Not a single person has ever been prosecuted in connection with any of the cross-border bombings. Indeed, an official silence was mantained about the events until the early 1990s.
Over the years the bereaved and injured came to question:
- The complicity of British state forces in Northern Ireland in the bombings.
- The actions of the Irish state in pursuing those responsible.
- The integrity of the RUC investigations.
- The integrity of the Garda investigations.
Our campaign led to the establishment of two private, non-judicial, inquiries by the Irish Government. These resulted in:
- The Barron Report (2003) into the Dublin & Monaghan bombings.
- The Second
Barron Report (2004) into the '72 & '73 Dublin bombings (and
View RTE News coverage of this report: News Report 1 & News Report 2 (You need RealPlayer to run them).
- The Fourth Barron Report. (July 2006) into the Dundalk and Castleblayney bombings.
- The MacEntee Report (2007) of the Commission of Investigation into the Dublin & Monaghan bombings.
All reports reveal a significant amount of disturbing information.
The MacEntee Report highlighted the huge amounts of relevant documentation that have gone missing from the Garda files and the fact that it is impossible to determine whether further documentation may also be missing due to massive failures in the Garda document management system of the time.
It is therefore impossible to ascertain with any degree of certainty from Garda records why the Garda investigation into the Dublin and Monaghan bombings was wound down less than three months after the bombings. Serious questions thus remain regarding the investigation.
Most disturbingly however, it was acknowledged by the authors in all the inquiries that they had been significantly restricted in their investigations by the non-cooperation of the British authorities.
Without accessing crucial documents held by these authorities, deeply worrying questions remain unanswered for the victims of the Dublin and Monaghan bombings, for victims of other collusion-related incidents and for the citizens of both states.
British state collusion with loyalist paramilitary organisations has been well documented in several high profile cases from the late eighties such as the murder of the human rights lawyer, Mr. Pat Finucane, and the killing of Raymond McCord.
Justice for the Forgotten believes there is compelling evidence that collusion occurred in the perpetration of many other appalling atrocities across the island of Ireland including the Dublin and Monaghan bombings.
(For just one example of such evidence, view the following, recently released, Ministry of Defence document. This document discloses the fact that there was knowledge -at the highest British political and military levels - of subversion in the UDR, as early as 1973.)
We continue to be involved in joint research with the Pat Finucane Centre in our efforts to establish the truth. This is as a result of a long-standing mutual interest in a group of security force members and Loyalists who operated out of a farm at Glenanne, Co. Armagh.
This group, which included members of the RUC, UDR and British Army intelligence, as well as Loyalist paramilitaries from Counties Armagh and Tyrone, was responsible for over 100 murders in a series of gun and bomb attacks on both sides of the Border throughout the 1970s.
There is significant evidence (for more, see our Publications page) that this loose grouping operated as a semi-official death squad at the behest of certain British state agencies, and further, that it was instrumental in carrying out the Dublin and Monaghan bombings and many other atrocities across the Republic of Ireland.
We are continuing to campaign for the establishment of a mechanism that can persuade the British Government to provide us with the documentary information - currently being withheld - that can carry these investigations further. Such a mechanism must be able to accommodate the additional problem of cross-jurisdiction.
Without co-operation from the British Government enabling us to access vital information, the question of who was culpable for so many murders remains, and will remain, unanswered.
As a consequence of the January 2008 Dáil debate on collusion, we worked with members of all parties to ensure the passage of a motion endorsing the Barron Reports. This motion was approved by the Dáil in July 2008, which calls on the British government to release all documents, relating to the atrocities that occured in this jurisdiction, to an independent, international judicial figure.
for the Forgotten is a project of the Pat Finucane Centre