Seanad Éireann - Volume 80 - 30 April, 1975

Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill, 1975: Second Stage (Resumed).

Question again proposed: “That the Bill be now read a Second Time.”

Debate resumed on the following amendment:

To omit all words after “That” and substitute the following:—

“Seanad Éireann declines to give a second reading to the Bill on the grounds that it contains no provision for an all-Ireland Court, is unworkable, inconsistent with Ireland's obligations under the European Convention of Human Rights and repugnant to the Constitution, in that it contravenes Articles 3 and 38.”

—(Senator Lenihan)

Mr. Russell: When the debate was adjourned last night I had made reference to the fact that notwithstanding what appeared to be the intractable opposition of the Fianna Fáil Senators to the Bill there existed a consensus in regard to the principles and objectives of the Bill, the principle being set out quite clearly in the Law Enforcement Commission's report and reiterated by the Minister in his introductory speech to this Bill, namely, to bring to trial persons alleged to have committed crimes of violence however motivated in any part of Ireland, irrespective of the part of Ireland in which they are located.

I should like to repeat that there is room for genuine and constructive contributions to the Bill to improve it, if such is needed. I was very disappointed, as I am sure others have been, by the fact that the Leader of [740] the Opposition, Senator Lenihan, had apparently laid down the lines which his party were to follow, namely, that the Bill was unamendable and should be opposed tooth and nail. There is an obligation on us, as a House of the Oireachtas, if we are satisfied with the principles or objectives of a measure, at least to discuss that measure in a calm and constructive method and to advance good reasons why the Bill should be altered. Unfortunately, that has not been a policy adopted in this House and we are now faced with the situation where on one side, the Government side, there is a genuine effort being made to discuss the Bill with its merits and possible defects and on the other side an intractable opposition to the Bill as such. It is very difficult in such circumstances to carry on a rational discussion.

The Bill has been challenged mainly on two or three grounds. Number one, obviously a very important ground is that the Bill is not constitutional. Both Senators Robinson and E. Ryan put forward the premises that the Special Criminal Court is not empowered to try cases committed outside the jurisdiction of the State and pointed to the Constitution in that regard which, while emphasising the desire to extend the jurisdiction of this Government to the entire island, states that the laws of the State are limited in their application to what was in the geographical area known at that time as Saorstát Éireann, the Irish Free State or the Twenty-six Counties. The two Senators contended that on those grounds the Special Criminal Court is not constitutionally entitled to try cases for crimes committed outside the State. That is a valid point and one I hope the Minister will answer in due time. At least it is a constructive point. It is getting to the nitty gritty of the Bill and shows that at least some of the Senators' minds are not completely shut to the contents of the Bill.

Another point put forward without reasonable supporting evidence was that the Bill will be unworkable. I presume, again quoting Senator Lenihan, that if a Bill is unworkable it it unamendable. It should be demonstrated by Senators from the opposite [741] side why the Bill is unworkable. I know that doubts have been expressed. I appreciate the sincerity of some of the contributions made by speakers on the other side, even though their reasoning was activated more by emotion concerning events of the past or more recent events which we all deplore and decry. Other speakers said that it is a bad Bill and left it at that. It would have taken a lot longer than that so to describe the Bill.

We are told about constitutionality of the Bill or the doubts about it. In the context of the Constitution, we should also take into consideration the defence of our Constitution and the defence of the institutions of the Constitution, including the Army and the Garda forces. Under our democratic Constitution the institutions of the State have been established and nobody has the right to take up arms on behalf of the State, except the Army and the Garda in control of the State. Crimes committed in the name of the State, for whichever allegedly patriotic purposes, cannot be done while we have one Army and one Garda force acting under the authority of Dáil Éireann, properly constituted, and democratically elected representatives of the people. No man has the right to usurp the functions of the Army or the Garda, and that should be clearly spelt out. We should be loud in our defence of the work of our Army and Garda and loud in praise of the difficult task they are carrying out.

This Bill proposes to deal with crimes committed in Ireland against Irish people, north and south. It is important to emphasise north and south. It treats Ireland as one country and one people, notwithstanding the Border. Judging from some of the speeches made during the course of this debate. I get the impression that there is almost, perhaps unconsciously, a tendency to divide the country in a way that we do not want to see it divided. There seems to be a giving away of the old aspiration of having the country united again. It can be said for this Bill that it treats the country as one and tries to bring to justice the perpetrators of crimes committed in any part of the country.

[742] The Bill further demonstrates a willingness to act by mutual effort. That is a prerequisite of the Bill. In other words, if a similar measure is not passed through Westminster Parliament this whole scheme of proposals becomes inopportune. It is essential to the working of the measure that both Governments pass comparable measures. If this is done and if the Bill then becomes an Act and is given a fair opportunity and co-operation North and South of the Border, I believe it will have a significant effect in abating violence on both sides of the Border and showing at the same time our desire on both sides to evade violence and to bring peace and conciliation to our people.

As I have said, I accept that some Senators who have spoken against the Bill have obviously been moved by genuine concern about its workability. Some of the reasons for their objections have origins in past events and some in recent events involving the shameful and one-sided activities of the British Army, the RUC and the UDR in the North. Other speakers gave the impression of less sincerity and appeared to have as their objective in their opposition to the Bill purely political motives possibly allied to the need to paper over stresses and strains within their own ranks. None of these motives, whether genuine or otherwise, has justified the attempt to wreck this Bill.

For too long in the south we have been accused of neglecting our fellow countrymen in the North. There have been fiery speeches at election times seeming to accept Partition, not in the political sense but also in a psychological sense. This Bill gives us an opportunity to demonstrate our concern, and we should accept it, if necessary with amendments.

I should like to make myself quite clear with regard to some of the matters that have been raised in connection with this Bill which touched more on the political and legal implications. I want, like 99 per cent of our people, to see British Army influence withdrawn from the North at the earliest practicable date. Strange as it may seem, I believe a majority of the British people wish [743] the same, possibly for different reasons. I want to see Irishmen of all classes and creeds, north and south, living in friendship and co-operation and pooling their resources of brains and ability to advance the prosperity of their country.

I equally believe that wishful thinking will not produce this desirable end any more than hypocrisy or pseudo-republicanism. Positive steps to help abate violence by bringing men guilty of murder and destruction to justice must be seen as an earnest desire for peace in our country. This Bill is a real and positive step in the right direction and deserves the support of this House.

Dr. Browne: As I said earlier, I am opposing this Bill on principle because it consolidates and extends the scope of the repressive Offences Against the State laws which all of us, particularly my former colleague, Jack McQuillan, over many years have consistently opposed. In more recent years, up to a couple of years ago, this has been supported most eloquently and most convincingly by the very man who is now moving this piece of legislation—Deputy Cooney, the Minister for Justice, who condemned this type of repressive legislation and described it as such in the debate on the Criminal Justice (Amendment) Bill, 1972. He described it as infringing the fundamental basic freedoms which should be enjoyed in any democratic State. Most of the Ministers of the Government now introducing this law supported his and our stand against that type of law with varying degrees of hypocritical, cynical and empty rhetoric. Our then spokesman on the North, Deputy Cruise-O'Brien, the present Taoiseach, and the present Leader of the Labour Party, Deputy Corish, a very short time ago, condemned it as repressive, anti-democratic, illiberal and contrary to the civil liberties and as depriving citizens of their fundamental rights.

It is little wonder that the public have less and less regard and respect for politicians because it is quite obvious that the very powerful, prolonged, sustained opposition which [744] was put up by the then Opposition here and in the other House was not sincerely felt opposition. It was not the serious opposition of serious democrats concerned for liberties, liberal attitudes, rights of individuals. It was the action of petty politicians anxious to score off the then Government and ready to take the first possible opportunity of reinforcing and consolidating this kind of law.

It is repressive without doubt. The most shocking comment expressive of the whole feeling implicit in the law was made by Senator Alexis FitzGerald last night when he made the frightening and to me horrifying threat that if terror is used then we will use greater terror.

That is not the kind of language which should be used by serious senior mature legislators in a society such as ours. To him this is the greater terror. It is surprising from Senator FitzGerald because most of us know that we can expect, usually, valuable worthwhile contributions from him on this kind of thing.

It is dangerous legislation. It is surprisingly dangerous legislation because there is so much around the world now, and historically in our own experience and in the experience of most of the imperialist countries, to show that repression or counter-terror is totally and utterly futile. It does not destroy. It does not destroy these kinds of movements. Last night the greatest single military force in the world was in the most humiliating way kicked out of Vietnam—a wonderful thing to see. They were kicked out not by a great army or by a more powerful army: they were kicked out by groups of tiny dedicated idealistic men with an ideological conviction which was greater than their fear of death, fear of torture or fear of the terror which the Americans tried to visit on them simply because they wanted to run their country in a particular way.

But it is a good example, the most recent example of the essential stupidity, and what is worse, the essential futility of the idea that repression destroys these kinds of movements. It does not do so. The surprising thing is that our Government—above all [745] our Government—should have learned so little from the experience of our nation over the centuries in which we have so many times, so many generations of our people have, listened to this kind of thing—counter-terrorism, repressive legislation. It was no use. One of the greatest empires in the world was put out of Ireland by the guerrilla movement only 50 years ago—the British Empire.

Whether one looks around the world or whether one looks at our own history, it is quite remarkable to see men such as the Minister, such as the members of the Government and above all such as the Labour Party members of the Government, subscribing to this kind of legislation. It is probably true to say that it is the first time in the 50 years of the lifetime of the State in which a Labour Party have had a significant say in the introduction of this kind of repressive legislation. Always the party had avoided or opposed this kind of legislation. As far as I can recollect, at any rate before I was in the Labour Party, when we were fighting as independents, we could always depend on the Labour Party to oppose this kind of offence against the State legislation and this kind of repressive law.

In spite of the simplistic threats made against those of us who oppose this kind of law—that if you oppose this you are in favour of what the Leader of the House called the other night “knee-capping” assassinations, executions and so on—that is not the equation. He knows that. So do the Government. Those of us who oppose it do not favour these things. We recognise they have existed for a very long time. They will continue to exist no matter what kind of repressive law is brought in here until—this is the important thing—this Government or some Government decide to take the political steps, the political action which must be taken here in the South, before any serious dialogue can take place between the North and South, the Protestants and the Catholics, the Unionists and ourselves. We all know that. I do not know how long I have been saying that. Gradually I think it is becoming [746] more and more widely accepted.

The first time this kind of law was introduced was in 1939, the offences against the State, anti-terrorist laws; 1940 brought another extension of it. There was more in 1969. These various extensions of repression are irremovable. The net result is to give our police, as Deputy O'Brien has said, more powers than any other State in Europe or North America, meaning that there has been more and more progressive deprivation of human rights because our successive Governments, Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and now regrettably the Coalition, have refused to face the political difficulties in domestic terms, the in-fighting or politics in the Republic in order to move towards providing the political solution of this problem.

This is totally cynical, this suggestion that this is a concern for the Northern Unionists. I share the view that it is cynical for the obvious reasons put forward by a number of the Opposition speakers—the delay in introducing it, the assumption that it will split the Opposition, the possibility that one could go to the country on a law and order issue—dangerously cynical insistence on continuing to deal with the in-fighting of politics down here and essentially to use the Northern question simply as part of the pawn to be manipulated in the game of Southern politics.

I am quite certain that that is the motivation behind this Bill. We know well the obvious kind of laws which should be introduced here, the laws that would not divide this part of the country, as this law will divide it on the question of the North for the first time. Everyone knows that all my political life, I have fought on these issues—freedom of conscience for the minority down here, the right to divorce, changes in the Constitution, the marriage order, the non-sectarian schools, this appalling division of our people into the two religious groupings which is such an integral part of the whole Northern problem which we are simply afraid to deal with, repeating again and again at such regular intervals the demonstration of our total subservience to the clerical oppression [747] of this part of the State which the Unionist is justifiably frightened of.

How can the Leader of this Government, the Taoiseach, protest that he is seriously concerned for the North after the particularly cowardly decision made by him in relation to the contraception issue introduced by this Minister? At least he, due credit to him, tried to do something about it. I am not saying these things solve the problems in the North but they reduce the differences, and the reduction of differences comes mainly from us because it is we who want to solve and have said we want to solve the Northern problem. This is not just the National Coalition Government at fault now. It is successive Governments since the State was formed. All refused to face these very thorny, complicated problems, what Deputy Lynch once called the nettles that have to be grasped. The new Government have accepted the responsibility of dealing with these problems, and then we have the need to introduce repressive laws as a substitute for courageous political action.

As a democrat and a revolutionary socialist I have a particular vested interest in opposing this kind of legislation because I know quite well that these are the kinds of laws that are passed against people like myself when it suits the Government to decide that we are subversive and we are threatening the State. Those of us, whether we are trade unionists or political activists attempting to displace the established order—my personal ambition—must deplore this kind of law, the setting aside of concern for the rights of the individual before the court, the rights of the individual to jury trial and the rights of the individual to appeals against decisions taken, instead of the appalling arbitrary Special Criminal Court procedures which have so shocked many members of the judiciary of many other countries by the summary nature of the trials in respect of these alleged crimes and the very long sentences meted out by these courts.

As the Minister pointed out two years ago, when he was condemning this kind of legislation, this is the kind of law that was used against the farmers. [748] That was the point made by Deputy Cooney when he was in Opposition. I am particularly interested in the liberals in our society whose liberalism does not survive the first serious pressure on their liberal attitudes, this setting aside of these freedoms. Because the farmers marched in the streets and protested and did not behave themselves, this was the kind of legislation that was used against them. I recall another occasion when the ESB workers went on strike and a number of us went with them on pickets against the law, challenging the law to put us in prison, because the law promised to put us in prison for picketing. That law was defeated and it was a very interesting exercise in protest by Parliament, led by the Labour Party incidentally.

The law was introduced in the morning and taken out in the evening by Mr. Lemass. It was an attempt to set aside the law at a time of social protest or protest against the failure of the Government to deal with the question of employment. It was a failure of the Government to deal with the question of employment. It was a failure to deal with the matter in a political way, but the simplest way is the oppressive way—lock them all up, put them in prison.

I was interested to hear Senator Russell talking about agreement between the two parts of the State on this issue. Is it not an appalling commentary on the type of people in Government both North and South that the one thing we can agree on is to open our jails and fill them with people who protest against organised society? It is its own commentary on the sterile bankruptcy of the people who govern us North and South and who have governed us for the last 50 years.

Another example, against which we all fought very hard, including the present Minister for Labour—I do not know whether the present person in the Minister's chair ever bothered his head about these things but certainly, Deputy Cooney, the Minister for Justice, did fight very hard with marvellous resilience, courage and the expert knowledge of the lawyer I am sure [749] he is—was the Forcible Entry Act. Again the easiest thing to do was to lock these people up. They had nowhere to go, no homes for themselves or their children, pathetic creatures. All around them they saw these absurd office buildings going up, bank buildings, insurance buildings, all these things which it is such a delight to see the present Portuguese socialist government nationalising. Money was being spent on these buildings while our people were without homes, and squatting took place, as you recall. Instead of taking the political action they should have taken at that time, that is build more houses, the easy thing to do was lock them up, put them in jail.

This has been the pattern of our successive Governments. It is very sad, very depressing, very distressing, to think that a young, new nation should so rapidly have sunk back into the total obscurantist conservatism of our successive Governments over the years and end up with the situation where—I see the most recent tables show—we, in Ireland, have the lowest level of social, educational and health services, just below Britain, in all of the EEC countries. This is the 50 years of achievement, 50 years of failure. There is the sectarian legislation, the theocratic society, the total failure of our successive Governments to redistribute the enormous wealth that there is in this country. We see it again in relation to our mineral wealth, the failure of the Government to set aside their primary loyalty to a minority, the wealthy minority whom they represent in our society, their failure to put before everything, for the sake of our own people in the South as well as for the sake of the case it would make, nationally and internationally, the need to make the compelling case to the Northern Unionist Protestants that they have no reason to fear joining up with us and coming into a united Ireland.

We all know quite well that, internationally, nobody would insist on the Northerners coming into a united Ireland at the present time for the obvious reasons I have mentioned. It was for this reason that I felt that Sunningdale could not have worked. [750] I never believed that it would work. The exultation shown by our negotiators at the end of it was completely misplaced. They assumed that everything was all right. There were no serious concessions on their part at all. There were all the various things that had to be done and should be done and none of them were they prepared to do. I remember discussing these things in my own party, the Labour Party, after making a speech once in Tramore in which I referred to the need to have a national debate on these conflicting issues, the issues that divided us North and the South—all the dangerous subjects of contraception and divorce, non-sectarian schools and the rights of the minority in marriage, and so on. All I asked for was the need for a national debate; I was not coming down on any side, although people mostly know what my views are.

There was an interesting debate on that when I was reprimanded for having made that speech, asking for that debate. I can understand the objections of the people who are conscientiously opposed to these subjects or to my views on such subjects, but the most depressing of all were the objections made by two people in particular, who said that they agreed completely with the views held by me on these subjects, that these were the attitudes accepted by most liberal European societies, that they are inevitable subjects for discussion and debate and settlement before there can be any serious approach to Northern unity, but that they were dangerous subjects which should not be discussed in public. The two people who took this view were the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs, Deputy Cruise-O'Brien, and the Minister for Industry and Commerce, Deputy Keating. They agreed with me, but said I must not talk about them in public.

This is the kind of cynical politics, the politics of playing politics, which has this society where it is now, taking up one attitude in public, total moral cowardice—“poltroonery” is the word used—and another in private. If the Minister looks around the world or [751] studies history, he will see that it is the political solution he should be trying to bring into this House, that those are the laws or the amendments to our Constitution which we should be discussing and not this kind of repressive law.

I was interested at the time of Sunningdale particularly in the feeling our negotiators appeared to have that they had the Northern Unionists where they wanted them because of the complacency of the British negotiators at the time who were probably pretty sick of the whole question, but they reckoned without the UWC and the UWC strike. I do not share the views put forward here by many people about the UWC strike. It is a misjudgment of the position and it is the basic and fundamental misjudgment of the position in relation to Northern unity which we continue to make. To me the UWC action was a parallel with the NICRA protest earlier on, the protest of the Catholic minority against repressive laws in the North.

The NICRA protest was justified in every way by events. We all know that life is hell for the Catholic minority in the North of Ireland. It must be an appalling experience, humiliating, degrading, frightening, insufferable, the contemptuous way in which they are treated. This we all understand. Equally, the UWC felt that they were going to take their place as a minority in a greater society with the same kind of sectarian discrimination, in that case imposed by us.

Sunningdale did not work and this was to be part of the Sunningdale agreement. I fail to see how that can be used at all as part of the case for bringing in this Bill. It simply does not make sense and most other speakers have dwelt on it at considerable length and leave me in no doubt at all that, whatever the motivation is, it was not Sunningdale. The UWC was particularly important from the Minister's point of view and he should not underestimate many of these indicators of the change in where power lies in our society, in all European societies and world societies.

[752] Power is changing, parliament is terribly discredited. Very few people take parliament very seriously in any of our countries, France, Germany, West Germany, Britain or Ireland, and less so. The Minister can ignore this kind of development at his peril. Other indicators incidentally are the maintenance workers' strike, and the tankers' the other day. These are all very important indicators as to the declining power of parliament. It is all right for us people to sit here and say what we like, discuss any Bill that we want to, make any proposal that we wish to; let us remember the euphoric elaborate paraphernalia of the whole Sunningdale Agreement, the negotiations, the fear of security guards, and the pronunciamentos every so often from the various negotiators, then the whole thing set aside by the UWC. A number of workers said it simply would not be allowed to work and that was the end of it.

This is a thread running through the whole of western Europe, and to a considerable extent the greater part of the world, the emerging countries, this changing emphasis on the place in which power lies. The UWC was a remarkable achievement in that way in setting aside all the deliberation of these people who got together and thought that they really had power. Similarly I think the Minister is making a great mistake in thinking that simply by passing this law he is going to change anything very significantly, except for the worst quite possibly. One has got to remember that this kind of law has been in operation since 1939, for 35 years. What has it achieved? In every decennial period there is some kind of trouble in the North or in the South or both. It has not ended what the young men chose to call their freedom movement. They are not afraid of going to gaol.

