Mrs Bland needs more facts on that

Published: April 12, 2012 at 8:55am

From the Sarasota Herald Tribune, Oct 21, 1978

In an interview with The Sunday Times, published last Sunday, Dom Mintoff’s daughter was asked about that time she and her pro-IRA friends threw horse excrement around at the House of Commons.

She said: “That was about human rights. I knew people who were subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment in the prisons in Northern Ireland who wanted a united island free of military forces. I was particularly close to a mother who had two sons and one husband in prison. I won’t go through their conditions because they were horrendous. (…)”

Well, it’s a blessing, isn’t it, that Mrs Bland’s friend had only one husband in prison. How much more terrible it would have been had she had two or three.

The interviewer’s comeback was that while Mrs Bland was agitating for human rights in Northern Ireland, back home in Malta human rights were being breached, arguably by her father’s government.

“Did you feel unable to react in the way you did in the UK? Or do you feel that human rights were not being breached at all?” interviewer Chris Peregin asked.

Her response, which was the talk of the town that Easter Sunday and will probably pass into legend, was:



It was good to be reminded of something I had forgotten: that the horse-shit incident was all about the IRA. Back then when it happened, I distinctly remember the grown-ups thinking how disgraceful it was not so much that Yana Mintoff, as she was then, had thrown manure about in the House of Commons (though that too), but that she was in favour of the Irish Republican Army.

To put this into context, you have to know – if you didn’t live through the 1970s and remember what things felt like with the escalation of European terrorism by the IRA, the Brigate Rosse and the Bader Meinhof – just what the IRA was like back then, and how it was perceived.

The Irish Republican Army was not about human rights but about extreme violence. In the 1970s and 1980s, it was basically a highly organised and well-financed group of murderers, with the worst of the violence in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Nobody knew who would be killed next, or where the next bomb would go off in a British urban centre, killing very many people, including children.

It’s horrible when you come away from an interview thinking ‘Damn! I should have asked this or that.’ I went through it so many times myself. I’ll bet her interviewer is kicking himself for not following up his good comeback on human rights in Malta in the 1970s with a question about how Mrs Bland reconciled her vociferous support of the IRA with the mass murders committed by that same terrorist group.

And why was she supporting a terrorist group in the first place?

Less than a year after Miss Mintoff threw her manure, the IRA continued with their ‘human rights protests’ by blowing up 79-year-old Lord Louis Mountbatten on his boat in Ireland. The same bomb killed his 14-year-old grandson, leaving his twin brother to live on without him. A 15-year-old local boy, who was working on the boat, died too. So did an elderly lady, who was a guest.

The IRA admitted responsibility straight away, and just a couple of hours later killed 18 soldiers with booby-trap bombs. All those soldiers had families, but it was only her friend’s ‘two sons and one husband’ in prison that Miss Mintoff appears to have bothered about.

If Miss Mintoff needs the facts on that, then what we need is her views on that. Let’s hope she won’t tell us that it’s terrible the boys died but ‘taking out’ a symbol of British imperialism was a necessary measure in the war to kick the British out of Northern Ireland. Did daddy, embroiled in his own battles with the British, approve? Sadly, he’s gaga so we can’t ask him now.

But then why should we be surprised at all this twisted morality and ‘head in the sand’ reasoning. The Irish Republican Army was financed by Muammar Gaddafi, who bankrolled its weapons. The bomb that blew up Mounbatten and those two boys was, like all the other IRA bombs that killed so many people in those years, made with Semtex sponsored by Libya.

Yes, the same Libya and Muammar Gaddafi who sponsored Mrs Bland’s father, paid him money and pulled his strings.

Mintoff’s Malta was, in the 1970s, a conduit for arms trafficking and the transfer of money from Libya to the IRA. We will probably never know at this stage whether Mrs Bland’s father knew about it and didn’t do anything because he couldn’t or because he had no moral objections, or whether he simply adopted a ‘three monkeys’ approach and just got on with things.

Everyone seems to have become sidetracked on the horse manure business, forgetting to ask WHY Yana Mintoff did it and what she was protesting about – which are the obvious things to ask. It is her support of the IRA when the IRA were murdering people that is shocking, and not that business with the horse-shit. That’s just laughable. It has been turned in the public imagination into some fabulous protest whereby Miss Mintoff went up into some gallery and threw sacks of manure over the heads of MPs.

