Talk:1969 Northern Ireland riots

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WikiProject class rating[edit]

This article was automatically assessed because at least one WikiProject had rated the article as start, and the rating on other projects was brought up to start class. BetacommandBot 16:01, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

Riots before 1969[edit]

It would read better if there was a summary of previous riots going back into the 1800s. Otherwise it comes across that 1969 was the "start". If there is another article on previous riots it should be linked. (talk) 22:03, 10 September 2009 (UTC)

Disagree, Specific article, specific subject. You want the History of Belfast article. Jdorney (talk) 01:08, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

Refs and edting[edit]

Since I first wrote the page new material has been published on the riots - particluarly the IRA's role in it. 'The Lost Revolution' by Scott Millar and Brian Hanley has extensive new info on this. Also I'm going to ref up earlier facts and figures which I didn't do at the time. Jdorney (talk) 12:18, 18 November 2009 (UTC)

Infobox image[edit]

An image is needed for the infobox. Surely we can find a non-free fair use image, which would greatly enhance the page.--Jeanne Boleyn (talk) 10:23, 29 January 2011 (UTC)

I agree. We should also find images for Battle of the Bogside. If you think about it, articles about less-important 21st century events have plenty of images thanks to the internet. If we'd had internet back then we could've had an article like this.
Anyway, post some examples and we'll pick one. ~Asarlaí 16:33, 29 January 2011 (UTC)

February 2011[edit]

While it's good that people have taken the initiative to expand the article, I have some issues with the re-write as it stands. First of all, though I'm hesitant to get into this territory, it's politically biased. The nationalist view only is presented. For instance, loyalists are described throughout as 'mobs', information on attack on Protestant businesses and shooting of loyalists by the IRA have been removed - not NPOV.

Likewise, the background section is long on rhetoric and short on content. The Battle of the Bogside article lays out much more neutrally the background to Catholic grievances and the civil rights movement. Quoting the speeches by O'Neill and Piasley is similarly emotive rather than informative, ie "weren't those unionists awful?". Likewise, the comparison with South Africa is not useful here, for the same reason. There is also too much detail in this section. We don't need a part of the chronology from CAIN cut and pasted here. It's enough to say there was rioting and several loyalist bombs, listing every one is not necessary.

In the section on the riots themelves, a lot of useful detail has been added and that's good. The downside is that the article no longer foregrounds the most important events of the rioting - the burning of Bombay street and other Catholic streets, teh death of Patrick Rooney, the role of the IRA and the Unionist government's perception of its role. This needs to be cleared up. Also some wording has been cut and pasted in from elsewhere, where, in my opinion, the original wording from this article was better.

A map of Belfast city centre is probably needed to direct reader to the geography of the rioting.

We now know a lot more about the IRA's role thanks to Millar and Hanley's, 'The Lost Revolution'. The stuff on the IRA's part in the rioting needs to be updated to reflect this. (I've been meaning to do this myself for a long time).

In the RUC/USC section, it now says the USC used machine guns on Catholic civilians, this is not what is in the original and not what Scarman says. The USC were armed with rifles and opend fire in several domnstrations in provincial towns. This, as the aticle originally said, was what Scarman was referring to. It was the RUC that used the heavy machine guns in Belfast.

Regards, Jdorney (talk) 21:20, 4 February 2011 (UTC)

