HET-The Loyalist Witch Hunt.

Over the weekend I read–as I always do–the latest updates on Anthony McIntyre’s site–The Pensive Quill.  For the uninitiated TPQ is a personal blog which mostly–but not exclusively–promotes Anthony’s own brand of Republicanism.  Since I first starting reading it–following on from The Blanket–I have to say that I have always found it informative, entertaining and very educational.


  Anthony himself can be very scathing of what he sees as the sell out merchants of the present day Sinn Fein and its style of republicanism.  He can be disparaging not just to the entity that is Sinn Fein but also the personalities who call the tune for that particular band.  TPQ is littered with brilliant articles from many contributors–articles that have given me a great deal of pleasure in reading.  Like all similar type sites TPQ allows you to comment on the written pieces.  Well, apart from Danny Morrisons blog page where the right to comment no longer exists.  But where comments are allowed you run the risk of attracting not just the articulate or the genuinely concerned but also the abusive and downright ignorant.  And this is what I found in regard to an article on TPQ yesterday.  The piece in question was a short message advertising a Welcome Home party in Dugannon next week for Gerry McGeough.  McGeough, of course is due for release after serving 2 years of an imposed 20 year sentence for his involvement in the attempted murder of a UDR man in 1981.  McGeough was arrested and sentenced after the intervention of the Historical Enquiries Team in 2010/11. At time of writing the vast majority of cases being investigated by the HET are against Loyalists–over 90%.  Two of the people who made comments in relation to the Helen McClafferty piece on McGeough’s party show their ignorance, bigotry and hatred of all things Protestant.  Itsjustmacker–not his real name–welcomes the release of Gerry the hero and then goes on to say that in the case of a Loyalist who is on trial at present for a killing dating back 40 years, because the judge declares that some fingerprint evidence is only circumstantial, the system is loaded against republicans!!  Marty–this may be his real name–eloquently describes the loyalist currently on trial as ” a fucking bigoted murdering bastard” and continues by offering an open threat–”I hope we meet up some day”.  Both of these regular contributors to TPQ are seriously deluded to think that the HET campaign is a one way system directed at republicans.  I dont think these two actually believe that which leads me to think that their comments are spurred by naked sectarianism.  I dont attach any blame to Anthony McIntyre here as he has the right to allow any comments he likes.  But I would be interested to hear his own views on the comments and more importantly on the HET.  Does he feel that it is okay for Loyalists to be hounded for 40 year old cases but that republicans shouldn’t.  Strangely the HET issue is one that hasn’t attracted too much comment from republicans–no matter what branch they now represent.


3 Responses to HET-The Loyalist Witch Hunt.

  1. South Belfast

    Hi Compound,
    I also read TPQ and I too find it informative. However, as much as I agree with you that Mr McIntyre should respond to your questions I totally reject the fact that Mr McIntyre is at fault. Surely if those comments were made on social media sites they would be reported and closed because not only is it derogatory but it is threatening. He really needs to monitor his blog as many people who contribute articles to his page I’m sure would not want to be associated with those foul mouthed, ill reared scum. The difficulty is he cannot be contacted as I have tried on numerous occasions to address some matters but i never passed the interview. I hope he also reads this site and can respond.


  2. Compound & South Belfast..

    Anthony did answer the question..He said this in reply to Tims question about the HET.
    On the question of the HET, I am opposed to any post conflict prosecutions for conflict activity. I think this applies equally to loyalists, British state forces and republicans. I think truth recovery is important but it has to be uncoupled from prosecutions otherwise it is self defeating and skewed.

    I think he cleared the HET question up…

    As for your points about it’sjustmackers and marty. They aren’t sectarian in any shape or form (I’ve never met either but I read their posts)..What I’ve noticed from the first time I read The blanket there is a debate going on within irish republicans both publcly and privately and they (like the PUL community) use phrases with no direct offence meant to anyone, They are more vocal in their criticism towards SF than any other political party or group. Instead of getting into a tit for tat, war of words…why don’t you try this angle..

    Recently within the TPQ (and here on the prison life section, both republicans and loyalists have fought on the same side, for the same reasons against the same common enemy..Namely the British..
    eg..The relief riots of the 1930′s where protestants from the Shankill helped their working class catholics neighbours fight the Brtish or the humanity both Joe McCann showed by releasing 3 UVF volunteers ( well they were working class like yourself, how could you shoot them)..or the letter Gutsy Spence wroye to Joes wife..or the examples both Stephen Fergenson and Anthony McIntyre gave about loyalists helping republicans…and vice versa..

    There is more to unite that seperate…And they are the same working class issues. Some OAP, single mother, families with long term unemployment on the Sandy Row or Falls Rd have the very same concerns every night when they go to bed..Do I have enough money to buy wee Johnny a new pair of shoes, do I heat the house, cook an extra meal or pay the rent…

  3. The link for the blanket can be found here (sorry about 1st link..