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Daily Ireland, 'Letters To The Editor', 3 April 2006:
RUC/Garda co-operation ensured partition
Your recent front page article dealing with a possible policy of cooperation between An Garda Siochana and the RUC was an important contribution to the debate about cross-border security during the so called Troubles.
My view, however, is that the article did not go to the very heart of the issue.
Officially, police forces which regard themselves as being in two different jurisdictions have every right to co-operate on issues of mutual concern.
No, the core issue is whether the Irish government, at cabinet level, knowingly sanctioned a form of background support for a British intelligence/RUC campaign of covert harassment and targeting for murder of republican activists.
In this scenario, RUC Special Branch and/or the British army would be tacitly allowed to carry out "interventions", which included the arrest and intimidation of Irish citizens they believed to be "subversive".
Of course, once this policy was enacted there would be no control over how the RUC, and the British intelligence services would exploit this cowardly political largesse and what actually began to happen was that they and their surrogate death squads within the UDA/UVF and UDR began a campaign of bombing and murder of irish citizens very often regardless of the politics professed by those citizens. It is my belief that such a murderous policy existed and that the evidence available from frequent cross-border attacks, and the murders of Seamus Ludlow and John Francis Green in particular, point very strongly in this direction.
Any journalist who has talked to senior members of the Garda Siochana who served at that time will tell you that the IRA and its support base was regarded as the sole enemy and that the security culture was to assist the RUC to get on with doing its job of defeating irredentist republicanism
In my book, A Very British Jihad, I point out that two of the most senior RUC officers involved in liaison with the Garda were also involved in manipulating the activities of loyalist death squads for their own purposes.
It beggars belief to suggest that the security authorities in Dublin were not aware of this. Indeed, the most serious charge against the Irish government at that time is that it knew about RUC torture of suspects, collusion with loyalists and joint RUC loyalist cross-border raids and yet continued with their "Get the IRA" policy.
In the cold light of the post GFA dawn, we can see this disastrous security policy for what it was. In essence, the facilitating of a British intelligence inspired Trojan horse into the very heart of Irish society and culture.
A policy which ensured a partitionist security agenda whose prime aim, in my view, was to cast doubt and suspicion on any Irish person prepared to offer support to beleagured Catholics and Nationalists in the North. The legacy of this partitionist culture will be apparent in this country for many years to come and perhaps that was the long-term intention.
Baile Atha Cliath
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