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Study the recent newspaper article provided. Choose one of these articles and explain in your own words what it is about.

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History GCSE Modern World Study: Assessment Objective 2 To explain a current situation in the light of past events a) Study the recent newspaper article provided. Choose one of these articles and explain in your own words what it is about. The newspaper article entitled 'In a sectarian city, children go back to school and run a gauntlet of hate' from 'The Independent' dated Tuesday 4th September, 2001 shows an example of the on-going conflict between the Catholic and Protestant community. The article is about how pupils from Holy Cross Catholic Girls Primary School in Ardoyne, Belfast have to go to school in a predominantly Protestant area. As a consequence, the local Protestant loyalists have started a heated campaign to prevent the Catholic school children from using Ardoyne Road as a route to their school. The Red Hand Defenders, Protestant loyalists have requested that parents take their children on an alternative route to school. This was met with a negative response as the, 'parents felt this would be like handing victory to the loyalists by giving in to their intimidation.' As a result the Protestant loyalists launched a far more aggressive campaign in which the children were spat at and called unkind names such as 'Fenian scum'. This term was once viewed as a favourable name for Catholics, but today in is seen as a racist term. The children had to witness violent behaviour and hear obscene threats aimed at both themselves and their parents. The dispute got so fierce that the young girls had to be escorted through Ardoyne Road by police and troops, 'but at some points the parents and the protestors came within a few feet of each other.' This cause great friction and elevated the fearful situation and the Catholic children were left scared and traumatized by the extreme circumstances. The police and troops took the situation very seriously as the Red Hand Defenders are known to be aggressive and the, 'organisation has carried out scores of pipe-bomb and shooting attacks.' ...read more.


By the early twentieth century, many people wanted full independence. Some Protestants took the nationalist side and demanded Home Rule, which aimed to get its supporters elected as MPs in the British Parliament. Unionists who wanted to keep the union with Britain believed that Home Rule meant 'Rome Rule'. This meant that the Catholic Church ruled it. Home Rulers wanted a separate Irish parliament but their campaign was defeated by a number of groups, including Irish unionists, who wanted to remain under British rule. However despite Unionists protests, Britain promised Home Rule just before World War I, and over one hundred and fifty thousand Irish went off to serve with the British army. However nationalists saw this as an opportunity to strike for full independence. At Easter 1916, Patrick Pearce led armed volunteers to seize public buildings in Dublin and declared an Irish Republic. However they were hopelessly outmatched and a few weeks later the leaders were executed. This ignited huge amounts of sympathy for the revolutionaries and in the 1918 elections, Sinn Fein, the nationalist party, won the majority of the seats allocated to Ireland at Westminster. At the same time the IRA began war against the police and British army, which continued until 1921. After the death of the Mayor of Cork, Terrence MacSwiney the whole country, apart from the Unionists now supported an independent republic. The British knew that they could never win back Irish support and so London sued for peace. They did this to split the country in two. A treaty was agreed in December 1921 by which six of Ulster's counties stayed linked to the United Kingdom, with their own parliament in Belfast, while the other twenty-six counties became the Irish Free State. In 1920, the Government of Ireland Act split Ireland in two, and in 1937 the state changed its name to Eire when its written constitution was adopted and it left the British Commonwealth in 1949 and southern Ireland became independent. ...read more.


Edward Heath, the Prime Minister appointed the Lord Chief Justice of England, Lord Widgery, to conduct an inquiry. In April 1972, he concluded that the soldiers had been fired on first yet there was no evidence that the dead or wounded had been shot while handling weapons. However not everyone shared his controversial verdict, the Londonderry Coroner, Major Hubert O'Neill said that what had occurred was, "sheer unadulterated murder". On the twentieth anniversary of the killings an independent inquiry was launched. The Prime Minister, John Major's conclusion was that those killed could be regarded as innocent. This result did not satisfy the relatives of the dead and injured. Since Bloody Sunday the mayhem committed by terrorist groups from the Bog Side have kept the death toll rising. The situation in Northern Ireland is very complex and identifying the exact roots to the problem is very difficult. The events that have happened throughout history have all contributed to the current situation. For example plantation, which created the situation where the two groups were aiming for different things, one wanted to be united with Britain and the other wanted to be their own country. In my opinion the roots of the present situation in Northern Ireland can be found mainly in the events of the last thirty years. Events such as the Battle of the Bogside and Bloody Sunday have remained in the minds of Protestants and Catholics throughout Ireland. This is a reason why neither side will ever step down from what they believe is theirs. The violent events of the more recent past have created the situation where neither side will back down or compromise because there has been too much suffering in the fight so far. Too much has happened over the years and the Protestant and Catholic communities still look back on these events with an extreme grudge. This grudge can be seen in the recent events in Belfast where innocent children are suffering the consequences of the long campaign of hatred. ?? ?? ?? ?? Johanna Clarke 28th October, 2001 ...read more.

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