We are moving into very difficult times with the imminent collapse of the British economy, which is bound to affect us here, and quite obviously the Government are going to be faced with great problems of unemployment and inevitably worker protests of one kind or another. We are going to get [753] more of this action by trade unionists, protesting effectively against the noncontrollable spiralling cost of living, the men who stopped the country the other day. They were all people of extraordinary maturity and sense of responsibility, but they felt this was the only action they had. This is the first of many of these kinds of actions. The Minister for Labour, regrettably, shamefully told us on the television that he would not hesitate to take whatever action was necessary, and so on. This again comes back to the repressive laws that are brought in here by the Minister now in support and consolidation of the Offences Against the State laws which he told us himself were used against the farmers when it suited the Government at the time. That is a great danger, and I was completely shocked to hear a trade unionist last night, Senator Harte, making a comparison between a GAA club and the Offences Against the State Act. You have to repress a GAA membership just like you give people eight or ten years in Portlaoise. That kind of comparison was distressing to listen to. Either the man is a fool or he is completely dishonest. He must understand the enormous diffence and the danger implicit in this kind of legislation for court judges. It is quite obvious that the Labour Ministers now totally dominate Fine Gael in the National Coalition. This phrase, meeting terror with a greater terror, is the dominating motif of the National Coalition Government used by Senator FitzGerald last night. The Minister for Industry and Commerce made it quite clear that strike action would not continue to be tolerated, that the strike would be broken. I do not think anyone had any doubt about what he had in mind, and if not this time another time. The Government have failed to take political action in these things. The Fine Gael part of the Government are a very conservative party and never pretended to be anything else. I do not care what Government are in power, Fine Gael, Fianna Fáil or Labour; I am only concerned with the particular ideology, with the political attitudes people have in power. It is quite clear that the conservative social and economic [754] policies of the Government simply cannot solve the great problems facing us and therefore more and more of this kind of repressive law will become inevitable. Therefore I believe that all trade unionists, all members of the Labour Party, should oppose this legislation, not only for its intrinsic, illiberal, anti-democratic implication for the whole country but, in particular, in the context of the very dangerous period ahead of all of us, particularly those who are involved in social protest or in politics.

Senator FitzGerald talked about the IRA programme last night, a question of extraordinary difficulty, one in which it is easy to over-simplify the issues involved. He said that they are protesting against 1916 and the fact that we have established our own Government and therefore intellectually they have a very weak case. That is the sum of his arguments against them. That is the danger of oversimplification. We have a Government here but we have not one in the Six Counties. There is a British Government there. There is a British Army of occupation in the northern part of the country.

Nobody in his senses could agree with the killings and shootings. At the same time, one can understand the sense of frustration experienced by young people educated in our schools by Marists and Christian Brothers and the Jesuits who have learned of the history of our country and been told that as long as there is an army of occupation here, the struggle must go on until the British Army are removed. The only way the British Army were moved from anywhere was when they were put out by force. This was the general thesis which we took from our schools—teachers, brothers, lay-teachers. In that context, it seems unfair to talk about these young men as murderers and criminals. They are the product of our schools, colleges and universities. When these young people achieve various advances in art, literature, education, administration, business, politics, we are very proud of them. We say then that this is the product of our society, it is the kind of society we want to preserve. [755] And yet in a completely callous manner, we reject these other youngsters who are equally the products of that culture and who respond by going north to try to get rid of the British Army by the only way they know.

It is clear to me that politicians have failed. No serious progress has been made by any of the parties, the last débâcle being Sunningdale, and now the appalling prospects of the Convention elections face us. These will not solve anything either. There were various political solutions put forward for these difficult intractable problems but the politicians refused to take the courageous action needed in the different aspects of our social and economic life in order to eliminate the need for anything but political action.

Surely it is possible for one to see something of the case that these young men make for their military action. It is true that amongst them there are —as there are in every army—psychopaths, people who enjoy killing people because of their personality problems, people who are anti-authoritarian. There are also some who are highly idealistic and revolutionary and feel that this is the best way to serve Ireland. We taught them to believe this and we must not forget it.

I am sure the Minister would agree that no single step has been made— apart from that attempted by him on the Contraception Bill—to establish the reality of a pluralist society, the precondition to some kind of reduction in the difference between us. That failed in the most disgraceful fiasco by the action of the Taoiseach. Is it not true that no successful step has been taken by this Government or by their predecessors?

The young Irishman is in a particularly difficult position because of the indoctrination in the schools to secure freedom for Ireland and remove the British Army from Ireland. I feel very deeply about this. In addition, he has had the extraordinary experience of having watched the whole world watch Ireland, and, in particular, the period of the guerilla warfare of the Black [756] and Tan war. He has to watch all around the world young people like himself, in the various societies, in the various countries, with the same problem of achieving freedom from some kind of imperialist domination, adopting the pattern adopted by the young Irishmen of 50 years ago of guerilla warfare in order to achieve freedom. It is now called “The War of the Flea” and was used with enormous success by Mao Tse Tung, that is, the tiny group striking, getting out of the way and eventually wearing down the powerful enemy, as the Americans have been worn down into submission in Cambodia and in Vietnam.

Their mentors in the Philippines, in Malaya, in Greece, in Algeria, in Morocco, in Cuba, in the new liberated Kenya, countries of that kind, know little or nothing about Ireland except that there was this liberation movement here and that this is how they fought. If the young lad is indoctrinated in the first instance by our teachers, watches this happening, and watches freedom evolving throughout the world, it is very difficult to blame him for taking up the pattern laid down for him by his forefathers.

From the Minister's point of view, he should dwell on this question very carefully, because all of those countries I mentioned—some of them enormous and some of them tiny—have one common denominator: the attempt by repressive laws to destroy these various guerilla movements. With a couple of exceptions, there was a total failure of repressive laws, the use of the police, the army, the old reliance on armoured cars, tanks, machine guns and so on. This is not the way. No more than Parliament here, these people have not the power they had. If they watched the total humiliation of the enormously powerful, greatest military power in the world, with its tail between its legs getting out of Vietnam as quickly as it could, hunted by groups of very brave, dedicated men on bicycles, using enormous ingenuity and courage, I hope they learned from that. The Minister should learn from these things. It is very simple to do this kind of business. [757] But he and his colleagues were hunted two or three days ago in just the same way—hunted by 600 or is it 1,200 men? A general strike and a complete shutdown of our society. Does that not frighten the Minister? Does that not demonstrate to the Minister his total impotence against determined people, idealogically convinced people? He can bring in any law he likes, but he will have to drive them or pay up. He paid up and he will do it again.

The Americans, the British, the French, the Belgians and the Dutch all found that repression does not work. An ex-guerilla leader tried political solutions in the Philippines and destroyed the guerilla movement there simply by introducing serious significant land reform proposals.

Most of the European countries are attempting to win in this way, not only here. I regarded the maintenance men's strike as the great watershed in militant trade union action to destroy the power of the Government. The Government will have to face that one day. This will represent the great conflict. The same is happening in West Germany—the same kind of anti-guerilla forces, anti-guerilla activity, anti-terrorist laws, all these emotive and evocative words. But they are not being effective. The technique is completely different. There are no longer these total confrontations which the unarmed and underarmed minority could not possibly win. Fidel Castro, Che Guevara, all of them have shown how futile is this kind of thing—the Minister sending his army out to destroy this handful of ideologically convinced revolutionaries. He does not have to look to Cuba, he does not have to look to Malaya, the Philippines, China, Vietnam or Cambodia. Look at the North, look at the British Army there, look at the RUC, the SAS, the enormous military equipment deployed all over the North. In 1969, when we were up there, I remember some of the British soldiers telling Gerry Fitt or somebody like that that once they moved out from Derry and Belfast they could not possibly control a serious guerilla movement. This has been proved. Make no mistake, the number [758] of troops and the slowing down of the guerilla activity is not important. The essence of the guerilla activity is that it goes on and on. The longer it lasts, the more they like it. It is the cost of keeping an army in the field which the imperialists' power cannot stand.

The Minister will come up against this too: keeping his Army on the Border and keeping his Army hunting people all over Ireland, manning Portlaoise Jail and so on. He is dealing with a very dangerous possible development in our society. He is edging towards the same extraordinary, foolish mistake made by the British in their simplistic, stupid assumption. After their experience of failure in their total loss of their empire, how can they continue to believe in this anti-terrorist legislation, the machine guns and searches? This is exactly what the guerilla movements want to create the sea in which Mao's fish swim. This is what the Minister is going to do. It is he who is going to alienate the Irish people who may be opposed to or neutral about this at present. If he uses the Army to search and arrest, we may catch one, three or even five people but the number of people who are antagonised as a result of this is the secret of the guerilla's success.

In spite of the extraordinary increase in anti-guerilla repressive laws which Ministers brought in in Western Germany, it has not stopped the Bader Meinhoff or the 2nd June factions, or the KPD. This is an extremely leftwing revolutionary Maoist Communist Party, which in the municipal elections during the time Peter Lorenz was arrested, got 10,000 votes in a West Berlin surburb, in spite of all the repressive laws. At the same time, there is a very considerable body of opinion now supporting these people throughout Western Germany. Oddly enough, there is growing support for them among professional people, lawyers, doctors, nurses, people who themselves are becoming alienated from the whole political system.

The main message wherever you look is the failure of repressive laws. If there is political action that can [759] be taken, in Heaven's name let the Minister and the Government have the courage to take it and learn by the mistakes of the British. So far fortunately we have been spared the appalling things that have been happening around the world, such as kidnappings. How do they strike the Minister for Justice, because he is the one who is eventually going to have to deal with it? Does he not feel somewhat apprehensive about the simplistic assumption that a repressive law will solve everything for him? It is not as simple as that. I referred earlier to the abduction of Peter Lorenz in West Berlin before the election, the appalling Olympic blood bath, the various diplomatic places that have been taken over by the PLM—The Palestine Liberation Movement—and the extreme left groups in various countries. We no longer have the ordinary confrontation which can be dealt with by sending out a few policemen to baton them on the head. That is not the way it happens any more.

The most interesting development from my point of view in relation to the Republican movement is the politicisation that has taken place in recent months and years. This movement used to be a right wing sectarian neo-facist organisation. For obvious reasons, it is quite obvious now that it is moving quite systematically across to the left and is developing its own links with the various European left movements. Therefore it becomes much more serious than the Minister appears to realise. However, my experience has been that it has to happen first before anybody takes any notice. For what it is worth I ask the Minister to do some serious thinking about the real problem facing him in the context of the rapidly deteriorating economic situation and the new approach to the solution of our problems by the left in these various countries.

A number of speakers have emphasised the extraordinary decision to give credence in our courts to the very men whom our Attorney General is at present indicting in the European [760] Court in Strasbourg for torture, hooding, beating, harassment of various kinds, the appalling sensory deprivation, use of sensory deprivation, and cruel brutality of various kinds. On the one hand we are accusing these people of these terrible crimes against innocent people or people in captivity, and, on the other, we are opening our courts to their evidence against citizens of the State. How can we reconcile this conflict of attitudes and behaviour?

The other night on a Féach programme a number of you no doubt saw the priest explaining how indifferent the RUC are in relation to the Catholic sectarian killings, or the British Army are, in relation to the Catholics killed at the present time in the North. Austin Currie complained about the police, the RUC, in their failure to deal seriously with the various incidents of harassment, assassination and murder, brutality of different kinds. How can these people be given access to our courts? Why should they be given access to our courts? Merlyn Rees in the House of Commons recently gave figures to show that between January, 1970, and January, 1975, there were 1,345 complaints made against the RUC alleging assault; of these 1,006 were referred to the Attorney General and prosecutions were instituted in 31 and convictions secured in eight— conviction rate 0.17. There were more than 400 cases of alleged brutality to prisoners documented since 1971, and there were no convictions. At the present time the RUC are accused before the European Commission of Human Rights in Strasbourg of 130 cases of torture.

The Northern Community Relations Commission have accused the RUC of open collaboration with the UDA in putting Catholics out of their homes in White Abbey, Mount Pottinger. Recently, on January 31st, the RUC allegedly brutally beat Peter McKenna in Coalisland police station. The National Council for Civil Liberties in England have attacked the British anti-terrorist laws and said that they are simply being used to [761] harass Irish people in Britain. These are laws parallel with the laws which we have introduced in order to satisfy the British.

I have watched politics for a long time now and watched politicians do extraordinary things, but it is a very, very long time since I have seen a group of politicians like the members of the present Government show such total cynicism, total indifference to any sort of politically moral standards or values and such consistent cowardice in the face of their responsibilities as a Government to deal with the very serious problem of the whole question of the North of Ireland. The real danger here is that the civil war, which is now at least limited to the North, could spread down here. This is the kind of provocative legislation which is not justified in any sense no matter which way one looks at it. Whether one looks at it as a trade unionist, member of the republican movement, nationalist, or internationalist, effectively it is the ending of the right of pleading. The political action is before the courts, internationally-accepted convention, and represents the cowardly way for the Government out of their full responsibilities. I hope they do not come to regret it. More important, I hope that our people do not find that they have made a very serious blunder in attempting to bring this Bill through the House.

Mr. Ferris: With all due respect to the previous speaker, who took us on a very wide-ranging journey across the world, to my mind this is an Irish Bill being enacted by an Irish Government for use in Ireland. It is a Bill which is being enacted to extend the criminal law of the State to certain acts done in Northern Ireland. It is being enacted to provide for the admission of evidence, obtained by the examination of witnesses in Northern Ireland, at trials for offences in respect of those acts and to enable evidence to be obtained by the examination of witnesses in the State for trials in Northern Ireland. It is being enacted for corresponding offences under the law of Northern Ireland in respect of acts done in the State, to [762] reform the criminal law in other respects and to provide for related matters. These “certain acts” included in the Bill include murder, manslaughter, robbery, burglary, the holding of explosive substances, the possession of fire-arms, kidnapping, setting fire to churches, hijacking vehicles. In no place have I seen a reference to legitimate strikes by workers, legitimate acts of agitation by farmers or others. In fact, this Bill covers all such acts being committed whether they are committed under the guise of pseudo-republicanism or by bitter sectarian killers, whichever religious belief they purport to represent. If these religious bigots were to practise Christianity first and foremost I think they would most certainly reconsider their position and their obligation to their fellowmen and regard for human life.

This Bill also covers acts committed by all criminals, even those who hide under the cloak of any of the foregoing extremists. From listening to the contributions from all sides of the House it seems to be accepted—and it was categorically stated last night—that the spirit and principle of the Bill is acceptable to everybody. It is also accepted from the tone of the contributions so far that some type of legislation is necessary to solve the problem of the fugitive offender. Apparently, what is not acceptable to the Opposition is the manner in which it is proposed here. For this reason, then, Fianna Fáil have tabled their amendment, and they go on to spell out what appears to them to be a more advantageous approach to the problem. They mention the possibility of an all-Ireland court, which, according to other speakers, is contrary to the Constitution, this Constitution which the Opposition are so careful, during this debate, to quote constantly and to be seen by their quotations to be protecting. Yet, the only alternative, short of outright rejection, is an unconstitutional alternative.

In fairness to the Opposition we must say that Senator Lenihan's type of contribution, in his opening speech, must be welcomed because it is in such marked contrast to the contributions of his party on the introduction [763] of this Bill which everyone has agreed is one of the most important pieces of legislation to come before us. Also, in fairness to Senator Lenihan, I think he has since publicly removed the inflammatory statements which were made as the official objections of his party to the measure. As can be seen from their amendment now, most of their speakers, especially those with legal minds, have dwelt on the constitutionality of this Bill. This type of amendment is an opportunity for people like myself, with absolutely no legal knowledge, to hear the arguments made by various Senators who are experts in their own field. Senator Lenihan's prime concern was section 11 which introduces a procedure by which, in certain circumstances, courts in the State trying extra-territorial offences committed in Northern Ireland, offences under section 2 or offences under section 3 of escaping from custody in Northern Ireland may seek the assistance of the High Court in Northern Ireland to obtain evidence there for use at the trial. He then went on to quote a matter from subsection (2) of section 11 which provides that where a court makes an order for the issue of a letter of request it shall inform the accused of his rights in respect of the taking of evidence. These rights to be conferred by the legislation for Northern Ireland will be the right to be present at the taking of evidence, (a) to be legally represented, (b) to question the witnesses himself if he is not legally represented.

Senator Lenihan also said that the real kernel of the problem for him was the technical handing over to members of the RUC and the fact that while this accused person was in Northern Ireland there would be some risk there for him. He ignored the fact that under subsection (2) while he is there for the taking of this evidence, listening to it on his own behalf, he is immune from any detention or any legal process arising out of any acts before he arrives in the North for this purpose. I wonder if there are any grounds whatsoever for Senator Lenihan's concern for this accused murderer, bomber or church-burner [764] or whatever such offender might be who is covered in this Bill, or for his concern for this technicality of handing over the prisoner to the RUC, because, although there is a technical handing over as, naturally, the Garda Síochána have no jurisdiction in the North, we must remember that this prisoner will still be accompanied by members of the Garda Síochána and he will be accompanied by or on behalf of his legal representatives. Surely, in the light of all this no harm can come to the accused while he is in this situation? He is most unlikely to be subjected to any of the ill-treatments which we are all aware have been possible under the Northern Administration and which this Government have quite rightly taken to the Human Rights Court. I hope they will press for a full and satisfactory conclusion to the type of case we have against the Northern Ireland Bill under which people from any section whether north or south of the Border can be tried and interned and subjected to the horrible atrocities which we are well aware can happen in Northern Ireland.

We must remember, to follow Senator Lenihan's argument, that the accused has the right if he so wishes to opt out of this situation and just be legally represented. I think it is an important section to have included in the Bill in that it retains the important judicial rights of an accused person to face his accuser and, remembering that he is immune from detention while in the North in respect of matters arising before his arrival there, I put it to the Opposition that no other safeguard is possible or is even necessary under legislation of this kind for an accused person on whom we are trying to pin a crime if we have sufficient evidence.

If we are to follow further through this argument and compare the equivalent situation in respect of the reciprocal legislation going through the Westminster Parliament now, in the event of a person, whether he be a murderer, bomber or extremist, if he is caught carrying out a dastardly act in the Twenty-six Counties—and let [765] us not forget they have been carried out here with great loss of life—and if such a criminal fled across the Border and was arrested there, under this sister Bill he could be tried for the offences of which he was guilty when he was arrested. Likewise, if we follow through the argument, he would have the option to come across to the south for the taking of evidence. Of course, he would then technically be handed over by the RUC to the Garda Síochána, for the very same reason that the Garda Síochána in our Bill would hand over to the RUC, because the RUC have no jurisdiction here, thanks be to God. If we considered extending such a right on a mutually-acceptable basis there would be an outcry from everyone, certainly from people on this side of the House, an outcry against the possibility of police jurisdiction crossing the Border.

I think we must be honest and realistic in demanding in our own Bill what is acceptable for the British Bill and vice versa because legislation of this kind will only work on a twinning system where all legislation must be acceptable to both sides. If not, either side may refuse to put their Bills into operation.

At the end of Senator Lenihan's contribution he made an impassioned plea with a very loud emphasis on the word “why”. He shouted it out: “Why is this Bill needed to be introduced at this time?” His reference to the IRA ceasefire, which of course is welcomed by everybody leads me to believe that he is still of the opinion that this Bill is just an anti-IRA Bill. Of course, nothing could be further from the truth. It is against all types of offenders, and every day we pick up our newspapers and listen to the radio or look at the television we see the answer to Senator Lenihan's question of “why?”.

