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Thread: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

  1. #16
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-44631151

    Some mild criticism from the SF leadership demanding a statement on what access Harris had to British intelligence files in the past.

    Whatever people's views, it is hard not to imagine a scandal erupting eventually when more details on the new Commissioner's past are uncovered. It is hard to believe anyone who operated within an RUC/MI5 intelligence campaign in the past hasn't got their hands dirty at some stage or been involved in concealing or not investigating things MI5 did not want the public to know.

    SF and Harris probably have enough dirt on each other though to keep things as they are at present.

    All of this is coming out drip by drip, but a controversial appointment simply because of public pressure ramped up within the media not to appoint another Garda to the top job is happening in the context of:

    1. The most important thing, which was analysed and covered very well on this site a few years ago-Callinan was illegally and unconstitutionally sacked by Enda Kenny via a proxy civil servant. This is indisputable when we examine the facts of what happened around the time Callinan 'stepped down' and Shatter resigned, both were effectively sackings not approved by Cabinet for political expediency, at least one of which was illegal and unconstitutional and an abuse of power by Enda Kenny. This is important to remember and bring up constantly as a reminder of FG's leaderships' traditional disregard and disdain for the constitutional restrictions on Taoisigh and governments.

    2. O' Sullivan being more of the same and actually arguably more toxic towards whistleblowers and the handling of scandals than her predecessor-at least Callinan was honest enough to admit his disdain for accountability and fair procedures openly, Noreen was a two-faced stalwart of the Department of Justice, and a complete patsy for Fitzgerald, but her dirty tactics brought her master down and surely hastened Kenny's departure too.

    3. Any scandals that erupt due to the security risk of this latest appointment are entirely on Varadkar and his govt. It is not inconceivable that more of his past will come to light and there may well be intelligence assessments of this man eventually required, and public scrutiny of his involvement with Britain's intelligence agency.

    4. Despite the flawed and procedurally corrupt nature of the Gardai at present and for the last few decades, There will surely be people within An Garda Siochana and other State agencies who will question internally and eventually externally the wisdom of appointing a man who has divided loyalties, a controversial and hidden past, and who poses a potential major security risk to the State as Garda Commissioner.

    5. There are legitimate questions here over National Security risks, intelligence risks, and State infiltration risks as well as potential Constitutional hazards should anything that undermines the new Garda Commissioner's authority or loyalty to the State come into question during his tenure in charge of the Gardai. A detailed profile and assessment of his past is needed but where can it come from?

    6.As a BBC report by Vincent Kearney, which I have linked above in a previous comment of mine shows, Whatever about Garda co-operation with the PSNI and the British intelligence services in recent decades, especially since the end of the Troubles, the Gardai have previously and publicly displayed annoyance at Drew Harris for his involvement in an investigation that claimed The Gardai were involved in the killing of two RUC officers in the early 90s.

    7. Surprise, surprise one of his first comments seemed to be scare stories or fantastical claims that we cannot discount the potential for widespread collusion within the CURRENT Garda force with the 'IRA'(yeah the various tiny splinter groups that definitely don't make up a modern Army or major Terrorist threat, but rather relatively minor criminal gangs).

    8.FG no doubt will have him on a tight leash to bait and ***** SF and other political opponents with, which is another subtle abuse of power, appointing someone with a similar historical and political outlook to the govt. is hardly the reason the appointments and sackings of Garda Commissioner's and top Gardai/security officials are constitutionally the responsibility of Cabinet(which re-enforces my original point, FG felt the need to sack Callinan without even bothering to convene an obligatory cabinet meeting when it suited them politically, now what's to stop them appointing someone of West brit anti Republican stock simply for the sake of it, and to bolster their own grip on control of the State?).

    Whatever we think of the Gardai, the Bunreacht and the State, procedures, restrictions, security norms and relatively internal appointments to the Gardai are all constitutional norms to protect the security of the State from undue outside influence or abuse of power. FG are disregarding these deliberately and there is some agenda at play here, whether British, FG, MI5 or what, but you put all of these things together within the context of the last 7 years of FG rule and you have potential and grave violations of constitutional norms and possible or even likely security risks simply for the main governing party's political expediency.
    Last edited by Apjp; 28-06-2018 at 03:51 PM.

  2. #17
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    Still waiting for a better suggestion.

  3. #18
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    And contrary to popular opinion, the Gardai and the British State have not had a 100% perfect relationship in recent years. As well as some friction with some investigations in the North of which Harris was a part, the Gardai have also been refused files on the security risk of a British agent, Mark Kennedy, illegally operating within the Irish State in order to cause social disruption and disrupt political campaigning.

