Ombudsman’s Loughinisland investigation to be re run…

And at the High Court in Belfast, Al HUtchinson’s report into the Loughinisland killings has been quashed, and the new Police Ombudsman will open a fresh case…

  • galloglaigh
  • David Crookes

    If the rising generation is asked to live with a never-ending series of enquiries into things that happened long before its members were born, and if pensioners are going to be dragged out of retirement and tried as criminals for acts which some of them committed as teenagers, nobody will ever move on.

    The big story here is not the individual pursuit of justice and rectitude. The big story here is the dropping of enormous anchors into the mudbanks of the past when most of us were coming to believe that the ship was making for open seas.

    It wasn’t easy for all of us to see certain prisoners being released, but we saw the point of what was being done.

    What would have happened to West Germany if the victorious Allies had obsessively made the pursuit of Nazi criminals their chief concern until 1985?

    Sometimes the interest of the greater number is best served when the state pushes the reset button and says start again. Those who govern must be judicious.

    There will always be grieved individuals who honestly seek redress.

    Lawyers and journalists will always be at pains to make money out of their grief.

    It is the job of a government to ensure that the pursuit of individual redress does not disturb the public peace to a disproportionate degree. Here is the subtext of Psalm 75.

  • galloglaigh

    Sure if we’re going to start again tomorrow, I may go out a rob a bank today. Republican and loyalist combatants are being pursued, as should Crown force personnel. After all, as many a report has said, more than a few bad apples fell from the rotten tree.

    The problem with the Loughinisland case, and that of Bloody Sunday, is that it was state agents who fired state guns (alleged in the case of the UVF shooting). The truth of state sponsored murder needs to be forth-coming, or many more cases will go before a judge. And rightly so.

  • Kevsterino

    I think once you make a report as faulty as Hutchinson’s, the only choice is to try to correct it. Can’t let that report stand as the authority on what happened.

  • sonofstrongbow

    Phew! Thank goodness things are getting back to business as usual at PONI.

    Now that that off-script Canuck has gone let’s hope it’ll be Ourselves O!Loan stylee once again.

    You know those Canadians are a funny lot. It’s the wide open spaces over there, addles the brain or something.

  • galloglaigh [4.42]It is only right that loughinisland report is binned as it is taited beyond rescue, so logically all the reports put out by Hutchinson are similarly undermined in credibility and McGurks, and Claudy reports compiled by AH should be done all over again. No doubt we’ll be hearing much gnashing and grinding of teeth from the usual suspects in the DUP and TUV over the Bloody Sunday cases, but we’ll just tune out of them as we know their real motives for opposing justice in nationalist fatalities at the State’s hand It goes with the territory. .

  • Mick Fealty

    Well, the issue is about how you define collusion.

    Ed (who was well liked and trusted amongst Republicans enough before his appointment) disagrees with another Canuck, Judge Cory, on the definition of ‘collusion’, whereas his predecessor Nuala O’Loan was happy to take passive involvement under the term.

    I would imagine it will now be re-run on the maximal version.

    No one going to pick up the ball ‘thrown in’ by Mr Crooks?

  • Mc Slaggart

    “What would have happened to West Germany if the victorious Allies had obsessively made the pursuit of Nazi criminals their chief concern until 1985?”

    Justice! Why do you ask? Do you think the West Germans wanted them left alone?

  • galloglaigh


    Would that be the ‘thrown ball’ where Mr Crooks argues against pensioners being dragged out of retirement, tried as criminals for acts which some of them committed as teenagers, and that nobody will ever move on?

    Gerry McGeough and Marian Price, not that I agree with anything they’ve been convicted of, are both almost pensioners. McGeough was 23 when Samuel Brush was shot. Does the ‘thrown ball’ only apply to Crown force pensioners’, or does it apply to all pensioners with a combatant past?

  • Mick Fealty

    People are asking why Billy got a red McS… Well, it’s because he refused to engage in conversation (and it’s something both you and he have form on).

    Now please, offer a proper challenge, rather than using a leading question to ascribe an inferior motive.

    In other words, play the ball, not the man!

  • Alias

    “No one going to pick up the ball ‘thrown in’ by Mr Crooks?”

    Yup. “Let the guilty escape justice” campaigns usually originate with the guilty. Those who promote them thereafter are re-selling another’s pup.

