Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Tagged under: , , , , ,

The Weird World of an Irish News Journalist

Tonight The Pensive Quill carries an opinion piece by Guest Writer Paul Campbell on journalists and online shenanigans

The Weird World of an Irish News Journalist
Paul Campbell

Irish News journalist Allison Morris is some chancer. While having a brass neck is no bad thing for a journalist, Allison’s professional practices would make even the most unscrupulous tabloid hack blush.

This week Allison appeared at the West Belfast Festival waxing lyrical at an Amnesty International event about threats to journalists. What was omitted in her address was that her partner, Ardoyne man Fernando Murphy, has been involved in a campaign of intimidation against one of Allison’s journalist colleagues.

Sunday World journalist Hugh Jordan has been told by police that his life is in danger. The warning came amidst a tirade of online abuse from republican dissidents and others including Fernando Murphy.

The threats follow articles Jordan wrote about the late Martin Meehan senior and the dissident republican paramilitary group Oglaigh na hEireann (ONH). Martin Meehan’s son, Martin og Meehan, took umbrage with both articles.

Martin og Meehan is a prominent member of ONH’s political wing, the Republican Network for Unity (RNU). Fernando Murphy, Allison Morris’s partner, joined a chorus of vicious harassment and intimidation of Jordan on Martin og’s Facebook page.

Without any foundation whatsoever the journalist was called “an MI5 mouthpiece”, a “vermin bastard”, a “Brit agent”, “scum” and “a piece of shit”. He was ludicrously even accused of being a child abuser.

The vitriol unleashed against Jordan clearly created an environment in which he could be physically attacked. One dissident republican actually wrote, “somebody should target him”.

Another person noted the exact day and time that Jordan could be found in certain Belfast city centre premises. Allison Morris’s partner, Fernando Murphy, wrote: “Safe to say Hugh Jordan won’t be welcome at Cliftonville in the coming years.”

Jordan, an ardent Celtic fan, had recently attended the Cliftonville-Celtic match at Solitude. The Sunday World journalist took Fernando Murphy’s internet comments as a threat.

Jordan told The Pensive Quill: “Who is this man to decide in which football ground I’ll be made welcome? I was a guest of the Celtic board at Solitude recently. I attended the ground last year when the Celtic youth team played a friendly against Cliftonville  –  again, I was made welcome.

“For this man to tell me I won’t be welcome at a sporting event smacks of fascism.” The PSNI is investigating the online intimidation.

Fernando Murphy is a youth leader in Ardoyne and describes himself as a coach at Cliftonville Olympic. It is totally inappropriate that an individual who works with young people and in the sporting arena is warning someone that they won’t be welcome at a football ground.

It is also highly questionable that someone in his position should be joining in a chorus of harassment led by supporters of a paramilitary organisation.

Fernando Murphy added his comment AFTER ONH’s political wing, RNU, stated on the same Facebook page that it would support threatening newsagents who sold Sunday World.

An RNU spokesperson wrote that they couldn’t disagree with those supporting “an all-out campaign of intimidation against newsagents who still peddle this rag”. The group added menacingly: “In the past republicans have taken delivery vans and burnt the offending articles.”

This real and imminent threat did not feature in Allison Morris’s speech on journalistic threats at Feile an Phobail. Nor did her partner’s verbal thuggery towards Hugh Jordan get a mention.

Jordan has every reason to take Fernando Murphy’s comments seriously. In 2006, Murphy was convicted of attempted GBH, riotous behaviour, and possessing a claw hammer during rioting in Ardoyne. He was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment.

Murphy joined in the internet assault on Jordan AFTER the journalist had been subjected to vicious abuse from Ciaran Murphy of RNU, ONH’s political wing. Referring to Jordan, Ciaran Murphy wrote: “Fuck him, MI5 bastard.” The RNU member then made malicious and totally false claims about Jordan’s personal life and made untrue and malicious remarks about a member of the Rape Crisis Centre.

Ciaran Murphy – who also uses the name Ciaran Cunningham –  is hardly someone in whose online footsteps most sane people would want to follow. He was arrested in 2011 at a protest in which protesters barricaded themselves inside Alliance Party headquarters; in a later protest, excrement was smeared on the door and windows of Alliance Party headquarters.

Intimidation from Ciaran Murphy/Cunningham must be taken seriously. Just like Fernando Murphy he has a conviction. In 2004, he was sentenced to six years’ imprisonment for collecting information  –  in the Royal Victoria Hospital on police, prison officers and loyalists  –  which was likely to be useful to terrorists.

It is highly inappropriate that, as the partner of a journalist, Fernando Murphy is joining supporters of a paramilitary group currently waging an armed campaign, in their frenzy of hatred against another journalist.

Murphy has not even been content at targeting Hugh Jordan online. Another NUJ member, ex-IRA prisoner and writer Anthony McIntyre, has also been in his line of fire.

The Pensive Quill has carried articles critical of Allison Morris’s professional practices. Her partner has rushed to her defence but hardly in a manner becoming to the Irish News’ image of Allison as a serious, senior impartial journalist in Northern Ireland.

Rounding on McIntyre and elevating himself into some sort of super republican judge of all things republican, Murphy wrote in the public comment section of The Pensive Quill: “You met with Owen Patterson to grovel about your case – to the secretary of state of united kingdom – that’s republican?”

Murphy evidently felt that by raising the Boston College tapes case with the Northern Ireland Secretary of State, McIntyre was somehow betraying republicanism.

