When British troops arrived in Northern Ireland in 1969, they were welcomed enthusiastically by the Nationalist population. Figures involved in the events of the time explain how, in their views, this situation changed and the relationship turned sour. The curfew, which the Army set on the Falls Road area, was a key event in changing Nationalist attitudes. It helped the Provisional IRA to present themselves as defenders of the Nationalist community. They then went further and started to kill soldiers. The soldiers reacted violently and so the cycle of violence and mistrust developed.
Organise the class to make a timeline of events in The Troubles. Ask pupils to identify the key turning points in the escalating conflict. Useful for examining how conflicting points of view influence history. Pupils could identify then consider justifications for the contrasting interpretations through a structured group discussion.