History Of Ireland Essay Example

The Nationalist marching season, sometimes known as ‘the twelfth’, ‘Orangemen’s Day’ and ‘Boyne celebrations’, takes place on the 12th July throughout Northern Ireland, but why does it take place? The first reason I will be investigating is the Battle of the Boyne.

This event took place in July 1690 when William of Orange claimed victory over the catholic King James II after James’ attempt to reclaim his English thrown by invading Ireland in an effort to build support for his cause.Despite William of Orange’s apparently perfect ‘Protestant hero qualities’, their reasons for the march may not be entirely accurate. For example, William did not defeat James in the aid of the struggling Protestants but to eliminate James’ threat on his path to defeating Louis XIV. The fact that Protestants choose to ignore this is called selective history because they are choosing bits of history that suit their cause.

Having said this, the event inspired Protestants and Unionists and made William of Orange, or King Billy, their hero because he rescued them from being driven out by the Catholics, it also has a direct impact on the formation of groups such as the Orange Order who are the organizers of the marches during the marching season and the main body of the Unionist and Protestant faith. As you can see in source ‘A’, the Orangemen wear orange neck-pieces to celebrate William of Orange’s and Protestants as a whole’s success.The battle of the Boyne is celebrated because of its victory over Catholics. It therefore represents Protestant ascendancy and supremacy over the Catholics and the march takes place to demonstrate this power as a way of saying ‘we have the power to do this, so we will’.

This also explains why the march still continues year after year and follows the same route through Catholic territory because if it did stop or redirect for whatever reason it would undermine their authority, making them appear weak and the Catholics look as if their power is increasing.To help maintain their dominance they also intimidate the Catholics by marching through predominantly Catholic areas and chanting anti-Catholic songs, such as, ‘slaughter the Papists one by one’. From this lyric it is clear that the march does not attempt to unite the communities but instead is rubbing the power of the Protestants in the Catholic’s faces and in doing this, they are celebrating their identity. Having said this, the march is more celebrating the power they once had, since after the Good Friday Agreement their superiority has slipped away.

Therefore the march is a symbol of the Protestant’s nostalgic memories of the supremacy over the Catholics. Occasionally, tension between the marchers and Catholics results in violence. This risk creates a lot of pressure on the authorities to deal with the march and a lot of public attention is turned towards the march in newspapers and television. This publicity and fuss over the marches has resulted in spurring the Protestants on, because without it the Protestants would not be proving their supremacy to anyone and therefore its significance would be eradicated and they may not feel the need to march through Catholic areas or even at all.

Question 2 Bloody Sunday took place on Sunday 30th January 1972, when a civil rights march of over 15,000 people gathered in Londonderry city centre. The area was sealed off by the British Parachute regiment, 1 Para. This action was met with stones being thrown at them from some of the marchers, soon after this 1 Para opened fire on the marchers, killing 14 of them all of whom were unarmed and many of whom were shot in the back. The soldiers claimed that they were shot at first by paramilitaries, and they were simply returning fire but reports from the marchers deny this.

This event created tension because according to almost all of the demonstrators 1 Para were not provoked in any way, ‘there was no provocation whatsoever, they just seemed to fire in all directions’, this quotation is from Father Daly who was an eyewitness to the event, the way they ‘seemed to fire in all directions’ could suggest that they weren’t trying resist an attack but merely shooting randomly, this makes it look to the Irish that the British troops were killing innocent Irishmen for the sake of it.This source could be seen as reliable because he is a priest and is probably honest and truthful, but on the other hand the fact that he is a Catholic priest could lead him to be biased against the British armed forces because he may not want them in Ireland. Having said this, it will cause the Irish to be very angry and they will think of the British as murderous and heartless people which will increase tension between them.The Irish people turned on them as they saw them not as protectors of Ireland but instead as the enemy.

