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Yoho I'm a Provo! or the Never Ending Sunday Shell Smear

category mayo | arts and media | feature author Tuesday October 10, 2006 17:58author by Terry - Rossport Solidarity Camp Report this post to the editors

featured image
To people who build their careers
on manipulation it must seem that ordinary people
cannot rise up of their own volition.
The main article on Shell to Sea this weekend was a repeat of Paul Williams earlier story in the Sunday World last weekend. These stories concerned Provo intimidation. This is likely to be a recurring theme so it is examined in detail in this article. Shell to Sea was also smeared by the Sunday Times (again) and Saturday’s Mail. The Mail gave positive coverage earlier in the week. There were decent pieces in the Irish Times and in Village. This article just looks at the negative coverage.

Sunday World

Paul Williams, employee of Tony O’Reilly (owner of an oil and gas exploration company), starts off with allegations from an unnamed group and unnamed spokesperson of people “directly affected by the Corrib gas pipeline controversy” alleging “widespread intimidation” by Shell to Sea thugs.

It is not known if people “directly affected” include the owner, along with Exxon-Mobil, of oil and gas fields off the coast of Clare, aka Tony O’Reilly. There is no named person citing direct experience of intimidation with names, dates, and places, thus it is utterly meaningless. No charges have been brought although the first story alleging this, was, to my knowledge, in July 2005. The intimidation is linked to Sinn Fein and republicans.

Related Stories of Media Manipulation: Anonymous smear campaign aimed at undermining the right to protest | The Empire Strike Back! - White House & Indo Sic on to the Acquitted Ploughshares | What Is The Sindo and The Rest of O'Reilly's Empire Doing?

Allegations of Necromancy.

An unnamed “friend of the family” of Gerry Coyle, Fine Gael councillor, supporter of Shell’s project, and owner of a Statoil station, alleges that a man “with a ‘strong Northern accent‘” intimidated Coyle. Clearly with that accent the only question is Provisional, Continuity, Real or I.N.L.A.?
At this point things turn a little strange. An unnamed source mentions threats of war of independence “flying columns” returning to Mayo to “fight those who supported the controversial gas pipeline.”.

The prospect of long dead trench-coated corpses rising "Dawn of the Dead" style to stalk the boreens of Erris is a scary one. I always thought the place was more ‘The Wickerman’ than ‘Zombie Flesh Eaters’ though. I suggest this “friend of the family” spend more time in daylight. The article cites a picket of Coyle’s business neglecting to mention it is a Statoil station - and such have been picketed across Ireland as Statoil is a junior partner in the project.

Protect Erris from Greedy Gombeens.

The article quotes Coyle, Hannick of the Council for the West, and ex-councillor Paddy Cosgrove. This is nothing new. It has long been the case the some clergy, a few businessmen, IBEC west, the Council for the West, Fianna Fail, Fine Gael, and local Chambers of Commerce - the local establishment essentially - have been supporters of Shell. For instance the Bishop of Killala and the then parish priest of Kilcommon went out to bless the rig years ago. For a long time the project has been facilitated by a sort of indigenous fifth column. It shouldn’t be surprising, in the 1970s local clergy and Mayo Fianna Fail lobbied to have a nuclear power plant built in Erris before Carnsore got chosen instead.

Sinn Fein or good protesters and bad protesters.

Cosgrove alleges “the campaign has been hijacked by Sinn Fein” and that “lots of protesters don’t realise that they are being used as pawns in a bigger game”, according to Hannick “there is a core group of decent people involved in the protest campaign but it has been hijacked and manipulated by Sinn Fein and others”.

To people who build their careers on manipulation, and whose positions are based on hierarchy, it must seem that ordinary people cannot rise up of their own volition, there must be a sinister mastermind or conspiracy. Moreover, if society is just, protests such as we have seen in Erris cannot be based on genuine grievance, they must be contrived by some subversive element (Jews, Cuba, Trotskyists, etc..).