We see innocent people who for no other reason but that they were born Catholics or Protestants are being murdered, shot at, their homes and their families are being blown to pieces. This Bill would ensure that whenever or wherever the people responsible for these outrages are arrested they can be tried and not [766] just released by the courts as happens now when they claim that these offences are political ones. I fail to share the concern of Fianna Fáil in regard to the aspects of this Bill which, if followed through to their logical conclusion, give absolutely no basis whatsoever for the fear that the accused person is not getting justice comparable to the justice meted out to fellow Irishmen.

I wish I could be as optimistic as Senator Lenihan after his recent visit to the North in connection with the outcome of the elections there this week. I sincerely hope that I am wrong in my assumption. I certainly look forward to a power-sharing majority, a majority of people who accept the principle of power-sharing and if that does not come across through this election—and Senator Browne has mentioned the futility of such elections at this time—the British Government have laid it on the line that they will accept nothing short of a system whereby power-sharing will be acceptable to them.

As a layman with no knowledge or experience of law I was impressed by the contributions of Senators Eoin Ryan and Mary Robinson. They gave excellent, well-prepared, legal arguments against certain sections of the Bill, especially in regard to Article 38 of the Constitution and the Special Criminal Court. These were well-documented arguments presented with expertise, and it was an education for us to listen to them. I also listened with interest to the Leader of the House, Senator M.J. O'Higgins, when he replied to specific points which they had raised.

I am satisfied—I must abide by some of the best legal advice in the country available to the Government on this—that we are assured that this Bill is constitutional. Otherwise, of course, as has been said, it would not, should not, possibly could not, be introduced here. If this Bill is referred to the Supreme Court—and the Minister in his opening speech did not rule out the possibility of this; in fact, he welcomed the possibility of its arrival in the Supreme Court prior to its enactment—no doubt all these legal [767] arguments will be repeated, possibly by some of the Senators who have already spoken. They may be appointed to fight the case of the unconstitutionality of the Bill. I should prefer, as a layman, that that aspect of the Bill, having been debated here, should be left to the courts. This is sufficient safeguard for me on the question of the compliance of this Bill with the Constitution.

An obvious bonus in this legislation is that when the sister Bill is introduced by Westminster in Northern Ireland it will effectively eliminate the need in the North for internment without trial. I would ask, then, that the Minister would use his influence and his good offices to point out this to the British, although I know that the question of internment is a political one and not a legal one. I am pleased that the Minister has accepted that escape from internment is not escape from legal custody and, therefore, such an escaper would not be rearrested here under this Bill. I am sure all of us in this House detest repressive legislation such as internment without trial. We should avail of every opportunity to tell the British how we feel about it. The introduction of this Bill and the joint Bill from Westminster is a golden opportunity for us to reiterate our feelings on internment without trial.

Mention has been made of the Labour Party's continued stance against repressive legislation. Some of the contributions were in the heat of debate. Senator Noel Browne also contributed. Unfortunately, he is not here at the moment and it is not very pleasant to speak about a Senator when he is not present. However, for a man who advised the Labour Party a few years ago that we should not condemn too much internment in the North in case the Coalition, which he was then advocating, should be in Government and find it necessary to introduce internment, it is a very interesting shift of ground on his part. I, as a member of the Labour Party— and I was a member of the Labour Party long before Senator Browne was, and I still am—have always been [768] proud of my membership and of the fact that we have taken a stand against repressive legislation. Let it be put on record that, when legislation was required to suppress repressive acts of murder, violence and bombings, the Labour Party had the courage and the integrity to assist the passage of measures to protect the rights of all Irish people whether they are North or South of the Border—the rights of the citizens whose only desire is peace and reconciliation and the right to live and work in their own country without any threats or intimidation. We look forward to the day —not, I hope, too distant—when this happy situation comes about and the need for a Bill such as the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill will disappear and the whole of this island will be reunited.

Mr. Killilea: At this time it is appropriate that I put on record in this House that the Fianna Fáil Party in their entirety are opposed to this Bill. It is true that this strongest single unit of Irish political life cannot and must not be thrown aside as incorrect in its view. We have had many years in Government. We have acted responsibly at all times. It cannot be said now, nor can innuendoes be made, that we are not acting responsibly on this issue. This party have no stomach for death or for murder or for cowardice or any other form of degradation of this State. That is true and it must be reiterated also.

But that is not what one would grasp from statements and innuendos made by Senator FitzGerald yesterday and by Senator O'Higgins in his opening remarks which I read this morning, and indeed in public statements made by Ministers of the National Coalition Government. They try to insinuate by deceit, to give the impression that Fianna Fáil were pro-IRA or pro-any illegal organisation. We all know that is not true. It is not fair or truthful of the Government side to try to taint us in this way.

When the Bill was introduced in the Seanad I quoted the long title to the Bill, and it still stands uncorrected:

[769] An Act to extend the Criminal Law of the State to certain acts done in Northern Ireland, to provide for the admission of evidence obtained by the examination of witnesses in Northern Ireland at trials for offences in respect of those acts, to enable evidence to be obtained by the examination of witnesses in the State for trials in Northern Ireland for corresponding offences under the law of Northern Ireland and in respect of acts done in the State, to reform the Criminal Law in other respects and to provide for related matters.

I emphasise again for “offences under the law of Northern Ireland in respect of acts done in the State”. I questioned then who was responsible for the law in Northern Ireland, the so-called law that was enforced by Stormont and the British which has caused so much trouble in this land. We as a nation would be classed as lackeys for trying to enforce this law that is so incorrect in its very foundation. We saw a Stormont regime apply nothing less than the most unfair system that has, with the exception of South Africa, been applied throughout the world. It would be incorrect for us to let that point pass.

With respect for the profession of the Minister, there is an old West of Ireland description from poorer times when the local gentry or the local astute man was described as a “hob lawyer”. Listening to the contributions of the Government side, who say one thing to suit and another thing to suit, so that they will not be caught in the cross-fire, one can say that a number of hob lawyers have made contributions here that are totally incorrect and inconsistent.

I questioned the time the Bill was brought before us and the peculiar way in which it arrived in the House. What I do not like about its timing is that in Northern Ireland in the last four or five weeks there seems to have been compromise and there appears to be peace on the horizon. I emphasise the word “appears”. It appears that a cease-fire may continue to operate. God willing, it will and that may be a new way out. It appears [770] that the British Army have decided to limit themselves to barracks, as it were, without openly saying it. Last week there was an instance which the nation described as British stupidity when what the British Army classed as new recruits to Northern Ireland crossed into a town in the South without knowing where they were. I do not know if that propaganda is correct, but from the situation that is visible in Northern Ireland one could say that at least this one trip and this explanation may be correct.

Why then interrupt the situation that seems to be evolving? Civil disobedience in Northern Ireland may have taken a turn for the better. Sunningdale is over and done with. It is evident that the Bill is a thread from Sunningdale. Senator Noel Browne described the UWC's efforts on Sunningdale and how quickly they brought Sunningdale to threads. The Bill is, as was promised by the Taoiseach in his text on Northern Ireland after the the Sunningdale Agreement, a part of the deal made in Sunningdale. The Government have timed it incorrectly. This is where we as an Opposition and indeed all the people of the country seem to have a major national unanswered question as to the reason for the Bill and why it is brought in at this time.

The Bill, it appears to me, seeks to divide. If it is enacted in the Seanad and Dáil it will divide religious beliefs in the North and political beliefs in the South. It is therefore putting us back more than 50 years. It divides the majority from the minority both North and South and that is a bad thing. We as a party presume that it is to be attributed to Sunningdale. Due to the lack of reason given to us by the Government, we must assume that what we say is correct. If it is, we must say it is totally wrong. It is too late. Sunningdale is defunct. This effort by the Government is nothing more than an indication of a lazy and inefficient outlook and obviously not acceptable. This is an indication that the Government are unable to pull their heels out of the mess. They should restart to make a positive move towards peace [771] and unity. The Bill cannot be classed as an effort by the Government to bring any fresh thought or ideas to the idea of a peaceful solution.

The Government are trying to pull off a lazy bluff. They have never shown their dogged face so glaringly as on this issue. The whole world can see that they are a Government unable to put forward any progressive new measures towards the solution of our national problem. They lack the poise, the realism, the knowledge and the understanding necessary to find a solution. The country is well aware now of the capabilities of the Government and will judge them on it.

This has been a debate of peculiar pronouncements. Senator Alexis FitzGerald gave a very fine Fine Gael educational seminar-type performance. He described a situation when so-called convicts escaping from the British Army came down here and spat on us. He must have forgotten that British soldiers have spat on the minority community in the Six Counties for many years. Prior to that, Stormont was a founder member of that principle towards the minority, causing all those problems involving the minority and the entire island.

On the question of extradition, it is well known that the British Government never wanted extradition. Is it not true that for political crimes in Britain one would not be sent home?

Fianna Fáil believe that an all-Ireland court is the ideal solution, with a change in the Constitution. If the people saw this as a lasting way to solve the terrible national problem of ours I am sure if we held a referendum they would vote in favour of it.

At the Council of Europe in Strasbourg last week I listened to deliberations on the problem of Cyprus. The representatives there were against Partition with the exception of one or two. Those exceptions were nations which, if a border were created in Cyprus, would benefit by it. If we, an established democratic State recognised in Europe, could have a proper view given to our problem to act as a legal guide in our problem with [772] Britain regarding Northern Ireland, any representatives of any democratic State that would take it upon themselves, if they had to swim here, paddle here or come by canoe or submarine, the first recognisable fact glaring them in the face would be that Ireland is an island surrounded by water, and on that basis they would have to come to a conclusion.

When I as a young man had to emigrate I worked in Liverpool and Birmingham and I realised that the English people thought that Glasgow was the next city north of Edinburgh. At that time they knew little about our problems. Does the same not still apply? It is only in the past eight or nine years that they have come to know the problem of Northern Ireland. It is only now they have realised that it is part of this nation, that on one side is surrounded by the Atlantic and on the other by the Irish Sea. It is only now that the light of Europe has begun to shine upon us.

It is disgraceful that a Bill like this is all that the Government are capable of offering as a contribution to the solution of our problem. Shame on them for it. They should not be tied to such limited means to try to achieve a national aim. It is because of this that this Bill has not been well received either by a certain section of the Labour Party or by a certain section of the Fine Gael Party. This Bill is a lazy way out for this Government of so-called geniuses and as days go on they will be seen for what they are and for their contribution to this great national problem.

I have been getting away from the point of extradition. I was making the point that this was not accepted by the British Government. We know that the British always accepted what their Government said. We can see now that the British people for the first time in the history of Great Britain, are being asked by means of a referendum about EEC membership. Is it not true to say that it is the first time the people of England have been consulted in this way regarding a decision? One must assume, then, that they accepted what their Government always applied.

[773] I do not see any reason why we, as a Republic, must try to apply the rules of law and order for the British Government in Northern Ireland with all its different wings, the SAS and others; that we, as a Government, must now try to compromise and help them out. If a person breaks the law in Northern Ireland how he can come through Belfast and the British Army to become a so-called fugitive on this side of the net is beyond my imagination. People ask how on earth can a man who commits a felony in Belfast arrive the following day in Dundalk, Kilkenny or Dublin. How can he get through this British Empire that has been known throughout the world? How he can make his way unapprehended to Dundalk is above me. In this particular instance we are trying to do the job of this great British Empire —the empire part of it should have inverted commas.

I should like to have it on the record of the House that I am totally against this Bill as a representative of ordinary people. I know from talking to them on the streets and in other places that it is a big issue of conversation now—the rights and wrongs of the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill. I should like to reiterate to the Minister that those are the views of the people around me and, indeed, the views of all the people of the Fianna Fáil organisation. It is an undeniable fact that that is the strongest political organisation in this country.

Mr. Markey: The criterion through which this and any other legislation must be judged is that we must ask ourselves a series of questions: the need for it; if there is a need, what means should be used to meet that need; its constitutional position; and whether it is workable and operable.

In regard to the first question, the need for such legislation, we have to recognise what we are experiencing today and we have to look at it, bearing in mind the volume to which the violence has ascended in the past three years. Ireland is now experiencing a level and a texture of violence which was unthinkable three years ago. Most Irishmen three years ago would regard it as not only abhorrent [774] but unthinkable that the types of violence they have seen perpetrated in our 32 counties could be done by Irishman against Irishman. It is a regrettable fact that this violence has ascended to the extent it has since Sunningdale: 1974 and 1975 have seen the number of violent deeds rise to an alarming height.

In the context of that picture we have to ask ourselves whether we want to see this type of violence checked or not. We should also ask ourselves whether we regard what is happening in the Six Counties as our concern. On the latter question, we are inclined to adopt a double standard. If we are to be serious in our contention that what happens within the 32 counties is our responsibility and concern, we should at least try to rid our minds of double standards.

We have heard a lot about the Irish dimension. Indeed in regard to anything that has come from Northern Ireland in the past six years as regards progress, minimum as it may have been, we have always been inclined to ask if the Irish dimension is recognised. It is my contention that the Irish dimension embraces the question of violence within the whole island. If we are to talk at all about an Irish dimension we must talk about our attitude towards violence within the 32 counties and what we propose to do about it.

We are inclined to forget the realities of the consequences of this violence. The human consequences are, of course, enumerated every day. It is now close on 1,300 dead, north and south. The economic consequences to Northern Ireland have not to be paid for out of this country's pocket. Let us look at figures in regard to the economic consequences to the Republic. I would take one figure, that pertaining to security and compensation arising from violence directly attributable to the Northern Ireland violence. There has been an increase to the Republic of £40 million extra in the past five years. Included in that is a figure for 1974 of £1 million for damages which could be directly attributed to the violence arising from the Northern Ireland troubles. A sum of [775] £40 million can do a lot of things. It can build maybe 5,000, 6,000 or 7,000 houses. It can create industrial employment for many thousands of our population. It can improve our hospital services. It can do something for our schooling system. It can build schools.

Business suspended at 1 p.m. and resumed at 2.30 p.m.

Mr. Markey: In dealing with this legislation as with any legislation we must ask ourselves certain questions: Is there a need for such legislation? If so, is it workable and is it constitutional? I was giving an example of what the violence that this country has seen, to an increasing extent over the past three to four years, has meant not only in human terms but also in economic terms particularly to the Republic. I put the question whether the perpetrators of this violence can convince one and all that what they have been doing is worth the cost in human terms and in economic terms, whether they can persuade us that what has been happening is better than the provision of houses for people and the provision of jobs for people, all of which could have been provided out of the moneys which it has cost this State in terms of security.

In asking the question if there is a need for such legislation, it is encouraging to find that the Leader of the Opposition two weeks ago recognised that a need did exist to combat violence. One has always to be guided by the overriding principle whether we regard what happens throughout the length and breadth of this land as a whole as being our concern or not. The Minister in his speech has set out admirably and attempted to publicise the double standard to which I referred earlier in my address in regard to this problem in Northern Ireland. He says that to treat Northern Ireland as part of a foreign State for present purposes seems to be not only artificial but inconsistent with the history of co-operation between the two parts of Ireland which has been practised over the years in so many respects. It is inconsistent, too, [776] with our tradition of regarding Ireland, in spite of the Border, as one country and one people. We are all Irishmen no matter of what hue. As long as we abide by what the Minister has said in his speech if violence confronts any Irishman we must regard it as our responsibility to meet that violence.

If the need, therefore, does exist for legislation of some kind to combat and overcome violence, we come to the second question: what means should be established to fulfil that need? We are entering into a difficult field here because we must remember, firstly, that we are not dealing only with the Republic, over which we have jurisdiction. Whether we like it or not, there is another Government involved and whatever we propose to do must be realistic and must have some chance of success. To be successful at all it must always be acceptable to responsible people both north and south. The proposition has been put that the all-Ireland court would be the solution. Nobody would deny for a moment that an all-Ireland court would be an ideal solution, but perhaps it is Utopian in the present circumstances. We saw Sunningdale fall because extremists in the North would not wear it. I believe that an all-Ireland court would not be worn at all by an even broader spectrum of people in Northern Ireland. If an all-Ireland court is not practicable because it would not be acceptable to one of the parties—and there are two parties to this whole question of dealing with violence—then we have to look for some alternative means for combating violence.

The measures proposed by the Minister have been spelt out amply in his speech. He has gone into them in quite detail. I am certain that if there are a few aspects which need clarification these will be clarified in his winding-up speech. Having assumed that some means is necessary, that an all-Ireland court would not be practicable because it would not be acceptable to the other party, we must look at the means that the Minister has presented to us. The accusations which have been levelled at those means have ranged [777] over it being regarded as divisive, as being a threat to bipartisanship, as being unconstitutional and as being inoperable. Taking the latter first, from all that I have heard and read in this debate today no specific or concrete thoughts as to why it is unconstitutional have been put forward. There have been hints, indeed, speculation, that it is contrary to our Constitution. There have been hints and guesses also that it would not be workable. It was mentioned last week that if witnesses were to come down from Northern Ireland to give evidence here it might provoke a situation bordering on riots and chaos here in Dublin. That again is pure speculation. Whether anything is workable or not always depends in the last resort on the will behind the effort. Perhaps Sunningdale fell because of the lack of will on the part of certain people in Northern Ireland to see it through. We must remember, in considering whether this Bill is workable or not, that it depends for its enforcement in our State on that enforcement being reciprocated in Northern Ireland. It is a two-way venture, in other words. If one party does not play its part, then the whole thing will fall.

As regards whether it is constitutional or not, I have no doubt that for every person on the other side of this House who says it is not constitutional we will have one on this side who will say it is. The only way to bring that sort of argument to a conclusion, if it is still felt that it should be brought to the proper conclusion when the stage is reached, is to put it to the test in the Supreme Court. There is no harm in people speculating or hinting that it is either constitutional or not. I do not think that is what we should basically find ourselves debating. In due course that will be decided upon by higher authority.

As regards the accusation that it is divisive and a threat to bipartisanship, it has been contended that since Sunningdale has fallen this proposed legislation is superfluous. As it was only part of the Sunningdale package, it should now fall by the wayside with Sunningdale. I cannot see the logic in [778] this argument. If anything is worth following, I think it is worth picking up at any time if at that particular time it is felt that there is a case for it to be used.

It was also said that nobody in Ireland wanted this Bill, and that it was inopportune on the eve of the convention. We are now on the eve of the convention in Northern Ireland and I have not seen any great hue and cry in Northern Ireland about its being processed through this House. As for nobody in Ireland wanting it, I hope I have answered that already by pointing out the consequences of violence on the human body and on people's jobs and on security and peace. If we have any pretensions at all to regarding what happens in the 32 Counties of this island as being our affair, I would think it somewhat hypocritical to say we should only think in terms of a 32-county island in certain instances and not in others.

I have no doubt that bipartisanship will continue because on close reading of the amendment put forward by the Opposition, we find that it contains aspects which they themselves accused this Bill of having. Is what they are proposing all that constitutional and, more important, all that workable? I have said an all-Ireland court is not workable because it is not acceptable in the North. The constitutionality of what they propose in an all-Ireland court has as much a question mark opposite it as has what the Minister is proposing in his Bill.

In the absence of a positive, concrete alternative, I have no doubt that, in the overall, wider responsibility that confronts every political party and indeed every citizen of this State, bipartisanship will be continued and will be seen to be continued. There has been a certain mellowing on the part of the Opposition since this Bill was first discussed some weeks ago. I hope that mellowing has come because they had second thoughts as regards both the content and what the Bill proposes to do. I am inclined to think it has resulted from a certain feedback which has come their way, that what they attempted to do will not be tolerated by the public.

[779] This morning, Senator Noel Browne described the legislation as repressive. I would ask him: on whom is it repressive? I would always conclude that for something to be repressive an innocent person more than anybody else would be at the receiving end of it. To compare it with a situation of some years ago when the then Government confronted ESB workers and farmers with actual or threatened legislative measures is, in my opinion, stretching his argument too far beyond credibility.

