From the Vaults: The Times, July 26, 1985

Why do some on the far left support the most murderous of terrorist actions? Below I copy an extract from a 1985 leading column in The Times:

Comrades of the IRA / Focus on Marxist tendencies of Irish terrorist group

The Times, July 26, 1985.

[T]he IRA … maintains a close affinity with hard left elements of the Labour Party. The journal London Labour Briefing, which has been sponsored by Mr Ken Livingstone, openly regretted that the Brighton bombing had not been more effective. Mr Adams and Mr Morrison have frequent contacts with left-wing Labour MPs. The Labour Committee on Ireland contains a number of members who associate themselves fully with the Irish Freedom Movement. Indeed when this Movement, which is well known to be a front of the Revolutionary Communist Party, applied to the Sheffield City Council to hold a rally in the city hall to commemorate ‘Bloody Sunday’, and permission was subsequently withdrawn when one of the organizers expressed his support for the Harrods’ bombing, Labour members protested against the ban.

For those not aware, the Brighton Bombing, mentioned by Ken Livingstone’s London Labour Briefing, was an IRA bomb at a hotel where leading members of the Conservative Party, including Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, were staying while attending their 1984 Conservative. The bomb failed to kill the Prime Minister but was responsible for five deaths and a further 34  injuries.  The Harrods’ bombing was another IRA bomb, this time in a car bomb left outside London’s famous department store, Harrods, on one of the busiest shopping days of the year, a week before Christmas in 1983. Six people were killed including three police officers and a further 90 were injured.