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Explain how Bloody Sunday created a bigger argument between two clashing communities

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Ireland coursework Q2 One of the most memorable events in Irish history, providing a torrent of conflict and on-going arguments between nationalists and unionists, was an event named "Bloody Sunday." In an attempt to avoid further conflict following the partition of Ireland, many marches were made illegal by the Special Powers act. This meant that when civil rights groups wanted to protest about issues such as internment (people going straight to prison without a trial), it was difficult to express their views. However, in 1972, local MP of Derry, Ivan Cooper, organized a civil rights march against internment. Cooper and others believed it was unfair that Nationalists were treated like second class citizens in Northern Ireland, and decided the best way to get the Governments attention was to take part in a march. It took place on Sunday 30th January 1972, and by the end of the day 13 civilians were shot dead, by British army bullets. Months later a victim died from his injuries, making 14 deaths. ...read more.


This meant that Nationalists could not put forward their views as the Government would not let them. Even now, historians are trying to put together what really happened on Bloody Sunday, but there have been many sources explaining what they thought had happened. It is believed that the British government had let the march go unchallenged, but that the marchers must not be allowed outside the Catholic Bogside area. Barriers were put up so the marchers would keep within the Bogside. The 1st Parachute Regiment, or mainly known as 1 Para, were there to deal with any violent rioters. A very famous source was a Catholic Priest, Father Bradley. In source I, talking about the start of the shooting he stated that "they shot indiscriminately" [without choosing targets] and that he saw "only the Army shooting." Also several of the people in the march were shot in the back; this means that the army shot people who were fleeing the scene; people who were not fighting against them. ...read more.


Bloody Sunday was a huge catastrophe, which brought to attention the awful way the British Government handled situations and also brought to light the horrible ways in which nationalists were treated. Because of this scandal, the failure and hatred of the British Government would me passed down throughout generations of nationalists, and even now there are still reports looking in to what exactly happened on Bloody Sunday. The Widgery report was a white-wash - A report that looked into Bloody Sunday and what occurred, and who was to blame, left only a small amount of time to examine the evidence, and reported that the army were not seen as responsible. Because of this report there was no chance ever of justice for the Nationalists. The Nationalists grew increasingly angry with the British Government and passing down the hatred through generations meant that now in Northern Ireland today, people are still fighting against the British Government - you couldn't work with a government that had treated your community badly in the past - and they still have a need for justice and for closure today. ...read more.

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