Swords To Plowshares


NO REPRO FEE President of Sinn Féin Gerry Adams appears on the News at One (with Aine Lawlor) on the RTÉ set at the National Ploughing Championships 2016 in Tullamore. Picture: Kinlan Photography

NO REPRO FEE President of Sinn Féin Gerry Adams appears on the News at One (with Aine Lawlor) on the RTÉ set at the National Ploughing Championships 2016 in Tullamore. Picture: Kinlan Photography

This lunchtime.

Tullamore, Co Offally

President of Sinn Féin Gerry Adams appears on the News at One (with Aine Lawlor) on the RTÉ set at the National Ploughing Championships 2016 to address allegations made on BBC NI’s Spotlight last night that he directly ordered the murder of party official and British agent Denis Donaldson.

Transcript to follow.

Update: Ta da!

Áine Lawlor: “Gerry Adams is with me at the RTÉ Ploughing Studio, and Gerry Adams, thank you for joining us. You’re saying you specifically and definitely refute these allegations. Did you see the Spotlight programme?”

Gerry Adams: “No, I didn’t see the programme, but I got a readout of it this morning, and I read the press coverage of it, and I very specifically and categorically and in an unqualified way deny these allegations,
Let’s go back (inaudible) just for a moment, these allegations, and Denis Donaldson’s claims that he was an agent came after what was called Stormontgate, where there was an allegation, totally wrong, that there was a Sinn Féin spy ring at Stormont.
And that was engineered by the same people who, in my opinion, engineered Denis Donaldson’s death, but who at that time brought down the Stormont Assembly. The political process collapsed as you may recall. Now, that the BBC would broadcast unsubstantiated allegations from an anonymous person, self-confessed agent, about me, is low journalism indeed.”

Lawlor: “The unidentified figure in the Spotlight programme, you couldn’t see him, he was filmed in silhouette, he was given the name Martin. He claimed even though you had stepped down from the Army Council in 2006, you were consulted on all matters.”

Adams: “Well, I’ve denied all of that, y’know, and reading the newspapers this morning, he provides no evidence to this, he said I would have been consulted, or words to that effect but look…”

Lawlor: “The exact quote was “I know from my experience in the IRA, that murders have to be approved by the leadership.” “Who ordered the killing?” he’s asked. “Gerry Adams”, he says, “he gives the final say”. He says South Armagh demanded action from the Army Council, and you had to agree.”

Adams: “Well, I’ve already denied that, and I was shocked and surprised when I heard about his murder. The Garda investigation is ongoing. They clearly are forming (inaudible) that it was dissident Republicans.”

Lawlor: “It was claimed by the Real IRA three years ago…”

Adams: “…and the IRA was in ceasefire at that time. I think the ceasefire was around 2004, around that time, I’d actually left the field entirely around that time. There’s also an ongoing demand from Denis Donaldson’s family for an inquest which they have been denied ten years later. One of the RUC’s Special Branch operators said they will not co-operate with some of these investigations.
Now, Áine, we have to ask, where do all these spies and informers and agents come from? It comes from the fact that the British, during the war, used all of these counter-insurgency devices and many, many more, to try and intimidate people in the North…”

Lawlor: “There were lots of actions taken by lots of sides…”

Adams: “…you’ll have to let me finish…”

Lawlor “…make it as briefly… I don’t want a history lesson.”

Adams: “Well, it is history, and we have succeeded in coming out of that history, but some of us unfortunately, don’t like the outcome of that history, they don’t like the fact that Martin McGuinness and my Sinn Féin ministers are in the Executive in the North, Sinn Féin is growing in the South, which wasn’t the outcome they were working towards, and that’s where all of this comes from.”

Lawlor: “Which also brings us to the unresolved part of the Peace Process, the part that could be in fact the hardest part, of the many difficult bits, that is what are called legacy issues, there’s a new initiative coming up on that later in the Autumn. Denis Bradley said last night on the programme, he’s seen secret records that state that at any one time, the security forces were running about eight hundred informers, throughout the Troubles. That’s a lot of people for a small community, and a lot of the most controversial deaths were the deaths of informers. Are we ever going to know the truth, unless the IRA tells us its side of the story?”

