Friday 26 May 2017

James Downey: Let us thank Lord Saville for the truth and move on

Fr Edward Daly who would later become Bishop of Derry, helps evacuate one the Bloody Sunday victims
Fr Edward Daly who would later become Bishop of Derry, helps evacuate one the Bloody Sunday victims
James Downey

James Downey

ON THAT unforgettable winter afternoon, as the Bloody Sunday death toll grew higher and higher with every news bulletin, an air close to panic gripped Whitehall.

Not much worse can happen to any government than to lose control of its armed forces. And the forces of the British state were manifestly out of control in Derry. Who was to blame? Had the soldiers gone berserk and disobeyed their orders? Or had the massacre been planned and organised at some higher level? This was a terrifying thought.

The panic abated quickly as the government of Edward Heath put a holding operation in place. Unfortunately, it would do more harm than the killings themselves.

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