‘On Bloody Sunday’ Book Review


On Bloody Sunday: A New Historical past of the Day and Its Aftermath—By These Who Had been There, by Julieann Campbell, Monoray, London, 2022, $29.99

The “Bloody Sunday” killings of Jan. 30, 1972, stay among the many best stains in British and Irish historical past. As each nations mark its fiftieth anniversary, this e-book (together with Douglas Murray’s Bloody Sunday: Fact Lies and the Saville Inquiry) joins a rising record of associated titles. Creator Campbell, a niece of slain Catholic protester Jackie Duddy, presents the collected oral histories of greater than 100 individuals, survivors and officers, together with 20 accounts revealed right here for the primary time. Amongst these interviewed are such notable Catholic and Irish Republican figures as Bishop Edward Daly, John Hume and Martin McGuiness. The creator interweaves such private narratives with modern information accounts and British authorities paperwork, supported with pictures, endnotes and glossaries.

Partitioned off from the remainder of Eire in 1921, the six counties of Northern Eire have been inhabited largely by keen British topics, a majority of whom have been Protestant. Residing amongst them have been an underrepresented Catholic minority who chafed beneath native rule referred to as Stormont. Impressed by the American civil rights motion, the Northern Eire Civil Rights Affiliation organized public marches within the late Nineteen Sixties. Sadly, among the many peaceable protesters have been rock-throwing hooligans and bomb-throwing IRA gunmen, who prompted retaliation from Protestant police and paramilitary forces in addition to British troopers. The rising violence led to the deaths of civilians and safety forces alike. Through the march in Derry on Bloody Sunday 1972, nevertheless, the elite British Parachute Regiment, aka “Crimson Devils,” lived as much as their sanguinary nickname, taking pictures 26 unarmed protesters, 14 of whom died.

An preliminary British authorities inquiry by Chief Justice John Widgery sided with the British military’s account of the incident, together with false claims they’d been fired on. Solely after years of campaigning did victims’ survivors obtain a measure of closure with the British Parliament’s Saville Inquiry, revealed in 2010, which squarely blamed the troopers and exonerated the victims beforehand categorised as terrorists. Whereas no troopers confronted prosecution, British Prime Minister David Cameron did apologize on behalf of the British authorities.

Campbell’s narrative presents an almost real-time impression of occasions because the voices of these current relate their collective expertise of that tumultuous day. Her e-book is a actuality test and poignant reminder of the human toll of battle.

—William John Shepherd

A New Historical past of the Day and Its Aftermath—By These Who Had been There

By Julieann Campbell

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