Kevin O’Sullivan
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Re-shaping the relationship
Ireland, the EC and southern Africa
in Ireland, Africa and the end of empire
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This chapter extends the key themes of chapter six – the ‘fire brigade’ response to Afro-Asian radicalism, and the growing influence of the international anti-apartheid movement – into a new decade. It shows that the principles that allowed the ‘fire brigade’ to gain prominence in earlier years were re-shaped to fit a changing international context in the 1970s. In the Irish and Danish cases that meant using their progressive approach on issues such as apartheid and minority rule to shape new identities for themselves as members of the European Community (EC) from 1973. While those core values were being re-articulated and re-defined at official level, anti-apartheid movements in Europe and North America continued to be a thorn in the side of the South African, Rhodesian and Portuguese regimes. This chapter describes the 1970s as a time of ever-increasing integration and inter-dependence in the campaign against minority rule, and asks, what impact did that have on Irish politics and society?

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Ireland, Africa and the end of empire

Small state identity in the Cold War 1955–75


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