Current Affairs

Boston Tapes Exclusive! Content Of Interviews Sought By PSNI Revealed!

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The Broken Elbow

The days since the arrest of Gerry Adams for questioning about his alleged role in the abduction, death and disappearance of Jean McConville have been distinguished by some of the laziest and sloppiest journalism I have ever experienced.

Unchecked allegations nestle comfortably beside outright lies as one journalist after another has speculated in particular about the contents of the interviews that were unfortunately and unnecessarily handed over to the DoJ/PSNI by Boston College.

Many journalists have gone to print without even a phone call to myself to check facts or allegations. Nor have they bothered to avail themselves of the mountain of information and original documents stored on the website created and studiously tended by Carrie McIntyre, partner of Anthony McIntyre.

Had they bothered to give the computer keyboard a couple of clicks they would have been able to access the most accurate and complete description of the content of…

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15 comments on “Boston Tapes Exclusive! Content Of Interviews Sought By PSNI Revealed!

  1. re. “contents of the interviews that were unfortunately and unnecessarily handed over to the DoJ/PSNI by Boston College.”

    Ed and those involved in the ‘project’ have ‘unfortunately and unnecessarily’ facilitated the collection of material which was not been used for the intended purposes – what we need to hear from Eddie and Anthony et al is that they have realise they have made a most terrible miscalculation.

    • A miscalculation, yes, but one based on a false set of beliefs and assurances from Boston College. It is not Moloney or McIntyre who should be taken to task. They were engaged in a perfectly legitimate academic endeavour (and a worthy one, if one thinks of our own Bureau of Military History). The fault and blame lies with Boston College who have behaved as absolute cowards. Worse than that they have lied their way through this whole disaster.

      • re.”The fault and blame lies with Boston College who have behaved as absolute cowards. Worse than that they have lied their way through this whole disaster.”

        Clearly they should not have proceeded with the project until they had rock solid legal advise that the material they were collecting could not be used against other republicans. As soon as legal proceedings started the college would be inclined to wobble – they are an educational establishment who have responsibilities wider than the fate of those referred to on the tapes.

        This was a risk – clearly that was obvious to all who read about it – it has backfired and Ed and Anthony have to accept that – lashing out at the college and those who point to their mistake (even when it is unfairly exaggerated) will not deflect from that. For someone like Anthony who has questioned the republican credentials of the SF leadership as republicans and to see Gerry arrested – partially on evidence from a project he was involved with – will and should be extremely uncomfortable for him.

        • I agree in the main. There is plenty of blame to go around. That said accusations of “Anthony McIntout” etc. are ridiculous and shows the real lack of thinking in some (Provisional) Republican circles. As I said elsewhere Sinn Féin needs to shoulder some of the blame for the ongoing debacle. Playing the victim card when they were one of the architects of the Peace Process, not to mention forming one wing of the regional administration at Stormont, is a bit much to take.

          • Obviously SF are going to seize on Anthony’s difficulties and going to milk the situation for all its worth. Gerry was given a fantastic opportunity to play the (victimised) ‘statesman’ ( BBC word) and Gerry did that brilliantly – if SF had paid for advertising space on the BBC they could not have better publicity. His release marked by loyalists-protests followed by a live press conference on BBC and SKY and the opportunity to electioneer and criticise Ed and Anthony.

            As mentioned elsewhere – it did indeed look like a PSNI conspircacy – but one which was initiated by Gerry – which is what the Dublin taxi driver told me he believed was going on – on my recent visit to Baile Ath Cliath.

            In the world of politics obviously Gerry was going to diss the Boston Project – as the potential biggest loser from its conclusions – irrespective of the intention or merit of the Project itself.

            SF will probably be secretly delighted with the Boston Project if it leads to better-than-would-have-been-results. Anthony and Ed are may turn out be victims of the law of unintended consequences (luc) and arguably guilty of the serious (in political/journalistic credibility terms) crime of naivety – and it is clearly dangerous and unwarranted to accuse them of wishing to see anyone locked up.

