Tomás Ó Flatharta

Looking at Things from the Left

Archive for the ‘Justice’ Category

Pat Finucane – A De Silva British State Whitewash?

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Read this – and see that the British State is very unlikely to hold a Public Inquiry into the killing of Pat Finucane

The Broken Elbow

Corrected 14.40 EST

Correction – December 27th 2012 – The Force Research Unit member we identified as Peter Charles Jones from the two photos taken of the unit was in fact a soldier called Kevin Dodds. He was/is a friend of another well known special forces soldier, Charles Pettifer, a former member of the SAS who married Tiggy Legge Bourke, friend of the late Lady Diana Spencer and nanny to her two sons. Dodds and Pettifer, according to our sources, went into business together after military service and set up a risk assessment company (business-speak for private detectives). However as you can see here, Pettifer has since moved up in the world, literally.

Meanwhile the former SAS soldier turned thriller writer known as Andy McNab was obviously indulging in some sly humour at the expense of the former FRU member when he wrote the novel described below (cue tipsy laughter…

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Baseline Benefits are under attack: ULA statement | United Left Alliance

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Bernadette McAliskey Interview – Not Much Has Changed in Northern Ireland

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Written by tomasoflatharta

Aug 28, 2012 at 7:46 am

Violent Legacy of Irish Troubles, British Double-Standards – Boston College Row Revisited

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Ed Moloney’s Irish Echo Editorial (an Irish-American Newspaper) on the Boston tapes controversy is required reading for all people genuinely interested in dealing with the violent legacy of the Northern Ireland Troubles (1969-1998, signing of the Good Friday Agreement).

Two key quotes :
Number 1 :

But the war has now ended, peace reigns and there is a desperate need for dealing with the past in a way that solidifies that peace and ensures an untroubled future.

The British have chosen a way that does the opposite. The Boston College subpoenas symbolize an approach to this issue based on revenge and the view that alleged combatants in that war should be dragged before the courts, convicted and jailed.

Number 2 :

There will be those, of course, who will say that if Gerry Adams did order Jean McConville’s “disappearance” then he deserves to be prosecuted. In a normal society, one ruled by a normal government, that would be a difficult argument to answer. But Northern Ireland is not, even with the peace process, a normal society and nowhere is this more evident than in the administration of justice.

The plain, undeniable fact is that there are double standards in the way justice is doled out in Northern Ireland.

Read, Circulate, and Act.

The Broken Elbow

Irish Echo
Editorial | By Ed Moloney | March 14th, 2012

Slowly, but inexorably, the penny is dropping, both here in the United States as well as back in Ireland.

The Boston College subpoenas seeking access to oral history interviews with former IRA activists on behalf of the police in Northern Ireland are about the dumbest things that have ever happened in the long relationship between the United States, Britain and Ireland.

The difficulty is not how to describe why they are so dumb, but in counting the ways in which they are so dumb.

First of all, this is not the way in which to heal a conflict like that in the North of Ireland.

Over 3,000 people died and tens of thousands were scarred, physically and mentally, by a war that was undoubtedly one of the longest and most violent, if not the most violent in Irish history.

But the…

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Northern Ireland News – Be Shocked, But Not Surprised – Prisoners Abused By the State

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Two quotes sum up stories which should shock :

Over the last year, political prisoners in Maghaberry have faced a range of abuses of their human rights. More recently, Marian Price has been effectively interned, her licence revoked after 30 years of freedom. Worse, she is the only woman prisoner in Maghaberry, which means she is very isolated.

This public meeting has been organised by a broad-based group of women, many of whom do not agree with the political views of the prisoners whose rights they want to defend. But it is the case all over the world that, if we don’t stand up for the rights of all, whatever their political views, all of us will suffer in the end. Speakers at the meeting are families of the prisoners, including Marian Price’s sister. The meeting will be chaired by Bernadette McAliskey.

More Details Here :

Here is Quote Number 2 :

A report which could end the protest by republican prisoners at Maghaberry jail has gathered dust on the desk of Justice Minister, David Ford, for eight months.

The secret document – drawn up by respected individuals hand-picked by Mr Ford – lays out a clear way of ending the bitter confrontation between dissident inmates and the prison authorities.


the main recommendation of the report – given to Mr Ford last October – indicates the confrontation could be swiftly resolved. New technology – whereby prisoners are searched with scanners and then sit in an x-ray-type machine called a BOSS chair – could bring peace to the jail, the authors suggest.


The report was compiled by former NIO political director, Chris McCabe; Peter Bunting, assistant general secretary of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions; and two experienced conflict resolution negotiators – Dutch woman Fleur Ravensbergen and Conal McFeely from Derry.

Full Report here :

Congratulations to Goretti Horgan and Bernadette McAliskey – Their example should be followed.

Written by tomasoflatharta

Jul 13, 2011 at 12:02 am

“Dispatches from the Dark Side – On Torture and the Death of Justice” – Gareth Peirce Talk at the Law Society of Ireland

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Gareth Peirce is a dedicated lawyer who, for the last 30 years, has defended “suspect communities” against state attacks.  In the 1970’s successive British governments targeted Irish people living in Britain and many individuals were framed, tortured, and forced to spend several years in jail for IRA bombings they did not commit.

Peirce came to public attention for tirelessly defending individuals in cases such as the Birmingham Six, the Guildford Four, Judith Ward and Danny McNamee.  She delivered the Law Society of Ireland 2011 Human Rights Lecture on May 10 in Dublin.

John Meehan reports.

On March 14 1991 the free man Paddy Hill grabbed a microphone outside the London Old Bailey Court where the Birmingham Six were finally released, and told the world that the Judges inside the building behind him “did not even understand” the word Justice.

Gareth Pierce marked the 20th anniversary of the release with a Guardian article pointing out lessons from that era had been ignored, and today the British state is trying to create another “suspect community” : Muslims.

The Law Society Meeting Room was packed – Scattered among the large crowd were many activists from the Miscarriage of Justice Campaign  in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s. One was Michael Farrell, who texted me and many other people about the meeting.

Some are no longer with us – notably Thom McGinty (the Diceman) who starred as “British Justice” in a huge Dublin “Parade of Innocence” protest march against the Birmingham Six frame-up in 1989 : Read the rest of this entry »

Written by tomasoflatharta

May 17, 2011 at 12:31 am