The Troubles Brexit Discussion Forum

The Troubles Brexit Discussion Forum Look at 7 articles; write your opinion based on the article. Number the article follows the word document order.

The Troubles Brexit Discussion Forum
The Troubles Brexit Discussion Forum

Most prized in the discussion forum would be linking current news articles to course concepts.

Linking the news to course concepts not only helps to ground your understanding of those concepts, but it also provides you a deeper understanding of the news.

  1. Darcy Nelson

The Troubles – Brexit

One of the biggest roadblocks for the British departure from the EU has been the discussion on what to do about the border of Northern Ireland, a part of the U.K., and the Irish Republic, which would remain in the EU. This border has a not so distant violent past and depending on how Brexit turns out, many believe it would force there to be violence once again.

The Troubles Brexit Discussion Forum

The period of violence and death is known as The Troubles. The United Kingdom’s decision to leave the EU is an example of nationalism as discussed in class, but The Troubles was another level of nationalism.

The divide came between Protestant Unionists (for the U.K.) and Catholic Nationalists (for freedom from British rule). The sovereign citizens were militarized with the Irish Republican Army, who violently fought British troops from the 1960s to the 1990s.

Thousands of casualties, both troops, and citizens came from this sectarian conflict.

A sect is ‘a group of people with somewhat different religious beliefs (typically regarded as heretical) from those of a larger group to which they belong. This ties into Nationalism as a form of group identity or sense of community (powerpoint slides 06a Nationalism).

The Troubles Brexit Discussion Forum

A border also speaks to discussions of the Origins of the State. During the Troubles, a hard border provoked violence as the British troops guarding it were seen as a threat to the Irish Nationalist. In this video, Jane Ferguson explains that peace was able to come about after there was no longer the presence, or threat, of a border.

It is also stated that there is a very slim chance that a hard border from Brexit would ignite the same violence, as the world we live in is different today. This thought comes off as ignorant to the possibility of violent national supremacy.

The recent memories of violence during The Troubles could be a deterrent, but they could also justify a new interest in power and the use of force as the means.

In 1998, peace was made, but Brexit now threatens the state of harmony. It may not be a militarized sort of violence again, but it could be grounds for economic instruments to come into play with border custom’s and security as well future trade agreements between the U.K. and the EU.

The Troubles Brexit Discussion Forum

It will be interesting to see how Brexit resolves the border issue in the coming weeks and what the new policies will do to the region.

  1. I’m starting this thread to capture some IGO & NGO news not captured by other threads. Among the issues raised are the different kinds of activities of IGOs & NGOs:
  • NYT 1/22/19: “The U.S. Should Return to Unesco” [link]
  1. Semantics in the US

While introducing the humanitarian crises in Libya and Syria, Dr. Fong included a few examples of the strong impact semantics can have on the progression of said crises (comparing immigrants/minorities to cockroaches, etc…).

I wanted to share another example of this that made news today and yesterday. The son of President Trump, Trump Jr., shared his opinion on the border wall via his Instagram story (see here from Business Insider). He said, “You know why you can enjoy a day at the zoo? Because walls work”.

I’m not going to pretend I know exactly what was going through his mind, but he wouldn’t be the first individual to compare immigrants to animals. Here’s President Trump referring to immigrants as animals also reported by the Washington Post.

Here’s the White House defending Trump’s above quote (Politico).

Here’s another example of Trump referring to immigrants as something that can “infest” the United States (Time).

I’m not pro-gangs; I’m sure none of us are pro-gangs. However, rhetoric like this stokes fear and has the potential to create a policy to harm specific communities (read: communities that don’t look like the Trump family).

The Troubles Brexit Discussion Forum

  1. From our Week 1b optional readings, here is that NYT digest we can draw on throughout the semester. You can pluck out individual articles for discussion:
  • NYT Topics: War Crimes, Genocide and Crimes against Humanity [link]
  1. Black Earth Rising – Depictions of IGOs in Popular Media

I came across an interesting series on Netflix called “Black Earth Rising” that I thought you all might like to check out.

I’ve only just begun watching, but in the first episode ,we are introduced to Eve Ashby, a prosecutor who has tried cases before the International Criminal Court (ICC), and her adopted daughter Kate, who survived the Rwandan genocide in the 1990s.

I encourage you to at least watch the opening scene of the first episode, where Eve is giving a presentation, and takes a question from a man who attacks the legitimacy of the ICC.

He basically contends that the ICC is an egregious example of “self-righteous Western paternalism”, in that the ICC’s current caseload is focused on criminals from Africa; he points out the irony that European powers entered Africa during the colonial period and decimated governments and peoples’ way of life, only to then turn around and create an institution that focuses on trying to right the wrongs of genocide and war crimes that were arguably set into motion because of the West’s same colonial meddling. In a call to sovereignty, the questioner concludes that “African problems deserve African solutions.

” Eve responds that the ICC takes on cases where countries are either unable or unwilling to seek justice, regardless of the historical reasons why certain countries have dysfunctional institutions.

(I checked the actual ICC website, and it appears accurate that the majority of ongoing investigations focus on Africans.)

The Troubles Brexit Discussion Forum

I found this interesting because while we have talked in class about why the current U.S. administration is hostile to the ICC, I hadn’t considered other sources of opposition to the Court (from an anti-colonial perspective, for example). My question for the discussion board is whether you think the ICC should exist or not, and also whether it is effective.

Furthermore, how can a liberal institution like the ICC survive if investigators cannot expect cooperation from member states? And even if the ICC is engaged in a noble cause, are there better ways to achieve justice?

After all, many criticize the ICC for spending an enormous amount of resources without ever reaching many criminal convictions. In addition to what we have learned in class, the following links might be helpful to form an opinion:

RadioFreeEurope: Why Does the U.S. Have It Out for the ICC?

CNN: ICC Fast Facts

International Criminal Court Website:

NYT 9/16/18: “Why the ICC Should Rejoice…”

NYT 9/13/18 “U.S. Attack on ICC…”

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