The Blanket

The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent
Can Catholics Now Trust the Police?


No More Than Blacks Could The FBI in 1964

Fr. Sean Mc Manus, Irish National Caucus • 16 March 2004

CAPITOL HILL. TUESDAY MARCH 16, 2004 - "The Civil Rights Act of 1964 (coupled with the Voting Rights Act of 1965) did for African-Americans, roughly, what the Good Friday Agreement of 1998 did for Catholics in Northern Ireland - created constitutional possibility for equality... But Segregationists still ruled the Deep South, and J Edgar Hoover still ruled the FBI until 1972."

That is how Father Sean Mc Manus, President of the Capitol Hill-based Irish National Caucus, sees the state of policing in Northern Ireland. His comments were made while he attended a Congressional Hearing on policing held by Congressman Chris Smith (R-NJ).

Father Mc Manus went on to explain: "Even with all his goodwill there was still no way that Martin Luther King could urge Blacks in 1964 - 1965 to trust the police or tell them that the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act meant the police-leopard had changed its spots.

"Although I respect Hugh Orde, in the same way I do Tony Blair (for both have brought promising attitude-shifts to Irish affairs, but both, too, have made have made some bad individual judgements), the Special Branch (the nearest NI equivalent to the FBI) has not changed its spots; it still rules the roost, and it still -with the different British Intelligence Agencies - runs murderous agents who have colluded with Unionist/Protestant paramilitaries in State- sponsored assassinations. (Under the Police Act of 2000 the totally discredited RUC Special Branch moved en bloc into the PSNI Special Branch).

How much in control of the Special Branch is Hugh Orde?

Has Hugh Orde totally removed the ethos and the mind -set that flourished under Chief Constable Ronnie Flanigan and all his sectarian predecessors in the RUC?

Can Chief Constable Orde look the Finucanes, the Hamills, the Nelsons -- and the US Congress in the eye -- and truthfully tell them that collusion, sectarianism and anti-Catholic bigotry are no longer part of his police Service, and that the Special Branch no longer has a partisan political agenda?"























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The Blanket - A Journal of Protest & Dissent



All censorships exist to prevent any one from challenging current conceptions and existing institutions. All progress is initiated by challenging current conceptions, and executed by supplanting existing institutions. Consequently the first condition of progress is the removal of censorships.
- George Bernard Shaw

Index: Current Articles

19 March 2004


Other Articles From This Issue:


Terrorism Defined and Exemplified
Don Mullan and James Mullin


Can Catholics Now Trust the Police?
Sean Mc Manus


Sinn Fein & The Hate: Interview with Martin Cunningham

Anthony McIntyre


Splits and Distortions?
George Young


Cellar Dwellers
Brian Mór


The Blanket, Eamonn McCann and the use of language
Gerry Ruddy


From Paras to the FRU
Kathleen O Halloran


"Expose the Awful Truth"
Carrie Twomey


The Maze
Belfast Exposed


Dublin Public Meeting on Referendum
Residents Against Racism


12 March 2004


Try Not to Forget It
Brian Mór


Time to End the Silence on Stakeknife
Martin Ingram


Confident No More
Mick Hall


Sinn Fein & Democracy Be Damned: Interview with Martin Cunningham

Anthony McIntyre


Bobby Tohill: Pub Brawls and Death Threats
Liam O Ruairc


Ardoyne Suicides
Eamonn McCann

Independence Day
David Vance


The Half Loaf of Good Friday Will Never Satisfy
Liam O Comain


Special Exclusive on Special Relationship
Matthew Kavanah


The Proposed UK-US Extradition Treaty: Concerns
Francis Boyle


The Decolonization of Northern Ireland
Francis Boyle




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