Citation
"Walls of Belfast"

Material Information

Title:
"Walls of Belfast" a study of the conflict in Northern Ireland
Creator:
Irwin, John E
Place of Publication:
Denver, CO
Publisher:
University of Colorado Denver
Publication Date:
Language:
English
Physical Description:
xiii, 87 leaves : ; 28 cm

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Since 1922 ( fast )
Ethnology -- Ireland ( lcsh )
Social conflict -- Ireland ( lcsh )
Ethnology ( fast )
Politics and government ( fast )
Social conflict ( fast )
History -- Ireland -- 1922- ( lcsh )
Politics and government -- Northern Ireland -- 1969-1994 ( lcsh )
Ireland ( fast )
Northern Ireland ( fast )
Genre:
History. ( fast )
bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )
History ( fast )

Notes

Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 85-87).
Thesis:
Submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree, Master of Arts, Anthropology
General Note:
Department of Anthropology
Statement of Responsibility:
by John E. Irwin.

Record Information

Source Institution:
|University of Colorado Denver
Holding Location:
|Auraria Library
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
36397452 ( OCLC )
ocm36397452
Classification:
LD1190.L43 1996m .I79 ( lcc )

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Full Text
"WALLS OF BELFAST"
A STUDY OF THE CONFLICT IN NORTHERN IRELAND
by
John E. Irwin
B.A. Colorado Christian University, 1991
M.A. University of Colorado at Denver, 1996
A thesis submitted to the
University of Colorado at Denver
in partial fulfillment
of the requirements for the degree of
Master of Arts
Anthropology
1996


This thesis for the Master of Art in Anthropology
degree by
John E. Irwin
has been approved
by
Robert C arisen
ig'Janes
s.
Date


Irwin, John E. (M.A. Anthropology)
"Walls of Belfast" A study in the conflict in Northern Ireland
Thesis directed by Dr. Kitty Corbett
ABSTRACT
This thesis is an ethnography of the conflict that exists in Belfast, Northern
Ireland. The study describes the experiences and perceptions of repression, prejudice,
and discrimination as recounted by residents of the Ballymurphy section of Belfast.
This thesis examines theoretical perspectives on conflict as defined by social scientists
and concerned citizens in Ireland and Great Britain in an effort to better grasp their
philosophical differences. Data are drawn from literature on the conflict, political
organizations, religious activists and accounts of thirty people affected from both
sides of the conflict in Belfast. Political perspectives on both sides of this conflict
provide insight into the dilemmas and possible solutions to this 27 year conflict.
This abstract accurately represents the content of the candidate's thesis. I recommend
its publication.
Signed_
Kitty Corbett


DEDICATION
I dedicate this thesis to those residents of Ballymuiphy and the members of Sinn Fein
without whom this thesis would not have been completed. I would further like to
dedicate this thesis to all Catholics residing in Northern Ireland and the struggle they
must endure on a daily basis and to those Republicans remaining steadfast in their
convictions to see Ireland reunited. I cannot complete this dedication without a
special thanks to my wife and son, who had to endure three years of constant studying
and an uncompromising schedule that often left them out. I would like to end this
dedication with a quote, "Irishmen and Irishwomen: In the name of God and of the
dead generations horn which she receives her old tradition of nationhood, Ireland,
through us, summons her children to the flag and strikes her freedom" (1916
Proclamation).


ACKNOWLEDGMENT
I would like to express my thanks to the staff of the Graduate School of
Anthropology at the University of Colorado at Denver for their support, guidance,
and superior teaching. I would particularly like to thank Dr. Kitty Corbett for her
untiring patience during this process and for the undivided attention she was willing
provide at any moment. I would further like to thank Dr. Robert Carlsen, who was
my first professor in Anthropology and was pivotal in my decision to pursue
Anthropology. Finally, 1 would like to personally thank Dr. Linda Curran and Dr.
Craig Janes: both professors challenged me to become a better student and were a
source of great encouragement during this program.


CONTENTS
PREFACE......................................vii
CHAPTER
1. INTRODUCTION.......................1
2. "FREE IRELAND": HISTORICAL
PERSPECTIVES.......................6
MAP OF NORTHERN IRELAND............16
3. THEORIES OF CONFLICT..............17
4. PERSPECTIVES OF PARTICIPANTS
IN THE CONFLICT
"SHANKILL-NO-SURRENDER":
PERSPECTIVES OF LOYALISTS
(PROTESTANTS).....................25
"VICTORY TO THE PROVISIONAL
IRA: PERSPECTIVES OF
REPUBLICANS (CATHOLICS)...........34
5 BALLYMURPHY: A COMMUNITY
OF RESISTANCE.....................44
MAP OF INNER BELFAST..............47
6. CONCLUSION..................76
GLOSSARY....................................83
BIBLIOGRAPHY................................85
vi


PREFACE
This thesis is about the conflict in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The data
gathered for this document is representative of conversations, interviews, and
literature reviews conducted and researched over a period of three years. However,
while gathering this information my personal view and opinion on the conflict began
to change, to explain that change, I feel it appropriate to share a personal journey that
began in 1969.
In 1969, while an active part of the anti-Viet-Nam War movement, I became
interested in the "troubles" as they were depicted in Northern Ireland. At that time,
while the United States was experiencing its own civil rights movement, complete
with demonstrations, riots, and unfortunate fatalities, Belfast and the rest of Northern
Ireland also was in the midst of experiencing a civil rights movement of its own.
Influenced by the words and actions of Martin Luther King Jr., the Catholics in
Northern Ireland chose to respond to the discrimination, prejudice, poor housing, and
unemployment in a non-violent manner. Unfortunately, because of misunderstanding
or misinterpretation the police and military in Northern Ireland, not properly trained,
mishandled and overreacted to the demonstrations, and confrontations resulted in
large scale rioting and loss of life.
Being of Irish descent and raised Catholic, I experienced a bond between
myself and the Irish protesters. For me, what occurred in Belfast in 1969 suddenly
became of greater importance than the demonstrations I actively participated in. For
the next ten years I spent many nights searching for information about what had
vu


occurred in Northern Ireland. At the same time, I became captivated with the Irish
Republican Army (IRA), who had now been classified by the international community
as a "terrorist" organization. I distinctly recollect increasing my support of the IRA,
admiring the stance they had taken on behalf of a people wanting an equal voice,
equal opportunity, a job with some dignity, and a house they could own. I envisioned
the British and the Protestants as perpetrators of hate and discrimination, a collective
entity without conscience.
In the latter part of 1979, the tactics of the IRA were changing, and with that
my feelings towards the IRA and their campaigns began to change as well. In
retrospect what occurred coincided with a return to a church setting, a Protestant
church at that. In the spring of 1990, after having written three successful grants
through the Presbyterian church I brought a team of ten people to Belfast, Northern
Ireland. The purpose of this trip was to establish small group structures at the local
church level to determine whether or not small groups structures could or would be a
successful tool in reconciliation efforts an area of perceived conflict.
I spent thirty days in Ireland, gathering information from a variety of sources,
while at the same time my photojoumalist associate exhausted himself in an effort to
capture the essence of the pain and anguish of Belfast. Upon returning to the United
States I solicited the assistance of a trusted and long time friend to make sense of the
photos, to understand what had been captured on film while in Northern Ireland.
During the summer (1990) I wrote and produced a short documentary about the trip,
attempting to capture the emotions and messages of those in the video. As a result of
VUl


this video I had numerous speaking engagements at a variety of organizations in
Denver. It wasn't until three years later that I discovered a disturbing truth; the
information that I had gathered, spoke to hundreds of people about, told only one
side of the story. The information I had obtained came from British government, the
Presbyterian church and numerous Protestant organizations. However, photographic
efforts had deliberately focused on Catholic men, women and children, to provide an
emotional outlet and identity for the video documentary. As a result of this discovery
I use disclaimers prior to showing the tape to any organizations. Although
statistically accurate the video represented the view only from a Protestant
perspective.
I have discovered as a result of that trip the need to discover the "another
truth" from the actual participants in the conflict. Since that discovery, I have made a
concerted and deliberate effort to gather information that would enable me to better
assess the current situation in Northern Ireland. In subsequent trips I made sure that I
had interviewed representatives from both sides of the conflict, in equal numbers.
The interviews often required enduring fourteen hour days and constant interviews.
In a January trip, while concluding the fact gathering, I was able to interview a
member of the Sinn Fein organization (legal and political wing of the IRA); this was
an interview that I had desperately wanted to do. I was granted an audience with one
of the communications officers, a man, who over the course of the next two years I
have grown to know quite well The interview lasted more than three hours,
discussing numerous subjects and ended with his asking "will you have a drink with us
IX


later at a pub?" I distinctly remember that night. I waited for about forty-five
minutes before the communications officer entered the pub, accompanied by two
other men. The evening was spent listening to "traditional" Irish music and
conversing. The trip, regardless of the grueling schedule I kept, had been a success.
In July (1995), I had the honor and privilege to stay with a Catholic family in
the Ballymurphy section of Belfast. This section of Belfast is reputed to be an IRA
and Sinn Fein stronghold. The living arrangements had been organized by the
communications officer at Sinn Fein. He maintained I should get the other side of the
story, and experience Belfast more profoundly.
On July 12th, a Protestant celebration occurs in Belfast that can only be
compared to the fourth of July celebration in this country. On the eve of this
celebration, Protestants erect huge wooden structures exclusively to set them on fire
at night. On that particular night, July 11th, the sky was overcast, with a slight
drizzle. I was alone that night (the family had left the city because of expected rioting
and shootings) watching the evening sky grow darker and darker. By 10 p.m as I
stood in the doorway watching the sky I couldn't help but be in awe; the entire sky
was a bright orange. The bonfires set by the Protestants were done as a reminder of
the defeat the Catholics experienced 305 years previous at the hands of William of
Orange at the Battle of Boyne. Standing in the doorway, I could see others in the
neighborhood looking at the sky as well, but what I saw was not the look of awe or
amazement, but of oppression and disdain. The pain was obvious. Years of
discrimination, prejudice and hatred were clearly written on their faces. For the first


time I shared what it might feel like to be Catholic in Belfast. The feeling is difficult
to explain, but it might be compared to a victim of a brutal attack or a personal
violation, who is left feeling dirty, unwanted and a second-class citizen. I had never
experienced anything quite like that in all my life. It was a feeling I will never forget.
The following day, Kevin, a neighbor, came over to speak about mundane
events, but I wanted to know more about how he felt about the celebration. We went
for a drive to get out of the area, to "clear the air." During the next two hours,
although the conversation was extraordinarily illuminating, I found out a lot about
what it was like to five in Ballymuiphy. He spoke of generational unemployment, of
opportunities not available because of your last name, or where you lived. Kevin
indicated that applications for work do not require divulging your religion, however,
last names tell a tale that soon disqualifies you for any employment opportunities.
During the afternoon drive (which occurred on July 12th-Orange Day) we passed
through at least six smaller towns that hugged the coast of Northern Ireland.
Entering these towns graphically portrayed their loyalty to the Crown; we were in the
Loyalist (Protestant) part of the world, where Catholics are not invited and not
wanted. He asked me about my feelings in light of the overwhelming displays of the
Union Jack, the parades, the anti-Catholic slogans and graffiti. I remember getting
very quiet. I told him that I felt a certain shame and a pain that I could not identify.
He responded by only saying "you must be Catholic then."
The recent trips I have made to Northern Ireland have dramatically altered my
perception of the conflict. However, I feel it noteworthy to mention that I made
XI


every attempt to gather information from both sides of the conflict to substantiate the
findings and conclusions 1 have arrived at in this thesis. I took the time to re-evaluate
the data gathered five years previous, and although very valuable, the information I
have obtained since has moved me to re-think my positioning on the conflict. I think
the opportunity to experience the conflict from a different perspective permitted me
to effectively weigh the data, to personalize it and re-present it in a way that
experientially validates the contents of this thesis.
The fieldwork I have done in the past three years has produced a greater
hunger for understanding the nature of social and ethnic conflict. Currently, the
situation in Belfast remains in a state of limbo. The lives of those living in Belfast
remain unchanged; the Catholic remains unemployable and continues to be the focus
of prejudice and discrimination. Conflict is something inevitable, however, the social
conditions that are created by people can be changed, if their society desires. Social
justice is a cause that needs more champions. The IRA are the champions for the
Catholics in the North of Ireland. Although consensus does not exist regarding their
methods, they have however, been an effective mechanism in producing significant
changes in the lives of Catholics in Belfast. The IRA's "confrontational politics" has
moved the British to the negotiating table, thus altering the direction of a society
unwilling to acknowledge the rights of all its citizens.
I anticipate that not all who read this paper will be in agreement with what I
found and concluded. However, I hope that I have provided an opportunity for my
reader to be receptive to the implications of my findings. I intend to continue my
Xll


research into the issues of social and ethnic conflict in Northern Ireland. The issues
that exist in Northern Ireland are very complex. The issues are not just about being a
Catholic or a Protestant. The issues confronting peace negotiators are difficult to due
to the ethnic nature of the conflict in conjunction with the socio-economic, political,
and historical issues. This conflict represents philosophical, sociological, and
religious differences equally as complicated as the current issues in Bosnia, the middle
East and Africa. Social and ethnic conflict is something that few fully understand and
fewer know how to resolve, but it is a subject that will require greater understanding
in the future.
Xlll


CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION
In July of 1995,1 found myself being accompanied to a local bar in the
Ballymurphy section of Belfast, Northern Ireland. Those with me were residents of
Ballymuiphy, a community that represents the heart of the Catholic Republican
movement. The evening was full of questions about and introductions to participants
in the Republican freedom movement. The groundwork was being laid for trust. This
was my fourth visit in as many years, but this visit became one that would minimize
the importance of previous visits, because it was then I would experience first hand
what it was like to be a Catholic in Belfast. The visit fell on the heels of the July 12th
celebration, in which the Protestants celebrate the conquering of the Catholics in 1695
by marching through the streets of Belfast (the Orange Day parade). As was the case
each year at this time, the air in Belfast was filled with anticipation, fear, hatred, and
conflict by those residing in the Catholic sections of West Belfast. On the eve of the
Orange Day parade the sky was overcast with a slight drizzle of rain. I remember
standing in the doorway and watching the illuminated sky, a sky of bright orange from
the numerous bonfires that had been started for this celebration! However, the
celebration could only be enjoyed by the Protestants, because the frees of the Catholic
residents of Ballymurphy on that night quickly reminded me of the pain and anger
they must have been experiencing.
The research question addressed in this thesis is why the conflict in Belfast,
Northern Ireland continues to this day. This thesis examines some of the causal
mechanisms of conflict that have been identified through various literature, the


thoughts of social scientists who have studied conflict, and ethnographic fieldwork 1
have carried out over the years.
I first became interested in the conflict in Northern Ireland in 1969, shortly
after the "troubles" began. To gather information for this thesis I made numerous
trips to develop a network of people who would feel comfortable enough with me to
divulge their personal feelings and experiences from both the Catholic and Protestant
communities in Belfast. The fieldwork represented in this thesis occurred over a
period of five years, and especially the last eighteen months when I made two trips.
The second chapter of this thesis details the historical perspectives of the
conflict that has been on going for the past twenty seven years. "Free Ireland," the
chapter title frames a story of the "troubles" utilizing a mural painted on the side of a
house. Although history of the conflict in Ireland dates nearly eight hundred years,
this thesis focuses on the events of the past twenty seven years. Historical data back
to the turn of the century also provide a background to current problems.
The third chapter of this thesis explores how social science explains conflict.
Seminal work in the field of social conflict was done by Marx, Weber, Durkheim, and
Simmel. In the late fifties, conflict theorists such as Ralf Dahrendorf emerged with
perspectives on social conflict as social process, as opposed to earlier theorists who
focused on social order and structure. Central to Dahrendorf s thesis was the
differential distribution of authority. He maintained that although issues surrounding
conflict were more a means of maintaining the status quo, conflict could also lead to
change and development. This chapter defines the nature of conflict and provides a
definition. Although the word "conflict" often brings to mind social destruction,
many social scientists view conflict as a positive, healthy, and socially constructive
entity.
2


"Perspectives of Participants in the Conflict" is the title of the fourth chapter.
In this segment of the thesis, political perspectives are examined from both the
Catholic and Protestant perspectives. Political changes that have occurred in
Northern Ireland are viewed quite differently by both sides and this chapter identifies
the differences that currently exist. The ethnic division that exists in Northern Ireland
has plummeted to depths beyond reach. It is very difficult to separate constitutional
views of the Catholic and Protestants due to the complexity of the issues that
surround the ethnic conflict. However, the epistemological differences that exist
between the Catholics and Protestants are manifested in their respective interpretation
of the world around them. The issues at the center of the conflict in Northern Ireland
revolve around equality, self-determination, and justice, but as previously stated each
of these issues are viewed quite differently.
Chapter five, "Ballymurphy: A Community of Resistance," addresses the lives
of those people at the heart of the conflict. The 12,000 residents of Ballymurphy
have had to endure battlefield conditions, poor housing, and little opportunity for
employment, and yet they have survived. Since the conflict erupted in 1969, they
have also had to endure the break-up of families due to imprisonment. Although
many years have passed since 1969, this community has developed an intricate
network of support that has allowed it to exemplify solidarity and organization.
Ballymurphy developed associations directly involved with issues surrounding
housing, medical facilities, the handicapped, unemployment, daycare, and banking.
Life in areas such as Ballymurphy is far from normal and far from the standards
enjoyed by the European community at large. This is a community with tremendous
pride and tenacity, a community that has a dream and is willing to continue to
struggle until that dream becomes a reality.
3


The sixth chapter of this thesis, "Conflict lnteipretation:Field Analysis,"
presents information obtained through interviews conducted during my visits to the
area. This chapter re-visits the Ballymuiphy community and explores what has been
done to improve living conditions from those directly involved. In Belfast
employment opportunities vary for Catholics and Protestants. Discrimination in areas
of employment and housing has been thoroughly documented. Employment and
housing opportunities are interpreted quite differently from both sides of the conflict
in Belfast. The chapter also re-examines some historical data, revealing the extensive
suffering the Catholic population has endured at the hands of the Protestant majority.
Although Catholics have been the focal point of attention, the Protestants have
experienced what they perceive as a "betrayal" by the British government. Also in
this chapter the issue of equality is brought back to the forefront. Once again the
interpretations of equality are as different as night and day. The Protestants maintain
that discretion should be equally and individually exercised, maintaining the traditions
and values that are held by the Protestant majority should be upheld rather than the
special agendas created by the Catholics.
The final chapter, "Our Day Will Come," reflects on the struggle between the
rich and the poor. The conflict in Belfast is a conflict over discrimination, repression
and the right to own property. This conflict is also one of interpretation of the past
and how the future will be shaped. The violence in Northern Ireland has proven to be
an effective and perhaps rational means of achieving a political end. The politics in
Northern Ireland have become confrontational politics, but have been effective in
providing the Catholics with an improved bargaining position. The chapter concludes
by identifying the entrenched interests of the British government and the Protestants,
combined with the distribution of authority and social stratification as the root causes
4


of the violence. The stratification that exists continues to fuel the flames of conflict,
and only exacerbates ethnic, religious, and ideological differences.
5


CHAPTER 2
"FREE IRELAND": HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVES
In Belfast, behind what once was a bakery (before an explosion), there stands
a row of houses on the Falls Road. Painted on the side of a comer house in bright
blue are the words "Free Ireland," and a mural deliberately painted to depict a country
tom by conflict and held captive by a foreign government. The mural depicts the
country of Ireland (painted green) in the center, surrounded by an orange circle with a
white background. In the middle of the picture is an arm shackled and bleeding,
clutching a flower. In the four comers of the building are symbolic representations of
Irish pride. In one comer of the building is a harp, in another the symbol of the
phoenix, and in the other two comers are more traditional symbols depicting family
crests. At the top of the building, which is pitched at the top, is a portrayal of the
center of government for Northern Ireland, Stormont Castle, in flames, and rising
from the flames is the Irish Republican Army's (IRA) phoenix symbol, with the years
1916 and 1990 on either side. The walls in Belfast portray stories of repression,
oppression, victory, and defeat, recounting the stories of a people and their struggle
against prejudice and discrimination.
Current history of the "troubles" in Northern Ireland began in 1969 when the
Irish population attempted to mimic the American civil rights movement. The issues
were similar in nature: housing, employment, access to education, prejudice and
discrimination. In 1969 a civil rights march turned violent, forever changing the face
of Belfast and Northern Ireland. The "war of rights" emerged from the ashes of 1969,
with a Catholic population experiencing unemployment of nearly ninety percent in
6


some areas of Belfast. Mr. Peter Viggers (Minister at the Northern Ireland Office)
stated "it cannot be either fair or reasonable that two and a half times as many Roman
Catholics are unemployed as Protestants. The Catholic population turned to the IRA
as the representative voice of the oppressed, seeking a means of political action and
retribution.
As the "war of rights" progressed in 1969, the Royal Ulster Constabulary
(RUC) was quickly losing control of the general population. Neither the RUC nor
any of the special police units had experience or training in handling "non-violent"
demonstrations linked to "civil rights." When, in, Mid-August 1969 civil
demonstrations turned to riots at both Bogside and Belfast, a situation no longer
controllable by the police was created. Thus by invitation of the Protestant majority,
the British military entered Northern Ireland to end the civil disobedience that had
plagued the North of Ireland.
The presence of the British military intensified, rather than reduced the
conflict. By 1970 street violence dramatically increased, escalating from stone
throwing, to gasoline bombs, nail bombs, and finally the use of guerrilla warfare
techniques such as firearms, car bombs, and incendiary devices. The voice of the
Catholic people was now being heard, a voice which matured as it increasingly
challenged the RUC and the British military. Robert Moss, in his book Urban
Guerrilla, throws into high relief the nature of the challenge posed by the emerging
guerrilla organization:
To the extent that it (the Provisional IRA) has a long range strategy
at all, is to spark off a political crisis in Ulster in order to provoke
direct intervention from Westminister or a Protestant backlash so
violent that it would lead to outright civil war between the Catholic
and Protestant communities and possibly compel the Dublin government
to intervene. Provisional spokesman have sometimes discussed these
possibilities in ludicrously unrealistic terms. In March 1971, for example,
7


the Provisionals claimed that they had formed an urban guerrilla force in the
North capable of a protracted campaign that would lead to the collapse
of the Stormont government and direct rule from Westminster. They
prophesied that world opinion would then force the British to hand the
province over to the United Nations, which would proceed to divide it into
Catholic and Protestant zones. The IRA would follow this up by a program
of selective assassinations designed to kill the leaders of the Protestant
community, thus clearing the way for the unresisting absorption of Ulster into
a United Irish Republic. The last stages in this IRA scenario are pure fantasy:
but it is important to note that the first stage is a very real possibility
(Moss: 1971).
January 29, 1972 saw the worst confrontation with security forces to date, an
incident which galvanized world attention. In that conflict, aptly named "Bloody
Sunday," members of a crack British regiment fired wantonly and indiscriminately into
a mass of civil demonstrators. Thirteen people were killed. A variety of disputes
over responsibility arose regarding whether or not the crowd was armed. Witnesses
maintained the shootings were in fact "discriminate" rather than "indiscriminate."
At the height of the turmoil in 1972, shootings totaled more than 11,000;
bombings in that year reached nearly 2,000; and the death toll for the year stood at
nearly 500 people, with 150 of those deaths attributable to British security forces.
The British military presence peaked in 1972 with over 22,000 troops. In addition,
approximately 6,000 local people (Protestants) were aiding in the defense of the
Ulster province. The RUC had more than 12,000 men, with a budget of over 1.75
million dollars per day. Since 1969 over 260 members of this organization have been
killed, despite the impressive resources of the RUC, the vast majority at the hands of
the IRA.
British Peace Initiatives
Over the past two decades, successive British governments have used every
known political tactic to persuade the leaders of the Loyalists (Protestants) to
relinquish some of their demands and to accept and participate in the ongoing political
8


negotiations with the Nationalists. The initiatives proposed by the Nationalists
(Catholics) revolve around the principle of "shared power," which means essentially
an equal voice in the governing of Northern Ireland. Although disturbing to
Loyalists, this principle was adopted by the British government prior to 1985 and is
considered part of a political settlement needed to suspend the bloodshed.
It was not until Margaret Thatcher took office that any real movement
towards resolution of this conflict began. Although firmly opposed to terrorism, the
Prime Minister sought consensual agreement between officials from both sides of the
political divide with the introduction of the "Anglo-Irish Agreement." This document,
signed on November 15, 1985, was to have introduced peace and stability, combined
with reconciliation with the North of Ireland.
The Anglo-Irish agreement introduced by the Thatcher government was
designed to increase political dialogue between the Catholic and Protestant population
in an effort to resolve and reduce tension and subsequent acts of terrorism Certain
articles of this agreement address the issue of devolution, which was supported by the
Irish government as a means to shift responsibility for certain powers to elected
representatives. Additionally, issues of human rights, discrimination and the necessity
of protecting the identities of the two historical traditions highlighted in this document
are of paramount importance. At the heart of the agreement were proposed solutions
to social and economic problems that had long plagued the North of Ireland. These
included: development of incentive programs to businesses to enhance the economic
stability of the community and provide employment for the general population. The
British believed that through increased involvement in the peace process they Would
develop a heightened cognizance of the dilemmas facing Northern Ireland, better
positioning Great Britain to provide greater assistance in the solutions of any potential
problems.
9


The Unionists' (Protestants) perception of this agreement was that was aligned
Britain with Republican (Catholic) demands and therefore ultimately placed control of
the six counties in Northern Ireland then under British rule (Ulster) in the hands of
Dublin, effectively uniting the country. Because Northern Ireland is viewed by the
Unionists as a separate country, the prospect of Republican control was a significant
threat to their position. The Unionist disagreement with the Anglo-Irish agreement
stemmed from the fear of losing a majority standing in Northern Ireland and three
hundred years of de facto union with Great Britain. The potential loss of power and
the inability to determine its own sovereignty compelled this faction to take an
intransigent stance.
The Unionists filed a lawsuit to block the introduction of unification wording
in the Anglo-Irish agreement. To the delight of the Unionists, the Irish supreme
court partially legitimized the Unionist stance, by stating "that the two governments
merely recognize the situation on the ground in Northern Ireland and form a political
judgment about the likely course of future events." This was a partial victory to the
Unionists insofar as it removed any language pertaining to reunification The
Republicans' position as stated in Article Two of the agreement reaffirms the language
of the Irish constitution, declaring that the "national territory consists of the whole
island of Ireland" (Coogan 1993)
The IRA and Sinn Fein
The civil rights movement in Northern Ireland was the catalyst for the
resurgence of the IRA. In 1969, the Catholics ofBelfast were confronted by British
security forces and the RUC during a civil rights demonstration. What resulted was a
a battle that for the first time witnessed Catholics standing up for themselves before a
superior force over issues of civil rights. Consequently, the Catholic population was
forced off the streets and into the arms of the IRA.
10


The Irish Republican Army is nearly 140 years old. The organization,
originally called the Irish Republican Brotherhood, was formed by James Stephens
and Thomas Clark Luby on St. Patrick's day in 1858. It was formed doe to the social
dislocations resulting from famine, widespread unemployment, and migration to the
United States. An American counterpart of the Irish Republican Brotherhood called
(Clann Na Gael) was bom at the same time. It was formed by John O' Mahoney.
After having been thwarted in numerous military referendums over a period of
70 years, in 1916, the Irish Republican Brotherhood gathered its volunteers
numbering nearly 1200, to force militarily the issue of home rule on the British
government. In response, the British soldiers easily defeated the Irish Republican
Brotherhood on Easter Monday, April 24,1916. Many of those captured were
imprisoned; others were able to escape and fled the country. This incident marks the
first formal uprising the Irish people attempted (Coogan 1994).
The Sinn Fein organization appeared first in 1905, but did not become
important politically until 1917. In the constitutional convention of 1917, Sinn Fein
drafted a resolution that would allow the Irish people the right to freely choose their
own form of government. The remnants of the Irish Republican Brotherhood joined
forces with the Sinn Fein organization this same year.
In March of 1921, the parliament accepted responsibility for the actions of the
newly named and now formally recognized Irish Republican Army. However, in
1922, after a treaty to set up an Irish Free State as a self-governing dominion of Great
Britain had been ratified, a group of anti-treaty members of parliament conducted a
convention in which a new constitution was drawn up stipulating:
The Army shall be known as the Irish Republican Army. It shall
be on a purely volunteer Army basis. Its objects shall be: (1) to safeguard
the honour and maintain the independence of the Irish Republic, (2) to protect
the rights and liberties common to the people of Ireland, (3) to place its
11


services at the disposal of an established Republican Government which
faithfully upholds the above objects (Cooganl994:23).
The position of the Irish Republican Army since its inception in 1916 has been
one of sustained resistance and implacable hostility toward the British. The Irish
Republican Army maintains that its moral position to engage in warfare is based on:
(1) the right to resist foreign aggression, (2) the right to revolt against tyranny and
oppression, and finally (3) the direct lineal succession with the provisional
government of 1916, the first parliament of 1919, and the second parliament of 1921.
The strategy employed by the Irish Republican Army is one of created
resistance, channeled into both active and passive support in an effort to stop any
isolation methods incorporated by the British government. The aspect of actively
seeking support locally, nationally, and internationally is perhaps one of the reasons
this organization has and continues to be so effective in its struggle against the British
government. Groups that have support within and from the outside can continue to
wage the war they want, and do so quite effectively.
The artist painted "Free Ireland" on the side of the house on the Falls Road,
but peace can only be achieved once the causes of the conflict have been addressed.
In this scenario, where the conflict is political, peace is only attainable through a
political process and subsequent political solution. The conflict in Northern Ireland is
a result of centuries of refusal by the British government to acknowledge Northern
Ireland's right to national independence and self-determination.
The position of the IRA and Sinn Fein is that Ireland's right to reunification,
independence, and sovereignty as well as the right to self-determination be realistically
appraised under international law. In numerous covenants recognized by the United
Nations the issue of self-determination is clearly stated in Article One of each
covenant, stating: "all peoples have the right to self-determination. By virtue of that
12


right they determine their economic, social and cultural development" (Adams 1994).
Everyone involved in current peace negotiations who claims to be actively seeking a
permanent peace must embrace the universally accepted principles of self-
determination. Gerry Adams, in his book Free Ireland states:
Self-determination is accepted to mean a nation's right to exercise
the political freedom to determine its development without external
influence and without partial or total disruption of national unity or
territorial integrity. The refusal to allow the Irish people to exercise
their right to self-determination has been British government policy.
That policy is the root cause of conflict in Ireland. Furthermore, that
policy and the measures taken to maintain it are the cause of the ruptures
in relationships between the Irish people themselves, and between Ireland
and Britain (Adams 1994:171).
The political conflict in Northern Ireland, resulting from the partitioning of the
country, has created social and economic problems that have spelled disaster for those
in modest to lower end employment positions. Demographically, Northern Ireland is
5,469 square miles (see map, pgl6) and supports a population of 1,577,836 people.
The industry sector of the six counties employs approximately 34,000 in the
engineering and ship building, with another 10,400 being employed in the textiles.
The food and drink industry of Northern Ireland manages to employ approximately
22,000 people, with other smaller industries (self-employed) picking up the remainder
(those employed in agriculture were not accounted for in the latest census survey of
the workforce). The partitioning of the six counties in the north has led to
widespread job discrimination, and exorbitant expenditures on security measures.
The separation of the North from the Republic (South) has created a state of external
dependency, resulting in industrial underdevelopment and emigration., while at the
same time creating poverty that exceeds European levels.
If peace is to be achieved in Northern Ireland, the long standing conflict that
exists between the Republicans (Catholics) and the Loyalists (Protestants) must be
13


settled. This can only be accomplished through constructive dialogue and focused
debate over the issues that have created the conflict. While both sides of the accord
recognize the stumbling blocks to a successful peace process, it is vital that there be
created a new concept in the political arena in Northern Ireland, to promote a win-win
scenario.
Demilitarization is recognized By both Great Britain and Northern Ireland as a
necessary first step towards the achievement of a lasting peace in Northern Ireland.
However, it is important to note that the British army entered Northern Ireland in
1969, not in response to paramilitary activity by the IRA, but to assist in a political
and security crisis created by the Loyalists (Protestants) in direct response to the civil
rights movement of the late sixties.
The following passage is quoted from "Poblacht na hEireann," the Provincial
Government of the Irish Republic:
"Irishmen and Irishwomen: In the name of God and the dead
generations from which she receives her old tradition of nationhood,
Ireland, through us, summons her children to her flag and strikes
for her freedom
Having organised and trained her manhood through her secret
revolutionary organisation, the Irish Republican Brotherhood, and
through her open military organisations, the Irish Volunteers and the
Irish Citizen Army, having patiently perfected her discipline, having
resolutely waited for the right moment to reveal itself she now seizes
that moment and, supported by her exiled children in America and by
gallant allies in Europe, but relying in the first on her own strength, she
strikes in full confidence ofvictory.
We declare the right of the people of Ireland to the ownership of
Ireland and to the unfettered control of Irish destinies, to be sovereign
and indefeasible. The long usurpation of that right by a foreign people
and government has not extinguished the right, nor can it ever be
extinguished except by the destruction of the Irish people. In every
generation the Irish people have asserted their right for national freedom
14


and sovereignty: six times during the past three hundred years they have
asserted it in arms. Standing on the fundamental right and again it in aims
in the face of the world, we hereby proclaim the Irish Republic as a
Sovereign Independent State, and we pledge our lives and the lives of our
comrades-in-arms to the cause of its freedom, of its welfare and of its
exaltation among the nations.
The Irish Republic is entitled to, and hereby claims, the allegiances of
every Irishman and Irishwoman. The Republic guarantees religious and
civil liberty, equal rights and equal opportunities to all its citizens, and
declares its resolve to pursue the happiness and prosperity of the whole
nation and allof its parts, cherishing all the children of the nation equally,
and oblivious of the differences, carefully fostered by an alien government,
which have divided a minority from the majority in the past.
Until our arms have brought the opportune moment for the establishing
of a permanent national Government, representative of the whole people
of Ireland, and elected by the suffrages of all her men and women, the
Provisional Government, hereby constituted, will administer the civil and
military affairs of the Republic in trust for the people. We place the cause
of the Irish Republic under the protection of the Most High God, Whose
blessing we invoke upon our arms, and we pray that no one who serves that
cause will dishonor it by cowardice, inhumanity or rapine. In this supreme
hour the Irish nation must, by its own valour and discipline, and by the
readiness of its children to sacrifice themselves for the common good, prove
itself worthy of the august destiny to which it is called.." (Adams 1994:207).
Signed on behalf of the Provisional Government
Thomas J. Clarke
Sean MacDiarmada Thomas MacDonagh
P.H. Pearse Eamonn Ceannt
Janmes Connolly Joseph Plunkett
"Free Ireland" is a wall in Belfast, a message to the world and its people. The
walls in Belfast represent much more than picturesque mural accomplishments: they
represent a country tom apart politically, socially, economically, and ideologically.
The walls in Belfast depict a charge, a challenge, a warning, and a plea for peace.
15


