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Northern Ireland has had a volatile and tortured history. In 1969 began the conflict, which today is known as

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Introduction

Ireland Coursework Katy Foreman Northern Ireland has had a volatile and tortured history. In 1969 began the conflict, which today is known as "The Troubles", but Northern Ireland's troubled history roots back to a much earlier period of time. The seeds of partition were really sown in the mid 19th century when the notion of two separate nations took root in Ireland. The Young Ireland movement of the 1840's promoted a new racial ideology emphasising the Gaelic origins of Catholics. Protestants in Ulster bought into the idea of being Anglo-Saxon rather than Gaelic and laid claim to the virtues of thrift, hard work and respect for the law. Towards the end of the 19th century the Gladstone government responded to demands in southern Ireland for Home Rule. Unionists believed a Home Rule parliament in Dublin run by Catholic farmers would be bad for Protestant businesses and by 1886 began to lobby for the predominantly Protestant northern counties. They believed Catholicism was an oppressive, backward religion and feared that Home Rule would result in Rome Rule. The House of Lords began to introduce Home Rule Bills, one in 1886 and the other in 1893. Asquith's Liberal government introduced the third Home Rule Bill in 1912. Dublin Unionist MP Edward Carson threatened armed resistance if Ulster was governed from Dublin. ...read more.

Middle

Right from the start Direct Rule could only ever be a partial success, as there was not even a possibility that the Nationalists would cooperate with the new scheme. So therefore all that could be hoped for was the continued support of the Unionists and the hope that by sending in troops to supervise the country, that they may achieve some sort of peace. Unfortunately even with the presence of British troops, the Nationalists still rebelled with an extremely high level of violence. The IRA's change of tactics during the 1970s, to start bombing the British mainland, showed that a new strategy would have to be introduced. Direct Rule, beginning with only the simple hopes of obtaining and maintaining some sort of peace in Ireland, ended as a complete failure. Violence and resentment were turned more and more towards the British and this resulted in many British civilian deaths. In March 1973 plans for an Assembly in which Unionists and Catholics would share power were put into place. In June elections for the Assembly were held. When the Sunningdale Agreement was announced on 9th December anti-power-sharing Unionists denounced it as a step towards a united Ireland and vowed to destroy it. At first it looked as though power - sharing offered the prospect of some solution to the troubles in Ireland. ...read more.

Conclusion

It broke down due to other factors, (the Orange march). As a result violence flared up again. If it wasn't for the march bringing all of the resentment back with a vengeance then I certainly think that the Good Friday agreement would have been a total success. More violence followed. 29 people were killed and 220 were injured when a car bomb exploded in a busy shopping area of Omagh. An IRA splinter group claimed responsibility and then declared a cease-fire. On the 13th September 1998, the new Northern Ireland Assembly met for the first time in Stormont. This looked as though it could be the year of peace but numerous obstacles such as decommissioning, prisoner releases, continued violence and distrust still stood in the way. On the 15th July 1999 the Northern Ireland power - sharing executive should have been set up; instead the Ulster Unionists boycotted the session. On the 1st December 2000 full power was transferred from Westminster to the Northern Ireland Assembly. The next day the Republic of Ireland abandoned its claim to the territory of Northern Ireland. This was a historic moment. The problems in Ireland still continue today, but the level of violence has decreased by far. The republic of Ireland abandoning its claim to Northern Ireland territory surely shows that we are now slowly working towards a successful peace process. ...read more.

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