Regarding the perceived bias:
  • I'm sorry if this seems rude, but I definitely did not remove any info about nationalists shooting Protestants and burning Protestant-owned businesses. I've re-checked the old version just to be sure.
  • The loyalists are described throughout the sources as "mobs". However, if there's agreement that this term is non-neutral, maybe we could use "crowds" or "rioters"?
  • If a source can be found, I'd be happy to add more about the loyalist view.
Regarding the background section:
  • I wasn't sure whether to use the Paisley and O'Neill quotes, but I understand how they may seem "emotive rather than informative". I'd be fine with removing those.
  • I'd be fine with removing the list of bombings too, but I think the rest (aside from the Paisley/O'Neill quotes) is useful background info for those who aren't "in the know".
Regarding the rioting section:
  • This section is laid our roughly in chronological order, so the burning of Bombay Street and death of Patrick Rooney have had to be moved further down.
  • I've added under "Wednesday 13 August" that the RUC "believed they were facing an organised IRA uprising". This is also covered under "Reactions" and "Effects". How do you think we could highlight this more?
I agree with the rest of what you wrote. A map of Belfast would be very useful, but it would need to be a 1960s map, since many of the streets mentioned have since vanished. ~Asarlaí 22:30, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for response. Re the stuff removed, this "the nationalist crowd attacked the RUC and a Protestant-owned business" and this "In Ardoyne a 48-year-old Protestant, David Linton, was killed by a shotgun blast to the face during a riot on Palmer Street."
I like the start made with thinning down the background section. I think we could lose more on each riot leading up to August 1969, though, and have more on the demands of the civil rights movement and the unionist response.
Yes, I think, 'crowds' or 'rioters' would be much better than 'mobs' here.
Re the foregrounding issue, my point is that using a strict chronological point of view may not be the best way to go about it. The article also needs to explain the context of what was happening nad leave out some of the smaller details.
Good point re the map. But even a poor one would show, for instance, where the Falls, Shankill and Ardoyne are in relation to each other and to the city centre.
I'll start looking into the sources on the unionist position and the IRA's part in events. Jdorney (talk) 23:59, 4 February 2011 (UTC)
I agree that this article in places is biased with a lack of NPOV in key areas. Not once does it try to explain why the loyalists protested against or attacked some of the civil rights movements or the constant fears of a renewed IRA campaign after that of the Border Campaign and the Troubles of the early 1920s amongst other things. It seems to imply that loyalists/unionists are too blame for the whole situation when they where only part of the blame.
"If a source can be found, I'd be happy to add more about the loyalist view." - so all the information you've added is from a nationalist/republican viewpoint that doesn't make mention of any loyalist views? This appears to be clear lack of NPOV, meaning this article could be tagged as such. Mabuska (talk) 00:08, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Regarding your first point Jdorney... The killing of David Linton is still there under the "Friday 15 August" section. Also, the line about the "Protestant-owned business" was unsourced and I assumed it was the "car dealership of Protestant Isaac Agnew" (which is mentioned a few lines below, and sourced).
Mabuska, the sources I used are not "nationalist/republican". You can read them for yourself on Google books. Loyalist views are mentioned, but I agree that a bit more could be added. At the start of "Thursday 14 August" it notes that loyalists believed the IRA were attempting an uprising. I've now added to that, that loyalists thought the nationalist attacks were "an attempt to undermine the union". If you have your own sourced info please do add it. ~Asarlaí 00:25, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
People, can we agree to keep this constructive and not make it nationalist/unionist thing? It's best for everyone and the article. Let's deal with POV issues in a non-confrontational way.
I see the David Linton thing now.
But the idea of 'foregrounding' or stressing and explaining the main events is my main point. Presenting the reader with a mass of chronological stuff is confusing. They will miss the most important points. Jdorney (talk) 00:41, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
What do you have in mind? I think it would be best to keep most of the "Rioting in Belfast" section as a roughly chronological narrative. I think it would be more confusing if it wasn't chronological. The "Effects" section can then explain the importance of the events in detail.
To stop some of the main points being lost in the "mass of chronological stuff", how about we write a brief "overview" of the Belfast rioting? It could explain what each group thought was happening (ie. many nationalists thought it was a pogrom, while loyalists and RUC thought it was an uprising), then we could go through the events, and then we could explain their significance/effects. ~Asarlaí 01:12, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
I do not mean to turn it into a "nationalist/unionist" thing, its just how Asarlai made it sound. Peter Taylor's "Loyalists" should delve into the matter. I can get my hands on a copy. I have in my possession a book from before the Troubles which details the problems before it from the time of the original UVF and IRA in Ulster - it may be able to provide information on the deeper routed fears of the unionist community prior to the civil-rights marches. Mabuska (talk) 01:57, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
In the Long-term Effects section, I added a Loyalist perspective from UVF member Eddie Kinner, who was a resident of Dover Street and witnessed the events first-hand. It's from the Peter Taylor book.--Jeanne Boleyn (talk) 08:10, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
@Asarlai, An overview sounds like a good idea - perhap a short summary at the start of each day?. But I think we could comfortably lose some of the detail of each incident and the article would be clearer. @Mabuska, a short para on unionist perceptions of the civil rights movmentwould be useful.Jdorney (talk) 10:51, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
What about having two sub-sections, one dealing with the nationalist viewpoint and the other the unionist viewpoint? That way both views can be clearly set out and explained. The BBC had a program last year or two on the Battle of the Bogside that included views from the DUP's Gregory Campbell etc. and what they felt was happening at the time - if we could get written sources of statements made in the program it would also be benefitial to the article. Mabuska (talk) 11:42, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
That's a good documentary alright. Just my opinion, but I'd be in faovur of keeping things fairly short, so how about paras rather than sections in 'background' for nat and unionist views? Jdorney (talk) 11:52, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Well if we can find enough reliable information that is reliably sourced i don't see why it can't have at least one section dedicated to the viewpoints. Mabuska (talk) 13:38, 5 February 2011 (UTC)
Ok, let's do it first then discuss what we've got. Jdorney (talk) 15:05, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Well, there was a lot of work done during 5th–9th Feb but there hasn't been much since then. Let's discuss what we've got. Is there enough now about the unionist/loyalist view? Have things been summarized well? Have all the important points been highlighted? Could we now raise the article's rating? ~Asarlaí 22:05, 25 February 2011 (UTC)