The events also created tension when the enquiry was carried out into the events of Bloody Sunday. It was carried out by Lord Widgery, an English barrister, who lead the enquiry and put together the final report that was supposed to have used the evidence provided to draw an accurate conclusion on the events of the day.When the report was finished, it strongly defended the British parachute regiment, despite their actions killing 14 unarmed demonstrators The strongest criticism of 1 Para was that their actions were ‘bordering the reckless’. Of course, the Irish Nationalists were outraged; they saw the enquiry as a cover-up and a white wash.

The members of 1 Para were not to face any disciplinary action as the report accepted that the British soldiers were shot at before their retaliation despite the fact that the evidence against them from eye witness accounts was immense.The anger felt by the Irish Nationalists created an enormous amount of tension between the two countries, and as well as this, it lead many Nationalists towards more extreme methods of expressing their nationalistic views because the anger that they felt towards the British made them want take more effective action to get the British soldiers and British rule out of Ireland. The increase in extremism also created tension because there was an increase in violence between the countries which will weaken their relations. Not only were the Irish angry, but people were outraged all over the world.

An example of this is the way that America’s funding for the IRA increased, this meant that the IRA would have the money to make the organization more powerful and therefore be a larger threat to Britain, making the tension between the two countries increase. The enquiry into bloody Sunday was reopened in April 1998 by newly elected English Prime Minister Tony Blair. This is an important event in the Bloody Sunday time line because it suggests that the English government itself is aware of the fact that the previous enquiry by Lord Widgery may not have been accurate or objective.This could increase the tension between Ireland and England because the Nationalists could perceive this to be England admitting to the murder of the 14 innocent marchers and therefore confirming their doubts and mistrust, adding to the resentment felt towards England.

Having said this, the new enquiry also reduced tension because the fact it was re-opened shows that the British government was prepared to accept their mistakes in an attempt to reunite the two countries.This could have been the first step in a peace process as England would hope that this act of acceptance would encourage Irish Nationalists to do the same and in doing so start a new, clean and peaceful slate. The enquiry could also have helped ease tension because it would take away many extreme Nationalists reasons to use violence because they could no longer justify aggression towards a new, reformed England which recognized its past mistakes.

America In The 1950’s – The Age Of Affluence

Despite the overall perception of economic prosperity during the 1950s, some individuals were unable to benefit from this apparent affluence.

In 1952, Dwight D. Eisenhower assumed the presidency of the United States, signifying the first Republican Government in America in twenty years. Following the war, the nation experienced prosperity and a post-war “Baby boom” from 1945 to 1960 that led to a population surge of 40 million individuals, equating to a 30% expansion. This brought the total population to 179,323,175. Additionally, throughout the 1950s, the gross national product (GNP), which quantifies the value of all domestically produced goods and services, nearly doubled.

In terms of manufacturing, Americans produced more than 50% of global goods. Moreover, consumer goods were widespread among various individuals. Back in 1948, merely 50% of the population possessed a car; however, by 1956, this number rose to nearly 75% for families. Similarly, the prevalence of televisions surged during this time period. Compared to previous years when only a few families owned one, over 80% had a television set in their homes in 1956.

The population experienced an increase in land ownership, leading to more luxuries like extra markets and discos. Additionally, there were significant improvements in employment opportunities and wages. In particular, wages saw a 240% rise from 1948 to 1946. Consequently, unemployment ceased to be a challenge.

Although there was a small increase in unemployment in 1954, potentially due to the influx of immigrants, Americans enjoyed the highest global standard of living. In comparison to life in Britain during the 60s, American life was three times superior. The triumph of America was widely communicated to millions around the world through movies and magazines.

Although there was an abundance of supermarkets, discos, freeways, and television shows in American society, a significant portion of the population lived below the poverty level. This underclass, comprising 22% of Americans, particularly concentrated in inner cities.

During the War, women faced the issue of being stereotyped and a significant number of them lost their jobs to men. This happened even if the women were performing well, as preference was given to retaining male employees.