    Now the Gardai may well be no strangers to disrupting some campaigns themselves, but this was a grave violation of Irish sovereignty, an actual clandestine act of espionage in the Irish State by a foreign agent, who claimed to have the support of his paymasters, and then the British refused to release the files on Kennedy, as they do whenever an agency of the Irish State asks for same, be it on the bombings in the seventies, the various border incursions and illegal Mole operations within our State or the Glennane Gang or other British murders of Irish civilians, violations of Irish sovereignty or human rights in the past by the British State.

    National Security is important in all of this too. If we treat it as a joke, and no big deal, and flagrantly disregard proper screening of candidates in appointments, so will our neighbours and anyone else for that matter. It will be open season on people's rights and the State's independence in any minor aspect that we remain independent of outside influence if we keep on this path.
    Last edited by Apjp; 28-06-2018 at 03:55 PM.

  4. #19
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    Quote Originally Posted by Richardbouvet View Post
    Still waiting for a better suggestion.
    What would have been wrong with appointing Maurice McCabe or John Wilson if we are serious about respecting those who speak out against wrongdoing?

  5. #20
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    Harris was also part of the investigation team when the PSNI arrested Gerry Adams in 2014 over the 1972 killing of Jean McConville, depsite having no proof of his involvement in same. Vincent Kearney at BBC also highlighted this in recent days in the original link I have posted above, but all of this taken into context looks like a very very political appointment by FG possibly with some outside influence over the politics of same.

  6. #21
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/n...-37056285.html

    Mr Harris has spent 34 years as a police officer in both the RUC and the PSNI. He has also worked on placement in Scotland and undergone training with the FBI.

    His father Alwyn, also a senior RUC officer, was killed by an IRA bomb in 1989.

    Speaking later on Wednesday Ms McDonald cited the serious concerns expressed by Stephen Travers of the Miami Showband and the Relatives For Justice group.

    Five people membered of the Miami Showband were killed by the UVF in Co Down in July 1975.

    Survivor Stephen Travers said that Mr Harris had blocked efforts to get to the truth of the killings and called his appointment "a hammer blow to every victim of collusion".

    Stephen Travers, one of the survivors of the Miami Showband massacre in 19753
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    Stephen Travers, one of the survivors of the Miami Showband massacre in 1975
    Despite her concerns Ms McDonald said that Sinn Fein will seek to work constructively with the new Commissioner.

    "I think it is appropriate that Mr Harris makes a statement and addresses those real and deep seated concerns," the Dublin Central TD said.

    “Mr Travers has spoken of RUC collusion and the old RUC culture of political policing and cover-up.

    “He regards Mr Harris as part of that culture which has denied people the truth.

    “Similar concerns have been voiced by the Relatives for Justice campaign group.

    "They say that Mr Harris has 'at every opportunity' sought to thwart families in 'the search for truth and accountability' and that 'he has had a stranglehold on legacy and acted partially and with vested interests at times'."

    Carnage: the scene of the ambush in 19893
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    Carnage: the scene of the ambush in 1989
    The Sinn Fein President also drew attention to Mr Harris testimony before the Smithwick Tribunal.

    The tribunal investigated events surrounding the killings of two RUC officers by the IRA in Co Armagh in March 1989, it was found that the Gardai had colluded with the IRA in the murders.

    “The issue of his evidence at the Smithwick Tribunal being described as 'nonsense' by a former Garda Commissioner has arisen," Ms McDonald said.

    “The question of what intelligence Mr Harris has had access to in terms of British state collusion in the Dublin & Monaghan Bombings has also arisen.

    "Mr Harris must develop an ethos of transparency, best practice and accountability within An Garda Siochana."

    Mrs McDonald said Mr Harris must distance himself from the past culture of the RUC.

    "We need to get police reform right," she said.

    "To do this he must earn the confidence and trust of the public, particularly in relation to his involvement with legacy cases.

    "He must demonstrate that he in no way subscribes to the toxic, vindictive policing culture which necessitated the disbandment of the RUC.

    “Taoiseach, what assurances will you give that the new Garda Commissioner will play the part demanded by that office in exposing collusion, uncovering the truth, and holding those responsible to account?"

  7. #22
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    A few independent voices/independent politicians have been speaking out here and there too, this particular one is notable as it comes from a politician close to the border who would have some familiarity into how the RUC/MI5 used to act along the border.

    https://www.donegalnow.com/news/done...ssioner/233932


    15:41 Thursday 28th of June 2018
    A Donegal county councillor has contacted the Minister for Justice to express his concerns at the appointment of Drew Harris as the new Garda Commissioner.

    Mr Harris, who currently serves as a Deputy Chief Constable of the PSNI, was selected for the top garda job earlier this week.

    Mr Harris, is to take up the post in September, will replace Noirin O'Sullivan as the states top police officer.

    However the surprise appointment of Mr Harris, has been met with opposition from some quarters, including Independent Donegal county councillor, Micheál Choilm Mac Giolla Easbuig.