NORTHERN IRELAND
miles
0 20 30
u '
20 30 40
imeters
16


CHAPTER 3
THEORIES OF CONFLICT
This chapter explores how social scientists explain conflict. I work toward an
understanding of the conflict found in Northern Ireland.
Conflict is a word generally associated with social destructiveness, however,
many social scientists view conflict as socially transformative and partially
constructive. Conflict is an essential element of progressive change. Marxist-based
thought is viewed as negative if it fails to produce social change. From a structural
functionalist's perspective, the opposite applies: conflict is only viewed in a positive
light if it contributes to social order, and negatively if social order is destroyed.
Some of the earliest work done in the area of social conflict by
anthropologists was shaped by such thinkers as Marx, Weber, Durkheim, and Simmel,
who at that time were strongly influenced by structural functionalism. The structural
functionalist, Radcliffe-Brown, maintained that structure consisted of a network of
social relations and institutions that together comprised the framework of society.
Function, on the other hand, acted as the stabilizing vehicle for social relationships
within society. In the past three decades, structural-functionalism has largely Mien
out of favor in social science. The primary critique is that it is "monolithic" in its
approach to issues of social conflict, social change and social stability. However,
social scientist Mark Abrahamson (1978) argued that structural-functionalism was not
monolithic in its approach to conflict, citing: (1) individualistic functionalism, which
focuses on the needs of actors as well as structures that emerge as functional
responses to those needs; (2) interpersonal functionalism, focusing on social
17


relationships, and in particular the mechanisms to accommodate strains that exist in
relationships] (3) societal functionalism, which focuses on large scale social structures
and institutions of society, their interrelationships, and their constraining or liberating
effects on actors.
Sluka points out that since the late fifties and early sixties anthropological
interest in issues of social conflict tended to focus on national liberation struggles, as
well as the conflicts associated with the decolonization of third world countries (Sluka
1992). Conflict theorists such as Ralf Dahrendorf introduced a perspective that
emphasized social conflict and social process as opposed to social order and social
structure. Although Dahrendorf s approach was argued and contested by those
remaining in the structural-functionalist canoqp, his approach in combination with
structure and process became widely accepted. Dahrendorf focused on the processes
of social change. Where functionalism emphasized orderliness, conflict theorists saw
the dissension and conflict within the social system. Dahrendorf chose to emphasize
the role of power in maintaining order in society:
"society had two distinct faces (conflict and consensus) and that
sociological theory should be divided into two parts, conflict
theory and consensus theory. Consensus theorists should examine
value integration in society, and conflict theorists should examine
conflicts of interest and the coercion that holds society together in
the face of these stresses" (Dahrendorf 1968:268).
Dahrendorf although heavily influenced by structural functionalism, noted
that functionalism focused on voluntary cooperation or general consensus as the glue
that held society together, as opposed to the "enforced constraint" that conflict
theorists maintain. Central to Dahrendorf s conflict thesis was that "differential
distribution of authority invariably becomes the determining factor of systemic social
conflicts" (1959:165). Dahrendorf felt that issues surrounding conflict were more
18


than a means to maintain the status quo; he maintained that conflict also led to change
and development as well Dahrendoif maintained that once conflict groups emerge,
the action they engage in leads to changes in social structure. When conflict is
intensified, the changes that occur are radical. When change is accomplished by
violence, structural change will be sudden. Whatever the nature of conflict, we must
be acutely aware of the relationship between conflict and change as well as that
between conflict and the status quo.
What is the nature of social conflict? How can it be defined? Conflict is
considered a cultural universal that varies in form and content, intensity and even the
general meaning from one society to another. From the perspective of anthropology,
Lewis Coser provides the following definition:
social conflict is a "struggle over values and claims to status,
power, and scarce resources, in which the aims of the
conflicting parties are not only to gain the desired values, but
also to neutralize, injure, or eliminate their rivals. Social conflict
involves a test of power between antagonistic parties, and while
such conflict may include violence, other more subtle but equally
significant forms of conflict exist as well (Coser 1968:232).
Anthropologists typically view conflict as a cultural phenomenon. It has been
maintained that culture cannot be separated from the issue of conflict, due in part to
the cultural factors that give rise to or support conflict. "Conflict relations are
objectified, developed, maintained, expressed, or camouflaged by means of symbolic
forms and patterns of symbolic action-that is, by symbolism or culture (a complex
system of symbolic meanings)" (Shika 1992:24). Approaching conflict from a
cultural perspective requires referencing the norms, values, ideologies, and the
collective world view held by the participants of society.
19


As noted, many social scientists view conflict as a positive, necessary, healthy,
or constructive. Simmel was the first to pursue and consequently promulgate the
duality of conflict when he stated:
"Actual society does not result only from...social forces which are
positive (integrating), and only to the extent that the negative
factors do not hinder them. This common conception is quite
superficial: Society...is the result of both categories of interaction
(positive and negative or integrating and disintegrating), which thus
manifest themselves as wholly positive" (Simmel 1955:16).
Coser argued that it would be incorrect to make distinctions between
"system and power conflict models of society." Coser maintained that:
The analysis of social conflicts brings to awareness aspects of
social reality that may be obscured if analytical attention focuses too
exclusively on phenomena of social order; but exclusive attention to
conflict phenomena may obscure the central importance of social
order and needs to be corrected by a correlative concern with the
ordered aspects of social life. We deal here not with distinct realities
but only with differing aspects of the same reality, so that exclusive
emphasis on one or the other is likely to lead the analyst astray. Perhaps
we need return now to Charles Horton Cooley's statement: The more
one thinks of it the more he will see that conflict and co-operation are
not separable things, but phases of one process which always involves
something of both (Coser 1968:235-236).
Conflict can and has contributed to social stability, order, and the maintenance
of the status quo, as well as to social disequilibrium and change. From a Marxist
perspective on conflict, class conflict is the central mechanism for progressive social
change. The tension between conflict and stability within society is the stimulus for
change and progress, however, when conflict resolution is unattainable through
normal channels, opposing factions are confronted with the opportunity to either
create new resolution strategies in order to resolve the conflict or devise a way in
which to avoid a recurrence.
20


Is it possible to view the conflict in Northern Ireland as an effective means to
achieve a political end? Nieburg, the author of Political Violence, observed that
violent tactics employed in the politics of confrontation were highly effective in
achieving political ends through the creation of better bargaining positions (Nieburg
1969). Nieburg went on to point out that preferential tactics of "working through the
establishment" were by and large unsuccessful or at least less effective than
confrontational politics. He suggested that in class society, powerful and dominant
groups are not willing participants in the relinquishment of their positions of power
and advantage. Seldom, if ever, have those in power been persuaded to change
through any moral persuasion or argument that would seemingly undermine their
position.
"Social stratification leads to such conflict-inducing factors
as ethnic, religious, and ideological discrimination; socioeconomic
deprivation; political inequality and its correlates such as infringement
of rights, injustice, and oppression; the absence of effective
channels of peaceful or systemic resolution of grievances and
conflicts; and, of course, exploitation and alienation" (Sluka 1992:31).
If the author is correct in his assessment of stratified societies, then we cannot
hope to alleviate those causes without a dramatic alteration of the structure itself
Berreman (1977) states that:
Present trends suggest a worldwide polarization in access to
power, privilege and resources-the gap between the "haves"
and the "have nots" increases with a diminishing willingness
among the poor to continue to suffer deprivation, and among
the wealthy to ameliorate it. The disparities must be ended,
and inevitably will be, by conflict if not by accommodation.
It would be to the advantage of everyone that it be done
graciously, quickly and well, lest it occur brutally, perhaps by
holocaust (Berreman 1977:236).
21


Conflict is an inevitability however social conditions are created. What can be
created can also be changed. By altering the conditions in which a society lives in and
under, the issues that create conflict and its violent manifestations will cease to
become a tool of political recourse to those in a disadvantaged position.
It has been argued that no society is ever unstratified, or totally classless.
Stratification is a functional necessity. For Marx, social classes rose out of acts of
production; people came to reify classes, and as a result classes developed a life of
their own that constrained the individual "actor." Max Weber, on the other hand, felt
that society was stratified on the basis of economics, status, and power. A "class" is a
group of people, whose shared societal situation defined by their role in an economic
system was the basis for action by the group as a whole. Weber contends that a
"class situation exists when three conditions are met: (1) a number of people have in
common a specific causal component of their life chances, in so far as (2) this
component is represented exclusively by economic interests in the possessions of
goods and opportunities for income, and (3) is represented under the conditions of the
commodity or labor markets" (Weber 1921/1968:927).
While classes exist in the realm of economics, and status exists in the social
realm, for Weber, parties could only be found in the political arena. Parties were
always viewed as structures struggling for dominion. Parties are the most organized
elements of Webers stratification system Generally, for Weber, parties represented
class/status groups. Whatever they represent, parties are oriented to the attainment of
power. Weber defined domination as "the probability that certain specific commands
(or all commands) will be obeyed by a given group of persons" (Weber
1921/1968:212). While domination possessed both legitimacy and illegitimacy, the
focus of Weber's attention was on the legitimate forms of domination, which he
referred to as authority.
22


Directly linking parallel development of rationalized science, law, politics, art,
literature, universities, and polity, Weber provides a framework for understanding
some of the root causes of the conflict in Northern Ireland. In an examination of
countries with mixed religious systems, Weber discovered the leaders of the economic
system, the business leaders, owners of capital, high grade skilled labor, and more
advanced technically and commercially trained personnel were overwhelmingly
Protestant. Protestantism appears to have been a significant cause in the choice of
these occupations and conversely, other religions (Catholics) failed to create
ideational systems that would cause individuals to gravitate towards those vocations.
What Protestantism succeeded in doing was to turn the pursuit of profit into a moral
crusade.
Max Weber tied the religious doctrine of predestination, which identified
whether a person was a member of God's community and therefore guaranteed a
place in heaven or not, to the emerging capitalist system Those individuals who
worked hard and pursued the capitalist agenda would experience the signs of
salvation, which were to be found in economic success. Calvinism (Protestantism)
provided the rising capitalist with a labor force of sober, conscientious, and unusually
industrious workmen who would cling to their work as being the will of God. With a
workforce that was dedicated to the fulfillment of economic success, the capitalist
was in a position to raise the level of exploitation of those unsaved to unprecedented
heights. The Protestantism of the workforce (Calvinists) further legitimized social
inequality by giving the capitalist the comforting assurances that the unequal
distribution of the goods of this world was a special dispensation of divine
providence.
Weber was inclined to see the study of the causes of social phenomena within
the realm of history. One issue that became critical to Weber's studies was the issue
23


of causality, simply put, the probability that an event would be followed or
accompanied by another event. Weber felt that a researcher had to look at the
reasons, as well as the meanings of historical changes. Because of this, Weber was
very clear on the issue of multiple causality in his study of the relationship between
Protestantism and the spirit of capitalism. Weber simply maintained that the
Protestant work ethic was one of the causal factors in the rise of modem capitalism.
Dahrendorf suggested that the differential distribution of authority will
invariably be the determinant of social conflict. With the emergence of conflict
groups, the social structure of a society is bound to change, and as the level of
conflict intensifies, so too does the level of radical behavior. "Social conflict is a
struggle over values and claims to status, power, and scarce resources, in which the
aim of the conflicting parties are not only to gain the desired values, but also to
neutralize, injure, or eliminate their rivals" (Coser 1968:232). Weber would contend
that at the heart of conflict are issues of multiple causalties that need to be addressed,
and that is the case in Northern Ireland. Jefferey Sluka maintained social stratification
led to conflict inducing factors such as ethnic, religious, and ideological
discrimination. Stratification is also tied to socioeconomic deprivation and political
inequality, which has led to civil rights infiingements, injustice and oppression.
In this chapter, I have discussed what some notable social scientists think
about conflict. But what do the participants and close observers of the conflict think?
The residents of Belfast who are involved in the day to day conflict have very strong
ideas about what is occurring and why. The struggle in Belfast is between the rich
and the poor, they say, but it is more than a straggle over work, property rights,
prejudice, and discrimination. In Belfast and all of the North of Ireland the struggle
involves the appropriation of symbols, a conflict of ideological interpretation, and a
24


contentious effort to give partisan meaning to local history. This is the subject of the
following chapter.
25


CHAPTER 4
PERSPECTIVES OF PARTICIPANTS IN THE CONFLICT
This chapter takes a close look at the political changes that have occurred in
Northern Ireland. The views of both Catholics and Protestants are examined. In
Northern Ireland, it is very difficult to separate political issues from constitutional
issues due to the complexity of the issues that surround the ethnic conflict. This can
be observed m the differences that exist between Catholics and Protestants in their
respective views of the world around them.
"SHANKILLNO-SURRENDER11: Perspectives of Loyalists (Protestants')
"We need to create a system of government, an identity and a
nationality to which both sections of the community can aspire.
We must look for the common denominator. The only common
denominator that the Ulster people have, whether they be Catholic
or Protestant, is that they are Ulsterman. And that is the basis
from which we should build the new life for the Ulster people, a
new identity for them Awaken them to their new identity. That
they are different. That they're not second-class Englishmen but
first-class Ulstermen. And that's where my loyalty is" (Barr 1994:102).
John McMichael, a spokesman for the Ulster Defense Authority (UDA) found
that although there is a tremendous dislike for the English and the government of
Westminster, there stills exists for the Crown. In his opinion, therefore, it would be
sensible and natural to assume that Catholics would readily accept the independence
that would be guaranteed within the structure of the European Economic Community
(EEC) and the Commonwealth in general. In 1987, amongst the political protests, the
26


civil disorder, and the increased assassinations then being experienced, the UDA
announced their opposition to majority rule in Ireland as well as some form of formal
power sharing. Instead, the UDA proposed "proportionality" in government,
suggesting that positions would be created or allocated on the basis of proportional
votes.
What we propose will probably be described by some as idealistic,
ambitious, fraught with difficulties and even dangerous to attempt,
but then so has anything that was ever worth doing. The most
dangerous thing to do, and unfortunately the most politically popular,
would be to do nothing (Bruce 1994:104)
The fear of the Loyalists is the removal or voluntary departure of the British.
It is generally felt that it is only a matter of time before the British actually leave. The
fear is that they will be unable to defend themselves once the British pull out. There
is general consensus that withdrawal is imminent and that they will have to fight for
an independent Ulster. Paralleling the IRA's agenda, the UDA's commitment to a
democratic peace process is secondary to the pursuit of ethnic interests. The
Loyalists present their case as worthy due in part of the desire of the "majority" within
the six counties in Ulster to remain under British rule.
Although not opposed to a devolved administrative structure, the Loyalists are
willing to entertain any governmental structure that will prevent the "tyranny of the
majority," yet seem unwilling to accept any "division" of power that will guarantee an
equal say in government by Catholics and Protestants. Shared power is rejected on
the basis that is violates the basis of liberal, vote based democracy, and it does not
represent the views of many Ulster Catholics who do not want a unified Ireland.
Though there is disapproval of the measures taken by the IRA and its acts of violence,
as well as the "anti-Catholic" rhetoric of the evangelicals, involvement of the
government of Dublin is considered out of the question. What becomes
27


fundamentally important is to realize that the Protestants in Northern Ireland have
been there for many generations, view themselves as British, and are vehemently
opposed to the threats to their British citizenship. The fear created in those of
Loyalist persuasion could be described as the British government deciding that it no
longer wants to or is willing to protect its citizens in their empire from those who
would want to annex its territory for its own use.
There is increasingly widespread belief that the British government is
intentionally directing resources and policies to benefit the Republican minority. The
threatened loss of British support has strengthened Loyalist resolve to maintain a
Northern Ireland that remains in British control. The Protestants widely believe that a
unified Ireland would create a governmental structure that would be controlled by the
Catholic population. Protestants maintain that unattentive British treatment of the
Loyalist position has diminished their sense of being "British." It has, however,
dramatically increased their individual sense of being "Ulster Loyalists."
In the 1970's and the 1980's, two major political milestones were achieved in
Northern Ireland: the Sunningdale power-sharing agreement of 1974 and the Anglo-
Irish accord of 1985. Under the Sunningdale agreement, power was to be shared by
people who were only minor representatives of political parties. What this amounted
to was representation of one's own ethnic group. To Loyalists the Anglo-Irish accord
of 1985 was an agreement between two liberal democracies, which approached
Northern Ireland's problem not in terms of rights and privileges of the individual but
in terms of collectivities. As noted by numerous Loyalists, it is quite clear that one of
the consequences of any redistributive social policy has been strategically designed to
further alienate the Loyalist position in Northern Ireland. This positioning by the
Westminster government struck an emotional chord in the hearts of the Loyalists,
sounding the inevitable consequence of the divisional restructuring in each of the
28


Northern provinces. Citing any initiative that was designed (for example) to
ameliorate poverty, unemployment, housing issues, would automatically be regarded
by one side as insufficient and by the other as entirely too generous.
Loyalists view the political changes that have occurred in Northern Ireland in
the past years as having been designed to induce Catholic support for the British
government. As a consequence Loyalist opposition has been galvanized. Loyalists
have concluded that the ethnic divisions that exist in Northern Ireland have now
plummeted to depths beyond reach. The question has been asked of an alternative
approach to the problems that exist in Northern Ireland, that of merely assuming one
position and holding to that decision. However, in light of recent activity, the IRA
does not appear likely to accept the invitation of John Major's Westminster's
parliament and renounce violence. Loyalists suggest that the British government
could call a halt to any further speculation about the constitutional position of
Northern Ireland.
Loyalist often revert to the discussion of the British government's "guarantee"
to the Loyalists in Northern Ireland, and the difficulties surrounding the explanation
of why these promises were not reciprocal between both Catholics and Protestants.
Loyalists cite the 1973, Northern Ireland Constitution Act:
It is hereby declared that Northern Ireland remains part of Her
Majesty's Dominions and of the United Kingdom, and it is
hereby affirmed that in no event will Northern Ireland or any part
of it cease to be part of Her Majesty's Dominions and of the
United Kingdom without the consent of the majority of the people
of Northern Ireland voting in a poll held for that puipose (Bruce 1994:67).
In the early days of the "troubles" in Northern Ireland, the assertion by the
British that Northern Ireland would remain British as long as the majority wanted had
the appearance of a solid promise. Therefore the Loyalists had little concern or fear
29


that anything would ever undermine that policy. In 1985 the Loyalists were again
encouraged by the language contained in the Anglo-Irish accord with reference to the
positioning of the British government on the status of Northern Ireland and the
majority will of the people. In recent years, the increase in the proportion of the
Catholic population in Northern Ireland has been threatening. Ian Paisley, a
Loyalist/Unionist leader, concedes that the Catholic population could increase to
majority status in the next thirty years. The question that now faces all of those
considered Loyalists, is "What if the Catholics voted to leave the United Kingdom?"
The Anglo-Irish accord created a framework within which the Loyalists now
interpret every salient event in their world. This accord is an example that generates
concern among Loyalists because it includes governmental pressure to redistribute
resources from the Protestant areas of Belfast to the Catholic sections. The accord
also legislated fair-employment practices, and addressed concerns regarding the re-
routing away from Catholic neighborhoods of the Orange parade on My 12th that
celebrates the conquering of Ireland. Loyalist interpretation of this intervention is
that it represents Dublin's successful attempt to dictate to and govern the North
through the Westminster government of John Major. As a consequence of these
perceptions, the Loyalists now want the Anglo-Irish accord scrapped and all the links
that exist between the North and the South of Ireland reduced to those appropriate to
those governing the relations between between two entirely separate states. They
allege that this was promised in 1925 by both the Irish and British governments but
never fulfilled. It is also important to the Loyalist position that Articles 2 and 3 from
the 1937 constitution of the Republic of Ireland be removed. Article 1 states; "The
Irish nation hereby affirms its inalienable, indefeasible, and sovereign right to choose
its own form of government, to determine its own relations with other nations, and to
develop its life, political, economic, and cultural, in accordance with its own genius
30


and traditions." Article 2 states: "The national territory consists of the whole island of
Ireland, its islands and the territorial seas." The Loyalists see Dublin's claim to the
North not merely as symbolic, but as the root cause of and the sustaining force behind
the violence that exists in Northern Ireland. Loyalists maintain that so long as the
Republic of Ireland asserts ownership of Northern Ireland, the IRA will continue its
pursuit of unification.
To the Loyalists it is one thing to explain the nature of the Northern Ireland
"troubles" as an "ethnic conflict." It is, however, something entirely different to
attempt to provide hope for any resolution. Bruce depicts the rather dismal tone of
the Loyalists position in Northern Ireland in this way:
What has been correctly understood by both Republicans and
Loyalists, but overlooked by analysts and successive Westminster
governments, is that there is no Northern Ireland "problem" The
word "problem" suggests that there is a solution; some outcome
which will please almost everybody more than it displeases almost
everybody. Conflict is a more accurate term for Protestant/Catholic
relationships in Northern Ireland. Conflicts have outcomes, not
solutions. Somebody wins and somebody loses (1994:147).
The Loyalists assert that attempts at solving or reducing the deep ethnic
divisions that exist will likely go in one of two directions: acceptance of existing
ethnic fault lines as they currently exist merely "backing a side" or, more theoretically,
attempts to engineer social circumstances that will reduce the salience of ethnic
identification. At present and for the foreseeable future, Northern Ireland will remain
in the hands of the Protestant majority, who are all primarily Loyalists/Unionists. It is
difficult to separate constitutional views of the Republicans and the Loyalists from the
very complex issues that surround the ethnic conflict that exists in Northern Ireland.
However, Loyalists contend that doing the will of the majority can only lead one to
become a unionist rather than a nationalist.
31


In Belfast, the visions of how the world and society should be are entirely
subjective. To the Catholic Republican, the world in which they exist is one of
perceived discrimination, of lost opportunity, and a vision that lacks hope. This is due,
in part, to the way in which they view themselves. On the other hand, the Protestant
Loyalists have an entirely different view of the world, one which arises from a
majority rule, of opportunity, of financial stability.
Social visions are very important in a number of ways. It is obvious that
social policies created by those in the majority have consequences that spread
throughout the society and can reverberate over years and effect generations of
people. Social vision establishes thought as providing a context for action. The
social visions that each group possesses fill the void of knowledge for each individual
as acquired in their individual context.
Social causation in Belfast is conceived very differently, referring to the
mechanics of social causation and the manifested results. As previously mentioned,
Loyalist author Steve Bruce referred to the situation in Northern Ireland as a
"conflict," indicating that conflicts have outcomes, not solutions. A solution can be
achieved only when it is no longer necessary to make a trade-off regardless of
whether or not the solution entailed costs in the past. The ultimate goal of achieving
a solution in society is in fact what justifies the initial sacrifice or any of the
transitional conditions previously considered unacceptable. The ramifications of
conflicting Republican and Loyalist visions extend to politics, economics, religion,
justice, and philosophy in general, thus far preventing any solution from becoming
reality.
If human options within society are not constrained, then the very presence of
such repugnant manifestations such as war, crime, and poverty openly demand an
explanation, and consequently a solution. While those in society that have an
32


unconstrained vision will openly seek the causes of war, poverty, and crime, those
that are constrained in their vision seek the special causes of peace, wealth, or a law-
abiding society. The Republican vision is unconstrained. As such there are not any
intractable reasons for social evils and therefore no reason why there cannot be a
solution to what ails society in general However, in the Loyalist constrained vision,
whatever artifices or strategies restrain or ameliorate social problems have significant
costs attached, some assuming the form of other social ills, making a solution
impossible and only a prudent trade-off' as the end result.
The constrained vision is a tragic vision of the human condition.
The unconstrained vision is a moral vision of human intentions,
which are viewed as ultimately decisive. The unconstrained vision
promotes pursuit of the highest ideals and the best solutions. By
contrast, the constrained vision sees the best as the enemy of the
gooda vain attempt to reach the unattainable being seen as not
only futile but often counterproductive, while the same efforts could
have produced a viable and beneficial trade-off (Sowell 1988: 33).
For Loyalists, the social processes in Belfast are not defined in terms of intent
or attainable goals. Instead they are referred to in terms of systematic characteristics
deemed necessary to contribute to those goals, such things as "property rights," "free
enterprise," or the "constitution." The goals of the Republicans and the goals of the
Loyalists are not just different goals, but they relate to different things. The voices of
the Republicans speak of desired results. The Loyalists speak in terms of process
characteristics conducive to desired results that are accepted as a trade-off^ not a
solution.
The issues at the center of the conflict in Belfast revolve around equality, self-
determination, and justice, but each of these objectives or goals is viewed quite
differently from the eyes of the Republican and the eyes of the Loyalists. The
Loyalists view the issues of freedom, justice, and equality as a "process"
33


characteristic, and the Republicans view the issues in terms of "results". Edmund
Burke in the eighteenth century demonstrated what may be an example of the
problems that exist in Belfast when he stated, "all men have equal rights; but not to
equal things." Milton Friedman further exemplified the focus of a constrained vision
by stating:
A society that puts equality--in the sense of equality of outcome
--ahead of freedom will end up with neither equality nor freedom.
The use of force to achieve equality will destroy freedom, and the
force, introduced for good purposes, will end up in the hands of
people who use it to promote their own interests (Friedman 1980:148).
When the term equality is phrased "equality of opportunity" or "equality
before the law," there are two very different meanings. For the Republican
movement, application of the same criteria to those who possess wealth, education,
opportunity and cultural orientation would only negate the meaning of the word
"equality." Republican interpretation of equal opportunity equates to equalized
probabilities of achievement. This achievement applies to areas of education,
employment opportunities, and in the courts of Northern Ireland. To achieve this it
might become necessary to provide a form of compensatory advantage in the form of
social programs, employment preference, educational programs, and some form of
legal assistance. The delicate relationship between equality and freedom in Northern
Ireland is viewed from two entirely different vantage points. The Republicans see
equality and freedom not as conflict but as political and economic democracy. The
Loyalists, on the other hand, see this as a process with major conflicts between
permitting freedom of individual action and prescribing equality of social results.
In Northern Ireland, the debate is not over the degree of equality, but over
exactly what is to be equalized. Loyalists maintain that discretion should be equally
and individually exercised as much as possible, influenced by the traditions of the
34


union and maintaining the values that have been derived from the widely shared
experience of the collective, rather than the special articulation of the few. The
Republicans, on the other hand, maintain the material conditions of life should be
equalized and supervised by those who possess the intellectual and moral standing to
make the well-being of all of society their concern.
The administration of power in social decision-making has historically been
central to the Republican movement. Much of what goes on in a society is explained
through the exertion of power, whether in the realm of the political, economic, or
military arena, and consequently is of great concern to the Republican movement.
Conflicting visions of the role of power are involved in a wide
spectrum of issues. Power in the sense of direct force and
violence is involved not only in issues of war and peace but also
in issues of crime and punishment. Political power and its
efficacy are also storm centers in the conflict of visions. The
existence, magnitude, and effectiveness of various economic
and social powers are also seen very differently by the two visions
(Sowell 1988:142).
"VICTORY TO THE PROVISIONAL IRA": Perspectives of Republicans (Catholicsl
Unionism requires a one-party state and requires the suppression
of significant opposition. It has not only failed to become engaged
even within the confines of the state in power-sharing, it has also
failed absolutely to come to terms with the simple human proposition
that the man or woman down the road has an equal right too, an
equal right to job opportunities and an equal right to housing
(Adam's 1994: 94).
In Belfast, Irish Republicanism is synonymous with those dispossessed and
seeking the equality taken from them many years ago. The reappropriation of lost
rights comes with a costthose that have deprived others of their rights, have
appropriated those rights for themselves, recognize the only way in which equality
can be achieved is through the loss of the privileged position they have assumed. The
35


world witnessed a similar situation in South Africa, where the Black population
wanted to achieve equality within their own country, where power rested with the
White population. For equality to occur, it became necessary for the White
population to surrender some of its power to the Blacks in order to achieve a balance.
The very same balance of power is in Belfast, where the power structure for the six
counties in the north are in the hands of the Protestant majority. The Protestant
majority represent the antiquated British colonial system that does not divide the
country by color, but rather, by religious affiliation.
In Northern Ireland, with the partitioning of the six counties, the British
government was provided the opportunity to extend its belief system to a minority
population. The establishment of the six counties with boundaries designed to
provide a permanent loyal majority with a Protestant parliament for the Protestant
people, assured the stability of the partitioned counties. With the establishment of a
Protestant state, Loyalism began to identify and project those qualities belonging to
"Protestants" and those that belong to "Catholics."
In Max Weber's "The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism," Weber
found that the leaders of the economic system, the business leaders, the owners of
capital, the high skilled labor, and more technically advanced and commercially
trained personnel in the workforce were overwhelmingly Protestant. Weber
interpreted this to mean that Protestantism was a significant cause in the choice of the
occupations, which could imply that other religions somehow failed to create an
ideational system capable of causing individuals to gravitate to those vocations. In
essence, Protestantism was successful in developing its pursuit of profit into a moral
crusade.
Issues of equity and justice are of vital importance in the Republican
movement. The creation of a pluralistic society that protects individual rights, and
36


provides equal opportunity for success and equality in both voting rights and
representation are issues that are regarded as sacred within the movement.
Republicans do not propose the amalgamation of the two statelets
(sic) into a thirty-two county Free State. What republicans are
talking about is political representatives of Irish people sitting down
without outside interference and deciding what kind of society suits
all our interests. I happen to support, although I am Catholic, the
creation of a secular society, a society which is run in the interests
of all its citizens, a pluralistic society which is structured in such a way
as to reflect differing traditions and which is shaped by the aspirations
of all its citizens. In other words, a state which would unite the whole
people of Ireland, to abolish the memory of past dissension's and to
substitute the common name of Irish person in place of the denominations
of Protestant, Catholic and dissenter... (Adams 1994:103).
What the Republican movement hopes to achieve with the Loyalists is simply
equality. This would include restructuring the decision making to include the interests
of all those in Northern Ireland. The Republican movement wants to establish a
system by which the real problems that exist can be dealt with, within a legislature
that is truly representative of the people, reflective of its needs, and one that will
guarantee individual liberty. In its current form, Catholics do not have equality within
the six counties in the north. The very nature and history of the six counties is ample
evidence of that. Equality with Great Britain is also impossible at this time, due in
part (regardless of political differences) to the second class stratification experienced
by the Catholic population of Ireland. It is maintained within the movement that the
only way in which equality can be achieved is through the control of its own destiny.
Gerry Adams, President of the Sinn Fein organization, urges Protestants to be
encouraged and recognize the commonality that exists within the population of
Northern Ireland. They should be encouraged to look at the proud traditions of
Protestant participation in the democratic pursuit of an Irish people in search of self-
government. Adams urges all those of Northern Ireland, including the Protestants, to
37


hear the voices of those leaders that are desperately searching for the voice of reason
and sanity. Gerry Adams states that what Ireland needs the most at this juncture is a
"De Klerk" to bring them and us into the next century. It is important to note that in
every Westernized country, the issue of self-determination has been a significant issue
at one time. In Northern Ireland, the very same issue of self-determination remains of
pivotal importance and the Republican movement maintains that it is fundamental that
all people have the right to national self-determination.
The duality of interests that exist within government structures is pointed out
in Gerry Adams' book Free Ireland (1994Y Adams points out that the struggle for
independence is often supported within the parliamentary walls of London for other
countries. Adams cites the recent anti-apartheid movement in South Africa in which
John Hume publicly supported the revolutionary movement of the ANC in its armed
struggle for independence, equality, and self-determination. Support for such
movement within the borders of Northern Ireland has been dismissed consistently as
nothing more than terrorism, and yet the IRA and the ANC seek the very same end,
equality, equal representation, and opportunity. Throughout the six counties in
Northern Ireland, the appearance of solidarity is evident in the slogans and murals that
are painted on the houses in the ghetto areas of Northern Ireland.
Gerry Adams indicates that what is needed in Northern Ireland is a
differentiation between society and the religious establishment. Adams contends that
there is a place for the churches in society, that religion is important, but it should not
be the issue that decides the future of Ireland. It should be the people, a diverse
group of people with self-determination, that decides the future. Adams states:
Our Irishness can only be inclusive if it takes in our diversity
in all matters, and if we have a society of our own. To ignore
these lessons of history is to repeat the mistakes of the past.
What is needed in Ireland, especially in the twenty-six counties,
38


is the development of an anti-imperialism movement. Such a
movement cannot be built around the slogan of socialism until
socialism comes onto the historical agenda, until a distinctly Irish
form of socialism is developed to meet our needs and conditions
and until the majority class in Ireland, the working class, actually
understands that this is in their interests and what they want. If
such a mass anti-imperialist movement, with an appeal to all major
sections of Irish society, could be developedand this is the urgent
task of all socialists, Nationalists and Republicansit would fuse
together all those whose interests are adversely affected by imperialism,
and would show people the connection between their localized
and special grievances and the imperialistic domination of Irish society
(Adams 1994:116).
According to the Republicans, the British government and army do not have
the right to be in Ireland. However, the current political, economic and military status
remain in British hands. The British government still retains full authority over not
only the affairs of the people in Northern Ireland but also the affairs in the Republic of
Ireland. Historically, the British have been in Ireland for centuries and in the eyes of
the Republican movement their presence have been coercive, violent, and sectarian in
nature. The British presence in Northern Ireland systematically established
organizations that have initiated and perpetuated acts of violence in an attempt to
remain in a position of privilege, establishing partition, fear, distrust, poverty, and
fighting among the various factions in Ireland. The presence of the British in Ireland
has brought with it many deaths of the Irish people, as well as those of British soldiers
and civilians.
Economically, the British presence in Northern Ireland has created de-
industrialization, conditions of financial dependency, and an enormous decline in the
overall employment, creating unemployment rates that have reached eight to ninety
percent in some areas of Northern Ireland. Foreign ownership in Northern Ireland
has reached levels of forty percent; however, the gross earning potential is lower than
the rest of those employed in the United Kingdom.
39


