The British And The North’s Past: When Actions Belie Words

The Broken Elbow heaps scorn on Britain's claim to fair play when engaging with the North's violent past.

Theresa Villiers, NI Secretary of State, in her speech yesterday promising to deal with the North’s troubled past, had this to say:
… the representative of the sovereign Government here I am acutely aware that we have a responsibility to do all that we can to tackle the legacy of the past in this part of the United Kingdom.
And this:
……I will never seek to defend the security forces by defending the indefensible. Where there is evidence of wrongdoing it will be pursued. Everyone is subject to the rule of law.
That same day two years ago, the Derry Daily published the story below. Make your own mind up about which reflects the real mind of the British system:
53 Years After RUC Attack: Sammy Devenney Files To Remain Secret Until 2022
Police files on the investigation into the death of Sammy Devenney, the Derry man who died after being badly beaten in his home by members of the now-disbanded RUC, have been “reclassified” by the Metropolitan Police and are to remain secret for another eight years, it has emerged.

Mr Devenney (42), a father of nine, died on 16 July, 1969 from injuries sustained in the 19 April attack in his William Street home in which a number of his children, eight of whom were in the house at the time, were also beaten.
Sammy Devenney – his family say that RUC men beat him to death but a British report on the incident has been kept secret
In a report issued in October 2001, the Office Police Ombudsman upheld the family’s complaint the RUC never communicated to them directly about the events of that night.

Police Ombudsman Nuala O’Loan revealed her Office had located a complete copy of the report of an investigation into the incident carried out by Metropolitan Police officers, under the direction of Detective Chief Superintendent Kenneth Drury, which was never before made public and which acknowledged and detailed attacks by RUC officers on the family.

Ms O’Loan said the Drury investigation could neither prove nor disprove the allegation that Mr. Devenney’s death had resulted from the RUC attack on him and concluded it would not be possible “after all this time” to pursue disciplinary action against the officers involved.

The Pat Finucane Centre, the Derry-based human rights group representing the Devenney family, has revealed a Freedom of Information request for the investigation files to be made public was turned down by the Metropolitan Police who said by doing so would “not be in the public’s interest.”

Sarah Duddy, from the Pat Finucane Centre, said the family were anxious to find out what information on the attack was contained in the files and the “cover up” that followed.

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Anthony McIntyre

Former IRA prisoner, spent 18 years in Long Kesh. Free Speech advocate, writer, historian, humanist, and researcher.

1 comment to ''The British And The North’s Past: When Actions Belie Words"

  1. Pontus Pilate Paisley (Dr. No)
    People’s encounters with religions,
    Rarely end well – if ever.
    As human history constantly re-tells,
    Religions will be the end of us.
    No more, never say never again.
    For it must have occurred to you,
    During your dwindling winter years.
    It must have crossed your mind;
    All those lost lives
    It must have occurred to you,
    Standing on the threshold of your tomb;
    ‘’ Was most of my life a lie?’’
    Before Democracy’s treatise accepted.
    It must have occurred to you
    Civil Rights, the 60’s bright promise.
    It has often occurred to we;
    What would have happened?
    How non-sectarian might we be?
    How was this Great Liberator not seen?
    All those lost lives
    Ian Paisley, Ulster, Irelands lost Dr. King


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