protest most strongly against being compelled to attend
the period under the scrutiny of this inquiry i.e.
Bloody Sunday 1972 and because of the split in the
republican movement in 1970 I had become disillusioned
primarily because of the said split and the lack of
proper screening in the recruitment of volunteers.
For at the time because of events there was an influx
of volunteers into the IRA and contrary to regulation
procedure some new recruits found themselves in positions
of authority in next to no time. Being security minded
I was opposed to this development. It necessitated
however a period aside from a
more active involvement which implies that I was not
privy to what was going
on within the leadership of the Official IRA immediately
prior to or during the events of Bloody Sunday.
the day in question I was ill and resting in a flat
at the Rossville Flats complex. Due to the flat being
approximately 100 yards from the point of where the
speakers on that day would deliver I was in the position
of hearing the speeches. Unfortunately due to the
action of the British
Army no speeches would be heard and mayhem and murder
the main reason why I was compelled to attend this
inquiry was an alleged statement referring to the
Officials by myself in the biography of Martin McGuinness
by Liam Clarke and Kathy Johnston relating to the
events of that day. I claim authorship of the quotation
but it is not an expression of the truth re the Officials
at that time.
arose as a story which I gave in response to a question
presented by one of the authors.
was asked if I had any information about Martin McGuinness
on the day in question and I replied that according
to rumour prevalent at the time the latter person
was in the Brandywell area of the city when the shooting
was made to the Officials and I stated that I was
not involved with
them then and that I was on the fringes of the movement
so to speak. There then arose in the discussion reference
relating to a rumour prevalent at the time and allegedly
circulated by a provisional or one of their sympathizers
that the Officials had opened up on the British Army.
I responded by stating that I was aware of the rumour
and that I recalled an occasion when having a pint
with the late Michael
Montgomery, in the Derby Bar sometime after his release
from internment, when
Mickey was interested to know if the rumour was true.
It was then in a jocular manner I attempted to imitate
a fellow republican who is also dead but who had the
habit when having a few too many of trying to impress
others by claiming that a break away group of the
Officials had opened up on Bloody Sunday. There is
no substance to this belief and I believe that I made
this clear to the authors at the time and that I wanted
no reference to it in the proposed biography.
relation to the authors I must confess that after
I had met them I assumed very quickly that the purpose
of writing the book about Martin McGuinness was to
do a hatchet job on Irish Republicanism as a whole
via this one individual. This I would not tolerate
inspite of my belief that the Provisional leadership
are Lundies to the republican cause because of their
acceptance of and promotion of the partitionist Belfast
Agreement. So I decided there and then to feed them
a mixture of truth and lies - more lies than truth.
I was also assured that I would see any contributions
by myself in manuscript form prior to publication
but this was not adhered to by the authors.
for whether the Officials or the Provisionals shot
at the British Army first on the date in question
it would be contrary to guerrilla strategy for one
of the fundamental principles of the latter is that
nothing should be done to risk the lives or welfare
of civilians. Unfortunately mistakes can be made resulting
in tragedy but those responsible for the first shots
on the occasion under question rests with the invading
Army. For we must bear in mind that the thousands
protesting on that day were doing so against the special
power of political internment. Thus no republican
worth his or her salt would endanger the lives of
civilians opposing such a draconian power for they
in the main the victims of it."
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