The End?

A peace agreement in Northern Ireland may lift the awful burden of history from a lovely, violent place

Ireland is a deceptively beautiful place, soft and green, north and south. Its people, north and south, are deceptively kind and civil and wise. Deceptive, because in the hills and valleys of this island, and among its tribes and clans, vicious hatred and ugly violence have raged for centuries, inflicting unending death and suffering that have come to seem the very price of living in such a lovely place.

But last week, in one of those apparent miracles of the late 20th century--like the end of the cold war and the surrender of apartheid in South Africa--some of the awful weight...

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