“Statement needed from Gerry Adams on Sinn Féin claims re Garda Donohoe”

And five days after that extraordinary press briefing, Niall Collins of Fianna Fail says Gerry Adams needs to answer questions about what he knows of the murderers of Garda Aidan Donohoe. This literally just into Slugger’s inbox:

“This media briefing is a serious development. A senior official working at the heart of the Sinn Féin political operation claims that he knows for a fact the identity of Detective Donohoe’s killers. In addition, he claims that the same individuals were behind the murder of Paul Quinn.

“Inexplicably, since publication of the report, the Sinn Féin leadership has been entirely silent on the matter. Given the widespread national revulsion at the killing of Detective Donohoe and indeed his own comments at the time, it is important that Deputy Adams come forward and confirm that he has spoken to his colleague, that this individual has given statements to the Gardaí and PSNI investigators, and confirm when these statements were made. I fully expected such a statement following publication of the story, but none came.

“In the course of his briefing, the Sinn Féin official also sought to undermine the integrity of Paul Quinn’s family’s search for justice, claiming that the Garda Donohoe’s murderers were members of their campaign and indeed that their slain 21 year old son was an ‘associate’ of the killers; this is despite the fact that Mr Quinn was killed six years before the County Louth ambush. Mr Quinn’s family have properly dismissed the slur, claiming that it is just the latest chapter in a malicious whispering campaign by Sinn Féin that they have had to endure for years.

“Deputy Adams should also make it clear whether he stands by these remarks and if not, issue an immediate apology to Mr Quinn’s family on behalf of his party.”

, , ,

  • Is there anything new here Mick are you just giving the Fianna Fail press office a dig-out?

  • Big Boss

    I cant understand why this news hasnt made it big in the North or why its been left to FF to put pressure on SF. Surely the SDLP or even the Unionist parties would have been running with this story. It hasnt even got a mention on Nolan!

  • Carrickmoreman

    “claiming that the Garda Donohoe’s murderers were members of their campaign and indeed that their slain 21 year old son was an ‘associate’ of the killers; this is despite the fact that Mr Quinn was killed six years before the County Louth ambush.

    I have no idea who killed either person, and I think the murder of Mr. Quinn was specifically heinous. However, the quote above doesn’t sit right to me. Hasn’t it been acknowledged that Mr. Quinn did act as a driver of (illegal?) diesel trucks? Of course, that doesn’t mean he was a “gang leader”, for all we know he did it once or twice for a little money. However, I think you could say he “associated” with these people, if indeed he and Garda Donohoe were killed by this “gang”.

  • FDM

    “it is important that Deputy Adams come forward and confirm that he has spoken to his colleague”

    Isn’t it more important that the police talk to him.

    Today is a bad news day for the DUP.

    Ruth Patterson is up in front of m’Lord surrounded by her senior elected DUP cheerleaders to answer offensive communications charge. M’Lord is jeered by her supporters and he clears the court.

    The BT and Thedetail release information on massive shortcomings in the equality [frankly sectarian] of allocation of housing in North Belfast, all in DUP Redsky McCauslands watch.

    And we get an article SF bashing asking Gerry to answer questions that are best put to the individual involved by the police authorities. If it was sub-judice could he say a word anyway?

  • Kevsterino

    I can’t recall a single instance when politicians making hay from a murder has assisted in the apprehension and successful prosecution of the perpetrators.

    Mr. Quinn’s murder was barbarous. The pain of the family, knowing how he was killed, is beyond my comprehension in its scale.

    As for the Donohoe murder, it is my understanding the police in the Republic and the PSNI have a very good idea of the identities of the 5 man team, who fired the shotgun, who the leader is, and are busy putting together a case suitable for extradition hearings.

    The purpose of the Deputy’s questions of Adams appear to be pure political theatre, doing nothing to move the case closer to prosecution.

  • Alias

    “A senior official working at the heart of the Sinn Féin political operation claims that he knows for a fact the identity of Detective Donohoe’s killers. In addition, he claims that the same individuals were behind the murder of Paul Quinn.”

    Either the PSF party was telling lies when it was slandering the dead or it was telling the truth when it was slandering the dead.

    If the PSF party was telling the truth, then, as Deputy Collins asked, why have the party’s officials not passed on their ‘factual’ information to the Gardaí?

    Either way, why is PSF party slandering Paul Quinn if the party or its associates were not involved in his murder? And it the party’s associates were involved in his murder were they also involved in the murder of Garda Donohoe since, according to the PSF party, both murders were comitted by the same gang?

