Unfinished business finished


Daily Ireland carry this story on the completion of an iconic mural in Derry.

“The mural of Annette McGavigan – a 14-year-old school girl shot dead by a British soldier on a Derry street in 1971 – had been deliberately left an unfinished work until the guns of the Troubles had become a thing of the past.
The huge mural on a gable wall in Derry’s Bogside will be completed today.
The Bogside artists did not paint a butterfly outline on the top left of the mural until they were satisfied that peace had been achieved in the North.”

While there is no doubt that we are still a long way off from a permanent and agreed solution to our troubles, it is good to remember that we have indeed come a long way. It’s difficult to feel that the past is behind us, and incidents like yesterday’s series of hoax bomb alerts are also a reminder of days that we dont want to re-visit. I don’t know the full story of this particular muriel, but it’s completion would seem to be a sign of increasing comfort with our general absence of violence.

  • While there is no doubt that we are still a long way off from a permanent and agreed solution to our troubles, it is good to remember that we have indeed come a long way. A pity Annette McGavigan didn’t come a long way too. She’d be 49 now. Lost lives. I wonder who, besides Michael McGoldrick’s father, found his out of the Troubles.

  • Shore Road Resident

    OH THE HUMANITY!

  • The Butterfly has always been a symbol of freedom, made famous by papillion, and is a good icon for the irish struggle.

  • geezey geezmore

    When the people of the Bogside start erecting murals in memory of those murdered by the Provos they supported, protected and nurtured (who killed the majority of people to die in the conflict), then maybe we’ll be close to reconciliation.
    Republicans have the most blood on their hands by far (that is a statistical fact) and no amount of mural painting and self pity can change that.
    The only grim consolation is that they got so very little out of it.

  • The Devil

    Hell if they are going to make us wait years on a mural they at least could have painted a decent one, the Sisten Chapel and my wifes kitchen were both painted quicker.

  • stan

    Wonderful artist talent from the Bogside artists.

  • Miss Fitz

    The Devil is in the detail once more.

    If you take the time to read the article, you will find that the mural was painted years ago, but that it wasnt finished until now.

    There was definitely a clue in the title with the word: ‘Unfinished’

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Gezeey: “Republicans have the most blood on their hands by far (that is a statistical fact) and no amount of mural painting and self pity can change that.”

    Actually, I think you will find that the Loyalists have more innocent (i.e. non-combatant” blood on their hands, and no amount of mock outrage and self-righteousness can change that.

  • Doctor Who

    As usual Dread comes up with “the history of the teoubles according to a f´ffing provo”

    here are his rules

    1. If you where killed while a member of HM armed forces, you don´t count.

    2. If you where a police man shot in the back, booby trapped in a car, drove over a land mine etc. you don´t count.

    3. If you where a part time soldier caught up in an IRA explosion and blown to smithereens you don´t count.

    4. If you where a democratically elected MP or councillor and murdered in front of your Boys Brigade troop, no. you don´t count.

    5. If you where a milk man and delivered milk to the local station, well you where a legitamate target and you don´t count. It was your own fault.

    6. If you where a janitor in a Police station and while your driving your Kids to school, your car is blown to bits along with your family, agin you don´t count.

    And you know why you don´t count, because Dread and his fellow Provos, the ones who killed you said so.

  • terry badger hands

    A mural remembering a 14 year old girl, and look at the comments of Unionists on here. LOL. No wonder you are going nowhere, fast.

  • Miss Fitz

    Shared commemoration was always going to be a difficult process, and it will require a lot of effort to show respect on all sides.

    The completion of this mural was a significant step forward in the acceptance of peace being established. If we could move on now, accept that life has changed and the war is over, we will being going in the right direction.

  • geezey geezmore

    “A mural remembering a 14 year old girl, and look at the comments of Unionists on here. LOL.”

    You lost, guys. You’re actually further away from a united Ireland than when you started your grubby sectarian turf war. Some achievement. ‘Lost lives?’.
    You should know about it. You took the majority of the lives in in the ‘war’ and achieved the enshrinement of the union and, erm, you *might* be allowed to have a few ministries in a devolved Northern Ireland answerable to Westminster IF Paisley says yes and even then, he’ll be in charge. After throwing away all your weapons (not a bullet. not an ounce. ROFL), begging for a return to devolution (no return to Stormont. LOL) and gaining only the base sectarian ‘satisfaction’ of dehumanising your neighbours to the point you’re not only justifying their cold blooded murder, you’re (on the evidence of this thread) retrospectively satisfied with it. You’re pathetic, you’re bitter but you thankully you lost. The Provos were your best shot and the Brits were directing the whole thing through penetration anyway. Not wonder you’re so angry. A mural singling out one fatality changes nothing: You lost. 🙂

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Dr. Who: “1. If you where killed while a member of HM armed forces, you don´t count. ”

    Not as a non-combatant, no, they wouldn’t… the gun they’re toting has something to do with that.

    Dr. Who: ” If you where a democratically elected MP or councillor and murdered in front of your Boys Brigade troop, no. you don´t count. ”

    *BZZZZZZZZZZT!* Thank you for playing, but wrong answer — politicians, while perhaps in some cases the most deserving, are not combatants. Goes for five and six.

    Short answer, Dr. Who, is you don’t know me, so stop pretending to know what or how I think — it will save you embaressment and effort, since, as evidenced by your labors in the past, being clever just isn’t your strong suit.

    Anyway, its not my analysis, but a cross tabulation of the data in the Sutton index.

