have to do with all this, but if it keeps you happy..

    As to there being two governing parties in the Dáil – yeah, sure there are. There are two in Westminster as well.

  • Nunoftheabove

    The other potential benefit for SF is that as the free state media have in the main tirelessly and relentlessly pursued the Provo past bit this time perhaps to the point of audience exhaustion so come future elections – where the majority of those standing for them will probably be ‘clean’ anyway – this may not be deemed worth a reprise to anything like the same extent as it will be deemed old news and the same stock questions not considered worth rehashing for the same stock answers ad nauseum, apart from the usual suspects who never seem to bore themselves on these matters as much as they do others going over the same old ground. Besides, running any campaign is a learning experience for upcoming parties and therein lies value for SF too (they’ll consider it a gratis MOT on their PR capabilities in the south) so it’s a no-lose for them really unless the vote really collapses late doors and/or the already modest expectations on transfers prove to be disappointed and embarassingly poor.

  • Cynic2

    “Sinn Féin have every right to feel relaxed – they have already won.”

    That all depends on Marty’s overall vote. Do the people of Ireland want to taint the Presidency by his past?

  • Cynic2

    What was the yellow card for this time?

    What do I have to go to get it upgraded to red?

  • “two governing parties in the Dáil – yeah, sure there are”

    Rory, I was merely correcting your original claim that there was one 🙂

    In regard to that ‘more the positive impact that McGuinness was making in the teeth of a relentless onslaught’ Vincent Browne certainly wiped the floor with him, much as he did with the other pretty limp contenders.

    I don’t know what the significance of the changes in Moyle are. They might indicate that the young turks view Martin, after all those PRM flips, as yesterday’s man and that he might as well be put out to graze in Phoenix Park. MM – the PP in PP – has a certain ring to it …

  • Harry Flashman

    I tend to agree with the analysis, two months ago no one even thought about a Sinn Fein candidacy for the presidency now their candidate is the most talked about.

    Furthermore they have “lanced the boil” with McGuinness, they can get all the IRA stuff out into the open now and thrashed to death, if he doesn’t win (and I have a sneaking suspicion he might just pull it off) next time around it will be a media-friendly, “clean” southern female candidate and she’ll romp home.

    SF are actually playing a very clever strategy here and setting themselves up well for the next general election into the bargain.

    With the Irish economy going into the tank, the shinners are finally getting their Weimar moment. We shall be living in interesting times soon.

  • Nunoftheabove

    Nevin

    Moyle’s not entirely as untypical as perhaps is being inferred. Many formely of and/or ‘for’ SF are jettisoning him and his chums for the self-same reasons that others – previously hostile to the idea of him continuing to breathe – are warming to him; his apparent willingness (enthusiasm, even) to distance himself from aspects of the struggle irks some, for others it’s a natural tendency to drift away on account of the long-predicted surge towards constitutional respectability and of course evidence of what they see as overt careerism and opportunism. Well that plus SF’s delivery of not much of substance to a good number of communities across the north despite the hype and the faux heart-warming bonhomie with the DUPes. Expectations may have been unrealistic – were, in many cses – but the disappointment at tangible success on the ground is bound to result in disillusionment.

  • Pat Mc Larnon

    “I don’t know what the significance of the changes in Moyle are. They might indicate that the young turks view Martin, after all those PRM flips, as yesterday’s man and that he might as well be put out to graze in Phoenix Park. MM – the PP in PP – has a certain ring to it …”

    A variation on a theme that has been going back to the previous Assembly elections. Somehow it never seems to manifest itself come election time.

  • “Somehow it never seems to manifest itself come election time.”

    Perhaps Moyle is different, Pat; SF only picked up just over 50% of the Republican first preferences and even the current SF councillors look a bit flaky. It lost a seat in Ballycastle to a former SF councillor and was overtaken in the Glens for another seat that it expected to take from the SDLP.

    Martin would have been viewed as the SF enforcer in North Antrim but the need to adopt a pussy-cat persona for an international as well as an Ireland-26 audience has given the young turks of the greater Republican family more courage.