  • FDM

    *she clears the court.

  • son of sam

    Interesting paragraph in Jim Gibney’s party political column in today’s Irish News.
    “In effect this is a power struggle between a new dispensation and those like minister Ni Chuilin(who are eager to help people denied truth) and those in the dark recesses,the discredited “old ” establishment ,who continue to deny truth and justice to families of victims,”
    As Gibney seems to be a trusted part of the Sinn Fein hierarchy presumably this article reflects party policy.Is therefore his party “eager to help people(such as the Quinn family) denied truth” or or does it “continue to deny truth and justice to families of victims”?
    Surely it’s time for this doublethink on the part of S F to end!

  • John Ó Néill

    The Irish Mirrorran a story (just to pick one) by Emma McMenamy stating:

    A suspect in the murder of Detective Garda Adrian Donohoe is “absolutely delighted” he’s going to be a dad.
    The gang leader, who is one of five young men gardai believe to be behind the killing, has been telling pals he can’t wait to be a role model for his baby.
    Originally from South Armagh, the thug moved across the Border to Co Louth with his girlfriend last year.

    She goes on to include quotes from his friends etc. Pretty specific and standard red top stuff. Has Niall Collins called for Garda to interview her? Or is this just standard tabloid politics from Fianna Fáil – another neat example of how their sole interest in the north is to attack Sinn Féin. It’s as much a dig out for the DUP press office as half their front liners are in court backing up Ruth Patterson.

  • cynic2

    ” a power struggle between a new dispensation and those like minister Ni Chuilin(who are eager to help people denied truth) and those in the dark recesses,the discredited “old ” establishment ,who continue to deny truth and justice to families of victims,”

    But only some victims of course. And as such is she not just another party apparatchik / soldier pursing the sectarian war by other means? And what about the rights of those members of the security forces involved whose Article 2 rights may have been trampled over by any unredacted release of personal information by a Grandstanding Minister

    Has the Minister come clean to her own victims? Has her former special advisor admitted her full guilt? How many SF MLAs have admitted that they shot, blew up or murdered people?

    If she wants this new dispensation then why not let us throw all the files fully open so everyone can see who was working for whom and what intelligence there was in each case. We can then see everything that was known about each case. Who fingered who and why? Who was involved and not involved in killings and what motivated them? Who ordered them and why?

    But in truth that will never happen as SFs handlers in MI5 will protect their assets and the stability of the process demands that they never be held to account.

    Coming from a party that cannot even bring itself to admit that its leaders caused the deaths of many of the hunger strikers for political gains and whose president says he was never in the IRA, a “new dispensation” sounds like a new wrapper on old policies like ‘parity of esteem’ and all the other twaddle that was mouthed and then forgotten

  • cynic2

    “Either the PSF party was telling lies when it was slandering the dead or it was telling the truth when it was slandering the dead.”

    I find it touching that even after all this time you can ever assume any link between SF Press Officers and the truth

  • Alias

    I don’t. But most folks ‘down here’ would be utterly sickened to observe just how amoral and debased the party actually is. They may have read the family of Paul Quinn and Robert McCartney complaining of such despicable methods from the Shinners but they’d always have assumed those reports were overblown – mainly because they have been conditioned to downplay them for ‘the sake of the process’. Now they have the Shinner party’s PR department caught in the act – and that’s a different ball game.

  • cynic2

    “Now they have the Shinner party’s PR department caught in the act ”

    ….and on tape

    The media in the North are much less robust. UTV is steadily dumbing down and wont do anything that might annoy customers while BBC is browbeaten by organised campaigns of complaints staged managed by the party accusing individuals of bias.

    And of course if any reporter goes too far in their critique of any of the parties they will be cast into exile and unable to interview party members again. They are such nice people!!!

  • New Yorker

    Why doesn’t Adams take a little trip to South Armagh as he did with Brian Stack’s sons to bring some needed clarity?

  • Mick Fealty

    Ulick,

    The most interesting thing is that no one in the northern press has touched it. I’ve been checking all week, and nothing.

    No one on this thread argues that these are legimate questions. And now FF have picked it up they will almost certainly get hearing the south.

    Also worth noting the fact the northern press have exerted so much effort and attention on a row between Sammy and Peter, and yet zip about this story.

    I’ll be interested to see whether this is still on FF’s mind with the restart of the Dail on 18 September…

  • son of sam

    Interestingly in a postscript to his blog today,Jude Collins reckons that “the mainstream media is heavily weighted against republicanism “.It doesn’t seem like it according to Micks post above.

