Category Archives: Population

The influence of the Provisional IRA.

 In Ireland, there are two main groups of people: the Catholics and the Protestants. For several years there has been a constant battle between these two groups. This battle has gone on long enough that not a single living person in Ireland remembers peace. From the formation of the terrorist group known as the Provisional Irish Republican Army, there are examples of two religious group’s war for independence. A war that extends into the streets and involves everyone in Ireland. The historical political and social climates of Ireland are an example of how a religious group can cause political movements to form.

The IRA was, originally, a group of volunteers that fought for Ireland’s Independence from Britain from 1919-1921. They fought using guerrilla warfare and for a noble goal. When one mentions the IRA, the usual assumption is actually the Provisional IRA. In 1969 the Provisional IRA (aka the Provos IRA or PIRA) emerged from an ideological split with the original IRA. This difference in ideology was due to the PIRA believing in the value of violence. (Bishop pg. 117) They believed that in order for Ireland to become its own nation, the path must be paved in blood. Pictured above is a British soldier apprehending a member of the PIRA during the Bloody Sunday Incident. During this incident the PIRA was fired upon by the British military as well. These events increased the volunteer rate for the PIRA significantly, therefore enabling them to move forward with their agenda. Additionally, Bloody Sunday is considered the initial launch, of Ireland, into chaos. (Weinraub pgr. 1)

The religious ties of the PIRA are slightly abstract. In the interest of simplicity, Protestants of Ireland have historically supported the reign of the United Kingdoms over Ireland, while the Catholics are more Irish Nationalists. Historically speaking, extreme nationalism usually results in war. This example is in accord with that trend. Furthermore, the PIRA is primarily composed, led, and infused with volunteers that are Catholic. Since the Bloody Sunday Incident the PIRA has continued its terrorist form of war in Ireland. It has even lead to other splinter terrorist organizations such as the Real IRA and the Continuity IRA. These groups do not appear to be going away and even started from something noble, such as a religious group’s desire for an independent nation. the Bloody Sunday Incident the PIRA has continued its terrorist form of war in Ireland. It has even lead to other splinter terrorist organizations such as the Real IRA and the Continuity IRA. These groups do not appear to be going away and even started from something noble, such as a religious group’s desire for an independent nation.

Pictured in the map below, is Northern Ireland. This is the home of the IRA and has been for many years. Their headquarters resides in Belfast. Belfast is located on the tip of sea inlet, named Belfast Lough. One possible reason for choosing this location is that Belfast is the administrative capital of Northern Ireland. Another reason may be that the Belfast Lough, lough being the Irish word for sea inlet or lake, provides Belfast with direct access to the North Channel. From there a ship can travel to the North Atlantic Ocean and then to anywhere in the world.

From the noble roots of the IRA, to the split of the PIRA and the subsequent fall of the political climate of Northern Ireland, there are illustrations of a once good idea, turned sour by extremism. While there is no clear proof that this is religious extremism, there is a strong suggestion that the PIRA is a religious group. As with many cases, the truth is intricate and too broad a scope to be distilled into a few paragraphs. However, there is evidence here that suggests a religious movement, when out of control, can turn the tides of a country. Irelands future is uncertain, but for now the news is not filled with stories of tragedy coming from the IRA. Hopefully, this uncertain peace can resolve into a better future, for Northern Ireland, and Ireland as a nation.

Works Cited

Bishop, Patrick, and Eamonn Mallie. The Provisional IRA. London: Corgi, 1988. Print.

 Weinraub, Bernard. “Bloody Friday—It Was the Worst Yet.” Terrorism: Essential Primary           Sources. Ed. K. Lee Lerner and Brenda Wilmoth Lerner. Detroit: Gale, 2006. 128-131.           Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 17 Nov. 2013

Reviewed by:

Jacob Standafer
Oren Paisner
Jennah Reiman

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Shooting ourselves in the foot: Detrimental effects on all, from the mistreatment of some.

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          Prosperity and wealth, health and longevity, education and status–these are things universally pursued and desired.  The efforts to improve a society’s development in areas such as power, wealth, and prestige is a continuous and often obscure process.  There are a great many facets of development that factor into why a country is or is not continuing to grow and improve as a whole.  Some of the obstacles to a people’s improvement are issues such as a higher population growth than can be supported by the current wealth of the country and harsh economic habitations which inhibit the ability to flourish without great struggle.  One issue in particular is insidiously stifling due to its often-overlooked and self-inflicted existence, which is the issue of gender inequality, seen distinctly in the suppression and inferior treatment of women.

     The ill-effects of unequal treatment of women show themselves in different forms.  One rather obvious, yet overlooked fact, is that women make up almost half of the world’s population.  For every 100 women there are 101 men, which logically reveals that hurting women’s chances of success hurts half of humankind.  According to studies conducted by the UN, there is not a single country in existence where the treatment of women has been equal to that of men.  The inferior treatment of women is manifested in different areas, including the difficulty or complete illegality for women to establish and improve their economic situations, political voices, work-force presence, and physical health.

          An 18 year old girl named Nita, living in 1996 Kosovo, was captured and raped for several days by members of an invading Serbian militia.  Later tossed to the side of the road, she joined thousands of others fleeing the Serbs.  Desperate to reconnect with her family and former life, she accepted the offered assistance of a man who earned her trust, only to later ship her to Italy where she was sold into human trafficking.  She worked as a prostitute for 6 years, but unlike most in her situation, she had a break in her circumstances and was able to escape her owners.  Nita, pregnant for a second time, was eventually reunited with her husband.  On learning of her fate for the past 6 years, her husband threw her out of his home and back onto the streets.

          Nita’s fate is just one of millions of women who are at best overlooked, at worst oppressed and abused.  History reveals that women are viewed by many societies to have a lesser value than men, and are treated accordingly.  Restricted from education, proper healthcare, and a place in the professional workforce, the life that so many women are subjected to has lead to ignorance and poverty, the rapid spread of disease, and a higher population growth than that which many communities can sustain.  In developed countries where many women have a chance to expand their lifestyles beyond a mere breeding machine, the population growth is accordingly much lower than in most developing countries.

          While it is easy to get caught up in the many other factors inhibiting or advancing a country’s development, it should not be forgotten that the unequal treatment of women in society has deep and lasting damage on a community as a whole.  To promote competitiveness as a country in areas such as education, technological advancements, a sustainable population, and the health of its members, it behooves every community to consider the implications and damage they inflict on themselves by overlooking and mismanaging this valid issue.  To truly begin to excel and improve in development, every society must firmly suspend the tolerance of gender inequalities and seek to improve each and every member of their community. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sources Cited:

Rubenstein, James. The Cultural Landscape: An Introduction to Human Geography. Pearson Education Inc. 2014

The Central Intelligence Ageny of the United States. The World Fact Book. Central Intelligence Agency. 2013.

Wikimedia Commons. Discrepancy In Education. WomanStats. May 12, 2011.

Women for Women International. 2013.

O’Brien, Sean. www.womenpriests.org. 2013.

womenmed.wordpress.com. 2013.

Moorehead, Caroline. “Women and Children For Sale”. www.nybooks.com. October 11, 2007.

 

Edited by:

Alex Bullen

Shae Kovolchick

Kyra Binaxas

Nathan Lee