Ulster Defence Association

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The Ulster Defence Association (UDA) is a loyalist paramilitary organisation in Northern Ireland. It was founded in 1971 as an umbrella organisation for a number of existing loyalist groups. It remained legal until 1991.[1]

Contents

Origin

According to journalist Martin Dillon, the UDA emerged during the early years of the Troubles out of conversations involving the unionist politician William Craig after he was rebuffed in meetings with the Ulster Volunteer Force in 1970. he then turned turned his attention to the idea of a new paramilitary organisation with a legal framework, and held discussions with loyalist figures including William McGrath, John McKeague, Charles Harding Smith and Tommy Herron.[2]

In July 1971, Harding Smith, the head of the Woodvale Defence Association was involved in drafting a statement calling for loyalists to form themselves into armed platoons of 20 to be integrated into an incipient command structure.[3]

The formation of the Ulster Defence Association was proposed in September 1971 as an umbrella organisation for the various 'Protestant Defence Associations'.[4]

Structure and Personnel

According to the Pat Finucane Review, by Sir Desmond de Silva QC:

The UDA structure was divided into six geographical areas during the late 1980s (Londonderry, South-East Antrim, North Belfast, East Belfast, West Belfast and South Belfast).[11] Each geographical area was commanded by a UDA 'Brigadier' and sometimes also had a designated 'Military Commander', 'Intelligence Officer' and 'Quartermaster'. The six UDA Brigadiers formed an 'Inner Council', which held meetings that were sometimes also attended by other leading UDA figures. In practice, however, the degree of central control exercised by the Inner Council was limited: the Brigadiers supposedly in command of their areas sometimes had little influence over the younger gangs.[5]

Chairman

West Belfast Brigadier

West Belfast UDA

According to the De Silva Review, In West Belfast, the UDA were further sub-divided into 'Coys' and the Woodvale Defence Association (WDA). In practice, these structures were loose and highly changeable."[5]

North Belfast Brigadier

East Belfast Brigadier

South Belfast Brigadier

South-East Antrim Brigadier

Londonderry and North Antrim Brigadier

External Resources

Notes

  1. Ulster Defence Association, Northern Ireland: The Troubles - Fact Files, BBC, accessed 21 November 2001.
  2. Martin Dillon, The Trigger Men, Mainstream Publishing, 2003, p.173.
  3. Martin Dillon, The Trigger Men, Mainstream Publishing, 2003, p.183.
  4. Colin Crawford, Inside the UDA: Volunteers and Violence, Pluto Ireland, 2003, p.20.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Sir Desmond de Silva, Volume 1 - Chapter 2: The historical and political context, Pat Finucane Review, 12 December 2012.
  6. Robert Fisk, The Point of No Return, The Strike which broke the British in Ulster, André Deutsch, 1975, p.355.
  7. Martin Dillon, The Trigger Men, Mainstream Publishing, 2003, p.183.
  8. W.D. Flackes, Sydney Elliot, Northern Ireland: A Political Directory, Blackstaff Press, 1989, p.270.
  9. Alan Murray, YOUNG BLOODS TILL UDA'S KILLING FIELDS, The Guardian, 11 August 1992.
  10. Alan Murray, YOUNG BLOODS TILL UDA'S KILLING FIELDS, The Guardian, 11 August 1992.
  11. Ian S. Wood, Crimes of Loyalty, A History of the UDA, Edinburgh University Press, 2006, p.155.
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 12.4 12.5 12.6 12.7 Rosie Cowan, Too many chiefs led to loyalist bloodshed, The Guardian, 4 February 2003.
  13. David Lister, Godfathers who threaten the peace, The Times, 25 July 2002.
  14. Alan Murphy, Expulsions are two-fingers to mainstream UDA, Sunday Life, 30 July 2006.
  15. Ian S. Wood, Crimes of Loyalty, A History of the UDA, Edinburgh University Press, 2006, p.60.
  16. Ian S. Wood, Crimes of Loyalty, A History of the UDA, Edinburgh University Press, 2006, p.186.
  17. Roddy McGregor, Gallagher 'not aware' of death threat to Shoukri, Irish News, 28 July 2003, archived at nuzhound.com.
  18. Laura Friel, Mechanisms of exclusion, An Phoblacht/Republican News, 11 September 2003.
  19. Brian Rowan, Dissidents furious over UDA leaders on Queen’s guest list, Belfast Telegraph, 16 May 2011.
  20. Ciaran De Baroid, Ballymurphy and the Irish War, Pluto Press, 2000, p.152.
  21. Protestant Paramilitary Leaders Arrested, Associated Press, 14 April 1982.
  22. Alan Murray, YOUNG BLOODS TILL UDA'S KILLING FIELDS, The Guardian, 11 August 1992.
  23. Angelique Chrisafis, The death of Doris Day, The Guardian, 12 October 2005.
  24. Brian Rowan, Why this death threat must be taken seriously, Belfast telegraph, 22 August 2012.
  25. Ian S. Wood, Crimes of Loyalty, A History of the UDA, Edinburgh University Press, 2006, p.118.
  26. Ian S. Wood, Crimes of Loyalty, A History of the UDA, Edinburgh University Press, 2006, p.205.
  27. Ian S. Wood, Crimes of Loyalty, A History of the UDA, Edinburgh University Press, 2006, p.136.
  28. Ian S. Wood, Crimes of Loyalty, A History of the UDA, Edinburgh University Press, 2006, p.186.
  29. Brian Rowan, UDA expels south east Antrim brigade chiefs, Belfast Telegraph, 29 March 2007.
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