  • galloglaigh

    Mick

    Any reason why I had two comments automatically in for moderation (same comment, different time), that have not made it through yet?

  • Martin just can’t help making life easy for the critical/discerning southern media: “I’ve a proven record in attracting investment to the North”. The, er, proven record is one of destroying jobs and keeping investment at bay. Does he mean an ‘all-Ireland economy’ in or out of the Eurozone? Will PIIGs fly?

  • galloglaigh

    … that the border was some kind of wrong against the Irish people

    That is exactly what the border was. It divided us all up, and left an insecure minority on either side of it. Before the formation of the Northern state, we were all Irish. Now most of us are, and the rest are in that big river in Africa 🙂

    I think this is a great move by the Shinners. It will raise their profile; they will benefit in local and national elections in the future. To say it goes against the principles of the democratic process, is quite silly. It is using the democratic process to raise your profile. That’s democracy for you 🙂 🙂

  • Cynic2

    galloglaigh

    Something seems to be going wrong with moderation. I have a yellow and cannot for the life of me see why. This seems to be happening to me regularly now. Perhaps I have annoyed someone

  • Neil

    I don’t think they’ll win it, nor do I think it was their primary intent. Nothing wrong with that, having an additional candidate in the field is no affront to democracy (if it were then no-hopers wouldn’t run in elections of any kind, though they regularly do). Of course if they do win it that will be fantastic.

    The relentlessly negative attacks on MMG have helped him no doubt, coupled with his ability to handle himself well under pressure the more attacks met and deflected the better so keep ’em coming folks, and you never know. He might just get those extra votes after all.

  • galloglaigh

    Cynic

    Did you not get an email to say which comment you got the yellow for? By the way – what’s a ‘Black Spot’. Does that mean you’re not allowed to play any more?

  • “Before the formation of the Northern state, we were all Irish.”

    Galloglaigh, before 1921 – being in the UK – we were British and Irish; after 1998 we became British, Irish and Others. That gall-/’foreigner’ prefix would infer that you could be one of those Others 😉

  • Nunoftheabove

    Jaysus lads any effin’ chance of staying remotely on topic here for a change ?

    (galloglaigh, I’d consult a competent physician if a black spot’s your bother).

  • Alias

    “I tend to agree with the analysis, two months ago no one even thought about a Sinn Fein candidacy for the presidency now their candidate is the most talked about.” – Harry Flashman

    Pardon? Never mind two months ago, years ago the Shinners were spinning a Sinn Fein candidacy for the presidency with Gerry Adams as the candidate. It was their wet dream to be taking the salute at the 1916 centenary, having told their gullible supporters that they all be in a united Ireland long before then.

    Two months ago the speculation was on who was going to be the Sinn Fein candidacy for the presidency: Mary Lou seemed the most likely, but a dozen or so names were in play.

    The only reason Gerry Adams wasn’t their candidate is because his chances of actually winning it had faded due to his shennanigans over his brother’s alleged child incest case.

    Ergo, they needed to replace him with someone who had a better chance of winning it.

    If not winning was the core dynamic then there would have been no need to replace Gerry with Marty. They were in it to win it, and this is just there ‘every loser is a winner too’ spin.

  • Alias, you and I were not surprised that the SF top brass had an eye on the Aras for 2016. How come the pundits failed to call it?

  • Nunoftheabove

    Alias

    Not necessarily either/or; some each way possibility of a win and minimal downside if they didn’t/don’t win unless the roof caved/caves in can’t be far away from their calculation. I personally doubt if Adams could have been able to land the votes that McG could/might as he lacks any of the likeability McG’s able to switch on in public but we’ll never know for sure. I’m sure you’re right about Adams’ not being involved on account of his brother’s alleged child rape-related extradition diffs but the upping of the ante by taking McG out of his role to have a tilt at it shows that they’re intent on as serious a run as they can in the circs.

  • Neil

    The only reason Gerry Adams wasn’t their candidate is because his chances of actually winning it had faded due to his shennanigans over his brother’s alleged child incest case.

