Former Noraid publicity director, Martin Galvin, warned the Sinn Féin ard
comhairle about Denis Donaldson's behaviour around 15 years ago.
Galvin told the Sinn Féin leadership he had "serious doubts" about
Donaldson's judgement and strategy but his concerns were instantly
"I was told that Donaldson's credentials were impeccable, that he was beyond
reproach, and that he had the full confidence of the Sinn Féin leadership in
Ireland," Galvin told the Sunday Tribune.
"Donaldson had taken an interest in Irish-America from the late 1980s and
was sent over to run the Noraid office in New York. Almost from the moment
he got there, he was a negative influence.
"He created trouble, he made bad recommendations about genuine people, he
attempted to undermine supporters with traditional republican credentials
and he pushed those with reformist politics on the North."
Galvin said Donaldson had been sent with the "full endorsement" of a senior
Sinn Féin leader whom he refused to name. "Given the importance of
Irish-America to the British at that time, it was a great posting for
Donaldson. He had access to all our strategy documents, to our political
contacts, and to details on all the money we raised.
"I began to notice how he tried to push out people who had hardcore politics
and would be more likely to ask questions about strategy and even challenge
Sinn Féin policy changes.
"He would say these people were no good, and he would push forward those who
were far more malleable politically. He tried to undermine a very senior
Belfast republican living in New York and also the sister of a dead INLA
Unionists have called for a public inquiry into the Donaldson/'Stormontgate'
affair. However, Sinn Féin's Martin McGuinness yesterday (Saturday) questioned the
point of an investigation.
The DUP's Ian Paisley jnr said there were many questions to answer: "There
was outrage when Brian Nelson's activities as a British agent in the UDA
"It was claimed by nationalists that through him, the security services
decided that certain people lived and others died. We need to be told what
information Denis Donaldson provided about IRA activities and what decisions
were made on the basis of that information.
"We have had too much secrecy, it's time for transparency." Ex-Republican
Sinn Féin vice-president, Des Long, who is also a former Sinn Féin ard
comhairle member, said he wasn't surprised by the disclosure about Denis
He claimed the Belfast IRA leadership was told Sean O'Callaghan was an
informer four years before it was publicly disclosed, but O'Callaghan
remained in place. "Denis Donaldson is only the tip of the iceberg," Long
It is widely believed in security and unionist political circles that
Donaldson was sacrificed by his British handlers to protect a more important
mole who is both a senior Sinn Féin and IRA figure.