In case his ‘you’re no republican’ claims weren’t fully understood, Murphy repeated them again – in capital letters – adding “REPUBLICAN MY BALLS”.

In yet another tirade of tirade of abuse, Murphy boasted that McIntyre had been “shunned by the republican movement many years ago”, was hiding “behind a computer down South”, and was “grovelling” to the NUJ. He told McIntyre: “Get a life, u sad bastard! I have a number for Teresa Villers if u need a shoulder to cry on because of ur mistakes.”

Then Murphy stooped unbelievably low. In a despicable comment about the paternity of McIntyre’s children, he wrote: “Look after ur kids ohh that’s right they aren’t urs!” In the eyes of this youth worker, children are obviously legitimate targets in his online onslaughts.

If this is the level of intelligence of the person that Allison Morris chooses as her life partner, it’s no wonder that some of her stories are so idiotic and off the mark. Her judgement is surely questionable.

Last year, Allison Morris reported an ONH fantasy claim to have carried out a mortar attack on police in West Belfast. The attack was later shown never to have happened.

Allison has never explained exactly why she didn’t adequately verify the ONH claim before rushing to print and to relay it to readers as a factual incident that had definitely occurred.

The Irish News’ journalist hardly covered herself in glory when she interviewed Dolours Price at a time when Price was undergoing psychiatric care at a Dublin hospital. Allison refused the family’s request to end the interview because of Dolours’ medical condition.

The family then spoke to Irish News management. When the newspaper reached an agreement with them   –  understandably excercising caution in how it treated the story and only printing parts of it  –  Allison took the tapes/story to her friend and former Andersonstown News colleague, Ciaran Barnes of the Sunday Life, who published an unrestrained account.

As both a journalist and a human being, this was hardly an example of ethical behaviour. Allison’s actions ended up setting in motion the whole Boston College saga which has seriously damaged source protection and oral history.

But the Irish News journalist learned no lesson from it all and has continued in her own inimitable bulldozing style.

After her journalistic practices previously drew criticism on The Pensive Quill, Allison went to the NUJ with a seemingly wholly made up claim that the criticism had placed her life in danger from dissident republicans.

She produced no proof of this whatsoever. Indeed, the claim was so baseless that it was laughable. While Allison was claiming grave threats to her life, anyone taking an even cursory glance at the Irish News could see she was in no danger.

She was interviewing both grassroots and senior dissident republicans and she was on the ground covering dissident republican riots and protests. No-one was refusing to talk to her, let alone threatening her life. Allison’s actions led the NUJ to initially suspend Anthony McIntyre.

Thankfully, the union saw sense in the end. Last week, the NUJ overturned its original decision, McIntyre was re-instated in the union and Allison’s complaint was rejected.

Bristling from defeat, Allison set about digging herself an even bigger hole. She went onto a US blog to explain how she had regretfully not been able to attend the NUJ appeal hearing in London which threw out her complaint “because of work commitments – July is one of my busiest months”.

She also cited financial reasons: “We had to fund the trip ourselves including flights and hotels, as a single parent I couldn’t justify the expense.”

The problem for Allison was that this account was completely contradicted by her own tweets. At the time of the NUJ hearing, Allison was leaving Glasgow after attending a Celtic/Cliftonville match. So much for work commitments and financial constraints.

Yet again Allison Morris and the truth were on different sides of the track. Not that her own departures from ethical behaviour have ever stopped the Irish News journalist moralising to others.

At the Amnesty event, she was pontificating on how journalists were more at risk now than during the Troubles. She was also in full holier-than-thou flow on the US blog.

Lecturing others on journalistic ethics, she opined: “Freedom of speech does not mean being able to say what you like about who you like regardless of how untrue, dangerous, defamatory it is. We all have moral and social constraints placed upon us to stop language being used that is dangerous and puts the lives of others at risk.”

Allison was yet again preaching in this week’s Irish News about “lunatics” peddling “their warped” views on social networking sites. It’s a subject of which anyone in her position with an iota of intelligence would steer clear.

But in the column, “Social networks an ideal platform for extremists”, Allison marches on wagging the fingers at others. Referring to loyalist internet posts “full of hatred and intolerance”, she declared: “Now crazies, obsessives and bigots can reach a much larger audience without having to leave their bedroom or remove their tinfoil hats.”

To have the temerity to lecture loyalists and others whom she doesn't like, while her own partner is peddling his warped views on the internet, is remarkable.

For the sake of her own credibility, Allison is best advised to ensure Fernando Murphy stops his thuggish and intimidating behaviour. Because to continue preaching about media ethics as your partner menaces other journalists goes way beyond having a brass neck.


michaelhenry said...

Funny-when I read the Irish News today I thought Allison was having a pop at the Quill-

She also said-" Most sites have a block button for use when the posters almost always male,get out of hand "

Sexist fcuk-wonder if she has blocked Fido yet for all his barking-

Fido- the RNU are barking mad after reading that post with them wanting to close newsagents-the Nazi's are back in town-

marty said...