            On a separate point – Gerry speaks Irish so slowly (as a learner) that I actually could understand much of what he was saying – helped of course in that it was interspersed with dollops of traditional ‘provo-speak’.

            p.s re. the Boston Project – how long before we have an eponymous ballad ?

            • Ah, the rumours about conspiracy theories are running riot even in casual conversations with people. My own experience in the last week is of people who hate SF and Adams no matter what the circumstances and who were virtually crowing at his “comeuppance”. In contrast others I have met were perplexed by his arrest and detention, and many made reference to killings by the British Army and RUC (this is the first time I’ve ever heard anyone outside of Republican circles refer to the killings in Ballymurphy, even if they were hazy on the facts). It was more or less evenly split which for SF is a win given that most voters are unsympathetic. It will be interesting to see the next poll. If there is a fall in percentages how big will it be? Within the margin of error? (And how much will the news media spin it as an anti-Adams/SF “backlash”?).

              SF are playing the game re. the Boston College tapes, etc. They have no choice in it. However some restraint and some self-honesty is required too.

              The Ballad Of Antrim Gaol? 😉

              • re. “However some restraint and some self-honesty is required too.”

                Fair point – it is easier to pursue an individual(s) on than a political party

                re. Ballad – or perhaps an adaption of the Boston Burglar?

                The Boston Project

                It was launched and hailed in Boston
                a town that I know well
                conceived and planned by Ed and Ant
                the truth to you I’ll tell

                etc

  2. Ceannaire

    There is a comment beneath it, pondering why the media reject the claim that Jean McConville was an informer, which quotes The Independent:

    “Mrs McConville was dragged screaming from her children in the Divis flats in west Belfast by a gang of up to 12 men and women after being wrongly accused of informing to the security forces during the height of the conflict.”

    I have also seen those exact words “wrongly accused” used by SKY News, The Times website and BBC in their description of the above.

    These exact words have come from somewhere!

  3. re. “These exact words have come from somewhere”

    Didn’t the police ombudsman find that she wasn’t an informer? That (rightly or wrongly) is presumably the source.

    • O’Loan stated that she found no evidence that Jean McConville was an informer. However strong suspicions remain. Some British military files were denied examination despite the claims of everything being made available. Notably Ed Moloney, one of the authors behind the Boston Tapes controversy, still maintains an open mind on McConville’s relationship with the British Army, and one regiment in particular.

      O’Loan also specifically discounted the story about McConville being killed because she gave a wounded British soldier a drink of water. Yet the news media repeat it as an accepted truth. So they cherry-pick what supports their anti-Republican propaganda.

  4. Ginger

    Even in the unlikely event that Mrs McConville was an informer, did that give the Provisional I.R.A. the right to act as judge, jury and executioner in her case and that of so many others? I say the unlikely event, as it is difficult to imagine how a recently widowed mother of ten young children could have found the time, or energy, to fulfil such a role to any meaningful degree. Her community origin as an East Belfast Protestant may have fueled suspicions against her, or even been enough to condemn her in some peoples’ eyes.
    I presume no civilised human being would seek to excuse such a savage atrocity even if it could be proved beyond doubt that she was supplying information to the army.

    • Jānis

      There were no good guys in that conflict.
      By killing civilians IRA totally destroyed their moral high ground.

    • Fair points, Ginger, and no it did not give (P)IRA the right to execute her. That was wrong and – in my view – a crime. As I have said before the issue is larger than Jean McConville since there are thousands of direct victims and tens of thousands of indirect ones. That is why I favour a general amnesty tied to a tribunal into all deaths.

      On the reasons for McConville’s death I note that Ed Moloney, the only journalist to properly investigate the case (as opposed to reporters or newspaper columnists), seems to have kept an open mind on the issue of her relationship with the British Forces. If it was proved that Jean McConville was indeed a British spy and informer it would not excuse here death but it would certainly require the blame for her death to be apportioned to more than just the (P)IRA.

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