A CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT IN NORTHERN IRELAND AND THE UNRESOLVED LEGACY ISSUE

Author: 

Edward M. Neafsey

  1. Introduction

In his First Inaugural Address, President Abraham Lincoln said: “Wherever [the people] shall grow weary of the existing government, they can exercise their constitutional right of amending it, or their revolutionary right to dismember and overthrow it.”  These insightful words provide an apt description of a tumultuous period (1968-72) in Northern Ireland’s history.  It was the start of “the Troubles.”  This four-year period began with the Northern Ireland nonviolent civil rights movement calling for government reform.  It ended with the rise of the Irish Republican Army (IRA) and Northern Ireland on the verge of civil war. Read more.