Speeches, Interviews & Other Statements

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1979 Mar 30 Fr
Margaret Thatcher

Remarks on the murder of Airey Neave ("some devils got him")

Document type: Speeches, interviews, etc.
Document kind: Remarks
Venue: Outside 19 Flood Street, Chelsea
Source: (1) BBC Sound Archive: OUP transcript (2) BBC Radio News Report 2200 30 March 1979
Journalist: -
Editorial comments: Exact time unknown.
Importance ranking: Key
Word count: 353
Themes: Autobiographical comments, Conservative Party (organization), Northern Ireland, Terrorism
(1) BBC Sound Archive: OUP transcript

MT

Airey was a person of such rare qualities, perhaps no one knew that better than I. If ever you were in difficulty, there he was, absolutely staunch and true and strong. And yet when things were going well he was always so self-effacing and just delighted with anyone else’s success. There were people remember him for a lot of things, perhaps most of all for the fact that he got out of Colditz. They don’t remember him so much for the many kindnesses he did. He was the person, you know, who got through pensions for the over eighties because of this quiet, inner sympathy and compassion, really a person, a wonderful person with tremendous inner strength and so have his family, and it’s that that will sustain them now. And just one more thing, some devils got him and they must never, never, never be allowed to triumph, they must never prevail. Those of us who believe in the things that Airey fought for must see that our views are the ones which continue to live on in this country. [end p1]

(2) BBC Radio News Report 2200 30 March 1979

Thatcher

Some devils got him. They must never, never, never be allowed to triumph. They must never prevail. Those of us who believe in the things that Airey NeaveAirey fought for must see that our views are the ones which continue to live on in this country.

Voice

Do you see it as more of a personal or a political loss?

Thatcher

For me it is both. For me it is both. I think it’s best not to say more about whoever it was until we know, but I believe it’s both.

Voice

Do you think there’s any doubt about the motive for his killing?

Thatcher

I believe someone wanted to get him.

Voice

Is this going to affect your campaign in anyway, Mrs. Thatcher?

Thatcher

Only to make us the more resolute.