The Blanket

The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent
A Fair Trial

Bernadette McKevitt • May 23, 2003

The recent media frenzy in relation to "Stakeknife" is very reminiscent of what happen to our family in 1998.

The underlying current that runs through the many controversial and tragic events of the past 30 years - Bloody Sunday, Dublin/Monaghan bombing, Pat Finnuacane/Rosemary Nelson murders, Omagh bomb, the stitch-up of Michael McKevitt and the latest Stakeknife episode, which includes the Notarantonio murder and many more - is MI5.

In Michael's case, MI5 directed and manipulated the activities of David Rupert whilst in Ireland, paying him bonuses to encourage him to invent stories. The FBI merely sat on the sideline. It was MI5 who decided when Michael was to be arrested and what his charges were to be. Rupert in response to their request to testify described himself as a mercenary and replied "tell me what to do, make it worth my while and as long as the benefit overrides risk in my view it will be done to the best of my ability." With that in mind they set about compiling evidence to sustain these charges and eliminating anything that would undermine the credibility of their star witness Mr. Rupert. This is not unique to Michael's case. Eamon McCann writing in last week's Sunday Tribune (May 11) described how MI5 had constructed statements for the witnesses appearing before the Saville inquiry.

Irish Prime Bertie Ahern has expressed his concern in relation to the "Stakeknife" reports, however once again he demonstrated how he was willing to let the media colour his judgement. One would have thought first and foremost his concern would have been to uphold a citizen's right to be presumed innocent until found guilty by a court of law and to have criticised the trial by media that took place over the last number of days. It seems ironic that he was alarmed by the reports of MI5 operating agents in the "Republic" when one of those same agents will appear before the Special Criminal court Dublin in four weeks time to frame an Irish citizen. When approached by me in Portlaoise town during his election campaign last year, Mr Ahern emphatically denied any knowledge of MI5 agents operating in the 26 counties, he advised me to go to the Gardai if I had any information concerning this issue! How then does he explain Garda Assistant Commissioner, Dermot Jenning's liaisons with MI5, where according to MI5 documents (an extract of which was read at a recent court hearing) Jennings had urged MI5 officers to "remove" certain reports that would have made David Rupert "an untrustworthy source".

The combination of MI5 operating illegally and without accountability in Ireland, the unscrupulous elements within the media and the cowardly inaction of Irish political leaders in upholding the human rights of Irish citizens, inevitably perpetuate the cycle of human rights abuses.

Michael asks for no more than that awarded to any other Irish citizen - the right to a fair trial and presumption of innocence.Your support in ensuring Michael's right to justice and a fair trial would be greatly valued.

In order to make sure that the trial is fair, the presence of Observers from Ireland and from countries abroad would be very helpful and deeply appreciated. It would also be helpful in this serious matter involving the integrity of the courts and justice system if written expressions of concern were sent to the Minister for Justice, Michael McDowell, Leinster House, Kildare street, Dublin 2.




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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent



I have spent
many years of my life
in opposition, and
I rather like the role.
- Eleanor Roosevelt

Index: Current Articles

23 May 2003


Other Articles From This Issue:


A Fair Trial
Bernadette McKevitt


Anthony McIntyre


Connolly on Religion, Women and Sex

Liam O Ruairc


Gareth O Connor
Joe Dillon


To the Citizens of Europe
Davy Carlin


A New Morning
Annie Higgins


19 May 2003


Disappearing the Truth
Anthony McIntyre


The Undesirables
Pedram Moallemian


Shadowy Forces

Eamonn McCann


The Adventures of
Steak Knife
Brian Mór


The Death of Cu Chulainn
Brian Mór


Henri Lefebvre - French Marxist Humanist
Liam O Ruairc


What They Say
Annie Higgins




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Book Reviews
The Blanket Magazine Winter 2002
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