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Simon Topping

Feb 4, 2022

Northern Ireland, the United States and the Second World War

Bloomsbury Publishing 2022

In Northern Ireland, the United States and the Second World War (Bloomsbury, 2022), Dr. Simon Topping analyses the American military presence in Northern Ireland during the war, examining the role of the government at Stormont in managing this 'friendly invasion', the diplomatic and military rationales for the deployment, the attitude of Americans to their posting, and the effect of the US presence on local sectarian dynamics. He explores US military planning, the hospitality and entertainment provided for American troops, the renewal and reimagining of historic links between Ulster and the United States, the importation of 'Jim Crow' racism, 'Johnny Doughboys' marrying 'Irish Roses', and how all of this impacted upon internal, transatlantic and cross-border politics.

This study also draws attention to influential and understudied individuals such as Northern Ireland's Prime Minister Sir Basil Brooke and offers a reassessment of David Gray, America's minister to Dublin. As a result, it provides a comprehensive examination of largely overlooked aspects of the war and Northern Ireland more generally, and fills important gaps in the history of both.

This interview was conducted by Dr. Miranda Melcher whose doctoral work focused on post-conflict military integration, understanding treaty negotiation and implementation in civil war contexts, with qualitative analysis of the Angolan and Mozambican civil wars.

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Miranda Melcher

Miranda Melcher (Ph.D., Defense Studies, Kings College, London) studies post-conflict military integration, understanding treaty negotiation and implementation in civil war contexts, with deep analysis of the Angolan and Mozambican civil wars.

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