• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Why were British troops sent to Northern Ireland in 1969?

Extracts from this document...


Why were British troops sent to Northern Ireland in 1969? On the 14th August 1969, after two days of lawlessness and violence in Derry which became known as the Battle of the Bogside, the Northern Irish government requested the British army to restore peace amongst its rioters. The troops were sent into Northern Ireland as a short term emergency solution to the widespread violence � there were genuine concerns over the possibility of a civil war breaking out. There was a historic feud between Protestants and Catholics. And the roots of disaffection between the communities ran deep. Protestant England had seen Catholic Ireland as a hostile base for Spanish invasion in the sixteenth century. The subsequent Plantation Policy deliberately took land from local Catholics and handed it to new Protestant settlers. These settlements, predominantly in Ulster and Munster, had a profound implication for the future political development of the country, with the descendants of protestant settlers wishing to continue links with the mainland and the descendants of native Irish settlers wishing for independence. ...read more.


Subsequent attempts by nationalists to achieve independence were met by the formation of the Orange Order in the late 18th century. Its' principal aim was to stifle the efforts of Irish nationalists and to uphold the Protestant Ascendancy. However, it's decline through the 19th century was reversed by the growing movement of Home Rule. Protestants had long recognised they would be a minority in a united, independent Ireland. They also understood that Ulster had long been the most prosperous of the Irish provinces. Farming and industry flourished there and Belfast was a thriving port. Their opposition to Home Rule grew, with the slogan 'Ulster will fight and Ulster will be right' becoming popular amongst Unionists, who secured opt outs for six of the nine Ulster counties from Home Rule proposals. Northern Ireland had been created following partition in 1921 ; with a population 60% Protestant and 40% Catholic. The state was given its own parliament that could make its own legislation. ...read more.


O'Neill was ousted and his less reform minded successor, Chichester-Clark was seen as the best possible compromise candidate by the Government in Westminster. Chichester-Clark was concerned about denying his Protestant base their Apprentice Boys march in Derry in 1969 and believed to do so would weaken his position. Although alarmed, London agreed to Chichester-Clark's request. The Orangemen's insistence on marching through Catholic areas was designed to assert their supremacy over the territory. The mobilisation of the paramilitary B-Specials (effectively a sectarian law enforcement tool which had long been a focus of the civil rights reformers concerns) to suppress any Catholic rioters, further infuriated the nationalists. Ferocious fighting ensued and hence the troops were sent to the province. The introduction of British troops to the province was especially ironic because they were there sent to protect Catholics against Unionist aggression. In due course, they were to become symbolic of British rule in the province, becoming a regular target of Republican hostility. 0 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Northern Ireland 1965-85 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Northern Ireland 1965-85 essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Why Were The British Troops Sent Into Northern Ireland In 1969?

    3 star(s)

    country that they wanted to live in, because of where the boundaries of the partition were. The boundary was stated in the Irish Anglo Treaty, but it did not please everyone. Both the Catholics and the Protestants would not back down, as they both wanted their aims to be fully achieved.

  2. The History of Conflict in Ireland.

    In recognizing that the war has reached a stage of stalemate,they cannot defeat the British; but, equally, the British cannot defeat them. So, the only to move forward is through a political strategy. And once they abandon the armalite, they realize that it may take another generation before they could begin the armed struggle again.

  1. How Effectively did Irish Catholic and Nationalist Leaders advance their Cause in the years ...

    giving the middle-classes more power at the expense of the landlords, and with a great buyout of the landlords by Government and sell-off to tenants at very favourable rates. Redmond should have been as successful leader, as his tactics to get home-rule were both legal pragmatic.

  2. Why were british troops sent into northern ireland in 1969?

    After an incident in which three men were shot and one dead, the Government made the UVF illegal which annoyed the Protestants because the Catholics were allowed their groups. Not much changed when the UVF got banned because on the 12th July 1966, Orange marches reminded the Catholics, yet again, that the Protestants ruled Northern Ireland.

  1. Why were British troops sent into Northern Ireland in 1969?

    For the very first time there were differences between the two separate communities; they were forced apart and suspicion was rife between them. The two communities did not mix and the Catholics became second rate citizens to the Protestant 'Invaders'.

  2. Why were British troops sent into Northern Ireland in 1969?

    This links to the Famine with the hatred of the British. In Ireland potato was the major crop. In 1845 the crop failed, and as most Catholics were tenant farmers they were faced with a choice. Catholic farmers could either eat their crop and lose income and be evicted, or sell pay rent and starve.

  1. Why were British troops sent into Northern Ireland in 1969

    Firstly, the fundamental causes were, the Protestant Unionists dominated northern Ireland, this showed that Ireland was already split by this point. The main factor which caused this separation was religion. There are lots of places in the world where two different religions lie side by side without any political hostility.

  2. Catholic and Protestant, Nationalist and Unionist, Republican and

    and yet still to this point violence had been sparse and rarely bloody. However, as nationalism sprouted up all across Europe in the 1880s with Ireland being no exception, Britain saw the rise of Gaelic pride as something that deserved attention.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work