Monday, December 06, 2004

IRELAND , JANUARY 15th , 1920 : ELECTIONS .......

....... when they failed to get the results they wanted in the 15th January 1920 Elections in Ireland , Westminster went to 'Plan B' - they called-in British Army General 'Sir' Nevil Macready .......

Macready was appointed ' Commander-in-Chief' of the British Forces in Ireland ; he was known to be in favour of martial law and the imposition of a complete military dictatorship on the island . In December 1920 , 'Sir' Macready told his political masters in Westminster that his " military governors " in Ireland had been given 'permission' " to inflict punishments ..." on the local population following any IRA operation in that same area -

- " Punishments will only be carried out on the authority of the Infantry Brigadier who , before taking action , will satisfy himself that the people concerned were , owing to their proximity to the outrage or their known political tendencies , implicated in the outrage . " ('1169...' comment - this was , in effect , 'carte blanche' to the British military to do as they liked in Ireland .)

Macready continued - " The punishment will be carried out as a Military Operation and the reason why it is being done will be publicly proclaimed . " However , as a 'PR stunt' , in the belief that he could portray himself as something other than the vicious bastard he was , Macready implemented a policy by which those to be " punished " were given one hours notice ....... !


By Vincent Browne .

First published in 'Magill' magazine , April 1982 , pages 4 and 5 .
Re-published here in 8 parts .
(5 of 8).

In spite of this persuasive evidence of Garda ill-treatment a statement made by Nicky Kelly , while in custody , was held by the Special Criminal Court to have been made voluntarily (!) ; the Court accepted Garda evidence that there had been no ill-treatment of any of the defendants and insinuated that any injuries they received must have been self-inflicted .

On the basis of a statement made by Nicky Kelly while in Garda custody and on that evidence alone Kelly was convicted of charges in connection with robbery and sentenced to 12 years penal servitude .

The Special Criminal Court's acceptance of Garda assurances that statements were given voluntarily , when there is substantial evidence to show that there was a considerable degree of coercive pressure involved is not unusual .

It is one of the major defects of that court and , to a large extent , an inevitable defect - for the repeated exposure of Justices to Garda 'evidence' versus " subversive " claims , conditions the members of the court in favour of the Gardai .......


By Derek Dunne .
First published in 'Magill' magazine , October 1985 , pages 9,10 and 11.
Re-published here in 13 parts.
(7 of 13).

A copy of an affidavit , purporting to be John Patrick Quinn's affidavit in the High Court in Dublin was produced ; no application had been made to the High Court to have this made available . Legal counsel for Quinn , Michael Fisher , immediately took steps to ensure that the British authorities should not have access to the original affidavit without both parties being present .

Quinn applied for bail and was granted it on two sureties of £2,500 each ; Detective Barnes objected to bail on the grounds that Quinn would commit further offences and he would be unlikely to turn up for his hearing . Magistrate Norma Negus responded to this argument by telling Detective Barnes - " We're not in Dublin now . We're dealing with the Bail Act . " The prosecution were accused of " acting in bad faith , abusing the process of the court and inexcusable procrastination . "

Michael Fisher expressed fears at that point that John Patrick Quinn would be charged with offences other than those he had been extradited to face .......