Loughgall (@1.57) vs H & W Welders (@4.1)
05-10-2019

Our Prediction:

Loughgall will win

Loughgall – H & W Welders Match Prediction | 05-10-2019 10:00

SAS operations against the IRA also continued. The East Tyrone Brigade continued to be active until the last Provisional IRA ceasefire ten years later.

In 2001 the European Court of Human Rights ruled that ten IRA men, including the eight killed at Loughgall, had their human rights violated by the failure of the British Government to conduct a proper investigation into their deaths.[22] The court did not make any finding that these deaths amounted to unlawful killing.[33] In December 2011, Northern Ireland's Historical Enquiries Team found that not only did the IRA team fire first but that they could not have been safely arrested.

O'Donnell had been released without charges for possession of weapons on two different occasions in the past.[39] Whereas the previous ambushes of IRA men had been well planned by Special Forces, the Clonoe killings owed much to a series of mistakes by the IRA men in question. Two IRA men escaped from the scene, but the four named above were killed. Another four IRA members were killed in an ambush in February 1992. A support vehicle further compromised the getaway by flashing its emergency lights. The IRA men were intercepted by the SAS as they were trying to dump the lorry and escape in cars in the car park of Clonoe Roman Catholic church, whose roof was set on fire by Army flares. After the shooting they drove past the house of Tony Doris, the IRA man killed the previous year, where they fired more shots in the air and were heard to shout, "Up the 'RA, that's for Tony Doris". They had mounted a heavy DShK machine gun on the back of a stolen lorry, driven right to the RUC/British Army station and opened fire with tracer ammunition at the fortified base at point-blank range, when the long-range of the weapon would enable them to fire from a safe distance. No efforts were made to conceal the firing position or the machine gun. The four, Peter Clancy, Kevin Barry O'Donnell, Sean O'Farrell and Patrick Vincent, were killed at Clonoe after an attack on the RUC station in Coalisland. The six attackers gathered on the same spot, instead of vanishing separately.

Background[edit]

A major IRA attack in County Tyrone took place on 20 August 1988, barely a year after Loughall, which ended in the deaths of eight soldiers when a British Army bus was bombed at Curr Road, near Ballygawley.

From mid-1992 up to the 1994 cease fire, IRA units in east and south Tyrone carried out eight mortar attacks against police and military facilities and were also responsible for at least 16 bombings and shootings.

The Volunteers killed at Loughgall were Declan Arthurs (21), Tony Gormley (24), Eugene Kelly (25), Pdraig McKearney (32), Jim Lynagh (31), Gerard O'Callaghan (28), Seamus Donnelly (19) and unit commander Patrick Joseph Kelly (30). This was the IRA's greatest loss of life in a single incident since the days of the Anglo-Irish War (19191922). On 8 May 1987, at least eight members of the brigade launched another attack on the unmanned Loughgall RUC base. However, as their attack was underway, the IRA unit was ambushed by a Special Air Service (SAS) unit. The SAS shot dead eight IRA members and a civilian who had accidentally driven into the ambush. Six IRA members from a supporting unit managed to escape. The IRA unit used the same tactics as it had done in The Birches attack.[10][11] It destroyed a substantial part of the base with a 200lb bomb and raked the building with gunfire.

The NI Horticulture and Plant Breeding Station is set in the Loughgall Manor Estate, surrounded by mature woodlands and overlooking the Lough Gall. In 1947 the estate was purchased from Major-General G.W.R. The estate was established in the late 17th century by Sir Anthony Cope of Hanwell, Oxfordshire and became the Cope family home for 350 years. Templer (later Field Marshal Sir Gerald Templer), a descendant of the original owner, by the (then) Ministry of Agriculture.

Education[edit]

It thinks it can defeat them. Thousands of people attended their funerals, the biggest republican funerals in Northern Ireland since those of the IRA hunger strikers of 1981.[30]Gerry Adams, in his graveside oration, gave a speech stating the British Government understood that it could buy off the government of the Republic of Ireland, which he described as the "shoneen clan" (that is, Anglophile), but added "it does not understand the Jim Lynaghs, the Pdraig McKearneys or the Samus McElwaines. The IRA members killed in the ambush became known as the "Loughgall Martyrs" among IRA supporters.[29] The men's relatives considered their deaths to be part of a deliberate shoot-to-kill policy by the security forces.

Two uninvolved civilians travelling in a car that happened to drive into the scene of the ambush while it was underway were also fired upon by the British forces.

They were also questioned about the 1974 Dublin and Monaghan bombings,[11] and their weapons were checked in relation to forensic evidence from the murders in question.[13] Both protesters and media camped outside Dundalk station. Sir Arthur Galsworthy, then British ambassador to the Republic of Ireland, stressed his concern about the finding of a shotgun and a dagger among the weapons confiscated by the Garda, and the fact that most of the soldiers were in plain clothes, and that the two groups had given different accounts of their purposes of presence within the Republic of Ireland. The British Army Minister, Bob Brown, apologised to the Irish Government, saying the incursion over the border had been a mistake.[8] The British Government, embarrassed by the situation,[12] gave top priority to the immediate release of the soldiers. When it became clear that a trial was unavoidable, the British Government hardened its position, with a member of the Foreign Office proposing economic sanctions against the Republic, and even mooting the creation of a "buffer zone" along the border, which would have created "a no-man's land in which the terrorist could do what they would". The arrest and detention of eight British Army soldiers put Irish Taoiseach Liam Cosgrave and his coalition government in a dilemma; if he released them without charge he was giving a green light for further British military incursions into the Republic, but if he permitted them to be put on trial and they were convicted, diplomatic relations with Britain would be at risk.[8] A report published by Mr Justice Henry Barron in 2006 revealed that the soldiers were questioned whilst in Garda custody about the three murders, especially that of Seamus Ludlow that had been recently committed in the area. The detainees were subsequently moved under heavy armed escort to Dublin, where they were charged by the Special Criminal Court with possession of firearms with intent to endanger life, and for carrying firearms without a certificate.[8] The charges carried a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.[11] The 8 soldiers were released on bail after the British embassy paid 40,000 and a helicopter flew them out of the state. There were concerns that the station could be attacked by a mob or the IRA at any moment seeking to get at the prisoners.

The survivor says that when he located Declan Arthurs and the other scout they were sitting on the roadside monitoring the police station, which at this time (unknown to them) was manned by six SAS men and three officers, including two members of the specialist Headquarters Mobile Support Unit (HMSU) and a local officer in case a member of the public arrived at the barracks door.

Loughgall ambush

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Lynagh's strategy was to start off with one area which the British military did not control, preferably a republican stronghold such as east Tyrone. The first phase of Lynagh's plan to drive out the British security forces from east Tyrone involved destroying isolated rural police stations and then intimidating or killing any building contractors who were employed to rebuild them.[5] Lynagh's plans met strong criticism from senior brigade member Kevin McKenna, who regarded the strategy as "too impractical, too ambitious, and not sustainable" per journalist Ed Moloney. The South Armagh area was considered to be a liberated zone already, since British troops and the RUC could not use the roads there for fear of roadside bombs and long-range harassing fire. In the 1980s, the IRA in East Tyrone and other areas close to the border, such as South Armagh, were following a Maoist military theory[3] devised for Ireland by Jim Lynagh, a high-profile member of the IRA in East Tyrone (but a native of County Monaghan).[4] The theory involved creating "no-go zones" that the British Army and Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) did not control and gradually expanding them. Thus it was from there that the IRA East Tyrone Brigade attacks were launched, with most of them occurring in east Tyrone in areas close to south Armagh, which offered good escape routes.