Ulster Border Eleven

Resistance to binary US versus THEM

Insights into Ulster Border tensions have been transformed by Irish Times journalist, Freya Mc Clements @freyamcc from Derry. Her interviews and insights give insights into the frustration of people like Jim Wilson, a former member of a loyalist paramilitary group now a community worker who seeks “to calm tensions caused by the controversy over the Northern Ireland protocol”  in the #Brexit agreement. (Irish Times 20/02/21)

Tensions over #Article 16 are much less apparent along the rural Ulster land Border and we will resist a return to violence. Joint entry of the UK and Ireland into the #EU on 1st January 1973 changed our lives and the European compulsion to modernise the Irish State became an important factor in the PEACE Agreement of 1998.

During the “Troubles” the economic impact of the EU was overshadowed by army checkpoints on the border and by eruptions of violence. In the decades before this, the tensions of partition had faded into comic smuggling stories where we hid butter, cigarettes, or whiskey in our clothing and the 1956 IRA campaign did not gain traction. Rigid divisions between Nationalist and Unionist left no place for those of us who do not accept this binary compulsion.

100 years after partition, cross border relations are once again threatened by  #Brexit with confusion over #Article 16 bringing chaos and uncertainty. The ports of Belfast and Larne became major flashpoints distracting from the land border meandering through rural Ulster which would be impossible to maintain as an EU border. How to solve our dilemma? It is clear that violence has never solved anything, www.qub.ac.uk lectures on anniversary of partition

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