Every year on the 7th of July the Protestant orange men gather in their hundreds to march through the mainly catholic areas of Drumcree (and other places in Northern Ireland). The orange day parades are held each year for historical and political reasons. Historically, the orange day parades celebrate the victory of William of Orange over James II. When England replaced the Catholic James II, with the Protestant William of Orange. After the siege of Londonderry William of Orange landed at Carrickfergus castle in 1690 and won great victories in the battle of the Boyne and at Aughrim.
The Orangemen won the battles but the Catholics formed underground societies to try and restore James II to the throne. In the Protestants eyes this victory prevented them from being taken over by the Catholics or “papists. ” The Political significance of the Orange Day parades is that they deliberately march directly through the catholic areas, for example Drumcree, as a way of making sure that the Catholics never forget the battle of the Boyne and their “place” in Northern Ireland. Question two The two events I have chosen are: Bloody Sunday, and The Easter Rising. Bloody Sunday
On January 30, 1972, soldiers from the British Army’s 1st Parachute Regiment opened fire on unarmed and peaceful civilian demonstrators in the Bogside, Derry, Ireland, near the Rossville flats, killing 13 and wounding a number of others. One wounded man later died from illness attributed to that shooting. The march, which was called to protest internment, was “illegal” according to British government authorities. Internment without trial was introduced by the British government on August 9, 1971. At the British-government-appointed Widgery Tribunal the soldiers were found not guilty of shooting dead the 13 civilians in cold blood.
To this day the Britain has failed to offer any apology for the 13 people who were murdered. The most important way in which Bloody Sunday has affected the present day is the way it changed the catholic public’s opinion of on the IRA. Although events such as the civil rights movement and the government’s introduction of internment in 1971 gave the IRA a greater degree of support within the catholic population of Northern Ireland, it was Bloody Sunday that motivated a large number of Catholics to join the IRA “… provided the provisional IRA with a flood of fresh recruits for its long war. “(www. bbc. co. k/news Northern Ireland impacts of Bloody Sunday), and this consequently led to an increase in IRA violence.
For example in the 3 years prior to Bloody Sunday two hundred and ten people were killed in the troubles, whilst in the eleven months after Bloody Sunday, four hundred and forty five people lost their lives. As a consequence of Bloody Sunday, the Catholics and other people around the world became more tolerant and understanding of the IRA’s point, and fewer people were protesting against the IRA’s attacks. Another IRA related consequence of Bloody Sunday was the international response to the deaths of the thirteen innocent protesters.
This took the form of Ireland getting a lot of attention from other countries such as America, which has a large Irish minority that took part in fund raising for the IRA. Changes were also forced upon the government to a certain extent, as in London, some of the government ministers that may have approved the idea of “getting tough with the terrorists” who rebelled against their authority within the no-go areas such as Londonderry’s Bogside, were forced to reconsider their policies by the tragic amount of lives lost on Bloody Sunday and the international reaction from several countries.
The British government then decided that they must have full control of law and order over Northern Ireland, which then led to the suspension of the Northern Ireland government in the March of 1972, which in turn led to the decades of direct rule from the British government in London. So in the space of just over three months, the events of Bloody Sunday had managed to turn the whole of Britain upside down. There are still inquiries into the events of Bloody Sunday and the whole of Northern Ireland is still (despite the attempts with the Good Friday Agreement, which lifted the direct rule for a matter of months) under direct rule.
Another way in which Bloody Sunday has affected the present day is the current investigation into the course of events on Bloody Sunday, and more specifically who it was that fired the first shot that led to the deaths of the thirteen innocent demonstrators. Few people try to defend what the 1st parachute regiment did on Bloody Sunday, but many of the Protestant unionists try to question the fact that everyone concentrates all of their blame concerning “the troubles bloodiest year”, onto that one event.
So in conclusion bloody Sunday helped to gain a lot of support for the IRA, and this continues to effect us today as the IRA strikes time and again with bombings. Who knows, if it wasn’t for bloody Sunday, the IRA may not have become such a powerful group and these relentless attacks might not have taken place. The Easter Rising On 24 April 1916, Patrick Pearse stood outside the General Post Office in Dublin and read a proclamation announcing the establishment of an Irish republic under a provisional government.
Among the seven signatories of the proclamation was James Connolly, head of the para-military Irish Citizen Army, who had earlier led a successful occupation of the building. Elsewhere in Dublin, armed men had taken over key points such as the Four Courts, the College of Surgeons and Boland’s Mills. It was Easter Monday, and there were few people in the centre of Dublin to witness the rising. Many army officers had gone to the Fairyhouse races.