I as someone who is proud to be labeled a dissident because I will not follow sheepishly the quisling $inn £ein line find the above post disturbing to say the least,had I not seen with my own eyes the comments from this man Fernando Murphy who calls himself fido I would have looked at Pauls post in a different light ,I have read his nasty vicious comments and have questioned how someone who is so obviously nasty allowed to work with children,it also surprises me that he posts on RNU because his rants on TPQ began with I AM NOT A REPUBLICAN and if fido is a member then maybe thats the mood within RNU these days if so a name change is needed, journalists have walked a tightrope throughout the troubles here and in the case of Martin O Hagan have paid with their lives,courted by all participants in the knowledge that publicity is the key to getting the message across, the intimidation and boycott of newspapers is no new thing either The CEO of the ANYTOUT NEWS now Belfasts no 1 citizen once toured the pubs and clubs demanding that the Sun newspaper be boycotted, anyone who engages in such behaviour and says they do it in the name of republicanism does so not in my name, this guy Murphy has proved himself to be a nasty piece of work who has trouble telling the truth, his partner has been proven to be a liar as well,so for her Allison Morris( or is it Morrison the female version ) to take a seat on that platform and make those comments makes her a hypocrite as well.she would find a position within quisling $inn £einds publicity dept a doddle, mind you she came through their rag the Anytout News as a junior reporter and it now shows,lie down with dogs you get up with fleas..

AM said...

Of course she was having a pop at the Quill and not one fuck do we give. It is the Battle of the Blogside and we are up for it. And with writers like Paul standing at the ready we will be there to the end.

marty said...

Battle of the Blogside love it a cara thats you blocked pity she hadnt blocked her partner before he showed himself up for the dipstick he really is or is it a throwback to the days of the PRM...

AM said...

Some RNU people are complaining about it. But not my role to protect people from opinion they don't like. As I explained to one of them earlier I don't protect myself from the vitriol thrown at me. And they need to reflect on the speaking out that the projects I have been involved with over the years when they or their colleagues faced thuggery and intimidation. Whether it is Joe O'Connor or Hugh Jordan, the issue is the same to me: neither needs to face this type of behaviour. And of course anybody who takes umbrage has the right to reply.

F Duignan said...

Such a rant riddled with unsubstantiated allegations! This is not an article, it's an outright fanciful attack.

I'm surprised that the PQ published this. Hugh Jordan has no morals or professional ethics nor does he have any problem publishing his own created story lines about people,no matter how outlandish exploiting loopholes to publish about people who have had previous republican related convictions. Does AM think he is immune from Jordan journal fantasies?

I thought AM had higher standards than gutter press so called journalists.

I have followed your page for a long time AM and I'm appalled at this. I'm not on a defend RNU rant - I just thought you would know better than to publish total and utter rubbish.

AM said...

F Duignan,

thanks for your comment.

Perhaps you might tell us what unsubstantiated allegations are there. It seems the whole piece is very well backed up. But I am sure if you show us the falsehoods we will listen.

And while you no doubt have criticisms of the piece do you think we should have censored it? If it is as threadbare as you say it is you can have full right to reply in article form.

I think republicans of your school (and I presume you are one without knowing you or anything about you) need to reflect seriously on how criticism of whatever republican project is dealt with. Censoring it is certainly not the way to go. So what do you do? People like me are used to this sort of criticism given that we have dealt with it so often from SF whenever they did not like something. Some people in RNU know what that is like only too well given that they were on the receiving end of it when very few put their heads above the parapet. I hope it hasn't come down to republicans embracing all they stood up against.

Robert said...


I am not in the least surprised by your carrying of this piece. Seems to me to be entirely characteristic of your position on censorship and a continuation of your commitment to free speech. I think the principle established far outweighs any kudos lost amongst those who want Paul gagged on the basis that, 'all his lies are true'. Much there to be admired and emulated.

Dixie said...

Without a doubt Jordan has been one of Ireland's slimiest journalists for a number of years. He writes for a paper that puts out the same stuff as it has since I read it back in the 1970s in jail.

Amazingly the only times in recent years I've had reason to read any of it's regurgitated articles is when shown them by other Republicans who bought the bloody thing...Sweet fuck I kept saying to myself.

And this is my point, each week passes and I've no reason to wonder what's in the Sunday World or is Hugh Jordan still earning his beer money within its pages. The only time I hear mention of it or Jordan
is when some Republican drags him or the paper online with them.

If they write lies or whatever why the need to help them pass it on to those of us who wouldn't know about it anyway? Most people wouldn't know what they write each week.

Finally some of the stuff thrown out on that facebook page was not only stupid it was dangerous.
If people can't see that then they might as well be driving a double decker bus with only a Provisional licence because they are taking Republicanism in exactly the same direction as the Shinners...Into a brick wall.

Gobsmacked2013 said...

The Irish News must be desperate for dissident stories and paramilitary headlines if they are prepared to turn a blind eye to this sort of behaviour from parties connected to, or aligned with, Ms Morris.

Exactly what is going through Noel Doran’s mind when he hands this Irish News staff member a virtual get out of jail card every time she is caught blundering stories or not checking facts?

Not so long ago, the Irish News had more sense than that. It was a paper you could trust.

Why is the Irish News and Editor Noel Doran so keen to lie back and think of Ireland when it comes to giving publicity to a particular republican paramilitary group about whom Allison loves to write?

Is it fear of Allison’s wrath or her boyfriend's hammer? Or is it just the desire at all costs to have a sexy headline that will sell papers.

So the Irish News wants to win the sales war with the Belfast Telegraph and who cares if the headlines that sell it are total bollocks?

itsjustmacker said...

There is a lot in this piece.

Firstly I will state that If a Reporter prints a story and it is an honest story and backed up with fact ,then he/she should not be under any threat.
As for the Fiddo fella, I am at odds as to how , after serving a prison sentence for rioting, can come out of prison and continue were he left of as a cross community youth worker.