  • Comrade Stalin

    The funny thing to me is that the unionists and their crazy antics up here are blocking out all the SF bad news stories.

    Back a month or so ago you had the discovery of a major IRA arms cache. The 12th prevented most coverage of that. Now we’ve a story about SF covering up murders. Pushed to one side because of Ronseal Ruth, the Maze and the ongoing speculation over Robinson’s leadership.

  • gendjinn

    The most interesting thing is that no one in the northern press has touched it. I’ve been checking all week, and nothing.

    That is quite odd alright. I wonder why that is?

    It’s a good thing we have blogs to cover the news the various papers, tvs & radios ignore.

  • gendjinn

    Comrade,

    What does the July arms cache find have to do with SF?

  • fordprefect

    Paul Quinn’s and Robert McCartney’s killings were of course abhorrent, no ifs or buts, they were totally wrong, full stop! What I’ve noticed with the media, be it tv, papers or blogs, is that somehow “republican” killings are more despicable than others. Does everyone on here forget about the “disappearance” “killing” of Lisa Dorrian? Less than a month after the McCartney killing this young woman went missing and has never been found. According to well placed sources in the media, the LVF killed her and threw her body into the sea. Is she not counted as one of the disappeared? If not, why not? Or is that accolade only reserved for republicans?

  • Mick Fealty

    Most of the victims in Derg Valley went without justice too, ford, something which was almost certainly discounted in the public debate over the last few weeks.

    The story is not about the killing though, it’s about level of knowledge or pretended knowledge at a very senior level in one of our most senior political parties.

    CS,

    Exactly the point made by Richard Reed last December: http://goo.gl/0YTx6y

  • ArdoyneUnionist

    gendjinn 23 August 2013 at 12:46 am

    Comrade,

    “What does the July arms cache find have to do with SF”?

    They were all over the media at the time of IRA disarmament telling us that their arms were put beyond use.
    Now we find they aren’t, so if the shinners/provos can take the pats on the back when they give an allegedly good news story they can take the flack when there is flack to be given, or in Gerry’s case disappearing. Now there is a story the disappeared.

  • son of sam

    I note that the Irish News finally carries the story today.

  • cynic2

    Yes…and isn’t it quite in here. hardly a Shinner supporter to be seen

  • Hedley Lamarr

    ArdoyneUnionist- It was also all over the media that the Quartermaster General of the PIRA had split to form the RIRA, reportedly taking an amount of the PIRA arms with him.

    The IICD stated in September 2005 after the PIRA’s final act of decommissioning that their inventory of the arms put beyond use tallied with the estimates given to them by the security forces from both jurisdictions.

    In 2006 the IICD stated that the security forces in Northern Ireland had intelligence that some individuals or groups within the PIRA had retained a range of weapons but there was no intelligence to suggest this was substantial and there was no suggestion that these arms were retained with the approval of the PIRA’s leadership. The Garda informed them that they themselves had no similar intelligence of any retained arms.

    So, the news of arms finds which originated from the PIRA is no surprise given the split and the fact that the statement from the IICD about PIRA decommissioning was always qualified with “arms under their control”.

  • gendjinn

    ArdoyneUnionist,

    Hedley has answered your point.

    The entire rationale behind unionist demands for decommissioning was the knowledge that this was forbidden by the IRA constitution and would dramatically increase the likelihood of an IRA split. If there was a big enough split then unionism would have an excuse to ditch talks with SF as they could no longer deliver an end to republican violence.

    I recommend reading Ed Moloney’s “A Secret History of the IRA” – which really should be titled “A Secret History of the Peace Process”. It details and explains the internal maneuverings of SF & PIRA from 1982 to the GFA.

  • gapothenorth

    Carrickmoreman, it has not been suggested by anyone other than Provo spinners that Paul Quinn was involved in anything illegal, which is in any case irrelevant for all not involved in justifying brutal murder.

    The SF press man was merely trying to revive the fairy story put about by Conor Murphy and others at the time that there was a criminal gang (other than the Provos) operating in South Armagh. An Garda nailed the lie in March 2008:

    “Senior Garda sources in Monaghan have contacted the Northern Standard to state that a story on the front page of last week’s issue in relation to the Paul Quinn murder investigation is inaccurate. A garda spokesperson stated that no major breakthrough relating to the exposure of a crime web involving a gang of ‘untouchables’ has been made in the investigation.

    The gardai wish to stress that they are not investigating any criminal activities, or individuals or groups involved in such activities, in the context of the Quinn murder inquiries. There is no connection between the murder probe and any gang of criminals or untouchables, the spokesperson emphasised. While a ‘low level’ criminal was questioned in relation to minor incidents, this had nothing to do with the Paul Quinn case.

