Political Murals, Belfast 2010

Image 11 of 15
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Despite an undistinguished career in the IRA prior to his arrest, Bobby Sands became a hugely important symbol once he wound up in the Maze Prison.  He led the 1981 Hunger Strikes that left him and nine other Republican prisoners dead.  But not before he got elected to Parliament (people believed that if they elected him, Margaret Thatcher would not let a &quot;colleague&quot; die in prison...they guessed wrong about that).  Sands and the others played a crucial role in re-energizing the IRA both militarily and politically and he remains a beloved figure for it almost thirty years on.