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Newspaper Interview with Lord Brookeborough (ex-Premier of Northern Ireland), 30 October 1968



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Newspaper interview with Lord Brookeborough (LB), ex-Premier of Northern Ireland,
30 October 1968

Q: Have the persistent allegations of discrimination against Catholics in the North worried you?
LB: Yes, one doesn't like the idea. But I would like to make this plain. The Nationalists always say there is discrimination against the Roman Catholics. Well, there is no discrimination against Roman Catholics qua Roman Catholics, because they worship in a different way. What there is, is a feeling of resentment that most, and let me emphasise the word most, that most Roman Catholics are anti-British and anti-Northern Ireland. This is nothing to do with religion at all. But there is this feeling of resentment that here is a man who is out to destroy Northern Ireland if he can possibly do it. That I think, is it. They say 'Why aren't we given more higher positions?' But how can you give somebody who is your enemy a higher position in order to allow him to come and destroy you?

Q: Are you not talking in terms of what might have been true in the 1920s?
LB: No, I'm sure it still holds. I'm perfectly certain that if they got a chance they would push Northern Ireland into the Republic.

Q: Is it not the democratic right of anyone in Northern Ireland to be a Nationalist and an anti-Partitionist?
LB: Yes, absolutely his democratic right.

Q: And therefore, to expect completely equal treatment from the state?
LB: Well, it's very difficult to answer that, but surely nobody is going to put an enemy where he can destroy you?

Q: Even if he is going to use constitutional methods to do it?
LB: No. I wouldn't.

Source: Irish Times, 30 October 1968


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