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Conflict in Northern Ireland

The History, the Problem and the Challenge


Donald P. Doumitt

Political, economic, social, psychological, literary and religious factors have influenced Protestants and Catholics toward violence in Northern Ireland since 1969. Such violence emanates from an unjust social order where little has changed since 1921. Issues pertaining to political powersharing with the Catholic minority and dis- crimination in the allocation of jobs and housing are presented. Ulster's troubles are viewed as conditions in which long-standing Protestant-Catholic interests are exploited by demagogues to defend or attack the status quo. Sectarian propagandists capitalize on Protestant-Catholic fears and maintain a divided population. Efforts to reach out across the religious divide while achieving a revived economy are possible remedies toward a peaceful solution.
Contents: The clash of Irish Republican Army and loyalist nationalisms stem from wider political and economic interests that are magnified by religious differences. Sectarian politics keeps Northern Irelan divided.