Monday, November 15, 2010

Fallen Comrade of the Irish Republican Socialist Movement

Fallen Comrade of the Irish Republican Socialist Movement*

Alex Patterson
Volunteer - Irish National Liberation Army
Killed in Action on 12 November 1990

Alex Patterson, age 31 and a father of four from Strabane, Co. Tyrone, was shot dead on 12 November 1990 by a unit of the British Army's Special Air Service, which had staked out the house of an Ulster Defence Regiment soldier near Victoria Bridge, outside Strabane.

News reports at the time indicated that security forces knew in advance of an imminent INLA attack on the soldier's house.

Patterson's death was the subject of an inquest in 1997, highlighting another example of Britain's shoot to kill policy when dealing with republican activists.

At the inquest, the British Army admitted that he was given no chance to surrender and that no medical assistance was summoned after the shooting. Evidence submitted to the inquest suggested he may have been captured and summarily executed by the SAS.

When the jury returned a verdict that didn't support the British Army's version of events, the coroner dismissed the jury and sealed their verdict, which was only revealed after a successful lawsuit.

A memorial to Patterson and another comrade was unveiled in Strabane on 10 August 2003.

He died as he lived: a Republican Socialist. Remember him with honour and pride.