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Easter Rising

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The Easter Rising took place in April 1916 in Dublin and is one of the pivotal events in Modern Irish History. The rising was organized by Irish Republican Brotherhood. The IRB was formed in the middle 19th century. There were two branches, one in Ireland and one in America, the Fenians. There aim was to set up an independent Irish Republic, by force if necessary. Many members also belonged to Sinn Fein. The Irish Republican Brotherhood had its own army called The Irish Volunteers. The Irish Volunteers were led by Patrick Pears. Sinn Fein was formed in 1905 by Arthur Griffiths. It was a rival to the moderate nationalist party. Sinn Fein wanted all Irish members of parliament to withdraw from Westminster, and set up a separate Irish parliament in Dublin. Although world war one deflected much of the tension over Home Rule, some leading Irish Republican Brotherhood figures felt that Ireland's freedom was being ignored. Many Irish Volunteers refused to fight for the British Army. A group including Patrick Pearse, Arthur Griffith and James Connoly planned an uprising against the British which involved seizing control of Dublin. James Connoly was a trade unionist and socialist who wanted to bring about Irish independence as part of his aim to establish a socialist state. He formed the Irish Citizen Army in 1913 and it joined forces with the Irish Volunteers in 1916 when Patrick Pearse declared himself the Commandant General of a joint Irish Republican Army. ...read more.


In December 1969 the IRA split, leading to the birth of the Provisional IRA who claimed they were the defenders of nationalist areas. They recruited new members and trained them during the winter of 1970. In the late summer of 1970, the good relations between the British Army and the nationalist community collapsed. The UK government had left the army under the political control of the Unionist government in N. Ireland. In July, four protestants were killed in a gun battle in Belfast and the government order 3 000 troops into the Falls Road to search for weapons and IRA suspects. This was against the advice of the army commander who had also asked for all marches to be banned. Every year Protestant groups, like the Orange Order, march to celebrate past victories like the Battle of the Boyne. This creates anger and resentment among the nationalist communities and has often led to violence on the streets. The request made by the army commander to ban these marches was turned down. Instead, catholic areas were swamped with troops and tear gas was used. One area was put under curfew for 35 hours and many people had no food. Homes were wrecked as troop searched for weapons. Therefore, the army which had been seen by catholics as saving them from a potential massacre in 1969, was now seen as having turned against them. ...read more.


This contributed to the vicious circle I have already mentioned and made it more difficult for peace to be established. Over the weeks following Bloody Sunday it seemed that law and order was breaking down. The Unionist party in N. Ireland split into smaller, more extreme groups. The Prime Minister lost the support of Members of Parliament. The British government stepped in and Prime Minister heath suspended the N. Irish Parliament and Direct Rule of N. Ireland from London began on 24 March 1972. However, this didn't improve the situation. By July 1972 there were 21 000 troops in N. Ireland and violence by paramilitary organizations continued. On this level, the Bloody Sunday inquiry, set alongside moves like the early release of paramilitary prisoners and proposals to allow IRA members "on the run" to return home, feeds the growing sense of alienation felt by unionists regarding the peace process. Some argue that a South African - style Truth Commission might be the only way to address those concerns, although that in turn could lead to new difficulties. The creation of the Saville Tribunal was meant to help heal the wounds left by Bloody Sunday. But such are the dynamics of N. Ireland that tending to one group of victims only serves to stir painful emotions amongst others. For my conclusion I would say that all of those events have an impact. But when you think about this, about Easter Rising, if they would not killed the rebel leaders the whole events would not started. ...read more.

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