Wednesday 21 March 2018

Kevin Myers: The Miami Showband massacre was one of the most depraved atrocities of the Troubles

THE official confirmation by the Historical Enquiries Team of collusion in the Miami Showband massacre of 1975 should surprise no one. It was widely known that UDR members of the UVF were involved and there was no serious attempt at the time to cleanse the UDR of loyalist terrorists. This was an utter scandal.

But it doesn't stop there. Most of the UVF men responsible for the Miami massacre had probably been involved in the Dublin bombings the year before. Within a week of these bombings, I met a garda detective inspector in Dublin, who showed me a list of suspects. The only surname that I remember is Somerville, belonging to two UVF brothers, unspeakably evil associates of the supremely wicked Robin Jackson. I believe he too was one of the Dublin bombers.

However, the Dublin government chose not to seek the extradition of the UVF men who had caused the biggest loss of life in the Troubles. Quite simply, the State didn't want later to have to extradite IRA terrorists as a quid pro quo for having got the Dublin bombers. There is no documentary trail to prove this assertion, just missing files and conspicuously discreet inertia. Thereafter, the UVF felt they were immune to the rule of law; and they were right, were they not? Thus the Miami Showband massacre; in scale not the worst of the atrocities, but in its diabolical inventiveness against such a group of harmless and naïve young men, easily one of the most depraved.

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