Friday 9 December 2016

To understand the Republic

Published 14/02/2016 | 02:30

The Fianna Fail leader, Micheal Martin, in a powerful intervention, challenged the audacity of the Sinn Fein leader, Gerry Adams to present himself as a civil libertarian by his insistence that the Offences Against the State Act be repealed and the Special Criminal Court be abolished. Photo: PA
The Fianna Fail leader, Micheal Martin, in a powerful intervention, challenged the audacity of the Sinn Fein leader, Gerry Adams to present himself as a civil libertarian by his insistence that the Offences Against the State Act be repealed and the Special Criminal Court be abolished. Photo: PA

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

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So began an editorial in this newspaper on June 30, 1996, under a headline 'The sense of duty to protect democracy itself', in reference to a quotation usually attributed to Edmund Burke, the Irish statesman.

Unusually, the editorial was personally signed by the then editor, the late Aengus Fanning, in the aftermath of the murder of our colleague Veronica Guerin 20 years ago this year.

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