    In an email sent to the Minister for Justice, Cllr Mac Giolla Easbuig expressed his 'deep concerns' which include state security and the risk to transparency in policing.


    "In the first instance, it is a matter of record that in the course of Mr Harris’s duties with the PSNI he was tasked to liaise closely with the British intelligence agency MI5," Cllr Mac Giolla Easbuig said. "It is difficult to believe that such a connection can ever be definitively terminated, thereby potentially putting Irish state security at risk of being compromised by a foreign intelligence agency.

    He added: "In the second instance, I wish to quote from a ruling by Mr Justice Treacy in the Belfast High Court last July. Commenting on the refusal in 2010 of the then PSNI Assistant Chief Constable Drew Harris to re-open an investigation into the wider questions raised by the activities of the Glenanne gang when the judge accused Drew Harris of an “extreme” abuse of power in closing down this exercise in analysing collusion (http://relativesforjustice.com/wp-co...ion-Report.pdf).

    "While this action by Mr Harris raises questions about state collusion it also points to a disdain for transparency.

    "In light of the above, I would therefore ask that you reconsider the appointment of Mr Harris and to replace him with an officer more likely to command the confidence of the citizens of this country."

  8. #23
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    Quote Originally Posted by pluralist View Post
    Inclined to agree. I would be of the view that this new guy should be given a chance.

    It was a British Tory who devised the Patten reforms for the RUC. He has said recently it was the thing he has done in his career of which he is most proud.
    Tell me, are you living in the future and thus educated without any history lessons, as per FG plans ?
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
    — Jean-Paul Sartre

  9. #24
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    British State Security did not merely obstruct information about murder. Collusion in many cases was direction, and direct involvement by agents. Murder. And we are worrying about Noreen's mobile phones and Callinan's massaging of statistics ?
    “ We cannot withdraw our cards from the game. Were we as silent and mute as stones, our very passivity would be an act. ”
    — Jean-Paul Sartre

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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    Quote Originally Posted by Apjp View Post
    What would have been wrong with appointing Maurice McCabe or John Wilson if we are serious about respecting those who speak out against wrongdoing?
    Much as I have great respect for both of those individuals, it would clearly be inappropriate to appoint either given that the issues that they raised are still under review and investigation by the relevant tribunal.

    So I wonder if in fact your response to Richard's perfectly reasonable question is serious (and I'm far from a Labour party supporter, for the record).
    "If you go far enough to either extreme of the political spectrum, Communist or fascist, you'll find hard-eyed men with guns who believe that anybody who doesn't think as they do should be incarcerated or exterminated. " - Jim Garrison, Former DA, New Orleans.

  11. #26
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    British State Security did not merely obstruct information about murder. Collusion in many cases was direction, and direct involvement by agents. Murder. And we are worrying about Noreen's mobile phones and Callinan's massaging of statistics ?
    I am not about to accuse a former MI5 Agent who has now somehow wormed his way into heading up the top security apparatus of the Irish State of anything that serious, as we are bound by Irish law on this forum. That the British State and the organisations of which he was a longstanding stalwart did same is in no doubt, and we know for a fact he obstructed justice in these respects and refused to investigate certain gangs or people and refused to release certain files.

    However the simple fact of the matter is that the MI5 have form in all of these areas and yes you are right, internal procedural corruption and favours granted within An Garda Siochana and even the vicious smear campaign against McCabe all pale in significance to the potential threats posed by the new Garda Commissioner, about whom we know very little, what we do know in respect of his covering up of files in relation to the British State's murder campaign with via Glennane that was visited on Irish citizens and other files, and in respect of refusing to investigate certain people in the contexts aforementioned, and his previous form in arresting the SF Party leader in the run up to a political election, not to mind his testimony to the Smithwick campaign and his current IRA under the bed comments(saying that the current Garda force is probably riddled with gang members) can all be perceived as the actions of someone who is very hostile towards Irish people and the Irish State's Constitutional norms as set out in law and in the Bunreacht indeed.

    His fanciful scare-stories on the 'IRA' infiltrating the Gardai in this day and age in particular smack of old school imperial racist stereotypes against Irish people and a pretty outdated British view of the world that is really pretty dangerous, not to mind insulting to our intelligence. Classic diversion tactics.

    You would hope the Garda Ombudsman, the new Policing Authority and G2 will keep tabs on this man but political scrutiny is equally important. The abuses of the Gardai in the past are almost trivial compared to what this man may have done in the past on procedural corruption alone, not to mind the security risk and very grave intelligence risk he now likely poses.

