#OTD in 1977 – A group of Republicans tunneled into the concrete under the cover of darkness and retrieved Frank Stagg’s body to be re-buried with respect to his final wish, beside his fellow hunger striker and friend, Michael Gaughan.

There is a grave in Leigue Cemetery, Ballina, Co Mayo which has a concrete surface, placed there by the Gardaí in 1976, to prevent Frank Stagg’s body from being stolen. Forty years ago, the body was removed from the grave, during the night, without disturbing the concrete, and buried elsewhere in the cemetery. When Stagg […]

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#OTD in 1973 – Mountjoy Prison Helicopter Escape: The IRA use a hijacked helicopter to free three of their members from the exercise yard of Mountjoy Prison, Dublin.

Early that day, an IRA member had hijacked an Alouette II helicopter and forced the pilot to land at the D Wing of Mountjoy Prison where they picked up the three IRA prisoners: Séamus Twomey, Chief of Staff, JB O’Hagan, Quartermaster, and Kevin Mallon, activist. Irish prison guards were not armed. The helicopter had been […]

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#OTD in 1948 – Birth of Gerry Adams in Belfast.

Gerry Adams, born in Belfast, former president of Sinn Féin, was one of the chief architects of Sinn Féin’s shift to a policy of seeking a peaceful settlement to sectarian violence in Northern Ireland. He was elected several times to the British House of Commons for Belfast West, however, following party policy, did not take […]

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#OTD in 1920 – The Secretary of State for War, Winston Churchill, suggested the formation of a “Special Emergency Gendarmerie, which would become a branch of the Royal Irish Constabulary.”

In response to ongoing violence and rebellion in Ireland and a brutal campaign of attrition against members of the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC), the ADRIC was recruited in Great Britain from among ex-officers who had served in World War I, especially those who had served in the British Army (including the Royal Flying Corps). Most […]

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#OTD in 1976 – Tens of thousands defied a ban on commemorating the heroes of Easter 1916 at the GPO in Dublin.

In 1976, the 60th anniversary of the Rising, the southern state and the republican paramilitaries – particularly the Provisional IRA were in frank confrontation. The Irish government banned that year’s proposed Easter parade by republicans under the Offences Against the State Act – its anti-terrorist legislation. Just ten years after the state’s own bombastic commemoration […]

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#OTD in 1993 – Warrington Bomb Attacks: after a telephoned warning, the PIRA exploded two bombs in Warrington, Cheshire, England.

The Warrington bombings were two separate bomb attacks that took place during early 1993 in Warrington, England. The first attack happened on 26 February, when a bomb exploded at a gas storage facility. It caused extensive damage but no injuries. While fleeing the scene, the bombers shot and injured a police officer and two of […]

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#OTD in 1988 – The Gibraltar Three: three unarmed IRA members, Mairéad Farrell, Danny McCann and Sean Savage were shot dead by undercover members of the SAS in Gibraltar.

Three members of the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA) were executed by the British Special Air Service (SAS) in Gibraltar, referred to as Operation Flavius. The three—Seán Savage, Daniel McCann, and Mairéad Farrell were believed to be mounting a bombing attack on British military personnel in Gibraltar. What is undeniable is that just before 4:00pm […]

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