    The 21-year-old was beaten to death by a gang of men with iron bars at a farm shed in Tullycoora, near Oram, Co. Monaghan on October 20th last. Since then the family has mounted a high-profile campaign to bring the killers to justice. It has been alleged that members or ex-members of the Provisional IRA ordered or were involved in the murder, but Sinn Fein has denied this.”

    In any event, why would this imaginary gang have murdered Paul only to join his family’s campaign for justice? SF got involved in the Quinn case of its own accord. The family made no accusations of any kind against the party, but properly complained about named spokespersons denigrating the memory of their murdered son.

  • fordprefect

    Mick

    Fair enough point. We all know the people who said, they were never in the IRA or left it in 1974, but never killed anyone etc. etc. etc. (By the way, do p/u/l people on here understand the howls of laughter and derision that are given full pelt every time one or both of the above statements are uttered, in the r/n/c population?). Anyway, I don’t think the victims in the Derg Valley, as you call them, were discounted Mick because every time I put the news on I kept hearing about the “controversial” parade in Castlederg. Never heard that once said about the parade past the Ardoyne shops, contentious maybe, but not “controversial”. As I explained above, I have no time for “politicians” of whatever hue denying this that or the other and I understand where you are coming from, but, I’m sure there are people in the special branch of the PSNI/RUC who know rightly what happened to Lisa Dorrian as they have enough touts in those groups (maybe covering their backs?). Like I said, would you and everyone else on here class Lisa Dorrian as one of the “disappeared”? And if not, why not?

  • Barnshee

    Surely everyone is aware of the invisible barrier around SF which deflects any attempts at association with murder and bombing. Mind the ricochet.

  • Kevsterino

    Sinn Fein have a place at the political table in Northern Ireland because people voted for them, just like everybody else.

    It isn’t deflection, Barnshee. Sinn Fein hasn’t advocated physical force republicanism for more than 15 years. Peaceful and democratic means only has been working for them. That is apparently the rub.

    The Provisional IRA has left the stage. Loyalism hasn’t been able to adjust to the new dispensation.

  • Mick Fealty

    True enough. I think there’s a tendency to scale up individual details into wider shock stories about the unreliability or even lack of leadership of whatever outgroup you don’t like.

    But the important stuff is nearly always contain the divergent detail. Besides, as we argued in A Long Peace?, arms handed in can be replaced.

    It’s the actions that matter. That’s why some clarity on this briefing would be so useful.

  • Kevsterino

    I read the articles, Mick, and don’t understand the Gerry Adams angle. I would think if anyone can lend clarity to the briefing is the Belfast guy they are quoting, not Gerry Adams.

    The articles are confusing though, with many ins and outs and he said this and he said that. So convoluted as to be useless.

    It is almost deliberate, as confusing as it is.

  • Hedley Lamarr

    gapothenorth- “it has not been suggested by anyone other than Provo spinners that Paul Quinn was involved in anything illegal, which is in any case irrelevant for all not involved in justifying brutal murder.”

    I think the confusion about illegality may also stem from print and television media outlets suggesting he associated with fuel smugglers and also the fact that he was a truck driver. Maybe people put 2 and 2 together and got 5.

  • Mick Fealty

    Kev,

    He’s the party president (ie, the guy who is most likely to know everything that happens in the party name), and the most senior party rep in Dail Eireann.

    FF are calling him to answer to the alleged remarks of one very senior gatekeeper for the dFM. You do not get to Martin McG, except through Mark McClernon.

    And as Valerie Robinson’s article in yesterday’s (ie, Friday’s) Irish News notes…

    If Donal McIntyre is being honest (and so far there no evidence that he is being economical avec le actualité), those dodgy maths only have a single source…

  • Comrade Stalin

    gendjinn:

    What does the July arms cache find have to do with SF?

    The arms in question once belonged to Sinn Féin’s paramilitary wing and were supposed to have been decommissioned.

    I think most of us (even unionists, privately) are aware that there is no way the IRA, with details of its arms inventory known only to a handful of indviduals, could possibly hope to decommission all of it. But still, the unionists could have had some fun with it. It’s an easy way to press buttons and put republicans on the defensive.

    The entire rationale behind unionist demands for decommissioning was the knowledge that this was forbidden by the IRA constitution and would dramatically increase the likelihood of an IRA split.

    It’s amusing to hear you talking about the IRA constitution as if it was a barrier to the IRA leadership (=Adams and his contemporaries) doing what they wanted.

