Government, the bureaucracy and the Garda themselves have no enthusiasm for oversight that is vigorous or adequately resourced.  Photograph: Alan Betson

The fear is that the progress towards independent oversight may be reversed

Garda reservists being sworn in in Templemore in 2013. Reserve policing is commonplace in Europe, across the Atlantic and in the United Kingdom. File photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Roaming criminals less likely to strike if every village had reserve gardaí

 Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan. Photograph: David Sleator

Opinion: Blizzard of controversies suggests it’s time for a rethink of police system

Unlike every other police chief in these islands, Martin Callinan does not report to an independent board or authority. He reports to the Minister for Justice, Alan Shatter, and the Department of Justice. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons/The Irish Times

Hopes for change rest on politicians with an interest in controlling the force

Minister for Justice  Alan Shatter TD and Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan in conversation. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Why did two State bodies come to a condition of deep mutual distrust?

Opinion: The Taoiseach has appeared to have no understanding that the commision does not answer to the Government

Garda Commissioner Martin Callinan. “The 2005 Act was fundamentally flawed in that it puts the commissioner beyond the remit of GSOC.” Photograph: David Sleator

Opinion: Whistleblower episode is just a symptom of much deeper issues of accountability in the way the State is policed

There was a close bond between Irish republicans and the ANC and its armed wing, MK, which was co-founded by Nelson Mandela in the wake of the Sharpeville massacre in 1960. Photograph: Frank Miller

Opinion: Comparison of situation in Ireland to that in Rhodesia was invalid and maladroit

Mr Justice Peter Smithwick’s report is unlikely to change anything fundamental. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Opinion: Evidence suggests IRA were well capable of gathering intelligence that led to killings without any help from anyone

Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Vicky Conway’s history of An Garda Síochána both interprets the evolution of the force and judges where it stands today

Ajai Chopra (left)  of the IMF and an unidentified colleague pass a beggar as they make their way to the Central Bank in November 2010. Photograph: AP

Opinion: We can take some satisfaction from the fact that we had the discipline to extract ourselves from the mire

A granite memento of the DMP at Pearse Street Garda station. Photograph: Frank Miller

Dublin’s Victorian-era policemen were early adopters of crime-solving technologies, and the Phoenix Park of the 1880s was home to (...)

The grotto where 15-year-old Ann Lovett died with her newborn baby. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Great reportage heightens the senses while supplying the facts, as this compendium shows

Who can remember a single name among the litany of victims of the past decade? Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Opinion: We have become largely inured to the obscenities of organised crime

Opinion: Sector offers talented young people an alternative to emigration

Irish soldiers in the Lebanon in 2007.  Photograph: Kate Geraghty

Independence of the two security agencies has served the State well in the past

Bernstein’s survey of the liberalising effect of new media might be less optimistic had it been written after the Edward Snowden r(...)

The content of the Anglo Irish Bank tapes published in the Irish Independent could prejudice proceedings. Defendants might seek to follow the lead of Charles Haughey in 2000, when he successfully pleaded that because public opinion had been poisoned against him, he could not get a fair trial on charges of obstructing the McCracken tribunal. Photograph: David Sleator

The courts must adapt to the new reality, which is that there is no such thing as an ‘unprejudiced’ jury any more

The Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, likes to use business metaphors but our Dáil operates on principles that no business could afford. Photograph: PA

The Dáil purports to do a 21st century job but shelters behind 19th century privileges

The Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, likes to use business metaphors but our Dáil operates on principles that no business could afford. Photograph: PA

The Dáil purports to do a 21st century job but shelters behind 19th century privileges

 The Garda Ombudsman Commission was given, effectively, the same powers as the Garda. Photograph: Frank Miller

The political establishment may feel it went too far in establishing the Garda commission as it now stands

The Seanad chamber. “We need more originality of thinking, not less; more democracy, not less; more accountability by those in power, not less.” Photograph: Alan Betson

The Seanad has provided a platform over the decades for some of the most considered voices in Irish public life

How much influence does Rupert Murdoch wield?

Is the judges’ argument really with the people? – Voting in 2011 in  the Presidential election,the referedums on judges pay and Oireachtas inquiries at Scoil Mhuire, Lakelands, Sandymount, Dublin . Photograph: Frank Miller

Do the judges have genuine grievances and who exactly should they be angry with?

Moneygall may boast a US president, but Durrow, Co Laois has a special claim to the papacy. Photograph: Matt Kavanagh

An Irishman’s Diary: Durrow might look to Moneygall

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