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31,782. The Act of Union had given Catholics economic power but their political destiny remained in the hands of London. (Ireland & United Kingdom & Empire UK) Fergal Keane, The Story of Ireland: Age of Nations 5/5
31,684. The idea of two nations in Ireland is revolting and hateful. The idea of our agreeing to the partition of our nation is unthinkable. (Ireland & Northern Ireland & United Kingdom) John Redmond, Nationalist leader 11th April 1912
31,687. No man has a right to fix the boundary of the march of a nation; no man has a right to say to his country – thus far shalt thou go and no further. (Ireland & Northern Ireland & United Kingdom) Charles Stewart Parnell, speech Cork 21st January 1885
31,727. In January 1919 Sinn Fein declared Ireland’s independence and formed its own parliament, the Doyle. This was an assault on the Empire as well as the United Kingdom. Michael Collins set up an elite team of IRA assassins known as the 12 Apostles. They efficiently targeted British troops and collaborators. The British responded with a MI5 team of British agents, known as the Cairo Gang. In November 1919 Collins set out to destroy them. At 8 one Sunday morning the 12 Apostles burst into eight houses and shot fourteen British agents dead ... Now the violence spread in all directions. Sinn Fein and the Doyle were outlawed. British forces stormed through Ireland. After 18 months of terror Eamon de Valera and Lloyd George agreed to a truce. Talks began in October 1921. De Valera stayed at home and ordered Collins to join the Irish delegation in London. If he came back with less than Sinn Fein’s full demands, Collins knew he’d be the scapegoat. As the negotiations began, he said to a fellow Republican, ‘You might say the trap is sprung.’ The talks moved towards a compromise: with Ireland self-governing but still inside the British Empire, and with the six predominantly Protestant northern counties free to choose to remain within the United Kingdom. After nearly two months the Irish delegation was still agonising over the deal. With a theatrical flourish Lloyd George arrived brandishing two envelopes: one contained the agreements and the other the refusal to come to terms. ‘If I send this letter,’ he said, ‘it’s war. And war within three days. Will you give peace or war to your country? We must have your answer by ten p.m. tonight.’ One by one the Irish representatives signed the agreements. Michael Collins believed he was giving Ireland something it had wanted for seven hundred years. But that night in his lodgings he wrote, ‘This morning I have signed my death warrant.’ (Ireland & Northern Ireland & United Kingdom) Andrew Marr, The Making of Modern Britain
31,728. Britain was confronted by the single most violent act on British soil since the war. After the arrival of British troops in Northern Ireland in 1969 there had been increasing violence in the province. When Edward Heath introduced Internment without trial for suspected terrorists tension reached boiling point. On the 30th January 1972 a protest march was planned by the nationalist Catholic community of Londonderry or Derry ... From behind the barricades the orders went out to the Paras, Go and get ’em, and good luck ... And then it started: in barely thirty minutes thirteen civilians were dead ... Five of them were shot in the back ... The events around Bloody Sunday remain hotly disputed territory ... Before Bloody Sunday the IRA was comparatively puny and after it the violence spread in all directions. Within months an IRA bombing campaign was terrorising the mainland. (Ireland & Northern Ireland & United Kingdom & IRA & Internment) ibid.
98,088. This is the most dramatic and important democratic decision ever taken by the British people. But it leaves our country deeply divided. (Great Britain & United Kingdom & Democracy & Vote & Election & Division) Andrew Marr, The Andrew Marr Show 26 June 2016
98,089. This has been the rebellion of the diminished against the cocky, the ignored against the shapers of modern times, and the struggling against the strutting. (Great Britain & United Kingdom & Democracy & Vote & Election & Division) ibid.
31,867. This is the story of a secret British army unit set up to deal with enemies of the state on the streets of the United Kingdom. (Northern Ireland & United Kingdom) Britain’s Secret Terror Force, BBC 2013
31,868. The Unit carried out round the clock patrols of West Belfast. (Northern Ireland) ibid.