This also has shades of good protester/bad protester. That is where you offer the moderates a few crumbs - an ear to power, less heavy policing, less media slander, and isolate and attack the radicals. Though in this case Sinn Fein are generally more in the moderate camp.

Mostly, however, this is simply calculated. They have to have something to justify the police presence. Hence intimidation and dark stories about republicans. The truth of the matter is that Erris, much like the rest of rural Ireland outside the border counties and Kerry, has lashings of deep green Fianna Fail/Wolfe Tones nationalism and very little in way of Sinn Fein organisation. Williams refers to two local members of Sinn Fein, and they are also the only ones I have ever met after being involved in this campaign heavily for over a year and a half and living in the area for almost a year and a half. So this is fantasy.

Not to say that it would somehow be illegitimate if there were more members of Sinn Fein in the area to be involved in the campaign. On Shell’s first direct attempt to get in the gates of the refinery site, they actually invited the media to be present, presumably in the hope of clashes. Having not been given that they are left with fantasy stories.

Williams is even better when he gets to the national campaign: “It has also emerged that Sinn Fein has taken direct control of all protests against Shell outside Mayo”. Emerged from your imagination perhaps?

The truth is all left groups, and many non aligned individuals are involved in the campaign, including Sinn Fein, who have played a largely positive role. Given that significant parts of the left have little sympathy for republicanism, and I include myself in those parts, we would hardly be marshalled into a Sinn Fein front. The fact of the matter is the campaign could do with more participation from Sinn Fein, from republicans of any other hue, or from just about anyone else thank you very much. The campaign isn’t run by any party or anybody, each local group is autonomous and there are open meetings.

Finally, it is criminally irresponsible of Williams to suggest that the national campaign is a creature of Sinn Fein when that campaign operates in Northern Ireland and when loyalist paramilitaries are still active there. The evidence that Williams produces is that “tickets for protest marches and meetings are being sold to ‘raise funds’ at Sinn Fein’s headquarters in Dublin”.

Yes Shell to Sea does use those premises. Though there is no such thing as a ticket for a protest march - we are not the first campaign in human history to run protests as ticket only events! We have also used the premises in Dublin of several environmental/conservation NGOs, the libertarian-left, the Communist Party of Ireland, and the ITGWU for meetings or to sell literature or to raise sponsorship.

Williams would do better to ask why it is that a rural community of Fianna Fail and Fine Gael voters in the wilds of Mayo (where Labour gets about 2% of the vote) has to turn to the left for support. Shell to Sea should resist any attempt to divide it along republican/anti-republican lines, or to witch hunt the republicans in its ranks.

The Sunday World also carried a full page add from Shell responding to the Shell to Sea campaign (again the add did not have the Shell logo).

The Sunday Times

“Shell to Sea leader receives a poor school report” The angle of The Sunday Times on the week that saw the biggest policing operation in Connaught in well …a long time was …wait for it… Maura Harrington’s record as a school principal aka base character assassination. Maura is also accused of being a “Shell to Sea leader”, when we don’t have any.

The article goes on to quote Sean Hannick and Paddy Cosgrove and ’unnamed sources’, much like a smaller version of the Williams piece. The Sunday Times grants Shell to Sea even greater powers of harassment than the Sunday World does though, apparently we are “harassing” Shell, those well known poor innocent victims.

This article attempts to counterpose Maura Harrington’s statement that she knows of no incident of harassment with Micheal O’Seighin’s statement that the Garda were attempting to provoke trouble, which doesn’t make sense. The overall impression of the Sunday Times piece is that there is a conflict in Mayo between two sets of natives, Shell gets the barest mention. The article refers to the “offshore Erris oilfield”, do they know something we don’t?