But it was typically half-assed and pathetic. She walked into the House of Commons with the manure under her coat – and if you have ever seen a sack of manure you will know that it is impossible to hide one under one’s coat, which means this was probably a supermarket bag – and dumped it on the floor and on Dennis Skinner’s (of all people – a bigger leftie than she is) head.

It made the news mainly because her father was that Gaddafi bug*er in Malta and his daughter was protesting in favour of IRA members who had been jailed.

6 Comments Comment

  1. Horse Manure says:

    Why not publish her email address? I’m sure there are many who would help her with the facts.

  2. ciccio says:

    Some more details here. It seems the manure dumping was a bit more sophisticated than we heard before. Dung bombs were used. Was that some form of IRA/Gaddafi-sponsored technology? Maybe Ms. Bland can give more details in the next Labour Conference where Joseph made her a special delegejt.,908225

  3. Darren says:

    This article reminds me of the film ‘Some mother’s son’ which focuses on Bobby Sands, the IRA murderer who was imprisoned for killing a British soldier; and whilst in prison led a hunger strike because they (IRA prisoners) were being treated as criminals and not as prisoners of war.

    The film deals with the anguish Bobby Sand’s mother went through. Yet, nothing was mentioned of the British soldier’s mother. One of a number of films that glorifies the IRA and portrays the British as evil conquerors.

    [Daphne – In fact, Mrs Bland specifically mentioned only Bobby Sands in her interview. I read it and thought, how typical of a loonie leftie to think only of Bobby Sands’s mother – this when Bobby Sands died because he wanted to, on hunger strike – and spare not a thought for the mothers of those soldiers who died in booby-trapped vehicles or blown up on bandstands in parks.]

  4. Jozef says:

    Labour’s current international secretary, responsible for the definition of a foreign policy, also has some explaining to do.

    He could explain what the confidential memo of understanding signed with the Chinese Communist Party, contains.

    One shouldn’t forget the courtesy visit made on similar lines to Gaddafi’s Gemahariya, some time later, either.

    Nor should one forget how it had been reported in the press that China, during the Libyan uprising, was caught supplying Gaddafi with container loads of arms and munitions to quell the Libyan’s capricious taste for liberty.

    When one remembers Joseph’s thinly veiled threats to the EU’s policy regarding Libya’s treatment of refugees, practically reflecting Gaddafi’s, a logic and interest take shape.

    Funny how Yana never mentions Gaddafi, Arafat, Caucescu and the North Korean dynasty either amongst the oppressors. Could be because they all supplied Mintoff with democracy sharpening instruments.

    She could ask her daddy what he was made to do in return.

    She could ask Mrs.Arafat what she was doing here.

    Maybe get some information why the Egyptair, hijacked by Palestinian terrorists, chose to land in Malta.

    She could ask Alex why, as foreign minister in Mintoff’s government, did he threaten italy and Germany with providing refuge and the use of transmitters to the BR and the Baden Meinhof. This in parliament and recorded for posterity, if you please, such panache.

    The transmitters were only a couple of minutes away from her childhood haunt, brilliant.

    I’m not at all surprised at the desperate attempts to rewrite history. I just hope some have the good taste to realise what it is they’re doing.

  5. Neil Dent says:

    The interview reached its most obscene at the above point.

    Mind you, although she mentioned hunger-sriker Bobby Sands in passing (I got the impression the interviewer was thinking, Bobby who?), she was VERY careful not to mention the IRA by name.

    The interviewer’s apparent level of research was appalling I thought. Very weak, namby-pamby questions about not very much at all.

    [Daphne – I think on the whole he showed a healthy cynicism. I rather fear that somebody older than he is would have shown this ridiculous woman too much reverence, the sort they show her father. Imagine her chuntering on about Bobby Sands during her visits to her ‘constituents’ in Bormla and qieh il-Belt. She’s addressing an audience of ‘Sliema voters’ of the Bobby Sands generation (and believe me when I say that many of my contemporaries, who grew up as I did with Bobby Sands and the IRA almost permanently in the news, still somehow manage not to know who he was) and yet her chosen constituency is of a very different type of voter. That’s because she aims to get elected solely on the basis of being it-tifla ta’ Dumink – the tifla they never saw or even knew he had because she left Malta before I was born.]

  6. JJ says:

    Lets all hope that if the Labour Party is ever in goverment she will not make part of it.

    At 23 she did it in Britan and in 2013 she might do it in the European Parliament.

    She is a disgrace to the Maltese and should not be promoted by the Labour Party.

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