The loss of twenty-nine percent of the population and forty
percent of the taxable capacity of the country, as well as the
main industrial area and largest city, Belfast~a port through
which passed one third of the national trade before partition-
meant that any attempt to build a viable economy would be
doomed to failure. The loss of the industrial area around
Belfast was particularly important. Metal goods has to be
imported from Britain and paid for in goods Britain would
accept. These were agricultural, mainly cattle. So dependent
did the twenty-six counties become on this trade that, in the
1950's, the population was decreased to its lowest numbers
while the state carried the highest number of cattle in its
history. Indeed, since the Free State was established, half
of its population has had to emigrate (Adams 1994:77).
The Republicans maintain that British control directly involves the
maintenance of structural discrimination. Discrimination in Northern Ireland in recent
history has always been a way of life, and the Catholic who was fortunate enough to
obtain work suffered discrimination in the type of employment available. The
Loyalists contend that discrimination does not exist, or that it has been eliminated in
the work place. Although discrimination was declared illegal in 1976, there has yet to
be taken any meaningful measures to reverse the structural inequality. One example
of the inequality is the Shorts Aircraft plant in the Belfast area. In this plant there is
less than a five percent Catholic workforce, despite assurance from the British that
equality in employment would exist as well as equal opportunity in employment.
"Britain's economic interests in Ireland and their consequences represent,
however, only one thread on the loom of colonial control and intervention" (Adams
1994:81). On an economic basis, Ireland is a marketplace as well as an industrial
center that is dominated by the British. On the political front, many contend that if
the British were to leave Ireland this would be represent the disassembling of the very
nature of the British state. It would be the end of colonialization as the British and
Irish know it. The prospect that appears to be the most threatening to British rule is
40


national self-determination. A country that would have the ability to define and
implement policy independent of Great Britain, and participating in governmental
functions that were in the interests of the Irish population as a whole, would be the
end of colonial and neo-colonial control.
According to Sinn Fein and the Republican movement, self-determination
would mean the Irish would be in control of their own destiny, establishing foreign
policy in their own interests, aligning with other countries and with those people that
remain struggling for the right to self-determination and equality. However, Sinn Fein
alleges the traditional claim to the territory of Ireland maintained by the British, is
strongly supported by the United States and the European community as well. The
primary concern of the other countries is the maintenance of the status quo and the
pursuit of "stability." Because of this world concern the British have been very
resourceful in the application of oppression to maintain the status quo.
Those in Ireland who claim to seek permanent peace, justice,
democracy equality of opportunity, and stability cannot deny
that the abiding and universally accepted principle of national self-
determination, in which is enshrined the principle of democracy,
is the surest means through which to achieve and maintain their
social and political aims. Self-determination is accepted to mean
a nation's right to exercise the political freedom to determine its own
development without external influence and without partial or total
disruption of national unity or territorial integrity (Adams 1994:171).
British policy towards Ireland has been the refusal to allow the Irish people
the right to exercise self-determination. The IRA and Sinn Fein have collectively
identified this as the root of the conflict in Northern Ireland. Additionally, the refusal
to allow self-determination in conjunction with the measures that they have taken to
enforce this policy is the direct cause of the conflict-oriented relationship that exists
between the two countries.
41


The current culture that is slowly and methodically being forced into Irish
society is nothing short of a dependency culture. The dependency culture is
significant in the overall conditioning of the population to accept poor housing, high
unemployment, forced emigration, living conditions that are below European
standards, and the manifestations of hopelessness through violence and bigotry.
According to Gerry Adams, "the struggle against cultural colonialism must be a key
part of the reconquest of Ireland, of the making of a new Irish humanity'^Adams
1994). Adams maintains what is crucial to cultural restoration is the restoration of
the Irish language. Many of the people involved in the struggle believe that the
reclaiming of the Irish language is of primary concern. They, along with others, feel
that the language issue is central and cannot be left out of negotiations. Indeed, many
refuse to entertain negotiations not inclusive of reclamation of the Irish language.
The foundation of Sinn Fein's philosophy and that of the IRA is contained in
the 1916 proclamation that established ownership of Ireland by the people of Ireland.
This includes all the people of Ireland, not just the twenty-six counties in the south.
What is essential in this struggle is this ideology: an economic, social and political
democracy that does not have at its head a religious figure, but a secular government
that separates church and state and places them in their proper realms The
contention is that it is imperative that a new constitution be drawn up that recognizes
human rights based on international conventions. Sinn Fein is a Republican political
party, which represents only the Catholic population and are engaged in the unarmed
struggle for Irish national self-determination. Sinn Fein is firmly committed to the
reunification of the entire country of Ireland and will continue to be so until victory is
won or there are no longer members to engage in the struggle. They remain firm in
their commitment to end the partition of Ireland and philosophically support the
armed struggle to reunify this war tom country.
42


The armed struggle in Ireland requires what Gerry Adams calls "reflex
physical force politics." In other words, regardless of the political dimensions, an
armed struggle in itself creates a very significant political dimension requiring a strong
community based political relationship. The emphasis is on the community, because
in order to be successful in such a campaign, the community must not only be strongly
supportive, but also it must be a participant at some level. Once there has been
developed a political vision and a setting of goals toward that vision, then
understanding the opponent's philosophy, politics and tactics becomes more
important. It is at that point that an armed struggle is in itself becomes nothing more
than a tactic. The use of an armed struggle in a conflict situation is a tactic of
enormous importance, because it provides a cutting edge. Although there are many
people that are in disagreement with the tactics employed by members of the Irish
Republican Army, in the same breath there is acknowledgment of the vital importance
they play in the political equation. There appears to be consensus that the armed
struggle in and of itself is insufficient to produce the desired results. However,
coupled with a non-armed negotiating effort in the political arena, a balance seems to
occur, one that can and has brought about changes in the conflict.
Despite Protestant fears that it is lending clandestine support, the British
government is attempting to destroy the Republican movement. It has censored the
Sinn Fein organization and excluded the organization from participating in the peace
negotiations because of its support of the armed struggle in Northern Ireland. Now,
in the spring of 1996, the peace talks have broken down and the IRA has resumed its
bombing campaign in an effort to bring the British back to the negotiating table for
genuine and sincere negotiations. In the past the British have failed to negotiate in
good faith. This has resulted in the loss of many lives and much time to solve a
conflict that has persisted for twenty seven years. The Sinn Fein organization is often
43


misrepresented and misquoted in its position regarding the armed struggle in Northern
Ireland. In a statement prepared for public record, the President of the Sinn Fein
organization prepared a statement outlining their position on the armed struggle.
Sinn Fein's position on the armed struggle is quite clear. We
believe that the Irish people have the right to use armed struggle
in the context of seeking Irish independence and in the conditions
of British occupation in the six counties. Whether Irish people
wish to exercise that right is a matter for them. That is our opinion.
It is also a matter of political reality and a fact of life in the six counties.
It will be so, unfortunately, until the conditions which create it are
changed. Sinn Fein wishes to change these conditions. We want
total demilitarization of the situation and an end to armed struggle
of all kinds in our country.
Sinn Fein does not advocate violence. We understand why the
conflict continues and why there is armed resistance by the IRA
to British rule in our country. The IRA has clearly stated on a
number of occasions that for republicans armed struggle is a
method of political struggle adopted reluctantly as a last resort in
the absence of any viable alternative.
The onus is on those who claim that there is an alternative to the
IRA's armed struggle to prove that this is the case. Sinn Fein is
committed to dealing with the central issues, to challenging the
causes of conflict in Ireland and by so doing to create the conditions
in which real and lasting peace can be established (Adams 1994:149).
44


CHAPTER 5
BALLYMURPHY: A COMMUNITY OF RESISTANCE
In West Belfast, just north of the city cemetery is a tightly-knit community
that houses nearly 12,000 people. This unified neighborhood, whose reputation is
common knowledge in all of Ireland, is called Ballymurphy. Guaranteed to evoke
strong and emotional reactions, this community extends over eight housing estates in
one square mile of West Belfast. Upon arrival in Belfast, Ciaran de Baroid, the
author of the book Ballymurphy and the Trish War, curiously asked a Citybus
inspector where a bus could be found that could take him to Ballymurphy. The
inspector responded "they don't take any buses to Ballymurphy, they bum all the
buses in Ballymurphy." That was in 1972.
The Ballymurphy community became famous during Easter week of 1970.
The Protestants had planned a parade through the Catholic neighborhood against the
wishes and pleas of the residents. Within minutes the bands had attracted large
numbers of young people from Ballymurphy. The band had provoked a response
from the crowd, a response that would lead to the siege of Ballymurphy. Within
hours the entire area was overrun with military personnel and police in an effort to
stop the rioting that had ensued.
The story of Ballymurphy actually began in the spring of 1947 after WW n.
Large subsidies were made available to help the local authorities provide houses
quickly for those that had been bombed out of their houses during the war. The
Ballymurphy estate was an example of "early post-war planning" as houses were
constructed by pouring a honeycombed mixture of cement and
45


aggregate into shutters and skimming the finished result with grout.
The lack of a cavity in the quickly-constructed shells would later
result in acute problems of cold, dampness and ill-health in Ballymuiphy.
Another innovation, brought about by a dearth of skilled plasterers,
was the introduction of a new type of internal partition that was easy,
cheap and quick to erect but did little for the solidity of the houses
(De Baroid 1989: 9).
Not many of the residents of Ballymuiphy are able to boast of owning a
business; in fact over half of the population do not work at all Some have never had
a job, have never seen a paycheck, only a demeaning state issued welfare check. This
community soon became the focus of myths about its residents, such as the keeping of
coal in the bathtub, or the use of window and door frames for firewood. The myths
also highlighted a lack of hygienic practices, innuendoes of partner swapping, all of
which were oriented around the Catholic populations inability to work, to keep clean,
or to provide anything of any value to society.
Due to the discriminatory nature of the Protestant majority, those of Catholic
descent were housed in areas such as Ballymuiphy (see map pg.46), which
consequently became home to the Nationalists (Republicans). By the late 1950's, this
small community had become a "transit location," one in which many families came
and went, often in the middle of the night. Local leaders allege that nearly twelve
thousand families moved in and out of the nearly seven hundred houses in
approximately fourteen years. In an exhaustive study of this community, completed in
1973 it was pointed out that:
In time, despite the high rents, this bad reputation undermined
the attempts of the more responsible tenants to bring about
improvements. Whether they wanted jobs, public services or
credit, they found it was a heavy liability to have a Ballymuiphy
address. So, many of those who could have contributed to its
improvement moved elsewhere, while others avoided it altogether
and sought homes on estates that had a better reputation. Whether
by accident or by design, the estate had by the late 1950's become
a sort of clearing house for Catholic Belfast. The best potential
46


tenants were creamed off by the Northern Ireland Housing Trust,
the worst were offered houses in BaUymuiphy, and those in between
went to other corporation estates (Spencer 1973: 11).
INNERBELFAST
Reside
mm
City boundary
'Peace line'
al areas
tAote than
10% Catholic
More than
10% Protestant
miles
/,
%
kilometers
47


The year 1969, with the eruption into violence of the civil rights movement
and the onslaught of Loyalist attacks on the Catholic population, would be forever
remembered in Ballymurphy. Late 1969 would be remembered as the year when the
IRA moved into the area and began establishing very deep roots in this community. It
would also be remembered by those in the Republican movement as the time when
"all hell" broke loose in Ballymurphy. It had been reported that the Protestants were
going to conduct a march through.BaUymurphy as a display of force and intimidation.
Within minutes after the parade had begun, hundreds of people had flocked into the
streets. This battle hardened crowd had weathered the Easter riots of 1969 and were
prepared to put a stop to this march through their neighborhood (deBaroid 1989).
After residents destroyed a RUC barracks, the British sent hundreds of troops into
Ballymurphy.
- What was called the "Battle of Ballymurphy" lasted for seven months, without
respite. This small community had taken it upon themselves to redefine the terms on
which they were to be treated. They had collectively decided that fighting the British
was their reason for being in Ballymurphy as well as the reason for their existence.
Although there were countless casualties during this bloody confrontation, the
members of this community remember this time as a period of great dignity and pride.
This battle also represented one of the most extraordinary confrontations between a
civilian population and an elite, well-trained, well armed modem army.
Every man, woman and child was involved. They didnt fire a
shot, but for months, the British army had the hell beaten out
of them The women were humiliating and demoralizing them
The kids were hammering them You had the whole community
organized right down into street committees, so that you had a
sort of spider's web of regular coordination (Adams 1986:51).
48


One of the most impressive aspects of this battle was the level of community
organization that was developed in a very brief time. Within just a few short weeks,
Ballymuiphy had become one solid unit of operation, a unit that had a position and
duty for each member of the community, right down to the children. Those that were
either too old or incapacitated in some way provided logistical support in the form of
escape routes, warning systems, and ammunition. Ballymurphy became tremendously
innovative in the approach to the conflict, from tossing bottles filled with gasoline and
rocks to the development of blast bombs and nail bombs. The residents booby
trapped their gardens, stretched wire between telegraph poles, and developed
tripwires. Although with the passage of time some of the memories of this period
became blurred or distorted, the experience in 1969 has been forever ingrained in the
psyche of the residents of that small community of resistance.
Although many years have since passed, this community had methodically
developed an intricate network of social, medical, and resource support systems that
still remain the picture of solidarity and organization in the city of Belfast. The
residents of Ballymurphy allege there are nothing less than sixty four different
community organizations that act as support within the community. Ballymurphy,
which is somewhat autonomous within the city of Belfast, developed associations
directly involved with issues of housing, medical, the handicapped, employment,
daycare, and banking. This community decided upon the goal of virtual self-
sufficiency within the city of Belfast. The residents of Ballymurphy took it upon
themselves to supersede the authority of the local officials who have either ignored
requests for action or do not feel their requests warranted any attention and thus
established a system by which would resolve community issues without the help of the
local authorities.
49


Father Des Wilson, a Catholic priest and Ballymuiphy community activist;
provided insight into the conflict in this and other communities in West Belfast when
he stated, "The IRA simply rose as any revolutionary body would arise after
intolerable living conditions." Wilson elaborated on the living conditions during his
lifetime and indicated living conditions often required hiding under stairs from the
"death squads that frequented Catholic neighborhoods. During the course of his
adolescence and adulthood, Wilson referred to the "Catholic Problem in
BaUymurphy" that arose with greater frequency in the late sixties that could only be
resolved by members of the police. According to my informant, Fr. Wilson, the
"Catholic Problem" occurred as a result of massive migration of Catholics from the
south seeking employment in the north. In 1969, with the migration of Catholics to
the north an imbalance in the voting pattern occurred, creating problems for the pro-
unionist politicians (Loyalists). In an effort to maintain a majority, the politicians
manipulated the voting districts to insure a Loyalist victory. This was partially
accomplished through inflammatory speeches aimed at the Protestant majority in an
effort to create an atmosphere of fear and hatred of the Catholic population. The
problem would persist until the normal voting patterns had been returned to their
normal pro-unionist (Loyalist) position, then normal integration patterns would be
permitted until an imbalance occurred at some later date.
The Northern Ireland government became the mechanics of the political,
social, and religious fervor in the late sixties, with religious leaders such as Ian
Paisley, a Presbyterian Minister in Belfast intensifying the atmosphere of conflict with
pro-unionist rhetoric directed at the Catholic population. Finally, the massive attack
on the Catholic population by the British forces and police, preceded by a Loyalist
provocative march through Ballymuiphy in 1969 provided the opportunity for a
military solution by a civilian population. The IRA emerged in Ballymuiphy out of
50


the fortified request of those driven out of their homes, the IRA response (according
to Des Wilson) to the government intervention was "What the fuck are you doing?"
According to Father Des Wilson, the reason for the re-emergence of this
paramilitary entity was a direct response to the demand of the people with the
Catholics of Ballymurphy and the rest of West Belfast demanding some protection
from forces insurmountable and unbeatable. Des Wilson contends that peaceful non-
military initiatives no longer exist, that any resolution will only be achieved through
military perseverance by the IRA to demand an end to the repression. But that is not
likely to occur, he admits, because the British government's position is strongly
supported by the United States.
In Northern Ireland, the conflict or "terror" as defined by the British cannot be
explained other than as a tactic utilized by the IRA to accomplish its goal. The
"troubles" are part and parcel of what can only be defined as an irregular war, a war
recognized and legitimated by only one ride, the IRA and the Catholic nationalist
population. The IRA represent a receptacle of those idealists that still desire to wage
the war to free the North of Ireland and join once again the thirty two counties.
These defenders of the nationalist's ideals in this conflict are not radicals or
disgruntled patriots. They believe that their actions are justified and will benefit all of
Ireland once it is reunited.
The IRA
According to the Republican movement, the root cause of the political evil in
Northern Ireland has always been the British occupation and because of that presence
it is acknowledged that the only way in which to deal with the imperialism of the
Britirii occupation force is through direct physical force. At the ideological core of
this conflict is the IRA's assumption that any physical force exerted in the name of the
Republic of Ireland, a united Ireland, will solidify the hearts of the Irish and guarantee
51


a democratic future. The objective of the IRA has always been to reunify the country,
to re-establish a common name of "Irishmen" and to remove the denomination stigma
created by the British government.
In 1970, the strategy of the IRA was to organize and arm a secret army.
Through retaliation in the form of gradually increasing provocation, the British forces
would systematically alienate the nationalist's population, thus permitting wartime
engagement with British security forces. The IRA successfully established a
substantial constituency in Northern Ireland and abroad, which would provide
physical and monetary assistance in the fight against the British security forces. They
soon developed training procedures and intelligence gathering techniques, and became
a skilled opponent in the field of guerrilla warfare. The British seemed at times
mystified at the success rate of this clandestine group of revolutionaries who
continually forced the them into committing classic strategic errors. One example of
the success of the IRA occurred in July 1972, when the British sent heavily armed
troops into "IRA no-go zones." When that encounter ended, ninety five British were
dead.
Tactical decisions made by the IRA often focus on the possible and immediate
means of escalating conflict. For the IRA, vulnerability is an essential element in its
war effort against the British; to find an area that is least likely to be guarded, that
may be understaffed, and/or may have a breach in security. This is where the IRA is
most likely to strike and strike effectively. The Irish Republican Army is a persistent
foe to the British and have become very cautious and extremely skilled. Although
IRA volunteers have become very adept in the performance of their duties, the British
learned to respond with tactics that at times stills the movement of the IRA
Nonetheless, the IRA has become very sophisticated in its approach to conflict with
the British. The tactical object of the IRA is: "(1) persist until the will wins over the
52


entrenched assets of the Crown, and (2) escalate, escalate until the Crown will no
longer pay the cost" (Bell 1993: 28).
The campaign strategy between 1969-1971 was to lure the British forces into
direct confrontation with the IRA. Therefore, as an IRA target, the British army
would be in constant risk, regardless of whether an individual was on duty or off duty,
in a uniform., a man or a woman it would not make any difference. If one was a part
of the British military apparatus, one became a legitimate target for the IRA. For this
very reason, the British have made an effort to "criminalize" the IRA's campaign in an
effort to shift the burden of responsibility onto the local constabulary and away from
the Crown. When this change was completed there would no longer be an IRA war,
because it would have been reduced to a police matter to be taken up locally. This
reduction of British presence and the burdening of the responsibility upon others
grants the British the opportunity not to address the issues that persist from 1969
until the present, and reduces what was termed a war to mere tribal murder.
Some of the most crucial targets for the IRA, as with any revolutionary force,
are the informers, who represent the betrayal of a dream as well as the betrayal of the
purity of the vision. An informer undermines all activity of the organization, and casts
a measure of doubt on the faithful to the cause. Thus IRA informers become prime
legitimate targets, because they instill a fear at the very heart of the organization.
There is a constant question of "who will be the Judas amongst us?" Those who are
found guilty of informing the British, regardless of how great or how little, will suffer
the range of consequences from beatings to tarring and feathering, to being shot in the
knee caps. Betrayal from the outside, Le. those individuals considered spies, criminals
selling information, informers without a conscience and political opponents are all
targets without set rules for punishment. The IRA does not have any prisons, nor a
judicial system by which to process these individuals. They do not have judges that
53


would or could be in a position to grant leniency, therefore they must act directly and
violently.
Historically, targets of the IRA have been British personnel, sympathizers, and
buildings, howeverthe avowed target for the IRA is the Northern Ireland economy.
This makes virtually any object vulnerable to an IRA bombing attack from houses and
stores, to hotels, bridges and parking structures. The IRA have stockpiled an
enormously diabolical amount of devices, from crude and simple to very complicated
detonating devices, all capable of being planted and detonated weeks or months later
by a device previously placed in a shop or buried in someone's garden. Since 1969,
the British government has recorded over 3,000 deaths, shooting incidents in excess
of 31,000, and bombing incidents exceeding 15,000 (Northern Ireland Office 1990).
Prison
Imprisonment for IRA members and followers engaged in the conflict with the
British became commonplace in Belfast and the Ballymurphy neighborhood in the
years following 1969. It is important to understand the impact of prison from the
perspective of a Ballymurphy resident, because it not only separated men and women
from their families, but helped to solidify the community. Imprisonment in Northern
Ireland often meant being held pending charges for up to two years before being tried
for the alleged crime. Customarily, the defendant would be found guilty of the charges
and have to spend an additional ten to twenty years in prison before being released
back into society. For the residents of Ballymurphy, where a significant number of
families have lost a member of the immediate family to the war effort or have a father
or son or wife in prison because of activity against the British government or the
government of Northern Ireland, life is unpredictable. A resident of Ballymurphy who
has a family member in prison is often harassed by the RUC and British security
54


forces. Their homes are often searched or placed under surveillance on a routine
basis.
For those Ballymurphy families separated by prison, the dynamics of
reunification after prison are an awkward and often devastating process. The prison
separation created an extra dimension that Fr. Des Wilson has termed "enforced
opposites," Le., husbands and wives caught up in a prison situation, working on their
own. People become forgotten in the midst of prison, with the husband forced to
maintain a life away from the family, the wife forced to find work in whatever form to
provide adequate provisions for the family. In Belfast, a prison organization that
provides assistance to prisoners both during and after release, Prison Fellowship,
explained that the majority of the imnates who were prosecuted for their paramilitary
activities came from families that were very dysfunctional in nature. Dysfunctional
behavior of children on an individual level was described as disruptive in the
classroom, insistent on being in control, often being expelled for behavioral problems
as the classic "stereotypical individual" that would and usually does get involved in
gang activity, eventually leading to paramilitary activity by the age of thirteen or
fourteen.
I conducted an interview with a communications officer with Sinn Fein, the
legal arm of the IRA, and the stereotype of the preadolescent behavior appeared to be
accurate in his case. He reported that his thirteenth year as the year in which he
dropped from school and began getting involved with the paramilitary units in West
Belfast. During the course of the interview, he disclosed that by the time he had
reached the age of seventeen he was heavily involved. Although cautiously candid,
this officer spoke of his prison experience of seventeen years in Long Kesh prison:
It was a tough regime. You have to keep in mind that people
thought we were criminals. Even today, the British government
55


refused to recognize that there are any political prisoners. They
are saying that they are all criminals. Yet, the facilities, the hunger
strikers embarked on a course of action, they embarked on a
hunger strike to improve conditions in the prison, basically to be
recognized as political prisoners. In essence what they went on
a hunger strike for exists today. They had been through a long
period where by there was a lot of protests, a lot of action that
had taken place. So important in all these protests over the years
for whatever, political status or just improvements in conditions
and then as the years progressed we saw the need for an
educational system to be established in the jail The prison
authorities, however, weren't very concerned about your
welfare and your well being. They basically wanted us locked
up. The way they looked at us was like dangerous people.
We had committed, in their terminology, "heinous crimes," and
needed to be locked up, put off the streeets.They embarked us
on a conveyer belt system which was designed to block the courts.
It didn't matter if you were innocent, didn't matter how many
witnesses you had to back your story, your were guilty! Then you
were beaten and beaten, deprived of food and water, and then
brought before a judge. He sentenced you for whatever. No
juryyou never got a jury, it was just the judge, because the British
government refused to recognize that there were political prisoners.
So there is always going to be clashes with them, all the time. Everytime
we achieved something, it was through a real hard struggle, which in
the case of some of the hunger strikers costs ten lives. But the essence
of what they died for exists today. When I went to prison you were
allowed only one parcel of fruit a month one present a month, one letter
a month, so it was really a harsh place to live. But now, with all the
protests you can have as many letters as you want, your not even
locked up, your cell door is openall that came through
prison struggle.
Because I was given a life sentence, I wasn't aware of when I
was going to be released. Basically what happens, when you
are given a life sentence you have to do ten years regardless-unless
you are a bloody soldier. But if you are Republican, you are
going to do ten years. What happens when your ten years is done,
you come up in front of what is called the life sentence
review board, that consists of a governor, a welfare officer, a
doctor, a judge, and whoever else they feel should review your
case in your absence. They recommend one of two things, either
release or continued imprisonment. So when I got my ten years,
they said they would review my case in another four years. When
56


I had fourteen years I was reviewed again in my absence, you don't
go in there, you are invited to write an application to them. Basically
why you think you should be released. Being a republican meant
that your case would always be reviewed at another time. They don't
have to give you a reason. Eventually after my sixteenth year they
gave me a reason...it was something silly but something to do with
me still being a threat to society. Without actually saying it to you,
they considered me a threat to society. Finally the next year they
recommended my release. Normally with life sentence prisoners,
before you are let out they have workshops that you attend for
about three or four months so you can get accustomed to society,
but in my case, because of my injuries they just released me, just
gave me a bag and sent me homebut I didn't really have a home
(Communications officer Sinn Fein: 1995).
On a wall in Belfast, just north of the Falls Road, adjacent to an empty field,
where a prospering bakery once stood before a bomb leveled it, are written five
demands made for those in prison:
1. The right to wear their own clothes.
2. The right not to do prison work.
3. Free association with fellow prisoners.
4. Full 50% remission of their sentences.
5. Normal visits, parcels, education and recreational facilities.
The message and demands reveal another community of resistance. Although
many of the prisoners of Long Kesh and Armagh prisons were at one time residents
of Ballymurphy and surrounding nationalists neighborhoods, now they are members
of another community, prison. During the early days of the conflict, in an attempt to
curtail the amount of terrorist activity, the "conveyer-belt system" became the
British's counter-insurgency technique of choice. The H-blocks of Long Kesh Prison
began to fill to capacity, creating living conditions unacceptable to the general
population. In response to overcrowding and lengthy prison sentences, the prisoners
requested increased recreational time and access to educational facilities, but their
57


requests fell upon deaf ears and administrators hostile to any suggestion of humane
treatment. On the outside, debate began concerning strategy to circumvent the role
of the "conveyer-belt system" because of its effectiveness in removing people from the
streets and placing them in prison, creating adverse and unhealthy living conditions on
the growing prison population. Inside the prison walls, the inmates were faced with
jailers who would with regularity kick over their food bowls so they were not able to
eat and then demand they clean the cell of the mess which had been created.
Eventually prisoners refused to clean the food from the cells and protested by
smearing excrement on the walls. In retaliation, the jailers refused clothing to those
prisoners choosing to participate in such an unacceptable form of protest, forcing the
men to remain naked, with only a blanket, confined to their celL This was the
beginning to what was to become an internationally observed protest.
Bobby Sands and the Prison Hunger Strikes
The prison situation became worse in both the Long kesh and Armagh
prisons. It was decided amongst the prisoners that unless the five demands were met
by the British authorities a hunger strike would begin. A hunger strike was declared
on October 27, 1980 and lasted until December 18th, which ended only after serious
negotiations between London, Belfast and Dublin, producing the necessary results to
end the dangerous hunger strike. However, the settlement was short lived as the
agreement reached by the involved parties was never implemented by the authorities.
The reason why negotiation and implementation of the agreement occurred, perhaps,
can best be understood from situations that occurred during the summer and autumn
months prior to the hunger strike. During that period and in response to the defiance
being demonstrated by the prisoners, the retaliation by the predominantly Loyalist
officials, combined with an IRA campaign to shoot prison officials when they were
off-duty, created an appalling atmosphere that eventually escalated to dangerous
58


levels both in and out of the prisons. Prior to the hunger strike, the Northern Ireland
Office announced that instead of prison uniforms the inmates would be permitted to
wear civilian clothes. However, this was not meant to mean actual civilian clothes,
but "prison issue civilian clothes." One of the demands of the hunger strikers was to
be able to wear "their own civilian clothes," not prison issue clothing. Thus began a
hunger strike that lasted a month and a half
Although the hunger strike had ended in December, the issues were not
resolved. It was hoped that the concession of receiving clothing from the prisoners
families would put an end to the protests. However, when they received the "prison
issue civilian clothing" it became apparent that, although the strike had ended, there
was more to come. It was at this point that Bobby Sands entered the picture. Bom
in 1954, a Catholic, he joined the IRA at the age of eighteen. Bobby Sands
symbolized defiance and courage, traits the residents of Ballymurphy and other
Catholic neighborhoods could rally behind. He was first convicted and sentenced to
three years in prison shortly after becoming active in the Republican movement. After
being released from prison in 1976, he once again became active in the ongoing
maneuvers of the IRA. In October of 1976, he was returned to prison for his
participation in the fire bombing of a furniture company.
The weekend of January 23, 1981, the prisoners were informed that twenty
men would wash, shave, and have their hair cut for which they would receive their
"own" clothes for the weekend. With the clothes having arrived earlier in the day,
Sands informed the governor that the prisoners wished to end the protest and wanted
to cleanse themselves and wear their own clothes. However, after being informed
that once they had cleaned themselves up, shaved and were brought into "strict
conformity" to existing prison regulations regarding appearance they would receive
their own clothes, to be distributed after four in the afternoon, this was not to be.
59


Despite repeated requests, the prisoners were refused the clothes their relatives had
brought them. This prompted Bobby Sands to issue the following statement:
For our part we must realize that another hunger strike, should
it collapse, would present the Movement with disastrous
consequences. Therefore a second hunger strike cannot and will
not end in defeat because as I have said before, when the balance
of conformity outweighs that of resistance, then criminalization is
indeed winning...So, comrades,once again under the duress of British
barbarity and in the ugly face of further British intransigence we are
forced to embark upon a hunger strike in the coming weeks. The
announcement of this should be made public, along with the date,
Friday, 30 January. The number of hunger strikers shall be small,
myself and three others, amongst them of course a representative of
the I.R.S.P....
I accept now that men will sacrifice their lives on this hunger strike.
But you must all cast aside everything for total unity within these
blocks-unity and steadfastness. You should, when a comrade dies,
remain steadfast. Because, comrades, at the end of the day, men
will die and the responsibility of enduring this protest for once and
for all will not lie dead comrades, but with you. Because only your
unflinching resistance and steadfastness will force an end to this
protest.
Therefore, stand together and give your fullest support to the officer
in charge of these blocks. And in one way or another, comrades,
victory will be ours, because we have the will to win. And we will win.
(Bobby Sands: 1981)
In a symbolic gesture, the hunger strikers represented each of the six counties
in Northern Ireland, each being outstanding figures within the Republican movement
and having been carefully screened to insure that no oscillation would occur between
determination and despair. The IRA itself played a significant role in this hunger
strike, gathering all available data on hunger striking from sources around the world
to determine how best to utilize this experience and to evaluate the survival rate of
hunger strikers during the strike. This particular strike was a well planned, carefully
thought out protest, with prisoners joining in intervals to insure maximum
60


effectiveness., In all the hunger strike lasted 217 days, ending on October 3, 1981.
Although dying as a result of the hunger strike, Bobby Sands made a very powerful
impression on the country. Bobby Sands came to symbolize the plight of all Catholics
in Northern Ireland through the international media attention he received during the
course of the hunger strike.
During the course of the hunger strike, Sinn Fein cast Bobby Sands for the
vacant member of parliament seat in Fermanagh after the death of Frank McGuire.
Being the only candidate running for the position, he won the seat in an April 9, 1981
election. Although he achieved political status, he ironically died a member of the
British parliament. Sands continued the hunger strike in spite of numerous appeals
from the international community including members of parliament, human rights
organizations, and the Pope's private secretary. Bobby Sands died on May 5, 1981.
It was estimated that there were in excess of one hundred thousand people in
attendance at his funeral. Throughout Belfast and the North of Ireland, both during
and after the hunger strike death of Bobby Sands, the murals on the walls told stories
of the incident, of the dream, and of the death of the IRA man Bobby Sands. One
such wall depicts a portrait of Bobby Sands rising above his casket, with three IRA
men firing a volley over the casket, and off to the side the words "I refuse to change
to suit the people who oppress, torture, and imprison me, who wish to dehumanize
me...I have the spirit of freedom which cannot be quenched by even the most
horrendous treatment, of course I can be murdered, but I remain what I amA
Political Prisoner of War" (Sluka 1992:200). In another mural depiction of the plight
of the hunger strikers, a wall in Belfast portrays a man (presumably Sands) lying in a
bed clutching a rosary. In the background is the depiction of the "H" block, symbolic
of the H-blocks at the Long Kesh prison and a symbolic representation of the Virgin
61


Mary with her hands outstretched. Above the mural are the words "Blessed are those
who hunger for justice" (Sluka 1992: 201).
By December of 1981, seven months after the death of Bobby Sands, the
majority of the demands of the prisoners had been met, which included wearing of
their own clothes, 50% remission of their sentences, they were allowed to form
"associations" within the prison that would allow each inmate the opportunity of
conversing and interacting with other prisoners on a daily basis. They were also
awarded the opportunity of leaving their cells for up to a period of two hours each
night and an hour's exercise each day. For the hunger strikers, their fight for humane
treatment while incarcerated paid off Ten hunger strikers perished before the British
government would concede to any of the "right" demanded by the prisoners. Bobby
Sands and the other hunger strikers not only demonstrated defiance in the face of
overwhelming odds but the same courage the residents of Ballymurphy had exhibited
during the battle of Ballymuiphy.
The Ballymuiphy community, Long Kesh and Armagh prisons represent
communities of resistance, that have been engulfed in a battle with the British
government and the majority Protestant Loyalist population over issues of housing,
employment, education, and fair treatment. Views of this conflict are as varied as the
solutions, but the struggle and resolve demonstrated by the Catholics must be
acknowledged. The residents of Ballymuiphy represent a unified community, a
community that has not only endured ferocious armed confrontation, but also
isolation in terms of opportunity in employment, education and decent housing. Yet,
this community represents the aggregate and unified effort of all its residents and has
managed to continue to struggle for equality. One cannot help but see around them
the reminder of the struggle, of the resistance, of the hope. On each wall in
Ballymuiphy stands the stoiy of a people desperately wanting freedom, desperately
62


wanting a chance to rise above the adverse conditions they face each day. The
residents of this community of resistance stand behind each and every prisoner in the
H-blocks at Long Kesh prison and the women's prison facility at Armagh. On
windowsills throughout the community are the reminders of their straggle such as
"Free the POWs," and each household has a story that will remind you of how brave
their freedom fighters are, what they have accomplished, what they have
surrendered for the cause of the Republican movement.
Training and Development
Ballymurphy, a small community of 1,200 families in West Belfast, has come
to be known as a community to be reckoned with, a community that possesses such
solidarity that its match is yet to be found. Within this small community there are
sixty-four different community organizations that maintain a support system for each
of the families that reside in the community. In the summer of 1995, while staying
with a family in Ballymurphy, I was able to see first-hand the unity and solidarity of an
impoverished community, a community that experiences sixty to eighty percent
unemployment, and yet has highly trained-highly educated people unable to obtain
career positions because they are Catholic. Some of the residents of Ballymurphy
have been trained and retrained for employment positions that will probably never be
realized. The training center located a couple of miles from the heart of Ballymurphy
attempts to proceed optimistically with the unemployed and youth of the community,
all of which wait patiently and expectantly for the opportunity to become gainfully
employed. The director of the Springvale training center related what soon was
obvious, that Catholics in Northern Ireland are considered second class citizens.
Discrimination in jobs and housing has been thoroughly documented. The
director of the Springvale training center stated very clearly that
63


