Prepared for peace
The next two chapters provide a narrative of aspects of contemporary loyalism, and consider how its persona today might be understood with reference to the themes and undercurrents sketched throughout the previous three chapters. This chapter focuses on what might crudely be considered the positive manifestations of Ulster loyalism in the last few years, advancing the narrative through a description of the progression the UDA and UVF have made in conflict transformation processes. It outlines some of the vital contributions former combatants have made towards building and strengthening the nascent peace. It is argued that the role former loyalist combatants play both as peacekeepers and peace-builders is a natural progression, not only from their role as peacemakers in the 1990s, but of some of the defining aspects of the loyalist identity that emerged at the very beginning of the conflict.
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