Tag Archives: IRA


Shane Paul O’Doherty, aged 18, on the run in London, 1972

Repentant IRA bomber Shane Paul O’Doherty went on the Ray D’arcy Show on RTÈ Radio 1 yesterday to discuss his life growing up on the ‘wrong side of the border’and why he turned to violence.

In a lengthy, compelling interview Mr O’Doherty, who took to religion in Long Kesh, addresses ‘misconceptions’ about when the Troubles began, questions the role – if any –  of the 1966 Easter Rising commemorations in luring young men to the IRA and speculates on the organisation’s most famous ‘non-member.

Grab a tay.

Ray D’Arcy: “My next guest, Shane Paul O’Doherty received 30 life sentences for his bombing campaigns with the IRA in 1975. Seeing his victims in court sent him on a journey of discovery through years of studying the Bible and corresponding with his Bishop, he found the truth he’d been looking for in the isolation of his solitary cell. Today, he’s still atoning for his actions. How’re you doing Shane?”

Shane Paul O’Doherty: “Who wrote that Ray?”

D’Arcy: “Will wrote it. You were the subject would you believe of a documentary on Sunday night?”

O’Doherty: “I accidentally emailed Roger Childs – “

D’Arcy: “…Who is the Head of Religious Programmes at RTÉ”

O’Doherty: “ – about six months ago, I said Roger, ‘Can you think outside the box, can you make a sexy, different play about Kevin Barry about his last few weeks?’ So, it worked out that we got a documentary about me writing a play about Kevin Barry and more, and more of my story than I really wished – because, I mean I’ve had this book out about donkeys years – that I’ve brought you a copy of and one for Will, there isn’t a copy for everyone in the audience.”

D’Arcy: “Thanks Shane. Well, I watched that and I watched Peter Taylor’s documentary, which was made in 1989, in which he spoke to your four brothers and your ma – it’s very fascinating and the interesting thing was that you wrote a letter when you were nine, which said, ‘When I grow up I want to fight and if necessary die for Ireland’s Freedom’. Signed Shane Paul. Well, you were nine – in 1965.”

O’Doherty: “Yeah, well I was 10. I had been reading books about Irish history for years, there was a real library at home and I somehow got stuck into books on Irish history, with you know the terrible sorrows of Irish history, and you know there was one book there – ‘Speeches from the Dock’ – an old book, I’ve still got copies of it yet. and I was fired up as a kid, you know, as someone who was reading from a very young age, my Da was a teacher in the Christian Brothers, he was a great man for reading and I had read so much about Irish history that i was overwhelmed by its tragedies and I had a notion, you know that I wanted to grow up and fight for Ireland – to die for Ireland. But the interesting thing was when I was being interrogated by the RUC much later, having been arrested during the cease-fire in ’75 – they raced in with great glee at one point in the interrogation and showed me this – and I was more embarrassed by that note…”

D’Arcy: “…that you’d written as a nine year-old.”

O’Doherty: “…than I was being embarrassed about being captured. So embarrassed by it.”

D’Arcy: “So they were using that as evidence against you?”

O’Doherty: “Ah well, I’d say it was intended to cause me embarrassment. You know, what a D Head you are – we’ve captured you, you know?” Continue reading


Thomas Slab Murphy arriving at the Special Criminal Court this morning (top) and leaving this evening (above) for an unspecified prison.

Alleged former IRA “chief of staff”, Thomas ‘Slab’ Murphy, has been sentenced to 18 months in jail for tax evasion.

He was convicted of nine charges at the Republic of Ireland’s non-jury Special Criminal Court in December….

….Speaking to journalists before the hearing started, he was asked if he would go onto the republican wing if he was sent to prison.

Murphy replied: “I’ve no idea, I’ve never been in jail before.”

When asked if he might now write a book on his experiences, he said: “Ah, ye (you) have all written it already.”

‘Slab’ Murphy: Tax evasion jail term for alleged ex-IRA chief (BBC)

NUJ seeks garda probe into intimidation of journalists by associates of ‘Slab’ Murphy (Independent.ie)



British Secretary of State for Northern ireland Therese Villiers in the House of Commons this afternoon.

