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Season 4 of Netflix’s The Crown, has opened with a bang, literally and historically – as Monarchists and Anti-Monarchists alike tune in for the newest instalment of the historical drama series.
This season follows the royal family from 1977 to 1990, and introduces the world to a teenage Diana Spencer, as well as the early escalations of The Troubles in Northern Ireland.
The first episode begins with the assassination of Louis Francis Albert Victor Nicholas Mountbatten (The Earl Mountbatten of Burma, or, Lord Mountbatten), Queen Elizabeth’s historically complicated bachelor cousin, who was killed went the IRA planted one of their few bombs that actually detonated correctly on his fishing boat in 1979.
The assassination took place in 1979 while the statesman was crab potting and fishing for tuna just outside of his summer Castle in Mullaghmore, a small seaside village in County Sligo in the north-west of Ireland.
Many have described this area to be a cocky place for a royal to holiday considering the village is only 19 km) from the border of Northern Ireland was known to be used as a cross-border refuge by IRA members
Mountbatten’s death followed years of growing tensions between Britain and the Provisional Irish Republican Army (IRA), whose acts of violence, earlier contained in Belfast and mostly directed at English soldiers, began increasingly to target English citizens in England and in Ireland.
In the programme, Mountbatten is portrayed by Game of Thrones actor Charles Dance. He was 79 at the time of his death and to this day remains the only sitting royal to be killed by the IRA.
Another interesting record of note is the fact that Lord Mountbatten, also known as Admiral of the Fleet Louis Francis Albert Victor Nicholas Mountbatten – 1st Earl Mountbatten of Burma, is the first man outside of Far North Queensland to be murdered for pulling in crab pots that don’t belong to him.
While historians argue that is inappropriate to compare the hardcore territorial nature of FNQ crab-knucklers to the Irish struggle for indepedence from the British crown – the fact remains, they are still the only two examples where people have been killed on water over a crab pot.
Leading into the 2020 state election, Queensland Annastacia Palaszczuk made headlines by promising to boost resources for water police – after the rate of murders in crab potting hotspots spiked to 2000 during lockdown.
Furthermore, a recent survey by the Australian Bureau Of Statistics has found the almost 60% of North Queenslanders have lost a loved one to crab-pot-related assaults.