    What utter horseshit. Didn’t seem to impact much in Louth did it? Then they might have the wit to realise one does not punish a man for the sins of his brother. He told her to go to the cops. She did. Their response was to try to recruit her as an informer.

    Who do you think should be responsible for arresting and charging criminals Alias? Most people would say the cops, no?

    If not winning was the core dynamic then there would have been no need to replace Gerry with Marty. They were in it to win it, and this is just there (sic) ‘every loser is a winner too’ spin.

    Replace? Now now Alias they didn;t replace Adams as you well know as Adams was never a candidate – nor do I remember him being mentioned as a candidate for this particular election.

    If you think the Shinners expected Marty to walk in then you’re the gullible one me old son, everything was against them from the off.

    Of course in the black and white world of Alias the shinners are a pack of morons, and the fact that this has enhanced SF’s chances was just a happy accident and in no way expected.

    For the rest of us the fact that SF have acted in such a way as to enhance SF’s chances seems like a well thought out plan. To Alias it must just be a coincidence!

  • Mainland Ulsterman

    Galloglaigh,
    “Before the formation of the Northern state, we were all Irish. Now most of us are, and the rest are in that big river in Africa.”

    You can’t say stuff like that any more; unless you’re a Republican dissident. All parties to the GFA agreed in 1998 it was “the birthright of all the people of Northern Ireland to identify themselves and be accepted as Irish or British, or both, as they may so choose …” Adams and McGuinness’s words, among others, not mine.

    So the obligation means actually accepting other people’s identity, not telling them what identity to have. Obvious stuff really, even if completely incompatible with nationalist doctrine.

  • Mainland Ulsterman

    cynic2 and galloglaigh,
    Yes I don’t understand your yellow cards either … but maybe I missed something?

  • Rory Carr

    Alias, at 10.00 am, was insisting that a Sinn Féin-backed candidate was only being promoted to further party aims and was not seriously attempting to win the election because, as he argued, “[They] couldn’t care less about providing a good president for the country and used the election instead for party gain.”

    Now at 4.38 pm, he is insisting the opposite, that instead, “They were in it to win it, and this is just there ‘every loser is a winner too’ spin.”

    Perhaps he’s had a good lunch.

  • Limerick

    “The only reason Gerry Adams wasn’t their candidate is because his chances of actually winning it had faded due to his shennanigans over his brother’s alleged child incest case.”

    Alias,

    I can’t agree with that. The fact that Adams claimed to have known about the allegations, and then went on to lie about his relationship with his brother had no effect on his election in Louth. In fact he went on to top the poll. You or I might not vote for such a man, but clearly there are plenty on this island who are more than happy to.

    I believe that Adams did not stand because he doesn’t yet believe that the time is right, and he doesn’t like being linked to failure. Coco has been put forward to prepare the way, but ultimately Adams wants the prize for himself. 2016 will come and go, but I’ll bet that Adams will be the candidate next time.

  • Limerick

    It would seem that PIRA’s victims in the south are now finding their voice.

    http://www.rte.ie/news/2011/1010/president.html

  • Limerick, Ronan Bennett in today’s Guardian would have us believe that Martin didn’t leave the IRA in 1974. You won’t credit this but apparently Martin was still an IRA leader in 1998!

    No one believes he left in 1974. Indeed, his stature as an IRA leader was crucial in selling the peace deal to the organisation.

    Bennett tells a rollicking yarn!

    Principled and effective, McGuinness’s popularity with his supporters comes from a mix of integrity, straight dealing, and a refusal to be compromised by the trappings of success.

    You’ll find no record of about turns here 🙂

    All of Ireland could use what Martin McGuinness gave the North

    Now, I wouldn’t wish that on anywhere.

  • Limerick

    “All of Ireland could use what Martin McGuinness gave the North”

    Nevin,

    Looking as if it had been bombed from the air?

  • Martin fails to give an accurate account of his confrontation with Mr Kelly today and to answer the questions posed. The customary waffle that ‘the peace process is recognised as one of the most successful in the world’ will bring no consolation to those victims who want answers.

