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BBC 4: The Troubles - A Secret History

Discussion in 'off topic' started by Tony L, Sep 10, 2019.

  1. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    In what can be viewed as the best example of anti-Brexit/Johnson trolling ever, or at least since screening ‘Rise Of The Nazis’ last week to coincide with the shutdown of parliament, the BBC have unleashed a truly remarkable seven part documentary on the history of the Northern Ireland ‘Troubles’. This really is essential viewing, it is astonishingly well researched with huge amounts of new declassified information, unseen footage, fresh interviews etc. The first 90 minute episode went out tonight and if the quality remains of this exceptional standard it has the making of one of the most significant documentary series in the BBC’s history IMHO. Absolutely perfect timing too given it is all starting up again!

    Here on iPlayer if missed.
  2. Frankiesays

    Frankiesays Rats is life.

    Is this one for the swivel eyed Corbynite terrorist supporting types? And I thought the PFM massive hated the BBC? What has bought about this sudden change of heart?
  3. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    There is no side in the NI thing without terrorists!

    I can’t speak for others, but whilst I have my criticisms of the news and current affairs strands (e.g. News 24, Politics Live, QT etc) I’ve never felt the documentary and arts side ever falls below what I’m happy to pay a license fee for. BBC4 is an exceptionally good channel IMO, and this is a high quality historical documentary.
    joel, Sloop John B, irons1965 and 2 others like this.
  4. kendo

    kendo Prussian bot

    Watch it and see, you never know, you might learn something...
    ks.234 and cooky1257 like this.
  5. Stunsworth

    Stunsworth pfm Member

    I didn't manage to catch it all, so I'll watch it on iPlayer at the weekend. I agree with Tony, it looks like it's going to turn out to be a major series.

    I was surprised at the footage of McGuinness sat in a car showing small kids his revolver and bullets. I wouldn't have thought something like that would have been filmed.
  6. MikeMA

    MikeMA pfm Member

    I thought it looked promising, much better than "Rise Of The Nazis" which I thought a bit was a bit shallow. Good timing by the BBC though!
  7. twotone

    twotone pfm Member

    The was the one thing that annoyed me about the programme, they tried to conflate both Mcguinnes incidents by showing them together ie blurring the timeline but he was much younger in the second incident than he was in the first one.

    The Derry guildhall bombing was in 1972 when McGuinness was 22 and I’m sure I read somewhere or heard on the programme that the bullets incident in the car occurred when he was 18 so 1968.

    I’m not condoning his actions btw just pointing out the obvious bias of the documentary makers.
  8. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    I didn’t have a problem with that, both incidents were comfortably within the timeline of the program likely only a year or two apart if that, both indicated the exact same mindset/message. It presented concrete proof of his involvement with the violence of the IRA.

    From my own perspective as someone with limited knowledge of the subject the most interesting aspect was the early bombings that did so much damage to power, water supply etc were carried out by the Protestant Loyalists (i.e. Paisley’s lot). I didn’t know that. As time goes on I suspect we will learn a lot more about the shower currently propping up the Tory party and the violence and intimidation they are built upon.

    FWIW I am sure I have a very inaccurate and biased perspective of the whole period having had little real interest in researching further and inevitably having been conditioned by a hugely partisan and biased UK press (e.g. I clearly remember the TV censorship during Thatcher’s rein). A disgrace in hindsight.
    Thinkfloyd likes this.
  9. Stunsworth

    Stunsworth pfm Member

    But a great time to be a voice over artist. To be honest, the ban should have ended as soon as actors started dubbing the voices.
  10. twotone

    twotone pfm Member

    Aye censorship was terrible the footage of the poor girl blinded by the rubber bullet when she was in her own house has never broadcast before.

    I’ve read quite a bit about the troubles there are some excellent books available one of the worst things the police informants did back then was to leave people’s files on desks in the social security office or job centre, hospitals etc etc in full view of the ‘window cleaners’ who were loyalist murderers or gunmen who would then use the information to go and murdered some poor guy/woman.
  11. cooky1257

    cooky1257 pfm Member

    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019
  12. hifinutt

    hifinutt hifinutt

    I regularly work with an ex soldier who did time in the troubles and interesting to hear his stories .
  13. twotone

    twotone pfm Member

    Ballymurphy was just outright callous murder on a grand scale, one poor woman was shot six times in the abdomen and left to die in field for something like six hours and was refused hospital treatment, if an ambulance had been allowed to go to her she would have survived.

    Think they shot a priest too and a father and son.

