Vengeful And Violent

Mick Hall writes that:

Unlike Gerry Adam's, Martin McGuinness could be vengeful and seek violent retribution upon those who crossed him.

Now Martin McGuinness is resting in his grave I have decided to reblog a piece we published here a few years ago. Why? Because I believe it's important we get a rounded view of imported people if we are to accurately assess their contribution. When this is not done you end up with someone like Clive of India being lorded in school books when in reality he was a psychopathic thief and killer.

Martin was undoubtedly a brave and resourceful solder and an extremely able politician and in the long term I have no doubt history will judge him kindly. However like all human beings he also had feet of clay.

I have often wondered why those Irish republicans who opposed their former comrades decision to sign the Good Friday Agreement concentrate their fire on Gerry Adams, while giving Martin McGuinness a free ride. Not least because whilst Adams may have his faults, he is not known for inflicting violent retribution upon those who cross him, or disagree with his strategic decisions. He has enough confidence in his own ability to win the argument by internal debate and bureaucratic manoeuvre to have to silence his critics in a violent way.

The same cannot be said for Mr McGuinness who was known for his unforgiving nature, and a history of using the ultimate sanction against anyone who threatens his reputation.

However it is more than this alone which made me decide to republish the article below, for unlike Gerry Adams, McGuinness seems to have relished being a senior figure in the Stormont six county government which no matter which way you come at it gives its allegiance to the British crown.

Something which would have been unthinkable to previous generations of Irish Republicans and to McGuinness himself in his younger days.

Whereas Gerry Adams always viewed participating in the north's regional administration as a necessary evil if Sinn Féin was to become a major player in the north and the 26 county Republic of Ireland, McGuinness seems to have relished being first deputy minister and the pomp and privileges that position bestowed on its holder.

The article linked below covers an attack on the family home of Derry Republicans Mickey and Martina Donnelly. Mickey was the man who recruited McGuinness into the (Provisional) IRA. He was also one of 'The 'Hooded Men' who were tortured in 1971 by the British army, and the last prisoner released after internment without trial was 'officially' ended in the 1970s.

He is no saint, in 1986 he was among those who walked out of Sinn Féin's Ard-Fheis after the party voted to end its policy of abstentionism in the Irish 'Republic.' Something I profoundly agreed with as ending abstention in the south was one of the best decisions the Adams leadership ever made as it was the first of many steps in ending their war.

Nevertheless one would have thought Donnelly's years of working alongside McGuinness in the IRA would have protected him from the vengeful attack he and his family experienced in 1998. But it seems not, and here the first deputy minister again differs from Adams. For the latter had no greater friend and comrade, and later no greater foe than the late Brendan Hughes, and while his underlings may have besmirched Brendan's reputation, all to no avail I might add as he was not the type of revolutionary who could be silenced, actual physical violence against a former comrade were not Gerry Adams style. And at Brendan's funeral he helped shoulder his coffin gloves and beret.

Up until his death, little happened within the working class nationalist communities of Derry without McGuinness's knowing about it. When members of the PIRA went to the home of the Donnelly's and their children in 1989 they were undoubtedly on an errand for Mr McGuinness.

A recent photo of the surviving members of The Hooded Men, Mickey Donnelly is on the far left with the bushy beard.

Martina Donnelly

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Anthony McIntyre

Former IRA prisoner, spent 18 years in Long Kesh. Free Speech advocate, writer, historian, humanist, and researcher.

8 comments to ''Vengeful And Violent"

  1. Mick,

    Donal De Barra would contest that claim that Mickey Donnelly recruited McGuinness into the Provos. Maybe they were both together? Or maybe they each recruited him into different IRA's?
    I seem to remember Donal claiming live on air on RTE that he had recruited him.

    Finally and perhaps more importantly, who told you Gerry Adams couldn't be vengeful???

  2. Who said and in what context and could your elaborate?

    'Martin was undoubtedly a brave and resourceful solder and an extremely able politician and in the long term I have no doubt history will judge him kindly. However like all human beings he also had feet of clay.'

  3. JQ:In the Johnston Clarke book,there was a good story of MMG jumping on the back of horse (bareback) in a field to escape a BA patrol he was planning to attack. I thought that a wonderful image, even if the rest of the book was not complimentary to him.

  4. Daithi D that is not how I heard the version of Martybroy and the horse story Dixie or Micky Gallagher will have the proper side of this story ,

  5. Martybroy a fearless and resourceful soldier ,yeah could this be because he was untouchable ?his military achievements don't amount to a hill of bean , his political career ended in abysmal failure as per his own words "the DUP made fools of us for the last 10 years " what a fucking waste of any historians pen ,except in the treachery category

  6. Like develara and the others mc'guinness was almost certainly a member of mi5

  7. James

    Firstly being an able politician is not a compliment, just as the likes Stalin and Thatcher were able politicians, but complete arseholes to boot. I would add it was his political abilities which in all probability allowed him to help manipulate an army convention. There is more than enough evidence to suggest McG was a brave and resourceful solder in the early days, if you know other wise please post it up. As to history judging him kindly; the victor gets to writes the history. The only way this will change as far as McG is concerned is if and when partition ends.


  8. We were marched up a hill to jail or death and mmg or adams did not suffer too much at quote lions led by donkeys or young men fighting and dying for lies


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