But the piece written by Jordan about an Ardoyne Legend , The Late Martin Meehan and his Daughter "Mary" who suffered so much abuse, also, the so called interviews (Non ).
As for those facebook comments on Martin Og page, I don't agree with those threats, there are other legal ways to go about it.

I am all for truth , I don't take sides , I say it as I see it.

Tabloid's Attempt to Demonise Óglach. Martin Meehan

AM said...


the link you provided illustrates a much more effective and robust way to challenge the stories that feature in the Sunday World. Og has made a strong case there and had he been more prudent at the start and removed the libelous stuff, which he later did, it would have been more widely distributed. Not too far back I had to defend TC on this blog against Sunday World vilification. The problem now is that Og's effective critique has been surpassed by the ruinous bout of intimidation and the Sunday World is seen as less of a problem than the threats. The Sunday World should be seriously tackled but for those of us who faced down the brownshirt culture that led to the death of Joe O'Connor and many other abuses there is a strange sense of history repeating itself in the campaign against Jordan and the Sunday World. Intimidation and bullying is not wrong simply because the Shinners do it and okay when somebody else does it. Hopefully wiser heads can prevail.

itsjustmacker said...


Martin Og should Delete those comments on his facebook , I hope he knows what crap he has let himself in for, Cops will be overjoyed at those comments, They are very threatening to say the least, and If yer man has contacted the cops about it, charges will be levied towards each one of thos posters who made threats or insinuated something which is not true.
As you say, Wiser heads will prevail.

AM said...


didn't get to read the comments, just the main piece.

AM said...


it seems very much that the cops contacted Hugh Jordan rather than him contacting them.

itsjustmacker said...


That just goes to show how much trolling the cops and MI5 are doing on social and blogging sites, people should take heed and curtail their comments , Martin Og should be well aware of this.

Ciaran Cunningham said...

Mackers should stop pretending this piece was part of some Free Speech crusade. The article is part of an internal NUJ spat between him a couple of others and Morris. For all the talk of not suppressing the truth, a spoof name is attributed to the article, at best it is the result of an interview with Hugh Jordan and penned with a false name. Throwing RNU, Martin Og and myself in for a cheap shock factor represents only a lowering of standards on TPQ.
Particularly disturbing is Mackers continued reference to my murdered friend Joe O'Connor. There is zero relevence to Jo Jos case and this feeble attempt to cover for a gutter journalist like Jordan. I would ask Mackers to stop evoking the events of October 2000 to cover up for his retreat into an inter Journalistic feud.

AM said...


all that said, the above article tackles a range of issues and practices. At the centre of the story is the ethics of the journalist who seemed to preach rather than oractice ethics. It is not primarily about Hugh Jordan or RNU although both feature significantly in the narrative.

Ciaran Cunningham said...

Who was the author Mackers? was Hugh Jordan interviewed by TPQ?

Ciaran Cunningham said...

Given that were all on a quest for truth. Does 'Paul Campbell' work behind the scenes for TPQ? Its just part of the article reads like Hugh Jordan was interviewed for the Pensive Quill, indeed it says he spoke to TPQ the other half reads like it was a genuine guest writer.

Dixie said...

Firstly Martin Og doesn't need to defend his father's reputation. As far as all Republicans are concerned Martin Meehan's name is akin to the Brendan Hughes, Francis Hughes, Tom Barrys, Dan Breens etc of our struggle - a man of legendary status in the annals of Irish Republicanism.

As a matter of fact I was reading about Martin's capture and escape from Crumlin Road just before I read the piece about Jordan.

I know Martin Og is angry but it doesn't help if others stupidly throw out threats willy-nilly which could get them thrown in jail.

Don't forget Martin your fathers name will be remembered long after we are gone. We are only reminded of Hugh Jordan's existence when stuff like this pops up online. Otherwise who could tell you who Hugh Jordan is if we ourselves weren't referring to him so often?

Ciaran Cunningham said...

Is 'Paul Campell' a nom de guerre Mackers?

itsjustmacker said...


I can understand were your coming from in questioning as to who the writer is.
At first I thought it was all about Morris.

On re-reading the post, I would say without a doubt, The piece jumped straight to Fernando Murphy , also Yourself after roughly two paragraphs.

But What evidence is there to suggest that someone other than the named writer penned the piece.

On RNU Ardoyne Republican (Martin ogs Blog, I see very few comments with named posters , everything is Anonymous except for the few named posters , myself included, I put a piece on the Rushlight regarding todays modern Internment, under the name I use everywere , "itsjustmacker" ,I invited genuine people to reply. I had a total of "ZERO" replies, so , if everyone posted on here as Anonymous it wouldn't be much of a blog , anyone could type what they want , although Anthony has held back post which were attacking another Blogger, That same blogger stated to leave the post as he knew who the person was. actually the same person could be typing as Anonymous and no one would know the difference!. Anthony and a few others on this blog know my full name and were I come from, and , the reason for using itsjustmacker.

I agree Jordan should be censored , but not by abuse which will draw the cops/MI5 in, and , they would be laughing their heads of at making arrests, I'm sure you know were I'm comming from with this, You's don't want to end locked up again chara.

itsjustmacker said...


I agree with everything you stated about the Ardoyne Legend Martin Meehan, sometimes I pull the wee book out and start re-reading parts of "Show Me The Man" , Himself and others will never be forgotten.

Dixie said...

Ciaran wise up cara. I'm certain knowing Mackers as long as I do that he wouldn't resort to the type of thing you are inferring.

