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Ireland is a place of conflict; the conflict is between the Catholic minority and the Protestant majority.

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Introduction

History Coursework - Ireland - Part 1 Ireland is a place of conflict; the conflict is between the Catholic minority and the Protestant majority. There are several viewpoints about what goes on, what it means and why it is done. Violent actions are in some areas seen as a part of everyday life. Non-Violent actions are also taken to help the situations that often occur. This has been done much more so in the past few years and violence has dramatically decreased but has not been totally eradicated. Every year Protestants march through the city of Londonderry and Catholic Bogside areas to commemorate a siege of Londonderry in 1689. It has become a tradition but still upsets and angers many Catholics today. In 1969 the march was blown out of proportion considerably. Catholic rioters were at the scene of the march; they fought the RUC (Royal Ulster Constabulary) and the 'B specials' for 3 days. The events were televised and they did very little for the RUC's image. The violent actions included not only fist fighting but also weapons such as tear gas, petrol bombs and rubber bullets. Serious sectarian violence broke out especially in the afore mentioned areas and Belfast. Rows of houses were burned, 3,500 people mainly Catholics were driven from their homes, 7 were killed and 100 wounded, the uproar was terrible. ...read more.

Middle

As a result a vote in 1918 elected Sinn Fein and the Home Rule was finished. Another long-term and significant event causing British troops to be called was the War of Independence, which led to a partition. The War of Independence involved private armies who carried out shootings and bombings. To fight back the British Government used 'Black and Tans' and 'Axillaries' against the armies. Both parties were ruthless against them but shooting, bombings and general violent actions were still being carried out, in desperation the British Government decided on a partition. Six counties with the least Catholics became Northern Ireland, which stayed a part of Britain, and the rest of Ireland became a free state under the Government of Ireland act. The result of the act was that the Catholic Minority became afraid as Protestants dominated them. Sectarian Discrimination became a huge factor in Northern Ireland between 1922 and the 1960's, Catholics were treated unfairly and the breakdown of the home rule didn't help the situation. They were treated unfairly for jobs, housing, politics, police and the justice system. A persons religion was taken into account when applying for a job, Catholics found it difficult to get jobs especially if it involved the Government positions, as they were thought not to be loyal to the state, they were more likely to be unemployed. ...read more.

Conclusion

It was thought that the policies of his Government were too liberal and well meaning and too slow to change things. His economic policies were thought to benefit Protestants and not the poor Catholic areas. Many people disagreed with what he was saying and didn't feel he was being fair to their religion be it Catholic or Protestant. There was a lot of violence in Northern Ireland from January 1969 this would be a factor because the Irish Government would find it too large and widespread to cope with. In January 1969 the area of Bumtoillet Bridge was attacked, off duty police intervened along with B Specials, the escort did very little. On the 12th August 1969 fierce fighting broke out after the apprentice boys parade. The Irish PM, Jack Lynch threatened to intervene Protestants felt threatened by this. The Irish Government decided to call in British troops because of all the trouble. At first Britain refused saying 'Once we do, they may be there for a long time' but in the end they decided to intervene. I think that the most important reason for this was the violence and the breakdown in law and order. The troops were needed because the Irish forces weren't big or strong enough to cope with what was going on. The troops were needed to help out but not take over, which is what many of the Irish thought was happening. AMY WOOD ...read more.

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