<img src=" PADDY COONEY’S ARMY …….
Not since the earliest days of the State has the role of the Irish Army (sic) been under such intense scrutiny . And not since the war years has it had such a forceful political master as Patrick Mark Cooney .
From ‘The Phoenix’ magazine , 3 February 1984 .
Paddy Cooney himself stated in Leinster House in June 1983 – ” Theoretically , the primary role of the (FS) Defence Forces is to defend the territory of the State against external aggression , but in practise its role consists of coming to the aid of the civil power in the apparently never ending fight against subversives and terrorism . ” (‘1169….’ Comment – if Mr. Cooney was truly concerned about “subversives and terrorism” he would have noticed those evils being inflicted on us by Westminster and attempted to do something about that situation . Instead , he co-operated with the British to ensure that their occupation of part of this isle ran as smoothly as possible .)
Now , in the wake of Ballinamore , the State Army is to be given more powers and allowed more discretion in its back-up to the civil power .
The Defence portfolio used to be rated at the bottom of the State Cabinet barrel , but not any more : the very fact that the annual cost of maintaining the State Defence Forces is now over £220 million tells its own story , and with the increased importance of the State Army has come the higher ranking of the Defence job – Paddy Cooney is the most experienced State Minister to be put in charge of Defence since Oscar Traynor…….
The Catholic hierarchy made meaningless calls for public enquiries into the British shoot-to-kill policy , but the British-established ‘Northern Ireland Office’ – after treating those appeals with deserved contempt – refused to heed , instead instituting internal RUC enquiries to be carried out by those that British Direct-Ruler James Prior glibly referred to as “…independent people from the police force..” !
Those ‘enquiries’ , meaningless as they are , have yet apparently even to reach the six-county Director of Public Prosecutions , in strong contrast to the alacrity with which the DPP in England received the report into the Metropolitan Police shooting of Stephen Waldorf in London in January 1983 , which resulted in two British detectives being charged with murder .
Dr. Francis Brooks , the Catholic Bishop of Dromore , speaking at the Requiem Mass for Michael Tighe on November 27th 1982 , demonstrated to what extent the Catholic hierarchy has deliberately cut itself adrift from the sentiments and fears of the bulk of the nationalist population , and has rendered itself logically and morally incapable of unequivocally condemning the deliberate shoot-to-kill tactics employed by the RUC . Dr. Brooks stated –
” The police have a most difficult and dangerous responsibility placed on them , restoring law and order in the province . An impartial enquiry , irrespective of its findings , would strengthen the credibility of the police and foster confidence among all fair-minded people . ” (‘1169…’ Comment – as usual throughout our history , the Catholic hierarchy , ever-mindful of its ‘position’ within ‘society’ , will stoop to any level to preserve its links with those it perceives to be the ‘ruling class’ , regardless of the rights and wrongs of the issue at hand . They ‘turn the other cheek’ , providing said cheek belongs to someone else ).
It was in the ‘Feach’ team that Eoghan Harris had his first of several celebrated encounters with the equally egotistical Proinsias MacAonghusa – the ‘Feach’ presenter took umbrage at an unsigned article by Eoghan Harris in an unofficial producers’ bulletin which claimed that Proinsias MacAonghusa was angling for promotion to Head of Radio na Gaeltachta : at MacAonghusa’s insistence , Harris was removed from ‘Feach’ , fanning a feud that has continued ever since .
During the 1970’s , Eoghan Harris displayed a diabolical talent for embroiling himself in controversy within the Borgia-like court at RTE , Montrose , while managing to survive unscathed himself . During a stint with the ‘Seven Days’ programme Eoghan Harris came to the angry attention of Conor Cruise O’ Brien for his editing of a programme on Northern internees which had Cruise O’ Brien openly fulminating about ‘subversives in RTE’ at the 1974 Labour Party conference .
But the scripting of ‘The Greening of America’, an award-winning programme on U.S.-Irish immigrants , later marked the climax of Harris’s career as a TV producer . More and more he diverted his moody energies after that towards shaping the political direction of the Workers Party , or Official Sinn Fein as it was then known…….