My problem is that I see various shoots springing up which are becoming smaller versions of Adamsism. This is one example; trying to put doubt in others minds about an individuals motives if he/she doesn't agree or criticises.

Where does it stop Ciaran?

I'll give you an example of what happened to a former volunteer here in Derry who was fearless and who spent time on the Blanket. He later took to drinking to block out what he did only after seeing it had all been a waste of life.

During the so called decommissioning debate he was openly critical of what, he like the rest of us, saw as the surrender of weapons.

One evening he was leaving the bar when 4 boyos were waiting in a car outside and told him to get in. Two of them said to him, "We are all friends here but that can change unless you keep your opinions to yourself."

Now there are questions being raised about two of those thought thugs. Thats a fact. Also one of the two should never have been in PIRA given his propensity for abandoning operations and weapons yet he managed to use the Movement for his own interests.

I'm not saying thats you or anyone else but we all know how Adams and McGuinness managed to derail the Juggernaut using those methods. Will we learn from it Ciaran?

Ciaran Cunningham said...

Dixie a chara, firstly i hate the type of politics you outline above and would cut my eyes out before i would engage in them. Indeed i was hospitalised by the Provo thought police in 1999 having been seen marching behind the IRSP banner on the Bloody Sunday march.

Now for those of us who still engage in republicanism, we know one price is that gutter hacks like Jordan lie in wait to type drivel about us, they now attack ex POWs and the dead who they know cannot sue them. My place of work and movements have been published by his rag putting me and others lives in danger.

These are the people who also printed a photo of A SUICIDE VICTIM on the front page on Halloween, for kicks. Comments against Jordan on Ogs page represented grass roots disgust at his cowardly attack on Martin Meehan senior RIP.

Now with all the Social and Political upheavals we are currently facing In Ireland, last night Mackers choose to focus his attention on giving Hugh Jordan a moral knee up in his blog, which no doubt will also provide his headlines for this Sunday.

Its up to Mackers to justify why he needed to drag RNU and people like myself (who only a few months ago was offering him a place to stay if he ever needed it) into his personal spat with Alison Morris. But surely if he is now deciding to go even further and lecture myself and others about 'not suppressing the truth', then i am entitled to ask the simple question...who actually wrote the article?
Furthermore, did the Pensive Quill interview Hugh Jordan?
Read the article, one moment it reads like a guest piece, the next it makes it clear that Jordan spoke to TPQ.

Simple questions i would have thought.

itsjustmacker said...

Allison Morris of the Irish News said she had been attacked with bottles at the Divis bonfire site

AM said...

From Ardoyne Republican

I'm very surprised that RNU, Ciaran and RNU have been dragged into an article that is supposed to be about the integrity of Journalist, Allison Morris?

Hugh Jordan for many, many years has been at the centre of sick & dangerous stories against Republicans. He even employed an ex-Special Branch member
to track down the Tout, Denis Donaldson who ended-up killed shortly afterwards!

His offending article about my late Parents was vile and not grounded in reality. Coming a week after my sister's vindication was damning to say the least. Why did he not investigate her self-confessed Abuser? Beggars belief
a chairde for a so-called Investigative Journalist!

As for my comments about him, I make no apoligises, he put himself in an ivory tower and I'm determined to knock him off it. I will defend the integrity of my deceased parents till the day I die.

I asked Mackers to publish my original blog post about Jordan's vile article and he rightly advised me to remove some bits, which I did. As I respect his judgement on these matters and others. I also apoligised online
to Eileen Calder, as I wrongly attributed certain parts to her based on false sceal.

As for the rest of my rants about Hugh Jordan, I stand over all my other words. Those who wrote on my wall are quite entitled to do including, RNU, Ciaran and/or Fernando Murphy. After all, they are part of society and have
a right to express themselves. One cannot call for free speech and at the same time censor those they don't agree with!

The above article is ill-judged and comes across as an attack on Morris, Murphy, Cunningham, RNU and I. I don't believe that RNU, Ciaran nor me should have been included in it, after all we have nothing to do with Allison Morris or Fernando Murphy in the above issues!

However in their defence, Allison Morris has done a great deal of good work in helping my sister, Mary and exposing her Abuser over the past few years.

Whereas, Fernando Murphy is clearly one of many young men who got caught up in a riot during conflict with British Troops in Ardoyne, social hazard living here people! He has done some brilliant work with the reams of disadvantaged youth in this area and that ability should be recognised. His conviction would not have seen the light of day, had British Soldiers not been on our streets, but that's another story.

Finally, I strongly believe that dangerous people like Hugh Jordan and his ilk should be exposed by those of us who can articulate ourselves online.

After all, he's well used to demonising and criminalising Republican Activists whenever he gets the chance through that rag he works for!

AM said...


and she has every right to be protected from the thugs that threw bottles at her. It does not matter in the slightest that she has been trying to make life hard for me. She is a journalist, has the right to news gather and nobody has the right to attack her. This is not something that can be extended to some journalists and denied to others.

Ciaran Cunningham said...

Sorry for repeating myself folks.
But can Mackers please answer me the simple question, Is 'Paul Campbell' the real name of the author of this article?
If so, no problem ill apologise for my doubts.
Im only interested if the truth is being suppressed, and of course why?
It was good enough for everybody else to be named on here, and no doubt in the Sunday Rags this weekend as a result.

AM said...


It is very much a free speech issue so don’t delude mislead yourself into thinking anything else. It is about the right of Paul Campbell or any other person to express an opinion that you don’t approve of. What could be more free speech than that?