    Commemoration plaque in a remembrance garden in Ballymurphy, Belfast
    Six civilians were killed on 9 August:

    • Francis Quinn (19), shot while going to the aid of a wounded man.[12][13]
    • Fr. Hugh Mullan (38), a Catholic priest, shot while going to the aid of a wounded man, reputedly while waving a white cloth to indicate his intentions.[12][14][15]
    • Joan Connolly (44), shot as she stood opposite the army base. It has been claimed she was shot by three soldiers and that she might have survived had she been given medical attention sooner but she lay injured in a field for several hours[12][16][17][15]
    • Daniel Teggart (44), was shot fourteen times. Most of the bullets entered his back, allegedly as he lay injured on the ground.[12][18]
    • Noel Phillips (20), shot as he stood opposite the army base.[12][19]
    • Joseph Murphy (41), shot as he stood opposite the army base.[12] Murphy was subsequently taken into army custody and after his release, as he was dying in hospital, he claimed that he had been beaten and shot again while in custody. When his body was exhumed in October 2015, a second bullet was discovered in his body, which activists said corroborated his claim.[20]
    One civilian was shot on 10 August and another four were shot on 11 August:

    • Edward Doherty (28), shot while walking along Whiterock Road.[21]
    • John Laverty (20) and Joseph Corr (43) were shot at separate points at the top of the Whiterock Road. Laverty was shot twice, once in the back and once in the back of the leg. Corr was shot several times and died of his injuries on 27 August.[12][22]
    • John McKerr (49), shot by unknown attackers while standing outside a Catholic church, died of his injuries on 20 August.[13][23][24]
    • Paddy McCarthy (44) got into a confrontation with a group of soldiers. Family allege an empty gun was put in his mouth and the trigger pulled. McCarthy suffered a heart attack and died shortly afterwards.[25][26]
    In February 2015, the conviction of Terry Laverty, younger brother of John, was quashed by the Criminal Cases Review Commission.[27] He had been convicted of riotous behaviour and sentenced to six months on the eye-witness evidence of a private in the Parachute Regiment. The case was referred to court because the sole witness retracted his evidence.[28]


    Joan’s Death
    On August 9th 1971 "Internment without Trial" was introduced by the British Government in Northern Ireland. Men and women, young and old, were arrested and jailed without trial or reason. This was a date that would change the lives of Joan’s family forever. On this August evening the Parachute regiment of the British Army murdered Joan, a 45 year old mother of eight.

    Joan was shot as she left her place of safety and went to the aid of a young boy (Noel Phillips) who was shot and wounded by the same regiment. Joan was shot several times in the head and body, with injuries so severe that part of her face was blown off. Joan's autopsy report indicates that Joan bled to death. Eye witnesses of the events claim Joan was blatantly refused emergency medical attention, even as she cried out for help.

    The murder of Joan, the only woman shot in Ballymurphy during one of the trouble's worse events, left husband Denis without a wife and left eight children without a mother. The extent of Joan’s injuries was so horrific that Denis struggled to identify her body; he finally did on his third attempt aided only by Joan's red hair.

    Joan’s family were in turmoil, not knowing what to do having suddenly lost their wife and mother. Denis, shocked by the situation and panicked by the on going trouble, sent his young daughters Denise (with baby Christopher), Briege, Joan, Maura and Irene to his family in the south of Ireland. Initially they had to endure a stay in a refugee camp, and this is where, having stumbled across the 12o'clock news one evening, Briege and Denise were to find out their mother was dead and had been buried. Both girls, shocked and stunned, only had each other for comfort as they mourned their mother’s death. Joan was branded an IRA woman, a claim that was never true and as a result, her death was not investigated properly.

    cooky1257 likes this.
  14. -alan-

    -alan- pfm Member

    I grew up and lived through most of that era in NI. It was undoubtedly fought as a dirty war on both sides - and I use sides in the widest sense possible: paramilitaries, police, defence forces, politicians and Govt(s). At local level everybody knew that. Maybe it's a case of looking back with older eyes, but the only thing perhaps really surprising is that people were/are surprised at the type and level of involvement by 'Official' agencies. Happens in every warring conflict - always has, and most likely always will.

    Lets just hope the current bunch of clowns trying to rekindle it fail utterly and miserably - thirty years was enough.
    SteveS1 and twotone like this.
  15. gassor

    gassor There may be more posts after this.

    And the paras responsible for the above atrocity? Well, "they were sent to the Bogside area of Derry, Northern Ireland, where British soldiers shot 28 unarmed civilians during a protest march against internment." Bloody Sunday in other words. I now see this is referred to above.
  16. twotone

    twotone pfm Member

    Ballymurphy was the precursor to Bloody Sunday, the same regiment carried out both atrocities, first para.
    gavreid likes this.
  17. Seanm

    Seanm pfm Member

    Looking forward to watching this. I'm glad the level of state involvement in sectarian murder is coming out. No Stone Unturned is good on this: at some point intelligence gathering became indistinguishable from state murder.
    twotone and gavreid like this.
  18. gavreid

    gavreid pfm Member

    And to think the troops were sent in 'to protect the Catholic population'
  19. twotone

    twotone pfm Member

    Just google captain Robert niarac

    Seanm likes this.
  20. Seanm

    Seanm pfm Member

    twotone likes this.

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