Welcome to my blog, which features details about my new book UVF: Behind the Mask, published by Merrion Press.
My name is Aaron Edwards and I was born in Belfast in 1980 and grew up in Rathcoole and Carnmoney, which are situated in the Newtownabbey area on the northern outskirts of Belfast.
I completed my undergraduate studies at Ulster University and hold an MA and a PhD from the Queen’s University Belfast.
Since I completed my undergraduate thesis on the Progressive Unionist Party of Northern Ireland in 2001, I have been actively researching Ulster loyalism and unionism, publishing numerous articles, book chapters, books and reports on the Ulster Volunteer Force, Red Hand Commando and the PUP. You can read a sample of many of these publications on this blog.
Between 2001 and 2008, I was actively involved in peace-building and conflict transformation work on the ground in Northern Ireland, which included working with loyalist paramilitaries to move towards disarmament, demobilisation and reintegration of their memberships.
Since 2008, I have been a Senior Lecturer in Defence and International Affairs at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst where I teach an International Security course. Although I my teaching duties are wide and varied – and take me all over the world – I specialise on issues connected with terrorism, insurgency and extremism.
The views expressed on this blog are entirely my own.