  • “Given the relaxed nature of their campaign”

    Well today’s encounter was a bit like a slap in the face with a wet cloth; there was no easy escape for the Derry man in the full glare of the media.

  • Limerick

    Nevin,

    No doubt the Sinners will spin it as an ‘own goal’ that actually helped Coco’s cause.

  • Cynic2

    Galloglaigh

    Its arbitrary. I was banned for a week for describing an academic argument as specious nonsense.

  • Cynic2

    “Sinn Fein haven’t ruled out a McGuinness victory, but…”

    ….even after today? What adds poignancy is that the man is the son of a REAL Irish soldier doing his duty for the State and murdered by the terrorists from Marty’s ‘movements’ who were making a great leap forward by kidnapping (for money) a man bringing jobs to Irish people.

    The memory of that will do wonders for Marty’s ability to promote inward investment

  • The Sydney Morning Herald is carrying today’s confrontation, courtesy of an old Talkback messageboard contributor and sparring partner, Shawn Pogatchnik. Shawn’s article is liberally laced with quotes.

  • Alias

    “I can’t agree with that. The fact that Adams claimed to have known about the allegations, and then went on to lie about his relationship with his brother had no effect on his election in Louth. In fact he went on to top the poll. You or I might not vote for such a man, but clearly there are plenty on this island who are more than happy to.” – Limerick

    Yes, but the Louth constituency includes towns where there is a rump of Provos such as Dundalk. Those folks would vote for Gary Glitter if you put a Shinner badge on him. Adams, with 21.7% of first preferences, did a bit better at the polls than the last Shinner that he inherited the seat from, Arthur Morgan.

    If Adams was such a vote-getter in Ireland why did he run for a safe Shinner seat and not run for a seat where his alleged popular appeal to voters would have gained his party a seat that it didn’t already hold? That seems to underutilize his alleged appeal to voters. He ran for a safe seat because he’d be humiliated at the polls if he put his alleged appeal to the test outside of the grubbier constituencies where the Shinners have carved out a niche.

    You can’t extrapolate from a constituency like Louth to the other constituencies and conclude that because he did okay there that he would have done equally okay in the other constituencies.

    One other dynamic to keep in mind is that the more devoted Shinners are brainwashed to interpret any criticism of their cult’s leader as a sure sign of purity and martyrdom. That “Ourselves Alone” mentality produces the opposite outcome in Shinners to what the scrutiny produces in normal people, so it makes the followers all the more determined to put their little Xs where The Great Leader wants them to put it. It’s probably about 20% or so of Shinners so just enough to cover the marginal increase in the vote from Morgan.

    “I believe that Adams did not stand because he doesn’t yet believe that the time is right, and he doesn’t like being linked to failure. Coco has been put forward to prepare the way, but ultimately Adams wants the prize for himself. 2016 will come and go, but I’ll bet that Adams will be the candidate next time.” – Limerick

    Which is as good a theory as any but not one that I subscribe to. It’s always ‘now or never’ with these folks. They try to give the impression they’re masterminds playing a log game but that is just for internal consumption. As Freddie Scappaticci “The media love to have these theories, that the IRA are masterminds. They’re not. Okay, sometimes things fall into place and they can claim afterwards, ‘we did it for that reason,’ but they didn’t do it for that reason.”

    Alias, at 10.00 am, was insisting that a Sinn Féin-backed candidate was only being promoted to further party aims and was not seriously attempting to win the election because, as he argued, “[They] couldn’t care less about providing a good president for the country and used the election instead for party gain.”

    Now at 4.38 pm, he is insisting the opposite, that instead, “They were in it to win it, and this is just there ‘every loser is a winner too’ spin.” – Rory Carr

    Or perhaps you didn’t read the post carefully enough and therefore didn’t notice the conditional sentence?

    “That is the spin they’ll use as damage limitation when they lose. But if it is true, then it shows utter contempt for the democratic process in Ireland.”

  • keano10

    Alias,

    So now all Sinn Fein voters are “brainwashed” members of a “cult”…???

