North Belfastman slain by Provisionals

The Provisionals are being blamed for the callous death of 33-year-old Belfastman Andy Kearney on July 19. The victim, a father of four young girls was at home with his girlfriend and two-week-old daughter when gunmen burst into his flat in the New Lodge area of north Belfast shortly after midnight.

The five-man gang dragged Andy Kearney out of his home and into the lift where he was shot three times in the legs. His assailants made sure to rip the telephone from the wall before leaving.

Kearney’s girlfriend had to run to a friend’s house to call an ambulance wasting valuable time. An artery in his leg had been severed and Andy Kearney bled to death. His mother, Maureen Kearney, has no doubt where the blame for her son’s death lies.

He had been threatened several times in the past by the Provisionals. It is believed he had been involved in an altercation in a West Belfast bar with a senior Provo figure a few weeks ago.

Maureen Kearney who describes herself as a Republican, said she had gone to prominent members of both the Provisionals political and military organisations to have them lift the threats on her son’s life, and they had denied any involvement.

She denied her son was involved in any anti-social activity. Past threats on his life included one in the name of Direct Action Against Drugs — a cover name for the Provos.

As the Provisionals further compromise with the British and their Unionist underlings, it is inevitable that they will indulge in personal vendettas and other strong-arm tactics on the nationalist community. Britain has successfully corralled both loyalist and nationalist Irish into their allotted areas. Both the Provisionals and the loyalist death squads have gained a position of power in their communities, and what they have they intend to hold.

Meanwhile the sentinel British bulldog looks on knowing its Irish colony remains intact.

Hammond Lane foundry for arms melt down?

At the stroke of midnight, June 30, the process of the surrender of arms agreed to at the Stormont talks officially began. The announcement was made in Belfast the previous day by General John de Chastelain, chairman of the so-called Independent International Commission on decommissioning (this body was established by Britain and her NATO allies in Washington.

Both de Chastelain’s parents worked for British Military Intelligence in World War II. An amnesty for all weapons handed over within two years and an assurance that no forensic tests will be carried out on such weapons is part of the deal.

Those involved in the decommissioning process will also be exempt from charges of possession. General de Chastelain said the two schemes for decommissioning jointly established by the London and Dublin governments, would be “as simple as possible” and “as flexible as possible.”

The weapons can be destroyed either by the provision of information to the decommissioning body or by the verifiable destruction of weapons by the armed groups themselves.

Regulations to provide for decommissioning were signed by the Dublin Minister for Justice on June 29 and by his British counterpart the following day.

Meanwhile, the Provisionals and their ilk need no longer worry about chilblains. They are now in from the cold and can warm themselves up at the great bonfires in Dublin’s Hammond Lane.

It was revealed on RTÉ’s 1pm news on June 19 that Dublin’s famous scrap merchants site, Hammond Lane Foundry on Sir John Rogerson’s Quay is to be the location for the great melt down of the surrendered arms.

It is understood de Chastelain has already visited Hammond Lane and has earmarked it for its metal crushing and smelting facilities.

A spokesperson for Hammond Lane refused to confirm the company’s role in the decommissioning process but said that the foundry had handled a number of contracts for the 26-County Department of Defence.

Greenham women object to Orange Order slur

Women anti-nuclear campaigners who have been peacefully protesting against weapons of annihilation for 17 years are demanding an apology from the Orange order for linking them to the Drumcree stand-off. A number of Orange spokesmen made the comparison between the scaled-down protest on Drumcree Hill, following the death of the Quinn children, and the women’s peace group in Berkshire, England.

In an open letter to Orange Order Grand Master Robert Saulters the Greenham Common women said they objected to having their protest compared to the situation at Drumcree. The letter stated: “We take this use of our name as a serious matter. Our camp has lasted almost 17 years and is still here. We work in non-violent ways against the nuclear weapons of our own country and all the nuclear weapons of the world.”

The campaigners spoke of their work as being “vitally important for the whole of humanity”. The letter went on: “We object to being referred to your encampment because you are part of the British state.” The women are asking for a withdrawal of the statements and an apology from the Orange Order.

