NORTHERN IRELAND: Oh, Jesus, Will It Work?

There was a time when a June election in Ulster would have been a kind of summer festival, exuberant with fifes and drums and oratorical flourish. The long months of gunfire and explosions have made that impossible. The streets of Belfast are devoid of parades and rallies; they are patrolled by British armored troop carriers, the soldiers alert for snipers. Voters generally remain in the relative safety of their homes, watching the campaign on television.

It is with barely excessive hyperbole, though, that ex-Prime Minister Brian Faulkner has called this week's election...

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