Teachers would not have trained Catholics or educated them,
for instance, in the fields of engineering or manufacturing, because,
traditionally these were predominantly Protestant areas of work
and we would have had just too much of an uphill struggle to get
a young person leaving school into an engineering company(Lyons: 1995).
Teaching, medicine, law, and construction are considered "Catholic" roles, which may
explain the overwhelming advances this segment of the population has experienced in
the past twenty seven years. The Catholic population is pursuing training, attempting
to get their fair share of the jobs that do come into the area. The Catholic population
and particularly the youth realize the false expectation of jobs occurring without
pursuit and preparation. Mary Lyons, director of a job training center, deliberately
focuses on competition for jobs at all levels, indicating "we can't expect all jobs to
come to the area just to be for ourselves and ourselves alone.'" In other words, I feel
there is a genuine incentive for both the Catholic and Protestant communities to live,
work, and develop the community jointly, for the success of the community as a
whole.
However, in the East Belfast Development center I met the director who
displayed a rather bleak picture of the Protestant community, portraying it as
fragmented and unable to compete with the Catholic organizational structure. East
Belfast Development Center director, Frank Draught elaborated on the condition of
the Protestant community and its sense of "hopelessness and lack of community
development," by portraying the Protestant community as having always been in
charge, always having the jobs, always being taken care of by the politicians, because
it was "our government." He felt that the current strength in the Catholic community
is a result of a fifty year history of struggle, a struggle he believed solidified the
community twenty seven years ago into a formidable group that was able to work
within the bureaucracy to make advances in its socio-economic situation. The
solidification of the Catholic community came as a result of consistent guidance and
64


support of the Catholic church. This appears to be the strength of communities like
Ballymurphy, as opposed to the Protestant communities of East Belfast. Protestants
have numerous different denominations, which proceed in different directions. Jobs
for a Protestant were virtually automatic, if you were an "orange man or woman"
(term referring to the Loyalist or Protestant), but power structures began to change in
the seventies. With the onslaught of the IRA and British involvement, jobs and
opportunities changed. A lot of businesses left Northern Ireland during the height of
the "troubles" and with them went opportunities in manufacturing and other jobs
typically given to Protestants.
I think the key to community involvement and the creation of jobs lies in focus
and investment. The Sinn Fein organization has developed over the past twenty seven
years a constituency of working class people that focus exclusively on issues within
the community, for example, housing for women who have many children and a
husband either in prison or not at home. Another focus is the approximate 90,000
homeless people in West Belfast. The success of this organization can be directly
linked to the unification of the community, coupled with the fact that ethnic identity is
closely linked to religious identity in this region. The unified communities, like
BaUymurphy, provide the opportunity for organizations like Sinn Fein to provide
services to the community without the fragmentation experienced by Protestant
communities. Val Martinez, the Consulate General of the United States praised the
organizational ability of Sinn Fein in his 1995 statement:
They (the Catholics and Republicans) are well represented in
West Belfast, they are probably the second largest political
party in Belfast. I would say here in Belfast, their organization
is superb, they are well organized. They have a grass roots
organizing; they've opened their own offices, they have
constituents in the offices. They are very energetic. So, whatever
one thinks of their politics, they do a good job in organizing,
65


especially in the cities. Especially among the working class and
unemployed in private areas (Martinez: 1995).
Re-examining some historical data reveals the fact that the Catholic
community, and in particular the community of Ballymuiphy, has suffered extensively
under the Protestant majority. One example, revealed by Fr. Des Wilson, was the
lack of any governmental plans to enhance the wealth-producing potential of
Ballymurphy. All development money channeled into Northern Ireland, particularly
Belfast, never seems to affect those with the most need-the Catholic population.
Instead, the grants, billions of dollars of which originate in the U.S., are funneled
through people who own existing businesses or are heavily influenced by the business
community, all of Protestant origin.
What has been created in the midst of the unequal distribution of grant money,
employment opportunities, and housing has been the solidification of the Catholic
community. What has also been created in the midst of the turmoil, discrimination,
and repression is distrust of the entire political structure in Northern Ireland by the
Catholic population.
Earlier in the year when I visited with the director of the Job training center,
she expressed optimism in the grant giving process, and hope for those in need of
employment. In my following visit in July there was a noticeable difference in her
level of enthusiasm It had just been revealed that the U. S'. government had awarded
the largest grant of money (2.7 billion dollars) to "Shorts Manufacturing." This
company is solely owned by Protestants and employs at the maximum less than five
percent Catholics. Her comment revealed her distrust in the system when she said, "I
should have known better than to trust the government to be more equitable in the
distribution of grant money...I guess that training we've been doing for all these
66


people has been for naught--the bastards1' (the Northern Ireland, British,and American
governments).
The Loyalist, however, experiences a distrust also, but not in the same realm
as the Catholic population. Many Loyalist see the British government is seen by many
as having abandoned their loyal subjects, citing consistent siding with the
"Nationalists" on issues that involve the sovereignty of the Ulster provinces. Many of
the Loyalists 1 interviewed expressed identical opinions about the Westminster
government, such as the betrayal they felt on issues such as negotiating with the IRA
and Sinn Fein, and issues surrounding shared political power in the six counties of
Northern Ireland. Although billions of dollars have been poured into development
programs of which the Loyalists have been the recipients, they insist it should remain
with those loyal to the crown and not be put into the Catholic community.
The vision of equality was very important to both the Nationalists and the
Loyalists, however it was viewed very differently. Equality, freedom and justice are
conceived in entirely different terms when speaking to the Loyalist and the
Nationalist. For the Loyalist, the issue of equality, justice and freedom is a social
process that evolves rather being designed or dictated, whereas, the Nationalist views
them as a desired result.
The differences between the Nationalist and Loyalist vision of equality, justice
and freedom are demonstrated in the priority attached to each goal One of the
contemporary clashes between the two visions is oriented toward compensatory
preferences. The Nationalists view this as imperative in the attainment of equality in
status and opportunity, with the anticipation of enabling the Nationalist population the
opportunity of obtaining results similar to those of the more fortunate Loyalist
majority. For those in the Nationalist camp, equality and freedom are not in conflict,
but represent a duality in application of similar principles, this has often been equated
67


with "political democracy" and "economic democracy." On the other hand, the
Loyalists maintain there is tremendous conflict between allowing freedom of
individual action and the prescribing of social equality.
Although equality definitively exists in the visions of both the Nationalists and
the Loyalists, the capabilities can vary enormously between the individual social
groups. The most significant difference between the Nationalists and the Loyalists
visions of equality does not exist in their individual perceptions of people as they are.
What distinguishes one vision from another lies in the arena of human potential
The concept of equality thus has opposite implications in
the two visions. To those with the unconstrained (Nationalist)
vision, a greater equalization of material conditions is imperative,
even if the means of accomplishing this require the more
morally and intellectually advanced to restrict the discretion of
others in the marketplace, or through judicial activism in the law,
or by other social or political devices.
But to those with the constrained (Loyalist) vision, the gap
between the actual and the potential is much smaller, and with
it there is a correspondingly smaller difference between the
intellectual and moral elite, on the one hand, and the ordinary
person on the other (Sowell 1987:138-139).
In the conflict of visions in Northern Ireland, the battle is not over the degree
of equality, but what exactly is to be equalized. The Nationalists maintain it is the
material conditions that require equalization, and power should be delegated to those
that possess moral and intellectual fortitude. The Loyalists have a vision of a united
"Ulster" that includes an evolved Catholic Nationalist population that has been
incorporated into the traditions held most important by the Protestant majority. The
Irish Republican Army, representative of the interests of the Catholic population want
a unified Ireland of thirty-two counties. Each vision differs significantly, each with its
68


own agenda and priorities, and each wanting what the other has and does not want or
intends to share.
There are some within Protestant circles with whom I spoke, that envision the
IRA as wicked, evil in intent, and malevolent, an entity of Roman Catholic origin, or
as a communistic organization bent on recreating a socialist state. However, a great
many Catholics do not share that vision, seeing these individuals as patriots, heroes,
above reproach and a competent group representing the reuniting of their country.
Those who advocate of non-violence and road of diplomacy over that of the gun, find
the tactics of the IRA unpalatable and inexplicable. The IRA as a whole really do not
care to address the agendas of others, this organization has a role (they feel) that has
been defined, documented, and empowered through the Dublin parliament in 1921.
The constituency this organization represents is different from the perceived or
exaggerated one portrayed in certain circles. It must be noted, however, that any
armed struggle, particularly one that involves violence in two countries, is not an easy
matter to define or defend. Terror (as defined by the British government) is no more
inexplicable than any other strategy used in war or civil conflict. It represents in itself
a means to an end. This is the essence, the very nature of an "irregular war."
The Republican "Dream"
The IRA represents more than just the perceived defenders of a minority,
vulnerable to the will of a dominant majority. Each member of the IRA is a "true
believer" in what is being done, representing much more than class identity,
encompassing the lives of relatives, past and present, families, and communities. The
IRA movement is a life unto itself The dream of a united Ireland, although
contradictory to some by present standards, often denied by many, and viewed as
impractical by even more, provides the fuel that maintains the Republican movement.
Often one realizes a united Republic for only a few moments as the symbolic funereal
69


volley over a fallen comrade's coffin pierces the ears of the mourners. A united
Ireland, an Ireland of equality in opportunity, has been the dream of the IRA in its
struggle against the British government, and many in this country have been touched
by the Republican dream. Whether acknowledging or discarding the feeling, they
have been touched by it. Yet, to the amazement of all, this movement has generation
after generation being renewed by the faithful, fighting to make the dream a reality.
The campaigns of the IRA have assumed the sensational, have experienced
inexcusable blunders, betrayal and schism, but there are countless numbers who still
wish to be a member of this organization. Each volunteer is dedicated and
determined in spite of the burden of history. They carry with them a past often
misread, misused, and misunderstood, but a past that has never nor will ever be
forgotten. The IRA knows what is wrong with Ireland, and they also know how to
correct it, what will be the prize in the end. From the certainty each and everyone of
them shares, the dream supplies the organization with the necessary power to persist.
To the IRA, the dream and its solution are simple. Remove the British from Irish soil
The only appropriate way in which to achieve this is through armed struggle, not
compromise or conventional politics. According to Gerry Adams of the Sinn Fein
organization, a united Republic would re-instill the common name of Irishmen,
destroying the denominational barriers that have tom the country apart for many years
and re-unite the population as a whole, free from the bondage of the British
government.
Each member of the IRA is committed to the armed struggle with the British
and enjoys a vast support network of those considered to be the "invisible
Republicans," i.e., those willing to be passively involved, supplying a house, providing
a look-out, or looking the other direction. Almost every member of this organization
has spent their entire life within the movement, representing the workers party. This
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organization has few dissenters. Regardless of position within the organization, every
member at some point in his or her life becomes a true believer in the cause of the
Republican movement. The numbers who have participated in the Republican
movement, in the IRA, are in the thousands. Not all of those who chose to join the
ranks of the movement were idealists, but as an observer I would venture to guess
that the majority, if not all, were touched by the "dream"
For the Republican "dream" to be realized and the authenticity of its objectives
understood, acceptance and recognition must originate from the world community.
In order to achieve this end the political status of the IRA and Sinn Fein must be
validated by the international community, of political entities such as the nations of
the United States, France, Germany, and Great Britain. In Northern Ireland, the Sinn
Fein organization is working towards accomplishing the "dream" of the Republican
movement.
Sinn Fein represents the legal arm of the IRA and is a political wing fiercely
fighting to have its message heard. For many years the voice of the Sinn Fein
organization and its current President Gerry Adams have been censored, forbidden to
have its message spread to the people in Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Great
Britain. Until recently, this organization has had to rely upon word of mouth and
hearsay to get its message across. When the opportunity presented itself rather than
being able to share Sinn Fein's message, questions were directed towards reactions
about the actions of the IRA, as opposed to the "dream" of the Catholics in Northern
Ireland. From a recognition stand point, Sinn Fein suffers from a crisis in both
identity and stratification. The organization fails to attract enough support from those
people in classes other than the working class. One of the communication officers of
the organization freely admitted that Sinn Fein has to rely on people who may not
71


have the necessary educational qualifications to attract people from other social
classes but are "streetwise."
Sinn Fein must be recognized as a separate entity from the IRA. Each entity,
the IRA and Sinn Fein, have different agendas, different objectives, but one goal: the
goal of a united Ireland. A Chancellor for the Sinn Fein organization drew a
correlation between the issues and conflict in Northern Ireland to those occurring
during "apartheid" in South Africa.
Paralleling the Protestants in Northern Ireland with the Whites in South
Africa, the Chancellor alluded to the privilege and position enjoyed by the white
population in South Africa for so many years, comparing it to the wealth, position,
and privilege the Protestants have enjoyed for so many decades. "We have never seen
the sun, never enjoyed that privilege, and we are in the process of building that for
everyone, not just simply for ourselves, because that would be reverse discrimination
and that doesn't resolve anybody's problems" (Mortice, Sinn Fein: 1995).
Members of Sinn Fein admit the Nationalist community has improved over the
past twenty-seven years, citing they have "moved from second class citizens to second
class citizens of rebellion." Still, by admission the organization and the community at
large lacks the support and participation in the Republican movement from individuals
who are educated and have positions conducive to creating change.
The longevity of the conflict in this city has created a vacuum, attracting the
most promising and the most gifted to areas outside of Belfast and Northern Ireland,
some to find employment, others tired of the conflict. This conflict encourages those
with aspirations for a better future to emigrate to a country which offers equality,
education, and opportunity to fulfill whatever dreams they may have. Sinn Fein's goal
is to get involved in the lives of those within the community, to help them understand
each other's capabilities. Sinn Fein focuses its energy on the needs of those in the
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community. Sinn Fein's focus allows the organization not to stray from its objective
and continue to build from within "this community of rebellion," developing a
dynamically sound community with a sense of worth and a desire to achieve the
"dream" of the Republican movement.
Citing the determination of the residents of West Belfast, the communications
officer of Sinn Fein paraphrased the thoughts of the families of Ballymuiphy and their
determination to better themselves through a collective effort in one of our many
conversations:
The families that live in BaUymuiphy have come through a
lot over the years. Probably more so than a lot of other
areas, they've really somehow jelled together. Whereas in
a lot if other areas, like the Falls, people would just leave
hoping to better themselves, trying to get a different house, a
different job. But in Ballymurphy that doesn't seem to be the
case, people will just get a house around the comer or just up
a side street, anywhere in that areathey dont want to leave
and I think that is because of the camaraderie that exist in that
particular area. There are only a couple of areas in Belfast that
have the same tightness about them, and the Shortstrand is
another area of Belfast that would have the same feelpeople
are just reluctant to move out of those areas. I know of people
that have moved away from these areas and then can't wait to get
back to them because they experience something that is totally
alien to what they are used to. Because of the families, because of
the neighbors dropping in, because everyone was aware of what
was going on, everyone knows who is in the area. If something
happens people in your area are the first to rally to your support.
There is a lot of togetherness, a lot of camaraderie in both the
Shortstrand and Ballymuiphy areas, a lot of community and
tightness and security, they're good strong people .
(Communications officer, Sinn Fein: 1995).
The Catholics residing in such areas as Ballymuiphy and Shortstrand are
closely tied to one another, and collectively within the community. Life in these
communities is far from the standards of the European community in which they
73


reside. Although conditions have vastly improved, I listened to recollections of
childhood violence that remain forever etched in the psyche of each and every adult.
Conversations can be overheard of life in West and North Belfast with little food,
clothing, and hope, conversations that offer some insight into the roots of the conflict
that existed and currently exists in Northern Ireland. In the pubs of Ballymurphy, I
heard men, women, and children reflect daily upon their childhood, on the
discrimination they experienced while growing up and question what it was they did
to deserve such a fate. Being one of six people that resided in a house quaintly
referred to as "two up and two down" (two bedrooms up and a kitchen and sitting
room downstairs), the communications officer of Sinn Fein reflected briefly about his
childhood and the conditions under which he was brought up.
Mother, Father and three other brothers-so six in all were
brought up in what we call "two up and two down." What
that meant was that two bedrooms upstairs and downstairs
you had the kitchen and you had the sitting room and as I say
the yard was your toilet basically--we had no toilet at that time.
You grow up with those sort of conditions and you are aware
at that particular time there is not a lot of money about. For
instance, I seen many a time, I'm no to sure if you are familiar
with brown sauce, but brown sauce would be something that
you would put on chips, on potatoes, on fish. I have seen me
sitting down many a night with a round of bread with brown
sauce on it, and that was your table. Many times you sit down
and you have bread and the wee triangles of cheese, that was
because there wasn't a lot of money and you are aware, you are
living in a mixed area, there are a lot of Protestants-but they
had money at least a lot more than any Catholic family had. I
would often run about in plastic shoes and plastic sandals in
the summer, plastic shoes in the wintertime. You have short
trousers on and you are always getting hand-me-downs
because there are four brothers. I remember distinctly when
we made our first communion, my mother brought me round
to the pawn shop and you went through the sacks of the clothes
people had left. There is where I got my clothes for my first
communion, and my confirmation as well. You knew that you
74


weren't alone, because many of your Mends had the clothes
from the pawn shop also, most people went through it then
but today a lot of things are changing in that respect. Those were
really hard times, we didn't have a lot facilities the way you do
now with the leisure centers. So when I was young there was
no place to really go, a couple of boxing clubs, you were basically
confined to the streets and because you are on the streets, the
conflicts began-particularly in 1969. That was the year when a
lot of people got burned out by the Protestants and the Police,
when you had to live on the streets. You had to witness everything
first hand, the hatred, the beatings, the killing, you were witnessing
all this first hand-and you couldn't help getting caught upwhich is what
happened to me (Communications officer, Sinn Fein: 1995).
The communications officer explained to me that getting involved in the
movement began for almost all participants in the Republican movement by the age of
thirteen or fourteen years old. Involvement included the closest Mends in the block
and the Mends with which you went to school. It also meant leaving school to get
involved, dropping out of school to pursue a dream of greater glory, to accomplish
something, to contribute in some fashion to the bettering of one's neighborhood, one's
life and the life of one's family. A few years after his participation in the "troubles" in
Northern Ireland, the communications officer had been arrested and imprisoned.
Although most of those interned were Catholic, arresting almost anyone, for whatever
charge they could create, just to get them off the streets. The British army focused on
students, as they were seen to be the biggest threat due to the numerous and often
volatile nature of demonstrations, and people the army suspected to be Republican
and those sympathetic.
After seventeen years of incarceration in the "H" blocks at LongKesh prison,
the communications officer for Sinn Fein was released. He had been in prison longer
than most of the other inmates and still could not understand why he was considered a
threat because of the severity of his injuries he sustained as a result of a bomb
explosion, but he nonetheless spent his time until his release four years ago.
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Maintaining the "dream" of a united Ireland, the communications officer soon joined
forces with Sinn Fein in their P.O.W. department. During a conversation he
emphasized repeatedly how important it was not to take a "back seat" in this effort,
how he could not become complacent regardless of how long he had spent in prison.
He has maintained the "dream" and is pursuing it to help those that have been dealt a
blow in their lives, because they are Catholic. The communications officer and the
Sinn Fein organization are working feverishly to provide assistance to the community
they serve, and to participate in the peace negotiations that will someday bring an end
to the violence in Northern Ireland.
The people of Ballymurphy remain unified. It is a community that has
weathered civil war at its worst. This is a community that has tremendous pride and
tenacity, a community that possesses the "dream" and lives each day to fulfill that
dream of a united Ireland. They are staunchly Republican and pro Sinn Fein, and
represent what I think more communities should be like, strong in convictions and
single minded in will and determination. They have very strong family values that
carry into everyday activities. This proud community is the heart of the Republican
movement and its people exemplify that belief Although plagued with very high
unemployment (and generational unemployment) each member of this community has
a function, a purpose, and an obligation to fulfill to the community.
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CHAPTER 6
CONCLUSION
Perspectives on conflict include the theoretical, sociological, political, cultural,
and religious. What perspective best provides an effective understanding of cultural
violence? What is the best tool to utilize when describing those involved in the
conflict? This research has addressed the issue of conflict in Northern Ireland
contextually, theoretically, and inteipersonally. The British government and the U.S.
government as well wish to portray the situation diplomatically, without disclosure of
the conditions, the interventions, the negotiations, or the roles of varying factions
either included or excluded from participation in the decisions being made on behalf
of the residents of Belfast and the remainder of Northern Ireland.
For the residents of Ballymurphy, those forced to live under oppressive and
repressive conditions, conflict cannot be considered a phenomenon that is
socioculturally fragmented. It is intrinsic to everyday life. "Conflict cannot be
excluded from social life...Peace is nothing more than a change in the form of the
conflict or in the antagonists or in the objects of the conflict, or finally in the chances
of selection" (Weber 1968:232). Literature defines conflict as a cultural phenomenon,
a form of social interaction, which may vary from one society to another, but remains
defined by that society. In this particular instance, the conflict is systematically
defined through the "armed struggle" with British imperialism. The very nature of
conflict is subjective, being defined and redefined in not only content but form and
character as well. Conflict cannot be dismissed as exceptional, irrational, or void of
meaning, nor can it be categorized as something instinctual. Conflict and its violent
77


manifestations represent human behavior responding to external forces that are often
the result of stratification.
Conflict interpretation requires an understanding of the norms, ideologies,
values, and world-view of a society, based on the premise that the participants within
that society have societally shared characteristics. Abner Cohen strongly emphasized
the dynamics that existed between conflict, cultural symbols, and power relations,
particularly the interrelationship or "causal interconnections" between culture and
power. Cohen argued that "culture (symbolism) and power are the two major
variables that pervade all social life, and that anthropology is best suited to the
analysis of the relationship between the two domains" (Cohen 1979:11). It is my
opinion that the struggle that exists between the Catholic population and the
British/Protestants amounts to a struggle between the rich and the poor. It has also
surpassed being a struggle over work, the right to own property, discrimination, and
repression. It has also become a struggle of interpretation of the past and the present
and how the future will be shaped. The conflict further represents a struggle in the
identification of causes, and the assessment of blame.
It appears to me that relations among caste/race groups,
ethnic groups and classes are becoming starkly simplified
that the lines are being clearly drawn between those who
have and those who have not; between the rich and poor;
between high caste and low caste; between "developed"
nations and "developing" ones. The subtleties and complexities
seem to be diminishing, and with them the niceties are being
dropped. Naked power is being resorted to more unabashedly
as the conflict becomes more evident, the contenders more
clearly defined, the means less camouflaged, the rules less
constraining, noblesse oblige less practiced, the use of force
more blatant, the stakes greater, the rewards and injuries
more stark Therefore, I think, the incidence, the likelihood
and the impact of overt conflict between unequals is increasing
both within and between societies and nations (Berreman 1977:235).
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Conflict and group violence in any form have proven to be an effective and
perhaps rational means of achieving a political end. In 1969, when the IRA re-
emerged as an element of contention in the fight against the British, the violence that
ensued for the next two decades brought about significant changes in political, socio-
economic, educational, and living conditions in and around Belfast. I would contend
that the confrontational approach taken by the IRA does not justify the ends and that
an alternative approach could have been sought. However, conflict must be
understood in terms of possessing both functional and dysfunctional aspects. Conflict
can and has produced social order and stability contrastly, conflict has also produced
disorder and change.
It is self-defeating to study violence as if it were obscene,
nor does recognition of its relevance condone or encourage
it. Quite the contrary is true. Like many things, violence is
deeply ambiguous in all its aspects, containing both functional
and dysfunctional tendencies, capable of both positive and
negative outcomes (Nieburg 1969:9).
In Northern Ireland, the politics of confrontation has become just that,
confrontational politics. It has proven to be an effective means by which and through
which to improve the bargaining position for the Catholics in Belfast and the
remainder of Northern Ireland. The preferred tactics of political participation,
petition, and peaceful demonstrations have gone unnoticed, social change remained
unchanged, and the future of the residents ofBelfast's Catholic population is
uncertain. On the other hand, I would maintain that the conflict and confrontational
politics have provided a means by which much has been accomplished in the past
twenty seven years. It suggests to me that the axiom of power-conflict theory lies on
the premise that no relatively advantaged, powerful or dominant group is ever willing
to relinquish the power or position that have. "Tragically, the rich and poweriid are
79


almost never persuaded to change through reasoned argument or moral persuasion.
The mobilization of power is the major, if not only, means of achieving progressive
change in stratified societies" (Sluka 1992: 31).
It is my opinion that the root causes of the conflict and violence in Northern
Ireland can be directly traced to the correlates of social stratification. In 1969, Belfast
witnessed the eruption of a population subjected to generations of inequality to
wealth, status and power, discrimination, repression, and oppression. The social
stratification that existed then still exists, fueling the flames of conflict in response to
the ethnic, religious, and ideological discrimination. In a previous study, Beireman
noted that,
wherever there is significant disparities between social groups in
access to life chances, there is suffering and conflict because these
are systems which assure privilege to some at the expense of others,
and people do not acquiesce easily to that situation. When they do,
it is not because they agree to its legitimacy or inevitability, but because
they know the uses of power (Berreman 1977:229).
Without restructuring the existing form ofBelfast's society, without
redistributing the balance of power to an equitable state, the cause of social conflict
and political violence will continue because of the social stratification. I continue to
maintain that the causes of violence in Northern Ireland cannot be removed or
alleviated without altering the current structure. If peace is to be realized in the North
of Ireland there must be a diligent and genuine effort placed in resolving or at least
seriously reducing the grievances of those who have chosen to engage in
confrontational politics. Social inequality cannot be eliminated, nor can oppression,
or exploitation of the underclass, but certainly it can be reduced by addressing with
sincerity the grievances of those voicing disapproval. Incremental reduction in the
scope and intensity of the causes of conflict can create a rippling effect that can be
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seen and heard throughout the world. If there is to be an end to the violence in
Northern Ireland, it will have to come from an international community that does not
have a stake in the future of Northern Ireland. People from the European community
that will objectively and logically evaluate the current issues being negotiated and
make recommendations that would expedite resolution.
The words "freedom, justice, and power" all have different meanings to the
Protestant and Catholic that lives in Belfast, who lives either in the Shankill or Falls
area, or the Ballymuiphy area of that city. Each vision of reality differs from the
other, visions are inherently in conflict, but both visions are nonetheless concerned
with social results. The Republican vision includes the achievement of socio-
economic and political reforms that are the product of collective decision making.
For Republicans the degree of freedom they wish to achieve is the degree to which
one's desires can be realized, the potential understood, regardless of the obstacles,
whether that would assume the form of a restrictive government or some other
prerequisite. For Loyalists, the clash that exists between the two visions lies not in
the actual degree of freedom, justice or power, but the fact that in each of these
concepts there can only be "degrees of' and not "absolutes." Visions help to provide
explanations for ideological differences, which have been directly responsible for
political differences. In the final analysis, the implications and dynamics of each vision
can assist in the clarification of the issues, without diminishing in importance either
the dedication or significance of one's vision.
In Belfast, degrees of conflict will be inevitable for some time. That is just a
social reality, however, what is not inevitable are social conditions. These conditions
are created by people, endorsed by a majority, and what people are capable of
creating, they are capable of dismantling and recreating. Wars are fought on many
fronts. This war is fought in the streets, the neighborhoods, the prisons and in the
81


political arenas of Belfast. What sustains the momentum and provides the fuel to
continue the struggle are oppression, repression, discrimination and missed
opportunity. In Belfast, the struggle remains the same: equality, both politically and
domestically. I contend that once social changes have occurred and there is greater
equality in representation, confrontational politics will diminish. The complexity of
political contention in Northern Ireland has led many to believe that a solution does
not exist as it presently stands. The United States and the international community
can play a very positive and significant role in the solution of the problems that exist
in Northern Ireland, by creating a climate conducive to a successful peace process.
Active participation in the affairs of Northern Ireland by the international community
could be a viable solution to the current stagnation in the peace negotiations.
hi Ireland consensus exists that naked force is an illegitimate form of
authority. However, in this instance, there exists a significant number of people who
support the legitimacy of Sinn Fein and the IRA. Throughout many towns in the
North of Ireland there are people that genuinely acknowledge an existence of a state
of war with Great Britain and demand the removal of the security forces. Eamonn
McCann states, "The IRA claimed recognition as the sole inheritors of the Republican
tradition, a status which, once asserted, cannot by its nature be subjected to
democratic contestation...theirs was a philosophy which presented the people...with
no problems. One might disagree with it, and many did, but it was not our tradition
to disrespect it."
The republican struggle is strong, confident and will
continue for as long as it needs to. We have come
through years of vilification and marginalization. We
are never going back to that. We are moving forward.
There are no backward steps, no standing still-there is
only one way-and that is forward to a free Ireland and
a lasting peace (Adams 1994:204).
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GLOSSARY
Anglo-Irish Agreement- A document agreed to by the Fine Gael/Labor coalition
Government of Ireland and Mrs. Thatcher's Conservative Government in the United
Kingdom in 1985. It stipulates that there shall be no change in the constitutional
position of Northern Ireland for so long as the majority wishes to remain as part of
the United Kingdom
Articles Two and Three of the Irish Constitution- These two provisions of the Irish
constitution lay claim to all thirty-two counties of Ireland.
Claim na Gael- An Irish-American Nationalist organization founded in 1867 in the
wake of the failed Fenian rising and later linked to the Irish Republican Brotherhood.
Dail Eireann- Irish Parliament.
Devolution- The delegation or surrender of power formerly held by a central
government to regional or local authorities.
E.E.C.- European Economic Community.
Fianna Fail- "Warriors of Fail" (a poetic symbol for Ireland). Founded in 1923 by
Eamon de Valera when he split with Sinn Fein, this is the largest and most powerful
of the Irish political parties.
I.N.L.A.- Irish National Liberation Army. A splinter group from the IRA.
I.R.A.- Irish Republican Army. Formerly the Irish Republican Brotherhood. A
revoultionary secret society dedicated to establishing an Irish Republic by force. First
known as the Fenians. It was reorganzied as the Irish Republican Brotherhood in
1873 and formally became the current IRA in 1918 to 1919.
I.R.B.- Irish Republican Brotherhood, the Fenians, set up in 1858 as a revolutionary
movement.
Loyalists- Loyal to the Union, these are the Ulster Protestants opposed to a thirty-
two county Ireland. (Same as Unionists).\
83


Orange Order- (Orangeman) Name taken from the victory of Protestant William of
Orange over Catholic King James II. A powerful sectarian order of Protestants
characterized by ritualistic pageantry and supremacist celebrations.
Provisionals- (Provos) Now the major IRA force.
Republicans- Supporting a thirty-two county Ireland. (Catholics).
R. U.C.- Royal Ulster Constabulary. Police force for Northern Ireland.
S. D.L.P.- Social Democratic and Labor Party. Support the necessity of majority
consent in Northern Ireland. It is largely middle class. (Catholic).
Sinn Fein- "Ourselves Alone." Political party and wing of the Provisional ERA
Mainly supported by working class Catholics.
Six Counties- Six of the nine counties which make up the province of Ulster.
Thirty-Two Counties- The Republic of Ireland and the Six Counties-a united Ireland.
U.D.A- Ulster Defense Association. The major Protestant paramilitary group in
Northern Ireland.
U.D.R.- Ulster Defense Regiment. Another Protestant paramilitary organization.
U.F.F.- Ulster Freedom Fighters. A UDA group claiming responsibility for several
sectarian murders.
Ulster- This should correspond to the ancient nine-county province of Ulster. The
term is now erroneously synonymous with the Six-Counties in Northern Ireland
claimed by the Unionists.
Unionists- Those supporting the 1800 Act of Union when Ireland became a part of
the United Kingdom and totally opposed to any breaking of ties of the Six Counties
with Britain. (Loyalists).
U. V.F.- Ulster Volunteer Force. It is a Protestant paramilitary group who have
claimed responsibility for several sectarian killings
84


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Adams, Gerry
1994 Free Ireland:Towards a Lasting Peace. Roberts Rinehart
Publishers,P.O. Box 666, Niwot, Colorado 80544.
Barr, Glen
1994 The Loyalist Agenda in The Edge of the Union: The Ulster
Loyalist Political Vision. Steve Bruce, author. Pg. 102. Oxford
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Berreman, Gerald D.
1977 Social Barrier: Caste, Class and Race in Cross-Cultural
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Bruce, Steve
1994 The Edge of the Union. The Ulster Loyalist Political Vision.
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Bell, J. Bowyer
1992 IRA Tactics and Targets. Poolberg Press Ltd. Dublin, Ireland
Cohen, Abner
1992 Political Symbolism Annual Review of Anthropology 8:87-113
In Paths to Domination. Resistance, and Terror. Pg. 25. Carolyn
Nordstrom and Joann Martin eds. University of California Press.
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Coogan, Tim Pat
1987 Disillusioned Decades. Ireland 1966-87. Gill and Macmillan Ltd.
Dublin, Ireland.
Coogan, Tim Pat
1993 The IRA: A History. Roberts Rinehart Publishers. Niwot, Colorado.
Coser, Lewis
1992 The Anthropology of Conflict In The Paths to Domination Resistance
and Terror. Pg.22. Carolyn Nordstrom and Joann
Martin eds. University of California Press. Berkeley, Los Angeles,
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Coser, Lewis
1992 Structures of Authority. In The Encyclopedia of the Social
Sciences. PP. 232-236. D. Sills ed. New York: Crowell, Collins
and MacMillan.
Crenshaw, Martha
1995 Terrorism in Context. Pennsylvania University Press, University
Park, Pennsylvania. Martha Crenshaw, editor.
Dahrendorf Ralf
1992 Structural functionalism and the Conflict Theory
Alternatives. In Sociological Theory. Pg. 263. George Ritzer ed.
McGraw-Hill Publishers.
De Baroid, Ciaran
1989 Ballvmurphv and the Irish War. Pluto Press, London N65AA and
Irish Books and Media, USA
Friedman, Milton
1987 Visions of Equality. Tti A Conflict ofVisions:Ideological
OH gins of Political Struggles. Thomas Sowell, author. Pg. 122.
William Martin and Co. Inc. Publishers. New York.
Laquer, Walter
1987 The Age of Terrorism Little, Brown and Company, Boston, Toronto
and London.
Lip set, Seymour
1990 Consensus and Conflict: Essays on Political Sociology. Transaction
Publishers, New Brunswick (USA) and London (UK).
Moss, Robert
1971 Urban Guerrillas.
Nieburg, H.L.
1969 Political Violence. In Paths to Domination Resistance and
Terror. Pg. 9. Carolyn Nordstrom and Joann Martin eds. University
of California. Berkeley, Los Angeles, Oxford.
Nordstrom, Carolyn and Martin, Joann
1992 The Paths to Domination. Resistance, and Terror. University of
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California Press. Carolyn Nordstrom and JoAnn Martin editors.
Ritzer, George
1992 Contemporary Sociological Theory. McGraw- Hill Inc. Publishers.
Ritzer, George
1992 Sociological Theory. McGraw-Hill Inc. Publishers.
Sands, Bobby
1981 Prison quote during hunger strike.
Sowell, Thomas
1987 A Conflict of Visions: Ideological origins of Political Struggles.
Quill, William Morrow Publisher, New York.
Sluka, Jefferey
1992 The Anthropology of Conflict. In The Paths to Domination-
Resistance and Terror, pp. 21-31. Carolyn Nordstrom and Joann
Martin eds. University of California Press. Berkeley, Los Angeles, Oxford.
Sluka, Jefferey
1992 Political Murals in Northern Ireland. In The Paths to Domination-
Resistance and Terror. Carolyn Nordstrom and Joann Martin eds. University
of California Press. Berkeley, Los Angeles, Oxford.
Smith, M.L.R.
1995 Fighting for Ireland The Military Strategy of the Irish Republican
Movement. Routledge Publishers, London and New York.
Spencer, Tony
1989 The Early Days. In Ballvmurphv and the Trish War. Ciarann
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Weber, Max
1992 Class, Status and Party and Structures of Authority. In
Sociological Theory. George Ritzer ed. PP. 127-129. McGraw-Hill
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"WALLS OF BELFAST" A STUDY OF THE CONFLICT IN NORTHERN IRELAND by John E. Irwin B.A. Colorado Christian University, 1991 M.A University of Colorado at Denver, 1996 A thesis submitted to the University of Colorado at Denver in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts Anthropology 1996

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This thesis for the Master of Art in Anthropology degree by John E. Irwin has been approved by ) Kitty Corbett Robert Carlsen

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Irwin, John E. (M.A Anthropology) "Walls ofBelfast" A study in the conflict in Northern Ireland Thesis directed by Dr. Kitty Corbett ABSTRACT thesis is an ethnography of the conflict that exists in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The study descnoes the experiences and perceptions of repression, prejudice, and discrimination as recounted by residents of the Ballymurphy section of Belfast. This thesis examines theoretical perspectives on conflict as defined by social scientists and concerned citizens in Ireland and Great Britain in an effort to better grasp their philosophical differences. Data are drawn from literature on the conflict, political organizations, religious activists and accounts of thirty people affected from both sides of the conflict in Belfast. Political perspectives on both sides of this conflict provide insight into the dilemmas and posstole solutions to this 27 year conflict. This abstract accurately represents the content of the candidate's thesis. I recommend its publication. Kitty Corbett Signed \

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DEDICATION I dedicate this thesis to those residents ofBallymurphy and the members of Sinn Fein without whom this thesis would not have been completed. I would further like to dedicate this thesis to all Catholics residing in Northern Ireland and the struggle they must endure on a daily basis and to those Republicans remaining steadfast in their convictions to see Ireland reunited. I cannot complete this dedication without a special thanks to my wife and son, who had to endure three years of constant studying and an uncompromising schedule that often left them out. I would like to end this dedication with a quote, "Irishmen and Irishwomen: In the name of God and ofthe dead generations from which she receives her old tradition of nationhood, Ireland, through us, summons her children to the flag and strikes her freedom" (1916 Proclamation).

