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Events Which Shape Irish People's Views Today

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Choose Two Events in the Last 100 Years Which are Particularly Important In Shaping the Views of Today's Irish People? The views of today's Irish people, on both sides, have been influenced by past events in Ireland's history and the behaviour of Irish people at those times. One of these events is the Home Rule Agreement controversy between 1912 and 1914. In 1912, after 30 long years of democratic protests Ireland was finally about to be granted home rule; after the Irish Nationalist Party had made an agreement with the British Liberal Government. This deal consisted of the Nationalist Party voting in favour of several bills and therefore keeping the British Liberal Party in office in return for their much longed for Home Rule Agreement. However this sparked controversy and a substantial minority (The Protestant Hardliners) began setting up a Private Army prepared to die in order to stop the home rule agreement; these actions resulted in the Nationalists (Hardliners) as well setting up their own private army. ...read more.


On the other hand, these past events in London have lead to today's Protestant Hardliners believing that they can not trust a British Government. As Ian Paisley commented in a speech how the English "are not our friends" and therefore the Irish people should be "afraid of a dirty, underhanded deal done behind our backs." Just as happened in 1914 when despite years of loyalty to the English, Irish Protestants suddenly found that the Liberal Government had forgot them and done a deal with the Catholic Nationalist's Party as it helped the Liberals stay in power. But the Irish Protestants would be under Catholic rule. Furthermore, in the wake of the home rule agreement, in 1912, the Protestant Hardliners formed a private army; the "Ulster Volunteers". These men would "never, never, never" surrender and if needed were "prepared to lay down their lives". So today's Protestant Hardliners look back on these events proudly at how throughout all ages "Ulster men aren't going to surrender" and consequently are prepared today to use violence and break the law to be united with Britain (despite not trusting a British Government to rule them) ...read more.


Conversely today's Nationalists hold beliefs that they need an Irish Government which sits in Ireland as Irish people understand what other Irish people want. Where as in 1916 the British Government didn't understand the ordinary Irish people so therefore executed villains (who had no support) as they felt this would end the problem definitely. But it ultimately transformed the views of the ordinary Irish "who ten days ago had been bitterly opposed to the ...rebellion" now began to see these men as martyrs and "were becoming infuriated against the British government." As they look back at 1916 all many Nationalists see are see appalling decisions made by a bad British Government yet many are not surprised as the British are foreigners in Ireland so how can you expect a people that don't understand you to make decisions which benefit you are truly what you want. These have strongly influenced today's view that a British Government is bad for Ireland. ?? ?? ?? ?? Caitlin Bones ...read more.

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