The Blanket

Setting the Record Straight
 
Anthony McIntyre • Irish Times 12/06/2003

 

I refer to an interview with Freddie Scappaticci in The Andersonstown News which you reproduced in full last Tuesday, in which Mr Scappaticci is quoted as saying, in the context of the allegations that he was the IRA double agent, 'Stakeknife', that I had alleged that he had helped to direct the peace process.

While I never expected a publication of the sort that The Andersonstown News is, to have the courtesy or professionalism to ask for my comment on this allegation, I certainly expected a bona fide newspaper like yours to do so before it was published. I would therefore be glad of the opportunity to put my side on the record.

Not only did I never say that Mr Scappaticci had directed the peace process, I never even claimed that he was 'Stakeknife'. In every media interview and public comment that I made about this affair, I always made it very clear that I did not know who 'Stakeknife' was or is, much less that he was Mr Scappaticci.

Nor did I ever say that 'Stakeknife' had helped to direct the peace process. What I did say was that 'Stakeknife's' activities had helped to push the Republican movement towards the peace process, either by removing those who were opposed to the strategy or by so undermining the IRA's military campaign that Sinn Fein and the IRA were left with little alternative but to embrace the strategy constructed by Gerry Adams and his allies.

Like the Sinn Fein leadership, The Andersonstown News and Freddie Scappaticci twisted what I actually said into a very different allegation, one that is much easier to deny. Everybody involved in Republicanism over the past decade or so knows that the peace process strategy was put together and directed at a much higher level than that ever reached by Mr Scappaticci, even when he was active in what he now calls "the Republican movement". I suspect the real reason that my words were twisted is that the real allegation is so much difficult to rebut.

Yours etc

Anthony McIntyre

 

 

 

 

 

 

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