A thrilling chase through a media minefield – from Belfast riots to intrigue at a Paris news agency, then on to Singapore, New York and elsewhere. Author David O’Donoghue harks back to a lost world of clattering typewriters in a frenetic RTE newsroom where nervous reporters kept one step ahead of their creditors. This unique insight into the news business uncovers what the viewers and listeners never saw, including an intrepid RTE film editor who managed to portray his own handiwork on the main TV news after earlier trying to set fire to the visiting Springboks rugby team bus!
Nothing is quite what is seems in this rollercoaster ride with walk-on parts by Gore Vidal, Ayatollah Khomeini, the Dalai Lama and the inside story of Charlie Haughey’s first foreign visit as Taoiseach to Paris, deliberately snubbing Margaret Thatcher.
Line of Fire also reveals the background story of the Herrema kidnapping, as well as naming the Irish government minister whose IRA father was sent to kill William Joyce (aka Lord Haw Haw, Hitler’s chief radio announcer) in Galway. In addition, readers will discover the identity of a senior Irish official who astonished foreign diplomats in New York with a table-top rendition of ‘The Old Bog Road’. And there’s lots more besides in this no-holds-barred account of news reporting both here and abroad.
Line of Fire will appeal to all those with an interest in the changing world of journalism, and Ireland, in the latter half of the twentieth century.
David O’Donoghue is a native of Cork city and began his journalism career with the Midland Tribune in Offaly, later moving to the Connacht Tribune in Galway. For several years he was a reporter for RTE News in Dublin, Belfast and Cork, before joining the staff of French news agency AFP in Paris. He also worked for Europa Television in Brussels and was a parliamentary reporter in Dáil Éireann. He is the author of three books on Irish history.