• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Why has bloody sunday been represented in such different ways?

Free essay example:

Classwork

5.1.07

                              Why have the events in “Bloody Sunday”

                                Been interpreted in such different

                                                ways.

The events that happened in Derry 30th, January 1972 have led to much controversy that an official report will not be made until 2007, 35 years later there was meant to be a peaceful march from Creggan to Guild-hall. The army stopped the march going to guild-hall which made “yob-os” furious which caused them to throw missiles and shout insults. One of the main reasons for such controversy is that the army did not need to attack with such brute force and certainly did not need live ammunition. The Para-troopers claimed they were attacked and shot at but the Seville inquiry stated that no weapons were found.

In source A, John Mullin an Irish correspondent gives a slightly bias view bloody Sunday but a very informative and reliable account, this was written in 1999 after the new inquiry, which may of led him to his opinion, this also makes it more bias as he already knows the facts and he writes almost 20 years after the event.  You can tell that the authors view is biased as he uses strong words to make you fell sympathetic for the marchers and be angry towards the British army. John Mullin uses words like “innocent” and “defenseless” to describe how helpless the marchers and how vicious the army were. John Mullin has developed sympathy as he probably had to ask them about the Bloody Sunday incident and to give their view, which could lead him to become more bias. I think this source is reliable as a lot of information is used even though it is trying to prosecute the Para-troopers. Another reason for this source being more reliable is that it is written for a formal, Broadsheet paper called the guardian, so information will not be blown out of proportion.

Source B is from an eyewitness account, Edward Daly a Bishop, talks about how he ran away from the gunfire, he gives a bias but reliable account when he is interviewed by the Bloody Sunday investigation, as he is an  eyewitness he will know what it was like to see innocent people getting killed by the army and how terrifying it must have been, which could also imply why his view would be bias but he is asked much later on about the incident so he might not be able to recollect everything he saw. Daly mentions how innocent people were shot, he mentions how a boy 16-17 years old was running next to him laughing and smiling then he heard a gunshot and he looked around the “boy fell on his face” he states “I knew they were live bullets” he specifically tells them this piece of information because he knows how shocking it was as a teenager who thought it was not serious and even had his back t6o the army was then shot in the back, trying to give you a clear image that the army was brutal and did not aim according the “yellow card”

Source C is a news interview on ITN, 1972. Wilford is the officer of the 1st Battalion of Parachute regiment the interview says almost entirely the opposite to the other two sources. Wilford claims that the Gunmen where hit, but his excuse for not being able to find any weapons is that they must have been hidden by comrades. Even more controversial is that Wilford says that excessive force was used because they were being shot at. According to Wilford the Shooting were from the flats, but later knowledge proved, that the victims all died on the ground, proving the controversy because the people who were murdered were not in flats but helpless marchers trying to escape. This source would be the least reliable and by far the most bias, because Wilford has to make it seem that the people died were gunmen, and that the reason for using live ammunition was to protect themselves or him and the whole British Army would be frowned upon and in serious trouble. What led me to this view were his terrible excuses and inaccurate information, he uses terrible excuses like “we came under fire from flats the flats and petrol bombs” and inaccurate information such as “3 gunmen were hit, but no weapons were found”.

There are several reasons to such different interpretations as the incident would leave one side with terrible consequences, troops could be sent out of Ireland but if the Irish are found guilty for shootings and bombings, like Wilford claims, a lot of conflict would reside in Ireland once again. The correspondent would be the most reliable of the three, as his account would be the least bias as he knows the whole story of the previous conflicts and what troops had to put up with, but he would also know the families and feel sympathy towards them, but unlike the other two he does not need to give a bias report, he only needs to inform, this would give his account, source A, more reliability.  

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Northern Ireland 1965-85 section.

(?)
Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Related GCSE History Skills and Knowledge Essays

See our best essays

Related GCSE Northern Ireland 1965-85 essays

  1. Sunday January On 30, 1972, in an incident since known as Bloody Sunday, twenty-seven ...

    as Bloody Sunday, twenty-seven people were shot by British soldiers after a civil rights march in the Bogside area of the city of Derry, Northern Ireland. The march was organized by Derry MP Ivan Cooper to protest the internment of Irishmen in British occupied Northern Ireland.

  2. bloody sunday assignment 1

    was created. In this General election Sinn Fein was elected and claimed 73/105 seats. They had the choice to go for Home Rule, British Rule or Complete Independence. The vote was unanimous, they chose Complete Independence. This proved to be a major turning point.

  1. bloody sunday assignment 2

    The differences between the interpretations led only to more violence in Northern Ireland. There was a complete breakdown of law, the IRA began to attack mainland Britain, causing the Unionists to become even more extreme in their actions. All these consequences supported the British Army's interpretation of the events.

  2. What happened on Bloody Sunday?

    Bogside', which took place the Bogside area of Derry in August 1969. The mural shows a young boy with a gas mask, which he used to protect himself from CS gas that the RUC used. He is also holding a petrol bomb, a common weapon used by residents to deter the police and army from the area.

  1. The events that occurred in Derry on the 30th January 1972 became known as ...

    Also in the article it says how the former Paratroopers and their supporters were incensed at the release of the report where as Nationalists and their families triumphed at the news, the paratroopers believed it was part of a piecemeal.

  2. Report: Events of Bloody Sunday

    After being proof read on looked over many times it came to a notable conclusion that the Widgery Report had many faults and failings within it. A notable fault with Lord Widgery's conclusions is that they could not be matched with the accounts and findings within his initial report.

  1. The build up to Bloody Sunday, and why it happened.

    On the 4th of November The British army moved into the Bogside area and Creggan and made their way into homes taking 17 men away from internment. The following day Derry came to a holt, many people went on strike.

  2. The events that occurred in Derry on 30th January 1972 became known as 'Bloody ...

    The ex-paratroopers had to fight for the right to give evidence and remain unidentified, though Lord Saville wanted them to be identified. There are people who think that the inquiry is an absolute disaster. A former soldier said that the new evidence was rubbish.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work