‘Not one cent’ for Stormont parties

Irish Republican Poster in the United States
“Since the wise men have not spoken, I speak that am only a fool; A fool that hath loved folly, Yea more than the wise men their books or their counting houses, or their quiet homes, or their fame in men’s mouths”— PH Pearse.

There is plenty of money a-begging for those willing to stoop to such levels, soliciting is the order of the day for those willing to sell their souls to the counting houses of Wall Street etc.

On May 28, Provisional leader, Gerry Adams was the centre of attention at a $1,000 a head function in the centre of America’s financial sector.

On May 27, the Provisional leader was feted at a $250 a go cocktail reception in Manhattan’s plush Plaza Hotel.

But one group of Irish Americans were not impressed by Adams’ salesmanship, the Irish Republican Movement in America were to be seen handing out leaflets during the fund-raisers urging Americans not to contribute to “any participants” in the “British Stormont in Ireland.”

Bellaghy residents object to Orange parade

Residents of the Co Derry village of Bellaghy have slammed a decision of Britain’s Parades Commission to allow an Apprentice Boys ‘feeder’ parade through their district on Saturday, August 8.

“It is a completely unnecessary parade,” claims residents spokesperson Jim Hasson, “the band is from Castledawson, which is about four-and-a-miles away. I am totally surprised that they have been given permission to march through this village. They will march in their own village that morning and then they want to come here.”

Speaking on August 3, Jim Hasson said the residents of the predominately nationalist village were to hold a meeting to discuss the implications of the ruling. The attitude of the village’s inhabitants to Orangemen stormtrooping their way through their neighbourhood did not impress these over-aged Hitler youth.

Apprentice Boy Robert Overend said it was “no surprise” to him. “The residents association objects to everything — they are born objectors,” he said and tut-tutted about local objections against those bootboys “walking peacefully to church on July 12.”

On Sunday, August 2 it was the turn of the Co Fermanagh village of Newtownbutler to suffer the Orange supremacist insult to their community. Nationalists staged a silent roadside vigil as the Royal Black Institution passed through their village.

Three children killed in loyalist firebombing in Co Antrim

The Quinn ome in Ballymoney, Co. Antrim where three young boys were burned to death in a loyalist petrol bomb attak on July 12. Three young children died in a sectarian arson attack on a house in Ballymoney, Co Antrim in the early hours of Sunday, July 12, as the Drumcree stand-off continued into its eighth day.

A petrol-bomb was thrown into the home of Christine Quinn (29), a Catholic, and her Protestant partner, Raymond Craig (31) in the mainly loyalist estate of Carnany, Ballymoney, Co Antrim around 4.30am. Neighbours reported hearing a loud bang as it exploded in the back sitting-room of the house which was swiftly engulfed in flames. Fire engines arrived quickly but the house was well alight.

The three Quinn brothers, in front, from left, Jason (7), Mark (9) and Richard (10), who died in the loyalist petrol-bombing of their home in Ballymoney on July12. The fourth brother, Lee (behind, 12) survived as he was staying at his grandmother's in Rasharkin.

Three of the couple’s four children, Richard (10), Mark (9) and Jason (7) Quinn, who were in the house died in the flames. Their eldest son, Lee, was staying with his grandmother in Rasharkin, Co Antrim, a few miles away. The parents escaped from the house and Christine Quinn was treated in hospital for minor injuries and shock, while Raymond Craig sustained cuts. Both parents tried to return to the house to save their children but were beaten back by what firefighters at the scene described as “ferocious flames”. When fire crews using breathing apparatus managed to reach the children they had already perished in the flames.

Local people said that sectarian tension had been rising in the area since the start of the Drumcree standoff and some nationalist families had received bullets in the post. The Quinn family, who have lived in the Carnany estate for 20 years, had been targeted by loyalists in the past. They left the Six Counties and only returned last year when they believed it was safe. Relatives said they had suffered intimidation since and were awaiting a housing transfer. They had previously moved to different parts of the estate but had not managed to escape intimidation and on one occasion Raymond Craig was shot by loyalists. The children’s grandmother, Irene Quinn, was ordered to leave the estate last week and her home was petrol-bombed. A local person who asked not to be named said that every night last week there had been shouting and running noises in the estate as local loyalists intimidated the last few Catholics out of the place.

The children had been raised as Protestants but their mother has decided to give them a Catholic burial in her home village of Rasharkin on Tuesday, July 14.

