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Just fighting to survive: loyalist paramilitary politics and the Progressive Unionist Party

McAuley, James W. (2004) Just fighting to survive: loyalist paramilitary politics and the Progressive Unionist Party. Terrorism and Political Violence, 16 (3). pp. 522-543. ISSN 0954-6553

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    Throughout the contemporary period, Unionists and Loyalists in Northern Ireland have reacted in contradictory ways to the peace process. This article highlights some of the key political and social dynamics within loyalism. In particular, it considers the positioning of the paramilitary Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) and their linked political representatives in the Progressive Unionist Party (PUP). The response of the PUP to the peace process has revealed several important tensions within unionism. These include the notions that Loyalists can no longer be assured that the UK government will maintain the Union; expressions of class and gendered identities; a lack of trust of mainstream unionism; and, sectarianism, which although it remains a key element within Loyalist identity, is by no means its only dimension. Finally, the article outlines the broader construction of Loyalist and Unionist ideologies, and positions the PUP within broader politics of contemporary unionism

    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: UoA 39 (Politics and International Studies) Copyright © Taylor and Francis, Inc., 2004
    Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
    J Political Science > JF Political institutions (General)
    Schools: School of Human and Health Sciences
    School of Human and Health Sciences > Centre for Research in the Social Sciences
    School of Human and Health Sciences > Academy for British and Irish Studies
    Related URLs:

    1. Reproduced in O. Byrne (ed), State of Play: The Theatre and Cultural Identity in
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    24. G. Gillespie, ‘Loyalists Since 1972’, in D. G. Boyce and A. O’Day (eds) Defenders
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    26. See Stevenson (note 25).
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    28. Interview with author, Belfast 2000.
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    Our Community’, Election Communication. (Belfast: PUP 2003).
    33. See R. McCartney, Reflections on Liberty, Democracy and the Union (Dublin:
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    34. Cited in Mitchell (note 10) pp.1856.
    35. SeeMcAuley ‘Cuchulainn and an RPG-7’ (note 5); The Politics of Identity (note 5);
    and ‘Not a Game of Cowboy and Indians’ (note 5).
    36. Coulter (note 6) p.235.
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    38. See J.W. McAuley and J. Tonge, ‘The Role of Extra-Constitutional Parties in
    the Northern Ireland Assembly’, Final Report to the Economic and Social
    Research Council: ESRC Award L327253058 (2001); ‘Over the Rainbow?: Relationships
    Between Loyalists and Republicans in the Northern Ireland Assembly’,

