To Collins and McGuinness, murder was not a moral issue but a matter of expediency

General Michael Collins August in 1922
General Michael Collins August in 1922

While I take no perverse pleasure in the death of ‘any’ human being, the expected – though quick – demise of Martin McGuinness, in truth represents the passing of an evil from this island that should be welcomed.

This is of course not the official view of the former northern commander of the Provisional IRA, and deputy first minister of Northern Ireland.

Martin McGuinness (left) follows the coffin of IRA man Charles English in Londonderry 1984. Picture Pacemaker

Martin McGuinness (left) follows the coffin of IRA man Charles English in Londonderry 1984. Picture Pacemaker

The hard man with a dark past come good in the end is the simple message which not only the Irish state, but others within the public sphere want the people to digest. However this is a toxic pill and no decent individual should swallow it.

McGuinness was exactly what it says on the Molotov cocktail container – a terrorist and a mass murderer. No amount of political optics can whitewash this fact.

During a notorious TV interview in the early 1980’s, Martin McGuinness spoke about the ‘repercussions,’ involved for ‘republican activists,’ going over to ‘the other side.’ It must be borne in mind that the term ‘republican activists,’ was a cover-all description for all of those inside his domain of terror.

The interviewer asked if the penalty, for going over to the other side was death? McGuinness replied in a perplexed mono tone – as if the question were so obvious it required no answer – “Death, certainly,” as if killing someone was a mere administrative measure, rather akin to an Executive in a company firing an employee.

This was exactly how Michael Collins defined murder, according to, T. Ryle Dwyer, in his Michael Collins Trilogy. For both Collins, and McGuinness, cold blooded murder was not a moral issue, but a matter of expediency – a view common among psychopaths.

One wonders when Christy Moore performed his lament at Martin McGuinness’s funeral, did he once think of the families of the victims of his hero’s 28 years reign of terror, knee-capping, and murder.

Did Mr Moore once consider the feelings of families still grieving from McGuinness’s murderous tyranny. Did much of the Republic of Ireland care at all about McGuinness’s victims as they raised a criminal from the dark side to the high Heavens, and indulged in sickening encomium for a most unworthy man? I doubt it.

It is reasonable to argue that the Republic of Ireland, and nationalists generally, and their cohorts, need to take a long and hard look at themselves. Simply because the state says it is right, does not make it so. All democrats on this island must challenge the canon of nationalist state orthodoxy. It is in fact a patriotic duty.

It is time to bury Fenian nationalism, alongside Martin McGuinness, as it should have been buried with Jeremiah O’Donovan Rossa in 1915.

Pierce Martin, Celbridge, Co. Kildare