Posted By: June 01, 2022



Distributed to Congress by Irish National Caucus



Merrion Press. Kildare, Ireland. (2022). Page 216


This weaponry and intelligence were used repeatedly to kill Catholic civilians.  In addition, Whitehall, the NIO, and the MoD knew there was collusion both in weapons thefts and in murderous attacks.  Combating such collusion was never a priority, and so many people lost their lives.  The British knew that the UDR was fatally penetrated by loyalist paramilitaries, with whom they had formed a tactical alliance to defeat the IRA.


The decision to set up full-time battalions of the UDR was made at the specific request of loyalist paramilitaries.  At the same time, the British feared that the UDR could readily prove disloyal and turn their guns on British officers.  They distrusted the regiment to the extent that there was a policy whereby only regular British soldiers could be in command. Despite such precautions, there was a disproportionate rate of criminality within the heavily-armed ranks of the UDR. This was so damaging as to require a policy of erasing the UDR membership of personnel appearing before the courts.

For the NIO, the MoD, and Whitehall the priority was defeating the IRA, which meant turning a blind eye to loyalist violence.  While the UDR’s history is promoted as a noble tradition of defending the community, in the eyes of many in the Catholic, Nationalist, or Republican communities, the priority for the UDR was maintaining the dominant position of the unionist community.  For many people, the UDR was simply the B Specials with better weapons.