There was also a opinion piece from Liam Fay, entitled ’Corrib gas protesters are walking all over the supine Garda’. This is focused on “the rule of law”. Liam Fay’s earlier journalistic incarnation involved the really wadical activity of taking the piss out of the Catholic Church. Fay’s argument is "it’s legal so it’s right so it is". I remember Hot Press, Fay’s previous bolt hole, used to make a great song and dance about laws restricting sexual activity or drug use in conservative Ireland. While such can be of great importance to individual peoples’ lives, it is pretty marginal, indeed irrelevant, to the running of capitalism, nice to see that liberals, true to every prediction, know what side their bread is buttered when it comes to matters important to the economy.

The Mail

Saturday’s Mail was much like the Sunday World article. Another article on indymedia.ie already addresses it.

An interesting difference between it and the Williams piece is that it counterposes the campaign against pylons in Bantry with the Shell to Sea campaign. The first being genuine and “wholly supported by residents in the area” (including the developer who lives in Bantry?), and the other not. The article claims support in its stance from Bantry campaigners who visited Rossport and Ballinaboy. Here is an Indymedia report from that visit for a contrasting view. There was also a small mention in the Mail on Sunday with Waghorne blaming Shell to Sea for tying up Garda resources.

The News of the World

This paper gave equal space to opinion pieces from Shell to Sea’s Mark Garavan and Shell’s Terry Nolan.


That was all I saw in Saturday’s and Sunday’s papers. In terms of both physical space and readership that is overwhelmingly a media hostile to Shell to Sea. The story is also not being covered to any great extent.

Obviously in the 2005 to the first half of 2006 period they (the ruling class as a whole) saw something popular with some genuine concerns that could be appeased with a few crumbs and that having failed they have changed tack. We can expect nothing more than robust policing and a hostile media in the future, but this is in line with previous predictions. It should also be noted that these current set of smear stories are independent of anything engaged in by the Shell to Sea campaign. In other words it doesn’t have a media friendly image to lose at the moment and hasn’t done anything to lose it.

Related Link: http://www.struggle.ws/rsc/
author by Mick Butler - CFSDpublication date Tue Oct 10, 2006 19:10author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The "different station, different nation" ! as it brands itself , withdraws coverage of events in North Mayo.
Brendan O' Brien, broadcaster at Newstalk, announced today that the station, (principally owened by tax exile Denis O'Brien) would cover events in north Mayo on its lunctime programme. We waited and waited to hear about the plight of our fellow citizens in the west. At 1.40 a phone call to the station elicited the information that the piece was not going to be covered by the show after all. The reason given was that the new "ethics legislation" announced by Ahern and McDowell required coverage instead. The station continued with it's coverage of alcohol problems and other items without alteration.

This follows last weeks wholly one sided coverage (ie Shell side) by George Hook and Brenda Power's earlier relaying of a number of phone messages on her morning show, "your call" before news at mid day ,all pro Shell comments. Several people phoned her show including yours truly and lodged comments critical of the "deal" and contrasting same with the Norwegian situation. The calls were noted but were not read out on air.

It is no surprise that Dunphy was not kept on by the station, no raving radical, he did however call it as he saw it, especially so in relation to the Shell "deal".

author by supppublication date Tue Oct 10, 2006 19:26author address author phone Report this post to the editors


AIlbhe describes how there was ugly scenes of sitting yesterday. haha.

Gardai describe a new level of aggression.

All they did was sit and resist.

Cathal O' seemed very confused about the questions he was asking Paddy C.

PC said the pipe from Bellanboy to Galway goes passed their gables of some and they had no porblem is that the production line or is Paddy Cosgrove (FF) confusing the issue again?