    Well i’m a Sinn Fein voter and I dont recall sacrificing a cow or anything yesterday evening. In fact I read my beautiful little daughter a lovely bedtime story while her mum helped our other daughter with her homework. We then sat down and had a nice cappucino after a long day at work.

    Alias, you clearly live and occupy some alternative dimension. And to be honest, if the above sort of delerious waffle is the best you can do, then you would probably be best saying nothing at all… ( as Ronan Keating used to say…).

  • FuturePhysicist

    I think the plan is kick Fine Gael into opposition, then have a dysfunctional coalition both sides of the border.

  • The Derry Journal has a nice bit of puffoonery on the presidential candidate:

    The presidential hopeful also said he wants to represent everyone across the island of Ireland. “I have said from the outset that I intend to be a President of the People. I want to be a President that stands for hard pressed working families; for those struggling to pay mortgages; for those people losing their jobs and facing emigration; for those with disabilities; for those lying on hospital trolleys.

    “These are the people who need a President who will shine a light on their needs, who will highlight their concerns, who will stand up for their interests. ..

    “As President I will defend and promote Ireland. I will uphold the constitution. I will stand up for Irish sovereignty and freedom.

    “Throughout 40 years and more of political activism, on the streets of Derry, in Downing Street, in the White House, in the Assembly and on Good Friday I have only ever been interested in serving my country.”

    Has Martin not read the job description? The President is Ireland’s Head of State ie ‘Ireland-26’ and its electorate get to choose. ‘Island of Ireland’ emphasises the point that Ireland is the name of the state.

    Of those who survived PRM gun, bomb and iron-bar attacks quite a few must have spent time on hospital trolleys.

    It’s Martin’s and the PRM’s deeds not needs, his paramilitary not his political activism that are currently having a line shone on, much to to the candidate’s chagrin.

    The late Mr Kelly was serving his country when his life was snuffed out by the PRM and Martin’s reaction was to run for cover behind weasel words about reconciliation.

  • Neil

    It’s Martin’s and the PRM’s deeds not needs, his paramilitary not his political activism that are currently having a line shone on, much to to the candidate’s chagrin.

    I’d say you’re reading the situation just as well as FG there Nevin. Obviously they haven’t cottoned onto the fact that the relentlessly negative attacks have resulted only in MMG moving up the polls.

    I suggest that you’re thinking too Northern for this situation. Of course in NI victims will work against Martin, and Unionists are only too happy to assist. But many in the south have heard enough of the IRA stories about agents being executed by agents on the word of an alleged agent – all on the British payroll.

    a good few of them probably remember their great uncles (as I do mine) who were in the ‘IRA’ and who’s lineage leads us directly to the provos. In essence they don;t think like Unionists because they aren’t unionists, all the negative stuff is helping Martin so by all means keep it coming.

  • dwatch

    McGuinness branded a liar by son of soldier killed in IRA shoot-out. By Eoghan MacConnell and Paul O’Brien
    Tuesday, October 11, 2011

    MARTIN McGUINNESS has been branded a liar by the son of an Irish army soldier killed by the IRA.
    Mr McGuinness’s IRA past again overshadowed his presidential campaign when he was confronted while canvassing in Athlone, Co Westmeath, by David Kelly, the son of the late Private Patrick Kelly.

    Pte Kelly and trainee garda Gary Sheehan died in a shoot-out at Derrada Woods, Co Leitrim, in 1983 when trying to rescue businessman Don Tidey, who had been kidnapped by the IRA.

    Holding a photograph of his father, David Kelly demanded the Sinn Féin presidential candidate reveal the identity of the killers. “I believe you know the names of the killers of my father and I want you to tell me who they are.

    “You were on the army council of the IRA.”

    When Mr McGuinness denied being on the army council and insisted he had no knowledge of the killers, Mr Kelly labelled him a liar.

    “[My father] was loyal to this Irish Republic and I am loyal to him as a son and I’m going to get justice for him,” he said. “I want your comrades who committed this crime to hand themselves in to the gardaí.”

