Fairmichael, Rob

Rob Fairmichael
6 July 2021News

Both unionists and nationalists need to start thinking creatively about possible futures inside and outside of the UK, says Rob Fairmichael

A Quick guide to NI
by PN staff

As many readers will know, the Northern Ireland mini-state was created when the British government partitioned Ireland 100 years ago, on 3 May 1921.

Since then, there have been people in NI who want to reunite the six NI counties with the rest of Ireland – they’re known as ‘nationalists’ and ‘republicans’. Against them have been those who want to maintain British rule over NI – known as ‘unionists’ and ‘loyalists’.…

1 February 2019Feature

Brexit (and demographics) is creating plenty of future work for peace activists in Northern Ireland

An October 2015 Sinn Féin protest at Stormont, outside Belfast, against a hard border in Ireland. Photo: Sinn Féin (CC BY 2.0)

‘Norn Iron’ is a colloquial, phonetic term for ‘Northern Ireland’ and there are certainly some ‘Norn Ironies’ about.

One is that the Democratic Unionist party (DUP) have done more for a united Ireland in the last couple of years than republicans have done in decades.

Another irony is just when more Catholics and even some Protestants…

3 September 2005Comment

It is one of the ironies ofmodern history that some one looking for a safe place to live in the "United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland" might today choose the capital of Northern Ireland over the capital of England (and perhaps even more ironic that the British government looks set to make some of the same mistakes it made in Northern Ireland thirty-odd years ago). However a quick glimpse at recent newspapers in Northern Ireland will show you that life has not been transformed…

3 June 2003Comment

With yet another pause in the Northern Irish peace process, Rob Fairmichael puts forward the case for nonviolent responses and "democratic insurrection".

The recent impasse on re-establishing the institutions of local government in Northern Ireland raises many questions, among them the goodwill of both the republican and unionist communities.

The postponement of elections to the Northern Ireland Assembly, until at least the autumn, is a disappointment, particularly as the normally volatile summer period is nearly upon us. It is usual to seek to blame one side for such an impasse, and, while there can be some point in this at times, it…

3 December 2002Comment

The War Resister's International Triennial conference was held in Dublin in August. Rob Fairmichael offers somereflections.

To assess something which you're intimately involved with is difficult. While I was out of the main Dublin-London axis for the War Resisters' International Triennial Conference, “Stories and strategies - nonviolent resistance and social change”', I was nevertheless centrally involved.

This meant that while aware of much of what was happening, beforehand I was not so much in the whirlwind and during it I was too busy to engage in some of the conference. But in any case a…