    The SF leadership, a BBC NI reporter and a prominent Independent Donegal Councillor(who contacted Flanagan's office directly) are among the outspoken few doing their job and questioning this in some respects. It isn't some far left conspiracy to worry about infiltration of the State, espionage, a cop with form on vicious cover ups in relation to some murder investigations and political partisanship in relation to others where it was advantageous to embarrass a sitting Republican Party leader, and as I keep repeating any serious politicians and civil servants or servants of the State out there ought to be aware of the risk to National Security and Intelligence this poses. FG just want the media and everyone else to accept this guy as some noble outsider who naturally must be better than any serving member or Irish citizen for the job 'cos of his experience' without looking into the brutal and appalling nature of that experience, from what we know.

    I just love how all his cheerleaders don't actually bother their holes to do any homework on him, cos sure the Gardai must be the worst cops in the world. A man who covers up for State murder and obstructs justice is about as bent a cop as you can get, in fact he's downright criminal.

    Callinan and O'Sullivan directed smear campaigns, covered up penalty points scandals and crushed dissent, but they never covered up for those who committed mass murder or arrested a party leader to make a political point. From what we actually know, and the info is out there for anyone who cares to bother their hole doing some digging(it took me 10-15 minutes to find 3-4 good reports about him), This man is dangerous.
    Last edited by Apjp; 28-06-2018 at 07:06 PM.

  12. #27
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    Tell me, are you living in the future and thus educated without any history lessons, as per FG plans ?
    No, I am not living in the future. I fully agree that this new Commissioner's on-the-job performance should be monitored carefully and closely. I understand your point that he reports to an FG minister for justice, but they are very much a minority government, there are plenty of opposition TD's who have a proven record of whistleblowing and using their parliamentary privilege, when appropriate, to make the public aware of corrupt practices, and we still have a (somewhat) free media.

    I am merely arguing that the guy might be given a chance. If he turns out to be what you and Apjp claim he is, fair enough, I will join you in calling for him to be removed from his office.


    Bear in mind Chris Patten, a former Tory minister, was given the job of reforming the RUC and the resistance to his proposals all came from the unionist side. The nationalist side thought that he did a pretty good job in identifying the issues and the reforms that were so badly needed in the RUC.


    Would you prefer a Yank to be appointed as Garda Commissioner? I suspect not. But even you did, it is not clear that any senior American coppers even bothered applying for the role.
    "If you go far enough to either extreme of the political spectrum, Communist or fascist, you'll find hard-eyed men with guns who believe that anybody who doesn't think as they do should be incarcerated or exterminated. " - Jim Garrison, Former DA, New Orleans.

  13. #28
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    Quote Originally Posted by C. Flower View Post
    British State Security did not merely obstruct information about murder. Collusion in many cases was direction, and direct involvement by agents. Murder. And we are worrying about Noreen's mobile phones and Callinan's massaging of statistics ?
    I think that is unworthy of you. You know perfectly well that the AGS whistleblowers have raised much more serious issues than those.
    "If you go far enough to either extreme of the political spectrum, Communist or fascist, you'll find hard-eyed men with guns who believe that anybody who doesn't think as they do should be incarcerated or exterminated. " - Jim Garrison, Former DA, New Orleans.

  14. #29
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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    His cheerleaders on here and elsewhere notably have no comment on his past, and what he said and did at tribunals and inquiries.

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    Default Re: British Take Over An Garda Siochána - Appointment of PSNI Second in Command as Chief Commissioner

    Quote Originally Posted by pluralist View Post
    No, I am not living in the future. I fully agree that this new Commissioner's on-the-job performance should be monitored carefully and closely. I understand your point that he reports to an FG minister for justice, but they are very much a minority government, there are plenty of opposition TD's who have a proven record of whistleblowing and using their parliamentary privilege, when appropriate, to make the public aware of corrupt practices, and we still have a (somewhat) free media.

    I am merely arguing that the guy might be given a chance. If he turns out to be what you and Apjp claim he is, fair enough, I will join you in calling for him to be removed from his office.


    Bear in mind Chris Patten, a former Tory minister, was given the job of reforming the RUC and the resistance to his proposals all came from the unionist side. The nationalist side thought that he did a pretty good job in identifying the issues and the reforms that were so badly needed in the RUC.


    Would you prefer a Yank to be appointed as Garda Commissioner? I suspect not. But even you did, it is not clear that any senior American coppers even bothered applying for the role.
    You are aware there are countries besides 'Northern Ireland', Britain and America?

    We are only going on the information that is out there on what this man actually HAS DONE AS A COP in the past.

    These aren't conspiracy theories, the victims of the forgotten and the surviving family members of the Miami Showband massacre, not to mind a few Gardai themselves have been far from impressed with this guy's shady conduct in the past and his comments at tribunals and public inquiries. In fact more than a few of them have questioned his motives, record and integrity.

    My prediction is this guy will be far more toxic than Callinan and O'Sullivan put together.

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