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Northern Ireland

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Northern Ireland Northern Ireland has been having problems now for a long time. The tension has increased more and more throughout the years and during this essay; I'm going to focus on the main events in the last century. I will concentrate on the events of the Easter rising of 1916, the deployment of British troops in 1969, and Bloody Sunday 1972. It is important to look into the history of Ireland to understand what lead to these events occurring. In 1711 the English monarchy claimed rights over Ireland. At this time England was a Catholic country so Ireland became Catholic. However 400 years later in the reign of Henry the V111 the protestant religion became the main religion of England as he wished to be divorced. The majority of the Kings and Queens who succeeded Henry were Protestant. This meant that the rulers of Ireland were mainly Protestant. However Ireland itself remained a Catholic Country. In 1603 James the first came to the throne. It was obvious to see the religious tension as in the case of the gunpowder plot in November 1603. Guy Fawkes was a Catholic and him and his friends were trying to kill the king. In 1641 the British civil war had begun. The people in Ireland were rebelling. When the war was finally over, Oliver Cromwell was sent to Ireland and he massacred thousands of them, not just for rebelling, but for been Catholic. 1689, the date of the Battle of the Boyne. William of Orange had a famous Protestant victory over the Catholics. He had gone to Ireland simply to kill Catholics, for the sake of the safety of the Monarchy. This is still remember today by Catholics. The Potato famine in 1840 added to the tensions between the two religions. Up to about 3,000,000 Irishmen starved and had no help from their Protestant neighbours even though help could have been easily given. ...read more.


The Paras entered the town expecting gunfire, snipers could be anywhere, tall flats each one might contain a sniper who was to know and who wasn't. Ten minutes before the Paras were due to go in to action a gunshot was heard. This was the beginning of the end of the disastrous day. It is still unknown where that shot came from. Was it from a Para or a sniper? That is a debate still going on today. After a gunshot had been heard the soldiers had been told to mover forward, sheet targets. This is what they did. It wasn't long after this that it was noticed that Jackie Doddie had been shot. The Bishop of Derry, Dr Edward Daly, witnessed it. He strongly said that he was shot by somebody in the flats near the church. There is also much evidence for this fact for example a gunshot was heard at that time, and there is a picture of somebody with a possible gun type weapon. From then on the whole of the town was chaotic. It had been a strict order at the beginning of the day that the paras were not to go into Rosville Street, as it was full of innocent people, which meant accidents could easily happen. However the paras were there even though they were strictly told not to be. Guns, missiles and stones were all over the place. No one knew what was going on and noone was safe. At the end of the day 13 people had been killed and 14 people had been injured. The Paras however had been heard saying "Job well done" and such as phrasings. They had done the job, which was to stop the rioting, and they were pleased. Colonel Wilford still says to this day that none of the people killed that day were innocent. All of the people were breaking the law and all of them that were out there knew that. ...read more.


However there was still the issue of Decommissioning to resolve, this subject seemed to have no end. No matter what was happening the IRA refused to decommission. It was not until after the events of September 11th that the IRA had to think of what to do next. After America had announced its war on terrorism, the main supply of money to the IRA was stopped. (The main supply came from New York). This lead to a lack of money with the IRA, so they decided innocently to begin to decommission. There are still unresolved problems in Ireland despite the agreement. Ian Paisley refuses to communicate with Sinn Fein, simply because they have different views to Paisley. Unionists are still having trouble trusting the Northern Irish Police, as 90% of them are Protestants. As much as the agreement talked of cease-fire, bombings were and are still occurring the main one probably happened in 1999 in Omagh where many innocent people were killed. Overall after this agreement in 1998 the short-term consequences were that people felt safer and they felt motivated to move on from this point. Unlike the other attempts the Good Friday Agreement did not have repercussions and the people, even the extremists seemed happy this had happened. In the long term this agreement has been kept as like a contract. And has been tried to be stuck to at all costs. So far this agreement is still working and as I said before the IRA have begun to decommission. Overall this attempt has been and is hugely successful. It has taken the idea of Power sharing, and taken the points of the Downing Street Declaration and added a newly improved attempt on the top. Therefore it is the best of both the attempts before plus more. After all the events starting from William of Orange and finishing now it shows that maybe that finally the Catholics are beginning to trust the Protestants. This would be for the first time in history. ...read more.

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