    Mr McGuinness said: “I don’t know who was responsible for the killing of your father, but I fully and absolutely sympathise with you.

    “I have been at the heart of a very important peace process in the North over the last 20 years which has brought conflict and violence and death to an end and I am going to continue with that work because that’s the work of peace.

    “This is in the past, you are heartbroken on account of it and my sympathy is 100% with you and your family.”

    Former army officer John McNamara also offered his sympathy but defended his decision to canvass for the Sinn Féin candidate.

    “I am canvassing for Martin McGuinness because he is a peacemaker,” he said.

    Mr Kelly told Mr McNamara: “You are spitting on my father’s grave.”

    Later, in Trim, Co Meath, Mr McGuinness said: “As a republican leader I have never and would never stand over attacks on the gardaí or the defence forces.

    “For many years now I have dedicated myself to building and upholding a peace process which will consign violent conflict to history. That peace process is recognised as one of the most successful in the world. We are now in a far better place.”

    Read more: http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/mcguinness-branded-a-liar-by-son-of-soldier-killed-in-ira-shoot-out-170306.html#ixzz1aT0uvsYX

  • Neil, it takes a lot of courage to confront a leader of a paramilitary organisation as such organisations bear many of the hallmarks of the Mafia. I hope Mr Kelly gets the support of his local community for taking such a brave stand.

    It’s also very sad to see a newspaper acting as a public relations agency instead of carrying out its core function and that applies to articles about politicians as well as to parapoliticians like Martin.

    There have been several manifestations of the IRA; the PRM is but one of them.

  • Mopping up the protest vote [joutube] – an easy thing to do when you don’t have to make the tough decisions eg when O’Dowd starts closing down our small rural schools.

    And Martin, the homeless need more than an invitation to the Aras for Christmas. Perhaps a significant number of the electorate do believe in Santa Claus.

  • Rory Carr

    “MARTIN McGUINNESS has been branded a liar…” screams the headline. Then we find in the body of the article that, instead of branding, “Mr Kelly [only]labelled him a liar.” Colourful stuff. Mr Kelly of course did neither.

    Nor did former army officer, John McNamara, who was canvassing with McGuinness, actually spit on the grave of Mr. Kelly’s father. But then Mr. Kelly was clearly either overwrought when he accused him of same or, more likely overrehearsed.

    If he was really interested in finding out who fired the shots which killed his father then he was asking the wrong supposed head of the wrong army. He might have applied for that information closer to home. His father was shot by his own panicking Irish Army colleagues which is why details have never been released on the calibre and manufacture of the fatal bullets, why there was no serious investigation into the shooting by defence forces of civilians in a car on the same evening and why no murder conviction has ever been successful. Simply put, there was no murder but rather death by misadventure due to the poor discipline of his own comrades.

  • Jimmy Sands

    Contemptible. Even Coco drew the line at that one.

  • Rory, here is a small portion of a transcript:

    DK: He was killed in Derrada Wood, Ballinamore, Co Leitrim 1983

    MMcG: Yes

    DK By Provisional IRA

    MMcG: Yes

    Martin denied that he knew the members’ names and also that he was on the Army Council. David called Martin a liar at least twice; he also asked Martin to get his comrades to hand themselves in to the Gardai. Martin failed to respond positively to that request, despite accepting that the kidnappers were PIRA members.

  • Jimmy Sands

    Interesting that he gave as his excuse the fact that he did not know their identities. Hopefully one of our alleged journalists will have the wit to ask whether he would give Mr. Kelly the information if he had it.

  • At 2:20 yesterday afternoon I posted a McGuinness Youtube video and entitled it “Mopping Up The Protest Vote”. Pat Leahy is making a similar point: Sinn Féin’s success in polls built on protest vote.

    Will those “lazy” Dublin journalists ask McGuinness how many rural schools his colleague John O’Dowd expects to close here?

  • Granni Trixie

    After SF success in local council elections in Derry,May 1985, MMG said, “The results are good but at the end of the day,it will be rthe cutting edge of the IRA which will bring freedom.” (Irish Irish Freedom Movement Handbook,3rd Edition)

    Interesting quote from someone purporting to be peacemaker ,having left the IRA around 1974?.

