Socialist Worker

Britain's sick Ireland plan

Issue No. 1725

Britain's sick Ireland plan

THE BRITISH state is still attempting to smear the victims of Bloody Sunday, when the Parachute Regiment murdered 14 unarmed civilians in Derry, Northern Ireland, in January 1972.

At the Bloody Sunday inquiry this week Edwin Glasgow, a lawyer acting for the army, deliberately tried to discredit Sinn Fein's Martin McGuinness. He also claimed that another 34 people shot and injured by the army on Bloody Sunday were "civilian gunmen".

While the army still wants to cover up its gunning down of unarmed civilians, the inquiry is revealing more of the shocking truth almost every day. Over the last week it has emerged that the British state wanted to "encourage the spread of disease" in poor Catholic areas of Northern Ireland.

Soon after Bloody Sunday a senior foreign office official, Adrian Thorpe, wrote in a memo, "As you know, I have always been in favour of encouraging the no-go areas to rot from within.

"There is no reason why we should not encourage the breakdown of essential services and the spread of diseases, etc." The same Adrian Thorpe is now the British ambassador to Mexico.


Still soldiers after murder

THE MINISTRY of Defence is to allow two soldiers jailed for murdering a Catholic teenager in Belfast to stay in the British army. Soldiers James Fisher and Mark Wright shot Peter McBride in the back at an army checkpoint in Belfast in 1992.

Two years ago the then Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Mo Mowlam, released the soldiers, though they had served less than six years of their life sentences.

Northern Ireland secretary Peter Mandelson said the decision to allow the two to stay in the army "was entirely a matter for the army board". Yet John Spellar, Labour Secretary of State for the Armed Forces, sat on the army board that made the decision. Peter's mother, Jean McBride, said last week, "Tony Blair should be ashamed of himself. They think Peter's life is worth nothing-shoot him in the back and forget him."


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News
Sat 2 Dec 2000, 00:00 GMT
Issue No. 1725
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