<img src="THE SEEDS OF A POLICE STATE …….
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 .
In addition , Dr. Sean O Cleirigh stated that he had found , on his examination of Brian McNally , all movements of McNally’s neck , left wrist , and little fingers of the left hand were painful for him , and that there was a marked tenderness all over his body , especially at the lower ribs , and that the injuries were of a type consistent with the beatings that McNally had described to him .
Dr. Sean Magee , who also examined McNally , gave evidence at the trial , corroborating that already given by Dr. Sean O Cleirigh : thus in McNally’s case there was consistent medical evidence of the fact that he was suffering from injuries by the time he got to Mountjoy Prison on the evening of April 8th , 1976 . The Garda and the state’s response to this evidence was to suggest that McNally had been beaten up either by himself (!) or by a cell-mate in the Bridewell Garda Barracks on the night of April 7th , 1976 .
We will be examining over the following days the extraordinary circumstances whereby Brian McNally and the others came to be in Garda custody in the Bridewell that night – starting with the case of Nicky Kelly…….
The ‘ horrors of paramilitary violence’ cannot furnish a satisfactory justification for such derogations since it is primarily because rights such as these have not been upheld by the state in the past , and are not being fairly applied in the present , that the grievances which have sustained the conflict here originally arose and have persisted . (‘1169…’ Comment – ….and that is the difference between those seeking ‘increased civil rights’ from the British [SDLP , Provo SF , and Leinster House in general , amongst others] and Irish Republicans , who seek a British military and political withdrawal .)
Responding to violent unrest of this kind by adding to the sense of injustice which nourishes it can only postpone the establishment of peace and stability . (‘1169…’ Comment – “the sense of injustice which nourishes” political violence on this isle is the actual physical and jurisdictional British presence , not the [lack of] ‘civil rights’ which are ‘granted’ by those in command of the occupation.) Any regime which seeks such a ‘solution’ is seriously selling short on the fundamentals of democracy and deceiving the people it governs into believing that all will be well once the ‘men of violence’ are safely locked up !
In the context of the present debate a fair trial means primarily that strict rules of evidence and procedure , founded upon the principle that an accused person is innocent until proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt should be rigidly adhered to . Doubt must remain about the guilt of defendants convicted , as many of the supergrass cases have been , upon the uncorroborated evidence of accomplices whose account of the facts cannot be considered to be in any sense objective……. (‘1169…’ Comment – “uncorroborated” and/or “objective” or not , if the ‘evidence’ assisted Westminster in removing from the scene those who offered resistance then it was acceptable.)
Ask somebody in the street in the Bogside area of Derry for directions to Cable Street and the chances are they’ll ask if it’s the Sinn Fein Offices you’re looking for . They are that well-known and they’re in the heart of the depressed Bogside area . (‘1169…’ Comment – too ‘depressed’ for the now ‘re-dressed’ Provos : see ‘Sinn Fein move out of Bogside – prominent republican speaks out’ , here.) There are others in the sprawling working-class areas of Creggan and Shantallow and in the Waterside .
The SDLP Office is in an empty shop in Clarendon Street in Derry’s city centre and has only been open for a couple of weeks – there was no sign outside the place last week to indicate what it was and one irate supporter came in complaining that he had had difficulty in finding it !
At the Sinn Fein Office a woman came in to say that Peggy O’ Hara , the mother of Patsy O’ Hara , one of the 1981 hunger-strikers , had had her house raided again that morning by the British forces , just a few days before her son’s anniversary . Local people came in complaining about housing problems , young men and women in denims , the working-class youth of the area , rushed in and out with posters and election registers .
The SDLP Office was busy enough too but the workers were middle-aged and mainly middle-class : they were mostly addressing envelopes – they would have young people too , they said , when they’d finished school , but they didn’t have the working-class or those out of work , who make up the bulk of Derry’s youth . Those Offices illustrate the contrast between Sinn Fein and the SDLP…….