The ‘internal spat’ you refer to is also a free speech issue but again you seem to have let it go over your head. It is about two members of the NUJ along with its Ethics Council seeking to censor another member of the union. What could be more free speech than that?

Is TPQ supposed to censor something because you might not approve of it? Or censor it because you have been supportive of me in more difficult circumstances than we face today?
Your personal generosity is not in question nor is it the issue. Whatever was said about you by Paul Campbell fades into insignificance to what has been said about me on TPQ. Why would I shield you from opinions you don’t approve of when I don’t shield myself from them?

If it is ‘particularly disturbing’ for you to be reminded of the Joe O’Connor killing then it would be because the very intolerant, censorious, bullying mindset that killed him is at play again today and you unlike last time round, are not facing it down. And that I suppose erodes the value of your criticism of Joe’s Killers. I am probably as well placed as anybody to recognise the similarities given that I faced it all down (without taking anything away from your own stand at the time) and the follow up, from house picketing, physical attack, smearing, whatever. And I see the same mindset today.

Will get to your other points shortly.

Kev O'Higgins said...


I can see why you might arrive at the conclusion the author reads as if part of a non-existent stable of Pensive Quill writers and then raise your questions.

However, many people particularly those that have been through some journalistic training - even at a very low level - will often refer to the publication they are penning a piece for rather than themselves.

I have no personal knowledge of the author but my reading was the individual who wrote the piece had spoken with Jordan but as the piece was for the Quill, and possibly raised with Jordan on that understanding, when he referred to the 'interview' they described it using a typical journalistic style of 'spoke with The Pensive Quill'.

Even if the author hasn't had journalistic training, they write with an investigative style that could also mean they picked up the phrasing from reading investigative pieces in the press.

However, I can also see why you would have concerns. I personally didn't see the need to link RNU material and possible mistakes (we all make them and there's no shame in it) in a piece which was mainly an incisive exposé of possible journalistic hypocrisy. Though again that to me makes me think a new or newish writer who perhaps made a mistake of clumsily tying together what really are two separate stories into one.

Further like you I find the Sunday World a terrible read on many levels and I wouldn't have them on a Top Ten list of outlets with a strong record of integrity. Most republicans won't give its content much consideration, indeed I'd be surprised if many buy it beyond those looking the number of a masturbation sex chat service (I'm sure such republicans exist though they'll not be holding up their hands - with a telephone in one hand and a kleenex in the other we will drive profit to SW advertisers) so I see little reason being irate enough to call for extreme action to prevent its distribution.

Now I've lost my train of thought.... it was that kleenex quip, made me think of Bangers and that always distracts me, not in a kleenex fashion I hasten to add.

Finally I'll note your dignified and comradely comments to Anthony when he has published a piece which includes some comment on you you are justifiably angry about. That controlled response does you credit and I'm sure like many you'll be able to separate Anthony's dedication to free speech (which he clearly has suffered for) and avail of your right or reply, right to ignore or right to dismiss and ridicule.

And remember what the author may see as negatives in your past, many others will be reading as positives.

It would be most unfortunate if an opinion piece - and that is all the above is regardless of length, links and content - caused needless bad feeling between republicans with common ground that should be maintained even during rough patches.

Now that I've drifted close to agony auntism I really will stop typing.

itsjustmacker said...


I just put the link on stating She said she was attacked with Bottles.

I didn't say she deserved it, and , I sure as Hell Don't condone it , even if it was Jordan himself.

AM said...


Who was the author Mackers?
The author identified themselves in the article as Paul Campbell. If they wish to make any more detail about themselves public they are free to do so. Although given the number of names you have used it is hardly something that will bother you too greatly I imagine.

If you think the author was part of the TPQ team – either me or my other half - that would be a gross mistake. I always write under my own name; she under hers or Rusty Nail. The author was a guest writer wholly external to TPQ but obviously writing for publication in TPQ and on those grounds would be within their remit to talk to whoever they like as TPQ. When I wrote for publication in Parliamentary Brief or the Politician I would report that ‘such and such had told Parliamentary Brief whatever...’

itsjustmacker said...

I thought I would stick this piece in, which I posted on the Rushlight last Year, It,s from one of my older Rushlight Magazines.

Everything in it is Factual and True, and , It proves how low the British will stoop to.

Thought it would brighten things up a bit.

Sep 17, 2012 - 1:50PM
Quote from rushlight vol 21 No14 page 19 to 20, One Mans Terrorist, etc
This is intriguing. and its by our very own Historian, The one and only, Joe Graham.


Arch Bishop Marchiaros of Cyprus was a Terrorist, President George Washington of the USA Was a Terrorist , Prime Minister Begin of Israel was a Terrorist , President DeVelera of the so called Irish Republic was a Terrorist , Bobby Sands Member of Parliament was a Terrorist.
Mother England is very ready to name call people who oppose rule of England in their own country, Yet when the chips are down and England is kicked out , They wine and dine Yesterdays Terrorists on the lawn of Buckingham Palace , Bickies and Tea with the reigning Monarch of England. The first four mentioned were afforded this pleasure!..Poor Bobby Sands , like Wolfe Tone, Died in a Dreary Prison Cell!..You See.. "Terrorists remain Terrorists" , ,unless they kick England out.
Back in the late 1840's , England lined nine Irishmen up in a Dublin court and convited them of Treason, Having been involved in the "Young Irish Disorders". The nine were, Sentenced to death by hanging and their bodies were to be, Drawn and Quarterd, After the judge had been told by the men in the dock, "We are sorry we were caught, If we had to do it again we would be more careful, but if you be lenient with us we will do better the next time,, We wont be caught.
After many protests , Queen Victoria commuted the sentences to Transportation to Australia.
All the Terrorist were taken in chains aboard a prison ship and landed in the far off land. NOW THEN , who were these Terrible nine Irish Terrorists , did they take to a life of crime and terror in the new country.
The nine were , Charles Gavan Duffy , Terrence McManus , Richard O' Gorman , John Mitchel , Michael Ireland , Pat Donahue , Thomas McGee , Morris Lyene , and , Francis Meagher.
Some 25 years later England discovered some startling facts about the nine men who they banished Banished and labbeled Terrorists.......
The nine men rose to High Offices Abroad, and Here are the facts.