  • Granni Trixie, Comical Marty has produced an update in the style of the Monty Python Norwegian Blue:

    “As far I’m concerned the IRA are gone, the IRA are no more and there should be no need for Green Books of any description whatsoever”

    He didn’t get around to answering Miriam O’Callaghan’s follow-up questions: “How did you leave? Did you write a letter?” Miriam earlier had accused him of being ‘wishy washy’.

  • Limerick

    Granni,

    In 1994 when Adams and McGuinness were trying to sell the PIRA ceasefire to their drones it was McGuinness who was wheeled out to convince the hardliners. That was on the basis of his ‘sound military background’. Pretty strange if that background came to an abrupt end in 1974.

  • .. the line Vincent Browne was spouting earlier this week was McGuinness clearly wouldn’t want to swap a non job in the Aras with a proper job up North, that he didn’t want to win and that he was only venturing South to improve the profile of Sinn Fein.

  • Jimmy Sands

    All of this makes me wonder if he has stopped beating his wife. Someone should ask him.

    But that’s in the past. No-one’s interested. People are more interested in the courage and dedication he has shown in bringing an end to wifebeating in the McGuinness household.

  • What in the world is worth asking a question when you know in advance that the answer will be a lie. Was G.A. ever in the IRA? Did MMG ever have any part in murder?
    Pointing out the absurdity of asking such a question has, itself, now become verboten. Bah.

  • Jimmy Sands

    The absurdity lies not in the asking, but in the answer.

  • dwatch

    “All of this makes me wonder if he has stopped beating his wife. Someone should ask him.”

    If GA’s wife was ever to take pen to paper about her life with Mr Adams not only would this book be a best seller but it wouldn’t half open up a can of worms.

  • Rory Carr

    Likewise we await with great anticipation the details of Mrs DWatch’s long and happy married life.

  • Decimus

    Sinn Fein haven’t ruled out a McGuinness victory, but…they can rule it out now.

  • babyface finlayson

    Rory Carr
    “His father was shot by his own panicking Irish Army colleagues which is why details have never been released on the calibre and manufacture of the fatal bullets, why there was no serious investigation into the shooting by defence forces of civilians in a car on the same evening and why no murder conviction has ever been successful. Simply put, there was no murder but rather death by misadventure due to the poor discipline of his own comrades.”
    It’s an interesting theory. Have you any hard facts to back up this circumstantial evidence?

  • babyface finlayson,

    If you go to another recent thread about the murder of Pat Finucane, you can establish what counts as evidence on SOT.

  • babyface finlayson

    Joe
    There’s a lot of it about.
    When people make comments like these, they should remember to finish with a big emphatic ‘FACT’. That always helps.

  • Dixie Elliott

    Last night there was a fund raising event held in Derry for McGuinness’s Presidential campaign; various local entertainers gave their time free of charge…..

    However it appears that the same Martin McGuinness who people were giving their time freely to help fund turned up on Thursday night, after the Mansion House rally, at the Dublin restaurant of none other than the British celebrity chief Marco Pierre White. He had his entourage with him as well as the Dublin actor Colm Meaney.

    Ah but the fund raising last night might have just covered the bill.

    Lets look at Marco Pierre White, the British celebrity chef. He’s an ardent supporter of the Conservative Party. Perhaps Marty or Conor met and got to know him while attending the Tory Party conference?

    Pierre White also supports ‘Our Boys’ in Afghanistan…. http://www.marcopierrewhite.org/

    The Fools! The Fools! The Fools!

    Indeed they are…..

  • Jimmy Sands

    According to one account the entourage of the would-be “People’s President” ( (c) Brian Lenihan 1990) repaired afterwards to Lillie’s Bordello. It really is admirable how the average industrial wage can be made to stretch so far.

  • Jimmy Sands

    Incidentally, isn’t it a little odd that Coco should choose to launch his campaign in a city whose voters have so consistently and emphatically rejected him?