When we talk about murder, we are talking about nothing else but the actual taking of life by Irishmen against Irishmen, no matter what creed. There is always a need to meet that situation with tough legislation. If this legislation can be regarded as being tough in the eyes of the ordinary people who want to stay alive and the people here who want to hold on to their jobs, I would regard those people as fully accepting and being fully behind tough legislation.

Senator Noel Browne also referred to it as being dangerous legislation. I was surprised to hear Senator Killilea referring to a comparative “stage of peace”, I think were the words he used, at present when all the evidence is to the contrary in the number of assassinations that have happened over the past few months, never mind the past two years. I would regard it as being a far more dangerous possibility that the violence, if allowed to continue, would mean even greater violence for all parts of this country. It must be acted upon by all of us.

There are, of course, a number of sections in the Bill which are open to further clarification in meeting the circumstances we have to meet with legislation of this kind. There are all the steps which people must take which they would not like in normal circumstances to have to take. In section 8, the Firearms Act is being amended so that persons who have in their possession firearms and who give rise to a reasonable inference [780] that they have not these arms for lawful purposes can be charged. This is a section which in normal times would give rise to certain doubts and alarm. The words “reasonable inference” is a broad enough term and it can be open to misinterpretation, but I certainly hope it will not be.

Section 19 gives powers of arrest without warrant. This again in normal times and circumstances would be quite a difficult section to condone, and I hope it has to be used to the minimum extent. I would ask the Minister to set our minds at case on these points in his winding-up address. While in difficult times one always has to expect a certain restriction of individual liberty, I think if the public are assured there will be no undue restriction they will accept the provisions of this Bill all the more.

This debate on the first day the Bill reached this House certainly indicated that it would go from bad to worse. However, listening to the Opposition speakers today, I feel they are beginning to realise that the public want violence to be faced up to. If we regard the whole country, north and south, as being our responsibility, as we so regard it in the 1937 Constitution, then we must do something more than give it lip service in future.

Some of the epithets thrown our way today were vastly less offensive to me than on the first day. I do not mind a Government being called lazy or lacking poise or courage when I know that they have shown themselves to be the very opposite. They have acted courageously in bringing forward this Bill knowing it was going to create a hornets' nest. They have not been lazy to any extent. They would not have bothered otherwise. When all the hue and cry is over and the dust has settled this Bill will do one thing more than anything else: it will make everybody in this State really live up to the principles that are set out in our Constitution and act in a positive way in accordance with those principles. What happens in all of this country is our concern as much as the concern of the people in Northern Ireland.

[781] Mr. McGlinchey: The question has been asked many times during the last few weeks why this Bill has been introduced at this time, at a time when we have 103,000 people unemployed, at a time when the cost of living has risen from 11 per cent in 1973 to 17 per cent in 1974, and the prospect of it reaching 25 per cent in 1975. One would imagine that this Government would have something more to do with their time than to spend months deliberating on this measure, at a time when the Central Bank in their recent report wrote, and I quote briefly:

Although much of Ireland's price inflation is due directly to external causes, a not inconsiderable part is initiated domestically. These domestic influences, the rising trends in money incomes, public expenditure and borrowing, are becoming stronger. There is growing recognition of the dangers of the situation and particularly the risk of even higher unemployment at a time of little growth and heavy external deficits. There has, as yet, been no concerted programme of action to come to grips with the domestic pressures which contribute to Ireland's relatively high inflation. The need for such a programme is made more urgent by the turning of the inflationary tide which can now be discerned in stronger economies.

The Government should be involving themselves in what the Central Bank suggest—a concerted programme of action to come to grips with the domestic pressures. It is quite obvious that this Government have neither the will nor the way to solve the economic problems we are suffering from today.

An Cathaoirleach: The Chair would be pleased if the Senator would come to the end of his preface and address himself to the Bill.

Mr. McGlinchey: So, in order to divert the attention of the people from the real issues in the country at present, the domestic issues, this Government have chosen to introduce a measure which would be highly emotional, which would cause serious controversy, in the hope that the [782] people of Ireland would forget this Government's inability to tackle the economic problems. This Bill is one element in the age-old Anglo-Irish struggle, problems, arguments, call it what you like. It represents another compromise in the long litany of compromises which the British have persuaded the Irish to accept as vague mechanisms designed to advance the achievement of the Irish national aspiration. In this context is the word “compromise” not synonymous with the word “betrayal”? We have heard Messrs. Craig and Paisley trumpeting the holy word “democracy” and invoking the sanctity of the democratic principle for some years. Do they and the British creators of Partition not realise that the very existence of the Six Counties as a separate political unit is, in itself, a negation of democracy, of the democratic principle?

The 1918 election was the only occasion in which the people of Ireland, as a whole, had the opportunity to vote on the issue of the future relations between Ireland and Britain. It was the largest poll in the history of elections in this country. The vote for total separation from Britain was 76 per cent. The vote for the maintenance of the then status quo was 17 per cent, the remainder going to Home Rule and independence. Yet Partition was thrust upon us a compromise, a mechanism designed to prevent the illusory civil war. We all know how Partition has bedevilled Irish relations and Anglo-Irish relations ever since. Now it is proposed to divide the Irish people once more with this most divisive measure.

I am intrigued by the reaction to some to my remarks in the House on the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill. I used the words “British collaborator” to describe those who support the Bill. This seems to have offended the susceptibility of those who believe we should always turn the other cheek, as far as the Six Counties are concerned. I am unrepentant in my use of the word “collaborator”. I am surprised that any clarification is called for. However, it may be timely to refer to the judicial administration with which we are being asked to collaborate.

The Bill proposes to make it a [783] criminal offence, punishable by up to seven years' imprisonment, to escape from custody in the Six Counties while under charge or sentence. In other words, it gives blanket approval to the system which detains a person in these circumstances. This is the system which continues to operate the most blatant form of discriminatory justice against an identifiable portion of our community.

Arising from the speeches of myself and others, the charge of ambivalence has been levelled against Fianna Fáil. Yet those who make that allegation belong to an administration which has continued at Strasbourg and elsewhere with the charges initiated by the Fianna Fáil Government of torture and gross injustice by the British authorities in the Six Counties. On the other hand, the Coalition Government now ask us to write into our statute books the monstrous assumption that this system is worthy of our respect and of our judicial support. Ambivalence, how are you. This is a system which was described as follows:

The event which opened in England such a splendid chapter of achievement and growing liberty had imposed in Ireland a system of oppression and calculated degradation such as Europe has seldom seen.

That is the author's opinion of the type of British justice with which we are now being asked to co-operate.

Mr. M.J. O'Higgins: Who is the author?

Mr. McGlinchey: The book is To Katanga and Back and the author is Deputy Conor Cruise-O'Brien. Lest anyone thinks for a moment that the British, who are the sole arbiters of law enforcement in the Six Counties, have mended their ways I refer to just a few happenings in recent weeks and indeed in recent years. First, the acquittal by a senior member of the Six-County Judiciary of a British soldier who murdered an innocent young Catholic County Tyrone man in cold blood. To add insult to terrible [784] injury, the learned judge, having acknowledged the innocence of the dead man, commented that the soldier had behaved in a perfectly reasonable manner—shades of “Bloody Sunday”. This Government are asking us in this legislation to co-operate with this judge.

It could well be that that soldier who murdered Patrick McElhone could help send innocent people in the Six Counties or from the Republic, to jail. That same soldier could be the principal witness in Dublin under the protection of the Garda, the Army and the Special Branch, and his word could play a major part in sending a Kerryman, a Limerick man, a Galway man or a Tyrone man to Mountjoy Jail for seven years.

People are surprised that I should suggest that those who support this measure, those who help that soldier to give this evidence are doing nothing else but collaborating with the British. Second, we have the cat-out-of-the-bag comments of the British Army Commander, General Sir Frank King, who did not know the press were present, but who reminded us that one-sided justice prevails in the Six Counties. The good General has since been removed but no doubt his successor will be told to carry on the good work but to keep his mouth shut.

Third, in a ceasefire situation, the entire complement of internees in Long Kesh continues to be drawn from one section of the community while the Loyalist section boast openly, not later than on today's 1.30 news, of scores of sectarian killings and bombings. Fourth, the extraordinary revelation by Mr. Rees that he released from custody a Loyalist who attempted to assassinate him. In any other circumstances, this would be regarded as an act of heroic Christian charity, but coming from a man who continues to imprison hundreds against whom no charge has been levied, it is nothing short of cynical subservience to the Loyalist Coalition. Fifth, Séamus Grew from Maghera, County Armagh, who worked on a building site in Letterkenny, County Donegal. He was a hard-working young man with a wife and young [785] children and was not involved with any section of the IRA. He worked hard week in and week out and his only interest was to earn sufficient money to make life more comfortable for his family. Two weeks ago he left the building site and went home to spend the weekend with his wife and family. The following morning he went out to meet a few of his pals. Two RUC men were walking down the street. As young Grew passed, one of the RUC men said: “Is it you, you bastard?” He pulled out a revolver and poured four bullets into young Grew. Since then his life has been just hanging by a thread. Nobody is sure he will survive.

That is the type of police establishment with which the Minister for Justice and the Coalition Government are asking us to co-operate. If this young man gets better and if, through fear of that RUC man returning to his home, he decides to have a gun in his house to defend himself and he is caught and charged, but escapes to Kerry or Wexford or Waterford or to Donegal, under the terms of this Bill the Garda Síochána would be given the unpleasant task of arresting and charging him with escaping. It could happen that the RUC officer who attempted to murder him would be the person who would report to his superiors, ring the Garda Síochána in the Republic and ask the Coalition Government to arrest him. Under the terms of this Bill the Coalition Government would arrest him. Mr. Grew would be told that he was not supposed to defend himself. If an RUC man wants to shoot a person he is entitled to do so, but because of the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill we cannot allow anyone to escape from custody, irrespective of the prevailing circumstances. That is the type of legislation we are now debating.

The situation could be different. Mr. Grew could have jumped on that RUC man when he saw him produce his revolver and, possibly, have taken the gun from him. He could have jumped into a car and crossed the Border to any county in the Republic. But that RUC man could ring the [786] Garda and say: “You have a man living in Letterkenny—or any town in the Republic—and he caused me grievous bodily harm. Get him arrested.” The Coalition Government would accept the word of that RUC man and arrest Mr. Grew. The only hope for the Grews of the future is to allow the RUC and the British Army to murder them, because they will get no sympathy if they cross to this side of the Border.

Mr. Poland is one of the Catholic heads of the Special Branch, a Castle Catholic if ever there was one. Not long ago a young man was brought before Mr. Poland for questioning. He was brought into a room and Mr. Poland waved in front of him a replica of Blessed Martin. He continued to ask the young man what he was waving in front of him. After a considerable amount of torture, the young man said it was Blessed Martin. He struck him on the forehead with the statue and challenged him to find out for himself what Blessed Martin could do for him now. The purpose of this operation was to persuade this young man to give false evidence against some of his neighbours. I have no doubt that in time to come, this Government, the Minister for Justice and his Department, will co-operate to the full with policemen of the calibre of Mr. Poland.

Alphonsus Francis McKeown—and for this we have the benefit of the pamphlet just issued by Fr. Denis Faul —was assassinated on 21st December, 1972. Fr. Faul tells us that two features were noticeable in this assassination: a Stirling sub-machine gun was used and a number of these had been stolen in the area, without a shot being fired in their defence. It was believed that there must have been collusion between members of the reserve security forces and their extremist cousins who, allegedly, stole the Stirling sub-machine gun that was responsible for the murder of Alphonsus Francis McKeown.

We are being asked here today to collaborate with these reserve forces. If a member of such reserve forces asserts that an innocent person has explosives in his possession—bullets and a gun—and if that person crosses [787] the Border, the Coalition Government will accept the word of that member of the reserve force and arrest what could be an innocent person. We are being asked to collaborate with a force where there is clear evidence that the members of that force have practically handed over Stirling sub-machine guns to be used for the murder of Catholics in the Six Counties. Every person who votes for this legislation is cooperating with the militant Loyalist organisations in the Six Counties, with the militant gentlemen who are wearing the uniforms of the RUC, the UDR or the British Queen.

When Alphonsus Francis McKeown was shot dead there was no evidence, according to Fr. Faul, of any prolonged or urgently pursued police or Army investigation, no comb-out, no road blocks, no suspects taken in and no one removed for interrogation. How could they? That is not what they are there for. It was a young Catholic who was murdered. We cannot expect the Government of West-minister or her forces to go to any pains to round up the murderers of such people.

Francis McCaughey, 33 years of age, died on 8th November, 1973, as a result of injuries received when he opened the door of his cowshed on 28th October and a booby-trap explosion went off. Again the inactivity of the RUC and the security forces was a talking point among the neighbours. It was said that only people who had control of the roads could have approached the house and laid the trap. In an area where there are road-blocks every few miles, people could drive up to McCaughey's house and plant a booby-trap in his cowshed. The RUC demonstrated their inactivity in no uncertain terms. The British Army demonstrated their inactivity in no uncertain terms. Yet, we are being asked today to support legislation for the Irish Army and the Garda to demonstrate their activity in helping the RUC and the British Army.

Patrick Molloy, aged 37, was killed in an explosion at Traynor's pub on [788] the Moy-Armagh road in February last year. It was believed that this bomb was taken by the backroad from Tullyroan and left without warning. Again no arrests were made, no interest displayed by the British Army or the RUC.

On 5th August, 1973, Francis and Bernadette Mullan were assassinated. Fr. Faul tells us that this sort of assassination and the failure to arrest or intern a single suspect made the Catholic people realise that the RUC and the British Army have no interest in stopping sectarian assassinations which were serving a useful political purpose. The chances of the people responsible for these assassinations being affected in any way by this Bill are minimal because they do not need to cross the Border for protection. They have all the protection they desire from the RUC and the British Army. The chance of one of them being charged under any section of this Bill is practically non-existent. The only people who will be charged are those accused of attack on the British Army or on the RUC, those people who belong to the minority in the Six Counties.

Daniel Hughes, a 73-year-old man, was assassinated in January, 1974, at the door of Boyle's pub in Cappagh by machine-gun fire. No arrests followed although there was a great deal of harassment and arrests of Catholics in nearby Pomeroy. But Loyalists in their areas had immunity from such treatment. Following the death of Daniel Hughes, Catholics were harassed. Let us face it, this legislation also gives immunity to Loyalists—make no mistake about it—because those Loyalists who would be responsible for deeds of this kind would no more cross the Border than they would use holy water to put out fire in their own clothes even if it was the only water available.

James and Gertrude Devlin were assassinated at their home on the 6th May, 1974. The assassins were waiting at the back of the house at mid-night. This indicates that they were local people or that they had been well instructed by local people. James was being driven home by his wife from the pub in which he works in [789] Coalisland. They drove up as usual to the back entrance of their home. There, the assassin was waiting in military-styled coat and peaked cap with a Stirling sub-machine gun, stolen no doubt from a friend in the UDR. That assassin waited that night in a laneway at the back of James Devlin's house and had in his possession a UDR sub-machine gun. He riddled the car, wounding all three. Then James said he would go for help and moved along the rear seat to the right but the brave Loyalist gunman, says Fr. Faul, opened up again and riddled the driver's side of the car killing him and his wife. His daughter survived with five wounds. Nobody was charged with this murder and few were questioned.

There was a UDR patrol on continual guard duty, night and day, at a nearby electricity station but for some reason that has never been explained, on the night of that double murder that patrol was not on duty. This feature is common to many of the assassinations. People note that when an assassination takes place, the roads are open and there are no UDR blocks. Can the people be blamed for concluding that there is collusion between the assassins and the reserve security forces made up of many undesirable Loyalist members with Government-issued machine guns, guns issued by the British Government, the Government responsible for the legislation before this House today. As one man put it he was UDR until mid-night; he turned his coat and he was UDA after mid-night.

Various cars were seen that night in the vicinity of Devlins. Yet no one was taken in. Local people can put names on those whom they say were involved; yet the Protestant police force do not seem to have a clue about the “baddies” in their own community. That is the type of justice that we are being asked to co-operate with. Does any member of that UDR force, who that night stayed away from that electricity station in order to allow the murders of James and Gertrude Devlin to take place, realise that under this legislation his evidence could, at a future date, be responsible [790] for sending to jail for seven years an Irishman or woman from any county in the Thirty-two Counties?

Michael McCourt, a factory manager was blown to pieces by a booby-trap set in a transistor radio in his factory in Pomeroy, County Tyrone, on 16th September, 1974. This booby-trap was very skillfully made. Local people believed that some British Army expertise was involved in the making of it. The RUC were on the scene within minutes which was surprising. Indeed, it was suggested that they were sitting down the road waiting for the explosion to take place. The British Army, then stationed in Pomeroy for a short period, put out a series of statements implying that McCourt's was a bomb factory. They proceeded to arrest and ill-treat many Catholics in a disgracefully sectarian and bullying way. The Pomeroy people are convinced that the local Loyalist UDR paramilitary group were responsible and that in making that bomb that night they had the assistance of at least one member of the British Army. One member of the British Army helped to make a bomb that murdered Michael McCourt, in Pomeroy, County Tyrone, in September last. That is the same Army with which this Government are asking us to collaborate.

Patrick Falls of Aughamullan, Coalisland, was assassinated by a machine gun fired while helping in his brother's bar in November last. The British Army had been warned about the existence in the area of a Loyalist headquarters. Yet, they exercised no vigilance. They claimed that these people could only be arrested by the RUC. In other words, the British Army did not believe in arresting Loyalists in the Six Counties: they specialise in the arrest of Catholics.

Again, in Coalisland, the people believe that not alone were the RUC not arresting members of this Loyalist headquarters, believed to be responsible for the murder of Patrick Falls, but that they were more likely to warn the perpetrators to get offside quickly and move their guns, that the Army were coming. Patrick Falls [791] died in November. There has been no action since.

Arthur Mulholland, aged 60, and Eugene Doyle, aged 18, were gunned to death in Hayden's Bar, Gortavale, on the 10th February last. The local people claim that this killing was done by local men who knew the bar and knew the identity of the men they were going to kill. They believe that the bar was reconnoitred by some men one hour before the shooting. When the gunman entered with his Stirling sub-machine gun, the standard issue to the UDR, he knew whom to shoot and whom not to shoot. Nobody was arrested. Nobody was kept for questioning, apart from some brief interviews. In that area alone there were 12 assassinations of Catholics, nine by machine-gun fire, by weapons almost certainly used by the UDR, one of the bodies whose co-operation we seek in the legislation before us today. I wonder what the reaction of the Irish people will be if the day ever comes when one of the UDR men is brought down to this city hooded and protected to possibly perjure himself and possibly succeed in sending a decent, innocent person to jail.

This is a type of co-operation to which we in Fianna Fáil object. This is the type of co-operation to which we in Fianna Fáil say: “No way, it is not on.” I believe that if this Government ever pass this legislation, if they ever try to implement it in the way that I am suggesting, then it is giving a licence to illegal organisations in this country to recruit thousands of people who under normal circumstances would not touch them with a 40-foot pole.

Nobody was charged with the murder of Arthur Mulholland and Eugene Doyle. No one was interned. And, says Fr. Faul, the RUC who send many young Catholics, boys and girls, to Long Kesh and Armagh Jail, have never interned any Protestant from Dungannon, Loughgall or Portadown. The RUC have completely failed to offer any protection to Catholics in this area where [792] Catholics have been murdered week in and week out by guns almost certainly supplied by the UDR. Fr. Denis Faul of Dungannon states clearly and categorically that in his opinion the RUC have completely failed to offer any protection to Catholics in that area. The Coalition Government seem to think that the members of the RUC have haloes. This legislation, in order to work at all, must have the 100 per cent co-operation of the RUC. Make no mistake about it, there will be co-operation from the RUC provided it is Catholics one is attempting to charge.