* As a mark of respect to the bereaved family residents on the lower Ormeau Road in Belfast did not block the path of the Orange parade which marched through their area on Monday, July 13 but instead held a silent, black flag protest as the Orangemen passed by.

‘You are not safe’ — Derry loyalist tells nationalists

Pro-British elements continued their policy of ethnic cleansing with the shooting of two Derry brothers in an early morning attack in the Waterside area of the city on July 27.

Frankie and Anthony Creane were watching television at their Garvagh Court home in the predominantly loyalist Caw estate when a gang of up to six men smashed the door shortly after 12.30am and cornered the brothers and immediately letting fire. Frankie Creane (53) was shot in the leg and was said to be in a stable condition that evening in Derry’s Altnagelvin Hospital, while Anthony (49), who sustained bullet wounds to the upper leg and groin was taken to Belfast’s Royal Victoria Hospital where his condition was described as critical following surgery.

The shooting is believed to have been carried out by the pro-British UDA/UFF death squad. Although the death squad is allegedly on ceasefire, it is seen as a less stable body than the UVF. Following the attack UDA/UFF mouthpiece David Nicholl of their political front the UDP delivered a sinister get-out warning to nationalists in the area.

“I am very concerned about Catholics living in the area,” he railed. Urging nationalists to consider vacating the area following these “grave threats”, Nicholl warned, “I can’t guarantee their future well-being.”

Relatives of the victims claim the death squad were intent on killing the brothers. The men’s niece, Jackie Lyons, said the gang put a gun to Frankie Creane’s head but he escaped with his life in the melee.

Dean slates Orange Order

A prominent Church of Ireland clergyman has denounced the Orange Order for “its contribution to the deaths of the Quinn children”.

In a statement of July 15 the Dean of Christ’s Church Cathedral, Dublin, the very Rev John Patterson said: “These young children died, deliberately burned to death in their homes and all because of a couple of yards of road”.

While accepting that members of the order were not directly involved in the children’s deaths, the Dean commented: “but their unyielding attitude and the support they are accepting from off-line thugs means their hands are not clean.”

In a sermon on Sunday July 12, the day of the massacre, Dean Patterson spoke of shame: “The Church of Ireland says it has no links with the Orange Order. That’s only a sort of half-truth we should be ashamed to make. Of course there is no official link. Nor do the Presbyterian or Methodist Churches have direct links. But many of their members condone this on the grounds that most Orangemen are quiet and peaceable members of the community.”

Dean Patterson went on, “but what cannot be condoned, and what must be condemned is the official attitude of the Order that claims the right to walk wherever and whenever it wishes. That claim has never been cleanly condemned by any Church Synod, Presbyterian Assembly or Methodist Conference.”

He accused the Churches of having “funked” the issue and said that until we come to accept “the common name of Irish men and women, whatever their political or religious affiliations, these troubles would continue.”

Dublin snubs boys funeral

The tragic deaths of three young children at the hands of pro-British elements in Ballymoney on July 12 does not command the respect of the Dublin administration or the 26-County President.

Inquiries by concerned members of the public as to how the Dublin regime might mark the tragedy were treated with indifference by both offices. “The Taoiseach considered the situation to be so sensitive that it would not be appropriate for him or a representative to attend the funeral”, confirmed a spokesperson for Bertie Ahern.

“The President is her own person. She could have decided for herself to go. It’s not down to the Government to decide that for her”, the spokesperson added and offered the pathetic excuse that an open letter of sympathy to the family displaying the state symbol would be inappropriate.

A similar response came from the office of Mary McAleese. Neither office sent a representative to the funeral on July 14. This despite the fact that the then 26-County President Mary Robinsonfound no difficulty in attending a memorial service for Tim Parry and Jonathan Ball killed in a Provisional bombing in Warrington, England.

Irish children don’t rate so high with the Dublin elite it seems. McAleese did not deem it “insensitive” or “inappropriate” to entertain over 100 Orangemen in the Vice-Regal lodge while nationalists were being burned out of their homes across occupied Ireland.

But then maybe she’s just trying to prove she’s not a croppy after all, but an equal British underling in a “Council of the British Isles.”

Starry Plough

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August 8, 1998

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