Northern Ireland: Disaffection

Hunger strikers lose favor

When he formed his government earlier this month, Prime Minister Garret FitzGerald was bitterly critical of the British government. Reason: Whitehall's unyielding approach to the members of the Irish Republican Army who were conducting hunger strikes in the Maze Prison near Belfast. But last week FitzGerald declared he was much more sympathetic to Whitehall's tactics. That turnabout led the London Times to editorialize: "There has been a remarkable improvement in relations between the British and the Irish governments over the past few days."

One reason for the change was Ireland's indignation about the riots that had exploded in...

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