argument top image

Should there be a united Ireland? Show more Show less
Back to question

The status of Northern Ireland has been the subject of intense debate and decades of violence known as the Troubles, which started in the 1960s. Though Northern Ireland has been at peace since the Good Friday Agreement in 1998, the question of whether Northern Island should remain in the United Kingdom or join the Republic of Ireland remains a source of contention. Should there be a united Ireland?

No, Northern Ireland should remain part of the United Kingdom Show more Show less

Northern Ireland's status, as one of four constituent countries of the United Kingdom, should remain the same
< (2 of 4) Next position >

It would be giving in to the IRA

A united Ireland would be viewed as a victory for IRA terrorists
< (3 of 5) Next argument >


Even more than 20 years after the signing of the Good Friday Agreement, the campaign for a united Ireland is synonymous with the IRA, a terrorist group.

The Argument

The Republic of Ireland is still led by Sinn Fein, which was once the political wing of the IRA and its public supporters include former IRA members such as Gerry Kelly, as well as Gerry Adams who is widely believed to have been an IRA member. Because of this, creating a United Ireland would be akin to giving in to the demands of terrorists. It is of the utmost importance to not give terror groups anything they may consider a victory, and a United Ireland would be exactly this. This is especially true if a United Ireland comes out of fears of violence over Brexit, as this would be a direct submission to dissident Republican terror groups.

Counter arguments

Creating a united Ireland more than 20 years after the Good Friday Agreement would be the opposite of letting terrorists win: it would be showing terrorists that peaceful methods are the way to achieve victory. Decades of armed struggle failed to fulfil the IRA’s ultimate goal, proving that violence has not worked. But if a united Ireland is created now, it will be done through the institutions set up by the Good Friday Agreement. In other words, it will only have been possible because the IRA agreed to peace. This would be a great victory of peace over violence and would me a message to terrorists everywhere that peace is the correct path to pursue.


[P1] A united Ireland would be allowing the IRA to achieve its ultimate goal [P2] This would be giving in to terrorists

Rejecting the premises

[Rejecting P2] Showing that the IRA's goal can only be achieved through peace is the opposite of giving in to terrorists.



Not sure yet? Read more ↑


This page was last edited on Friday, 6 Dec 2019 at 15:47 UTC

Explore related arguments