    To be specific, the database has a tabulation of 3523 deaths relating to the Troubles. The majority of deaths caused by Republicans were in the category of “British security.” The majority of deaths caused by Loyalists are in the category of “Civilian.” As a side note, the Loyalists not only killed a greater number of civilian as a percentage of their total activity, but, despite being less active than the Republicans, actually killed a greater number of civilians in “gross” terms… something about the “any taig will do” mentality of some folks, most likely.

    Likewise, your ignorance vis-a-vis the post I was replying to — a trait of yours I am used to at this date, but still a little annoying — played at statistics and fact. Demonstrating that there are other statistical facts that might cause Geezey’s crowing to pause does not make me a partisan on either side.

  • Kathy_C

    Hi all,

    It is a lovely mural of a young Irish girl who was killed by a british soldier. I think finishing the mural and stating that there is peace in northern Ireland is more of a hope by the aritist than reality…. The Irish youth are still being killed in the north…whether it be by a british soldier loyal to the crown like poor Annette or recently those who claim loyality to the british crown and beat a young Irish lad to death. Peace is something that is hoped for…but not there yet…

  • An interesting sub group on the hierarchy of victims is the maount of IRA/RIRA/OIRA/CIRA/INLA killed by same. I think they bagged more of their own than the “security forces/UUP/UVF/DUP/UFF.

    Geezey: You make some good points (the ones I have already made) but your conclusion is wrong. The Provos won. The people, or many of them, lost.

    Miss Fitz: it is not over. Annette McGavigan and all like her have their rights. Martin McGuinness, Ian Paisley and others can tell us to move on. But how should the McGavigan family and all like them move on? In fact, if the politicians move on, fucked off to be more precise, maybe the world would be better. The only politician I know who can come out of all of this with head held high is John Hume.

  • Paul

    Dread C., the most thorough statistical analysis I’ve seen relating to the troubles was done by the Peace Studies Dept, NUU. It’s findings were totally at odds with yours, with Republican terrorists responsible for the majority of deaths in every category, total deaths, deaths of innocent civilians, even deaths of Catholics and even, believe or not, deaths of republicans. They didn’t have any axes to grind. They were not engaged in an Orwellian rewriting history project.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Paul: “the most thorough statistical analysis I’ve seen relating to the troubles was done by the Peace Studies Dept, NUU. It’s findings were totally at odds with yours, with Republican terrorists responsible for the majority of deaths in every category, total deaths, deaths of innocent civilians, even deaths of Catholics and even, believe or not, deaths of republicans. They didn’t have any axes to grind. They were not engaged in an Orwellian rewriting history project. ”

    Citation, please — at least enough to do a web search.

    Saying a study exists that proves your point. I referenced the Sutton Database — I confess I did not link it, but anyone can find it with just a modicum of effort. This study, however… does it have a title? Who are its authors? What were their methodology. Without these items and a few more, your claim that they were not “indulging in an Orwellian rewriting of history” is just so much vaporware. Give me something to look at and I will look.

    I will submit that the Sutton database covers a finite period of time and there may be some shifting… but even if you lump in the “unknowns” with the Republican totals, Loyalists still have the highest “gross” total, which is damning, insofar as they were less active (or perhaps less competant) than the Republicans.

  • Miss Fitz

    Bear in mind these dead
    I can find no plainer words
    John Hewitt

    http://cain.ulst.ac.uk/sutton/

  • Paul

    I apologise D.C., Loyalist murderers did slightly out-murder Republican murderers in murdering civilians. That’s OK then, the Provos were the good guys, let’s get a few more murals up celebrating them. Seven hundred odd is still a pretty big number of murdered civilians. Going by the figures in the Sutton index the innocent civilians lost.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Paul: “I apologise D.C., Loyalist murderers did slightly out-murder Republican murderers in murdering civilians. That’s OK then, the Provos were the good guys, let’s get a few more murals up celebrating them.”

    Hardly. But is someone wanted to play games of “statistical fact.” Before one issues manifestos regarding the mote in their neighbor’s eye, should they not concern themselves with the plank in their own first? Claiming superiority in this sort of scenario invites comeuppance.

    Paul: “Seven hundred odd is still a pretty big number of murdered civilians. Going by the figures in the Sutton index the innocent civilians lost. ”

    Agreed. However, the disproportionately large number of civilians killed by Loyalists suggests that no effort was made to engage Republican paramilitaries, but, rather, a terror campaign, possibly state-sponsored, in the pattern of UK campaigns in Kenya and Aden was undertaken. Looking at the chart, I would submit that the Loyalists were not at war with the Republican paramilitaries, but with the civilian population.

  • m

    While some still enjoy picking through the entrails of the past what I find morew interesting is the amount of ‘young’ people now living the troubles via historic community proxy.

  • Doctor Who

    “Short answer, Dr. Who, is you don’t know me, so stop pretending to know what or how I think—it will save you embaressment and effort, since, as evidenced by your labors in the past, being clever just isn’t your strong suit. ”

    Dreary Dread HA! HA! HA!

    Compare the number of “combatants” killed by the Republican terrorists to that of Republican terrorists killed by security services. No contest is there clever dick!

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Dr. Who: “Compare the number of “combatants” killed by the Republican terrorists to that of Republican terrorists killed by security services. No contest is there clever dick!”

    Did I say there way, Doc? The whole point of the post was to illustrate a truth about statistics.

    If you need a hint, perhaps you should re-read your Samuel Clemens…

    However, being as hopelessly mired in the narrow zero-sum mentality, it will probably elude you, so lets keep it simple for you:

    “There are three sorts of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics.” If you look hard enough, there is *ALWAYS* a statistic to support an arguement, even with an honest sample, such as the Sutton database.