Although we still don't know where the pipeline is going, what is happening with the that and Mayo Council and the reluctant landowners etc.

author by Terry - RSC/S2Spublication date Tue Oct 10, 2006 19:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Re: O'Reilly and oil and gas this is a link to an article which covers more of that:

author by Davidpublication date Wed Oct 11, 2006 13:51author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Shell To Sea spokesperson was on the show today.

author by PMpublication date Wed Oct 11, 2006 14:50author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The fact that your calls were not cover3ed meerly points to the fact that they were not in sufficient quantity to erit it. I think it demonstrates the fact that the protestors have lost the middle ground - but you guys can believe your conspiracy theories if you wish!

author by joepublication date Wed Oct 11, 2006 14:58author address author phone Report this post to the editors

You think if they had a report prepared they could find somewhere in the 24hrs of news to fit it in.

author by Andypublication date Wed Oct 11, 2006 14:59author address author phone Report this post to the editors

What's the middle ground? Bowing to the "inevitable"? Buying Shell's lies and propaganda? No, Shell goon, it is you that have refused to compromise, and refused to make a single gesture to help resolve the situation.

I know history can be a difficult subject, but it's not THAT difficult.

author by PMpublication date Wed Oct 11, 2006 15:17author address author phone Report this post to the editors


Its quite the contrary - all the willingness to talk and accomodate have been on the side of Shell. They have accepted the independent mediators report and recommendations and have agreed to modify the pipeline route. Against that the Shell to sea group / Rossport 5 have refused to even engage in dialogue.

What I mean by middle ground is the ordinary person in Ireland who had some sympathy for the Rossport 5 but now have been lost through intransigence and misguided beliefs

author by Andypublication date Wed Oct 11, 2006 15:28author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Yes, very funny. The "independent" mediator, though, didn't actually do any mediating. He accepted Shell's position without question and accepted it in his report. There is no evidence in his report of any attempt to deal seriously with the issues that have been presented consistently since the beginning. Issues which, I might add, are fully corroborrated by several independent (o that word again!) studies and An Bord Pleanála's planning inspector.

And contrary to what Shell would wish, the Rossport Five position has majority support in Ireland. "Opinion" polls produced by Shell really don't carry much credibility.

author by counter spinning - XXXxpublication date Wed Oct 11, 2006 16:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The efforts by mainstream media to smear the Shell to Sea campaign are unfortunately unsuprising, Shells public relations department is going into overdrive to work out how to best handle this potential PR diaster and one of the easiest ways for them to do this is to gather so called 'evidence' and then leak it to the press in order to discredit the people involved and the campaign itself . The intended result is that the 'general public' loose sympathy and ultimitely begin themselves to repeat what they have heard in the media. It is frustrating because of course it is going to detract from the essence of the campaign and the rest of the time is going to be spent trying to defend the campaign from the silliness splurged out in the public realm and get the real debate back on track.

But thus works the media moguls, multinationals and governments- hand in hand as usual.

Anyway it is fairly easy to predict that everytime Shell needs to make a move and start work there will come along side a number of leaks which they will use to try and take away the impact of resistance.
So far its infiltration by the Provos and ironically enough at the same time there being lots of english accents ( funny alleigence that, perhaps the PR gurus at Shell have not quite worked out yet!) next they are probably going to single out an individual and drag them around the thorn bushes in the press- firstly upholding them as responsible, then cussing them down and trying to expose their private lives- this can be severly damaging for a campaign as it places a lot of tension of personal relationships. It is also extremely difficult time for the person 'exposed' as they can feel alientated and unsupported by the campaign.

Next there will probably be some violent anarchists arriving from Italy or some where else on the continent- and they will probably have syringes full of HIV blood . In Scotland last year for the G8 there was some hilarious articles that appeared in the tabloids about some Italain anarchist called the "raven" from Milan who was staying in b and b's in rural scotland and terrorising grannies...of course the raven never turned up but all of these types of articles bit by bit contributed to a highly uneccessary but difficult to combat climate of fear.

There will be more of these types of stories and there are lots of avenues they can go but it is an essential part of them trying to reclaim ground in a media circus that so far has not been so great for them. At the same time as Shell are successfully spinning these stories out in the media, the earnest faces of their spin machines will appear on telly and in newspapers assuring us of the safety of the pipeline, how generous shell have been prepared to be, and how there was a legitimate campaign that they understood and now it is being hijacked by extremists.

