I first read of the SAS in a Dublin magazine reported interview with Cathal Goulding of the “Official” IRA in 1971. He said they were deployed in the Six Counties.  Those in the British

media who knew of the unit’s existence never mentioned it and the first time most people were aware of it was in the Spring of 1980 when they were revealed on television  in dramatic action storming the Iranian Embassy and releasing hostages .During the release they killed some of the hostage-takers and after it they “executed” one of the surrendered hostage-takers in cold blood.

In a rare moment of courage, “THE TIMES” questioned the legality or the ethics of the execution, but that moment soon passed, and if any readers submitted letters on it, the letters were spiked.

Mrs Thatcher basked in the unit’s Glory, and Michael Portillo posed  at the Party Conference or other such forum suggesting  anyone disliking her policies  be next on  on the SAS hit list.

The  SAS were then  showered with laurels  as the descendants of  King Arthur’s Knights,  of Drake and  ofNelson. I’m not sure they were represented in Strictly Come Dancing,

the Great British Bake Off, Have I Got News For You, Brain Of Britain  or  The Moral Maze. But  they might have distributed presents from sleighs to children at Christmas

in Britain, fresh from slaying civilians in  Ireland without a peep of protest from most people.

The cult of the SAS might have a comic aspect but  one  “Andy McNab”  wrote a  Bestseller- “Bravo Two Zero” which inspired a schoolboy at Gordonstoun School,

 tha Alma Mater of Prince Charles, to murder an innocent Muslim whom he reckoned a “terrorist”. Mc Nab, might have been certified  “IQ TWO ZERO”, became

 an “expert” on military and  political matters consulted by fools.

“POLITICAL VIOLENCE IN IRELAND”  features in the books by Charles Townshend, a Professor at Keele University, in one of which he remarks on the dual role of

 Michael Collins as Minister of Finance in the elected Irish Government of 1919-21 and the organiser of killings of British agents involved in the attempted destruction

of that Government and the seizure of the monies under the Minister of Finance’s control.

God bless the Professor’s innocence! Surely he knows that First Lord of the Treasury has for centuries  been official title of Britain’s Prime Ministers . And those Treasury Lords 

have openly organised thekillings of millions and covertly organised the assassination of individuals.

THE TIMES, Friday October 16 2020 reports “Labour rebels defy whip and vote against ‘licence to kill bill’. The Bill – “The Covert Human Intelligence Sources Bill” has provisions to allow people secretly working for the police and security services to commit  criminal acts to protect their identities.

The report reveals that members of MI5 were previously allowed to break the law only under secret direction from the Prime Minister, “powers revealed in a 2018 court case to enshrine the  practice in statute.

It has long been believed that the SAS killing of an unarmed IRA unit in Gibraltar and of Ronald Bunting and his wife in Belfast were at Margaret Thatcher’s direction. And I’d be very

surprised if the “execution” of the unarmed hostage-taker after his surrender in the Iranian Embassy was not at her specific insistence.

At least one undercover Metropolitan Policeman infiltrated a non violent campaign unit under an assumed name, seduced and posed as a devoted lover of a woman in the group and impregnated her.

It is feared that the police may use vulnerable children to traffic drugs in the campaign against drugs. It is hoped that the Lords might amend the proposed legislation to make clear 

MI5 cannot say what is and isn’t lawful, nor authorise torture, murder, or sexual licence.

I don’t think Ian Fleming was a wonderful MI5 or MI6 operative, and his Bond books are a bore. But since the days of Walsingham in the days of the first Elisabeth, British Security Forces have enjoyed a Licence to Kill with impunity.

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