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ACKNOWLEDGMENT I would like to express my thanks to the staff of the Graduate School of Anthropology at the University of Colorado at Denver for their support, guidance, and superior teaching. I would particularly like to thank Dr. Kitty Corbett for her untiring patience during this process and for the undivided attention she was willing to provide at any moment. I would further like to thank Dr. Robert Carlsen, who was my first professor in Anthropology ail.d was pivotal in my decision to pursue Anthropology. Finally, I would like to personally thank Dr. Linda Curran and Dr. Craig Janes: both professors challenged me to become a better student ll.D.d were a source of great encouragement during this program

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CONTENTS PREFACE ........................................................................................... vii CHAPTER 1. IN"'TR.ODUCTION ....................................................... l 2. "FREE IRElAND": IDSTORICAL PERSPECTIVES ......................................................... 6 MAP OF NORTIIERN IRELAND ............................. 16 3. TIIEORIES OF CONFLICT ...................................... I? 4. PERSPECTIVES OF PARTICIPANTS IN" TIIE CONFLICT "SHANKILL--NO-SURRENDER": PERSPECTIVES OF LOYALISTS (PROTESTANTS) ..... ; ............................................... 25 "VICTORY TO TIIE PROVISIONAL IRA: PERSPECTIVES OF REPUBLICANS (CATHOLICS) ............................. .34 5 BAILYMURPHY: A COMMUNITY OF RESISTANCE .................................................... 44 MAP OF mNERBELFAST .................................... .47 6. CONCLUSION ........................................................ 76 GLOSSARY .................................................................................... 83 BffiLIOGRAPHY ............................................................................ 85 vi

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PREFACE This thesis is about the conflict in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The data gathered for this document is representative of conversations, interviews, and literature reviews conducted and researched over a period of three years. However, while gathering this information my personal view and opinion on the conflict began to change, to explain that change, I feel it appropriate to share a personaljour.il.ey that began in 1969. In 1969, while an active part of the anti-Viet-Nam War movement, I became interested in the "troubles" as they were depicted in Northern Ireland. At that time, while the United States was experiencing its own civil rights movement, complete with demonstrations, riots, and unfortunate fatalities, Belfast and the rest ofNorthern Ireland also was in the midst of experiencing a civil rights movement of its own. Influenced by the words and actions of Martin Luther King Jr., the Catholics in Northern Ireland chose to respond to the discrimination, prejudice, poor housing, and unemployment in a non-violent manner. Unfortunately, because of misunderstanding or misintexpretation the police and military in Northern Ireland, not properly trained, mishandled and overreacted to the demonstrations, and confrontations resulted in large scale rioting and loss oflife. Being of Irish descent and raised Catholic, I experienced a bond between myself and the Irish protesters. For me, what occurred in Belfast in 1969 suddenly became of greater importance than the demonstrations I actively participated in .. For the next ten years I spent many nights searching for information about what had vii

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occurred in Northern Ireland. At the same time, I became captivated with the Irish Republican Army (IRA), who had now been classified by the international community as a .,terrorist., organization. I distinctly recollect increasing my support of the IRA, admiring the stance they had taken on behalf of a people wanting an equal voice, equal opportunity, a job with some dignity, and a house they could ow:O.. I envisioned the British and the Protestants as perpetrators ofhate and discrimination, a collective entity without conscience. In the latter part of 1979, the tactics of the IRA were changing, and with that my feelings towards the IRA and their campaigns began to change as well. In retrospect what occurred coincided with a return to a church setting, a Protestant church at that. In the spring ofl990, after having written three successful grants through the Presbyterian church I brought a team often people to Belfast, Northern Ireland. The purpose of this trip was to establish small group structures at the local church level to determine whether or not small groups structures could or would be a successful tool in reconciliation efforts an area of perceived conflict. I spent thirty days in Ireland, gathering information :from a variety of sources, while at the same time my photojournalist associate exhausted himself in an effort to capture the essence of the pain and anguish of Belfast. Upon returning to the United States I solicited the assistance of a trusted and long time friend to make sense of the photos, to understand what had been captured on film while in Northern Ireland. During the summer (1990) I wrote and produced a short documentary about the trip, attempting to capture the emotions and messages of those in the video. As a result of viii

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this video I had numerous speaking engagements at a variety of organizations in Denver. It wasn't until three years later that I discovered a disturbing truth; the information that I had gathered, spoke to hundreds of people about, told only one side of the story. The information I had obtained came from British government, the Presbyterian church and numerous Protestant organizations. However, photographic efforts had dehoerately focused on Catholic men, women and children, to provide an emotional outlet and identity for the video documentary. As a result of this discovery I use disclaimers prior to showing the tape to any organizations. Although statistically accurate the video represented the view only from a Protestant perspective. I have discovered as a result of that trip the need to discover the "another truth" from the actual participants in the conflict. Since that discovery, I have made a concerted and dehoerate effort to gather information that would enable me to better assess the current situation in Northern Ireland. In subsequent trips I made sure that I had interviewed representatives from both sides of the conflict, in equal numbers. The interviews often required enduring fourteen hour days and constant interviews. In a January trip, while concluding the fact gathering, I was able to interview a member of the Sinn Fein organization (legal and political wing of the IRA); this was an interview that I had desperately wanted to do. I was granted an audience with one of the communications officers, a man, who over the course of the next two years I have grown to know quite well The interview lasted more than three hours, discussing numerous subjects and ended with his asking "will you have a drink with us ix

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later at a pub?" I distinctly remember that night. I waited for about forty-five minutes before the communications officer entered the pub, accompanied by two other men. The evening was spent listening to 11trad.itional" Irish music and conversing. The trip, regardless of the grueling schedule I kept, had been a success. In July (1995), I had the honor and privilege to stay with a Catholic family in the Ballym.urphy section of Belfast. This section of Belfast is reputed to be an IRA and Sinn Fein stronghold. The living arrangements had been organized by the communications officer at Sinn Fein. He maintained I should get the other side of the story, and experience Belfast more profoundly. On July 12th, a Protestant celebration occurs in Belfast that can only be compared to the fourth ofJuly celebration in this country. On the eve of this Protestants erect huge wooden structures exclusively to set them on :fire at night. On that particular night, July lith, the sky was overcast, with a slight drizzle. I was alone that night (the family had left the city because of expected rioting and shootings) watching the evening sky grow darker and darker. By 10 p.m as I stood in the doorway watching the sky I couldn't help but be in awe; the entire sky was a bright orange. The bonfires set by the Protestants were done as a reminder of the defeat the Catholics experienced 305 years previous at the hands ofWilliam of Orange at the Battle ofBoyne. Standing in the doorway, I could see others in the neighborhood looking at the sky as well, but what I saw was not the look of awe or amazement, but of oppression and disdain. The pain was obvious. Years of discrimination, prejudice and hatred were clearly written on their faces. For the :first X

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time I shared what it might feel like to be Catholic in Belfast. The feeling is difficult to explain, but it might be compared to a victim of a brutal attack or a personal violation, who is left feeling dirty, unwanted and a second-class citizen. I had never experienced anything quite like that in all my life. It was a feeling I will never forget. The following day, Kevin, a neighbor; came over to speak about mundane events, but I wanted to know more about how he felt about the celebration. We went for a drive to get out of the area, to "clear the air." During the next two hours, although the conversation was extraordinarily illuminating, I found out a lot about what it was like to live in Ballymurphy. He spoke of generational unemployment, of opportunities not available because of your last name, or where you lived. Kevin indicated that applications for work do not require divulging your religion, however, last names tell a tale that soon disqualifies you for any employment opportunities. During the afternoon drive (which occurred on July 12th-Orange Day) we passed through at least six smaller towns that hugged the coast ofNorthem Ireland. Entering these towns graphically portrayed their loyalty to the Crown; we were in the Loyalist (Protestant) part of the world, where Catholics are not invited and not wanted. He asked me about my feelings in light of the overwhelming displays of the Union Jack, the parades, the anti-Catholic slogans and graffiti I remember getting very quiet. I told him that I felt a certain shame and a pain that I could not identify. He responded by only saying "you must be Catholic then." The recent trips I have made to Northern Ireland have dramatically altered my perception of the conflict. However, I feel it noteworthy to mention that I made xi

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every attempt to gather information from both sides of the conflict to substantiate the findings and conclusions I have arrived at in this thesis. I took the time to re-evaluate the data gathered five years previous, and although very valuable, the information I have obtained since has moved me to re-think my positioning on the conflict. I think the opportunity to experience the conflict from a different perspective permitted me to effeCtively weigh the data, to personalize it and re-present it in a way that experientially validates the contents of thiS thesis. The fieldwork I have done in the past three years has produced a greater huri.ger for understanding the nature of social and ethnic conflict. Currently, the situation in Belfast remains in a state of limbo. The lives of those living in Belfast remain unchanged; the Catholic remains unemployable and continues to be the focus of prejudice and discrimination. Conflict is something inevitable, however, the social conditions that are created by people can be changed, if their society desires. Social justice is a cause that needs more champions. The IRA are the champions for the Catholics in the North of Ireland. Although consensus does not exist regarding their methods, they have however, been an effective mechanism in producing significant changes in the lives of Catholics in Belfast. The IRA's "confrontational politics" has moved the British to the negotiating table, thus altering the direction of a society unwilling to acknowledge the rights of all its citizens. I anticipate that not all who read this paper will be in agreement with what I found and concluded. However, I hope that I have provided an opportunity for my reader to be receptive to the implications of my findings. I intend to continue my xii

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research into the issues of social and ethnic conflict in Northern Ireland. The issties that exist in N orthem Ireland are very complex. The issues are not just about being a Catholic or a Protestant. The issues confronting peace negotiators are difficult to due to the ethnic nature of the conflict in conjunction with the socio-economic, political, and historical issues. This conflict represents philosophical, sociological, and religious differences equally as complicated as the current issues in Bosnia, the middle East and Africa. Social and ethnic confiict is something that few fully understand and fewer know how to resolve, but it is a subject that will require greater understanding in the future. xiii

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CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION In July of 1995, I found myselfbeing accompanied to a local bar in the Ballymmphy section ofBelfast, Northern Ireland. Those with me were residents of Ballymmphy, a community that represents the heart of the Catholic Republican movement. The evening was full of questions about and introductions to participants in the Republican freedom movement. The groundwork was being laid for trust. This was my fourth visit in as many years, but this visit became one that would minimize the importance of previous visits, because it was then I would experience first hand what it was like to be a Catholic in Belfast. The visit fell on the heels of the July 12th celebration, in which the Protestants celebrate the conquering of the Catholics in 1695 by marching through the streets ofBelfast (the Orange Day parade). As was the case each year at this time, the air in Belfast was filled with anticipation, fear, hatred, and conflict by those residing in the Catholic sections ofWest Belfast. On the eve of the Orange Day parade the sky was overcast with a slight drizzle of rain. I remember standing in the doorway and watching the illuminated sky, a sky ofbright orange from the numerous bonfires that had been started for this celebration: However, the celebration could only be enjoyed by the Protestants, because the faces of the Catholic residents ofBallymurphy on that night quickly reminded me of the pain and anger they must have been experiencing. The research question addressed in this thesis is why the conflict in Belfast, Northern Ireland continues to this day. This thesis examines some of the causal mechanisms of conflict that have been identified through various literature, the

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thoughts of social scientists who have studied conflict, and ethnographic fieldwork I have carried out over the years. I first became interested in the conflict in Northern Ireland in 1969, shortly after the "troubles" began. To gather information for this thesis I made numerous trips to develop a network of people who would feel comfortable enough with me to divulge their personal feelings and experiences from both the Catholic and Protestant communities in Belfast. The fieldwork represented in this thesis occurred over a period of five years, and especially the last eighteen months when I made two trips. The second chapter of this thesis details the historical perspectives of the conflict that has been on going for the past twenty seven years. "Free Ireland," the chapter title frames a story of the "troubles" utilizing a mural painted on the side of a house. Although history of the conflict in Ireland dates nearly eight hundred years, this thesis focuses on the events of the past twenty seven years. Historical data back to the tum of the century also provide a to current problems. The third chapter of this thesis explores how social science explains conflict. Seminal work in the field of social conflict was done by Marx, Weber, Durkheim, and Simmel. In the late fifties, conflict theorists such as RalfDahrendorf emerged with perspectives on social conflict as social process, as opposed to earlier theorists who focused on social order and structure. Central to Dahrendorfs thesis was the differential distnoution of authority. He maintained that although issues surrounding conflict were more a means of maintaining the status quo, conflict could also lead to change and development. This chapter defines the nature of conflict and provides a definition. Although the word "conflict" often brings to mind social destruction, many social scientists view conflict as a positive, healthy, and socially constructive entity. 2

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"Perspectives of Participants in the Conflict" is the title of the fourth chapter. In this segment of the thesis, political perspectives are examined from both the Catholic and Protestant perspectives. Political changes that have occurred in N orthem Ireland are viewed quite differently by both sides and this chapter identifies the differences that currently exist. The ethnic division that exists in N orthem Ireland has plummeted to depths beyond reach. It is very difficult to separate constitutional views of the Catholic and Protestants due to the complexity of the issues that surround the ethnic conflict. However, the epistemological differences that exist between the Catholics and Protestants are manifested in their respective interpretation of the world around them. The issues at the center of the conflict in N orthem Ireland revolve around equality, self-determination, and justice, but as previously stated each of these issues are viewed quite differently. Chapter five, "Ballymurphy: A Community of Resistance," addresses the lives of those people at the heart of the conflict. The 12,000 residents ofBallymurphy have had to endure battlefield conditions, poor housing, and little opportunity for employment, and yet they have survived. Since the conflict erupted in 1969, they have also had to endure the break-up of families due to imprisonment. Although many years have passed since 1969, this community has developed an intricate network of support that has allowed it to exemplify solidarity and organization. Ballymurphy developed associations directly involved with issues surrounding housing, medical facilities, the handicapped, unemployment, daycare, and banking. Life in areas such as Ballymurphy is far from normal and far from the standards enjoyed by the European community at large. This is a community with tremendous pride and tenacity, a community that has a dream and is willing to continue to struggle until that dream becomes a reality. 3

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The sixth chapter of this thesis, "Conflict Interpretation:Field Analysis," presents information obtained through interviews conducted during my visits to the area. This chapter re-visits the Ballymurphy community and explores what has been done to improve living conditions from those directly involved. In Belfast employment opportunities vary for Catholics and Protestants. Discrimination in areas of employment and housing has been thoroughly documented. Employment and housing opportunities are interpreted quite differently from both sides of the conflict in Belfast. The chapter also re-examines some historical data, revealing the extensive suffering the Catholic population has endured at the hands of the Protestant majority. Although Catholics have been the focal point of attention, the Protestants have experienced what they perceive as a "betrayal" by the British government. Also in this chapter the issue of equality is brought back to the forefront. Once again the interpretations of equality are as different as night and day. The Protestants maintain that discretion should be equally and individually exercised, maintaining the traditions and values that are held by the Protestant majority should be upheld rather than the special agendas created by the Catholics. The final chapter, "Our Day Will Come," reflects on the struggle between the rich and the poor. The conflict in Belfast is a conflict over discrimination, repression and the right to own property. This conflict is also one of interpretation of the past and how the future will be shaped. The violence in Northern Ireland has proven to be an effective and perhaps rational means of achieving a political end. The politics in Northern Ireland have become confrontational politics, but have been effective in providing the Catholics with an improved bargaining position. The chapter concludes by identifying the entrenched interests of the British government and the Protestants, combined with the distribution of authority and social stratification as the root causes 4

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of the violence. The stratification that exists continues to fuel the flames of conflict, and only exacerbates ethnic, religious, and ideological differences. 5

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CHAPTER2. "FREE IRELAND": lllSTORICAL PERSPECTIVES In Belfast, behind what once was a bakery (before an explosion), there stands a row ofhouses on the Falls Road. Painted on the side of a comer house in bright blue are the words "Free Ireland," and a mural dehoerately painted to depict a country tom by conflict and held captive by a foreign government. The mural depicts the country of Ireland (painted green) in the center, surrounded by an orange circle with a white background. In the middle of the picture is an arm shackled and bleeding, clutching a flower. In the four comers of the building are symbolic representations of Irish pride. In one comer of the building is a haxp, in another the symbol of the phoenix, and in other two comers are traditional symbols depicting family crests. At the top of the building, which is pitched at the top, is a portrayal of the center of government for Northern Ireland, Stormont Castle, in flames, and rising from the flames is the Irish Republican Arm.Ys (IRA) phoenix symbol, with the years 1916 and 1990 on either side. The walls in Belfast portray stories of repression, oppression, victory, and defeat, recounting the stories of a people and their struggle against prejudice and discrimination. Current history of the "troubles" in Northern Ireland began in 1969 when the Irish population attempted to mimic the American civil rights movement. The issues were similar in nature: housing, employment, access to education, prejudice and discrimination. In 1969 a civil rights march turned violent, forever changing the face ofBelfast and Northern Ireland. The "war of rights" emerged from the ashes of 1969, with a Catholic population experiencing unemployment of nearly ninety percent in 6

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some areas ofBelfast. Mr. Peter Viggers (Minister at the Northern Ireland Office) stated "it cannot be either fair or reasonable that two and a half times as many Roman Catholics are unemployed as Protestants;" The Catholic population turned to the IRA as the representative voice of the oppressed, seeking a means of political action and retribution. As the "war of rights .. progressed in 1969, the Royal Ulster Constabulary (RUC) was quickly losing control of the general population. Neither the RUC nor any of the special police units had experience or training in handling 11non-violent" demonstrations linked to "civil rights ... When, in, Mid-August 1969 civil demonstrations turned to riots at both Bogside and Belfast, a situation no longer controllable by the police was created. Thus by invitation of the Protestant majority, the British military entered Northern Ireland to end the civil disobedience that had plagued the North oflreland. The presence of the British military intensified, rather than reduced the conflict. By 1970 street violence dramatically increased, escalating from stone throwing, to gasoline bombs, nail bombs, and finally the use of guerrilla warfare techniques such as firearms, car bombs, and incendiary devices. The voice of the Catholic people was now being heard, a voice which matured as it increasingly challenged the RUC and the British military. Robert Moss, in his book Urban Guerrilla. throws into high relief the nature of the challenge posed by the emerging guerrilla organization: To the extent that it (the Provisional IRA) has a long range strategy at all, is to spark off a political crisis in Ulster in order to provoke direct intervention from Westminister or a Protestant backlash so violent that it would lead to outright civil war between the Catholic and Protestant communities and possibly compel the Dublin government to intervene. Provisional spokesman have sometimes discussed these possibilities in ludicrously unrealistic terms. In March 1971, for example, 1

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the Provisionals claimed that they had formed an urban guerrilla force in the North capable of a protracted campaign that would lead to the collapse of the Stormont government and direct rule from Westminster. They prophesied that world opinion would then force the British to hand the province over to the United Nations, which would proceed to divide it into Catholic and Protestant zones. The IRA would follow this up by a program of selective assassinations designed to kill the leaders of the Protestant community, thus clearing the way for the unresisting abso:rption of Ulster into a United hish Republic. The last stages in this IRA scenario are pure fantasy: but it is important to note that the first stage is a very real possibility (Moss: 1971). January 29, 1972 saw the worst confrontation with security forces to date, an incident which galvanized world attention. In that conflict, aptly named "Bloody Sunday," members of a crack British regiment fired wantonly and indiscriminately into a mass of civil demonstrators. Thirteen people were killed. A variety of disputes over responsibility arose regarding whether or not the crowd was armed. Witnesses maintained the shootings were in fact "discriminate" rather than "indiscriminate." At the height of the turmoil in 1972, shootings totaled more than 11,000; bombings in that year reached nearly 2,000; and the death toll for the year stood at nearly 500 people, with 150 of those deaths attributable to British security forces. The British military presence peaked in 1972 with over 22,000 troops. In addition, approximately 6,000 local.people (Protestants) were aiding in the defense of the ,. Ulster province. The RUC had more than 12,000 men, with a budget of over 1. 75 million dollars per day. Since 1969 over 260 members of this organization have been killed, despite the impressive resources of the RUC, the vast majority at the hands of the IRA. British Peace Initiatives Over the past two decades, successive British governments have used every known political tactic to persuade the leaders of the Loyalists (Protestants) to relinquish some of their demands and to accept and participate in the ongoing political 8

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negotiations with the Nationalists. The initiatives proposed by the Nationalists (Catholics) revolve around the principle of"shared power," which means essentially an equal voice in the governing of Northern Ireland. Although disturbing to Loyalists, this principle was adopted by the British government prior to 1985 and is considered part of a political settlement needed to suspend the bloodshed. It was not until Margaret Thatcher took office that any real movement towards resolution of this conflict began. Although firmly opposed to terrorism, the Prime Minister sought consensilal agreement between officials from both sides of the political divide with the introduction of the "Anglo-Irish Agreement." This document, signed on November 15, 1985, was to have introduced peace and stability, combined with reconciliation with the North oflreland. The Anglo-Irish agreement introduced by the Thatcher government was designed to increase political dialogue between the Catholic and Protestant population in an effort to resolve and reduce tension and subsequent acts of terrorism. Certain articles of this agreement address the issue of devolution, which was supported by the Irish government as a to shift responsibility for certain powers to elected representatives. Additionally, issues ofhuman rights, discrimination and the necessity of protecting the identitiesofthe two historical traditions highlighted in this document are of paramount importance. At the heart of the agreement were proposed solutions to social and economic problems that had long plagued the North of Ireland. These included: development of incentive programs to businesses to enhance the economic stability of the community and provide employment for the general population. The British believed that through increased involvement in the peace process they would develop a heightened cognizance of the dilemmas facing N orthem Ireland, better positioning Great Britain to provide greater assistance in the solutions of any potential problems. 9

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The Unionists' (Protestants) perception of this agreement was that was aligned Britain with Republican (Catholic) demands and therefore ultimately placed control of the six counties in Northern Ireland then under British rule (Ulster) in the hands of Dublin, effectively uniting the country. Because Northern Ireland is viewed by the Unionists as a separate country, the prospect of Republican control was a significant threat to their position. The Unionist disagreement with the Anglo-Irish agreement stemmed from the fear oflosing a majority standing in Northern Ireland and three hundred years of de facto union with Great Britain. The potential loss of power and the inability to determine its own sovereignty compelled this faction to take an intransigent stance. The Unionists filed.a lawsuit to block the introduction of unification wording in the AngloIrish agreement. To the delight of the Unionists, Irish supreme court partially legitimized the Unionist stance, by stating "that the two governments merely recognize the situation on the ground in Northern Ireland and form a political judgment about the likely course of future events." This was a partial victory to the Unionists insofar as it removed any language pertainiri.g to reunification. The Republicans' position as stated in Article Two of the agreement reaffirms the language of the Irish constitution, declaring that the "national territory consists of the whole island oflreland" (Coogan 1993) The IRA and Sinn Fein The civil rights movement in Northern Ireland was the catalyst for the resurgence of the IRA. In 1969, the Catholics of Belfast were confronted by British security forces and the RUC during a civil rights demonstration. What resulted was a a battle that for the first time witnessed Catholics standing up for themselves before a superior force over issues of civil rights. Consequently, the Catholic population was forced off the streets and into the arms of the IRA. 10

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The Irish Republican Army is nearly 140 old. The organization, originally called the Irish Republican Brotherhood, was formed by James Stephens and Thomas Clark Luby on St. Patrick's day in 1858. It was formed doe to the social dislocations resulting from famine, widespread unemployment, and migration to the United States. An American counterpart of the Irish Republican Brotherhood called (Clann Na Gael) was born at the same til:p.e. It was formed by John 0' Mahoney. After having been thwarted in numerous military referendums over a period of 70 years, in 1916, the Irish Republican Brotherhood gathered its volunteers numbering nearly 1200, to force militarily the issue ofh()me rule on the British government. In response, the British soldiers easily defeated the Irish Republican Brotherhood on Easter Monday, April24, 1916. Many of those captured were imprisoned; others were able to escape and fled the country. This incident marks the first formal uprising the Irish people attempted (Coogan 1994). The Sinn Fein organization appeared first in 1905, but did not become important politically unti11917. In the constitutional convention of 1917, Sinn Fein drafted a resolution that would allow the Irish people the right to freely choose their own form of government. The remnants ofthe Irish. Republican Brotherhood joined forces with the Sinn Fein organization this same year. In March of 1921, the parliament accepted responsibility for the actions of the newly named and now formally recognized Irish Republican Army. However, in 1922, after a treaty to set up an Irish Free State as a self-governing dominion of Great Britain had been ratified, a group of anti-treaty members of parliament conducted a convention in which a new constitution was drawn up stipulating: The Army shall be known as the Irish Republican Army. It shall be on a purely volunteer Army basis. Its objects shall be: ( 1) to safeguard the honour and maintain the independence ofthe Irish Republic, (2) to protect the rights and hberties common to the people of Ireland, (3) to place its 11

PAGE 25

services at the disposal of an established Republican Government which faithfully upholds the above objects (Coogan1994:23). The position of the Irish Republican Army since its inception in 1916 has been one of sustained resistance and implacable hostility toward the British. The Irish Republican Army maintains that its moral position to engage in warfare is based on: (I) the right to resist foreign aggression, (2) the right to revolt against tyranny and oppression, and finally (3) the direct lineal succession with the provisional government of 1916, the first parliament of 1919, and the second parliament of 1921. The strategy employed by the Irish Republican Army is one of created resistance, channeled into both active and passive support in an effort to stop any isolation methods incorporated by the British government. The aspect of actively seeking support locally, nationally, and internationally is perhaps one of the reasons this organization has and continues to be so effective in its struggle against the British government. Groups that have support within and from the outside can continue to wage the war they want, and do so quite effectively. The artist painted "Free Ireland" on the side of the house on the Falls Road, but peace can only be achieved once the causes of the conflict have been addressed. In this scenario, where the conflict is political, peace is only attainable through a political process and stibsequent political solution. The conflict in Northern Ireland is a result of centuries of refusal by the British government to acknowledge Northern Irelands right to national independence and se}f:.determination. The position of the IRA and Sinn Fein is that Irelands right to reunification, independence, and sovereignty as well as the right to self-determination be realistically appraised under international law. In numerous covenants recognized by the United Nations the issue of self-determination is clearly stated in Article One of each covenant, stating: "all peoples have the right to self-determination. By virtue of that 12

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right they determine their economic, social and cultural development" (Adams 1994). Everyone involved in current peace negotiations who claims to be actively seeking a permanent peace must embrace the universally accepted principles of self. determination. Gerry Adams, in his book Free Ireland states: Self-determination is accepted to mean a nations right to exercise the political freedom to determine its development without external influence and without partial or total disruption of national unity or tenitorial integrity. The refusal to allow the Irish people to exercise their right to self.determination has been British government policy. That policy is the root cause of conflict in Ireland. Furthermore, that policy and the measures taken to maintain it are the cause of the ruptures in relationships between the Irish people themselves, and between Ireland and Britain (Adams 1994:171). The political conflict in Northern Ireland, resulting from the partitioning of the country, has created social and economic problems that ha:ve spelled disaster for those in modest to lower end employment positions. Demographically, Northern Ireland is 5,469 square miles (see map, pg16) and supports a population of 1,577,836 people. The industry sector of the six counties employs approximately 34,000 in the engineering-and ship building, with another 10,400 being employed in the textiles. The food and drink industry ofNorthern Ireland manages to employ approximately . 22,000 people, with other smaller industries (self-employed) picking up the remainder (those employed in agriculture were not accounted for in the latest census survey of the workforce). The partitioning of the six counties in the north has led to widespread job discrimination, and exorbitant expenditures on security measures. The separation of the North from the Republic (South) has created a state of external dependency, resulting in industrial underdevelopment and emigration, while at the same time creating poverty that exceeds European levels. if peace is to be achieved in Northern Ireland, the long standing conflict that exists between the Republicans (Catholics) and the Loyalists (Protestants) must be 13

PAGE 27

settled. This can only be accomplished through constructive dialogue and focused debate over the issues that have created the conflict. While both sides of the accord recognize the stumbling blocks to a successful peace process, it is vital that there be created a new concept in the political arena in Northern Ireland, to promote a win-win scenario. Demilitarization is recognized By both Great Britain and Northern Ireland as a necessary first step towards the. achievement of a lasting peace in Northern Ireland. However, it is important to note that the British army entered Northern Ireland in 1969, not in response to paramilitary activity by the IRA, but to assist in a political and security crisis created by the Loyalists (Protestants) in direct response to the civil rights movement of the late sixties. The following passage is quoted from "Poblacht na hEireann," the Provincial Government of the Irish Republic: "Irishmen and Irishwomen: In the name of God and the dead generations from which she receives her old tradition of nationhood, Ireland, through summons her children to her flag and strikes for her freedom. Having organised and trained her manhood through her secret revolutionary organisation, the Irish Republican Brotherhood, and through her open military organisations, the Irish Volunteers and the Irish Citizen Army, having patiently perfected her discipline, having resolutely waited for the right moment to reveal itself: she now seizes that moment and, supported by her exiled children in America and by gallant allies in Europe, but relying in the first on her own strength, she strikes in full confidence of victory. We declare the right of the people of Ireland to the ownership of Ireland and to the unfettered control of Irish destinies, to be sovereign and indefeasible. The long usurpation of that right by a foreign people and government has not extinguished the right, nor can it ever be extinguished except by the destruction of the Irish people. In every generation the Irish people have asserted their right for national freedom 14

