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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The definitive book for newcomers to Ulster history.
Martin Dillon is a fantastic analytical writer who does not shy away from the use masses of relevant detail. Instead of regurgitating pieces of text and information by passing it through his own editorial, he often includes the original transcripts of interviews, documents and even a complete printing of the IRA's 'Green Book', which is difficult to come by...
Published on 24 Jun 2010 by J.C.D.

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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not a good book
Have to agree with the negative reviews.

This and the author's "Dirty War" start with the ludicrous claim that the author has daringly exposed what was actually fairly well-known British colonial counterinsurgency doctrine and how this led to all sorts of dirty tricks. There are much, much better accounts of this area, including Peter Taylor's "Brits" and the...
Published on 7 Jun 2010 by R. Hughes


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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The definitive book for newcomers to Ulster history., 24 Jun 2010
By 
J.C.D. (North Wales) - See all my reviews
Martin Dillon is a fantastic analytical writer who does not shy away from the use masses of relevant detail. Instead of regurgitating pieces of text and information by passing it through his own editorial, he often includes the original transcripts of interviews, documents and even a complete printing of the IRA's 'Green Book', which is difficult to come by.

The book deals with snippets from the 40 years of Troubles in Ulster, and chronicles the lives of some of the key players involved in both the Republican and Loyalist sides. Dillon's research cannot be faulted - he is one of the most meticulous writers on the subject of the Troubles and I would find it difficult to question his integrity. He looks into aspects of the lives of killers such as Billy Wright by following them from childhood onwards, offering a truly impressive amount of detail on these otherwise shadowy figures.

'The Trigger Men' is something of a culmination of Dillon's works on the Troubles, and he does often quote and expand on his earlier books. My only criticism of Dillon is that there is more than a whisper of bias to his writings when he discusses mainstream Unionist politicians - he seems to have some sort of personal vendetta against DUP leader Ian Paisley, and his assertion that Paisley was essentially the political catalyst for actions of people like the Shankill Butchers is, in my view, unfair.

For anyone wishing to learn more about the Ulster Troubles, this is a very good starting point. It gives excellent, accurate information about Republican and Loyalist paramilitaries, and unapologetically dismisses false information included in other books on the subject (most notably the 'authorised' autobiographies released by former paramilitaries like Michael Stone). This is an excellent history book, it is engagingly written and enjoyable to read. Certainly a definitive piece of work.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars knowledgeable writer on ulster troubles, 3 April 2004
By 
Amazon Customer "WHITECRANE" (the MIDLANDS) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Trigger Men (Hardcover)
Although this book covers the same ground as Dillons previous ones,it contains information that couldn't be put in before because of legal reasons. For instance the chapter on the loyalist UVF unit known as the Shankhill Butchers,names one of the members which he couldn't do in his 1989 SHANKHILL BUTCHERS book because the member died in 1997. There are chapters on LVF leader Billy Wright(Dillon interviewed him), UDA hitman Michael Stone, 'mad dog' Johnny Adair, INLA leader Dominic 'mad dog' McGlinchey, british agent Brian Nelson,the Kincora sex scandal and its security force links.Much more including Dillon's own view on the STAKEKNIFE affair(IRA informer working for the british). It's not his best book but he's one of the best writers on Northern Irelands paramilitary conflict. Recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book, 21 May 2012
By 
kevinsprake "kev" (NOTTINGHAM, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This is a great read from someone who obviously knows his stuff. I just wish it had been a little more balanced and included some IRA trigger men. Having said that though it was a very informative read and gave me some insight into the loyalist fears and mindset.And the dirty tricks the Force Research Unit got into. Well recommended.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Loyalist Trigger Men, 15 Mar 2006
By 
bibliobiblio (Glasgow, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
The book should have been called "The Loyalist Trigger Men". Eleven of the thirteen chapters deal with loyalist terrorists. Another chapter is devoted to poetry and verse on victims of mostly loyalist terrorism. One chapter is on a republican terrorist.

Martin Dillon without condoning in any way the IRA tends to lean to the republican side. He uses a term 'physical force politics' in reference to the IRA. This is after all terrorism using a benign phrase.

The book is however fascinating and terrifying. It opens to the unknowing the dealings that were in place between government agencies and terrorists of both sides, and of deals between terrorists of opposing sides.

The book brings the brutality, and fanaticism of the trigger men right into your face. For all that it is terrifying I found the book compulsive reading.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A very insightful read, 2 Feb 2014
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Having gown up in Belfast and having experienced the Irish conflict, I have spent many hours studying many aspects of our troubles. This book is rather interesting in the sense that we can get a peek behind the curtains into the personal life of some of the most notorious players of the conflict. It was worth a read and I am a fan of Dillion's writings.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars remark, 22 April 2014
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the overall content of the book was for me thought provoking, and at times agonising, as I had been there and never a thought entered my head other than foe Queen and Country ! how wrong was I
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars insightful, 26 Jun 2013
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Very well written and very informative highly recommended for anyone intersted in the history of the troubles in n ireland
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars startling, but not surprising, 30 April 2014
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As expected from a great author, who may r may not have been, a spy. Knowledge is power, power is knowledge
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dillon at his best, 16 Jan 2013
By 
Mr. S. Richardson "SJR" (Evesham Worcs UK) - See all my reviews
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Martin Dillon is a fine Investigative Journalist. In Northern Ireland he has established reliable contacts on both sides of the conflict. Nevertheless he, at considerable personal risk, 'raises his head above the parapet' and tells it as it is. He has written several fine books on 'The Troubles' and Trigger Men is no exception. Anyone with a knowledge of or interest in Northern Ireland during the last 40 years cannot fail to find these books fascinating.
SR
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5.0 out of 5 stars great read, a must if you like to read about the history of the troubles.., 14 July 2014
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mamamiss the most normalGreat book for a great price, interesting !!!! love Martin Dillon's books....
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The Trigger Men by Martin Dillon (Hardcover - 23 Oct 2003)
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