If, by some remote chance, somebody from a Loyalist section happens to cross the Border and is arrested by the Garda, there will be no co-operation from the RUC or the British Army in any effort to charge that individual. The function of the RUC for 50 years has been to protect one section of the population in the Six Counties and harrass the other section and, as a leopard never changes its spots, it should be now clear to anyone who knows anything about the Six Counties, or who is in any way interested in the Six Counties, that the RUC of 1975 are no different from the RUC of 1968 or 1969, no different from the RUC of 1955. I apologise to no one for suggesting that those who support this measure are British collaborators.

In Portadown the story is just the same. Patrick Connolly, 23 years of age, was killed on 4th October, 1972, when a grenade was thrown into his home at Deramore Drive in Portadown. Again, the behaviour of the police has been revolting and disgusting. Again, they wanted to suggest that the Connollys had a bomb factory in their house. After Patrick Connolly was killed what did they do? They took away his clothes for forensic examination and questioned the other members of the family.

This case shows once again the prejudice of the RUC, says Fr. Faul, because Patrick Connolly's life was threatened twice in July, 1972. When his wounded mother staggered from the house after the explosion she saw [793] drunk on the street one of the men who had threatened him in the month of July. When Patrick Connolly received those threats that aged mother reported it to the RUC. Again, no one was questioned for any great length of time; no one was charged and no one was interned. The RUC, says Fr. Faul, turned their guilt and spleen against the bereaved family and harassed them until the guilty Protestant extremists who had plotted this were well clear.

Here, again, is another perfect example of the type of justice administered by the RUC in the Six Counties. Patrick Connolly's mother, in July, 1972, reported to the RUC that her son's life was threatened on two occasions. In October, a grenade was thrown through the window of her house and Patrick Connolly was killed. The RUC spent hours and hours questioning the Connolly family and enabled the guilty Protestant extremists responsible for this foul deed to get away. That is the kind of police to whom a witness could be handed over at a spot along the Border according to this legislation. Any member of the minority in the Six Counties would naturally refuse to opt to return there in these circumstances. We must realise that those members of the RUC who completely ignored this foul murder could in the future play a very important role in the implementation of this legislation.

If, for example, one of those RUC knew that John Doherty was living in Cavan or Donegal or in Cork and they decided that John Doherty should be dealt with, they would ring the Garda Síochána saying that on a certain date in County Armagh John Doherty was in possession of a firearm or an explosive or that on a certain date he caused grevious bodily harm, and the Garda Síochána would go out and arrest him. The RUC man may opt not to come to the Republic to give evidence and his evidence would be given or taken somewhere in the Six Counties.

As a result of the evidence of that RUC man, the Coalition Government could be responsible for sending John [794] Doherty to Mountjoy Jail for seven years on the strength of the whim of an RUC man who stood back and allowed innocent people to be murdered in the Six Counties. If the RUC allow murders to take place like the murder of Patrick Connolly, the murders of Patrick Mulholland, Eugene Doyle, Patrick Falls, Michael McCourt and do not lift a finger to assist or prevent them, who would depend on the evidence they would give at a quiet little hearing somewhere in the Six Counties?

We in Fianna Fáil fully appreciate and agree that anyone guilty of murder should be dealt with or anyone guilty of shooting in the knees should be dealt with and justice should prevail. But what I am more concerned about is the frame-ups by people, by members of the British forces, by members of the RUC who have no sense of fair play and by their deeds, have, for many years, displayed this in no uncertain terms.

This Government, by this legislation, are asking us to co-operate with RUC men who stood back and allowed Catholic young men to be murdered. They are asking us to co-operate with the UDR who have supplied sub-machine guns which, in the last nine months, have been responsible for the deaths of nine people, not 50 miles from my home. I say we should not co-operate, and anyone who in this legislation cooperates with forces of this kind is repeating the history of this country. They are nothing short of British collaborators. Mr. Séamus Mallon, Chairman of the SDLP Parliamentary Party, an Assembly man from County Armagh, in the course of a statement on 18th March this year said:

I fail to understand this ridiculously low rate of detection. It strikes me that the overwhelming majority of people in both areas I have mentioned would be at pains to affirm their support for the RUC.——

It was after a murder.

—— I am confident that I reflect the opinion of the minority community when I question the will of the [795] security forces to prevent these sectarian crimes and bring to justice those responsible. I challenge the RUC to give credible reasons as to why this pattern of sectarian murders and attacks has evaded the processes of detection.

However, in the Republic of Ireland, the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Taoiseach and, regrettably, the Minister for Justice, appear to want to canonise the RUC. If this legislation is to mean anything, then, in future, the evidence of the RUC will be all-important.

Mrs. Dorothy Traynor, 27 Church Hill Park, Portadown, was murdered on 31st March. Martin McVeigh, aged 22, from Ballyowen Park, Portadown, was married ten months ago and his wife was expecting her first baby. On the 3rd of April last he was gunned down at 10.15 at night while cycling home from his job in a metal box factory.

Recently Fr. Faul tells us the threats have appeared against Catholics in that factory, written in the toilets. It is believed that he was fingered by Protestant extremists in the factory and followed home to be killed From experience of previous cases and RUC lack of activity on that night, it is clear that the Loyalists have little to fear from the RUC, whose statements cloaked the meaning of what has been done by their kith and kin. If a Loyalist in the Six Counties is guilty of murder or guilty of blowing up a railway station or anything else he does not need to cross the Border to save himself. He does not need to be a fugitive offender, because he will be protected by the RUC and the UDR. The only people who have crossed the Border in such a circumstance are the Catholics. Whether they are guilty or not they will cross the Border. As I said earlier, if they are guilty of murder they deserve to be punished. It is obvious that the primary purpose of this legislation is to resume what the British have been doing for 50 years in the Six Counties, to discriminate [796] against one section of the community.

I have given many examples in the last three quarters of an hour of the type of justice that we have in the Six Counties. The Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill seeks to collaborate with the British in administering that type of justice. I think plain English demands the description “collaborator” for those who will support it. Fianna Fáil Members of the Dail and Seanad who have surprised the Minister by their reactions have consistently maintained the Party's attitude to the proposed legislation. As far back as the signing of the Sunningdale Agreement Fianna Fáil, through its Leader, Deputy Lynch, expressed serious reservations about the type of law enforcement then mooted. The Leader of Fianna Fáil clearly set out his insistence and the insistence of the party that the only type of law enforcement which Fianna Fáil would support would be an all-Ireland court properly constituted. This remains the party's attitude on the question.

Here I would like to refer to the naïve assumption put forward from some quarters that different groups of people who happen to oppose the same things are therefore in support of one another. In the present context when the Cruise-O'Brien syndrome is applied, the assumption is that by opposing the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill one is ipso facto a provisional IRA supporter. This is a classic example of McCarthyism, the system of character assassination innovated by the late Senator Joe McCarthy. It will be remembered that McCarthy used a Communist scare in the United States to smear those whom he wished to destroy, by the simple expedient I have just mentioned. Brought up to date, the recipe in Ireland reads: “for ‘communist’ insert ‘Provo’.” The Minister for Posts and Telegraphs appears to be the principal advocate for the Bill, even though in a Polish newspaper 12 years ago he was described as follows: “Mr. O'Brien's lack of political ability is disastrous”. The Poles are obviously more far-seeing [797] than some members of the Labour Party.

In his book To Katanga and Back from which I quoted earlier—there will be members of the Labour Party who would wish that it was To Katanga and Stay—the Minister, Deputy Cruise-O'Brien, alluded to the references to Mr. Frank Aiken's statement at the United Nations in 1957 on the question of Red China's admission to the UN, and he constantly referred to the McCarthyism of a British senior delegate who described Mr. Aiken's statement as a straight, fellow-travelling speech. The Minister for Posts and Telegraphs observed his technique and chose to despise it at the time, but he is now deliberately adopting the same technique in an effort to misrepresent and malign the Fianna Fáil Party. He is not the only one, because supporters of this Government believe that if they can get the people of Ireland to think that anyone who opposes this legislation is automatically a supporter of one of the IRA factions, then the people of Ireland will not read the small print and realise the serious effects this legislation could have on any man or woman in this country, innocent or guilty. The innocent could suffer just as quickly as the guilty, especially those living in Border counties, at the whim of a member of the UDR, who for all we know may be supplying Stirling machine guns to the Loyalist murderers in that area, at the whim of a member of the RUC who may have stood back following the murder of innocent and defenceless people in the last few years.

When I spoke here during the discussion on whether this Bill should get a First Reading I stated clearly and emphatically that I held no brief for the IRA. I have never at any time supported any faction of any illegal organisation in this country. I am on record as a very young member of a local authority in 1956, during the lifetime of the last Coalition Government, as publicly condemning the IRA. I am on record in 1961-1962 as publicly condemning the IRA. For the benefit of those who may think otherwise, I wish to state that I believe that only the democratically elected Government are responsible for law and order and [798] the security of this land. No organisation that challenges the legal authority of that Government should be encouraged. That is another reason why I am opposed to this legislation. I am convinced that should a Donegal man be arrested under this legislation on the evidence of a member of the UDR, RUC or the British Army, overnight the popularity of the IRA would rise. I believe the Government are giving the green light to illegal organisations with this legislation.

I opposed the IRA so strongly that in December, 1972, when the Fianna Fáil Government introduced the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill I supported it not only through the lobby but also in my heart, because I believe that any citizen who observes the laws of the State has nothing to fear from that legislation. The only people who could suffer from this legislation are those determined to wreck the State and break the legal authority of it. If we compare the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Act, 1972, with the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill, 1975, we will see that there is absolutely no comparison. The Offences Against the State (Amendment) Act is only chicken feed in comparison with the legislation we are debating today. People observing the laws of this land have nothing to fear from the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Act.

There are people who could suffer under this legislation. People who could be completely innocent, who are not determined to break down authority for the legal security of the State. They could suffer from the evidence of a member of the UDR or the RUC, or a member of the para-troopers who performed in Derry on that Bloody Sunday.

It is interesting to recall what the people who strongly support the present legislation had to say about the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Act. The Leader of the House, Senator O'Higgins, who was then on the Opposition benches recalled the Fine Gael traditions——

Mr. M.J. O'Higgins: Read it.

Mr. McGlinchey: These facts——

[799] Mr. W. O'Brien: Give us the statement you made in 1970.

Mr. McGlinchey: I would invite Senator O'Brien to quote them. I challenge Senator O'Brien to quote them. If he can quote a statement where I advocated or challenged the authority of this State.

Mr. W. O'Brien: You only challenged it when——

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: Would Senator O'Brien desist from interrupting.

(Interruptions.)

Mr. Lenihan: I move the suspension of Senator O'Brien, if he continues in this manner.

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: I would suggest to the House that Senator McGlinchey be allowed to continue speaking on the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill, 1975, which is the matter before the House.

Mr. McGlinchey: Senator O'Brien is perturbed because he might have to go back to Limerick to explain to the people there that by supporting this legislation he is supporting——

Mr. W. O'Brien: The Senator went back to Donegal in 1970——

(Interruptions.)

Mr. McGlinchey: Deputy Blaney was then a member of the Fianna Fáil Party.

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: Would Senator McGlinchey resume his seat for one moment while I try to establish order? Would Senator O'Brien please desist from interrupting the Senator who is making his contributions? His turn to speak will come in due course.

Mr. McGlinchey: I challenge Senator O'Brien to come into this House and, in the course of the speech that I am sure he will make, produce any statement of any kind attributed to me which challenged the authority of the security of this State. That challenge is open and I will await the Senator's speech with interest.

[800] In column 1112 of the Seanad Official Report for Saturday, 2nd December, 1972, Senator O'Higgins said:

Those have always been and will always be cardinal and fundamental principles of the Fine Gael policy. Those principles are part of the tradition of the Fine Gael Party, and part of the tradition and history from which this party derive their strength, their courage and their integrity. For us, those principles were precious and are summed up in the phrase, which possibly some cynics nowadays may regard as a cliché, that we are prepared to put the nation before the party. We take pride in the knowledge, which, perhaps, is forgotten by some and unknown to others, that it was this Fine Gael Party, or their predecessors that established this State and established the institutions of this State. It was the past leaders of this party from whom we can draw inspiration today who established with sure hands and on a firm foundation after 700 years of foreign occupation, an Irish Army, an Irish Police force, an Irish civil service and an Irish judiciary and who did that in the face of a challenge from within, which no infant State should have had to face.

Those facts are known in history and will not be contradicted. Side by side with that great tradition of the Fine Gael Party, this party in its policy and actions and in its entire outlook, has been steeped in the tradition of respect for individual liberty, for the rights of the ordinary people, for the right of free speech and free assembly and the right of the ordinary Irishman as an individual, not to be subject either deliberately or through bad legislation, to victimisation or discrimination.

I would like to remind Senator O'Higgins that as a result of the bad legislation before this House today, people in this country, particularly in the Six Counties, will be victimised and will be discriminated against. Does Senator O'Higgins believe that there [801] is no victimisation or discrimination in the Six Counties? Does he believe everything the British security forces, the RUC or the UDR say to be true when they are charging a person with an alleged offence under this legislation? Does he not realise that this bad legislation will result in further victimisation and discrimination particularly for the minority in the Six Counties? If he does not believe this, I would suggest that Senator O'Higgins go to the Six Counties and do that crash course.

In column 1115, Senator O'Higgins had this to say:

But we still must take into account the question of individual freedom and the rights of the individual in relation to legislation of this sort.

Senator O'Higgins was referring to the Offences Against the State Act. I submit that this legislation, which depends on the security forces in the Six Counties to operate successfully, must and will interfere with individual freedom and, most certainly, will interfere with the rights of the individual. In column 1118, Senator O'Higgins had this to say:

With regard to subsection (2) of section 3 of the Bill virtually all sections of the people, and I daresay many even in the Fianna Fáil Party, reacted strongly against this subsection. It sets out:

Where an officer of the Garda Síochána, not below the rank of Chief Superintendent, in giving evidence in proceedings relating to an offence under the said section 21, states that he believes that the accused was at a material time a member of an unlawful organisation, the statement shall be evidence that he was then such a member.

The Minister defends this extraordinary subsection by saying that evidence is evidence and not proof.

Senator O'Higgins believed that virtually all sections of the Irish people reacted very strongly to subsection (2) of section 3 of the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill, giving this power to an officer of the Garda Síochána.

In this legislation, Senator O'Higgins [802] and the Coalition Government, are indirectly giving the same power to an officer of the RUC, the British Army or of the UDR.

Mr. M.J. O'Higgins: Membership of an unlawful organisation is not mentioned in the Schedule to this Bill.

Mr. McGlinchey: If an officer of the RUC telephones a Chief Superintendent and informs him that one of his constables has been attacked and grievous bodily harm caused to him by John Doherty of County Armagh now living in Wicklow, Donegal or Galway, and that that RUC man was prepared to come down to Dublin and swear that John Doherty caused him grievous bodily harm, then the Garda Síochána would arrest John Doherty.

Mr. Cooney: Any proceeding in this case is initiated by the Attorney General, not by the Garda.

Mr. McGlinchey: Yes, nevertheless, he would still be arrested and charged.

Mr. M.J. O'Higgins: How would he fare under an all-Ireland court?

Mr. McGlinchey: In an all-Ireland court——

Mr. M.J. O'Higgins: He might not be judged by a southern judge.

Mr. McGlinchey: In an all-Ireland court, as envisaged by Fianna Fáil, the Garda or the RUC would be under strict control and every effort would have to be made to ensure that charges of discrimination could not take place.

An Cathaoirleach: Senator McGlinchey should be allowed to make his contribution without interruption.

Mr. McGlinchey: The Minister informs me that the decision about John Doherty will have to be taken by the Attorney General. But if this RUC man comes down to Dublin, gives evidence at the preliminary hearing and swears that he was caused grievous bodily harm, then under the terms of this legislation the Attorney General will have no option but to direct that a case be taken. It [803] is not the first time that people came from the Six Counties and perjured themselves.

It is not so long ago that a young couple were brutally murdered in County Donegal, and the murdered young man's relations live just ten yards from my place of business. A man was arrested and it was obvious that he was guilty. But suddenly at the trial, six or seven people arrived from Derry City, went into the witness box and swore that on the night in question this man was in their company somewhere in the City of Derry. It was obvious to anyone reading the newspapers that those witnesses perjured themselves. I have no doubt that an UDR man who would hand over his Stirling sub-machine gun to be used to murder a Catholic would not stop at perjury. That perjury could be responsible for sending an innocent person to jail under this legislation.

In column 1143 a man for whom I have great respect, Senator Fintan Kennedy, had this to say:

You cannot end violence and injustice by creating a situation in which many thousands of innocent people may be flung into prison on inadequate evidence or on rumour.

Senator Kennedy must surely realise that if he believed that in relation to the Offences Against the State Bill his feeling must be even stronger when it comes to this legislation.

In column 1144 he had this to say:

The Irish Congress of Trade Unions represents 1¼ million workers in Northern Ireland and in the Republic.

That view is truly representative of the people from both parts of the country. They want peace but they do not want a situation where the introduction of this Bill will make matters a great deal worse. As one who opposed the introduction of internment without trial in the North, I equally oppose this measure here. At most it could mean the physical incarceration of thousands of people; at least it will mean the incarceration [804] of the minds of Irishmen and Irish women.

I would remind Senator Kennedy that the Irish Congress of Trade Unions still represents 1¼ million workers in the Six Counties and in the Republic. I agree that their view is truly representative of the people of both parts of this country. I also remind him that Senator Mullen two weeks ago told us that the Executive of his Trade Union, which is also the Executive of Senator Kennedy's union, unanimously agreed to oppose this measure for I presume the reasons given by Senator Kennedy when he spoke here on the Offences Against the State Bill.

Would Senator Kennedy not agree that this legislation more than any other legislation introduced or passed here, will lead, or could lead. to the physical incarceration of thousands of people in the Six Counties particularly? I await with interest what Senator Kennedy has to say about this legislation.

Senator Alexis FitzGerald spoke on the Offences Against the State Bill on that 2nd of December, 1972. In column 1159 he said:

Everyone in the House knows, in so far as anybody bothers about me, that my position on this is absolutely clear! The safety of the State is supreme. I would even go into a Greek colonel situation rather than imperil it, provided I knew who the colonels were.

I am sorry that Senator FitzGerald left a few minutes ago. Possibly when he heard me quoting Senator O'Higgins he suspected that I might ask who the colonels are in this legislation. They are British soldiers, like the paratroopers in Derry on that Bloody Sunday. They are the Sir Frank Kings of the British Army. They are the RUC men who in August, 1969, ravished the Bogside and fired their shots and their bullets into every house. They are the colonels who will assist our Minister for Justice in implementing this legislation. They are the colonels Senator Alexis FitzGerald was looking for two years ago. They are the [805] men upon whom the success of this Bill depends. In column 1160, Senator Alexis FitzGerald said:

We know that laws which are not respected and supported are not capable of being enforced. It is important that the majority of the people are in support of what we decide in relation to this.

Senator Markey gave the impression that he is convinced this Bill has the full support of the people, both in the Republic and in the Six Counties. He tried to give the impression that the Fianna Fáil Party in the last two weeks had got a message from the grass roots that this Bill was worthy of support. I can assure Senator Markey that he is entirely wrong. We in Fianna Fáil are utterly and totally opposed to this legislation for the very reasons given by Senator Alexis FitzGerald on the Offences Against the State Bill three years ago. We know that if this Bill becomes law, it will not be respected or supported. We also know that it is not capable of being enforced.

We have no doubt that if this legislation is submitted to the people by way of a referendum, it will be rejected beyond doubt by Fianna Fáil supporters throughout the length and breadth of this country. It will be rejected, I believe, by Labour supporters, no matter what the Conor Cruise-O'Briens have to say about the subject. I believe there will be some people in Fine Gael who in the ballot box of a referendum would refuse, implicitly and categorically, to give any support to the British Army, the perpetrators of Bloody Sunday, or the RUC, the people responsible for all the trouble in the Six Counties since 1968.

I believe there would even be in Fine Gael people in a referendum who would refuse to co-operate with the UDR because they know that there are in the Six Counties at this moment members of the UDR handing over their Stirling submachine guns to Loyalist para-military groups to murder Catholics.