    Who exactly who needs to “move on”? Most folks in NI went about their business as normal, completely untouched by violence, as a small number of organised murder gangs went about their business under the cover of darkness, usually shooting an unarmed man in the back of the head as he drove his car into his driveway after a day’s work.

    It isn’t a post-Nazi Germany after a world war: it is a small number of murderers, and a larger number of citizens who are still awaiting justice.

  • Mc Slaggart


    You asked someone to “No one going to pick up the ball ‘thrown in’ by Mr Crooks?”

    Now my answer was brief and to the point. I did not call “Mr Crooks” anything or did I attack him in any way. My Question was/is not “leading” it is the one anyone who understood Germany to any extent would have to ask. If you watch German news their is normally something about their Nazi past covered about every 3 days. The rise of the Nazi groups in the old east Germany is scary for them.

  • Mick Fealty

    See Godwin’s Law, including the abuses of invoking Godwin’s Law:

  • sonofstrongbow

    A police officer who ‘handles’ an informant when the informant is involved in crime that he does not admit to will be classed as colluding with said criminal. No matter it’s the police officer’s job to interact with such individuals, no matter what the cop knew he is tainted by association. By some.

    The same people will raise merry hell if the same guilt by association is applied to lawyers, politicians or others who ‘associate’ with unsavoury types.

    Collusion, in common with many aspects of the so-called Troubles, is a take-your-pick concept that ebbs and flows depending on who is being discussed and one’s own political leanings.

    In the spirit of fiscal rectitude, and harmonious relationships, I offer a solution. Have the victims’ groups write their own reports. They will get the reports they want and the HET, PONI, evidence beyond a reasonable doubt etc can all be conveniently binned. Simples.

  • Mick Fealty

    I think that’s the view Al took SoS… What we’re seeing here is legal activism, which is fine by me since the victims in all cases deserve answers.

    I’m not sure I’d like to see the results of some form of legal activism which was aimed at pushing back in the opposite direction.

  • Mc Slaggart

    “Mick Fealty (profile) 20 December 2012 at 6:16 pm
    See Godwin’s Law, including the abuses of invoking Godwin’s Law:

    If that is addressed to me I am left to wonder why did you not post it under David Crookes post as he was the person who raised the issue of “Nazi criminals” ?

    I ignored his post until you made a point of asking people to comment on it.

  • Mick Fealty


    Just relax and talk… enough of the ambush stuff… we have NI Forum for that… 😉

  • son of sam

    I note from the T V reports that Caitriona Ruane is attaching herself to the Loughinisland families group .This is hardly an exclusively Sinn Fein issue as one would naturally have assumed the campaign would have attracted cross party support .Perhaps it is just that the Shinners are better at utilising photo opportunities !

  • David Crookes

    Mc Slaggart, you say,

    ‘If you watch German news there is normally something about their Nazi past covered about every three days.’

    Not exactly my experience, and anyway, do we want that?

    If youseuns are going to refer by name to contributors who use their real names, youse should stick to forenames, and then youse’ll be less likely to make spelling mistakes. I dedicate this posting to the memory of Jadwiga Herchen.

    Edel sei der Mensch,
    Hilfreich und gut…..

  • sonofstrongbow


    Of course victims deserve answers. The difficulties seem to arise when the answers provided do not agree with beliefs the victims have accrued.

    Both De Silva and Saville produced answers. Unfortunately in both cases some still maintain that they were shortchanged.

    As with Bloody Sunday, Finucane and now Loughinisland ‘political’ representatives have attached themselves to the campaigns. This would not in itself be problem except that the movement they represent has itself a history as a victim-generating group (I believe ‘combatants’ is the nomenclature de jour).

    The result is that ‘justice’ campaigns take on the hue of political campaigns.

    Nationalists often rail against ‘political policing”. Why no similar discomfort with political victimhood?

  • Mc Slaggart

    David Crookes


  • David Crookes

    Bless you, Mc Slaggart, here’s a wee gem for ye.

    Ein männlicher Briefmark erlebte
    Was Schönes, bevor er klebte.
    Er war von einer Prinzessin beleckt.
    Da war die Liebe in ihm erweckt.

    Er wollte sie wiederküssen,
    Da hat er verreisen müssen.
    So liebte er sie vergebens.
    Das ist die Tragik des Lebens!