Adams: “Well, I signed a deal, and Martin McGuinness signed a new deal to deal with legacy issues during the last number of rounds of talks. But let me remind you, (inaudible), and remind you we were told all those that were killed at the time were all gunmen and women, they weren’t.

They walked out of a meeting with British secretary of state, they are refusing to fund and provide issues for these legacy issues. All the legacy issues left outstanding can be resolved but the British government are actively involved in covering it up. We’ll come back to this issue and I’ve raised Denis Donaldson’s death and the circumstances of his killing, on more than one occasion, and the Irish government has a real responsibility to get the British government to face up to its obligations under successive agreements, and the Republicans will not be found wanting in dealing with these issues.

I will not be found wanting, I don’t believe Martin McGuinness has been found wanting, in dealing with these issues.”

Lawlor: “And there’s also issues of course in Loyalist representation, in many legacy talks, why would British intelligence be moving against you at this stage, one of the key architects of the peace process, when you’re in the twilight of your political career?”

Adams: “They’ve never stopped moving against me, you (inaudible) in the last 10-15 years, and these allegations are usually aped and repeated by a compliant media…”

Lawlor: But the war is over, surely, Gerry, why would they be going after you?

Adams: “Not for them, I’ve already said to ya, not for them! This is about stopping the onward development of Sinn Féin, the uncertainty, when we want to tackle sectarianism and we want to tackle division, they don’t. Now, may I remind you, Áine, and these are very important issues we’ve just discussed. We are at the Ploughing Championship. I’m here, Sinn Féin has a very large presence here, we’re organised across this island, we believe Rural Ireland has been let down by successive governments…”


Lawlor: “One final question on Spotlight: will you sue them? They accuse you of ordering a murder that you absolutely and specifically repute, you’re clearly angry about it: why don’t you sue them?”

Adams: “My legal advisors give me the kind of guidance that I require, I will sue them. I’ve taken various cases against a number of articles, corrections and apologies from a number of media outlets…”

Lawlor: “Because earlier you seemed to be saying because they carried a denial it wouldn’t… would you?”

Adams: “I don’t have big pockets like RTÉ or the BBC, if my legal advisors tell me to take a case, I will take a case. I have a case pending against other media outlets at this time.”

Gerry Adams denies sanctioning murder of British spy Denis Donaldson (The Guardian)

Pics: Tony Kinlan

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44 thoughts on “Swords To Plowshares

  1. Sheik Yahbouti

    I know I risk a bashing for saying it – but at this remove in time I don’t care who is right or wrong. What I want to see is the destruction of the current political set up in this country, and some real progress towards an Ireland fit to live in. Can SF be part of this new Ireland? I don’t know, but I’m willing to give them a chance.

    1. Harry Molloy

      You’d happily throw away the key for people who are incompetent but you would shrug your shoulders at a mass murderer.

      Says a lot.

      1. Sheik Yahbouti

        Harry, time to get over yourself, seriously. That attitude roots us in the past and renders progress impossible.

          1. Anomanomanom

            Seanie fitz was morally wrong, but to try do him as the big bad bringer of recession is ridiculous. Its NOT a national crime to bankrupt a non government company. Its a fupping crime to bail it out, but what can you do.

          2. Sheik Yahbouti

            No I would expect him to be tried the same as any other criminal. I would also expect him to cut a deal, in return for throwing the REAL movers and shakers under the bus. That would please me.

      2. Mr M

        I also think they deserve a chance. There seems to be nothing but corruption with th regular lot we have in Leinster House.
        It makes me sick to constantly hear the Adams, McGuinness and Sinn Fein bashing.

        People seem to forget that the terrorists who got the most amount of consecutive sentances in the troubles (mass murders your quote) was the Shankhill Butchers. At least Sinn Fein got into power in Stormont. The only power Michael Stone tried to get in there was fire power. See where that got him!
        The I.R.A have their ceasefire. It’s time to move on. The situation in Northern Ireland has never been as peaceful.

      1. Sheik Yahbouti

        mamma, I fear you are correct – but where does that leave those of us who desire to move forward into a fairer Society?

      1. Kieran NYC

        It could have happened last week and some people would excuse it as being “in the past, time to move on, stop endangering the peach process”.

