Crisis In Historical Enquiries Team Probe Of NI’s Past Shows Need For A Fresh Start And An End To Boston College Probe

Statement from Ed Moloney & Anthony McIntyre on the failures of the Historical Enquiries Team (HET)

Following the decision by the Policing Board of Northern Ireland to suspend all reviews by the HET of military cases and in light of the board’s expression of no confidence in the leadership of the HET on foot of a damning report by the British Inspectorate of Constabulary into the HET’s performance, we call upon the British authorities to immediately suspend the ongoing PSNI investigation resulting from the subpoenas served on Boston College.

We also urge both the US and British governments to immediately withdraw the subpoenas served against Boston College’s Belfast Archive.

It is clear from the HMIC report, from the rigorous investigations carried out by Dr Patricia Lundy, from our own examination of the HET’s record and from the response of public and politicians to this crisis that there is no confidence in the way the British authorities are dealing with the sensitive and all important issue of Northern Ireland’s troubled past.

The way the authorities have invested so much time and money pursuing the Boston archives is in stark contrast to the slipshod and half-hearted efforts that the HET has put into investigating state sponsored violence, especially killings carried out by the British Army. This, we believe, is symptomatic of the double standards that have infected the HET-based approach to dealing with the past.

We urge the British and Irish governments to suspend all criminal and non-criminal inquiries into the past until agreement has been reached by all parties on a credible way forward and a mechanism to deal with the past has been created in such a way that it commands widespread confidence and support.


  1. Double standards! a nice way of saying genocide,I cant see in this lifetime any mechanism or credible way forward in dealing with the past the protagonists,all of them have to much to hide,the BC tapes scandal is not about evidence gathering or any form of justice for Jean Mc Conville,but more about control and who says what.

  2. Amazing, but not surprising, at the same time members of the RUC/PSNI are going over to the States to collect the 11 interviews/tapes, the Daily Mail has been able to print part of them already..
    Maybe some good will come out with the release of the tapes...(the contents will be drip fed to the media in full over the next few months)..Just maybe it'll be the catalyst or the straw that breaks the camels back and a real T&R process is set up..
    I personally still want dust to take care of the tapes but I'm looking for the positives in a bad situtation..

  3. Frankie,

    they got the Price tapes but nothing else yet.

  4. Frankie- " the Daily Mail has been able to print part of them already."

    I would bet my bottom dollar that since the Daily Mail only implied that the excerpts from Dolours were from Boston College and didn't state expressly that they were it means they are in fact excerpts from a separate interview from somewhere else.

    The Daily Mail like the for example are partial to make implications and non-sequiturs that lead the reader up the garden path. Perhaps Anthony or someone else can say whether I am right or not about the link in your post.

  5. Simon,

    I suppose we will just have to wait. Although I see little wrong in what you say.

  6. If Gerry Adams wasn't in the IRA as he claims; then why did he give interviews in the Behind the mask documentary...?

    If he wasn't in the IRA then he had no mask to speak from behind....