The men that planned and carried out this act feared that without a dramatic gesture of this kind, Northern Ireland would lose all of its pride, and be forgotten to the world as an independent country, but remembered only as an insignificant part of the British empire. The most historically significant effect of the Easter Rising is also the one that has effected the present day the most. The outbreak of war made them decide that Ireland could benefit from England’s troubles. The rebels turned to Germany for help, and Germany promised to send arms.
In addition to the small Irish Citizen Army, formed in 1913 to defend workers against police harassment, there were thousands of Irish Volunteers, an army formed in response to the Ulster Volunteer Force. Like the UVF, the Volunteers carried out a successful gun-running operation, landing arms at Howth, near Dublin, a few days before war was declared. The volunteers had several major setbacks, they were infiltrated by a member of the IRB, which had secretly fixed Easter Sunday as the date for the Rising.
The Volunteers’ leader, Eoin MacNeill, only discovered the plan on 20 April. Two days later, he learned that a German ship bringing arms had been intercepted and he realized that the Rising would be doomed, he cancelled all Volunteer maneuvers. Despite this setback, and knowing that their forces would be limited to a small number of Dublin Volunteers as well as the ICA, Pearse and Connolly decided that a rising must take place, if only as a ‘blood sacrifice’ to arouse the Irish people into support for their cause.
The rebels were captured and put to trial, and in different circumstances, they might have been treated with a bit more remorse, but Britain was at war, and in the fights, the limited forces of the army and police had suffered far greater casualties than the Pearse’s men. On 3 May, an announcement was made that Pearse and two other signatories of the republican proclamation had been tried by court martial and shot.
At the time of the Easter Rising, hundreds of Irishmen were fighting and being killed in WWI, to the Irish soldiers at war, the dead and the wounded and their families or friends at home, the Rising was a bitter betrayal. The Catholic public’s view of the Rising would have been drastically reduced if it were not for the way that the government dealt with the situation. Even though the Rising was treasonous, the Irish people did not agree with the executions that followed the arrests.
Out of the ninety condemned men, sixteen were shot Sheehy Skeffington, who was not a rebel, was arrested and then shot without trial, and the Irish publics anger at the situation grew. The real significance of this is that as peoples at the situation grew they began to understand what the rebels were fighting for and for the first time the masses of the country wanted an end to British rule. Nationalism swept the country especially as the details of the secret executions became known.
The War of Independence which followed in 1919, Civil War and the formation of the Irish Free State and the declaration of an Irish Republic are all important parts of Irish history and can all be traced back to the events of Easter week, 1916. Question three The first possible solution to the Irish conflict is to simply stick with the direct rule. There are no pro to this solution that I can see, but there are several cons, the majority of the population is Protestant, and to them this solution simply will not do as their goal is to be part of the united kingdom as Wales and Scotland both are.
There is a Protestant majority and the violence will start all over again. Another solution would be to create an independent Northern Ireland, but as stated in the cons for the previous solution, Northern Ireland has a majority of Protestants, and this would simply not be good enough for them, as they want the whole of Ireland to be part of the United Kingdom. Another solution to the conflict would be to introduce power sharing between the Protestants and the Catholics with them sharing the government and rotating posts within the government itself.
The pros of this solution would be; it is a possible choice because the Good Friday agreement proved that some form of sharing is broadly agreeable to both sides. Both of the communities have a say in the power over Ireland, so they both feel represented. It provides a good reason for the British troops to withdraw from Northern Ireland. It will bring investment from abroad, and is acceptable to the international communities. The cons to this solution are that democratic power sharing will be forced no matter who wins an election, this might result in more violence.
The final solution to the problem in Northern Ireland would be the Devolution of Northern Ireland, on a similar basis to the way Scotland is run, the elections to be counted by proportional representation. There are mainly cons to this solution as using the proportional representation method, the Protestants would win the elections every time, as they majority of the population of Northern Ireland is Protestant. The dehumanization of the Catholics would start all over again, because the Protestants would have all of the power.
My preferred solution is the power sharing solution. This is because both communities will have a say in how the county is run, this will prevent the Protestants discriminating against the Catholics or vice versa. The good Friday agreement has already proved that both sides are capable of sharing to some extent, and that is broadly agreeable to both sides. And there is a good reason for the British soldiers to withdraw from Northern Ireland. Both sides get most of what they want without the other side having to sacrifice anything.
So with this solution most of the problems that cause the violence and discrimination have been solved, and both of the communities are relatively happy. The problem that will be left if this solution is inforced is that violence and hatred may have become a lifestyle for those who have been born into it, and are living in it today, so the violence may continue as the Protestants and the Catholics continue their hatred for each other and continue to fight relentlessly.