A Government-ordered review has found that all the main republican and loyalist terror groups in Northern Ireland remain in existence, but are now committed to peace.
The independent review, called by Theresa Villiers, also found that all the main groups had committed murders since the 1998 Good Friday Agreement but their leaders were now committed to peaceful means, she told parliament.
It also found that the structures of the Provisional IRA remain, including an Army council, but in a “much reduced form”, Ms Villiers said.
She said the report found that “individual members of paramilitary groups with a legacy of violent activity still represent a threat to national security”.


Nothing gets past them.

IRA still exists but in ‘much reduced form’, says official report (Guardian)

IRA ruling body still exists, Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers tells MPs (Telegraph)





A social media profile [on Myspace (!)] of the alleged shooter (top centre) [named as Chris Madeupname Harper Mercer, top centre], contains a video featuring archive footage of the IRA, a number of images of IRA members in military uniform and a reference to an edition of An Phoblacht magazine.

Seems legit and entirely credible and not fake at all.


Oregon gunman identified by US media (RTÉ)

Oregon Gunman Was IRA Supporter (Sunday World)


From top: Noirin O’Sullivan, Enda Kenny and Joan Burton

This morning.

Government buildings, Merrion Street,. Dublin

The Garda Commissioner, Tanaiste and Taoiseach leave a meeting held to discuss the existence of the IRA  and in particular Noirin O’Sullivan’s ‘letter of comfort‘ regarding the organisation’s status.

Seemed to go well.

(Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie)


Sinn Féin Finance Spokesman Pearse Doherty promoting Saturday’s Right 2 Water demonstration yesterday

Further to controversy regarding the IRA’s alleged involvement in the killing of Kevin McGuigan

“Micheál Martin was minister for foreign affairs at a time when we were negotiating the policing and justice powers; none of these issues were raised by him. Yet he goes on to make outlandish claims that the IRA . . . not only does their structure still exist, but that they are involved in racketeering, criminality; which the PSNI say themselves is simply untrue.

“Former volunteers still exist, they didn’t all pass away, they didn’t all leave the island, they are still there involved in Sinn Féin, some of them are involved in the GAA, some of them are involved in community groups, some are getting on with their lives.

I am sure on occasion they sit down and have a drink or meet at an event but is that a meeting of the IRA? No it is not. The IRA have gone, they have left the stage, they have disbanded, they have put the weapons out of use and that happened 10 years ago.”

Pearse Doherty TD

McGuigan crisis is ‘fake’, says Pearse Doherty (Sarah Bardon, Irish Times)

(Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie)


London-based The Irish World, on sale tomorrow


Of their cover story, Irish World editor Bernard Purcell writes:

We know how necessary creative ambivalence and polite fictions have been to the peace process/political process and it is clear that a great many people – if by no means all – have made their accommodation, or peace, with that.

But when we tried to get a straightforward answer – yes or no, or yes and no – to two simple questions posed by email and by telephone to their respective press departments: Is the IRA intact and still active? Does it pose a threat to people in the UK and Ireland? we found that not one single agency or participant in the process – of the handful who did reply – could give us an answer.

We asked Downing Street, the Home Office, MI5, the Northern Ireland Office, the Department of Foreign Affairs, the Metropolitan Police, the US Embassy, an Garda Siochana, the Police Service of Northern Ireland, the All–Party Parliamentary Group on Irish in Britain and…Sinn Féin.

Those who did reply were Foreign Affairs, PSNI, US Consulate General in Belfast and the Gardai. The Gardai and the US Consulate told us it was a matter for the local police, the PSNI.

Foreign Affairs gave, understandably and predictably, a lengthy nuanced reply which did not actually answer the question with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’.

That evening, after a day of trying to get a response from the NIO, North Secretary Theresa Villiers, backing her PSNI Chief Constable’s nuanced, balanced take on recent events affected to be not at all surprised the IRA still exists and is active – albeit in a non-terrorist capacity.

Still haven’t head from Sinn Féin…or the MPs whose all-party committee purports to represent Irish people in Britain….

The Irish World