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and sovereignty: six times during the past three hundred years they have asserted it in arms. Standing on the fundamental right and again it in arms in the face of the world, we hereby proclaim the Irish Republic as a Sovereign Independent State, and we pledge our lives and the lives of our comrades-in-arms to the cause of its freedom, of its welfare and of its exahation among the nations. The Irish Republic is entitled to, and hereby claims, the allegiances of every Irishman and Irishwoman. The Republic guarantees religious and civil liberty, equal rights and equal opportunities to all its citizens, and declares its resolve to pursue the happiness and prosperity of the whole nation andallofits parts, cherishing all the children of the nation equally, and oblivious of the differences, carefully fostered by an alien government, which have divided a minority from the inajority in the past. Until our arms have brought the opportune moment for the establishing of a permanent national Government, representative of the whole people of Ireland, and elected by the suffrages of all her men and women, the Provisional Government, hereby constituted, will administer the civil and military affairs of the Republic in trust for the people. We place the cause of the Irish Republic under the protection of the Most High God, Whose blessing we invoke upon our arms, and we pray that no one who serves that cause will dishonor it by cowardice, inhumanity or rapine. In this supreme hour the Irish nation must, by its own valour and discipline, and by the readiness of its children to sacrifice themselves for the common good, prove itself worthy of the august destiny to which it is called .. (Adams 1994:207). Signed on behalf of the Provisional Government Thomas J. Clarke Sean MacDiarmada P.H Pearse Janmes Connolly Thomas MacDonagh Eamonn Ceannt Joseph Plunkett "Free Ireland" is a wall in Belfast, a message to the world and its people. The walls in Belfast represent much more than picturesque mural accomplishments: they represent a country tom apart politically, socially, economically, and ideologically. The walls in Belfast depict a charge, a challenge, a warning, and a plea for peace. 15

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miles 0 20 30 20 30 40 lmeters NORTIIERN IRELAND .,. I I Dungiven \. ANTRIM V""') e c.;. Ballymena DERRY \ Strabane \. __ ""'\ NORTIIERN IRELAND ,:' Magherafelt : \ Cookstown ?rv' I Aughnacloy ) f Portadown ) eArmagh 16 .. N t . IRISH SEA ;

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CHAP1ER3 THEORIES OF CONFLICT 1bis chapter explores how social scientists explain conflict. I work toward an understanding of the conflict found in N orthem Ireland. Conflict is a word generally associated with social destructiveness, however, many social scientists view conflict as socially transformative and partially constructive. Conflict is an essential element of progressive change. Marxist-based thought is viewed as negative if it fails to produce social change. From a structural . functionalist's perspective, the opposite applies: conflict is only viewed in a positive light if it contributes to social order, and negatively if social order is destroyed. Some ofthe earliest work done in the area of social conflict by anthropologists was shaped by such thinkers as Marx, Weber, Durkheim, and Simmel, who at that time were strongly influenced by structural functionalism The structural functionalist, RadcliffeBrown; maintained that structure consisted of a network of . social relations and.institutions that together comprised the framework of society. Function, on the other hand, acted as the stabilizing vehicle for social relationships within society. In the past three decades, structural-functionalism has largely fallen out of favor in social science. The primary critique is that it is "monolithic" in its approach to issues of social conflict, social change and social stability. However, social scientist Mark Abrahamson (1978) argued that structural-functionalism was not monolithic in its approach to conflict, citing: ( 1) individualistic functionalism, which focuses on the needs of actors as well as structures that emerge as functional responses to those needs; (2) interpersonal functionalism, focusing on social 17

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relationships, and in particular the mechanisms to accommodate strains that exist in relationships; (3) societal functionalism, which focuses on large scale social structures and institutions of society, their interrelationships, and their constraining or liberating effects on actors. Sluka points out since the late fifties and early sixties anthropological interest in issues of social conflict tended to focus on national h"beration struggles, as well as the conflicts associated with the decolonization of third world countries (Sluka 1992). Conflict theorists such as RalfDahrendorfintroduced a perspective that emphasized social conflict and social process as opposed to social order and social structure. Although Dahrendorfs approach was argued and contested by those remaining in the structural-functionalist camp, his approach in combination with structure and process became widely accepted. Dahrendorf focused on the processes of social change. Where functionalism emphasized orderliness, conflict theorists saw the dissension and conflict within the social system Dahrendorf chose to emphasize the role of power in maintaining order in society: "society had two distinct faces (conflict and consensus) and that sociological theory should be divided into two parts, conflict theory and consensus theory. Consensus theorists should examine value integration in society, and conflict theorists should examine conflicts of interest and the coercion that holds society together in the face of these stresses" (Dahrendorf 1968:268). Dahrendor: although heavily influenced by structural functionalism, noted that functionalism focused on voluntary cooperation or general consensus as the glue that held society together, as opposed to the "enforced constraint" that conflict theorists maintain. Central to Dahrendorfs conflict thesis was that "differential distribution of authority invariably becomes the determining factor of systemic social conflicts" (1959:165). Dahrendorffelt that issues surrounding conflict were more 18

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than a means to mamtain the status quo; he maintained that conflict also led to change and development as well Dahrendorfmaintained that once conflict groups emerge, the action they engage in leads to changes in social structure. When conflict is intensified, the changes that occur are radical. When change is accomplished by violence, structural change will be sudden. Whatever the nature of conflict, we must be acutely aware of the relationship between conflict and change as well as that between conflict and the status quo. What is the nature of social conflict? How can it be defined? Conflict is considered a cultural universal that varies in form and content, intensity and even the general meaning from one society to another. From the perspective of anthropology, Lewis Coser provides the following definition: social conflict is a "struggle over value$ and claii:ns to status, power, and scarce resources, in which the aims ofthe conflicting parties are not only to ga.ln the desired values, but also to neutralize, injure, or eliminate their rivals. Social conflict involves a test of power between antagonistic parties, and while such conflict may include violence, other more subtle but equally significant forms of conflict exist as well (Coser 1968:232). Anthropologists typically view conflict as a cultural phenomenon. It has been maintained that culture cannot be separated from the issue of conflict, due in part to the cultural factors that give rise to or support conflict. "Conflict relations are objectified, developed, maintained, expressed, or camouflaged by means of symbolic forms and patterns of symbolic action-that is, by symbolism or culture (a complex system of symbolic meanings)" (Sluka 1992:24). Approaching conflict from a cultural perspective requires referencing the norms, values, ideologies, and the collective world view held by the participants of society. 19

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As noted, many social scientists view conflict as a positive, necessary, healthy, or constructive. Simmel was the first to pursue and consequently promulgate the duality of conflict when he stated: "Actual society does not result only :from. .. social forces which are positive (integrating), and only to the extent that the negative factors do not hinder them. This common conception is quite superficial: Society ... is the result ofboth categories of interaction (positive and negative or integrating and disintegrating), which thus manifest themselves as wholly positive" (Simmel1955: 16). Coser argued that it would be incorrect to make distinctions between "system and power conflict models of society." Coser maintained that: The analysis of social conflicts brings to awareness aspects of social reality that may be obscured if analytical attention focuses too exclusively on phenomena of social order; but exclusive attention to conflict phenomena may obscure the central importance of social order and needs to be corrected by a correlative concern with the ordered aspects of social life. We deal here not with distinct realities but only with differing aspects of the same reality, so that exclusive emphasis on one or the other is likely to lead the analyst astray. Perhaps we need return now to Charles Horton Cooley's statement: The more one thinks of it the more he will see that conflict and co-operation are not separable things, but phases of one process which always involves something ofboth (Coser 1968:235-236). Conflict can and has contnouted to social stability, order, and the maintenance of the status quo, as well as to social disequilibrium and change. From a Marxist perspective on conflict, class conflict is the central mechanism for progressive social change. The tension between conflict and stability within society is the stimulus for change and progress, however, when conflict resolution is unattainable through normal channels, opposing factions are .confronted with the opportunity to either create new resolution strategies in order to resolve the conflict or devise a way in which to avoid a recurrence. 20

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Is it possible to view the conflict in Northern Ireland as an effective means to achieve a political end? Nieburg, the author ofPolitical Violence. observed that violent tactics employed in the politics of confrontation were highly effective in achieving political ends through the creation ofbetter bargaining positions (Nieburg 1969). Nieburg went on to point out that preferential tactics of"working through the establishment" were by and large unsuccessful or at least less effective than confrontational politics. He suggested that in class society, powerful and dominant groups are not willing participants in the relinquishment of their positions of power and advantage. Seldom, if ever, have those in power been persuaded to change through any moral persuasion or argument that would seemingly undermine their position. "Social stratification leads to such conflict-inducing factors as ethnic, religious, and ideological discrimination; socioeconomic deprivation; political inequality and its correlates such as infringement of rights, injustice, and oppression; the absence of effective channels ofpeace:ful or systemic resolution of grievances and conflicts; and, of course, exploitation and alienation" (Sluka 1992:31). If the author is correct in his assessment of stratified societies, then we cannot hope to alleviate those causes without a dramatic alteration of the structure itself Berreman ( 1977) states that: Present trends suggest a worldwide polarization in access to power, privilege and resources-the gap between the "haves" and the "have nots" increases with a diminishing willingness among the poor to continue to suffer deprivation, and among the wealthy to ameliorate it. The disparities must be ended, and inevitably will be, by conflict if not by accommodation. It would be to the advantage of everyone that it be done graciously, quickly and well, lest it occur brutally, perhaps by holocaust (Berreman 1977:236). 21

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Conflict is an inevitability however social conditions are created. What can be created can also be changed. By altering the conditions in which a society lives in and under, the issues that create conflict and its violent manifestations will cease to become a tool of political recourse to those in a disadvantaged position. It has been argued that no society is ever unstratified, or totally classless. Stratification is a functional necessity. For Marx, social classes rose out of acts of production; people came to reifY classes, and as a result classes developed a life of their own that constrained the individual "actor." Max Weber, on the other hand, felt that society was stratified on the basis of economics, status, and power. A "class" is a group of people, whose shared societal situation defined by their role in an economic system was the basis for action by the group as a whole. Weber contends that a "class situation exists when three conditions are met: (1) a number of people have in common a specific causal component of their life chances, in so far as (2) this component is represented exclusively by economic interests in the possessions of goods and opportunities for income, and (3) is represented under the conditions of the commodity or labor markets" (Weber 1921/1968:927). classes exist in the realm of economics, and status eXists in the social realm, for Weber, parties could only be found in the political arena. Parties were always viewed as structures struggling for dominion. Parties are the most organized elements of Weber's stratification system Generally, for Weber, parties represented class/status groups. Whatever they represent, parties are oriented to the attainment of power. Weber defined domination as "the probability that certain specific commands (or all commands) will be obeyed by a given group of persons" (Weber 1921/1968:212). While domination possessed both legitimacy and illegitimacy, the focus ofWeber's attention was on the legitimate forms of domination, which he referred to as authority. 22

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Directly linking parallel development of rationalized science, law, politics, art, literature; universities, and polity, Weber provides a framework for understanding some of the root causes of the conflict in Northern Ireland. In an examination of countries with mixed religious systems, Weber discovered the leaders of the economic system, the business leaders, owners of capital, high grade skilled labor, and more advanced technically and commercially trained personnel were overwhelmingly Protestant. appears to have been a significant cause in the choice of these occupations and conversely, other religions (Catholics) failed to create ideational systems that would cause individuals to gravitate towards those vocations. What Protestantism succeeded in doing was to tum the pursuit of profit into a moral crusade. Max Weber tied the religious doctrine of predestination, which identified whether a person was a member of God's community and therefore guaranteed a place in heaven or not, to .the emerging capitalist system. Those individuals who worked hard and pursued the capitalist agenda would experience the signs of salvation, which were to be found in economic success. Calvinism (Protestantism) provided the rising capitalist with a labor force of sober, conscientious, and unusually industrious workmen who would cling to their work as being the will of God. With a workforce that was dedicated to the fulfillment of economic success, the capitalist was in a position to raise the level of exploitation of those unsaved to unprecedented heights. The Protestantism of the workforce (Calvinists) further legitimized social inequality by giving the capitalist the comforting assurances that the unequal d.istnbution of the goods of this world was a special dispensation of divine providence. Weber was inclined to see the study of the causes of social phenomena within the realm ofhistory. One issue that became critical to Weber's studies was the issue 23

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. of causality, simply put, the probability that an event would be followed or accompanied by another event. Weber felt that a researcher had to look at the reasons, as well as the meanings of: historical changes. Because of this, Weber was very clear on the issue of multiple causality in his study of the relationship between Protestantism and the spirit of capitalism Weber simply maintained that the Protestant work ethic was one of the causal factors in the rise of modem capitalism Dahrendorf suggested that the differential distn'bution of authority will invariably be the determinant of social conflict. With the emergence of conflict groups, the social structure of a society is bound to change, and as the level of conflict intensifies, so too does the level of radical behavior. "Social conflict is a struggle over values and claims to status, power, and scarce resources, in which the aim of the conflicting parties are not only to gain the desired values, but also to neutralize, injure, or eliminate their rivals" (Coser 1968:232). Weber would contend that at the heart of conflict are issues of multiple causalties that need to be addressed, and that is the case in Northern Ireland. Jefferey Sluka maintained social stratification led to conflict inducing factors such as ethnic, religious, and ideological discrimination. Stratification is also tied to socioeconomic deprivation and political inequality, which has led to civil rights infringements, injustice and oppression. In this chapter, I have discussed what some notable social scientists think about conflict. But what do the participants and close observers of the conflict think? The residents of Belfast who are involved in the day to day conflict have very strong ideas about what is occurring and why. The struggle in Belfast is between the rich and the poor, they say, but it is more than a struggle over work, property rights, prejudice, and discrimination. In Belfast and all of the North of Ireland the struggle involves the appropriation of symbols, a conflict of ideological interpretation, and a 24

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contentious effort to give partisan meaning to local history. This is the subject of the following chapter. 25

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CHAPTER4 PERSPECTIVES OF PARTICIPANTS IN THE CONFLICT This chapter takes a close look at the political changes that have occurred in Northern Ireland. The views ofboth Catholics and Protestants are examined. In Northern Ireland, it is very difficult to separate political issues from constitutional issues due to the complexity of the issues that surround the ethnic conflict. This can be observed in the differences that exist between Catholics and Protestants in their respective views of the world around them "SHANKILL----NO-SURRENDER": PerS]ectives ofLoyalists (Protestants) "We need to create a system of government, an identity and a nationality to which both sections of the community can aspire. We must look for the common denominator. The only common denominator that the Ulster people have, whether they be Catholic or Protestant, is that they are Ulsterman. And that is the basis from which we should build the new life for the Ulster people, a new identity for them Awaken them to their new identity. That they are different. That they're not second-class Eng]ishrnen but first-class Ulstermen. And thats where my loyalty is" (Barr 1994: 102). John McMichael, a spokesman for the Ulster Defense Authority (UDA) found that although there is a tremendous dislike for the English and the government of Westminster, there stills exists for the Crown. In his opinion, therefore, it would be sensible and natural to assume that Catholics would readily accept the independence that would be guaranteed within the structure ofthe European Economic Community (EEC) and the Commonwealth in general .. In 1987, amongst the political protests, the 26

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civil disorder, and the increased assassinations then being experienced, the UDA announced their opposition to majority rule in heland as well as some form of formal power sharing. Instead, the UDA proposed "proportionality" in government, suggesting that positions would be created or allocated on the basis of proportional votes. What we propose Will probably be descnoed by some as idealistic, ambitious, fraught with difficulties and even dangerous to attempt, but then so has anything that was ever worth doing. The most dangerous thing to do, and unfortunately the most politically popular, would be to do nothing (Bruce 1994:104) The fear of the Loyalists is the removal or voluntary departure of the British. It is generally felt that it is only a matter of time before the British actually leave. The fear is that they will be unable to defend themselves once the British pull out. There is general consensus that withdrawal is imminent and that they will have to fight for an independent Ulster. Paralleling the IRA's agenda, the UDA's commitment to a democratic peace process is secondary to the pursuit of ethnic interests. The Loyalists present their case as worthy due in part of the desire of the "majority .. within the six counties in Ulster to remain under British rule. Although not opposed to a devolved administrative structure, the Loyalists are willing to entertain any governmental structure that will prevent the 11tyranny of the majority," yet seem unwilling to accept any "division" of power that will guarantee an equal say in government by Catholics and Protestants. Shared power is rejected on the basis that is violates the basis of liberal, vote based democracy, and it does not represent the views of many Ulster Catholics who do not want a unified Ireland: Though there is disapproval of the measures taken by the IRA and its acts of violence, as well as the 11anti-Catholic11 rhetoric of the evangelicals, involvement of the government ofDublin is considered out of the question. What becomes 27

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fundamentally important is to realize that the Protestants in Northern Ireland have been there for many generations, view themselves as British, and are vehemently opposed to the threats to their British citizenship. The fear created in those of Loyalist persuasion could be descnoed as the British government deciding that it no longer wants to or is willing to protect its citizens in their empire from those who would want to annex its territory for its own use. There is increasingly widespread belief that the British government is intentionally directing resources and policies to benefit the Republican minority. The threatened loss ofBritish support has strengthened Loyalist resolve to maintain a Northern Ireland that remains in British control The Protestants widely believe that a unified Ireland would create a governmental structure that would be controlled by the Catholic population. Protestants maintain that unattentive British treatment of the Loyalist position has diminished their sense of being 11British ., It has, however, dramatically increased their individual sense of being 11Ulster Loyalists ., In the 1970's and the 1980's, two major political milestones were achieved in Northern Ireland: the Sunningdale power-sharing agreement of 1974 and the AngloIrish accord of 1985. Under the Sunningdale agreement, power was to be shared by people who were only minor representatives of political parties. What this amounted to was representation of one's own ethnic group. To Loyalists the Anglo-Irish accord of 1985 was an agreement between two liberal democracies, which approached Northern Ireland's problem not in terms of rights and privileges ofthe individual but in terms of collectivities. As noted by numerous Loyalists, it is quite clear that one of the consequences of any redistn'butive social policy has been strategically desigii.ed to further alienate the Loyalist position in Northern Ireland. This positioning by the Westminster government struck an emotional chord in the hearts of the Loyalists, sounding the inevitable consequence of the divisional restructuring in each of the 28

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Northern provinces. Citing any initiative that was designed (for example) to ameliorate poverty, unemployment, housing issues, would automatically be regarded by one side as insufficient and by the other as entirely too generous. Loyalists view the political changes that have occurred in Northern Ireland in the past years as having been designed to induce Catholic support for the British government. As a consequence Loyalist opposition has been galvanized. Loyalists have concluded that the ethnic divisions that exist in Northern Ireland have now plummeted to depths beyond reach. The question has been asked of an alternative approach to the problems that exist in Northern Ireland, that of merely assuming one position and holding to that decision. However, in light of recent activity, the IRA does not appear likely to accept the invitation of John Major's Westminster's parliament and renounce violence. Loyalists suggest that the British government could call a halt to any further speculation about the constitutional position of Northern Ireland. Loyalist often revert to the discussion of the British government's .. guarantee .. to the Loyalists in Northern Ireland, and the difficulties surrounding the explanation of why these promises were not reciprocal between both Catholics and Protestants. Loyalists cite the 1973, Northern Ireland Constitution Act: It is hereby declared that Northern Ireland remains part of Her Majesty's Dominions and of the United Kingdom, and it is hereby affirril.ed that in no event will Northern Ireland or any part of it cease to be part ofHer Majesty's Dominions and of the United Kingdom without the consent of the majority of the people ofNorthern Ireland voting in a poll held for that purpose (Bruce 1994:67). In the early days of the 11troubles11 in Northern Ireland, the assertion by the British that Northern Ireland would remain British as long as the majority wanted had the appearance of a solid promise. Therefore the Loyalists had little concern or fear 29

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that anything would ever undermine that policy. In 1985 the Loyalists were again encouraged by the language contained in the AngloIrish accord with reference to the positioning of the British government on the status of Northern Ireland and the majority will of the people. In recent years, the increase in the proportion of the Catholic population in Northern Ireland has been threatening. Ian Paisley, a Loyalist/Unionist leader, concedes that the Catholic population could increase to majority status in the next thirty years. The question that now faces all of those considered Loyalists, is "What if the Catholics voted to leave the United Kingdom?" The AngloIrish accord created a framework within which the Loyalists now interpret every salient event in their world. This accord is an example that generates concern among Loyalists because it includes govemmental pressure to redistribute resources from the Protestant areas ofBelfast to the Catholic seCtions. The accord also legislated fair-employment practices, and addressed concerns regarding there routing away from Catholic neighborhoods of the Orange parade on July 12th that celebrates the conquering of Ireland. Loyalist interpretation of this intervention is that it represents Dublin's successful attet;npt to dictate to an4 govern the North through the Westminster government of John Major. As a consequence ofthese perceptions, the Loyalists now want the Anglo-Irish accord scrapped and all the links that exist between the North and the South of Ireland reduced to those appropriate to those governing the relations between between two entirely separate states. They allege that this was promised in 1925 by both the Irish and British governments but never fulfilled. It is also important to the Loyalist position that Articles 2 and 3 from the 1937 constitution of the Republic of Ireland be removed. Article 1 states; "The Irish nation hereby affirms its inalienable, indefeasible, and sovereign right to choose its own form of government, to determine its own relations with other nations, and to develop its life, economic, and in accordance with its own genius 30

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and traditions ... Article 2 states: 11The national territory consists of the whole island of Ireland, its islands and the territorial seas ., The Loyalists see Dublins claim to the North not merely as symbolic, but as the root cause of and the sustaining force behind the violence that exists in Northern Ireland. Loyalists maintain that so long as the Republic of Ireland asserts ownership ofNorthern Ireland, the IRA will continue its pursuit of unification. To the Loyalists it is one thing to explain the nature of the Northern Ireland 11troubles11 as an 11ethnic conflict... It is, however, something entirely different to attempt to provide hope for any resolution. Bruce depicts the rather dismal tone of the Loyalists position in Northern Ireland in this way: What has been correctly 'imderstood by both Republicans and Loyalists, but overlooked by analysts and successive Westminster governments, is that there is no Northern Ireland 11problem.11 The word 11problem11 suggests that there is a solution; some outcome which will please a1most everybody more than it displeases a1most everybody. Conflict is a more accurate term for relationships in Northern Ireland. Conflicts have outcomes, not solutions. Somebody wins and somebody loses (1994: 147). The Loyalists assert that attempts at solving or reducing the deep ethnic divisions that exist will likely go in one of two directions: acceptance of existing ethnic fault lines as they currently exist merely 11back:ing a side .. or, more theoretically, attempts to engineer social circumstances that will reduce the salience of ethnic identification. At present and for the foreseeable future, Northern Ireland will remain in the hands of the Protestant majority, who are all primarily Loyalists/Unionists. It is difficult to separate constitutional views of the Republicans and the Loyalists from the very complex issues that surround the ethnic conflict that exists in Northern Ireland. However, Loyalists contend that doing the will of the majority can only lead one to become a unionist rather than a nationalist. 31

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In Belfast, the visions of how the world and society should be are entirely subjective. To the Catholic Republican, the world in which they exist is one of perceived discrimination, oflost opportunity, and a vision that lacks hope. This is due, in part, to the way in which they view themselves. On the other hand, the Protestant Loyalists have an entirely different view of the world, one which arises from a majority role, of opportunity, of financial stability. Social visions are very important in a number of ways. It is obvious that social policies created by those in the majority have consequences that spread throughout the society and can reverberate over years and effect generations of people. Social vision establishes thought as providing a context for action. The social visions that each group possesses fill the void of knowledge for each individual as acquired in their individual context. Social causation in Belfast is conceived very differently, referring to the mechanics of social causation and the manifested results. As previously mentioned, Loyalist author Steve Bruce referred to the situation in N orthem Ireland as a "conflict," indicating that conflicts have outcomes, not solutions. A solution can be achieved only when it is no longer necessary to make a trade-off: regardless of whether or not the solution entailed costs in the past. The ultimate goal of achieving a solution in society is in fact what justifies the initial sacrifice or any of the transitional conditions previously considered unacceptable. The ramifications of conflicting Republican and Loyalist visions extend to politics, economics, religion, justice, and philosophy in general, thus far preventing any solution from becoming reality. Ifhuman options within society are not constrained, then the very presence of such repugnant manifestations such as war, crime, and poverty openly demand an explanation, and consequently a solution. While those in society that have an 32

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unconstrained vision will openly seek the causes of war, poverty, and crime, those that are constrained in their vision seek the special causes of peace, wealth, or a law abiding society. The Republican vision is unconstrained. As such there are not any intractable reasons for social evils and therefore no reason why there cannot be a solution to what ails society in general However, in the Loyalist constrained vision, whatever artifices or strategies restrain or ameliorate social problems have significant costs attached, some asSUIIling the form of other social ills; making a solution impossible and only a prudent trade-off as the end result. The constrained vision is a tragic vision of the human condition. The unconstrained vision is a moral vision ofhuman intentions, which are viewed as ultimately decisive. The unconstrained vision promotes pursuit of the highest ideals and the best solutions. By contrast, the constrained vision sees the best as the enemy of the good--a vain attempt to reach the unattainable being seen as not only futile but often counterproductive, while the same efforts could have produced a viable and beneficial trade-o:ff(Sowell1988: 33). For Loyalists, the social processes in Belfast are not defined in terms of intent or attainable goals. Instead they are referred to in terms of systematic characteristics deemed necessary to contribute to those goals, such things as 11property rights,., .,free enterprise,., or the ., constitution." The goals of the Republicans and the goals of the Loyalists are not just different goals, but they relate to different things. The voices of the Republicans speak of desired results. The Loyalists speak in terms of process characteristics conducive to desired results that are accepted as a trade-off: not a solution. The issues at the center of the conflict in Belfast revolve around equality, self: determination, and justice, but each of these objectives or goals is viewed quite differently from the eyes of the Republican and the eyes of the Loyalists. The Loyalists view the issues of :freedom, justice, and equality as a "process" 33

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characteristic, and the Republicans view the issues in terms of "results". Edmund Burke in the eighteenth century demonstrated what may be an example of the problems that exist in Belfast when he stated, "all men have equal rights; but not to equal things." Milton Friedman further exemplified the focus of a constrained vision by stating: A society that puts equality--in the sense of equality of outcome --ahead of freedom will end up with neither equality nor freedom The use of force to achieve equality will destroy freedom, and the force, introduced for good purposes, will end up in the hands of people who use it to promote their own interests (Friedman 1980:148). When the term equality is phrased "equality of opportunity" or "equality before the law," there are two very different meanings. For the Republican movement, application of the same criteria to those who possess wealth, education, opportunity and cultural orientation would only negate the meaning of the word "equality." Republican interpretation of equal opportunity equates to equalized probabilities of achievement. This achievement applies to areas of education, employment opportunities, and in the courts of Northern Ireland. To achieve this it might become necessary to provide a form of compensatory advantage in the form of social programs, employment preference, educational programs, and some form of legal assistance. The delicate relationship between equality and freedom in Northern Ireland is viewed from two entirely different vantage points. The Republicans see equality and freedom not as conflict but as political and economic democracy. The Loyalists, on the other hand, see this as a process with major conflicts between permitting freedom of individual action and prescnl>ing equality of social results. In Northern Ireland, the debate is not over the degree of equality, but over exactly what is to be equalized. Loyalists maintain that discretion should be equally and individually exercised as much as possible, influenced by the traditions of the 34

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union and maintaining the values that have been derived from the widely shared experience of the collective, rather than the special articulation of the few. The Republicans, on the other hand, maintain the material conditions oflife should be equalized and supervised by those who possess the intellectual and moral standing to make the well-being of all of society their concern. The administration of power in social decision-making has historically been central to the Republican movement. Much of what goes on in a society is explained through the exertion of power, whether in the realm of the political, economic, or military arena, and consequently is of great concern to the Republican movement. Conflicting visions of the role ofpowerare involved in a wide spectrum of issues. Power in the sense of direct force and violence is involved not only in issues of war and peace but also in issues of crime and-punishment. Political power and its efficacy are also storm centers in the conflict of visions. The existence, magnitude, and effectiveness of various economic and social powers are also seen very differently by the two visions (Sowell1988: 142). "VICTORY TO THE PROVISIONAL IRA": Pers_pectives ofRwublicans (Catholics) Unionism requires a one-party state and requires the suppression of significant opposition. It has not only failed to become engaged even within the confines of the state in power-sharing, it has also failed absolutely to come to terms with the simple human proposition that the man or woman down the road has an equal right too, an equal right to job opportunities and an equal right to housing (Adam's 1994: 94). In Belfast, Irish Republicanism is synonymous with those dispossessed and seeking the equality taken from them many years ago. The reappropriation oflost rights comes with a cost--those that have deprived others of their rights, have appropriated those rights for themselves, recognize the only way in which equality can be achieved is through the loss of the privileged position they have assumed. The 35

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world witnessed a similar situation in South Africa, where the Black population wanted to achieve equality within their own country, where power rested with the White population. For equality to occur, it became necessary for the White population to surrender some of its power to the Blacks in order to achieve a balance. The very same balance of power is in Belfast, where the power structure for the six counties in the north are in the hands of the Protestant majority. The Protestant majority represent the antiquated British colonial system that does not divide the country by color, but rather; by religious affiliation. In Northern Ireland, with the partitioning of the six counties, the British government was provided the opportunity to extend its belief system to a minority population. The establishment of the six col.Dlties with boundaries designed to provide a permanent loyal majority with a Protestant parliament for the Protestant people, assured the stability of the partitioned counties. With the establishment of a Protestant state, Loyalism began to identify and project those qualities belonging to "Protestants" and those that belong to "Catholics." In Max Weber's "The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism," Weber found that the leaders of the economic system, the business leaders, the owners of capital, the high skilled labor, and more technically advanced and commercially tramed personnel in the workforce were overwhelmingly Protestant. Weber interpreted this to mean that Protestantism was a significant cause in the choice of the occupations, which could imply that other religions somehow failed to create an ideational system capable of causing individuals to gravitate to those vocations. In essence, Protestantism was successful in developing its pursuit of profit into a moral crusade. Issues of equity and justice are of vital importance in the Republican movement. The creation of a pluralistic society that protects individual rights, and 36

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provides equal opportunity for success and equality in both voting rights and representation are issues that are regarded as sacred within the movement. Republicans do not propose the amalgamation of the two statelets (sic) into a thirty-two county Free State. What republicans are talking about is political representatives of Irish people sitting down without outside interference and deciding what kind of society suits all our interests. I happen to support, although I am Catholic, the creation of a secular society, a society which is run in the interests of all its citizens, a pluralistic society which is structured in such a way as to reflect differing traditions and which is shaped by the aspirations of all its citizens. In other words, a state which would unite the whole people of Ireland, to abolish the memory of past dissensions and to substitute the common name of Irish person in place of the denominations ofProtestant, Catholic and dissenter ... (Adams 1994:103). What the Republican movement hopes to achieve with the Loyalists is simply equality. This would in_clude restructuring the decision making to include the interests of all those in Northern Ireland. The Republican movement wants to establish a system by which the real problems that exist can be dealt with, within a legislature that is truly representative of the people, reflective of its needs, and one that will guarantee individual hoerty. In its current form, Catholics do not have equality within the six counties in the north. The very nature and history of the six counties is ample evidence of that. Equality with Great Britain is also imposSiole at this time, due in part (regardless of political differences) to the second class stratification experienced by the Catholic population of Ireland. It is maintained within the movement that the only way in which equality can be achieved is through the control of its own destiny. Gerry Adams, President of the Sinn Fein organization, urges Protestants to be encouraged and recognize the commonality that exists within the population of Northern Ireland. They should be encouraged to look at the proud traditions of Protestant participation in the democratic pursuit of an Irish people in search of self: government. Adams urges all those ofNorthern Ireland, including the Protestants, to 37

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hear voices of those leaders that are desperately searching for the voice of reason and sanity. Gerry Adams states that what Ireland needs the most at this juncture is a "De Klerk" to bring them and us into the next century. It is important to note that in every Westernized country, the issue of self-determination has been a significant issue at one time. In N orthem Ireland, the very same issue of self-determination remains of pivotal importance and the Republican movement maintains that it is fundamental that all people have the right to national self-determination. The duality of interests that exist within government structures is pointed out in Gerry Adams' book Free Ireland (1994). Adams points out that the struggle for independence is often supported within the parliamentary walls ofLondon for other countries. Adams cites the recent anti-apartheid movement in South Afiica in which John Hume publicly supported the revolutionary movement of the ANC in its armed struggle for independence, equality, and self.determination. Support for such movement within the borders ofNorthem Ireland has been dismissed consistently as nothing more than terrorism, and yet the IRA and the ANC seek the very same end, equality, equal representation, and opportunity. Throughout the six counties in Northern Ireland, the appearance of solidarity is evident in the slogans and murals that are painted on the houses in tlie ghetto areas ofNorthem Ireland. Gerry Adams indicates that what is needed in N orthem Ireland is a differentiation between society and the religious establishment. Adams contends that there is a place for the churches in society, that religion is important, but it should not be the issue that decides the future of Ireland. It should be the people, a diverse group of people with self-determination, that decides the future. Adams states: Our Irishness can only be inclusive if it takes in our diversity in all matters, and if we have a society of our own. To ignore these lessons ofhistory is to repeat the mistakes of the past. What is needed in Ireland, especially in the twenty-six counties, 38

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is the development of an anti-imperialism movement. Such a movement cannot be built around the slogan of socialism until socialism comes onto the historical agenda, until a distinctly Irish form of socialism is developed to meet our needs and conditions and until the majority class in Ireland, the working class, actually understands that this is in their interests and what they want. ff such a mass anti-imperialist movement, with an appeal to all major sections of Irish society, could be developed--and this is the urgent task of all socialists, Nationalists and Republicans--it would fuse together all those whose interests are adversely affected by imperialism, and would show people the connection between their localized and special grievances and the imperialistic domination of Irish society (Adams 1994:116). According to the Republicans, the British government and army do not have the right to be in Ireland. However, the current political, economic and military status remain in British hands. The British government still retains full authority over not only the affairs of the people in Northern Ireland but also the affairs in the Republic of Ireland. Historically, the British have been in Ireland for centuries and in the eyes of the Republican movement their presence have been coercive, violent, and sectarian in nature. The British presence in Northern Ireland systematically established that have initiated and perpetuated acts of violence in an attempt to remain in a position of privilege, establishing partition, fear, distrust, poverty, and fighting among the various factions in Ireland. The presence of the British in Ireland has brought with it many deaths of the Irish people, as well as those of British. soldiers and civilians. Economically, the British presence in Northern Ireland has created de conditions of financial dependency, and an enormous decline in the overall employment, creating unemployment rates that have reached eight to ninety percent in some areas ofNorthern Ireland. Foreign ownership in Northern Ireland has reached levels of forty percent; however, the gross earning potential is lower than the rest of those employed in the United Kingdom 39