Terence McManus..............Brigadier General U.S. Army.
Thomas Meagher...............Governor of Montana.
Morris Lyene.................Attorney General of Australia.
Richard Gorman...............Governor of Newfoundland.
Patrick Donahue..............Brigadier General U.S. Army.
Michael Ireland..............Attorney General of Australia. After Lyene term.
John Mitchell...........Writer and New York Polotician, his son became mayor.
Charles Gavan Duffy....Became Sir Charles Duffy, Prime Minister of Australia.
Thomas McGee.......Member of Parliament,Montreal, Minister of Agriculture and
...................the President of council Dominion of Canada.

Now isn't that one for the records.

Verse of an auld song.

The scotch have their Thistle.
The Welsh have their Leek.
Their poets are paid about 10 pence per week.
Provided, No harsh words of England they speak.
Oh Lord!, what a price for devotion.!

AM said...


Strangely given ‘all the Social and Political upheavals we are currently facing In Ireland’ so many seem interested in giving Hugh Jordan a moral knee in the balls.

Again the point is missed. What Hugh Jordan writes is not being defended. What is being defended is his right, just like yours, just like all the people beaten and intimidated by the Provos, not to be threatened and bullied.

Bottom line should last night’s piece have been censored?

AM said...


of course you didn't condone it. I didn't mean for you to take that out of it either.

One point I would like to make before falling asleep is that because we defend Allison Morris from attack does not mean we approve what she writes.

Same applies with Hugh Jordan.

So for now, good night!

itsjustmacker said...

Good Night Anthony:

I agree 100%.

Just opening a brandy, but before I do, Logging off Blogging. lol

AM said...


ran out of it but am still off to bed. Good night.


an interesting post. And a good summing up of journalistic practice. The writer is of course free to talk to the subject and report that the subject said whatever to TPQ. At the same time I would not want you to think that I have not been in touch with Hugh Jordan. I have.

Ciaran Cunningham said...

1. Clearly the true identity of the writer is being hidden from the readership of TPQ. I dont think it is Mackers or his 'other half' (his words) but i have no doubt he is 'protecting' (again his words) the writer from scrutiny. Pious lectures from Mackers towards myself regarding 'suppression of the truth' should now be treated with at least some scepticism.

2. "Although given the number of names you have used it is hardly likely to bother you". Mackers, i was once a singer and used my mothers Maiden name when i did that, probably due to post Gaol trauma and a wish to escape the past for the odd night, which you should really understand. 'Paul Campbell' was clearly doing their homework on me though, fair play to them. No comparison to inventing a spoof name like 'Paul Campbell' to hide behind while snaring republican activists, such as you have allowed happen on your blog.

3. I have never threatened a journalist in my life, please refrain from insinuating that i have done that to Jordan. I reserve the right to speak my mind about Hugh Jordan, he after all has the financial clout to say what he wants about anybody he likes.
My writings have never contributed to anybodys death, has Hugh Jordans????

4. To compare some facebook comments about Jordan to what happened in the Murph in 2000 is clutching at the straws of reality and displays and element of desperation on your behalf to justify dragging RNU into your NUJ spat.

5. I have never been a fan of Alison Moris' work myself and have been victim of it in the past, in fact im pretty sure both you and her stung me in seperate articles in the one week around 2001.

6. The Pensive Quill allowed RNU and individuals to be dragged into Anthony McIntyes personal spat with Alison Morris, this was in order to add spice to the attack.
Somwhere in Mackers mind he can justify that, but in reality it is an abuse of power, all the fine words in the world cannot excuse sinking that low.

AM said...


you have had your say and made your case. Others can decide whether it is persuasive or not. Had the same tone been used against Hugh Jordan by those seeking to intimidate him he would have been on the back foot by now. But there we go. I am off to write about something more interesting than Fido although he seems to like biting people too ... Luis Suarez.

frankie said...

Maybe I'm slow on the uptake but I'm missing something. You (AM) got hauled before the ethics council because Allison Morris and Ciaran Barnes (he seems to have gotten away unscathed) said you put their/her life in danger<--That point missed me. I don't ever remember reading you threatening anyone or advocating violence towards them. So I've really understood the 'charge' in the first place.

The other thing that misses me regarding the ethics council. Didn't they see or have the foresight to realize by Allison's & Ciaran's interview with Dolours Price and printing it would put major problems of any piece of oral history/investigative journalism getting off the ground.

Didn't their editors even think along those lines?? I bet all they seen was 'scoop, big headlines,' somehow I don't thing the word 'ethical' entred their minds.

As for the author of the article. Paul Campbell could be a real person, could be a pseudonym. Paul Williams could even be a woman (wasn't JK Rowling outed recently penning as a man)..

