There was little chance a murderer like McKee would feel remorse

The son-in-law of Jean McConville, the mother of 10 who was abducted then murdered by the IRA, yesterday reacted to the death of Billy McKee, aged 97.

News Letter editorial
News Letter editorial

Seamus McKendry said of the Provisional terrorist butcher McKee: “I just wish he could have found a wee bit of decency in his heart before he popped his clogs.”

The McConville family have for years laboured with dignity and persistence to get some truth on what happened to their mum (they aren’t likely to get much justice against the large number of people implicated in her slaying).

So little wonder that McKendry longed for some sign of remorse from McKee. But he knew any such regret was unlikely: “Them boys are so inured to stuff that I don’t think it affects their sleep anyway.”

Clearly most of these sectarian, lying, mass killers feel little remorse over what they did.

McKee, like several leading republicans still alive, and still influential on major issues of the day, was, among other horrors, implicated in the Bloody Friday atrocity, when IRA bombers blew up Northern Ireland’s capital city.

It was one in a long list of crimes against humanity in which civilians were massacred, and for which so few people have been brought to account.

Now, incredibly, republican paramilitaries and their apologists, Sinn Fein leaders at the helm of those apologists, can strut the streets, as they did in Belfast at the weekend, demanding accountability of a British state that they like to depict as itself murderous.

As the long life of Billy McKee and countless others shows, most of these murderers have lived into comfortable old age.

At least when a blood-soaked terrorist dies they can’t sue for libel, as some of them try to do when the media describes them as they really are (made easier by Northern Ireland’s failure to reform libel law). The press can finally write freely about their real reputations.