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The loss of twenty-nine percent of the population and forty percent of the taxable capacity of the country, as well as the main industrial area and largest city, Belfast--a port through which passed one third of the national tradebefore partitionmeant that any attempt to build a viable economy would be doomed to failure. The loss of the industrial area around Belfast was particularly important. Metal goods has to be imported from Britain and paid for in goods Britain would accept. These were agricultural, mainly cattle. So dependent did the twenty-six counties become on this trade that, in the 1950's, the population was decreased to its lowest numbers while the state carried the highest number of cattle in its history. Indeed, since the Free State was established, half of its population has had to emigrate (Adams 1994:77). The Republicans maintain that British control directly involves the maintenance of structural discrimination. Discrimination in Northern heland in recent history has always been a way of life, and the Catholic who was fortunate enough to obtain work suffered discrimination in the type of employment available. The Loyalists contend that discrimination does not exist, or that it has been eliminated in the work place. Although discrimination was declared illegal in 1976, there has yet to be taken any meaningful measures to reverse the structural inequality. One example of the inequality is the Shorts Aircraft plant in the Belfast area. In this plant there is less than a five percent Catholic workforce, despite assurance from the British that equality in employment would exist as well as equal opportunity in employment. "Britain's economic interests in Ireland and their consequences represent, however, only one thread on the loom of colonial control and intervention" (Adams 1994:81). On an economic basis, Ireland is a marketplace as well as an industrial center that is dominated by the British. On the political front, many contend that if the British were to leave Ireland this would be represent the disassembling of the very nature ofthe British state. It would be the end ofcolonialization as the British and Irish know it. The prospect that appears to be the most threatening to British rule is 40

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national self-determination. A country that would have the ability to define and implement policy independent of Great Britain, and participating in governmental functions that were in the interests of the Irish population as a whole, would be the end of colonial and neo-colonial control According to Sinn Fein and the Republican movement, self-determination would mean the Irish would be in control of their own destiny, establishing foreign policy in their own interests, aligning with other countries and with those people that remain struggling for the right to self-determination and equality. However, Sinn Fein alleges the traditional claim to the territory of Ireland maintained by the British, is strongly supported by the United States and the European community as well. The primary concern of the other countries is the maintenance of the status quo and the pursuit of"stability." Because of this world concern the British have been very resourceful in the application ofoppression to maintain the status quo. Those in Ireland who claim to seek permanent peace, justice, democracy equality of opportunity, and stability cannot deny that the abiding and universally accepted principle of national self in which is, enshrined the principle of democracy, is the surest means through which to achieve and maintain their social and political aims. Self.determination is accepted to mean a nation's right to exercise the political freedom to determine its own development without external influence and without partial or total disruption of national unity or territorial integrity (Adams 1994: 171). British policy towards Ireland has been the refusal to allow the Irish people the right to exercise self-determination. The IRA and Sinn Fein have collectively identified this as the root of the conflict in Northern Ireland. Additionally, the refusal to allow self. determination in conjunction with the measures that they have taken to enforce this policy is the direct cause of the conflict-oriented relationship that exists between the two countries. 41

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The current culture that is slowly and methodically being forced into Irish society is nothing short of a dependency culture; The dependency culture is significant in the overall_ conditioning of the population to accept poor housing, high unemployment, forced emigration, living conditions that are below European standards, and the manifestations ofhopelessness through violence and bigotry. According .to Gerry Adams, "the struggle against cultural colonialism must be a key part of the reconquest of Ireland, of the makingof a new Irish humanity"( Adams 1994). Adams maintains what is crucial to cultural restoration is the restoration of the Irish language. Many of the people involved in the struggle believe that the reclaiming of the Irish language is of primary concern. They, along with others, feel that the language issue is central and cannot be left out of negotiations. Indeed, many refuse to entertain negotiations not inclusive of reclamation of the Irish language. The foundation of Sinn Fein's philosophy and that ofthe IRA is contained in the 1916 proclamation that established ownership of Ireland by the people of Ireland. This includes all the people of Ireland, not just the twenty-six counties in the south. What is essential in this struggle is this ideology: an economic, social and political democracy that does not have at its head a religious figure, but a secular government that separates church and state and places them in their proper realms. The contention is that it is imperative that a new constitution be drawn up that recognizes human rights based on international conventions. Sinn Fein is a Republican political party, which represents only the Catholic population and are engaged in the unarmed struggle for Irish national self.determination. Sinn Fein is firmly committed to the reunification of the entire country of Ireland and will continue to be so until victory is won or there are no longer members to engage in the struggle. They remain firm in their commitment to end the partition of Ireland and philosophically support the armed struggle to reunify this war tom country. 42

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The armed struggle in Ireland requires what Geny Adams calls "reflex physical force politics." In other words, regardless of the political dimensions, an armed struggle in itself creates a very significant political dimension requiring a strong community based political relationship. The emphasis is on the community, because in order to be successful in such a campaign, the community must not only be strongly supportive, but also it must be a participant at some level. Once there has been developed a political vision and a setting of goals toward that vision, then understanding the opponent's philosophy, politics and tactics becomes more important. It is at that point that an armed struggle is in itselfbecomes nothing more than a tactic. The use of an armed struggle in a conflict situation is a tactic of enormous importance, because it provides a cutting edge. Although there are many people that are in disagreement with the tactics employed by members of the Irish Republican Army, in the same breath there is acknowledgment of the vital importance they play in the political equation. There appears to be consensus that the armed struggle in and of itself is insufficient to produce the desired results. However, coupled with a non-armed negotiating effort in the political arena, a balance seems to occur, one that can and has brought about changes in the conflict. Despite Protestant fears that it is lending clandestine support, the British government is attempting to destroy the Republican movement. It has censored the Sinn Fein organization and excluded the organization from participating in the peace negotiations because of its support of the armed struggle in Northern Ireland. Now, in the spring of 1996, the peace talks have broken down and the IRA has resumed its bombing campaign in an effort to bring the British back to the negotiating table for genuine and sincere negotiations. In the past the British have failed to negotiate in good faith. This has resulted in the loss of many lives and much time to solve a conflict that has persisted for twenty seven years. The Sinn Fein organization is often 43

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misrepresented and misquoted in its position regarding the anned struggle in Northern Ireland. In a statement prepared for public record, the President of the Sinn Fein organization prepared a statement outlining their position on the anned struggle. Sinn Fein's position on the anned struggle is quite clear. We believe that the Irish people have the right to use anned struggle in the context of seeking Irish independence and in the conditions of British occupation in the six counties. Whether Irish people wish to exercise that right is a matter for them. That is our opinion. It is also a matter of political reality and a fact of life in the six counties. It will be so, unfortunately, until the conditions which create it are changed. Sinn Fein wishes to change these conditions. We want total demilitarization of the situation and an end to anned struggle kinds in our country. Sinn Fein does not advocate violence. We understand why the conflict continues and why there is anned resistance by the IRA to British rule in our country. The IRA has clearly stated on a number of occasions that for republicans anned struggle is a method of political struggle adopted reluctantly as a last resort in the absence of any viable alternative. The onus is on those who claim that there is an alternative to the IRA's anned struggle to prove that this is the case. Sinn Fein is committed to dealing with the central issues, to challenging the causes of conflict in Ireland and by so doing to create the conditions in which real and lasting peace can be established (Adams 1994: 149). 44

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CHAPTERS BALLYMURPHY: A COMMUNITY OF RESISTANCE In West Belfast, just north of the city cemetecy is a tightly-knit community that houses nearly 12,000 people. This unified neighborhood, whose reputation is common knowledge in all of Ireland, is called Ballymurphy. Guaranteed to evoke strong and emotional reactions, this community extends over eight housing estates in one square mile ofWest Belfast. Upon arrival in Belfast, Ciaran de Baroid, the author of the book Ballymw::phy and the Irish War. curiously asked a Citybus inspector where a bus could be found that could take him to Ballymurphy. The inspector responded "they don't take any buses to Ballymurphy, they bum all the buses in Ballymurphy." That was in 1972. The Ballymurphy community became famous during Easter week of 1970. The Protestants had planned a parade through the Catholic neighborhood against the wishes and pleas of the residents. Within minutes the bands had attracted large numbers of young people from Ballymurphy. The band had provoked a response from the crowd, a response that would lead to the siege ofBallymurphy. Within hours the entire area was overrun with military personnel and police in an effort to stop the rioting that had ensued. The stocy ofBallymurphy actually began in the spring of 1947 after WW ll. Large subsidies were made available to help the local authorities provide houses quickly for those that had been bombed out of their houses during the war. The Ballymurphy estate was an example of"early post-war planning" as houses were constructed by pouring a honeycombed mixture of cement and 45

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aggregate into shutters and skimming the :finished result with grout. Tlie lack of a cavity. in the quickly-constructed shells would later result in acute problems dampness and ill-health in Ballymwphy. Another innovation, brought about by a dearth of skilled plasterers, was the introduction of a new type of internal partition that was easy, cheap and quick to erect but did little for the solidity of the houses (De Baroid 1989: 9). Not many of the residents ofBallymurphy are able to boast of owning a business; in fact over half of the population do not work at all Some have never had a job, have never seen a paycheck, only a demeaning state issued welfare check. This community soon became the focus of myths about its residents, such as the keeping of coal in the bathtub, or the use Qfwindow and door frames for firewood. The myths also highlighted a lack ofhygienicpractices, innuendoes of partner swapping, all of which were oriented around the Catholic populations inability to work, to keep clean, or to provide anything of any v3}ue to society. Due to the discriminatory nature of the Protestant majority, those of Catholic descent were housed in areas such as Ballymurphy (see map pg.46), which consequently home to the Nationalists (Republicans). By the late 1950's, this small community had become a "transit location," one in which many families came and went, often in the middle of the night. Local leaders allege that nearly twelve thousand families moved in and out of the nearly seven hundred houses in approximately fourteen years. In an exhaustive study of this community, completed in 1973 it was pointed out that: In time, despite the high rents, this bad reputation undermined the attempts of the more responsible tenants to bring about improvements. Whether they wanted jobs, public services or credit, they found it was a heavy liability to have a Ballymurphy address. So, many of those who could have contributed to its improvement moved elsewhere, while others avoided it altogether and sought homes on estates that had a better reputation. Whether by accident or by design, the estate had by the late 1950's become a sort of clearing house for Catholic Belfast. The best potential 46

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tenants were creamed offby the Northern heland Housing Trust, the worst were offered houses in Ballymurphy, and those in between went to other corporation estates (Spencer 1973 : 11). INNER BELFAST 47

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The year 1969, with the eruption into violence of the civil rights movement and the onslaught of Loyalist attacks on the Catholic population, would be forever remembered in Ballymurphy. Late 1969 would be remembered as the year when the IRA moved into the area and began establishing very deep roots in this community. It would also be remembered by those in the Republican movement as the time when "all hell" broke loose in Ballymurphy. It had been reported that the Protestants were going to conduct a march through.Ballymurphy as a display of force and intimidation. Within minutes after the parade had begun, hundreds of people had flocked into the streets. This battle hardened crowd had weathered the Easter riots of 1969 and were prepared to put a stop to this march through their neighborhood (deBaroid 1989). After residents destroyed a RUC barracks, the British sent hundreds of troops into Ballymurphy. What was called the "Battle ofBallymurphy11 lasted for seven months, without respite. This small community had taken it upon themselves to redefine the terms on which they were to be treated. They had collectively decided that :fighting the British was their reason for being in Ballymmphy as well as the reason for their existence. Although there were countless casualties during this bloody the members of this community remember this time as a period of great dignity and pride. This battle also represented one of the most extraordinary confrontations between a civilian population and an elite, well-trained, well armed modem army. Every man, woman and child was involved. They didn't fire a shot, but for months, the British army had the hell beaten out of them. The women were humiliating and demoralizing them The kids were hammering them You had the whole community organized right down into street committees, so that you had a sort of spider's web of regular coordination (Adams 1986:51). 48

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One of the most impressive aspects of this battle was the level of community organization that was developed in a very brief time. Within just a few short weeks, Ballymurphy had become one solid unit of a unit that had a position and duty for each member of the community, right down to the children. Those that were either too old or incapacitated in some way provided logistical support in the form of escape routes, warning systems, and ammunition. Ballymurphy became tremendously innovative in the approach to the conflict, from tossing bottles filled with gasoline and rocks to the development ofblast bombs and nail bombs. The residents booby trapped their gardens, stretched wite between telegraph poles, and developed tripwires. Although with the.passage of time some of the memories of this period became blurred or distorted, the experience in 1969 has been forever ingrained in the psyche of the residents ofthat small community of resistance. Although many years have since passed, this community had methodically developed an intricate network of social, medical, and resource support systems that still remain the pictlire of solidarity and organiZation in the city of Belfast. The residents ofBallymurphy allege there are nothing less than sixty four different community organizations that act as support within the community. Ballymurphy, which is somewhat autonomous within the city of Belfast, developed associations directly involved with issues ofhousing, medical, the handicapped, employment, daycare, and banking. This community decided upon the goal of virtual selfsufficiency within the city ofBelfast. The residents ofBallymurphy took it upon themselves to supersede the authority of the local officials who have either ignored requests for action or do not feel their requests warranted any attention and thus established a system by which would resolve community issues without the help of the local authorities. 49

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Father Des Wilson, a Catholic priest and Ballymmphy community activist; provided insight into the conflict in this and other communities in West Belfast when he stated, "The IRA simply rose as any. revolutionary body would arise after intolerable living conditions." Wilson elaborated on the living conditions during his lifetime and indicated living conditions often required hiding under stairs from the "death squads" that frequented Catholic neighborhoods. During the course ofhis adolescence and adulthood, Wilson referred to the "Catholic Problem in Ballymmphy" that arose with greater frequency in the late sixties that could only be resolved by members of the police. According to my informant, Fr. Wilson, the "Catholic Problem" occurred as a result of massive migration of Catholics from the south seeking employment in the north. In 1969, with the migration of Catholics to the north an imbalance in the voting pattern occurred, creating problems for the pro unionist politicians (Loyalists). In an effort to maintain a majority, the politicians manipulated the voting districts to insure a Loyalist victory. This was partially accomplished through inflammatory speeches aimed at the Protestant majority in an effort to create an atmosphere of fear and hatred of the Catholic population. The problem would persist until the normal voting patterns had been returned to their nonnal pro-unionist (Loyalist) position, then normal integration patterns would be permitted until an imbalance occurred at some later date. The Northern Ireland government became the mechanics of the political. socia.J.. and religious fetvor in the late sixties, with religious leaders such as Ian Paisley, a Presbyterian Minister in Belfast intensifying the atmosphere of conflict with pro-unionist rhetoric directed at the Catholic population. Finally, the massive attack on the Catholic population by the British forces and police, preceded by a Loyalist provocative march through Ballymurphyin 1969 provided the opportunity for a military solution by a civilian population. The IRA emerged in Ballymurphy out of so

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the fortified request of those driven out of their homes, the IRA response (according to Des Wilson) to the. government intervention was ''What the fuck are you doing?" According to Father Des Wilson, the reason for the re-emergence of this paramilitary entity was a direct response to the demand of the people with the Catholics ofBallymurphy and the rest ofWest Belfast demanding some protection from forces insurmountable and unbeatable. Des Wilson contends that peaceful nonmilitary initiatives no longer exist, that any resolution will only be achieved through military perseverance by the IRA to demand an end to the repression. But that is not likely to occur, he admits, because the British government's position is strongly supported by the United States. In Northern Ireland, the conflict or "terror" as defined by the British cannot be explained other than asa tactic utilized by the IRA to accomplish its goal The "troubles" are part and parcel of what can only be defined as an irregular war, a war recognized and legitimated by only one side, the IRA and the Catholic nationalist population. The IRA represent a receptacle of those idealists that still desire to wage the war to free the North of Ireland and join once again the thirty two counties. These defenders of the nationalist's ideals in this conflict are not radicals or disgruntled patriots. They believe that their actions are justified and will benefit all of Ireland once it is reunited. The IRA According to the Republican movement, the root cause of the political evil in Northern Ireland has always been the British occupation and because of that presence it is acknowledged that the only way in which to deal with the imperialism of the British occupation force is through direct physical force. At the ideological core of this conflict is the IRA's assumption that any physical force exerted in the name of the Republic of Ireland, a united Ireland, will solidify the hearts of the Irish and guarantee 51

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a democratic future. The objective of the IRA has always been to reunifY the country, to re-establish a common name of "Irishmen" and to remove the denomination stigma created by the British government. In 1970, the strategy of the IRA was to organize and arm a secret army. Through retaliation in the form of gradually increasing provocation, the British forces would systematically alienate the nationalist's population, thus permitting wartime engagement with British security forces. The IRA successfully established a substantial constituency in Northern Ireland and abroad, which would provide physical and monetary assistance in the fight against the British security forces. They soon developed training procedures and intelligence gathering techniques, and became a skilled opponent in the field of guerrilla warfare. The British seemed at times mystified at the success rate of this clandestine group of revolutionaries who continually forced the them into committing classic strategic errors. One example of the success of the IRA occurred in July 1972, when the British sent heavily armed troops into "IRA no-go zones." When that encounter ended, ninety five British were dead. Tactical decisions made by the IRA often focus on the possJb.le and immediate means of escalating conflict. For the IRA, wlnerability is an essential element in its war effort against the British; to find an area that is least likely to be guarded, that may be understaffed, and/or may have a breach in security. This is where the IRA is most likely to strike and strike effectively. The Irish Republican Army is a persistent foe to the British and have become very cautious and extremely skilled. Although IRA volunteers have become very adept in the performance of their duties, the British learned to respond with tactics that at times stills the movement of the IRA Nonetheless, the IRA has become very sophisticated in its approach to conflict with the British. The tactical object ofthe IRA is: "(1) persist until the will wins over the 52

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entrenched assets of the Crown, and (2) escalate, escalate until the Crown will no longer pay the cost" (Belll993: 28). The campaign strategy between 1969-1971 was to lure the British forces into direct confrontation with the IRA. Therefore, as an IRA target, the British army would be in constant risk, regardless of whether an individual was on duty or off duty, in a uniform, a man or a woman it would not make any difference. If one was a part of the British military apparatus, one became a legitimate target for the IRA For this very reason, the British have made an effort to "criminalize" the IRA's campaign in an effort to shift the burden of responsibility onto the-local constabulary and away from the Crown. When this change was completed there would no longer be an IRA war, because it would have been reduced to a police matter to be taken up locally. This reduction ofBritish presence and the burdening of the responsibility upon others grants the British the opportunity not to address the issues that persist from 1969 until the present, and reduces what was termed a war to mere tn"bal murder. Some of the most crucial targets for the as with any revolutionary force, are the informers, who represent the betrayal of a dream as well as the betrayal of the purity of the vision. An informer undemiines all activity of the organization, and casts a measure of doubt on the faithful to the cause. Thus IRA informers become prime legitimate targets, because they instill a fear at the very heart of the organization. There is a constant question of "who will be the Judas amongst us?" Those who are found guilty of informing the British, regardless ofhow great or how little, will suffer the range of consequences from beatings to tarring and feathering, to being shot in the knee caps. Betrayal from the outside, ie. those individuals considered spies, crhni:nals selling information, informers without a conscience and political opponents are all targets without set rules for punishment. The IRA does not have any prisons, nor a judicial system by which to process these individuals. They do not have judges that 53

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would or could be in a position to grant leniency, therefore they must act directly and violently. Historically, targets of the IRA have been British personnel, sympathizers, and buildings, howeverthe avowed target for the IRA is the Northern Ireland economy. This makes virtually any object vulnerable to an IRA bombing attack from houses and stores, to hotels, bridges and parking structures. The IRA have stockpiled an enormously diabolical amount of devices, from crude and simple to very complicated detonating devices, all capable ofbeing planted and detonated weeks or months later by a device previously placed in a shop or buried in someone's garden. Since 1969, the British government has recorded over 3,000 deaths, shooting incidents in excess of31,000, and bombing incidents exceeding 15,000 (Northern Ireland Office 1990). Prison Imprisonment for IRA members and followers engaged in the conflict with the British became commonplace in Belfast and the Ballymurphy neighborhood in the years following 1969. It is important to understand the impact of prison from the perspective of a Ballymurphy resident, because it not only separated men and women from their families, but helped to solidify the community. Imprisonment in Northern heland often meant being held pending charges for up to two years before being tried for the alleged crime. Customarily, the defendant would be found guilty of the charges and have to spend an additional ten to twenty years in prison before being released back into society. For the residents ofBallymurphy, where a significant number of families have lost a member of the immediate family to the war effort or have a father or son or wife in prison because of activity against the British government or the government ofNorthern Ireland, life is unpredictable. A resident ofBallymmphy who has a family member in prison is often harassed by the RUC and British security 54

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forces. Their homes are often se.arched or placed under surveillance on a routine basis. For those Ballym.mphy familles separated by prison, the dynamics of reunification after prison are an awkward and often devastating process. The prison separation created an extra dimension that Fr. Des Wilson has termed "enforced opposites," ie., husbands and wives caught up jn a prison situation, working on their own. People become forgotten in the midst of prison, with the husband forced to maintain a life away from the family, the wife forced to :find work in whatever form to provide adequate provisionS for the family. In Belfast, a prison 'organization that provides assistance to prisoners both during and after release, Prison Fellowship, explained that the majority of the inmates who were prosecuted for their paramilitary activities came from families that were very dysfunctional in nature .. Dysfunctional behavior of children on an individual level was descnoed as disruptive in the classroom, insistent on being in control, often being expelled for behavioral problems as the Classic "stereotypical individual" that would and usually does get involved in gang activity, eventually leading to paramilitary activity by the age of thirteen or fourteen. I conducted an interview with a communications officer with Sinn Fein, the legal arm of the IRA, and the stereotype of the preadolescent behavior appeared to be accurate in his case. He reported that his thirteenth year as the year in which he dropped from school and began getting involved with the paramilitary units in West Belfast. During the course of the interview, he disclosed that by the time he had reached the age of seventeen he was heavily involved. Although cautiously candid, this officer spoke of his prison experience of seventeen years in Long Kesh prison: It was a tough regime. You have to keep in mind that people thought we were criminals. Even today, the British government 55

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refused to recognize that there are any political prisoners. They are saying that they are all criminals. Yet, the facilities, the hunger strikers embarked on a course of action, they embarked on a hunger strike to improve conditions in the prison, basically to be recognized as political prisoners. In essence what they went on a hunger strike for exists today. They had been through a long period where by there was a lot of protests, a lot of action that had taken place. So important in all these protests over the years for whatever, political status or just improvements in conditions and then as the years progressed we saw the need for an educational system to be established in the jail The prison authorities, however, weren't very concerned about your welfare and your well being. They basically wanted us locked up. The way they looked at us like dangerous people. We had committed, in their terminology, ''heinous crimes," and needed to be locked up, put offthe streeets.They embarked us on a conveyer belt system which was designed to block the courts. It didn't.matter if you were innocent, didn't matter how many witnesses you had to back your story, your were guilty! Then you were beaten and beaten, deprived of food and water, and then brought before a judge. He sentenced you for whatever. No jury--you never got a jury, it was just the judge, because the British government refused to recognize that there were political prisoners. So there is always going to be clashes with them, all the time. Everytime we achieved something, it was through a real hard struggle, which in the case of some of the hunger strikers costs ten lives. But the essence of what they died for exists today. When I went to prison you were allowed only one parcel of fruit a month one present a month, one letter a month, so it was really a harsh place to live. But now, with all the protests you can have as many letters as you want, your not evenlocked up, your cell door is open--all that came through prison struggle. Because I was given a life sentence, I wasn't aware of when I was going to be released. Basically what happens, when you are given a life sentence you have to do ten years regardless-unless you are a bloody soldier. But if you are Republican, you are going to do ten years. What happens when your ten years is done, you come up in front of what is called the life sentence review board, that consists of a governor, a welfare officer, a doctor, a judge, and whoever else they feel should review your case in your absence. They recommend one of two things, either release or continued imprisonment. So when I got my ten years, they said they would review my case in another four years. When 56

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I had fourteen years I was reviewed again in my absence, you don't go in there, you are invited to write an application to them Basically why you think you should be released. Being a republican meant that your case would always be reviewed at another time. They don't have to give you a reason. Eventually after my sixteenth year they gave me a reason .. .it was something silly but something to do with me still being a threat to society. Without actually saying it to you, they considered me a threat to society. Finally the next year they recommended my release. Normally with life sentence prisoners, before you are let out they have workshops that you attend for about three or four months so you can get accustomed to society, but in my case, because of my injuries they just released me, just gave me a bag and sent me home--but I didn't really have a home (Communications officer Sinn Fein: 1995). On a wall in Belfast, just north of the Falls Road, adjacent to an empty field, where a prospering bakery once stood before a bomb leveled it, are written :fuie demands made for those in prison: 1. The right to wear their own clothes. 2. The right not to do prison work. 3. Free association with fellow prisoners. 4. Full 50% remission oftheir sentences. 5. Normal visits, parcels, education and recreational facilities. The message and demands reveal another community of resistance. Although many of the prisoners Kesh.and Armagh prisons were at one time residents ofBallymmphy and surrounding nationalists neighborhoods, now they are members of another community, prison. During the early days ofthe conflict, in an attempt to curtail the amount of terrorist activity, the "conveyer-belt system" became the British's counter-insurgency technique of choice. The H-blocks of Long Kesh Prison began to .fill to capacity, creating living conditions unacceptable to the general population. In response to overcrowding and lengthy prison sentences, the prisoners requested increased recreational time and access to educational facilities, but their 57

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requests fell upon deaf ears and administrators hostile to any suggestion ofhumane treatment. On the outside, debate began concerning strategy to circumvent the role of the "conveyer-belt system" because of its effectiveness in removing people from the streets and placing them in prison, creating adverse and unhealthy living conditions on the growing population. Inside the prison walls, the inmates were faced with jailers who would with regularity kick over their food bowls so they were not able to eat and then demand they clean the cell of the mess which had been created. Eventually prisoners refused to clean the food from the cells and protested by smearing excrement on the walls. In retaliation, the jailers refused clothing to those prisoners choosing to participate in such an unacceptable form of protest, forcing the men to remain naked, .with only a blanket, confined to their cell This was the beginning to what was to become an internationally observed protest. Bobby Sands and the Prison Hunger Strikes The prison situation became worse in both the Long kesh and Armagh prisons. It was decided amongst the prisoners that unless the five demands were met by the British authorities a hunger strike would begin. A hunger strike was declared on October 27, 1980 and lasted until December 18th, which ended only after serious negotiations between London, Belfast and Dublin, producing the necessary results to end the dangerous hunger strike. However, the settlement was short lived as the agreement reached by the involved parties was never implemented by the authorities. The reason why negotiation and implementation of the agreement occurred, perhaps, can best be understood from situations that occurred during the summer and autumn months prior to the hunger strike. During that period and in response to the defiance being demonstrated by the prisoners, the retaliation by the predominantly Loyalist officials, combined with an IRA campaign to shoot prison officials when they were off-duty, created an appalling atmosphere that eventually escalated to dangerous 58

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levels both in and out of the prisons. Prior to the hunger strike, the Northern Ireland Office announced that instead of prison uniforms the inmates would be permitted to wear civilian clothes. However, this was not meant to mean actual civilian clothes, but "prison issue civilian clothes." One of the demands of the hunger strikers was to be able to wear "their own civilian clothes," not prison issue clothing. Thus began a hunger strike that lasted a month and a half Although the hunger strike had ended in December, the issues were not resolved. It was hoped that the concession of receiving clothing from the prisoners families would put an end to the protests. However, when they received the "prison issue civilian clothing" it became apparent that, although the strike had ended, there was more to come. It was at this point that Bobby Sands entered the picture. Born in 1954, a Catholic, he joined the IRA at the age of eighteen. Bobby Sands symbolized defiance and courage, traits the residents o.fBallym.urphy and other Catholic neighborhoods could rally behind. He was first convicted and sentenced to three years in prison shortly after becoming active in the Republican movement. After being released from prison in 1976, he once again became active in the ongoing maneuvers of the IRA. In October of 1976, he was returned to prison for his participation in the fire bombing of a furniture company. The weekend of January 23, 1981, the prisoners were informed that twenty men would wash, shave, and have their hair cut for which they would receive their "own" clothes for the weekend. With the clothes having arrived earlier in the day, Sands informed the governor that the prisoners wished to end the protest and wanted to cleanse themselves and wear their own clothes. However, after being infornied that once they had cleaned themselves up, shaved and were brought into "strict conformity" to existing prison regulations regarding appearance they would receive their own clothes, to be distn"buted after four in the afternoon, this was not to be. 59

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Despite repeated requests, the prisoners were refused the clothes their relatives had brought them This prompted Bobby Sands to issue the following statement: For our part we must realize that another hunger strike, should it collapse, would present the Movement with disastrous consequences. Therefore a second hunger strike cannot and will not end in defeat because as I have said before, when the balance of conformity outweighs that of resistance, then criminalization is indeed winning ... So, comrades, once again under the duress ofBritish barbarity and in the ugly face of further British intransigence we are forced to embark upon a hunger strike in the coming weeks. The announcement of this should be made public, along with the date, Friday, 30 January. The number ofhunger strikers shall be small, myself and three others, amongst them of course a representative of the I.RS.P .... I accept now that men will sacrifice their lives on this hunger strike. But you must all cast aside everything for total unity within these blocks-unity and steadfastness. You should, when a comrade dies, remain steadfast. Because, comrades, at the end of the day, men will die and the responSI'bility of enduring this protest for once and for all will not lie dead comrades, but with you. Because only your unflinching resistance and steadfastness will force an end to this protest. Therefore, stand together and give your fullest support to the officer in charge of these blocks. And in one way or another, comrades, victory will be ours, because we have the will to win. And we will win. (Bobby Sands:l981) In a symbolic gesture, the hunger strikers represented each of the six counties in N orthem Ireland, each being outstanding figures within the Republican movement and having been carefully screened to insure that no oscillation would occur between determination and despair. The IRA itself played a significant role in this hunger strike, gathering all available data on hunger striking from sources around the world to determine how best to utilize this experience and to evaluate the survival rate of hunger strikers during the strike. This particular strike was a well planned, carefully thought out protest, with prisoners joining in intervals to insure maximum 60

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effectiveness., In all the hunger strike lasted 217 days, ending on October 3, 1981. Although dying as a result of the hunger strike, Bobby Sands made a very powerful impression on the country. Bobby Sands came to symbolize the plight of all Catholics in N orthem Ireland through the international media attention he received during the course of the hunger strike. During the course of the hunger strike, Sinn Fein cast Bobby Sands for the vacant member of parliament seat in Fermanagh after the death of Frank McGuire. Being the only candidate running for the position, he won the seat in an April9, 1981 election. Although he achieved political status, he ironically died a member of the British parliament. Sands continued the hunger strike in spite of numerous appeals from the international community including members of parliament, human rights organizations, and the Pope's private secretary. Bobby Sands died on May 5, 1981. It was estimated that there were in excess of one hundred thousand people in attendance at his funeral. Throughout Belfast and the North of Ireland, both during and after the hunger strike death of Bobby Sands, the murals on the walls told stories ofthe incident, ofthe dream, andofthe death ofthe IRA man Bobby Sands. One such wall depicts a portrait of Bobby Sands rising above his casket, with three IRA men firing a volley over the casket, and off to the side the words 11I refuse to change to suit the people who oppress, torture, and imprison me, who wish to debnmanjze me ... I have the spirit of freedom which cannot be quenched by even the most horrendous treatment, of course I can be murdered, but I remain what I am--A Political Prisoner ofWar11 (Sluka 1992:200). In another mural depiction of the plight of the hunger strikers, a wall in Belfast portrays a man (presumably Sands) lying in a bed clutching a rosary. In the background is the depiction of the ''H'' block, symbolic of the H-blocks at the Long Kesh prison and a symbolic representation of the Virgin 61

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Mary with her hands outstretched. Above the mural are the words "Blessed are those who hunger for justice" (Sluka 1992: 201). By December of1981, seven months after the death ofBobby Sands, the majority of the demands of the prisoners had been met, which included wearing of their own clothes, 50% remission of their sentences, they were allowed to form "associations" within the prison that would allow each inmate the opportunity of conversing and interacting with other prisoners on a daily basis. They were also awarded the opportunity ofleaving their cells for up to a period of two hours each night and an hour's exercise each day. For the hunger strikers, their fight for humane treatment while incarcerated paid off Ten hunger strikers perished before the British government would concede to any of the "right" demanded by the prisoners. Bobby Sands and the other hunger strikers not only demonstrated defiance in the face of overwhelming odds but the same courage the residents ofBallymurphy had exhloited during the battle ofBallym.urphy. The Ballymurphy community, Long Kesh and Armagh prisons represent communities of resistance, that have been engulfed in a battle with the British government and .the majority Protestant Loyalist population over issues of housing, employment, education, and fair treatment. Views of this conflict are as varied as the solutions, but the struggle and resolve demonstrated by the Catholics must be acknowledged. The residents ofBallymwphy represent a unified community, a community that has not only endured ferocious armed confrontation, but also isolation in terins of opportunity in employment, education and decent housing. Yet, this community represents the aggregate and unified effort of all its residents and has managed to continue to struggle for equality. One cannot help but see around them the reminder of the struggle, of the resistance, of the hope. On each wall in Ballym.urphy stands the story of a people desperately wanting freedom, desperately 62

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wanting a chance to rise above the adverse conditions they face each day. The residents of this community of resistance stand behind each and every prisoner in the H-blocks at Long Kesh prison and the women's prison facility at Armagh. On windowsills throughout the community are the reminders.oftheir struggle such as "Free the POWs," and each household has a story that will remind you of how brave their "freedom fighters" are, what they have accomplished, what they have surrendered for the cause of the Republican movement. Training and Development Ballymurphy, a small community of 1,200 families in West Belfast, has come to be known as a community to be reckoned with, a community that possesses such solidarity that its niatch is yet to be found. Within this small community there are sixty-four different community organizations that maintain a support system for each of the families that reside in the community. In the summer of 1995, while staying with a family in Ballymurphy, I was able to see first-hand the unity and solidarity of an impoverished community, a cominunity that experiences sixty to eighty percent unemployment, and yet has highly trained-highly educated people unable to obtain career positions because they are Catholic. Some of the residents ofBallymurphy have been trained and retrained for employment positions that will probably never be realized. The training center located a couple of miles from the heart ofBallymurphy attempts to proceed optimistically with the unemployed and youth of the community, all of which wait patiently and expectantly for the opportunity to become gainfully employed. The director of the Springvale training center related what soon was obvious, that Catholics in Northern Ireland are considered second class citizens. Discrimination in jobs and housing has been thoroughly documented. The director of the Springvale training center stated very clearly that 63