In the 20th century, the United States of America had a prosperous period. Most citizens became homeowners, as houses were affordable at $100. Unemployment rates decreased, enabling many people to own cars, televisions, and other electronics. Additionally, the country made significant financial gains from its extensive exports.

The country was thriving economically, with impressive salaries and advanced technology. Furthermore, it boasted a plethora of discos, markets, and freeways.

Despite accounting for more than half of global production, a significant portion of the American population remained in a developmental stage. African Americans within American society experienced discrimination and did not receive the same level of respect as others. Many individuals lacked the financial means to cover medical expenses. Additionally, women who had demonstrated their exceptional abilities during wartime were confined to traditional gender roles focused on household duties.

The First World War – Source Questions On Field Marshall Haig

Source B and C are both very different extracts, both have their elements of trustworthiness and of doubt.

Source B for example was written during the war, before and after the battle of the Somme. Where as source C was written many years after the event, giving source B slightly more respectability, as it might be a more accurate reflection of events. In saying that though, source C is written by a private, who more than likely had first hand experience of the battle, it is therefore a first hand account.Source B is written by General Haig he was not involved first hand in the battle, but was informed of the nature of the battle and the outcome, it is possible that Haig might have been informed poorly or was generalizing some what.

Source C might also; possibly have been at a specific area of the battle, in which it did not go to plan, giving a reason for the contradiction of Haig’s source. It is also not clear what the intent of Haig’s report was, whether it was a diary, Haig’s real opinion or whether it might have been written to boost the morale of his troops, as a form of propaganda. In which case Source C would be considered more trustworthy.Answer C:Both sources D and E either mention or imply, General Haig, but neither refers to the Battle of The Somme directly.

Source D mentions Haig’s name, and source E implies the naivety of a certain general in cartoon form, implying Haig. Both sources have their uses to historians studying Haig, and the Battle of The Somme, as both sources express an opinion about Haig and the Somme, which is not entirely without use, as they both, raise issues about Haig as a general. Source D is a piece of comedy and its real purpose is to amuse an audience not inform historians on the nature of Haig and the Somme. Behind all the laughs, the point being made is that Haig’s proposal of the imminent Battle of the Somme, and the way it will be carried out is fundamentally wrong.

Source E’s point is that battles work well in practice, but when it comes to the real thing, and there is no general to make sure things run accordingly, things therefore go wrong. It too is useful as it was published in 1917 closer to the time of the event, and is not supposed to be such a comical source as source D. Still though it cannot be taken too seriously or taken as evidence as it is a cartoon. Both sources have a little use to historians studying Haig and The Somme.

Answer D:Sources G and H do not necessarily prove that source F is Wrong. They maybe suggesting that source F is Incorrect and have a different opinion on Haig and the battle of the Somme, but do not prove source F wrong. Source G is Taken from a German book, about the First World War and as the enemy, they are going to have a very different opinion to the allies. They are also not going to make the enemy sound bad after loosing the battle, and are going to have their own interpretation on how they lost the battle.

Source H is Written by a British general he is going to have his own opinions about the war, as it states that he fought in the war, therefore he will have had first hand experience.As a general he would be aware of the of the problems of being a general and might be writing with the benefit of hindsight and the knowledge that overall the Somme and Haig’s leader ship were influential in winning the war. However, what the general says could be thought of as wrong, quote “Haig’s armies, which had complete confidence in the leadership of their commander Haig.” It is clear from other sources and from my contextual knowledge that many soldiers had completely the opposite opinion and did not have any confidence in the leadership of their commander Haig.

Source G also comes from the official history of the First World War, giving it more respectability. Source F the source which both G and H contradict, comes from the, “British Butchers and Bunglers of World War.” Also has no author. Therefore making it more of an opinion than something, which could be used as evidence.

