#OTD in 1978 – The European Court of Human Rights made its ruling on the case of alleged ill-treatment of internees during 1971.

In 1971 the Hillside Singers, in a song designed to inspire worldwide unity, sang of how they’d like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony; apparently the inspiration for the song came from the writers’ experiences while delayed at Ireland’s Shannon Airport. Documents unearthed by the Irish human rights NGO and The Pat […]

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#OTD in 1922 – The Parliament of the occupied six counties of Northern Ireland opt out of the Free State.

The parliament of Northern Ireland exercises its option to opt out of the Irish Free State and petitions King George V: “MOST GRACIOUS SOVEREIGN, We, your Majesty’s most dutiful and loyal subjects, the Senators and Commons of Northern Ireland in Parliament assembled, having learnt of the passing of the Irish Free State Constitution Act, 1922, […]

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#OTD in 1969 – The British Army was deployed on the streets in the north of Ireland, which marked the beginning of ‘Operation Banner’.

Following on from the Peoples Democracy march of 1st January 1969 from Belfast to Derry and the subsequent rioting in the Bogside and other towns in the north of Ireland, the Northern Ireland Civil Rights Association and its supporters were openly condemned by the Government of Northern Ireland as being manipulated by communists, republicans and […]

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#OTD in 1971 – 9-11: During the internment round-up operation in west Belfast, the Parachute Regiment killed 11 unarmed civilians in what became known as the Ballymurphy massacre.

On 9th of August 1971, Interment Without Trial was introduced by the British Government in the North of Ireland. This policy was implemented by the British Army at 4am on that particular summer morning. The British Army directed the campaign against the predominately Catholic community with the stated aim to “shock and stun the civilian […]

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#OTD in 2009 – Death of author, Frank McCourt, in New York.

Writer and educator Francis “Frank” McCourt was born on 19 August 1930, in Brooklyn, New York, as the eldest of seven children. McCourt’s father, Malachy, worked odd jobs while his mother, Angela, worked to raise the children. The family frequently struggled to make ends meet and, after a long stint of unemployment during the Depression, […]

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#OTD in 1981 – Martin Hurson, Irish political prisoner, dies on hunger strike.

Fuair siad bás ar son Saoirse na hÉireann. On 29 May 1981, Martin Hurson joined the hunger-strike, replacing South Derryman Brendan McLoughlin who was forced to drop out because of a burst stomach ulcer. Having seriously deteriorated after forty days on hunger-strike, he was unable to hold down water and died a horrifically agonising death […]

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#OTD in 1998 – The three Quinn brothers, Richard, 11, Mark, 10, and Jason 9, are burned to death by a Loyalist firebomb in Ballymoney, 40 miles northwest of Belfast. 

Ar dheis Dé go raibh a n-anamacha. Jason, Richard and Mark Quinn were three brothers killed by the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) in a firebomb attack on their home in Ballymoney, Co Antrim. Garfield Gilmour, was found guilty of murdering the three brothers 15 months later and sentenced to life imprisonment after admitting that he […]

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Twelfth of July Orange Order Marches | Demonstrations: A History of Violence

The Orange community is the inheritor of a tradition and a set of religious and cultural sensibilities that purport to come from the period of Britain’s Glorious Revolution, the 1688-90 Williamite Revolution when the last Stuart, James II, was ousted and the Protestant Settlement secured. As the defenders of the Crown and the faith, then, […]

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#OTD in 1972 – Springhill Massacre: British snipers shot dead five Catholic civilians and wounded two others in Springhill, Belfast.

The Springhill Massacre was a shooting incident on 9 July 1972 in the Springhill estate in west Belfast. Five civilians were killed by British Army snipers firing from a timber yard. Army snipers took up positions in Corry’s timber yard and reinforced them with sandbags. Two cars pulled into Springhill and the snipers fired two […]

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#OTD in 1970 – Falls Road Curfew: Beginning in the afternoon, the British Army carried out extensive house searches in the Falls Road area of Belfast for members of the IRA and IRA arms.

At approximately 4.30pm a mixed patrol of British Army soldiers and RUC pulled up to no.24 Balkan Street, in the Lower Falls in west Belfast. They were acting on a tip-off from a ‘concerned resident’ about a stash of weapons hidden in the property. What happened next is widely seen as having changed the course […]

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