Saturday 21 January 2017

A bloodbath lost among daily slayings

The Kingsmill massacre in 1976 was the crescendo of sectarian slaughter in south Armagh, writes Jim Cusack

Published 26/06/2011 | 05:00

A constant refrain among those seeking to "put the past behind" us was that there was no hierarchy in death in Northern Ireland. Yet, there was. The British government spent £120m on a five-year public inquiry into the killing of 12 Catholics on Bloody Sunday in order to appease nationalist sentiment. There was no such inquiry into the "Bloody Monday" massacre of 10 men at Kingsmill or of any of the IRA's major atrocities.

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What knowledge this generation in the Republic has of the Troubles -- that part which has any interest -- is that it probably started with Bloody Sunday; then the British Army, in "collusion" with loyalists, killed 33 people in the Dublin and Monaghan bombs; then Bobby Sands went on hunger strike and died; and Gerry Adams then led the peace process. Sinn Fein has done tremendous work on promoting this version of the Troubles.

Kingsmill occurred in the middle of a spate of sectarian murders in a roughly triangular area from south Armagh to north Armagh into east Tyrone in the mid-Seventies. The late Catholic priest Fr Denis Faul dubbed it the Murder Triangle.

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