In order for this to be challenged- predicting the spin and preparing appropriate responses becomes essential- and it is for everyone who supports the campaign to do that- writing letters to newspapers, doing phone in's, contacting journalists and magazines and getting articles out there, doing information workshops and discrediting the information, trying to predict areas of PR attack and pre - empt them. Its hard when there is not the resources, time and knowledge to do it but if everyone does a little bit ....

The other thing is to support each other, there will invariably be fuck ups and times where things do not work so well but constantly reviewing past interviews, sharing the load and firing 'role play' questions at each other can help to bring everyone up to scratch.

'They' will also be glued to indymedia and other e-lists for exchanges of information and this will all be twisted and turned and reproduced in the media and in Shells PR , or even worse suddenly some bodies great idea to do a 'DIY windmill' course in Rossport will appear in a nice glossy Shell leaflet about how Shell is helping the community and providing a course for free to young unemployed people.

Anyhow- this was not meant to be a rant but I guess it is- I guess what I mean is lets not be suprised and lets play em at there own game ( well as much as possible!)
in Solidairty

author by supppublication date Wed Oct 11, 2006 17:46author address author phone Report this post to the editors

They already done some of what you suggested, with the off-topic attack on Maura's fine school. and they the mysterious qoute, yesterday from the cops about 'an upsurge in preparedness' by the protestors which is meant to imply... something along the second thing you suggested.

The Mayonews and the Connaught which has just started putting its sutf online are the most outwardly hostile

Keep it cool by TOM SHIEL

and Enda Kenny managed to intercede without saying anything of any consequence yesterday too, somebody disect this one
Kenny promises dividend

author by mookpublication date Wed Oct 11, 2006 18:53author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The same thing happened with the Monaghan Hospital protests. Indo team highlighted one former IRA guy in the 8000 plus crowd and used him as an archetype of the protesters.

author by Irishman in Birmingham (formerly in St. Petersburg)publication date Wed Oct 11, 2006 19:01author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Here's an idea, I put it forward as I can't be there myself.

Why don't the protestors equip themselves with large portraits of Michael Davitt, Gandhi and Martin Luther King?

That would be a pretty obvious alignment with traditions of non-violent protest.

The swine in the Dublin Four media will still carry out their obnoxious agenda of lies and slander (and I'm deeply disappointed in the Connacht Telegraph, a paper with which I have some family connection). But the key thing now is to find some way to appeal to the Plain People of Ireland, over the heads of the D4s.

Maybe something like the above suggestion would help do that?

author by ohhyehpublication date Wed Oct 11, 2006 19:02author address author phone Report this post to the editors

keep up the pressure people, the statements of edna and the like show that they realise that this looks like shell is walking all over the government

more public exposure is good not bad!


author by Stephenpublication date Thu Oct 12, 2006 18:38author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Why not encourage people not to buy these papers.
I know this sound far fetched but there is no harm in trying

author by Terrypublication date Thu Oct 12, 2006 18:51author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I have covered an article in Wednesday’s Evening Herald as a stand alone report it is here:

This is a brief commentary on other coverage in the newspapers and some other media from today and yesterday. Yesterday’s events in Dublin and Mayo were covered by TG4 and TV3 but not by RTE news.
Today there was also Shell to Sea people on the Joe Duffy show on the radio.

The Man From the Daily Mail strikes again:

Yesterday’s occupation of the Shell Exploitation and Production Ireland H.Q. in Dublin was covered by the Mail in both a news report and an editorial.
The good protesters/bad protesters theme continues but the Garda press office, Shell pr, and the corporate media hacks, between them have got their spin awfully confused. Who are the good protesters and who are the bad protesters?
The Mails’ editorial lays into the sinister hard left types involved in Dublin Shell to Sea. They are not “campaigners who fear destruction of a much loved habitat” , what wouldn’t they be the Evening Herald’s ’tree huggers’ then? They are not talking about “enhanced safety features on the pipeline, or an alteration to the route”, not that is right is it is Shell to Sea - ie no high pressure production gas pipeline anywhere on land.
No their goal was a “financial renegotiation of the entire Corrib deal”.
Hmm yes the deal should be re-negotiated to the benefit of the ordinary people of Ireland and there should be no high pressure pipeline in anyone’s backyard.
This has always been the Shell to Sea position, I would refer The Man From the Daily Mail back to the first statement of the Rossport Five upon their imprisonment, which says that.