    The IRA split – if you can call a handful of lunatics breaking off a much larger whole a split – occurred not because of some pedantic intellectual quibbling over the rulebook but because this group of people wanted to continue the “war” – alongside, of course, their extensive “business interests” in Dublin and other parts of Ireland.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Regarding the part about the IICD and a tally … I doubt that every single bullet and gram of semtex was accurately accounted for. I doubt either the IRA or the British knew exactly how much of everything they had.

    The IICD, the IRA, and the British probably adopted a best-effort approach and I’m sure all three approached the matter in good faith.

  • gendjinn

    Comrade,

    Fair enough, it is correct it was a potential Unionist opportunity to throw mud at SF.

    It’s amusing to hear you talking about the IRA constitution as if it was a barrier to the IRA leadership (=Adams and his contemporaries) doing what they wanted.

    Why is it amusing? It was a significant obstacle that required significant effort and finessing to surmount. Adams et al did not have the votes to change it at an IRA convention. Attempting to change it, succeed or fail, would dramatically increase the likelihood and size of a split. The whole effort of the peace processors from 1982 onwards was to bring the entire movement with them, not have a split which would keep the conflict going for another generation.

    The fact that the actual split was so small is testament to luck and skillful laying of groundwork by Adams et al. Had decommissioning not been pushed by the Unionists/British it is possible, if not likely, that the split would have been smaller and taken less arms. The arms would have been dumped as they had after the Border campaign, SF and the PIRA would be in exactly the same position they are today.

  • Neil

    Interesting that we have a cache of Loyalist weapons found in Belfast yesterday. Of course it won’t surprise anyone as Loyalists haven’t decommissioned and continue murdering and more recently issuing death threats to protect their drugs rackets. But they aren’t Republicans so you’ll be waiting a long time for AU to express any concerns, no he’ll be focussing his attention on the IRA. The one group that actually has decommissioned, and ignoring the murderous, drug dealers from his own part of the world who are very much an active blight in society today.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Adams et al did not have the votes to change it at an IRA convention.

    Doesn’t the fact that the IRA, um, actually did decommission their arms indicate either that the constitution, in the end, wasn’t an issue ?

    I’ve no problem with the idea that the republican leadership took a lot of risks in order to move the IRA to where it eventually ended up. On the other hand, anyone with common sense could see that the IRA were not going to accomplish their objectives through physical force and that Adams was offering the best way out.

  • Comrade Stalin

    Neil,

    It’s interesting, the most the DUP representative for the area could come up with was that it was a shame they were found next to a school.

    16 pistols and 800 rounds sounds like a lot.

  • tacapall

    Indeed Neil im surprised Mick hasn’t picked up on that little nugget yet but Im sure he’s waiting on the PSNI confirming that they are actually loyalist weapons and there is no possibility they were planted there by Sinn Fein.

  • FDM

    Comrade Stalin 25 August 2013 at 1:40 pm .

    16 pistols and 800 rounds sounds like a lot.

    —————————-

    It is a lot. One muppet with a handful of guns and a heart full of hate killed sixteen kids and an adult in a school near here and he had absolutely no reason or grounds for doing so.

    Contrast that to the lunatics in the UVF/UDA/LVF/RHC who have hearts brimming with hate for Catholics and who have had no problem extending their campaign to attack kids trying to go to school in North Belfast before. This year they opted to paint their agenda right up to the kids school gates.

    MI5/police need to stop using the these drug dealing murderous sectarian parasites as their means of controlling the streets to a simmering level of acceptable intimidation and violence.

    16 friggin’ handguns and 800 rounds? That is a lot of dead people.

  • Comrade Stalin

    I thought it was a lot too, especially when you consider that loyalist paramilitaries in the past number of years have generally been using handguns and firing one or two shots to kill. 800 rounds would keep them going for a lifetime. Can’t believe they’re so stupid as to keep that amount of stuff stashed in only one place.

  • Comrade Stalin

    One muppet with a handful of guns and a heart full of hate killed sixteen kids and an adult in a school near here and he had absolutely no reason or grounds for doing so.

    What’s this you’re referring to ? It sounds like the Dunblane massacre, but that was in Scotland.

  • FDM

    I did not want to refer to it directly. I think Scotland is near here. However ‘near’ can be rather subjective.

  • Reader

    Comrade Stalin: Can’t believe they’re so stupid as to keep that amount of stuff stashed in only one place.
    They’re stupid enough, all right; but a homogeneous stash like that seems more likely to be a delivery consignment than a working hoard.