Tony Campbell remembers his sister, Martha.
Martha Campbell was a 13-year-old schoolgirl murdered by the Killer Kings Regiment of the British Army in May 1972. Her brother, Tony, gave this speech at the final march to remember the Ballymurphy Massacre less than a year before.
"Martha Campbell was a 13-year-old schoolgirl going to visit a friend in Springhill Crescent on the 14th May 1972 when she was shot with a high-velocity bullet that went straight through her body. The soldier that fired the shot must have known it was a young girl as Martha was light-framed and wearing a dress at the time.
Martha died almost instantly and no responsibility has ever been claimed.
The RUC at the time did not conduct any investigation to try and find out who Martha’s killer was - not all eyewitnesses were spoken to - no forensic report - no Ballistics report - no engineering report.
They did not ever speak to the Military Police to check if the army had any involvement. The inquest back in 1972 was quick and Martha's murder brushed under the carpet thinking we would forget with time and move on.
NO we have not forgotten and not moving on until we get the truth on what happened to Martha and who was responsible for covering it up.
It has only been in the last few years that we received new evidence uncovered by the good work of Ciarán MacAirrt of Paper Trail, sifting through FOI docs where he found the 1 Kings logs for that day which not only show they were in Moyard flats but also they were firing into the area where Martha was at the time Martha was shot. They also state they were the only ones firing at the time.
"Eyewitnesses have confirmed that the shots were coming from Moyard flats despite British army claims that there was no military personnel in the flats at the time of Martha’s death. Even the HET could not get this information or if they did decided not to disclose it."
"So despite waiting 50 years to get this far and submit our application to the Attorney General for a new inquest, we are now faced with a Legacy Bill that will prevent us from getting our day in court if an inquest is granted."
"We cannot allow the British Government to take the hard-fought rug from under all of us who have fought and waited so long for the truth. They are deepening our wounds further, all to save money and let their own off the hook."
"I know we cannot bring our loved ones back, but that does not mean that we just move on. In Martha's case, she only got 13 years of life and was denied a future. The person who murdered Martha and those who knew about it, covered it up leaving us in darkness for 50 years. They continued on with their careers and lives uncaring about what they had done."
"What I would like, even if those responsible are dead, is for them to be named and shamed and any Honours they received during their dirty careers to be taken back as they are not worthy."
Tony Campbell August 2023
Tony and the family have a moving campaign website: Remember Martha Campbell
Read the Paper Trail report: The Murder of Martha Campbell, Schoolgirl
Trope: Essays and Articles
by Ciarán MacAirt.
These essays and articles represent a personal journey, and find him trudging from the killing fields of World War 1 to the back streets of Belfast where death squads prowled.
All of the profits from the sale of this book are donated directly to the charity, Paper Trail, to help fund its work with victims and survivors of the conflict in Ireland and Britain.