Meanwhile though Shell pr people are quoted in the news report as describing the Dublin protest as “non-aggressive”, where as the Garda press office calls the Ballinaboy sit downs and pickets “aggressive”.
Who are the good protesters and who are the bad protesters?
Looks like it is all too complicated for them. The campaign itself that is, never mind the issues.
They havn’t yet managed to square John Egan’s reference to “English accents” at Ballinaboy with Williams et al rants about “Sinn Fein thugs”. I’m awaiting the “Slab meets Swampy” headline.

Other Papers:
The tabloid version of the Irish Independent covers the Dublin action on page 33, as a straight forward news report. As an aside the Indo has recently had two reports critical of wind power, it is not known if there is any relationship between that and the other businesses of the man who owns the Indo.

Tuesday the Shell protests in Mayo were in the Examiner and the Irish Times. The Examiner reproduced a Shell opinion poll which claimed majority backing for their development - the exact opposite of the TG4 opinion poll. Thursday’s Examiner gave extensive coverage to the Dublin protest, smaller coverage to the protests in Mayo, and considerable coverage to Jerry Cowleys’ question in the Dail about how much the policing is costing. The Times covered on Thursday Engineers’ criticisms of the project, and on Wednesday that of the Erris Inshore Fishermen’s Association.

What does this all mean?
Well it is always important to have a good thought out approach to the corporate/state media, as Shell to Sea does, it makes it harder for the cops to batter the shit out of you for starters. It is an essential component with all the other aspects of political campaigning - the net, leaflets, posters, etc..
But basically if the media want to get you they will. If they want to ignore you they will (there has been minimal coverage in the national press these last few weeks). It doesn’t make that much difference to that if coverage in a few less popular outlets, like Village, the Irish Times, or Prime Time, is different to the overall thrust of the corporate/state media, in terms of what the overall corporate/state media approach is.
They will say whatever they like irrespective of reality and what you do.
Let us take for example the much vaunted ‘pipeline modification’, supposing it were real, accept it and you are a NIMBY don’t accept it and you are intransigent.
Talk about habitats you are a tree hugger standing in the way of jobs and development, put forward an alternative development model like greater taxation on gas and oil production to pay for hospitals and schools and you are damned too, and oh why can’t you be a genuine campaigner talking about habitats etc…etc…

Related Link: http://www.rossportsolidaritycamp.com
author by paramedicpublication date Sat Oct 14, 2006 18:41author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Do private companies use charity-status, publicly donated - to - ambulances of agencies like the Red Cross? Can it not afford its own ambulance? Is Shell paying for the use of the Red Cross ambulance? Is it every day or what?
The report yesterday that the ambulance on stand-by at the Bellanaboy refinery site and at the service of Shell is from The Red Cross came as a real shock. There would need to be clarification. Please.

author by \Stop the rubbishpublication date Sun Oct 15, 2006 11:08author address author phone Report this post to the editors

It is easy ffor double jobber Gerry Cowley to flute around North Mayo every day. He has had the benefit of a state funded education and a T.D. salary.
If he had to go to England like many more of us Mayo people he would welcome some investment in to Mayo. But when you have the state funding your medical practice and your Dail salary you dont have to worry about a little thing called making a living.
Enda Kenny, Michael Ring and the rest know well the support that is there for this projecT. COP YOURSELF ON COWLEY

author by Reality Checkpublication date Sun Oct 15, 2006 19:51author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The investment in the area will amount to a few low-paid jobs.