If this legislation were submitted to the people by way of a referendum, I am absolutely convinced that there [806] would be some people in Fine Gael, however small in number, who would never co-operate or collaborate with people of this kind and that they would demonstrate this in the ballot box. If the Government believe so strongly in this legislation then why do they not submit it to the people in a referendum?

This was not part of the election programme submitted by the Coalition before the election. They have no mandate from the Irish people to introduce obnoxious legislation of this kind. The Government should either have consulted the people in a referendum or consulted the Opposition before they introduced this legislation. I am sure Senator Alexis FitzGerald, if he were here now would agree with me because when he spoke here two-and-a-half years ago on the Offences Against the State Bill at column 1162 he had this to say:

We are not going to have much of a future if the party in power do not consult us in Opposition when dealing with a situation of this kind.

But did Senator FitzGerald suggest at a meeting of the Fine Gael Parliamentary Party when this legislation was first submitted what he preached here two-and-a-half years ago? Surely in a much more controversial issue he should have stood up at that meeting and insisted that before this legislation would see the light of day, either the Fianna Fáil Party or the people should have been consulted in a referendum.

Later on, at column 1162, Senator FitzGerald had this to say:

I support what the Leader of my Party in the Seanad said in relation to this Bill. I dislike an enormous amount of the language in it. It exposes a lot to proving their innocence where they would not be required to do so in normal situations.

That was the opinion of Senator FitzGerald on the Offences Against the State Bill. But would he not now admit that this Bill exposes a lot more people to proving their innocence [807] people possibly living quietly in the Six Counties who may have decided to cross the Border and live in Donegal, Cavan or Monaghan because they could no longer bring up their children in the surroundings in which they found themselves? If some Loyalist paramilitary group decided that they would use the legislation of the State to punish these people instead of shooting them it would be very easy for them to seek the co-operation of the RUC or of the UDR who, in turn, would seek the co-operation of the authorities here. It could happen that as a result of perjury on the part of these people, the innocent would suffer and the Government could send that innocent person to Mountjoy for seven years on trumped-up charges.

No matter what the Minister may say about the Attorney General deciding that there should be a case, the Attorney General must act on evidence. If the UDR come down here hooded, protected by the Garda and the Army to give that evidence—they might well to that because they would consider it great fun—and perhaps give perjured evidence—against innocent people the Attorney General would have to act and innocent people could be sent to jail.

I believe that if Senator Alexis FitzGerald were to reread what he had to say on the Offences Against the State Bill, he would have to think again. I am convinced that he did reread it but when he heard me quoting Senator O'Higgins, he left the House before I came to him.

Later on at column 1162, Senator FitzGerald had this to say:

It is also a Party very concerned about individual liberty. I am distressed by the terms of the Bill. One hour's conversation between intelligent people and the Bill could have been put into a form which would have been quite acceptable to all.

But then, of course, he was referring to the Offences Against the State Bill and it certainly could not apply to this legislation because I feel that in no way could this Bill be acceptable to all. No matter what conversation would take place, this Bill would continue to [808] be, not alone unacceptable to the Fianna Fáil Party but unacceptable to the vast majority of the people of this country.

Senator Owens in column 1163 said this about the Offences Against the State Bill:

There is also the violence of removing our liberty. I find this in the Bill and that is my reason for opposing it.

There is also the violence of removing our liberty. I wonder does Senator Owens realise that as a result of this legislation the liberty of many innocent people will be removed? We heard Senator O'Higgins speak about murderers, about people being shot in the knees, about arsonists. That is a campaign by Government speakers to give the people the impression that they are the only people—murderers, arsonists and so on—who would be dealt with under this Bill. I suggest that many innocent people throughout the Six Counties on the whim of an RUC man, on the word of a British Army paratrooper or a member of the UDR, could be held on trumped up charges and could have difficulty in proving innocence.

Would Senator Owens not agree that this legislation is providing a much greater opportunity for the violence of removing our liberty than the measure she spoke against and voted against in this House two-and-a-half years ago? She made another interesting remark at column 1164 when she said:

What we may expect at a future date is an extension of what are illegal organisations.

It would be appropriate if Senator Owens would repeat that statement today in relation to the legislation before us, because never before has a measure been introduced in this House which will tend to extend illegal organisations more than this legislation.

Just picture the situation where a County Donegal man may possibly have been in Derry on the 4th day of October in 1968 when the RUC first made their attack. Let us [809] assume that this legislation was then on the statute books. I remember marching in Derry in November of that year when 17,000 people marched across Craigavon Bridge and, for the first time in 50 years, held a public meeting in The Diamond in Derry. I was, I believe, the only public representative from the Republic who participated in that parade which was organised by the Civil Rights Movement led then by Eamon McCann, John Hume and Ivan Cooper. Only a few weeks before that the RUC had attempted to and succeeded in stopping the first public meeting and, thanks to Telefís Éireann, the world for the first time got an insight into what was happening in the Six Counties. Not alone the world, but many people in the Republic who knew nothing about the Six Counties and who cared less got that insight. If this legislation was then on the statute books and if my neighbour, who wanted to continue his march to The Diamond was attacked by an RUC constable and retaliated and struck him in the face he could be charged with causing grievous bodily harm. And if that neighbour escaped and got home to Letterkenny he could be arrested under this legislation for escaping, for causing grievous bodily harm. Let us assume that that RUC man would come to the preliminary hearing in the District Court. An RUC man known to the people of Ireland as one of those who drew his baton in Derry on 4th of October is now being brought out, protected by the Gardaí and the Army, to give evidence against a local in the District Court.

Parliamentary Secretary to the Taoiseach (Mr. Kelly): On the facts you have given your friend would neither be charged nor convicted here for retaliating after having been attacked.

Mr. McGlinchey: If the Parliamentary Secretary knew anything about the Six Counties he would know——

Mr. Kelly: We are talking about the courts here.

[810] Mr. McGlinchey: Would the Parliamentary Secretary let me finish?—he would know that perjury in the Six Counties is not too uncommon.

Mr. Kelly: It is not too uncommon here either.

Mr. McGlinchey: I would not know that; perhaps the Parliamentary Secretary would.

Mr. Kelly: Well you do know it.

Acting Chairman (Mr. McCartin): Senator McGlinchey, please, to continue.

Mr. McGlinchey: I do not know it. Perhaps the Parliamentary Secretary would give us examples of it. If the Parliamentary Secretary knew anything about the Six Counties—which I doubt—he would realise that it is not the really guilty that we are concerned so much about but rather the innocent who could be found guilty on trumped up charges. An RUC man who will turn back and take no action following the murder of innocent Catholic people as has happened in the Six Counties in the last six months would go to any length to perjure himself in order to punish someone he had a grudge against.

If my neighbour returned home and if the RUC gave evidence that he did cause grievous bodily harm or that he did escape while under charge, when the evidence is strong enough and sufficient the Attorney General will have no option but to order an inquiry.

Mr. Kelly: The Senator seems to think that the courts here are a terrible crowd of “simple simons” and the members of the legal profession also.

Mr. McGlinchey: I think the Government and the Parliamentary Secretary are “a terrible lot of ‘simple simons’ ” to believe that this legislation will benefit anyone but the Loyalist sections of the Six County community. The Parliamentary Secretary must realise that the Loyalists of the Six Counties do not have to become fugitive offenders, that the Loyalists of the Six Counties do not have to run away when they murder [811] someone. If the Parliamentary Secretary had been here some time ago when I quoted from Fr. Denis Faul's booklet he would realise that there is ample evidence that murders have taken place in recent weeks in the Six Counties and that the RUC not only took no action but appeared to have co-operated with the people responsible for those murders.

Mr. Kelly: If they misbehave is that a reason why we should? That is the morality of the jungle.

Mr. McGlinchey: The point I am making is that the Loyalist people responsible for these foul deeds do not need to become fugitive offenders. They are well protected by the RUC and the UDR and indeed protected by the British Army. They do not have to run across the border and so the Bill does not apply to them at all. They can continue to murder and continue to get those Stirling submachine guns from members of the UDR.

Mr. Kelly: But it applies to them if they commit crimes down here and go back there. That is when it applies to them, and that is the whole point of the Bill.

Mr. McGlinchey: How does it apply? Who is going to arrest them when they go back there—the UDR men, who possibly in the first instance had supplied them with a Stirling sub-machine gun to come across here? The British SAS, who possibly have given them explosives to come down here in the first instance? Are they going to arrest them or co-operate with the Coalition Government?

Mr. Kelly: All right—if they are irresponsible blackguards, all the more easy for us to show them up by behaving properly ourselves.

Mr. Keegan: The Senator should be allowed to make his speech.

Mr. McGlinchey: I am enjoying this. The Parliamentary Secretary asked did we think they were all “simple simons”. Of course you are “simple simons” if you believe that this legislation is going to deal with all sections of our community. This [812] legislation will deal with one section of our community. I gave here many examples in the earlier part of my speech of the activities of the RUC where there is evidence that sub-machine guns were allegedly stolen from the UDR, where in one case near an electricity station manned every night by an UDR patrol, a man and wife were shot with a Stirling sub-machine gun by a man dressed in a para-military uniform. When the man and his wife and child returned home, the gunman stepped out and shot them quite close to that electricity station. But for some peculiar reason that night there were no UDR patrols. If the Parliamentary Secretary has read—and I am sure he has —Fr. Faul's pamphlet he will see a definite claim and definite evidence that the RUC and the UDR are in collusion with the Loyalist para-military groups. In those circumstances if a unit of the UDA comes across the border and assassinates someone or blows up a building and goes back over the border again, does the Parliamentary Secretary really believe that the RUC or the UDR will co-operate with the Government in having them arrested? If he does, then, to use his own words, he is a “simple simon”.

This legislation in no way affects the Loyalist para-military groups who are murdering on one side of the border and possibly have caused explosions on this side. In no way can they be got at unless the full support of the RUC, the British Army and the UDR is secured. On the 1.30 news only this afternoon there was a statement issued this morning by Protestant military groups in the Six Counties that they were responsible for so many sectarian murders in the last three or four months. Who will be dealt with under this legislation? The Catholic minority will be dealt with first of all, and anyone guilty of murder or arson or bank robbery should most definitely be dealt with. There is no one disputing that. There should be some procedure where they can be dealt with, but it is the innocent that I am concerned with, the innocent people who will find [813] themselves in court as a result of trumped-up charges. If the Parliamentary Secretary believes that Her Majesty's forces are not capable of producing trumped-up charges, then he and the Members of his Government are very innocent indeed.

Senator Owens continued in column 1164:

In future perhaps anybody who raises a voice in opposition is to be treated as a criminal and made to suffer the penalties of this Bill.

This has been the type of campaign initiated by Government spokesmen in the last few weeks. They are trying to give the impression—and if it is said long enough and loudly enough the people will believe it—that anyone who opposes this Bill is automatically earmarked as a Provo. If that is repeated often enough Government spokesmen feel that they will get away with this obnoxious legislation. Senator John Boland expressed the fear that Senator Owens previously expressed, and in column 1165 he stated:

I greatly fear that this Bill instead of being a preventive measure may become the actual agent whereby violence will arise in this part of the country.

If Senator Boland and Senator Owens believed this so strongly in 1972 I wonder what do they believe now? Do they not realise that this legislation will become the agent whereby violence will arise in this part of the country? When this Government arrest and charge a man people believe is innocent, on the evidence of a British para-trooper or an UDR man who may have supplied, as Fr. Faul says, Stirling machine-guns for the murder of Catholics, an agent for violence will have been provided. If that occurs the Government will have nobody to blame but themselves. In column 1170 Senator Boland stated:

Subsection (2) of section 3 is abhorrent. I am expressing a personal opinion. I find objection to it. I find that subsection very hard to stomach. I cannot understand why any person, qualified or otherwise, should be allowed to place his belief [814] before a court, and that belief to be treated as evidence.

Would Senator Boland not realise that this legislation is even more abhorrent? What he was objecting to was the belief of a chief superintendent of the Garda Síochána. During the debate on the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill, nobody suggested that the integrity of a chief superintendent of the Garda Síochána would be questioned. The ultimate charge under this legislation could be made as a result of a member of the RUC carrying out the instructions of the local Orange Lodge to deal with an individual. This can happen and I have no doubt that it will happen if the Government take this legislation through Dáil Éireann.

When the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill was introduced in November, 1972, we found that there was considerable opposition to it by members of the Labour Party and by some members of the Fine Gael Party. We all remember that week in this city. The bombers were crawling around Dublin and the mongrel foxes were crawling around Leinster House and the bounty for those foxes was rising by the hour. Fine Gael tabled a motion asking that a Second Reading to the Bill be declined on the ground that it contained matter which was unnecessary and repugnant to the basic principles of justice and liberty and the long-established, fundamental rights of citizens.

The chief advocate against that Bill in December, 1972, is the person responsible for introducing the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill. I am sorry that the Minister for Justice is not here now but he will be back. The Minister for Justice, in that November week, challenged the advice of his own party Leader, and continued, in no uncertain terms, his opposition to that Bill, because he believed it was repugnant to the basic principle of justice and liberty.

Mr. Kelly: Because the Government were sitting down on their jobs; they were not using the law they had. They spent three years with the IRA [815] running wild and had not used the law which they already had.

Acting Chairman (Mr. J. Fitzgerald): Senator McGlinchey to continue.

Mr. McGlinchey: The Parliamentary Secretary knows that since this Government came into office there were more arms taken into this country in 12 months that were taken in since the time of Brian Boru.

Mr. Kelly: We know what came in since this Government took office. We do not know what came in when your party were in office.

Mr. McGlinchey: We do not know what came in. When they were down parading around the Claudia having their photographs taken—I am not talking about the Parliamentary Secretary—and sitting up all night in the Department of Defence, the IRA were taking arms into every little port in this country, laughing at the stupidity of this Government.

Mr. Butler: Where is the evidence?

Mr. McGlinchey: Where have all the arms been found? Where did they come from? They must have come into the country.

(Interruptions.)

Acting Chairman: Would Senators cease interrupting, please, and allow Senator McGlinchey to continue on the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill. I will have to ask the Senator to stop.

Mr. Butler: He should give the evidence.

Mr. McGlinchey: We have been told about arms and arms trials and guns. There is only one Member of the Oireachtas found guilty of an arms charge and he is a Member of the Government. I am a little sick——

Acting Chairman: Would you come back to the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill, please?

Mr. McGlinchey: If you could only educate the Parliamentary Secretary, who appears to know nothing about Seanad procedure, even though he was here for years.

[816] Mr. Kelly: Without ever hearing the Senator open his mouth.

Mr. McGlinchey: The Parliamentary Secretary is hearing me today and he will hear me as long as this Bill is before this House.

(Interruptions.)

Mr. Butler: The Senator is enjoying himself. It is a serious subject.

Mr. McGlinchey: Of course it is a serious subject. Anyone who would attempt to collaborate with the British——

(Interruptions.)

Mr. McGlinchey: If you can go home and explain to your people the reason why we should collaborate——

Acting Chairman: I must ask Senator Butler to stop interrupting and allow Senator McGlinchey to continue.

Mr. McGlinchey: If Senator Butler can go home to Tipperary and explain——

Acting Chairman: I would also ask Senator McGlinchey to please stop inviting interruptions.

Mr. McGlinchey: You know I am not inviting interruptions. There are people who interrupt very easily. If Senator Butler can go home and justify to the people of Tipperary, one of the greatest republican counties in this country, his reason for voting for a Bill——

Mr. Butler: I will do it. I will give my reasons, too.

(Interruptions.)

Acting Chairman: Would Senators please allow Senator McGlinchey to continue?

Mr. McGlinchey: If Senator Butler can persuade the people of Tipperary——

Acting Chairman: Again I would ask Senator McGlinchey to please stop inviting interruptions.

Mr. McGlinchey: ——that he is justified in supporting this Bill and collaborating with the British Army and collaborating with the RUC——

[817] (Interruptions.)

Mr. McGlinchey: ——anyone who supports this legislation must collaborate with the British Army and must collaborate with the RUC and the UDR. It is as simple as that.

Mr. Dolan: On a point of order, in all fairness, Senator McGlinchey should be allowed to make his case. The other side who are interrupting should have the manners to give him a fair hearing.

Acting Chairman: Senator McGlinchey to continue.

Mr. McGlinchey: The amendment proposed by Fine Gael suggests that the Offences Against the State Bill was repugnant to the basic principles of justice and liberty. I wonder how can a Minister for Justice reconcile his views on the Offences Against the State Bill with the measure that he is putting before this House? How can a man who believes that the Offences Against the State Bill was repugnant to the long-established, fundamental rights of citizens, not alone operate that Bill in the last two years but introduce, in the last few weeks, a Bill which is repugnant to the basic principles of justice and liberty; a Bill for people in the Six Counties who stand a chance of having to face trial by a Dublin Government on trumped-up charges; who could be sent to Mountjoy on the evidence of one of the paratroopers who murdered 13 people in the city of Derry on Bloody Sunday; who could be sent to Mountjoy Jail for seven years on the evidence of the RUC who baton-charged the Nationalist people of Derry City on 4th October, 1968; who could be sent to Mountjoy on the evidence of members of the UDR who have handed over Stirling submachine guns to Loyalist para-military groups, and who, in turn, in the last few weeks, and indeed within the last few days, have used those Stirling submachine guns to murder Catholics in the Six Counties?

The Minister for Justice, as Opposition spokesman on Justice in 1972, led the attack against the [818] Offences Against the State Bill on the ground that it was repugnant to justice and liberty. Does he not realise that the matter before us today is much more repugnant and that people, particularly in the Six Counties, could suffer as a result of that? On that occasion the words of Deputy Cooney were as follows:

How can Fianna Fáil come into this House and ask this Parliament to support a Bill the likes of which can only be found on the statute books of South Africa?

Deputy Cooney believed that the Bill he operated for the last three years could only be found in the statute books of South Africa. Now he asks us to propose a measure the likes of which could not even be found in South Africa.

Mr. Kelly: The likes of it are on our own statute books in several places, and put there by your Government.

Mr. McGlinchey: The likes of this Bill can be found nowhere. It is very easy for the Parliamentary Secretary to interrupt and make statements that he cannot back up because it is quite obvious to me from his original interjection that he knows nothing and cares less about the people in the Six Counties just as his party does. We got a lecture from the Minister for Justice, when as plain Deputy Cooney he led an attack against the Offences Against the State Bill. He reminded us that every Easter the Minister only had to look at the daily papers to see photographs of men of military rank in para-military uniforms strutting the streets of this city and the city of Cork. Then he wanted to know why all these men had not been imprisoned. The Minister for Justice has been Minister now for a little over two years and these parades are still continuing.

Mr. Kelly: I think I saw a Guard of Honour at the Fianna Fáil Commemoration in Arbour Hill if I am not mistaken.

Acting Chairman: Could the Parliamentary Secretary please restrain [819] himself and allow Senator McGlinchey to make his speech?

Mr. McGlinchey: The Parliamentary Secretary did not see a para-military guard of honour at any Fianna Fáil function.

Mr. Dolan: Might I ask the Parliamentary Secretary to contain himself while Senator McGlinchey is speaking?

Acting Chairman: The Chair is doing his best. Senator McGlinchey to continue.

Mr. McGlinchey: The Parliamentary Secretary has made a very serious charge against the largest political party here, and that was that that political party were openly breaking the law that they acted as a para-military group and wore berets and so forth at some Fianna Fáil function. He knows in his heart that that is not true. Fianna Fáil crushed all organisations that challenged the State, and with regard to the Blue Shirts, they dealt with them effectively.

Mr. Butler: What about the Provos?

Mr. McGlinchey: They dealt with them, too.

Acting Chairman: Would Senator McGlinchey please come back to the Bill?

Mr. Keegan: If he is let.

