Monday, January 15, 2007

There is substantial evidence that a major crime was perpetrated within the Garda Siochana five years ago .
The evidence for this crime has certainly been available to senior Gardai ever since then , but no enquiry whatsoever has taken place , let alone any Garda being disciplined in connection with that crime .
By Vincent Browne and Derek Dunne .
From 'MAGILL' magazine , September 1983 .

The fact is that throughout 1976 and the early part of 1977 allegations of Garda brutality were common-place and the names of certain Gardai cropped up again and again in these allegations ; Amnesty International sent a team to Ireland in 1977 - they examined a total of 28 cases , seven of which related to persons arrested in connection with the Sallins mail train robbery . In its report to the Irish Government (sic- Leinster House) Amnesty stated :

" Allegations common to every case examined are that the victims were at various times beaten and punched , the most common targets being the ears , stomach and groin ; knocked or thrown against walls or furniture ; thrown from one officer to another ; kneed in the stomach and kicked . It was also commonly alleged that victims were pulled or swung by the hair ; had their arms twisted behind their backs while they were punched ; were spreadeagled against a wall and had their legs kicked apart so that they fell to the ground . In five cases detained persons alleged they were beaten with objects .

The consistency in the nature of allegations from persons arrested at different times and in different parts of the country must , in the opinion of Amnesty International , lend weight to their validity , as must the fact that during the past 18 months and longer the same (Garda) officers have been mentioned as being involved in maltreatment of suspects in reports made at different times in different parts of the country . "

Indeed , some members of the Gardai itself were uneasy enough about what was going on to raise their concerns with those higher-up the chain.......

A look at the political origins of the GAA .
By 'Celt' .
From 'IRIS' magazine , November 1982 .

In his letter agreeing to bestow patronage on the GAA , Dr. T. W. Croke (Archbishop of Cashel) wrote - " One of the most painful , let me assure you , and at the same time one of the most frequently recurring reflections that , as an Irishman , I am compelled to make in connection with the present aspect of things in this country , is derived from the ugly and irritating fact , that we are daily importing from England not only her manufactured goods , which we cannot help doing since she has practically strangled our own manufacturing appliances , but her fashions , her accents , her vicious literature , her music , her dances , her games also - to the utter discredit of our own grand national sports . "

Placing this sentiment in a clearly nationalist context , Dr. Croke continued - " Indeed if we continue travelling for the next score years in the same direction that we have been going in for some time past , condemning the sports that were practised by our forefathers , effacing our national features as though we were ashamed of them , we had better at once and publicly abjure our nationality , clap hands for joy at the sight of the Union Jack , and place 'England's bloody red' exultantly above the green . "

It was then in keeping with the founding philosophy of the GAA's figureheads that the association continually demonstrated support for the nationalist cause , with the revolutionary nationalist tendency in the GAA a strong , and often dominant , element.......

By Michael Farrell .
From 'MAGILL' magazine , June 1983 .

Mid-Ulster will be the real cockpit of this election : it has only a tiny nationalist majority but the fact that the Unionist vote is split between the Official Unionists and the DUP means it can still be won . The SDLP had a majority of 2,754 over Sinn Fein in the Assembly election but it was in Mid-Ulster that Sinn Fein so dramatically improved their vote in the Carrickmore by-election .

The SDLP candidate , Denis Haughey, is not the popular candidate they could have picked - he works in John Hume's MEP office and is about to join the Forum Secretariat : he is more of a bureaucrat than a local politician . Sinn Fein's Danny Morrison must have at least a fighting chance of replacing Owen Carron as Sinn Fein's MP west of the Bann .

There is one other constituency where the SDLP has a good chance of picking up a seat - South Down : it has been changed by the boundary commission but almost certainly has a small Unionist majority . For once a split vote may benefit the Nationalist camp . The DUP have nominated a candidate against the Official Unionist , Enoch Powell, and this was Sinn Fein's weakest constituency in the Assembly elections ; if the SDLP's candidate , Eddie McGrady, can hold most of the 84 per cent of the Nationalist vote which his party won in October he should take the seat and put an end to Enoch Powell's parliamentary career.......