UTV To Air Bloody Sunday Documentary
UTV’s Mark McFadden dramatically revisits the Bloody Sunday shootings in a special Insight documentary Bloody Justice this Monday 14 June at 8pm and asks why Lord Saville’s Tribunal of Inquiry has taken so long and cost so much.
Mark McFadden, UTV’s North West Correspondent said: “The Saville Report into the events of Bloody Sunday was meant to lay controversy to rest but 12 years and hundreds of millions of pounds later Saville has become the subject of controversy but has the Tribunal been worthwhile?
“Bloody Justice explores a number of key issues that the Saville Report has been examining including the dramatic moments when the Paratroopers stormed into Rossville Street, the Paras’ claims that they shot at armed IRA men and the Bloody Sunday families’ belief that the shootings were sanctioned and planned at the very top of Government.”
Bloody Sunday campaigner Eamonn McCann says that this belief that the shooting was sanctioned from the top of Government is something the Saville Inquiry finds hard to substantiate. Eamonn McCann tells UTV: “Lord Saville may have some difficulty trying to trace how far up the chain of military and political command responsibility for Bloody Sunday goes because there’s simply an absence of evidence.”
Yet the families maintain there was a high-level conspiracy to send in the Parachute Regiment and use lethal force. Mickey McKinney, whose brother Willie was shot dead in GlenfadaPark, says: “This regiment didn’t come to Derry on their own. There was somebody sitting with suits on them in the realms of power and have made this happen. I certainly believe it goes all the way to the top.”
The progamme also looks at the legacy of Bloody Sunday and how it sparked the worst two years of The Troubles and became a festering wound in Northern Ireland politics.
Speaking to Mark McFadden, Tony Doherty whose father Paddy was shot dead on Bloody Sunday talks about how Bloody Sunday helped create a recruiting sergeant for the Provisional IRA. Tony Doherty said: “When I went to prison I was amazed upon talking to many of the prisoners from Derry, but not just from Derry, and whose primary motivation upon becoming involved in the IRA was their experience of Bloody Sunday.”
Mark McFadden also speaks to military analyst Colonel Tim Collins, renowned legal commentator Joshua Rozenberg, leading loyalist Frankie Gallagher and the families of those who died.
Colonel Tim Collins, who went into combat alongside many of the Bloody Sunday paratroopers, says the soldiers shot dead innocent, unarmed civilians and admits that Bloody Sunday was a black day for the British Army. Colonel Tim Collins said: “It was a shameful day. It was something that the rest of the Army looked at as a perfect example of how not to do it.”
Mark McFadden said: “After all the time and money spent on Lord Saville’s Tribunal, the inquiry may end up telling us what we already know but this Insight Special ultimately asks one highly important question – will we ever really know the full story behind Bloody Sunday?”
Legal Commentator Joshua Rozenberg explains: “There’s no reason why it should have been a poison chalice. Doing a public inquiry is in itself a good thing to have on the CV. But doing it and taking this long over it – inexplicably, so far – doesn’t do you any good at all. What we really want to know is who was responsible for this killing, this entirely unjustified killing on the streets of the United Kingdom. This inquiry will fail unless it answers the big questions about how this happened, why it happened, not who shot whom.”
The Insight Special, Bloody Justice is on Monday 14 June on UTV at 8pm.