There aren't a lot of local people who would have the qualifications to do the high paid high skilled jobs and who happen to be hanging around on the dole, but even if ALL these jobs went to locals you are talking about a handful.

Contrast this with the damage to the only growth area of the north-west Mayo economy- tourism. The refinery and pipeline scheme will do irreversible damage to the environment and hence to the tourism industry if allowed to go ahead.

Any benefits from jobs working on the refinery will be completely offset by the pollution and explosion risk.

Jerry Cowley has the best interests of his constituents in mind, unlike other local TD's, who are as always in thrall to big business.

author by Glenamoy protestorpublication date Mon Oct 16, 2006 11:50author address author phone Report this post to the editors

The ambulance is on lease from roadbridge but is staffed by members of the Irish red Cross. The vechicle is marked ambulance and has no red cross markings on it. This ambulance has to be on site at all times as to adhere with the safetey regulations.
When Maura Harrington got hurt as she lay on the road this ambulance drove past and continued its journey to the proposed terminal site. It turned around minutes later and returned to the scene obviously having second thoughts. The fact that the ambulance drove past the first time annoyed many people. This fact has not been publisised by any media.

author by Miriam Cottonpublication date Mon Oct 16, 2006 12:36author address author phone Report this post to the editors

Jerry Crowley, Joe Higgins and others gave a very good press conference outside the refinery site in Bellanaboy this morning. Joe Higgins made a superb challenge to the intimidation of the protestors by the Gardai and referred particularly to the fact that they are constantly videoing the protestors. He also set out fierce condemnation of the terms on which the Shell project was negotiated and their disreagrd for the wishes of the people of Mayo. There were three garda cameras trained on the TDs present (Seamus Healey, Joe and Jerry) as they gave their talk and Joe vowed to bring this conduct to the attention of everyone he could back in Dublin - promising that the Mayo community would not be left isolated. SH likened the tactics of the garda to the behaviour of a police state. The press conference lasted approximately 45 minutes altogether - and it will be interesting to see what is actually broadcast.

One ommission was that there was no mention of Maura Harrington who is back in hospital since yesterday having suffered a concussion from being punched to the ground on Friday.

Astonishing and brave evidence given by one local businessman - on camera - that he had bee offered £15K by Shell to back Shell's plans in the area. Keiran A is a former army officer and air corp member, said that in so far as Shell might have succeeded in dividing the community, this is how Shell are doing - by going around and offering people money. He described how it was hard to refuse but hoped that others would too. Shell had also promised him that nobody would have to know that he had accepted the money.

author by stop the trollingpublication date Mon Oct 16, 2006 17:13author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I'm no fan of any TD, Crowley included, but didn't he set up Safe Home to help Irish expats return home? A bit rich, then, to talk like he's seperated from these people... Reality Check has already dealt with your misled opinions re: the economic benefits (or lack thereof) of the project, so I won't go into that.

author by Seosamh Mac Provopublication date Thu Oct 19, 2006 04:35author address author phone Report this post to the editors

I would like to take this opportunity to refute the base allegations of the Imperialist Establishment Press that mise nor any of my comrades are involved in this protest. This is a sinister smear spread by pro-British agents withing the Garda, The PD's and Kevin Piss-Meyers( yes, some have actually been IN Rear Admiral Meyers). Once again the paranoid lackeys of John Bulls cricket playing ranks have chosen to denigrate and undermine all the efforts made by legitimate protestors to underpin the landmark agreement to have a protest. Consequential on this presumption of security force involvement and furthermore to restate the stated objective of having a protest we in the Provocatively presumptious Protestors Party would categorically and emphatically urge all those present to remain present, at this point in time. Not one inch of this pipeline should be laid and not one ounce of gas should be passed through said pipe. We have adopted the slogan "Not an inch, not an ounce" after substantive discussions with Witch-Doctor Paisty and as a concession to the aforementioned bigot.

Peeo Neelo
(well, where am I supposed to go...I live here)

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