I don't have much time to go into it today, but I think the rioting section could be made shorter by summarising more and havign less details. Re the loyalist view, not sure, have to look through it again. I'll get back to you tomorrow or monday. Jdorney (talk) 10:57, 26 February 2011 (UTC)


I downgraded this article from the B rating Asarlai gave it to a C rating for the following reasons:

  1. A major contribuator to the article rated it which means the chance of lack of objectivity to the criteria.
  2. Article has clear NPOV problems, which means it doesn't merit a B rating.

Due to the fact the article does have a lot of good sourced information, it still merits a C rating as oppossed to the start class rating. Mabuska (talk) 00:17, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

Bernadette Devlin[edit]

Bernadette Devlin needs to be brought into the picture as she played a prominent role in the Battle of Bogside.--Jeanne Boleyn (talk) 14:47, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

The Battle of the Bogside has its own article though. If there's to be an expansion of the account of her role, it should be there. Jdorney (talk) 16:08, 6 February 2011 (UTC)

Deaths in Dungannon[edit]

In this article it states that there were 8 deaths during the riots, this is inaccurate, as the article itself states that 7 died in belfast, this leaves another to have died elsewhere, which i presume is reffering to the death of anopther man in armagh who was shot dead by the B Specials, giving a total of 8. However there is no mention of the 3 men shot dead by the B specials in Dungannon on the 13th of August as clearly stated on the B special page of Wikipedia. This brings the total to 11, so therefore i am changing the total number of deaths to 11. --PALESTINE1234 (talk) 14:55, 21 July 2011 (UTC)

Ther ar no references on this article or on the Ulster Special Constabulary article to support that claim. If three people had been killd it would most definitly be on the Sutton Index of Deaths or the CAIN chronology. Please don't add it back unless you can back it up with a reliable source. ~Asarlaí 16:53, 21 July 2011 (UTC)

Quoted from the Ulster Special Constabulary page under "USC shootings during the riots" "Shots were fired by the Special Constabulary at Dungiven and Coalisland without fatal casualties. While at Dungannon on 13 August, the B Specials shot and killed three Catholics during rioting and in Armagh, a Catholic man was shot and killed by the B-Specials during a civil disturbance.[69]" Clearly it is there and if not included in this article wikipedia is contradicting itself. --PALESTINE1234 (talk) 15:47, 26 July 2011 (UTC)

The reference used for that quote is the Scarman Report. I'v read the Scarman Report and it says that people wer shot and wounded in Dungannon. It doesn't say that anyone was killd in Dungannon. ~Asarlaí 16:32, 26 July 2011 (UTC)

"Stormont Government"[edit]

A quote by Jack Lynch in the article refers to the "Stormont Government", the definition of which may not be immediately obvious to readers. I have wikilinked it to Executive Committee of the Privy Council of Northern Ireland; please amend that if it is not correct. Regards, Orange Suede Sofa (talk) 19:11, 31 October 2011 (UTC)