Mr. McGlinchey: When the Government introduced the Offences Against the State Bill to deal with the Provos, the Minister for Justice, then Deputy Cooney, claimed that it was repugnant to the basic principles of justice and liberty, and yet this same man comes into this House as Minister for Justice and introduces a Bill which without doubt will affect the liberty of thousands of innocent people living in the Six Counties. This Government will co-operate with the British authorities to continue the harassment of the Catholic minority in the Six Counties as a result of trumped-up charges and perjury on the part of the security forces.

[820] Acting Chairman: I would ask the Senator when he is quoting to give the reference, please.

Mr. McGlinchey: Deputy Cooney, in column 282, volume 264, of the Dáil Official Report of Wednesday, 29th February, 1972 stated:

Subsection (2), however, is the real nub of this Bill. Subsection (2) is what makes this Bill so totally and completely obnoxious. It gives power to an officer of the Garda not below the rank of chief superintendent to state that he believes that an accused man was at a material time a member of an unlawful organisation, and that statement shall be evidence that he was then such a member. That is a very positive statement of law. The Minister seeks to justify it on a number of extraordinary grounds, but that statement of law brings into our legal system hearsay evidence to allow a person to be convicted of a criminal offence, and hearsay evidence has been rejected consistently by our courts for many serious reasons.

The Minister as the official spokesman for Fine Gael on justice strongly condemned the power given to a Chief Superintendent. The Minister now proposes to give that same power indirectly; it is not written in the Bill, but it is there.

Acting Chairman: I think the Senator is assuming too much. The Senator should stick more to the Bill, please, not to what he assumes is in the Bill.

Mr. McGlinchey: As a result of this Bill, the Minister is giving the same power to an inspector of the RUC, indeed, to a constable of the RUC, to the British Army, to the murderer of Patrick McElhone, to that soldier who arrested Patrick McElhone. If Patrick McElhone had escaped while under arrest and if he landed across the Donegal border, the Cavan border or the Monaghan border, that soldier would have sent his report up the line, and that report would have gradually reached the Garda Síochána [821] who would have arrested Patrick McElhone.

Business suspended at 6 p.m. and resumed at 7.15 p.m.

Mr. McGlinchey: Before the tea break, I was suggesting that, if the late Patrick McElhone had escaped from that British soldier on that memorable and sad day and had come across the Border, he would eventually have found himself charged with escaping while in custody. When his case would come before the preliminary hearing, to be heard by the District Justice, a very strange situation would exist. Firstly, if that British soldier opted to come across the Border—hooded, no doubt—to give evidence at the preliminary hearing in the District Court, according to this legislation he would have had that option and right.

Mr. Cooney: That is not right. He would not have that option, and such a charge would not lie in the situation that Senator McGlinchey gave us.

Mr. McGlinchey: According to this legislation, witnesses can be taken or can come across the Border——

Mr. Cooney: The Senator mentioned the case of a man escaping from the custody of a soldier. That would not be lawful custody as envisaged by this section, so there would be no extra-territorial offence.

Mr. McGlinchey: According to the Schedule of this Bill the following offences would be considered in this legislation. Apart from murder, manslaughter and arson, we have offences against the person:

Any offence under the following provisions of the Offences against the Person Act, 1861—

(a) section 18 (wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm);

(b) section 20 (causing grievous bodily harm).

If, in the course of his escape, Patrick McElhone found it necessary to wound that soldier, with intent to [822] cause grievous bodily harm, or if he did not wound him but the soldier claimed he did, and considering the mentality of the soldier—a British soldier who took a young man out of his home, away from his parents, pulled a trigger and shot him dead—would he not be capable of committing perjury had that young man escaped?

Let us assume for the moment, that he did escape and crossed the Border into County Donegal. Patrick McElhone would eventually have had to appear in a District Court in County Donegal on the preliminary hearing charged with escaping from a British soldier who, if he had not escaped, would have shot him dead. The Government of this Republic are saying that Patrick McElhone was wrong to escape; he should have allowed himself to have been murdered by this British soldier. This is what is being said in this legislation.

Mr. Halligan: That is the greatest nonsense.

Mr. McGlinchey: If, instead of being shot dead, Patrick McElhone had escaped from that British soldier, and if that British soldier had claimed he was caused grievous bodily harm in the course of his escape, Patrick McElhone, according to the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill before this House, would be charged with escaping. The Minister cannot deny that.

Mr. Cooney: There is no point in denying that because the Senator will read it as he sees it.

Mr. Yeats: They could say he had a gun and charge him with having a firearm without a licence.

Mr. Killilea: Senator McGlinchey is correct.

Mr. McGlinchey: In other words, Patrick McElhone would have escaped the rigours of the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill if he had allowed what in fact did happen, and that was to be murdered by a member of the security forces whom we are being asked to support, to co-operate and collaborate with, according to the [823] legislation before us now. When I made that statement Senator Halligan described it as nonsense. It is not nonsense. Any Member of this House, or any member of the public, could stop his car in any part of the Six Counties, and a British soldier or a member of the RUC, or a member of the UDR, could slip a few bullets into that car and that member of the public could eventually find himself charged under this legislation.

When spokesmen of the Government repeat, and continue to repeat, that Fianna Fáil are opposed to legislation dealing with murderers, bank robbers and arsonists, they completely overtook the main fact—that Fianna Fáil are opposed to legislation that could injure innocent people. Anyone who knows anything about judicial justice in the Six Counties, not alone for the last five years but for the last 50 years, must realise that the RUC are the scum of this earth. No Government in the Republic at any time should introduce legislation that would co-operate and collaborate with that scum.

From January, 1970, until January, 1975, 1,345 complaints were submitted to the Director of Public Prosecutions alleging assaults committed by the RUC. Of these, there were only 31 prosecutions. Of the 31 prosecutions, there were only eight convictions. In seven years of terror by the RUC, Her Majesty's gracious Government, with whom this Government see fit to collaborate in this legislation, got eight convictions against the RUC. There were 400 cases of brutality documented since 1971. The RUC, the body the Coalition Government seem to think have haloes on their heads, have been accused of more than 130 cases of torture before the European Commission of Human Rights within the last few years. The Northern Community relations Commission have accused the RUC publicly of open collaboration with the UDA in putting Catholics out of their homes in White Abbey. This is the body this Government are depending on to operate this legislation successfully.

[824] Before the tea-break the Parliamentary Secretary to the Taoiseach pointed out that Loyalist para-military groups who cross the border to commit outrages on this side could, as a result of this legislation, be arrested when they return home. Does any one in his true senses believe that a body that has 1,345 complaints against it for assault, 400 cases of brutality documented against it, 130 cases of torture submitted to the European Commission of Human Rights and accused by the Northern Community Relations Committee of open collaboration with the UDA, would arrest a Loyalist para-military group for blowing up a building or murdering somebody in the Irish Republic? If the Government believe they can get this cooperation from the RUC, then they are even more stupid than I believed. Does anyone seriously believe that a Loyalist para-military group who carried out outrages similar to those in Dungannon and Portadown, would flee from the Six Counties for shelter? Why should they flee from the Six Counties? Are they not being protected by the RUC and the UDR? Have they not carried out their murders with sub-machine guns supplied by members of the UDA? Fr. Faul has in his booklet, The Triangle of Death, clearly provided the evidence that UDR Stirling sub-machine guns were used to murder Alphonsus McCrown, Frances McCaughey, Patrick Molloy, Francis and Bernadette Mullen, Daniel Hughes, James and Gertrude Devlin, Michael McCourt, who was killed by a bomb made by a British officer, Patrick Falls, I could go on and on.

Notice taken that 12 Members were not present; House counted, and 12 members being present,

Mr. McGlinchey: I have established that Loyalist para-military groups, whether they commit an offence in the Six Counties or in the Republic, will not in most cases be dealt with under this legislation. It appears that the Government are doing what the British Government have been doing for years and what the Six County [825] Government have done since its foundation, and that is, legislating for one section of the community in the Six Counties. There is only one section of that community that would consider it necessary to flee from so-called justice in the Six Counties. Listening to Senator O'Higgins and others talk about the shooting in the knee-caps and the atrocities of the IRA, one would get the impression that these Senators are not aware that there exist in the Six Counties strong Loyalist para-military groups. While I hold no brief for the IRA they are not the only organisation guilty of these atrocities.

I could describe this legislation in the same way as the Minister for Justice described the Offences Against the State Bill when he was an Opposition Deputy, as unfair, unjust and essentially obnoxious, and it turns the legal system upside down.

Perhaps the words that will be remembered most on that evening when the Minister as Deputy Cooney, spokesman on Justice for Fine Gael, leading the attack against the Offences Against the State Bill, were when he claimed it was window-dressing on the part of the Government to ask to give them the power to turn the right of citizens, the very freedom we are here to protect, into a nullity. He asked the House when it came to a vote on that Bill to decide in conscience as the Minister had demonstrated that the present laws are inadequate to justify this awful interference with individual freedom.

Is the Minister for Justice seriously suggesting that this legislation will not interfere with the individual freedom of many innocent people who are either living in the Six Counties or have been forced to flee from it? It is hard to reconcile the remarks made by the Minister when he led the attack against the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill with his action in bringing in the most obnoxious legislation ever introduced since the foundation of the State.

The spokesman for Labour stated on that occasion that they realised that the Bill would be presented as encouragement [826] and support, tacit or open, for illegal organisations which attempt to advocate the achievement of political or other aims by the use of force. If the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Social Welfare believed in December, 1972 that the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill could be encouragement and support for illegal organisations, surely in April, 1975 he must also realise that the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill will give greater encouragement and greater support to illegal organisations. I shudder to think what would have happened if Patrick McElhone had escaped. If he were brought to Letter-kenny District Court or a District Court in Meath or Tipperary, and charged with escaping after causing a British soldier grievous bodily injury would we not have a situation where thousands of people from that county and surrounding counties would gather outside that courthouse to register their disapproval of the action taken by the Government in arresting McElhone? Would we not have a situation in which those protests would be organised by illegal organisations who would cash in on it as they have in the past? Would not hundreds of young people who, up to then, had no interest in any illegal organisation suddenly be fired with a sense of injustice and find themselves members of an illegal organisation?

If the Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Social Welfare believed that the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill would encourage people to join the IRA would he not think that the present legislation is a greater source of encouragement to those people? If Fianna Fáil attempted to introduce this legislation I could imagine the speeches of the present Minister and of Deputy Cluskey and of most Members opposite.

Deputy Cluskey said on that occasion that the Offences Against the State (Amendment) Bill attempted to deprive Irishmen and women of their basic human rights in any democracy to a proper and correct interpretation and implementation of the law. Will the Minister for Justice guarantee the [827] people of Ireland that when this Bill becomes law every man and woman will have a proper and correct interpretation and implementation of the law? Will the Minister guarantee that he will successfully persuade the RUC and the UDR to see to it that their part in the operation of this law will be correct and that it will be implemented properly?

The Minister for Justice will not give that guarantee: he could not do so. Anyone who knows anything about the operation of justice in the Six Counties for 50 years knows that that guarantee could not be given. In 1972 the spokesman for the Labour Party believed that the Offences Against the State Bill was attempting to deprive Irishmen and women of their basic human rights. That same Labour Party spokesman has given his blessing 100 per cent to this legislation. That same Labour Party, the oldest republican party in this country, is now supporting legislation which will certainly deprive many people, particularly people living in the Six Counties, of their basic human rights.

Mr. Killilea: Not all of them.

Mr. McGlinchey: The Labour Party spokesman on that occasion stated that, according to the Offences Against the State Bill, a man could now be brought before the courts and that if the matter was tracked down to its original source, he would be convicted on the word of an informer who would not even inform at first hand. But the Labour Party spokesman at that time was referring to the Garda Síochána. I supported the Offences Against the State Bill because I believed that any lawabiding citizen, going about his business, had nothing to fear from that Bill. It was only those who threatened the security of the State, who threatened the democratic procedures of the State, who had anything to fear.

The Labour Party felt that someone could be convicted on the word of an informer, who would have been a [828] member of the Garda Síochána, and the Labour Party would not support the word of a member of the Garda Síochána. But in this legislation the Labour Party are supporting the word of an ex-B. Special, or the word of a paratrooper who murdered 13 people 22 miles from my home. They are supporting the word of the RUC who, on 4th October, 1968, baton-charged innocent people in the historic city of Doire Colmcille and triggered off the situation that has existed ever since. They will accept the word of one of those informers, but they were violently opposed in 1972 to accepting the word of a Chief Superintendent of the Garda Síochána. I am not surprised at Fine Gael. History, as far as they are concerned, is repeating itself.

Mr. Boland: So are you.

Mr. McGlinchey: I will continue to repeat and to answer the charges or refute the impressions given by some of the Fine Gael spokesmen that this Bill is necessary to deal with murderers and arsonists. Senator Boland, who has just interrupted me, spoke in this House on the Offences Against the State Bill. In column 1165 of 2nd December, 1972, he said that he greatly feared——

Mr. Boland: On a point of order, I was not physically able to be here for all the Senator's speech. I understand that the Senator has already quoted me in the course of the debate. I wonder whether the Chair ought to call the speaker to order as he is now repeating himself.

Mr. Killilea: That is not a point of order.

Mr. Boland: It certainly is.

Acting Chairman (Mr. McCartin): If there is repetition the Chair will call attention to it.

Mr. McGlinchey: I fully understand that Senator Boland does not want me to remind him of what he said in this House two years ago.

Mr. Boland: I do not need to be reminded by Senator McGlinchey.

[829] Mr. McGlinchey: I fully understand that Senator Boland would——

Mr. Boland: I will remind you of the time when you were Blaney's lap dog.

Mr. McGlinchey: ——like us to forget that he came into this House in December, 1972, and said that the Bill, instead of being a preventive measure might become the actual agent whereby violence would arise in this part of the country. I know that Senator Boland must realise that if what he said about the Offences Against the State Bill were true it must be equally true of this Bill. I have no doubt that, if this Bill were introduced by Fianna Fáil, one of its principal opponents would be Senator John Boland.

The Criminal Justice (Jurisdiction) Bill was described by the Labour Party spokesman, in 1972, as a pollution of justice. I should borrow those words from Deputy Cluskey to describe the present legislation. The Labour Party were concerned that the Offences Against the State Bill would result in oppression and in bringing support for the IRA.

Deputy Cluskey went on to say:

If we are to continue with this type of legislation it would be the only possible way that I can see of the IRA gaining any support in this part of the country, not because people would agree with the methods of violence but because they would be opposed to a Government that would inflict this type of repressive legislation on them.

This is exactly the point that I was making here a few minutes ago in connection with this legislation. This Bill now before us could bring support to the IRA, and it is the only way that I could see the IRA gaining any support in this part of the country. Again, as Deputy Cluskey believed in 1972, and as I believe in 1975, the IRA would have gained support not because people would agree with their methods of violence but because they would be opposed to the Government that would inflict this type of repressive legislation on them.

[830] It is difficult to find enough adjectives to describe my real feelings about this legislation. Perhaps I could borrow a few from the words used by the present Minister for Finance, Deputy Ryan, when, as Deputy Richie Ryan, he strongly opposed the Offences Against the State Bill. He said that it was evil, oppressive, dangerous, excessive, open to abuse, that it was threatening, intimidating, dangerous and excessive legislation.

Mr. Boland: Coming back to the start of the record again.

Mr. McGlinchey: I have only started this record. I think that that is a fair description. I wonder, if the Minister for Finance found it necessary to describe the Offences Against the State Bill in this manner, what has happened since to make him change his mind?

What has happened since to make him agree to support legislation that is much worse, more evil, more oppressive, more dangerous, more excessive and more open to abuse, more threatening, more intimidating than the legislation which he so violently opposed two years ago? And he did oppose it violently: he believed that the Offences Against the State Bill was rich fertiliser for anarchy and that it would stimulate illegal activity and further rioting in the streets, maiming people and damaging property.

Looking back since the implementation of the Offences Against the State Bill, while I recall one or two incidents of attempted rioting, I think, in the main, it would be admitted that the forecast then made by the Minister for Finance, then in Opposition, did not come to pass. But I am gravely afraid that in certain circumstances the forecast the then Deputy Richie Ryan made could come to pass with the operation of this legislation. I have no doubt whatsoever that the Loyalist groupings in the Six Counties will take advantage of this legislation to settle certain scores with people with whom they are not too friendly. Unfortunately, this Government will be obliged [831] through this legislation—unwillingly, no doubt, but nevertheless obliged— to help these Loyalist groupings.

Mr. Killilea: On a point of order I think the Labour Party should listen to the contribution of Senator McGlinchey.

Notice taken that 12 Members were not present; House counted and 12 Members being present,

Mr. McGlinchey: The Minister for Finance took Deputy Carter to task two years ago. Apparently the Deputy had suggested that it was only dangerous bolshies who did not approve of the Offences Against the State Bill. Deputy Richie Ryan, as he then was, pointed out that the SDLP, the Nationalist Party in the Six Counties and a Mr. John Brooke of the Unionist Party were also very much against the legislation. But strangely enough on this occasion, the SDLP are very much opposed to the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill. I am sure the Nationalist Party are as well. But I have no doubt that Mr. John Brooke of the Unionist Party will be very pleased with this legislation. I have no doubt that the supporters of the Coalition Government will be very pleased that Mr. John Brooke is very pleased. It would appear to me that the top priority of the National Coalition Government is to ensure that the John Brookes of this island are kept pleased irrespective of how it might affect other sections of our community.

The Minister for Finance told us three years ago that we are obliged by international conventions not to find people guilty before convicted and that the Offences Against the State Bill was tantamount to saying that the people are guilty and must prove their innocence. But in the legislation before this House today are the Government of which Deputy Richie Ryan is a member not doing worse than what he suggested in 1972? Is this legislation not designed in such a way that the perjured evidence of a member of Her Majesty's security forces could find an innocent person guilty? Remember, in the Offences Against the State Bill all [832] that was necessary was that a defendant should go into the witness box and deny membership of an illegal organisation and that defendant was automatically released.

The first person arrested under the Offences Against the State Act lived just ten yards from my place of business. He was a member of the IRA and as a result the district was reeking with Provos. On the first morning, he refused to recognise the court one week after the passing of that Bill. He refused bail. The case was adjourned at last, at Christmas, with him in custody. But after one night in custody he went to court next morning and announced under oath that he had resigned from the IRA and that he was ceasing his activities. That man was released immediately. He returned home to my native town and as a result much of the Provo activity in the neighbourhood ceased.

That was the Offences Against the State Bill that was violently opposed by the Minister for Justice and the Fine Gael Party, some of them, and exclusively by the Labour Party. I have first-hand evidence that within one week of the passing of that legislation that that Act was very useful and very effective. It was not necessary for that man whom I speak of to prove his innocence: it was only necessary for him to swear that he was innocent. That was accepted.

But in this Bill the matter is very different. It is not the evidence of the accused that will be accepted. It could be the evidence, the perjured evidence, of a member of Her Majesty's British forces. I feel, as Deputy Richie Ryan felt in December, 1972, that the law was already adequate to bring about a state of peace and order in our midst throughout the whole island in so far as we have any control over what happens in what he calls Northern Ireland and what I call north-east Ireland.

That great liberal, the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs was described 12 years ago in a Portuguese newspaper in the following words: “Mr. O'Brien's lack of political ability is disastrous”. Indeed not a day goes by when the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs does [833] not prove conclusively how wise the Portuguese were. Meanwhile, the Minister is in the role of spokesman on this Bill. Two years and four months ago he was more liberal in his outlook and claimed then that the Government were trying to put the Opposition in a position where their responsible concern for the rule of law could be misrepresented as having sympathy with law-breakers. Strangely enough, in the last few weeks that Minister, dealing with the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill, is doing exactly what he accused the Fianna Fáil Government of doing.

