Source: (2003) In Nigel Biggar, ed., Burying the Past: Making Peace and Doing Justice after Civil Conflict. Expanded and updated. Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press. Pp. 287-303.
The long history of conflict in Ireland led eventually in the late 1960s to a period of social and political turmoil and violence in Northern Ireland known as Ã¢Â€ÂœThe Troubles.Ã¢Â€? The Belfast Agreement of Good Friday 1998 initiated a process of peace-building and devolved political authority for Northern Ireland. It has been a challenging and fitful process, with overall progress over the last years. Most favor the peace accord, but there have also been skepticism, mistrust, and resistance in certain segments of society, both Unionist and Republican. Terence McCaughey states that steps must now be taken by survivors of the conflict Ã¢Â€Â“ both perpetrators and victims of violence Ã¢Â€Â“ to prepare the way for reconciliation in the future (Ã¢Â€Âœburying the hatchetÃ¢Â€?) while remembering the past. To explore the prospects for this process, McCaughey discusses issues of public amnesia or remembrance, addressing the past, the possibility of a truth commission for Ireland or Northern Ireland, and personal and structural requirements of reconciliation.
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