The Irish Press editorial, 11/8/1971: #BallymurphyMassacre

This is the editorial from The Irish Press two days after the mass internment of Catholics on 9th August 1971. THE MESSAGE FROM BELFAST Either the British Army has assumed the role of the B Specials or the orders given to the soldiers on the ground in the North do not specify their peacekeeping role.Continue reading “The Irish Press editorial, 11/8/1971: #BallymurphyMassacre”

Internment, 9 August, 1971

On 9th August, 1971, the Unionist government used the Section 12 of the Special Powers Act to arrest and intern hundreds of men. The arrest policy concentrated almost uniquely on Catholics, targeting those believed to be republicans although it included some other individuals such as anarchist John McGuffin (you can read his book on InternmentContinue reading “Internment, 9 August, 1971”

But Éire, our Éire shall be free: Edward Tierney, Belfast and 1916

Among those listed as interned in Frongoch in 1916 is an Edward Tierney whose address is given as the Falls Road, Belfast. There is also a Tierney tentatively listed among the Belfast Battalion volunteers who mobilised that Easter. So who was Edward Tierney? Tierney’s name and address appear in the list of Frongoch internees compiledContinue reading “But Éire, our Éire shall be free: Edward Tierney, Belfast and 1916”

Was ‘troubles’ related death toll as high as 30,000?

How many people died in the recent conflict in Ireland? You’d think this would be a relatively easy to answer question. But depending on how you decide to define a death as conflict-related, the total, which is usually given as around 3,700, is probably at least 5,733 and may be as high as 30,000. AContinue reading “Was ‘troubles’ related death toll as high as 30,000?”

…for fear of alienating the Unionist vote… #Brexit

A pivotal moment in the relationship of London and the European community, Unionist votes holding a precarious balance of power, Conservative government policy (including security policy in the north) subject to the need to keep the Unionist votes on side. While no-one seems to have drawn the parallel, we have been here before and theContinue reading “…for fear of alienating the Unionist vote… #Brexit”

“a position paralleled only by continental dictatorships”: the abuses that prompted the Civil Rights campaigns

An old post worth revisiting on the 100th anniversary of the Treaty. Some commentary in recent years focused on debating the origins and ‘ownership’ of the civil rights campaign. What has been missing from the discussion has been a timely reminder of the actual abuses that prompted the campaigns. At heart, the civil rights campaignContinue reading ““a position paralleled only by continental dictatorships”: the abuses that prompted the Civil Rights campaigns”

Erwin Beelitz, a forgotten conflict death from 1972

A German killed by Germans in Germany probably sounds like the most unlikely fatality of the ‘Troubles’ in Ireland. Yet, in 1972, sixty-six year old Erwin Beelitz was killed by a bomb planted in Berlin in ‘solidarity with the IRA’. His name doesn’t typically feature in any lists of those who died during this period,Continue reading “Erwin Beelitz, a forgotten conflict death from 1972”

#McGurks Bar: a brief prehistory of disinformation

This was published five years ago and still holds true, despite the persistence of the family’s in trying to uncover the truth. Forty-five years on from the McGurks Bar bombing there is much that is yet to be understood not only about the bombing itself, but also the context in which it happened. Mindful that the humanContinue reading “#McGurks Bar: a brief prehistory of disinformation”

Republican News, fifty years on…

Fifty years ago this summer a new run of Republican News began to be published by the Publicity Department of the Belfast IRA’s Brigade staff under the editorship of Jimmy Steele. The importance of publicity and communication had long been recognised across the political spectrum in Ireland. The anti-colonial movements, in particular, recognised the needContinue reading “Republican News, fifty years on…”