A tale of two cover-ups

While the McCartney sister’s visit to the US got extensive coverage this week, the trip to Washington by the family of Pat Finucane got less media attention. It seems to have been successful, however, according to this Irish Times report.

Mr Ahern has moved to increase significantly pressure on the British government to hold a full sworn public inquiry into the 1989 killing of Belfast solicitor Pat Finucane.

President Bush, who was said to be "extremely receptive" to the Taoiseach’s position on the Finucane inquiry, is to raise the issue with British prime minister Tony Blair.

Under legislation before the House of Commons, a judge heading such an inquiry could be prevented from hearing some evidence in public, and from hearing other evidence at all.

Canadian judge Peter Cory, who recommended the holding of a full inquiry, has told a Congress hearing that the British proposal would lead to a "meaningless" investigation.

In many ways there are strong parallels between the McCartney and Finucane cases. each family is facing powerful political forces in its battle for the truth.

There are also differences. Nobody has suggested that the McCartney killing was ordered by the IRA, which is under strong pressure to disband itself, unlike Britain’s dirty war apparatus.

Indeed, one reason for the resistance to the Finucane Inquiry, may be the desire to protect modes of operation being used in the war on terror.

It’s ironic therefore that President Bush might now be taking up the Finucane issue, but if it helps the family get the kind of inquiry they want, it’s all to the good.






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