After re-reading portions of "Killing Rage" by Eamon Collins, I have a bit of commentary on certain interactions and points from the text.
The book is a biography of a Newry area IRA operator and eventual member of the greatly feared Nutting Squad who becomes a supergrass. He would later be killed in a breach of the Provos ceasefire (aka SURRENDER
) in January of 1999. It gives information on many operations and known figures within the Provisional movement.
The parts I wish to discuss and paraphrase today are those dealing with the alleged "Stakeknife"
of the Provisionals. As a member of the Nutting Squad for the border area, Collins had a great deal of contact with Freddie Scappaticci
and therefore gives a decent, though vague, character assessment of the man.
He is displayed as a brutal and ruthless killer who takes some amount of joy from seeing people die at his hands. The two short pieces of dialogue I am going to take from Collins' book are in reference to an alleged informer that was court-martialled in abstentia and executed by Scap.
Scap told him to keep his blindfold on for security reasons (i.e.
he didn't want him to know the car he was riding in and also the direction from which they came).
"It was funny watching the bastard stumbling and falling, asking me as he felt his way along the railings and walls 'Is this my house' and I'd say, 'No not yet, walk on some more....'"
Then Scap's superior officer and head of the Nutting Squad, John Joe Magee threw in his memories of the occurrence saying "and then you shot the fucker in the he back of the head." They both had a good laugh at the reminiscing and at the touts expense.
The Nutting Squad is a grim necessity of a revolutionary group at war with a empire with almost endless intelligence resources. Also, I don't really have a big problem with the execution of touts, but to express extreme glee at the sight of a pathetically helpless person is just completely sickness.
Even at this stage of the game, Collins and other members of the security squad suspected a tout within their ranks, as operation after operation was spoiled. The text never came to a conclusion as to who should be suspect, so Scap was keeping a low profile with his touting. Collins seems to respect his ruthlessness as a necessary evil in an organisation such as the IRA and I very much doubt that he believed Scap to be the tout.
Sooner or later, the books will be written on the Stakeknife issue and some amount of truth will be known. Just recently, it was exposed that the real Stakeknife's voice as heard on security recording will be released to the public in the near future. On that day, things may clear up a bit. People who knew and know Scap personally will know the truth of the collusion claims.