  • Mick Fealty


    That is because its legal activism. There won’t be an end to it. Unionists don’t generally do it, though the Omagh case suggests there’s a possible civil route to court against the human rights breaches of non state actors too.

  • sonofstrongbow

    “Legal activism” is a polite way to describe what’s going on. At the end of the day it will amount to little more than some newspaper copy and some optics of Shinners putting on their pained and concerned faces.

    You’ve got to feel for the investigatory bodies. Sometime down the line the old evidence hurdle will have to be addressed and the riders will fall.

    Bloody Sunday is a case in point. If, and its very debatable, anyone is ever charged and put before a court an abuse of process motion will be the first thing on the defence agenda. Cue disappointment all round (sans the lawyers’ bank managers of course) and another opportunity for more wailing against ‘Brit justice’.

    I wonder if at some juncture someone has ever said to victims that this is just more building of false hopes? I expect if they have they were shouted down.

  • son of sam

    Rosemary Craig(law lecturer) on U T V Live tonight did warn against excessive expectations on Loughinisland and similar cases.Son of Strongbow is certainly right in relation to Bloody Sunday.The only winners as always will be the lawyers.

  • galloglaigh

    The lawyers maybe be winners in financial terms, but the families are the winners in terms of justice. The real winners in all these cases, will be those who are shaded by national security, and the British government’s cloak of impunity.

  • Old Mortality

    Why should the lawyers be winners in any terms? It taints the whole exercise, as we have seen with Bloody Sunday.
    I can’t understand why the families are so meekly silent on this. You’d almost start to suspect they were getting bungs from the lawyers.

  • galloglaigh


    I’m not agreeing with it, but lawyers generally do make a lot of money, no matter what case or country they’re in. The families were quite vocal yesterday, perhaps you missed the news last night?

    To suggest that brown envelopes are involved, is an attempt to make the families look like money grabbers. It was never about money, that’s a PUL argument. It’s about justice and convictions, not money.

  • son of sam

    I think the point Son of Strongbow and Rosemary Craig (last night) were making is that there are innumerable hurdles before a soldier or soldiers appear in the Crown Court.Even then there would be various pre-trial applications .As far as Loughinisland is concerned ,we must await the new Police Ombudsman’s report and see where that takes everyone .The delivery of justice will not be immediate but the families have been patient and they deserve honest answers.

  • sonofstrongbow

    To postulate that it is not “about money” is nonsense. Of course it’s about money, public money, and how it is best spent.

    Thankfully we will not be talking about anything like the Saville millionaire generator, or if you like a hospital or a couple of schools, just a few dozen operations, teachers or old age care provision this time.

    Neither is it about ‘justice’, that all too often abused word. If it were so those involved would not align themselves so closely with Sinn Fein and its blood soaked antecedents.

    It is a political campaign and one of its primary objectives is to keep the focus on the past looking in one direction only. The victims’ families are either complicit in this or startlingly naive about what’s going on. The argument that the families can’t pick their supporters is only true to a point. You can pick who you attend meetings with or stand beside for the camera.

    Not that that or the money issue will sway some. One suspects they cheered all the way to the bomb-bank as they took pleasure in ‘Brit’ government money going up in smoke. No matter that it halted or curtailed spending on infrastrture for more than three decades.

    That ‘justice’ will not be served probably worries them equally as much.

  • galloglaigh

    Again SOS, I’ll repeat for you, it’s only about money for the PUL. Had the MOD and the British government behaved appropriately 20, 30 ,40 years ago, no millionaire making inquiries and trials would have been needed.

    Unfortunately for the public purse that’s not the case. Either way, the cost of justice is down to the state, and not those murdered by the state. To the families it’s about justice and possible convictions, not money.

    You could argue that keeping Gerry McGeough, Marian Price, and now Martin Corey in prison, would cost enough a year to build a primary school. So would you like to see them taken out of prison to save a few bob?

    Would you also like to see the British army brought back from all international acts of aggression and occupation? Given that the war in Afghanistan alone costs almost £2bn a year, we’d have a fair few hospital wards and cancer centres for that money. The citizens of those countries under occupation might also be glad of that, as ‘our boys’ who ran amok in Derry and Ballymurphy, are the ‘older brothers’ of the regiments currently murdering innocent men women and children in their countries.

  • See how much simpler a peace and reconciliation commission on the South African model would have been. All over in a few years.