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The Troubles

The most bloody attack since the Good Friday Agreement in 1998 occurred out of the blue in the small town of Omagh in 1998. 250 kilos of explosive killed 29 people amongst them many school children.

Mural of Bloody Sunday. Photo.

You can find an easy version of the text here: The Troubles, Texts in Brief - Overview

The Troubles

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The Troubles

The Plantation

Writing on wall. Photo.
The writing on this wall suggests that it is all a matter of liking each other. Is it really that simple to solve a conflict? An

The conflict in Northern Ireland is complicated and not easy to explain. In 1169, the Catholic King Henry II of England invaded Ireland, and all of Ireland became a part of the UK. The Irish were not too pleased with this and gave the English trouble again and again. In the 1600s, the English sent settlers from England and Scotland to Ulster, the northern region of Ireland. This act is known as the plantation. The English and the Scots had turned to Protestantism in 1536, and the settlers were "planted" to control and convert the Irish Catholics to Protestantism. Obviously, this did not reduce the anger of the Irish and their resistance was fierce, causing Oliver Cromwell to invade Ireland in 1649. Apart from killing one out of four Catholics, he denied the survivors any civil rights. After the Battle of the Boyne in 1690, the Protestants' grasp was further strengthened when the Protestant William of Orange beat the Catholic James II. The Irish Catholics remained discriminated against and suppressed well into the 19th century!

The Partition

The island of Ireland now has two flags. The tricolour of the Republic of Ireland (Eire) symbolises an independent republic and Northern Ireland (Ulster) shares the Union Jack with England, Scotland and Wales. This can be explained by the historical trail culminating in the Easter Rising in 1916 when the Irish Republican Army (IRA) revolted to put an end to British rule. The War of Independence from 1919 – 1921 ended in the partition of Ireland in 1922. 26 counties in the south made up the Irish Free State, whereas the six counties in the northern part had to remain in the union, much to the dismay of the Catholics who constituted the minority. Fuelled by growing frustration over social and economic injustice and the ideas of civil rights movements around the world, the anger and distress culminated in the Troubles. This was a period from the late 1960s until the ratification of the Good Friday Agreement in 1998. The main opponents in the conflicts were the IRA (the Irish Republican Army) , a militant anti-British faction of Catholics, and UVF (Ulster Volunteer Force), a militant anti-Catholic faction fighting to remain in the union with Britain. The aggression exploded on Bloody Sunday.

Mural of Bloody Sunday. Photo.
Mural of Bloody Sunday

In the song dedicated to this tragic incident, U2 states:

And the battle's just begun
There’s many lost, but tell me who has won
The trench is dug within our hearts
And mothers, children, brothers, sisters torn apart

Sunday, bloody Sunday
Sunday, bloody Sunday

Bloody Sunday

Sunday 30 January 1972 will never be forgotten. It started as a peaceful demonstration in Londonderry against the internment of Catholics and ended with 26 civilians injured and killed by the British Army.

Good Friday Agreement

The Good Friday Agreement in 1998 was hailed as one of the former British Prime Minister Tony Blair’s greatest accomplishments. A cease-fire was agreed upon by most of the political parties in Northern Ireland and the British and Irish Government. They committed themselves to use only democratic and peaceful means. In spite of some dissident groups that continue the fight, the Belfast Agreement in 1998 seems to be the most effective effort to end decades, and even centuries of conflicts and disagreements.

Tasks and Activities

Match the Dates

The Troubles - drag and drop (node 1129)

Discussion

  1. Bloody Sunday is a very important day for Catholics to remember? Besides the actual events and tragic deaths - why do you think it is so important to them to keep this day alive?
  2. Search the Internet for information about Bobby Sands. Discuss what effect his fate has had on Catholics.
  3. How important is the continued remembrance of old martyrs and victims to the continuation of the conflict? Would it be better to clear away the murals and only look forwards - or do we need to keep the past alive to improve our society?
  4. Watch the video clip below. It is from the wall still dividing Belfast. What do the inscriptions and graphics mean? Which side of the city is this - Protestant or Catholic?
The Wall Dividing Belfast

Web Search

Search for U2 and "Bloody Sunday" on the web. See if you can find any video clips of it. Also see if you can find the lyrics.

  • What is this song about?
  • Can music be part of social change or is it just entertainment?

Research

The most bloody attack since the Good Friday Agreement in 1998 occurred out of the blue in the small town of Omagh in 1998. 250 kilos of explosive killed 29 people amongst them many school children. By this time the IRA itself had decided to disarm and join a political process of reconciliation. Those who planted the bomb called themselves The Real IRA. Use the Internet to find out whether this group has been active lately or not.

Suggested Further Activity

The Orange and the Green

The Troubles - Tasks

Northern Ireland Resources - Overview

Learning content

The British Isles

What is core content and additional content?
SubjectEmne

Fagstoff

  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    The UK

  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    An Introduction to England

  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    A Closer Look at England

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    An Introduction to Scotland

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    A Closer Look at Scotland

  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    An Introduction to Wales

  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    A Closer Look at Wales

  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    An Introduction to Northern Ireland

  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    A Closer Look at Northern Ireland

  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    An Introduction to Ireland

  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Easy Text - The UK

    Additional content is a subject that is not on the curriculum
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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Easy Text - An Intro. to England

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    London

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    Liverpool

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    Manchester

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    Cambridge

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    The North - South Divide

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    The Faces of London

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Easy Text - An intro. to Scotland

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Braveheart

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Bobby - the Faithful Dog from Edinburgh

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Easy Text - An intro. to Wales

    Additional content is a subject that is not on the curriculum
    AdditionalTilleggstoff
  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Easy Text - An intro. to Northern Ireland

    Additional content is a subject that is not on the curriculum
    AdditionalTilleggstoff
  • Additional content is a subject that is not on the curriculum
    AdditionalTilleggstoff
  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    The Troubles, Introduction - Text in Brief

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    The Troubles, History - Text in Brief

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    The Troubles, 1960s to Today - Text in Brief

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    The Orange and the Green

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Flags in Northern Ireland

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Radio Play: Into Exile

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Dublin

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Irish Proverbs

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    Molly Malone

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  • SubjectMaterialFagstoff

    Frank McCourt: Angela's Ashes

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SubjectEmne

Oppgaver og aktiviteter

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    UK Quiz - General Knowledge

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    England Quiz

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    Task - Match place and description

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    Plan a Holiday in Scotland

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    Task: Bobby - the faithful dog...

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    Wales Quiz

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    Northern Ireland Quiz

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    Tasks - The Troubles

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    Tasks: Into Exile

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    Task: Molly Malone

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    Quiz Molly Malone

  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    Edinburgh Castle

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  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    Loch Ness

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  • TasksAndActivitiesOppgaver og aktiviteter

    In the Name of the Father (film)

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SubjectEmne

Kildemateriale

  • SharedResourceDelte ressurser

    The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill and Came Down a Mountain

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