Seán Lemass: IRA was infiltrated by British secret service

Taoiseach believed IRA bombing campaign in 1939 masterminded by British agents to scupper partition talks

Members of the old IRA fire volleys at the funeral, in September 1938, of Edward Keegan, an Irish Volunteer who was dismissed from the advertising department of ‘The Irish Times’ for going to fight in the Easter Rising. The paper has bought his 1916 medal to put on permanent display in the foyer. Photograph courtesy of his granddaughter Joan Pinhorn

Members of the old IRA fire volleys at the funeral, in September 1938, of Edward Keegan, an Irish Volunteer who was dismissed from the advertising department of ‘The Irish Times’ for going to fight in the Easter Rising. The paper has bought his 1916 medal to put on permanent display in the foyer. Photograph courtesy of his granddaughter Joan Pinhorn

The IRA, which carried out a series of bombing attacks in England before the opening of the second World War, had been infiltrated by “ultra-conservative sections of the British secret service”, Seán Lemass believed.

Lemass accused the IRA of scuppering attempts by the Irish government to open a line of dialogue with the Stormont government over the issue of partition.

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