That Minister has spent the last fortnight suggesting to the Irish people that any person who dared to oppose or speak against this legislation was a Provo at heart, in the hope that the Irish people would only read the large print and would not study the very important small print in the Bill. The Minister, as plain Deputy Cruise-O'Brien, accused the Fianna Fáil Government of putting the Fine Gael and Labour Opposition in a position where their responsible concern for the rule of law would be represented as sympathy for law-breakers. Only this evening the Parliamentary Secretary to the Taoiseach made a serious charge to the effect that the Fianna Fáil Party had parades which included people in paramilitary uniforms, berets, and so on. The Parliamentary Secretary knows perfectly well that this is untrue. I suppose he believes that if he says it often enough he will get people to believe him.

The Minister for Posts and Telegraphs as an Opposition Deputy believed, as Senator Alexis FitzGerald stated, that the Taoiseach, then Deputy Lynch, should have called in the Labour and Fine Gael Leaders to discuss the legislation before it was introduced. Why did the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs not use his persuasive talents to persuade the present Taoiseach and the Leader of Labour to discuss this legislation with the Leader of Fianna Fáil? I have no doubt that when this legislation was discussed at the Cabinet table there were rows about it between Fine Gael and Labour supporters. I am quite sure that all the members of the [834] Labour Party did not swallow this legislation hook, line and sinker. I am sure that members of the Fine Gael Party, men like Deputy John L. Sullivan from Cork, would not swallow this legislation.

I have no doubt that in ten years from now, when the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs will be a lecturer in some small university in some small outpost in South Africa, he will write another book. He will probably call it “My Years as an Irish Minister”. In that book he will tell all, he will disclose every row that took place at the Cabinet table. He will disclose the rows that took place within Fine Gael and Labour over the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill. He will disclose every Cabinet secret that he knows. But you will say “Aha, he cannot do that, you are not allowed to disclose Cabinet secrets, you are not allowed ever in your life, you take an oath, you cannot tell in ten years from now the rows that took place over the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill. It is illegal”.

Mr. J. Fitzgerald: It must not be right or we would have heard about it.

Notice taken that 12 Members were not present; House counted, and 12 Members being present,

Mr. McGlinchey: I was saying that in ten years from now we will probably hear about all the rows that took place at the Cabinet table and in the Party Rooms of Fine Gael and Labour when this legislation was first discussed.

Mr. Boland: Tell us what happened in 1970. That was the time when you did not know whether to go for one side or the other.

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: Senator McGlinchey, on the Bill, please.

Mr. McGlinchey: I do not think Senator Killilea should have summoned Senator Boland back from the bar at all. He gets worse every time he comes back.

Mr. Boland: On a point of order, I do not think that remark was called for. In the interests of accuracy, it [835] happens to be inaccurate. Senator McGlinchey might be better if he went down there himself.

Mr. McGlinchey: Possibly.

Mr. Killilea: Senator Boland is not able to take his beating.

Mr. Boland: You go back to Salt-hill and the bikinis.

Mr. Killilea: One feels sorry for Senator Boland at times.

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: Let Senator McGlinchey continue with his contribution.

Mr. McGlinchey: As I was saying, probably in ten years from now the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs will write a book in which he will tell us of all the rows that took place during the discussion on this document. There are Members of this House who will say that the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs could not write a book about that, that he has taken an oath never to disclose discussions at the Cabinet table. He also worked for an organisation for the United Nations and U Thant as Acting Secretary General had occasion to write to the Minister pointing out to him that he could not disclose——

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: I appreciate the Senator is making a long speech, but he is straying rather far from the terms of what is before the House.

Mr. McGlinchey: What I am leading up to is that we will hear the whole story about this Bill in due course and the person who will tell us that whole story is the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs——

Mr. McCartin: If anybody from Fianna Fáil could write he would tell us a few stories about rows too.

Mr. McGlinchey: ——because the Minister would ignore the stipulation of secrecy just as he said in his book, when U Thant pointed out to him that he could not disclose the secrets of the United Nations——

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: I had to tell you some moments ago to confine [836] yourself to the general principles of the Bill. You are going outside it again. Please try to keep yourself in order.

Mr. McGlinchey: I have made my point that the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs will tell us of every little detail, every little argument and every little row that took place during the discussion and the framing of the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill. Any person who says he does not consider himself bound by staff regulations of an organisation when he is no longer a member of that organisation will no doubt do the same as far as Cabinet secrets are concerned.

Mr. Killilea: Probably has them already.

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: Any attack on a Minister who is not in the House is highly disorderly. Would Senator McGlinchey continue on the Bill before the House?

Mr. McGlinchey: I have not attacked any Minister.

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: Your colleague who is out of order in any case, has just made an attack.

Mr. McGlinchey: The Minister for Posts and Telegraphs does not like the word “collaboration”.

Mr. McCartin: If the Senator was here he would know he condemned it last week.

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: I am not interested in these side comments. Could we have a discussion on the Bill?

Mr. Killilea: On a point of order, when a Senator makes an accusation, would he quote?

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: I am not interested in accusations. I am interested in a debate on what is before the House. Senator McGlinchey should be allowed to continue without interruptions or assistance.

Mr. Killilea: I agree, but when a Senator insists——

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: If the Senator agrees, he should let Senator [837] McGlinchey speak. The Senator has made his contribution.

Mr. McGlinchey: In deference to the sensitive nature of the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs I would say that in supporting the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill he wishes us to co-operate with what he described in page 30 of his book as a system of oppression and calculated degradation such as Europe has seldom seen. We should pay particular attention to those words of the author of the book To Katanga and Back. He believed then that the system operated by Britain as far as this country was concerned was a system of oppression, a system of calculated degradation such as Europe has seldom seen. He is asking us and the people of the country to co-operate with that system in the Bill before the House. He would probably say that this is a reference to the distant past and that Britain has now purged herself of anything so dishonourable. In pages 305 and 306 of his book he records a damning indictment of British treachery and duplicity which amounted to a complete betrayal of a solemn commitment to the Security Council as recently——

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: What is relevant to To Katanga and Back is not necessarily relevant to the Bill. Would the Senator relate his remarks to the Bill and the general principles?

Mr. McGlinchey: The Government are asking us to co-operate and collaborate with a system of justice in the Six Counties. I take it that that is relevant to the Bill. A member of the Government, in a book that he wrote five years ago, recorded a damninig indictment of British treachery and duplicity. This amounted to a complete betrayal of the Security Council, ment to the Security Council, and I would suggest to the Leas-Chathaoirleach that if the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs believes that the British were guilty of treachery and duplicity, if they were guilty of a complete betrayal of the Security Council, surely the Minister must realise that the same British will once again be guilty of treachery as far as this [838] country is concerned and as far as this legislation is concerned.

If the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs in 1962 accused the British of a complete betrayal of a solemn commitment to the Security Council, does he and the Government not realise that the same British are capable of yet another betrayal of this country? By that betrayal innocent people in the Six Counties could suffer. It has often been suggested, and as far as I remember suggested by Fine Gael, and certainly by Labour, that the hideous British SAS were guilty of bombings in this city. Would any man who used a bomb in this city not perjure himself to have innocent people in the Six Counties sent to gaol in the Republic? I would like to know whether the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs and the Government of which he appears to be principal spokesman have acquired new evidence which would suggest that the British Government have suddenly reformed and are now to be trusted implicitly.

It is obvious because of the extraordinary manner in which this Bill has been processed that once again a British spider is inviting the Irish fly into the parlour. Unfortunately, it would appear that the fly in this case is only too willing to oblige. The British recently published British wartime papers telling the story of how the greatest Irishman of this century, Éamon de Valera, refused to plunge this country into World War II as a down payment on a vague promise of a united Ireland. Very few people at present would doubt the wisdom of that decision, with the possible exception of the last leader of Fine Gael.

An Leas-Chathaoirleach: Would Senator McGlinchey continue on the Bill and be relevant to it?

Mr. McGlinchey: It has often been said that the Irish dwell too much in the past. It has also been rightly said that statesmen who neglect the lessons of history do so at their peril. We have evidence of that in this legislation. This Government, in co-operation with the British, are neglecting [839] the lessons of history, the lessons of 15 years ago. I am not saying that the Taoiseach or his Government would deliberately set out to harm this country. What I am saying is that the complete lack of political wisdom and ability where the national position is concerned is in danger of setting us back more than 50 years at a time when a little foresight could bring real progress to the process of national advancement.

I am just as worried as anybody else that the Twenty-six Counties should be an effective sanctuary for those who commit murder or other outrages against innocent people in the North of Ireland. They sully the noble cause of republicanism by claiming that their crimes are political. This Bill certainly will not remedy the situation. Two evils would emerge where only one existed. Subversive organisations would be presented with yet another rallying point. The misery we see today which may have encouraged the Government to introduce this legislation can only be permanently removed by a planned and orderly British disengagement from this country. In the interim period we must devise machinery for dealing with the type of crimes mentioned. Fianna Fáil have proposed the correct and realistic solution—an all-Ireland court properly constituted. If the Northern Loyalists are sincere in their loud protestations about law and order, they will readily agree to this solution, to which they would also be subject.

A precondition for the setting up of this court would be a system of policing and a judicial process which would be clearly seen to be fair and just for this island as a whole. By proposing anything less the Government must stand accused of collaborating with that system which is manifestly rotten and which precipitated the present conflict in the first place. I cannot understand how the Government could accept this legislation. It is divisive legislation, and it will divide the Irish people.

Mr. Cooney: I can forgive the Senator for being loud and long but I tor McCartin and the rest of the Fine [840] cannot forgive him for being so utterly boring.

Mr. McGlinchey: I am glad the Minister forgives me. I hope the people arrested under this legislation— innocent people from Derry, Tyrone, Fermanagh, arrested at the whim of an RUC man—will one day forgive the Minister for introducing this legislation. The Irish people have always been divided by the British. Henry Grattan once headed a deputation to Pitt, when Pitt was Prime Minister of England, to secure British aid in removing the causes of religious dissention. Pitt interrupted Grattan with an illuminating phrase: “Aye, but whose will the Irish people be if they ever come together?” That has been the inspiration——

Mr. McCartin: You did not do much to bring them together all day.

Mr. McGlinchey: Senator McCartin believes that this legislation will deal only with murderers, with people who are shot in the knees. Obviously his master's voice has told Senator McCartin that and he has accepted it. The day will come when the Senator will have to read the small print in the legislation: “Whose will the Irish people be?” That has been the inspiration behind Britain's Irish policy from Pitt's day to the present: “Keep the Irish people in conflict with one another. Do not remove, rather multiply, the causes of dissension. They will escape from British exploitation if ever they come together.” Britain's latest attempt to divide the Irish people is a successful persuasion of a national Coalition Government to introduce the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill. Senator McCartin suggested that if it were found that this Bill was unconstitutional, we should change the Constitution. His party changed the Constitution before.

Mr. McCartin: You claim jurisdiction over the people in the Six Counties and yet you want to see them being murdered and harbour the murderers.

Mr. McGlinchey: I do not want to see them being murdered. That is a lie and Senator McCartin knows it. Sena-4th [841] day of October in 1968 when the Gael Party want to say that we are in favour of murder. We are not in favour of murder. We are opposed to innocent people being exploited. He knows perfectly well that nobody in Fianna Fáil or indeed no person in this country is in favour of murder. I resent very much——

(Interruptions.)

An Cathaoirleach: The Chair wishes to hear Senator McGlinchey address himself to the Bill and wishes to hear that speech made without interruption.

Mr. McGlinchey: Senator McCartin suggested that if this Bill proves to be unconstitutional we should change the Constitution. One can see in the wording of the Sunningdale Agreement Britain's preparation for this Bill, which Britain has imposed on the Coalition leaders. One could see in the wording of the Treaty Britain's preparation for the Constitution afterwards imposed on Free State leaders. On 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th December, 1973, a discussion took place in Sunningdale between the Irish and British Governments and the parties involved in the Six-County Executive designate. Following the Sunningdale Agreement on the last day the Taoiseach issued a statement, and he said:

The agreement which we have reached to establish a Council of Ireland is of primary importance, because such a Council can establish trust between both parts of the island and with all sections of the Irish people.

Notice taken that 12 Members were not present; House counted and 12 Members being present,

Mr. Daly: On a point of information, in view of the recitation of waffle that we have listened to here today, we would not be human on this side of the House if it did not turn our stomachs.

Mr. Halligan: That is no excuse for a bad speech.

Mr. Yeats: We would like you to learn about it.

[842] Mr. W. Ryan: I would like to inform Senator Daly who has been here for only a few hours that we have only 15 Senators on this side of the House and there are over 30 on the other side. Surely the least they could do would be to keep a House.

Mr. Killilea: On a point of order, it is their business to keep a House.

An Cathaoirleach: None of the Senators is rising on a point of order. I now call on Senator McGlinchey to resume.

Mr. McGlinchey: When Senator Daly has been here for a short time he will learn that it is the responsibility of the Government parties to provide a quorum.

I was reading a statement issued by the Taoiseach after Sunningdale. Perhaps when the Government supporters discovered I was reading this statement, they blushed and fled from the room because they did not want to be reminded of what the Taoiseach said at Sunningdale. I will read from his statement:

As you will see from the statement we have agreed that the Council should consist of representatives of the two parts of Ireland. There will be no British representation on the Council.

The Council will comprise of a Council of Ministers with executive, harmonising and consultative functions and a Council Assembly with advisory and review functions. The Council would act on the basis of unanimity and would have an equal number of Ministers from the Irish Government and the Northern Ireland Executive. Under the Council there will be a secretariat headed by a Secretary General....

It has been agreed that the revenue of the Council should, initially, be provided by way of grants from the two administrations North and South. Studies are to be undertaken of the possible methods of financing which will be adopted thereafter.

A few paragraphs later he also says:

[843] The British Government committed itself again at the Conference to bring detention for all sections of the community in Northern Ireland to an end as soon as the security situation permits. The British Government also expressed the hope that a number of detainees might be released before Christmas.

The Taoiseach continued:

...The members of that newly appointed Executive will take office and together with representatives of the two Governments will attend early in the New Year the formal stage of this Conference. At that stage all of those taking part will sign an Agreement formally confirming all of these provisions, and this Agreement will be registered at the United Nations by the two sovereign Governments concerned....

There are no winners and no losers here at Sunningdale today. We reached accommodation with one another on many practical issues.

Mr. M.J. O'Higgins: Does the Senator see the effect he is having on Senator Yeats?

Mr. McGlinchey: He continued:

But none of us has compromised; and no one has asked any of the others to compromise on basic aspiration.

Mr. Killilea: Is Senator O'Higgins preparing the guillotine?

Mr. McGlinchey: To continue with the Taoiseach's statement:

We have done well, working together, to establish the structures of the Council of Ireland and to attribute functions to it. But there is something more important even than structures and functions: that is the purpose for which the Council was set up, and which it must serve. That purpose is to build up steadily a spirit of greater confidence and better understanding between the different sections and historical traditions in Ireland. We [844] pledge ourselves to build up such a spirit.

These were some quotations from the Taoiseach's statement after the Sunningdale Conference. One worth noting is:

The British Government committed itself again at the Conference to bringing detention for all sections of the community in Northern Ireland to an end as soon as the security situation permits.

It is quite true that the British Government lived up to part of that commitment. It is also true that they released every single Loyalist detained in Long Kesh. Today, there is not one single Loyalist in Long Kesh, but there are over 300 Catholics. Once again the British Government have demonstrated what they have been demonstrating for 810 years since they first landed here, their concern for one section of the community. When this Government agreed to the Sunningdale pact they did so on the assumption that the British Government would live up to their commitments. But one has only to read our history to realise that the British Government never lived up to an agreement as far as this country is concerned.

One has only to study the Taoiseach's statement after Sunningdale to realise that the Irish people have been conned again. He stated that there are no winners and no losers here at Sunningdale. He must now realise that that statement was inaccurate. This country was the loser at Sunningdale. The British Government, the Unionists, the Loyalists, call them what you like, and the paramilitary groups were the winners, because the only part of the Sunningdale package left is the Criminal Law (Jurisdiction) Bill. The Council of Ireland is gone. The commitment about internment is gone. Yet this Government insist on proceeding with this legislation despite the fact that they must know they have been let down by the British. They must now realise that the Taoiseach, while he felt he was right when making the statement after Sunningdale, was very [845] wrong in claiming that there were no winners and no losers. We have only one means left.

The British kept their promise about internment in that they released all the Loyalists, but they did not keep their promise to release the Catholics. Despite the fact that this Government must know in their hearts that they were conned at Sunningdale, they are carrying out the only clause the British really wanted. As far as the British Government were concerned, Sunningdale was set up to persuade this Government to introduce this Bill. Here history is repeating itself. We do not seem to be able to learn from the lessons of history because this Government are doing with the British exactly what those who went before them did, a little over 50 years ago. One can compare line for line, move for move, the Sunningdale approach and the approach to the Treaty in 1922.

An Cathaoirleach: In case the Senator is interested, the Chair will not allow it to be compared line by line. The Senator is entitled to make a passing reference to events in the past that are relevant to the Bill, but not to dwell on them.

Mr. McGlinchey: According to the British plan, vital clauses in the Treaty were capable of being interpreted one way by the British signatories and another way by the Irish signatories. To induce them to sign the Treaty, as they induced them to sign the Sunningdale Agreement, the British privately told Michael Collins and Arthur Griffith that the vital clauses in the Treaty meant what Collins and Griffith thought they meant—that the Treaty freed Ireland, made their people sovereign, gave the Irish people control over their national destiny, spelt the end of dismemberment into two States, and terminated British domination of this country. The Irish people interpreted the Sunningdale Agreement differently from the way it was presented to us today.

On the 6th February, 1922, Michael Collins wrote that “Ireland under the Treaty, is about to become a fully [846] constituted nation; the whole of Ireland as one nation is to compose the Irish Free State.”

An Cathaoirleach: The Chair has to intervene again to indicate that these references appear to be too wide and too detailed to be relevant to the Bill.

Mr. McGlinchey: I am——

Mr. M.J. O'Higgins: I suggest that the source of the quotations be given.

Mr. McGlinchey: Michael Collins is my source.

Mr. M.J. O'Higgins: From what source is the Senator quoting?

Mr. McGlinchey: I am quoting from Michael Collins.

Mr. Killilea: Is that good enough for the Leader of the House?

Mr. M.J. O'Higgins: The Senator knows precisely what I mean. As far as I understand him, he purports to be quoting from a document.

Mr. McGlinchey: I was trying to establish—I felt that I was within my rights though I naturally bow to the Chair—that history is repeating itself here and that the mistakes made in 1921-22 with the British should not be made again. The system adopted by the British in 1922 was exactly the same as that adopted when they brought the Taoiseach, his Ministers and Leaders of the Six Counties Executive to Sunningdale. In my view, I am entitled to request the indulgence of the Chair to allow me to give the examples and comparisons of the events of today and the events of 50 years ago.

An Cathaoirleach: The Senator has already declared his intention of bowing to the Chair's ruling. The bow has been very slight up to now. He has merely repeated his previous argument, adding repetition to irrelevancy.

Mr. McGlinchey: In justice——

Mr. Cooney: Does the Senator expect to finish tonight?

Mr. McGlinchey: No.

[847] Mr. Cooney: With your permission, a Cathaoirleach, I wish to be excused.

Mr. Killilea: Is it right for the Minister to walk out when a Senator is contributing to a Bill introduced by the Minister? What should the House do in that case?

An Cathaoirleach: The Minister has a constitutional right to attend this House and to be heard. There is no power under the Constitution or Standing Orders of this House to compel a Minister to attend a debate.

Mr. Yeats: We appreciate that very much and also that you have no control over this matter. But in the 17 years I have been in the Seanad, I have never seen a situation where a Minister walked out on a discussion on a Bill of this nature. This is an extremely important Bill. In view of the fact that we are supposed to continue discussing it, and the deliberate ostentatious absence of the Minister who obviously does not intend to return, all I can suggest is that we adjourn until tomorrow morning.

An Cathaoirleach: I take it Senator Yeats is rising on a point of order to propose the adjournment of the House.

Debate adjourned.