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Teachers would not have trained Catholics or educated them, for instance, in the fields of engineering or manufacturing, because, traditionally these were predominantly Protestant areas of work and we would have had just too much of an uphill struggle to get a young person leaving school into an engineering company(Lyons: 1995). Teaching, medicine, law, and construction are considered "Catholic" roles, which may explain the overwhelming advances this segment of the population has experienced in the past twenty seven years. The Catholic population is pursuing training, attempting to get their fair share of the jobs that do come into the area. The Catholic population and particularly the youth realize the false expectation of jobs occurring Without pursuit and preparation. Mary Lyons, director of a job training center, dehoerately focuses on competition for jobs at all levels, indicating "we can't expect all jobs to come to the area just to be for ourselves and ourselves alone.'" In other words, I feel there is a genuine incentive for both the Catholic and Protestant communities to live, work, and develop the community jointly, for the success of the community as a whole. However, in the East Belfast Development center I met the director who displayed a rather bleak picture of the Protestant community, portraying it as fragmented and unable to compete with the Catholic organizational structure. East Belfast Development Center director, Frank Draught elaborated on the condition of the Protestant community and its sense of "hopelessness and lack of community development," by portraying the Protestant community as having always been in charge always having the jobs, always being taken care ofby the politicians, because it was "our government." He felt that the current strength in the Catholic community is a result of a fifty year history of struggle, a struggle he believed solidified the community twenty seven years ago into a formidable group that was able to work within the bureaucracy to make advances in its socio-economic situation. The solidification of the Catholic community came as a result of consistent guidance and 64

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support of the Catholic church. This appears to be the strength of communities like Ballymurphy, as opposed to the Protestant communities of East Belfast. Protestants have numerous different denominations, which proceed in different directions. Jobs for a Protestant were virtually automatic, if you were an "orange man or woman" (term referring to the Loyalist or Protestant), but power structures began to change in the seventies. With the onslau,ght of the IRA and British involvement, jobs and opportunities changed. A lot ofbusinesses left Northern Ireland during the height of the "troubles" and with them went opportunities in manufacturing and other jobs typically given to Protestants. I think the key to community involvement and the creation of jobs lies in focus and investment. The Sinn Fein organization has developed over the past twenty seven years a constituency of working class people that focus exclusively on issues within the community, for example, housing for women who have many children and a husband either in prison or not at home. Another focus is the approximate 90,000 homeless people in West Belfast. The success of this organization can be directly linked to the unification of the community, coupled with the fact that ethnic identity is closely linked to religious identity in this The unified communities, like Ballymurphy, provide the opportunity for organizations like Sinn Fein to provide services to the community without the fragmentation experienced by Protestant communities. Val Martinez, the Consulate General of the United States praised the organizational ability of Sinn Fein in his 1995 statement: They (the Catholics and Republicans) are well represented in West Belfast, they are probably the second largest political party in Belfast. I would say here in Belfast, their organization is superb, they are well organized. They have a grass roots organizing, they\re opened their own offices, they have constituents in the offices. They are very energetic. So, whatever one thinks of their politics, they do a good job in organizing, 65

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especially in the cities. Especially among the working class and unemployed in private areas (Martinez: 1995). Re-examining some historical data reveius the fact that the Catholic community, and in particular the community ofBallymurphy, has suffered extensively under the Protestant majority. One example, revealed by Fr. Des Wilson, was the lack of any governmental plans to enhance the wealth-producing potential of Ballymwphy. All development money channeled into Northern Ireland, particularly Belfast, never seems to affect those with the most need-the Catholic population. Instead, the grants, billions of dollars of which originate in the U.S., are funneled through people who own existing businesses or are heavily influenced by the business community, all of Protestant origin. What has been created in the midst of the unequal distribution of grant money, employment opportunities, and housing has been the solidificatimi of the Catholic community. What has also been created in the midst of the turmoil, discrimination, and repression is distrust of the entire political structure in Northern Ireland by the Catholic population. Earlier in the year when I visited with the director of the Job training center, she expressed optimism in the grant giving process, and hope for those in need of employment. In my following visit in July there was a noticeable difference in her level of enthusiasm It had just been revealed that the U.S. government had awarded the largest grant of money (2. 7 billion dollars) to 11Shorts Manufacturing ... This company is solely oWn.ed by Protestants and employs at the maximum less than five percent Catholics. Her comment revealed her distrust in the system when she said, "I should have known better than to trust the government to be more equitable in the distnoution of grant money ... I guess that training we've been doing for all these 66

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people has been for naught--the bastards., (the Northern American governments). The Loyalist, however, experiences a distrust also, but not in the same realm as the Catholic population. Many Loyalist see the British government is seen by many as having abandoned their loyal subjects, citing consistent siding with the ''Nationalists., on issues that involve the sovereignty of the Ulster provinces. Many of the Loyalists I interviewed expressed identical opinions about the Westminster government, such as the betrayal they felt on issues such as negotiating with the IRA and Sinn Fein, and issues surrounding shared political power in the six counties of Northern Ireland. Although billions of dollars have been poured into development programs of which the Loyalists have been the recipients, they insist it should remain with those .loyal to the crown and not be put into the Catholic community. The vision of equality was very important to both the Nationalists and the Loyalists, however it was viewed very differently. Equality, freedom and justice are conceived in entirely different terms when speaking to the Loyalist and the Nationalist. For the Loyalist, the issue of equality, justice and freedom is a social process that evolves rather being designed or whereas, the Nationalist views them as .a desired result. The differences between the Nationalist and Loyalist vision of equality, justice and freedom are demonstrated in the priority attached to each goal One of the contemporary clashes between the two visions is oriented toward compensatory preferences. The Nationalists view this as imperative in the attainment of equality in status and opportunity, with the anticipation of enabling the Nationalist population the opportunity of obtaining results similar to those of the more fortunate Loyalist majority. For those in the Nationalist camp, equality and freedom are not in conflict, but represent a duality in application of similar principles, this has often been equated 67

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with "political democracy" and "economic democracy." On the other hand, the Loyalists maintain there is tremendous conflict between allowing freedom of individual action and the prescnoing of social equality. Although equality definitively exists in the visions ofboth the Nationalists and the Loyalists, the capabilities can vary enormously between the individual social groups. The most significant difference between the Nationalists and the Loyalists visions of equality does not existin their individual perceptions of people as they are. What distinguishes one vision from another lies.in the arena ofhuman potential The concept of equality thus has opposite implications in the two visions. To those with the unconstrained (Nationalist) vision, a greater equalization of material conditions is imperative, even if the means of accomplishing this require the more morally and intellectually advanced to restrict the discretion of others in the marketplace, or through judicial activism in the law, or by other social or political devices. But to those with the constrained (Loyalist) vision, the gap between the actual and the potential is much smaller, and with it there is a correspondingly smaller difference between the intellectual and moral elite, on the one hand, and the ordinary person on the other (Sowelll987:138-139). In the conflict of visions in Northern Ireland, the battle is not over the degree of equality, but what exactly is to be equalized. The Nationalists maintain it is the material conditions that require equalization, and power should be delegated to those that possess moral and intellectual fortitude. The Loyalists have a vision of a united "Ulster" that includes an evolved Catholic Nationalist population that has been incozporated into the traditions held most important by the Protestant majority. The Irish Republican Army, representative of the interests of the Catholic population want a unified Ireland of thirty-two counties. Each vision differs significantly, each with its 68

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own agenda and priorities, and each wanting what the other has and does not want or . intends to share. There are some within Protestant circles with whom I spoke, that envision the IRA as wicked, evil in intent, and malevolent, an entity of Roman Catholic origin, or as a communistic organization bent on recreating a socialist state. However, a great many Catholics do not share that seeing these individuals as patriots, heroes, above reproach and a competent group representing the reuniting of their country. Those who advocate of non-violence and road of diplomacy over that of the gun, find the tactics of the IRA unpalatable and inexplicable. The IRA as a whole really do not care to address the agendas of others, this organization has a role (they feel) that has been defined, documented, and empowered through the Dublin parliament in 1921. The constituency this organization represents is different from the perceived or exaggerated one portrayed in certain circles. It must be noted, however, that any armed struggle, particularly one that involves violence in two countries, is not an easy matter to define or defend. Terror (as defined by the British government) is no more inexplicable than any other strategy used in war or civil conflict. It represents in itself a means to an end. This is the essence, the very nature of an "irregular war." The Rqmblican "Dream" The IRA represents more than just the perceived defenders of a minority, vulnerable to the will of a dominant majority. Each member of the IRA is a "true believer" in what is being done, representing much more than class identity, encompassing the lives of relatives, past and present, families, and communities. The IRA movement is a life unto itself The dream of a united Ireland, although contradictory to some by present standards, often denied by many, and viewed as impractical by even more, provides the fuel that inaintains the Republican movement. Often one realizes a united Republic for only a few moments as the symbolic funereal 69

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volley over a fallen comrade's coffin pierces the ears of the mourners. A united Ireland, an Ireland of equality in opportunity, has been the dream of the IRA in its struggle against the British government, and many in this country have been touched bythe Republican dream Whether acknowledging or discarding the feeling, they have been touched by it. Yet, to the amazement of all, this movement has generation after generation being renewed by the fighting to make the dream a reality. The campaigns of the IRA have assumed the sensational, have experienced inexcusable blunders, betrayal and schism, but there are countless numbers who still wish to be a member ofthis.organization. Each volunteer is dedicated and determined in spite of the burden ofhistory. They carry with them a past often misread, misused, and misunderstood, but a past that has never nor will ever be forgotten. The IRA knows what is wrong with Ireland, and they also know how to correct it, what will be the prize in the end. From the certainty each and everyone of them shares, the dream supplies the organization with the necessary power to persist. To the IRA, the dream and its solution are simple. Remove the British from Irish soil The only appropriate way in which to achieve this is through armed struggle, not compromise or conventional politics. According to Gerry Adams of the Sinn Fein organization, a united Republic would re-instill the common name of Irishmen, destroying the denominational barriers that have tom the country apart for many years and re-unite the population as a whole, free from the bondage of the British government. Each member of the IRA is committed to the armed struggle with the British and enjoys a vast support network of those considered to be the "invisiole Republicans," i.e., those willing to be passively involved, supplying a house, providing a look-out, or looking the other direction. Almost every member of this organization has spent their entire life within the movement, representing the workers party. Ibis 70

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organization has few dissenters. Regardless of position within the organization, every member at some point in his or her life becomes a true believer in the cause of the Republican movement. The numbers who have participated in the Republican movement, in the IRA, are in the thousands. Not all of those who chose to join the ranks of the movement were idealists, but as an observer I would venture to guess that the majority, if not all, were touched by the .. dream. 11 For the Republican 11dream11 to be realized and the authenticity ofits objectives understood, acceptance and recognition must originate from the world community. In order to achieve this end the political status of the IRA and Sinn Fein must be validated by the international community, of political entities such as the nations of the United States, France, Germany, and Great Britain. In Northern Ireland, the Sinn Fein organization is working towards accomplishing the 11dream" of the Republican movement. Sinn Fein represents the legal arm of the IRA and is a political wing fiercely fighting to have its message heard. For many years the voice of the Sinn Fein .organization and its current President Gerry Adams have been censored, forbidden to have its message spread to the people in Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Great Britain. Until recently, this organization has had to rely upon word of mouth and hearsay to get its message across. When the opportunity presented itself: rather than being able to share Sinn Fein's message, questions were directed towards reactions about the actions of the IRA, as opposed to the 11dream11 of the Catholics in Northern Ireland. From a recognition stand point, Sinn Fein suffers from a crisis in both identity and stratification. The organization fails to attract enough support froni. those people in classes other than the working class. One of the communication officers of the organization freely admitted that Sinn Fein has to rely on people who may not 71

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have the necessary educational qualifications to attract people from other social classes but are "streetwise." Sinn Fein must be recognized as a separate entity from the IRA Each entity, the IRA and Sinn Fein, have different agendas, different objectives, but one goal: the goal of a united Ireland; A Chancellor for the Sinn Fein organization drew a correlation between the issues and conflict in Northern Ireland to those occurring during "apartheid" in South Africa. Paralleling the Protestants :in Northern Ireland with the Whites in South Africa, the Chancellor alluded to the privilege and position enjoyed by the white population in South Africa for so manyyears, comparing it to the wealth, position, and privilege the Protestants have enjoyed for so many decades. "We have never seen the sun, never enjoyed that privilege, and we are in the process ofbuilding that for everyone, not just simply for ourselves, because that would be reverse discrimination and that doesn't resolve anybody's problems" (Morrice, Sinn Fein: 1995). Members of Sinn Fein admit the Nationalist community has improved over the past twenty-seven years, citing they have "moved from second class citizens to second class citizens of rebellion." Still, by admission, the organization and the community at large lacks the support and participation in the Republican movement from individuals who are educated and have positions conducive to creating change. The longevity of the conflict in this city has created a vacuum, attracting the most promising and the most gifted to areas outside ofBelfast and Northern Ireland, some to find employment, others tired of the conflict. This conflict encourages those with aspirations for a better future to emigrate to a country which offers equalitY, education, and opportunity to fulfill whatever dreams they may have. Sinn Fein's goal is to get involved in the lives of those within the community, to help them understand each other's capabilities. Sinn Fein focuses its energy on the needs of those in the 72

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community. Sinn Fein's focus allows the organization not to stray from its objective and continue to build from within "this community of rebellion," developing a dynamically sound community with a sense of worth and a desire to achieve the "dream" of the Republican movement. Citing the determination of the residents ofWest Belfast, the communications officer of Sinn Fein paraphrased the thoughts of the families ofBallymurphy and their determination to better themselves through a collective effort in one of our many conversations: The families that live in Ballymurphy have come through a over the years. Probably more so than a lot of other areas, they've really somehow jelled together. Whereas in a lot if other areas, like the Fails, people would just leave hoping to better themselves, trying to get a different house, a different job. But in Ballymurphy that doesn't seem to be the case, people will just get a house around the comer or just up a side street, anywhere in that area--they don't want to leave and I think that is because of the camaraderie that exist in that particular area. There are only a couple of areas in Belfast that have the same tightness about them, and the Shortstrand is another area of Belfast that would have the same feel--people are just reluctant to move out of those areas. I know of people that have moved away from these areas and then can't wait to get back to them because they experience something that is totally alien to what they are used to. Because of the families, because of the neighbors dropping in, because everyone was aware of what was going on, everyone knows who is in the area. If something happens people in your area are the first to rally to your support. There is a lot of togetherness, a lot of camaraderie in both the Shortstrand and Ballymmphy areas, a lot of community and tightness and security, they're good strong people (Communications officer, Sinn Fein: 1995). The Catholics residing in such areas as Ballymurphy and Shortstrand are closely tied to one another, and collectively within the community. Life in these communities is far from the standards of the European community in which they 73

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reside. Although conditions have vastly improved, I listened to recollections of childhood violence that remafu forever etched in the psyche of each and every adult. Conversations can be overheard of life in West and North Belfast with little food, clothing, and hope, conversations that offer some insight into the roots of the conflict that existed and currently exists in Northern Ireland. In the pubs ofBallymurphy, I heard men, women, and children reflect daily upon their childhood, on the discrimination they experienced while growing up and question what it was they did to deserve such a fate. Being one of six people that resided in a house quaintly referred to as "two up and two down" (two bedrooms up and a kitchen and sitting room downstairs), the communications officer of Sinn Fein reflected briefly about his childhood and the conditions under which he was brought up. Mother, Father and three other brothers-so six in all were brought up in what we call "two up and two down." What that meant was that two bedrooms upstairs and downstairs you had the kitchen and you had the sitting room and as I say the yard was your toilet basically--we had no toilet at that time. You grow up with those sort of conditions and you are aware at that particular time there is not a lot of money about. For instance, I seen many a time, rm no to Sllre if you are familiar with brown sauce, but brown sauce would be something that you would put on chips, on potatoes, on fish. I have seen me sitting down many a night with a round ofbread with brown sauce on it, and that was your table. Many times you sit down and you have bread and the wee triangles of cheese, that was because there wasn't a lot of money and you are aware, you are living in a mixed area, there are a lot ofProtestants-but they had money at least a lot more than any Catholic family had. I would often run about in plastic shoes and plastic sandals in the summer, plastic shoes in the wintertime. You have short trousers on and you are always getting hand-me-downs because there are four brothers. I remember distinctly when we made our first communion, my mother brought me round to the pawn shop and you went through the sacks of the clothes people had left. There is where I got my clothes for my first communion, and my confirmation as well. You knew that you 74

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weren't alone, because many of your friends had the clothes from the pawn shop also, most people went through it then but tQday a lot of things are changing in that respect. Those were really hard times, we didn't have a lot facilities the way you do now with the leisure centers. So when I was young there was no place to really go, a couple ofboxing clubs, you were basically confined to the streets and because you are on the streets, the conflicts began-particularly in 1969. That was the year when a lot of people got burned out by the Protestants and the Police, when you had to live on the streets. You had to witness everything first hand, the hatred, the beatings, the killing, you were witnessing all this first hand-and you couldn't help getting caught up--which is what happened to me (Communications officer, Sinn Fein: 1995). The communications officer explained to me that getting involved in the movement began for almost all participants in the Republican movement by the age of thirteen or fourteen years old. Involvement included the closest friends in the block and the friends with which you went to school It also meant leaving school to get involved, dropping out of school to pursue a dream of greater glory, to accomplish something, to contnbute in some fashion to the bettering of one's neighborhood, one's life and the life of one's family. A few years after his participation in the "troubles" in N orthem Ireland, the communications officer had been arrested and imprisoned. Although most of those interned were Catholic, arresting almost anyone, for whatever charge they could create, just to get them off the streets. The British army focused on students, as they were seen to be the biggest threat due to the numerous and often volatile nature of demonstrations, and people the army suspected to be Republican and those sympathetic. After seventeen years of incarceration in the "H" blocks at LongKesh prison, the communications officer for Sinn Fein was released. He had been in prison longer than most of the other inmates and still could not understand why he was considered a threat because of the severity of his injuries he sustained as a result of a bomb explosion, but he nonetheless spent his time until his release four years ago. 75

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Maintaining the 11dream11 of a united Ireland, the communications officer soon joined forces with Sinn Fein in their P.O.W. department. During a conversation he emphasized repeatedly how important it was not to take a 11back seat .. in this effort, how he could not become complacent regardless ofhow long he had spent in prison. He has maintained the "dream11 and is pursuing it to help those that have been dealt a blow in their lives, because they are Catholic. The communications officer and the Sinn Fein organization are working feverishly to provide assistance to the community they serve, and to participate in the peace negotiations that will someday bring an end to the violence in N orthem Ireland. The people ofBallymurphy remain unified. It is a community that has weathered civil war at its worst. This is a community that has tremendous pride and tenacity, a community that possesses the 11dream11 and lives each day to :fulfill that dream of a united Ireland. They are staunchly Republican and pro Sinn Fein, and represent what I think more communities should be like, strong in convictions and single minded in will and determination. They have very strong family values that carry into everyday activities. This proud community is the heart of the Republican movement and its people exemplify that belief Although plagued with very high unemployment (and generational unemployment) each member of this community has a :function, a purpose, and an obligation to :fulfill to the community. 76

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CHAPTER6 CONCLUSION Perspectives on conflict include the theoretical, sociological, political, cultural, and religious. What perspective best provides an effective understanding of cultural violence? What is the best tool to utilize when describing those involved in the conflict? This research has addressed the issue of conflict in N orthem Ireland contextually, theoretically, and interpersonally. The British government and the U.S. government as well wish to portray the situation diplomatically, without disclosure of the conditions, the intexventions, the negotiations, or the roles of varying factions either included or excluded from participation in the decisions being made on behalf of the residents ofBelfast and the remainder ofNorthem Ireland. For the residents ofBallymurphy, those forced to live under oppressive and repressive conditions, conflict cannot be considered a phenomenon that is socioculturally fragmented. It is intrinsic to everyday life. "Conflict cannot be excluded from sociallife ... Peace is nothing more than a change in the form of the conflict or in the antagonists or in the objects of the conflict, or finally in the chances of selection" (Weber 1968:232). Literature defines conflict as a cultural phenomenon, a form of social interaction, which may vary from one society to another, but remains defined by that society. In this particular instance, the conflict is systematically defined through the "armed struggle" with British imperialism The very nature of conflict is subjective, being defined and redefined in not only content but form and character as well Conflict cannot be dismisse4 as exceptional, irrational, or void of me3ning, nor can it be categorized as something instinctual. Conflict and its violent 77

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manifestations represent human behavior responding to external forces that are often the result of stratification. Conflict interpretation requires an understanding of the norms, ideologies, values, and world-view of a society, based on the premise that the participants within that society have societally shared characteristics. Abner Cohen strongly emphasized the dynamics that existed between conflict, cultural symbols, and power relations, particularly the interrelationship or "causal interconnections" between culture and power. Cohen argued that "culture (symbolism) and power are the two major variables that pervade all social life, and that anthropology is best suited to the analysis of the relationship between the two domains" (Cohen 1979:11). It is my opinion that the struggle that exists between the Catholic population and the British!Protestants amounts to a struggle the rich and the poor. It has also surpassed being a struggle over work, the right to own property, discrimination, and repression. It has also become a struggle of interpretation of the past and the present and how the future will be shaped. The conflict further represents a struggle in the identification of causes, and the assessment of blame. It appears to me that relations among caste/race groups, ethnic groups and classes are becoming starkly simplified --that the lines are being clearly drawn between those who have and those who have not; between the rich and poor; between high caste and low caste; between "developed" nations and "developing" ones. The subtleties and complexities seem to be diminishing, and with them the niceties are being dropped. Naked power is being resorted to more unabashedly as the conflict becomes more evident, the contenders more clearly defined, the means less camouflaged, the rules less constraining, noblesse oblige less practiced, the use of force more blatant, the stakes greater, the rewards and injuries more stark. Therefore, I think, the incidence, the likelihood and the impact of overt conflict between unequals is increasing both within and between societies and nations (Berreman 1977:235). 78

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Conflict and group violence in any form have proven to be an effective and perhaps rational means of achieving a political end. In 1969, when the IRA re emerged as an element of contention in the :fight against the British, the violence that ensued for the next two decades brought about significant changes in political, socio economic, educational, and living conditions in and around Belfast. I would contend that the confrontational approach taken by the IRA does not justify the ends and that an alternative approach could have been sought. However, conflict must be understood in terms of possessing both functional and dysfunctional aspects. Conflict can and has produced social order and stability contrastly, conflict has also produced disorder and change. It is self-defeating to study violence as if it were obscene, nor does recognition of its relevance condone or encourage it. Quite the contrary is true. Like many things, violence is deeply ambiguous in all its aspects, containing both functional and dysfunctional tendencies, capable ofboth positive and negative outcomes (Nieburg 1969:9). In Northern Ireland, the politics of confrontation has become just that, confrontational politics. It has proven to be an effective means by which and through which to improve the bargaining position for the Catholics in Belfast and the remainder ofNorthem Ireland. The preferred tactics of political participation, petition, and peaceful demonstrations have gone unnoticed, social change remained unchanged, and the future of the residents ofBelfast's Catholic population is uncertain. On the other hand, I would maintain that the conflict and confrontational politics have provided a means by which much has been accomplished in the past twenty seven years. It suggests to me that the axiom of power-conflict theory lies on the premise that no relatively advantaged, powerful or dominant group is ever willing to relinquish the power or position that have. "Tragically, the rich and powerful are 79

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almost never persuaded to change through reasoned argument or moral persuasion. The mobilization of power is the major, if not only, means of achieving progressive change in stratified societies" (Sluka 1992: 31). It is my opinion that the root causes of the conflict and violence in N orthem Ireland can be directly traced to the correlates of social stratification. In 1969, Belfast witnessed the eruption of a population subjected to generations of inequality to wealth, status and power, discrimination, repression, and oppression. The social stratification that existed then still exists, fueling the flames of conflict in response to the ethnic, religious, and ideological discrimination. In a previous study, Berreman noted that, wherever there is significant disparities between social groups in access to life chances, there is suffering and conflict because these are systems which assure privilege to some at the expense of others, and people do not acquiesce easily to that situation. When they do, it is not because they agree to its legitimacy or inevitability, but because they know the uses of power (Berreman 1977:229). Without restructuring the existing form ofBelfast's society, without redistributing the balance of power to an equitable state, the cause of social conflict and political violence will continue because of the social stratification. I continue to maintain that the causes of violence in N orthem Ireland cannot be removed or alleviated without altering the current structure. If peace is to be realized in the North of Ireland there must be a diligent and genuine effort placed in resolving or at least seriously reducing the grievances of those who have chosen to engage in confrontational politics. Social inequality cannot be eliminated, nor can oppression, or exploitation of the underclass, but certainly it can be reduced by addressing with sincerity the grievances of those voicing disapproval Incremental reduction in the scope and intensity of the causes of conflict can create a rippling effect that can be 80

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seen and heard throughout the world. If there is to be an end to the violence in Northern Ireland, it will have to come from an international community that does not have a stake in the future ofNorthem Ireland. People from the European community that will objectively and logically evaluate the current issues being negotiated and make recommendations that would expedite resolution. The words 11freedom., justice, and power11 all have different meanings to the Protestant and Catholic that lives in Belfast, who lives either in the Shankill or Falls area, or the Ballymurphy area of that city. Each vision of reality differs from the other, visions are inherently in conflict, but both visions are nonetheless concerned with social results. The Republican vision includes the achievement of socio economic and political reforms that are the product of collective decision making. For Republicans the degree of freedom they wish to achieve is the degree to which one's desires can be realized, the potential understood, regardless of the obstacles, whether that would assume the form of a restrictive government or some other prerequisite. For Loyalists, the clash that exists between the two visions lies not in the actual degree of freedom, justice or power, but the fact that in each of these concepts there can only be 11 degrees of'' and not .. absolutes. 11 Visions help to provide explanations for ideological differences, which have been directly responsible for political differences. In the final analysis, the implications and dynamics of each vision can assist in the clarification of the issues, without diminishing in importance either the dedication or significance of one's vision. In Belfast, degrees of conflict will be inevitable for some time. That is just a social reality, however, what is not inevitable are social conditions. These conditions are created by people, endorsed by a majority, and what people are capable of creating, they are capable of dismantling and recreating. Wars are fought on many fronts. This war is fought in the streets, the neighborhoods, the prisons and in the 81

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political arenas of Belfast. What sustains the momentum and provides the fuel to continue the struggle are oppression, repression, discrimination and missed opportunity. In Belfast, the struggle remains the same: equality, both politically and domestically. I contend that once social changes have occurred and there is greater equality in representation, confrontational politics will diminish. The complexity of political contention in Northern Ireland has led many to believe that a solution does not exist as it presently stands. The United States and the international community can play a very positive and significant role in the solution of the problems that exist in Northern Ireland, by creating a climate conducive to a successful peace process. Active participation in the affairs ofNorthern Ireland by the international community could be a viable solution to the current stagnation in the peace negotiations. In Ireland consensus exists that naked force is an illegitimate form of authority. However, in this instance, there exists a significant number of people who support the legitimacy of Sinn Fein and the IRA. Throughout many towns in the North oflreland there are people that genuinely acknowledge an existence of a state of war with Great Britain and demand the removal of the security forces. Eamonn McCann states, "The IRA claimed recognition as the sole inheritors of the Republican tradition, a status which, 'once asserted, cannot by its nature be subjected to democratic contestation ... theirs was a philosophy which presented the people ... with no problems. One might disagree with it, and many did, but it was not our tradition to disrespect it." The republican struggle is strong, confident and will continue for as long as it needs to. We have come through years of vilification and marginalization. We are never going back to that. We are moving forward. There are no backward steps, no standing still-there is only one way-and that is forward to a free Ireland and a lasting peace (Adams 1994:204). 82

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GLOSSARY Anglo-Irish AgreementA document agreed to by the Fine Gael/Labor coalition Government of Ireland and Mrs. Thatcher's Conservative Government in the United Kingdom in 1985. It stipulates that there shall be no change in the constitutional position ofNorthem Ireland for so long as the majority wishes to remain as part of the United Kingdom Articles Two and Three of the Irish ConstitutionThese two provisions of the Irish constitution lay claim to all thirty-two counties of Ireland. Clann na Gael-An Irish-American Nationalist organization founded in 1867 in the wake of the failed Fenian rising and later linked to the Irish Republican Brotherhood. Dail Eireann-Irish Parliament. Devolution-The delegation or surrender of power formerly held by a central government to regional or local authorities. E.E.C.European Economic Community. Fianna Fail-"Warriors ofF ail" (a poetic symbol for Ireland). Founded in 1923 by Eamon de Valera when he split with Sinn Fein, this is the largest and most powerful of the Irish political parties. I.N.L.AIrish National Liberation Army. A splinter group from the IRA. I.R.A.Irish Republican Army. Formerly the Irish Republican Brotherhood. A revoultionary secret society dedicated to establishing an Irish Republic by force. First known as the Fenians. It was reorganzied as the Irish Republican Brotherhood in 1873 and formally became the current IRA in 1918 to 1919. I.R.B.Irish Republican Brotherhood, the Fenians, set up in 1858 as a revolutionary movement. LoyalistsLoyal to the Union, these are the Ulster Protestants opposed to a thirtytwo county Ireland. (Same as Unionists).\ 83

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Orange Order(Orangeman) Name taken from the victory ofProtestant William of Orange over Catholic King James IT. A powerful sectarian order of Protestants characterized by ritualistic pageantry and supremacist celebrations. Provisionals(Provos) Now the major IRA force. RepublicansSupporting a thirty-two county Ireland. (Catholics). RU.C.-Royal Ulster Constabulary. Police force for Northern Ireland. S.D.L.P.Social Democratic and Labor Party. Support the necessity of majority consent in Northern Ireland. It is largely middle class. (Catholic). Sinn Fein"Ourselves Alone." Political party and wing of the Provisional IRA Mainly supported by working class Catholics. Six CountiesSix of the nine counties which make up the province ofUlster. Thirty-Two CountiesThe Republic of Ireland and the Six Counties-a united Ireland. U.D.A-Ulster Defense Association. The major Protestant paramilitary group in Northern Ireland. U.D.R-Ulster Defense Regiment. Another Protestant paramilitary organization. U.F.F.Ulster Freedom Fighters. A UDA group claiming responsibility for several sectarian murders. Ulster1bis should correspond to tl;le ancient nine-county province ofUlster. The term is now erroneouSly synonymous with the Six-Counties in Northern Ireland claimed by the Unionists. UnionistsThose supporting the 1800 Act ofUnion when Ireland became a part of the United Kingdom and totally opposed to any breaking of ties of the Six Counties with Britain. (Loyalists). U.V.F.Ulster Volunteer Force. It is a Protestant paramilitary group who have claimed responsibility for several sectarian killings. 84

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BIBLIOGRAPHY Adams, Gerry 1994 Free Ireland: Towards Lasting Peace. Roberts Rinehart Publishers,P.O. Box 666, Niwot, Colorado 80544. Barr, Glen 1994 The Loyalist Agenda in The Edge of the Union: The Ulster Loyalist Political Vision. Steve Bruce, author. Pg. 102. Oxford University Press Inc., New York. Berreman, Gerald D. 1977 Social Barrier: Caste, Class and Race in Cross-Cultural Perspectives. Papers in Anthropology 18 (2): 217-242. Bruce, Steve 1994 The Edge of the Union. The Ulster Loyalist Political Vision. Oxford University Press. Bell, J. Bowyer 1992 IRA Tactics and Targets. Poolberg Press Ltd. Dublin, Ireland Cohen, Abner 1992 Political Symbolism Annual Review of Anthropology 8:87-113 In Paths to Domination, Resistance, and Terror. Pg. 25. Carolyn Nordstrom and Joann Martin eds. University of California Press. Berkeley, Los Angeles, Oxford. Coogan, Tim Pat 1987 Disillusioned Decades, Ireland 1966-87. Gill and Macmillan Ltd. Dublin, Ireland. Coogan, Tim Pat 1993 The IRA: A Histozy. Roberts Rinehart Publishers. Niwot, Colorado. Coser, Lewis 1992 The Anthropology of Conflict In The Paths to Domination, Resistance and Terror. Pg.22. Carolyn Nordstrom and Joann Martin eds. University of California Press. Berkeley, Los Angeles, 85

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Oxford. Coser, Lewis 1992 Structures of Authority. In The Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences. PP. 232-236. D. Sills ed. New York: Crowell, Collins and MacMillan. Crenshaw, Martha 1995 Terrorism in Context. University Press, University Park, Pennsylvania. Martha Crenshaw, editor. Ralf 1992 Structural :functionalism and the Conflict Theory Alternatives. In Sociological Theory. Pg. 263. George Ritzer ed. McGraw-Hill Publishers. De Baroid, Ciaran 1989 Ballymwphy and the Irish. War. Pluto Press, London N65AA and Irish Books and Media, USA Friedman, Milton 1987 Visions of Equality. In A Conflict ofVisions:Ideological Origins ofPolitical Struggles. Thomas Sowell, author. Pg. 122. William Martin and Co. Inc. Publishers. New York. Laquer, Walter 1987 The Age of Terrorism Little, Brown and Company, Boston, Toronto and London. Lipset, Seymour 1990 Consensus and Conflict: Essays on Political Sociology. Transaction Publishers, New Brunswick (USA) and London (UK). Moss, Robert 1971 Urban Guenillas. Nieburg, HL. 1969 Political Violence. In Paths to Domination, Resistance and Terror. Pg. 9. Carolyn Nordstrom and Joann Martin eds. University of California. Berkeley, Los Angeles, Oxford. Nordstrom, Carolyn and Martin, Joann 1992 The Paths to Domination, Resistance, and Terror. University of 86

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California Press. Carolyn Nordstrom and JoAnn Martin editors. Ritzer, George 1992 Contemporary Sociological Theozy. McGraw-Hill Inc. Publishers. Ritzer, George 1992 Sociological Theory. McGraw-Hill Inc. Publishers. Sands, Bobby 1981 Prison quote during hunger strike. Sowell, Thomas 1987 A Conflict of Visions: Ideological origins of Political Struggles. Quill, William Morrow Publisher, New York. Sluka, Jefferey 1992 The Anthropology of Conflict. In The Paths to Dominatio!l, Resistance and Terror. pp. 21-31. Carolyn Nordstrom and Joann Martin eds. University of California Press. Berkeley, Los Angeles, Oxford. Sluka, Jefferey 1992 Political Murals in Northern Ireland. In The Paths to Dominatio!l, Resistance and Terror. Carolyn Nordstrom and Joann Martin eds. University of California Press. Berkeley, Los Angeles, Oxford. Smith, M.L.R. 1995 Fighting for Ireland The Military Strategy of the Irish Republican Movement. Routledge Publishers, London and New York. Spencer, Tony 1989 The Early Days. In Ballymur;phy and the Irish War. Ciarann De Baroid author. pg.11. Pluto Press, London N65AA. Irish Books and Media. USA Weber, Max 1992 Class, Status and Party and Structures of Authority. In Sociological Theocy. George Ritzer ed. PP. 127-129. McGraw-Hill Publishers. 87