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Trouble With Guns

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
ISBN-13: 978-0856406058
ISBN-10: 0856406058
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Democracy in Decline? (A Journal of Democracy Book) by
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 221 pages
  • Publisher: Blackstaff Pr (January 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0856406058
  • ISBN-13: 978-0856406058
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,952,436 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Hugh Claffey on March 26, 2008
Format: Paperback
Overall, I disagree with his analysis, but it's a valuable viewpoint about the Northern Conflict,

I had heard about this book for quite a while, it was written in 1997/8 providing an analysis of the Provisional movement as it was starting it's major change from guns to government. O'Doherty sees the use of violence by the Republican movement as a hijacking of the Civil Rights movement which frustrated political progress in Northern Ireland for decades. He sees the purpose of Republican violence as negating all internal political options for progress, by ensuring that Northern society is destabilised, in this he claims that Republican's had no problem, in general, with Loyalist violence, as it underlined instability. He quotes Gerry's Adams use of the term `armed propaganda', and makes a valid point that Republican's were engaged in neither rebellion nor revolution, but rather resistance.
O'Doherty is most acute on the contradictions between the ballot box and bullet strategy. He points to a 1997 Sinn Fein demonstration about the danger of traffic to children of a particular roadway, followed by their silence when the IRA abandons a car bomb on the same roadway the following week. More pointedly, he demonstrates the changes which occurred in the British Government negotiations position before and after the killings of RUC constables Graham and Johnston in Lurgan in the same year. This latter is a telling point, concessions were made to bring Sinn Fein to the table, and O'Doherty sees the IRA as manipulating these concessions, I suppose the rest of us hope that in retrospect the negotiations/concessions brought the right result.
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