And what Kev said..

It would be most unfortunate if an opinion piece - and that is all the above is regardless of length, links and content - caused needless bad feeling between republicans with common ground that should be maintained even during rough patches.

There is more to unite republicans than divide them.

I understood that Hugh Jordan's piece wasn't defended but the right to hold his views was. I understood Am spoke out about the pack circling Hugh Jordan baying for whatever. Play him (Hugh Jordan) at his own game. Take him to task in the print/radio media and expose his untruths. But putting threats or veiled ones on FB or other isn't doing anyone any favours.

marty said...

If it were not for the worlds media focusing their attention on the happenings here in 69 ,we would have went from a low key pogrom to genocide on a large scale, the lesson of the power of the media was quickly absorbed by everyone in the nationalist community especially the emerging new republican movement,we have had many decent decent unbiased journalists over the years who were not afraid to ask the establishment the hard questions and seek to investigate the motivation of the different paramilitary groupings here , Susan Breen springs to mind here , Barney Rowan is a thoughtful observer also, we have had loads of Nick the brit Witchels and Gorbels Gibney, Barnes , Hugh Jordan and Morris are in that tradition ,Fred Holyroyd would have loved them ,the point I,m labouring over here is that journalism has played an important role here and throughout the world ,there are I,m sure more good ones than bad ones but to censor them with threats would have a negative effect on all reporting leaving us all at the mercy of the state ,so for that reason alone I can tolerate the Morris ,Barnes and Jordans and Gorbels Gibneys all I do is exercise my democratic right and ignore their rants,there has been controversy on TPQ before regarding non de plume and I take the view that the message is more important than the messenger,and the posters comments about the partner of Allison Morris are entirely in keeping with the comments that this man who uses the non de plume fido has posted for us all to see on TPQ, his comments here have left a lot of people doubting his capability in working with young kids his conviction is neither here nor there in my opinion, threats whether real or implied are no way to win an argument or influence opinion,quisling $inn £einds tactics which initself are a throwback to the sticks should have taught some people that.

AM said...


the Ethics Council - waste of space. Now that I have won my case (and I always emotionally see it as a victory against the Ethics Council rather than against Morris/Barnes). I think I will simply quit the NUJ. What point is there in me forking out monthly dues to keep a bureaucracy like the Ethics Council in being? What did it do during Leeveson other than pursue me? I think the union ethos is to protect journalists before it protects journalism. And that means journalists not doing the job. All jobs should belong to the function of journalism; they should bever be the private property of journalists. Although, that has really nothing to do with this case - just me going off on a tangent about the union.

AM said...


I belive the actions of Both Morris and Barnes did serious harm to source protection and oral history. I think the distinction is she did it with no foresight - nobody I knew had foresight on that matter. The problem with Barnes' position is that eveh if he had no foresight, after it all happened he called for the tapes to be handed over to the PSNI. Morris at least doesn't think they should be handed over.

Anyway, I guess I will be hauled in front of the Ethics Council again or threatened by some libel lawyer.

Here's the thing. Big stick journalism won't work here. It does not matter what libel lawyer jumps on the case, how many Ethics Council hearings they hold. One determined writer/blogger absolutely adamant that they will not buckle, will not pay one red cent, and who is prepared to go to jail in defence of the freedom to write, can't be beaten by Ethics Councils or libel lawyers. Those big stick merchants can never win the battle if just one writer is prepared to take them on and face them down. I can assure you without fear of being contradicted - I am that writer.

Let them do their worst.

frankie said...

What pisses me of is the cherry picking. The RUC/PSNI want the tapes for a fishing exercise, put black lines through what they don't want the publc to know or other. I doubt if they had 'ethics' on their minds either when asking for the tapes. I think it was to settle old scores and cover up the truth (re-write history). But I don't see them asking other journalist's who have written about the troubles or reported on them being asked to reveal their source's.

The simplest answer is to have a real T&R process. And as difficult this will be for some people, there has to be an amnesty across the board. If that means former state forces getting of the 'hook'...That's the way it has to be (otherwise it wont work). Doesn't mean families can't find out what happened to their loved ones. But I don't see the logic in spending money in court fee's etc and locking up someone because of something they did 20/30 yrs ago. Which under normal circumstances they wouldn't have done or even thought about doing in the first place had the o6c not imploded
As for Allison It'sjust pointed out in a previous post. She puts herself in harms way all by herself by the nature of her job. She doesn't need anyone's help in that dept. Maybe I missed something again.

I've seen people talk about free speech and censorship. Speaking personally, I've never been censored here. But I know of certain republican forums/blogs that it's impossible/difficult to post on.

frankie said...

I've just finished reading Anthony McIntyre and Allison Morris Square Off and I don't understand why Ted Folkman is asking who is Paul Campbell. You'd already answer that. I was under the impression Ted took the time to at least read your replies/posts Anthony...

And in the lettersblogatory piece by Ted Folkman the last few line reads

I so I invite McIntyre to address the following two questions: did he write the article, and if not, who did?

In one of your replies you said to Ciaran , when asked the same questions (who is Paul C.) dated 09/08/2013. A complete month before Ted asked his questions...

If you think the author was part of the TPQ team – either me or my other half - that would be a gross mistake. I always write under my own name; she under hers or Rusty Nail.

Maybe you should put it up in neon lights in Time Sq I bet Ted would see it then... "I'm not Paul Cambell, neither is my wife"..