Interesting article in yesterday's News Letter (not often I say that). Controversial victims' campaigner Willie Frazer has met with the Historical Enquiries Team regarding its ongoing enquiry into the Kingsmills shootings, which claimed the lives of ten Protestant millworkers as they travelled home from work on a dark night in January 1976.
With the HET planning to arrest suspects the enquiry is far from concluded but nonetheless some interesting tit-bits have emerged, not the least of which is confirmation that the man who directed the ambush spoke with a distinct English accent. Frazer believes that this figure may have been British Army Captain Robert Nairac who was subsequently abducted and murdered by a group of south Armagh republicans.
Frazer has previously stated his belief that Nairac had managed to infiltrate the IRA by passing on information about local members of the security forces - including some of Frazer's own relatives - who were involved in a 'counter-gang' he was working with. This theory is corroborated by the affadavit of former RUC sergeant John Weir who was himself a member of such a counter-gang. A republican informant, Packy Reel, told Weir how Nairac was present at IRA meetings. Testimony from Tory MP Patrick Mercer relates how Nairac was able to drink in pubs in Crossmaglen while in uniform, providing further evidence that the IRA found him useful.
It seems that loyalists and nationalists, who have long suspected that Nairac was involved in the attack on the Miami Showband, have found a common villain. Captain Robert Nairac remains one of the most enigmatic characters of the Troubles.
Adds: the above linked info is summarised in this excellent article by Liam Clarke. Fascinatingly Nairac even told a close friend in England that he had infiltrated the IRA to such an extent that he had become a commander. Was he telling the truth?