      2. Sheik Yahbouti

        And I was assassinated in 1906. Does that move us forward? What we need to move towards is a fairer society – one in which petty thugs, extortioners and criminals can no longer hide behind a “political” label. Do you really have a problem with that?

        1. Kieran NYC

          “one in which petty thugs, extortioners and criminals can no longer hide behind a “political” label”

          Then why are thugs, extortioners and criminals allowed hide behind the Sinn Fein label?They somehow get an exemption?

    2. DubLoony

      I’m glad that they decided to stop killing people and that they talk now instead of kneecapping, but I’ll be dammed if I want them in charge of the whole country.

  2. Mark Malone

    Its hilarious that RTE and the Irish Times are running headlines about Gerry Adams based upon something told to a journalist by a source who was a *British agent* of 8 odd years.

    A British AGENT!!! Like a spy, an informer, someone who spent years getting paid to tell lies.

    But yeah its suddenly front page news


    1. Sheik Yahbouti

      I hear you Mark. Loadabollix, but we must maintain the presence – otherwise people might get down to REAL business – we can’t have that.

      1. Sheik Yahbouti

        Not presence, pretence, of course. I sometimes find it extra funny when I’m accused of airy fairyness, the number of people who are averse to facing reality – and dealing with it.

  3. realPolithicks

    If Sinn Fein really wants to make progress on the political front in Ireland then they need to get rid of Gerry Adams as leader. It’s time to bring along the younger generation, someone like Mary Lou McDonald or Pearse Doherty would do a fine job.

  4. Truth in the News

    You’d wonder was Jerry Adams around the Vatican around Sept 1978 so we could pin the demise
    of Pope John Paul 1 on him, since everything else has been tried to no avail, of course we should
    also believe….Duirt bean liom go nduirt bean lei…….may RTE should endorse it as their motto.

  5. RuilleBuille

    Donaldson was killed by the Real IRA who hate Adams. This has all the hall marks of some dissident smearing Adams.

    Shame on Spotlight for falling for this nonsense and not checking out some basic facts first.

    1. stev

      Or, convenient time to surface the story as a big old NAMA issue keeps bubbling away. “Hey folks, look over there at the bad man. Don’t look over where we’re getting away with all sorts. Keep looking over there.”

      1. Kieran NYC

        Yep. The same BBC that did a huge NAMA story up North a few weeks ago are now making programs to distract from NAMA.

        Seems plausible.

    2. Kolmo

      Sean O’Rourke’s slightly odd interview last week, The Last Word on Monday with some ‘Irishman in the British Spooks’ guff, Spotlight last night and the Indo ‘news’ group on an unending daily basis, even BS with the Green Party contributor – whatever one’s opinion on Adams they have all have upped the normal levels of attack in the past 7 days – they want him gone, out of the picture – is it because he has a popular following (despite the constant contrary media drone) among voters those in the FG, FF and Labour can only be envious of, is he being set-up? – as a keen observer of the North of many years – one can safely assume that he is.
      And aul Seany Fitz is up the steps today….probably no connection..

  6. Junkface

    Gerry Adams should retire and get out of politics if he wants Sinn Fein to improve. He’s tainted, and allegations keep coming back at him over time. These accusations seem very light on evidence, so its hearsay really.

    1. DubLoony

      He’s never going to get beyond a certain level with him & the old guard there.
      No matter the spin, they didn’t have the big breakthrough election they thought they were going to have in 2016, only 14% of the vote.

  7. Jake38

    Drone, drone, people of Nrn Irn, drone, (inaudible), notify the PSNI, drone, peace process, drone….zzz….sitcheyashun, ot tha minutt, drone….zzzzz….

    Work’s a treat.
    Every time.

  8. 15 cent

    “…make it as briefly… I don’t want a history lesson.”
    such a stupid line. she’s bringing up history, then when he explains, she’s pretty much goin “ah shuddup im just here to make people think you’re a killer”

  9. some old queen

    One of two things are happening here.

    Certain quarters demand Adams resigns in some sort of disgrace


    There is some sort reverse psychology game at play because everyone knows he is already an electoral liability.

    Either way, I am pretty certain that those behind this timing are not spring chickens themselves.

Comments are closed.

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