Answer E:Sources J and I differ so dramatically primarily because of the time scale involved between the two extracts. Source I was written after the battle in 1916, after he had visited the area. It is a very brief statement on the battle overall, it could be said that source I is not his real opinion and is based upon information that has been reported to him by generals, or that possibly the sources use was to raise morale amongst soldiers and the public. Lloyd George has also not had first hand experience of the battle, as he only visited the battlefield, the source is therefore not a true account of event.

Source J on the other hand is written in the 1930’s much later, here Lloyd George is writing the source with the benefit of hindsight, and is written as a memoir. His opinion has totally changed in this source, possibly because it is a memoir and it is a true reflection of the events of the Somme, and is his real opinion. Hindsight is an important factor, as over a period of time discussing the Battle with others his opinion might have changed, he now believed that overall the Battle of the Somme was pointless a waste of lives.Answer F:The sources in terms of those, which are pro Haig and those, which are against Haig, support the view that Haig was wrong.

As six sources suggest this and four support Haig. That is the conclusion all the sources come to. However, it is clear from an in-depth reading and studying of the sources that this is not entirely convincing. For example, there can be as many sources favoring Haig as you like or as many against him, but this does not necessarily prove that, “Haig was an uncaring general who sacrificed his soldiers for no good reason.

” There was a very good reason for Haig sending men to the front and that was to try to win the war.Source A for example is against Haig, even though written by Haig, it says “The nation must be prepared to see heavy casualty lists” and “Victories to be won without the sacrifice of men’s lives.” Though Haig here is implying that a lot of soldiers will perish, it does not mention that he is an uncaring general. He is saying that it is a necessity that men are sacrificed other wise battles will not be won.

Source C is another source against Haig, although primarily the source is written to tell people how bad the battle was and how poorly planned the attack was, “How did the planners imagine that tummies would get through the wire.”It does not prove Haig was an uncaring general, and does not justify that Haig sacrificed his men for no good reason. The source is suggesting though that Haig was unprepared for the Battle and did not know what his soldiers would face. However, it is known as a fact, from contextual knowledge that Haig prepared thoroughly for all battles and knew exactly what his soldiers would face.

Source D is one of the two sources, which suggests that Haig was Uncaring and sacrificed soldiers for no good reason. This is clear from the last speech bubble, which says, “You mean are we all going to get killed?” -“Yes. Clearly Field Marshall Haig is about to make yet another giant effort to move his drinks cabinet six inches closer to Berlin.” Although the source has some respectability its purpose is to entertain people not to be a reliable historical source therefore it cannot be taken too seriously.

Source F is the other source, which really suggests that Haig was Uncaring and sacrificed men for no reason. However, this too has unreliability’s about it. Primarily the source comes from, “The British Bunglers of War” book. The purpose of this book is to make a bad example of generals like Haig and give them a bad name.

In saying that it is more reliable than source, D because it is based upon historical evidence, and is not designed as an outright comedy source.Source E is also against Haig, and questions his ability as a general but the source is similar to D in the respect that its purpose is to entertain an audience because it is a cartoon, therefore it to cannot be taken too seriously. Nevertheless, there is an element of truth in what is being said.Source J similarly to the other sources has its problems.

It is contradicted by the same man who wrote it in the previous source, source I. In source, I Lloyd George supports Haig but in source J, he is against Haig. Source J does not prove that Haig was uncaring and did not care for the lives of his men.All the sources which are against Haig, do not prove that was Haig uncaring, and did not care for the lives of his men.

Only two sources state that Haig was uncaring, but they are not totally trust worthy. The other four against Haig, cannot be fully trusted either and the sources in favor of Haig support him.The sources do support the view that “Haig was an uncaring general who sacrificed the lives of his men for no good reason.” Quite a long way, but none of the sources against Haig prove him this.

To prove him such a man would involve the use of hard evidence in the form of facts, or examples of Hag blatantly showing himself to be uncaring and a poor general.

error: Content is protected !!