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UPS!

UK to pay victims over 1972 Bloody Sunday massacre

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Britain said Thursday it will offer compensation payments to the families of people killed and wounded on Bloody Sunday, a nearly 40-year-old massacre by British paratroopers in Northern Ireland that fueled Irish Catholic support for the IRA.

Thirteen people were killed and 14 wounded on Jan. 30, 1972, in Londonderry when the soldiers opened fire on a Catholic crowd demonstrating against Britain's detention without trial of Irish Republican Army suspects. Britain compounded local fury by hastily ruling that the soldiers, none of whom were wounded, were responding to IRA attacks and targeting gunmen.

 

Last year, Prime Minister David Cameron apologized after a 12-year investigation found that the soldiers were not under attack and fired without justification on unarmed civilians, many of whom were fleeing or aiding wounded.

Britain's Defense Ministry confirmed Thursday it has written to lawyers representing the Londonderry victims' families seeking terms for financial payments. It offered no details of potential payouts.

 

"We acknowledge the pain felt by these families for nearly 40 years, and that members of the armed forces acted wrongly. For that, the government is deeply sorry," the ministry said in a statement.

Peter Madden, a Belfast lawyer who represents many of the victims' families, said negotiations would open soon with the British government to put a price both on the lives lost and maimed and on the damage caused to victims' reputations by the British Army's "shameful allegations" that they were armed IRA members.

But some families immediately rejected any offer of financial compensation, stressing they want criminal prosecutions of those who opened fire. Nobody has ever been charged over the 13 killings.

 

"It is repulsive. Offensive. Not now, nor at any time will I accept money," said Linda Nash, whose 19-year-old brother William was shot fatally through the chest. "I've already told my legal team I want to go forward with prosecutions."

Nash noted that Britain in the early 1970s had offered her mother a cursory compensation payment of 250 pounds, about $625 at the time. "She didn't take it then and I will be doing the same," she said.

 

Madden said most families involved received "derisory and wholly inappropriate" payments from Britain in 1974, but that would have no bearing on the upcoming negotiations.

The Bloody Sunday Inquiry, authorized by former Prime Minister Tony Blair in the immediate build-up to the Good Friday peace accord of 1998, was empowered to find the truth behind the British Army's worst act of violence in Northern Ireland. Families of the dead had demanded such a probe for decades.

 

The investigation led by English judge Lord Saville produced a 5,000-page report based on evidence from 921 witnesses, 2,500 written statements and 60 volumes of written evidence. It cost nearly 200 million pounds ($300 million).

Saville gave the ex-paratroopers, now in their 60s and 70s, broad protections from criminal charges as well as anonymity in the witness box, citing the risk that IRA dissidents might target them in retaliation.

However legal experts say wiggle room remains for prosecutions and, more likely, civil lawsuits against the retired soldiers, particularly those who were found to have lied during their testimony.

 

Thoughts?

Funny how this has taken 39 years to happen and most those involved are gray and dying. I liked how the women turned the money down, fuck the change they need to file civil and actually get what they should be compensated.

 

My question is what are you guys thoughts are charging those involved? Was this not a war crime, not to be cliche and bring Nazi's into any argument but to this day the world still hunts down ninty year old SS men and putting them in jail, why should these British soilders not be treated the same?

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Funny how 80 something people look at a thread and yet have nothing to say.

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While I am happy the families are getting something and the Crown is admitting fault; 40yrs later and in view of the larger implications it still seems like 5p and half a potato.

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Yes I understand that and thats how I see it as well.

 

I was more interested in your thoughts on whether or not the soilders/paratroopers should be tried as war criminals or not.

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How about holding the military responsible? Unless they were operating outside the chain of command, that is.

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^ Thats isnt a bad idea either Shai, but still it goes back to the whole ''I was just doing my duty'' arguement. They knew they were firing into civilians, and they knew the IRA wasnt sending slugs their way.

 

Even if commanded by whoever upstairs to do so individuals, as well as those over them have to be held responsible.

 

I just feel this is no diffrent then a concentration camp guard, or a Slovak murder man.

Although its nice they are finally admitting fault its 40 years later and these families have been absent their sisters,brothers,daughters and sons every day since.

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As for how I feel about the topic...too little, too late.

 

I read a book recently comprised of interviews with regular citizens in Belfast, and it was pretty interesting. Definitely some sad stories in there.

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What was the name of the book?

 

Obviously ive very interested in these matters.

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Thatd be awsome, id really appreaciate that man.

Pm me if you manage to get your hands on it.

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Not many would get involved in this sort of politics man, it runs deep for alot of people. This sorta thing always gives me the impression Cameron is just trying to buy the innocence of the UK back or something to that extent..

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Definatly a political pundit, it makes you wonder how these things just come about 40 years later.

 

Maby they just asusme its been so long most of those involved have died or are senile by now.

People dont pay attention to this shit as much because its white people killing white people, its just as sectarian as any but its in a corner of the world no one knows more about then leprachans, four leaf clovers and alcoholics.

 

Just like the Aremenians, no one seems to care because its a smaller nation no one should care about.

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