    tudes Irlandaises 28=1 (2003) pp.17798.
    39. Committee on the Administration of Justice (note 21) pp.101.
    40. Interview with author, Belfast, 1998.
    41. Cusack and McDonald (note 5) p.117.
    42. Progressive Unionist Party (note 32).
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    49. See S. Walker, ‘Paramilitaries Reap £18m From Rackets’, BBC website, ireland (downloaded 2 July 2002).
    50. See R. Eames, ‘Loyalists Must End Criminality’,
    fr==1=hi=northern ireland=3021452.stm (downloaded 26 June 2003); A. Silke,
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    in Northern Ireland’, Low Intensity Conflict & Law Enforcement 7=2 (1998)
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    21=4 (1998) pp.33161; ‘Ragged Justice: Loyalist Vigilantism in Northern Ireland’,
    Terrorism and Political Violence 11=3 (1999) pp.131; ‘Drink, Drugs,
    and Rock’n’Roll: Financing Loyalist Terrorism in Northern Ireland—Part Two’,Studies in Conflict and Terrorism 23=2 (2000) pp.10727; and E. Moloney, ‘Criminality
    Dominates Loyalist Paramilitarism’, Sunday Tribune, 7 January 2001.
    51. BBC News, ‘Loyalist Commission Loyalists Should End Rackets’, http:== news=northern ireland=3193050.stm (downloaded
    15 October 2003).
    52. C. Anderson, The Billy Boy: The Life and Death of LVF Leader Billy Wright
    (Edinburgh: Mainstream Publishing 2002).
    53. There are various occasional publications supporting the LVF such as, The
    Volunteer; Leading The Way; and The Wright View.
    54. B. Walker, ‘LVF Threat to Trimble During Poll’, Belfast Telegraph, 30 April 2003.
    55. Gillespie (note 24) p.268.
    56. C. Persic and S. Bloomer, The Feud and the Fury. . .The Response of the
    Community Sector to the Shankill Feud, August 2000 (Belfast: Springfield Intercommunity
    Development Project no date).
    57. D. Ervine, ‘Loyalist Confidence in Decline’ BBC website
    northern ireland (downloaded 10 May 2002).
    58. David Ervine, cited in Combat (January 2003) p.4.
    59. D. McKittrick, ‘What Makes the Loyalists Angry is Seeing the Other Side Doing
    So Well’, The Independent, 17 January 2002.
    60. D. Murray, Protestant Perceptions of the Peace Process in Northern Ireland
    (University of Limerick: Centre for Peace and Development Studies 2000).
    61. M. Hall, An Uncertain Future: An Exploration by Protestant Community Activists
    (Newtownabbey: Island Publications 2002) p.3.
    62. See, for example, reports in The Guardian (4 January 2002 and 7 January 2003).
    63. See P. Shirlow, ‘Segregation in Belfast Since the Peace Process’, Paper presented
    to the Royal Geographical Society Conference, Belfast, 5 January 2002; ‘Fear,
    Mobility and Living in the Ardoyne and Upper Ardoyne Communities’, Mapping
    the Spaces of Fear Research Team, University of Ulster,
    uk=issues=community=survey.htm (downloaded 10 June 2002); and ‘Who Fears
    to Speak’: Fear, Mobility, and Ethno-Sectarianism in the Two ‘Ardoynes’, The
    Global Review of Ethnopolitics 3=1 (2003) pp.7691.
    64. See S. Dunn and V. Morgan, Protestant Alienation in Northern Ireland. A
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    65. See S. Breen, ‘Survey Shows Unionists Divided Over Talks’, The Irish Times,
    11 September 1997; and M. Hall, At the Crossroads? (Newtownabbey: Island
    Pamphlets 1998).
    66. The survey, conducted by Colin Irwin of the Institute of Irish Studies at Queen’s
    University, Belfast, was first published in Belfast Telegraph on 10 January 1998.
    67. Dowds (note 2).
    68. For fuller results, see C. Irwin, ‘Devolution and the State of the Northern Ireland
    Peace Process’, The Global Review of Ethnopolitics 2=34 (2003) pp.7191.
    69. News Letter, 23 February 1995.
    70. Orange Standard, 1 April 1999.
    71. Democratic Unionist Party, Fair Deal Manifesto 2003 (Belfast: DUP 2003).
    72. Cited in Andersonstown News, 26 June 1996, p.10.73. McAuley ‘Unionism’s last Stand?’ (note 2).
    74. CAIN Web Service ‘Assembly Election (NI): Results 26 November 2003’, http:== (downloaded 4 December
    75. See, for example, Ballymacarret Think Tank, Puppets No More (Newtownabbey:
    Island Pamphlets 1999); M. Hall, Beyond the Fife and Drum (Belfast: Island
    Pamphlets 1995); and Reinforcing Powerlessness: The Hidden Dimension to the
    Northern Ireland ‘Troubles’ (Belfast: Island Pamphlets 1996).
    76. See D. McKittrick, ‘Trust Drains Away’, The Independent, 6 October 2002; and
    B. White, ‘Unionists Believe Good Friday Agreement is All Bad’, The Herald,
    25 July 2002.

    Depositing User: Sara Taylor
    Date Deposited: 24 Sep 2007
    Last Modified: 15 Dec 2010 12:59


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