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The border April 18, 2017

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.

Thanks to BH for sending a link to this piece by the author of Bombs, Bullets And The Border, Patrick Mulroe, in the Irish News. A very thought provoking piece it is too. For example…

Some roads were closed and then reopened dozens of times. Irish minister for justice Desmond O’Malley, a staunch critic of the IRA, cited the ‘cratering’ of border roads as a significant element in radicalising border communities, arguing “the simple unchallengeable fact about trouble in border areas is that there was no trouble of any kind worth mentioning until the unionist administration, for their own political purposes, persuaded a credulous British government to send out the British army to implement a policy of ‘cratering’ roads in border areas”.

Statistics gleaned from archival research support O’Malley’s argument. Before internment, there were on average four border incidents a month; after internment there were 16; after ‘cratering’ there were 33.

Mulroe argues that all this has implications for the future, particularly in light of Brexit. Difficult to disagree.


1. Seán Ó Murchadha - April 18, 2017

Henry Kelly, in his book ‘How Stormont Fell’ from the 1970s, has the British Army saying the same thing as O’Malley said regarding the madness of blowing up border roads. I remember, at the time of the campaign to reopen the border roads in the early 90s, quoting Kelly’s book in a letter to some newspaper or to RTÉ Radio 1. Needless to say, the letter never got published.

Liked by 1 person

WorldbyStorm - April 19, 2017

It was an act of wanton vandalism and stupidity, wasn’t it, blowing up the roads… I’ve never understood it.


2. roddy - April 19, 2017

In my childhood,I remember Maeve Mulvenna singing a song,the first line of which was “Basil Brook it is my name and with my orange sash I came” and the last line was “and the border will be blown up to the sky”!


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