by Kerry Dexter

It’s a time of change for the north of Ireland — or maybe not. In the six counties which are part of the United Kingdom, people voted several days ago in elections which may determine whether their political decisions will be made closer to home, or more distantly, Either way, it appears that neighbors to the south, in the Republic of Ireland, May have a greater presence in policy decisions.

Here’s an analysis of results and prospects from the early days of vote counting,
from the Belfast Telegraph.

What are the prospects? Four decades of violence and bloodshed, and four decades of political policing in return have left their scars: family ties and connections, the dimming of extremist action on both sides suggest hope, as does the practical fact that both Loyalists and Sinn Fein leaders would like to exercise political power.

Hard bargaining is expected from all parties, and they are facing a March 26 deadline to get things in line. British Premier Tony Blair and Irish Taoiseach Bernie Ahern each know it’s a situation filled with possibilities, some good, some less so.

A look at the last decades of the conflict in songs by contemporary songwriters, based on stories from people who lived the events:
Radio Ballads: Thirty Years of Conflict

Kerry Dexter writes about music and creative practice — and a lot about Ireland — at Music Road,

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