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History

Paramilitaries and Political Parties

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    UVFProvisional IRAOfficial IRA
    Formed by Gusty Spence in 1966IRA hadn't enough guns to defend Catholics in August 1969OIRA dates from 1970
    Feared IRA activity after 1916 Easter Rising celebrationsSome IRA leaders favoured politics rather than violenceMoved from military to political strategy
    Murdered two Catholic men and a Protestant woman in 1966PIRA born December 1969Sought an alliance with working class Protestants on social issues
    O'Neill used Special Powers Act to ban the UVF in 1966Preferred military tactics to parliamentary politicsInternment and Bloody Sunday encouraged a return to violence
    UVF planted bombs in 1969 to force O'Neill out of officeWanted a democratic socialist republic based on the 1916 Easter ProclamationCalled a ceasefire in May 1972
    Workers' Party grew out of the OIRA

    Alliance PartySDLPDUP
    Formed April 1970 and led by Oliver NapierFormed August 1970 and led by Gerry FittFormed September 1971 and led by Rev. Ian Paisley
    Wanted to attract nationalist and unionist votersDefined itself as an anti-sectarian partyReplaced the Protestant Unionist Party
    Supported by unionists who once voted for O'NeillSupported working class issuesSupported link with Britain and working class issues
    Supported by former members of Northern Ireland Labour PartySupported power-sharing and Irish dimensionOpposed power-sharing and Irish dimension
    Supported policies that promoted community relationsSupported re-unification of IrelandStrong support in rural and urban areas
    Supported by Catholic nationalists but did attract some Protestants like Ivan Cooper

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