Saturday 3 December 2016

Truth a one-way street for evasive Gerry Adams

Garda Jerry McCabe may be dead, but questions posed by his murder remain to be answered

Eilis O'Hanlon

Published 12/06/2016 | 02:30

Ann McCabe and Stacey McCabe speaking to the media outside Adare Garda Station in Limerick at the 20th anniversary of the death of Detective Jerry McCabe, who was shot dead as an IRA gang carried out a post office raid in the village of Adare on June 7, 1996 Photo: Brian Gavin Press 22
Ann McCabe and Stacey McCabe speaking to the media outside Adare Garda Station in Limerick at the 20th anniversary of the death of Detective Jerry McCabe, who was shot dead as an IRA gang carried out a post office raid in the village of Adare on June 7, 1996 Photo: Brian Gavin Press 22

The main BBC news bulletins on Thursday afternoon led with the finding by Michael Maguire, police ombudsman for Northern Ireland, that collusion between elements of the State security services and loyalist paramilitaries was a "significant feature" in the 1994 Loughinisland attack.

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That was the night six Catholic men were murdered in the Co Down village's Heights Bar as they watched Ireland play Italy in the World Cup. Dr Maguire says that at least one suspect in the attack by the Ulster Volunteer Force was a police informant.

With the toxic in/out EU referendum dominating the British news agenda, it was a striking expression of the significance of this story. Northern Ireland rarely excites that much interest outside its own borders, not even in Dublin, which is only 100 miles from Belfast and has been directly affected by the conflict. Dr Maguire's report reminds us that the past is not a foreign country, whatever the cliché says, but the place that still informs and shapes us.

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