The Belfast Troubles 'They Listen to Heavy Metal?!'
As promised I wanted to share some of the historical facts of Belfast with you.
As some of you may know the Belfast troubles is something that has only recently settled down. Although some say that there is still tension within the city. I'll give you the short version of the story;
The Belfast Troubles are a result of a long time suppression of the Irish Catholic community by the Protestant community. However, this is not a religious war but a political one. Therefore the Catholics are rather called republicans and the protestants are called the loyalists or unionists.
The republicans (Irish Republican Army, IRA) were fighting for a united Ireland and for the British rule to end in North Ireland.
When Britain sent over the army to maintain order (however they were in fact neutral to the conflict) the IRA perceived this to be a threat and instead of maintaining order the IRA responded with increased violence. On several occassions they bombed loyalist public buildings and took the fight even to Britain.
The Troubles ended by both parties signing the Belfast Agreement also known as the Good Friday Agreement.
The 'scars' the conflict has left on the city can still be seen. As I live on Broadway/Fallsroad this is in West Belfast, the part that was always Catholic. Some of the poor areas are just a few blocks away from my street. Also there are a lot of murals (wandschilderingen) to be admired around the city. The loyalists and republican used these to 'mark' their territory. I will try to upload some pictures. Today I learned in class that the loyalists adopted 'Eddie' to paint in their murals. Some of you heavy metal listeners might know Eddie, he is the face of the album covers of Iron Maiden.
Well now all of you know something about the background of the city.
Miss you all!