31,899. The place is still afflicted by 1,500 sectarian incidents annually. Some of the backstreets continue to resound with the noise of bricks hurled through windows; some Orange halls and Catholic premises on country roads are being damaged by arsonists, or defaced by hooligans who scrawl primitive messages of hate on their walls.
So although the war is over the conflict is not. The more historically-minded can point out that sectarianism long pre-dated the last troubles, and that the recent decades of conflict have of course added to the reservoirs of historical grievance, hurt and bitterness. Sadly, scores of tall peacelines continue to criss-cross Belfast; more sadly still, many of those who live in their shadow are quite content they should stay in place, certainly for the moment. While few actually approve of these towering symbols of division they have at least settled many localised territorial disputes: the concrete and metal of the walls dictate who lives where. (Northern Ireland & Great Britain) The Independent online article 14th September 2009 ‘The Lingering Sectarian Troubles of Northern Ireland’
31,655. The United Kingdom is a corporation: now up to February last year it was The United Kingdom PLC. In February it was dissolved, and they’ve never published their accounts ... They are now registered the United Kingdom Limited. John Harris, lecture Lawful Rebellion
31,656. The UK is currently the only European nation to have suspended Article 5 of the European Convention of Human Rights which prevents such detention ... Consider the cases of the following terrorists: Walter Wolfgang, the eighty-two-year-old pensioner removed from the Labour Party Conference in September 2005 for heckling Jack Straw, and then after he tried to gain re-entry, detained under the Terrorism Act; eight-year-old John Catt stopped by police for wearing a T-shirt suggesting that Bush and Blair be tried for war crimes - searched under the Terrorism Act; Sally Cameron arrested and held for four hours for walking on a cycle path in Dundee – under the Terrorism Act; Isabelle Ellis-Cockcroft stopped and searched under the Terrorism Act despite being eleven years old. (United Kingdom & Great Britain & England & Terrorism & War on Terrorism) Ludicrous Diversion: 7/7 Bombings
31,657. Ironically, it’s not the terrorists attacking our way of life but our own government. Through the expansion of police powers and stringent anti-terrorist measures being imposed upon Britain, they are using our fear for our safety to restrict our liberty and they are using their false promises of security to erode our privacy. This is happening now. And it’s happening to every person in the UK. (United Kingdom & Great Britain & England & Terrorism & War on Terrorism) ibid.
31,918. People in the United Kingdom and outside the United States share my bemusement with the United States that America doesn’t share with itself. Bill Hicks
31,919. If you hear Anarchy in the UK today your hair stands on end. It gives you the shivers. Vivienne Westwood
31,920. The thing about the UK is we don’t really make that many great movies. (United Kingdom & Film) Jason Statham
32,263. As Edward VIII he reigned for just three hundred and twenty six days before abdicating in disgrace. Best known for his affair and subsequent marriage to Wallis Simpson. (Edward VIII & Great Britain & England & United Kingdom) Edward VIII: The Traitor King, Channel 4 1995
32,264. Evidence has now emerged that he passed national secrets to foreign governments. And of his complicity with Adolf Hitler. And of his financial dealings. (Edward VIII & Great Britain & England & United Kingdom) ibid.
32,265. Edward had an abiding love for all things German. (Edward VIII & Great Britain & England & United Kingdom) ibid.
32,266. And frequently dodged his duties to have affairs usually with married women. (Edward VIII & Great Britain & England & United Kingdom & Affairs) ibid.
32,267. He soon gathered a new breed of courtier around him. (Edward VIII & Great Britain & England & United Kingdom) ibid.
32,268. Increasingly, Edward was seen as a security risk. (Edward VIII & Great Britain & England & United Kingdom) ibid.
32,269. Not one word of his affair had been reported to the British press. (Edward VIII & Great Britain & England & United Kingdom & Affairs) ibid.