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Who fears to speak of 1998

Irish Times citing Martin Mansergh reacting to a comment of Gerry Adams (full Adams interview and exegesis at Slugger) – Dr Martin Mansergh said Gerry Adams’s assertion on the RTÉ Radio programme This Week that the governments of that time refused to push or promote the repeal of the [Government of Ireland] Act, partitioning Ireland, [...]

‘McGuinness suspect in double police killing’ – Herald

The Evening Herald has claimed that SF Presidential candidate Martin McGuinness is the main suspect in the murder of two policemen gunned down in an IRA ambush in Derry: SINN Fein Presidential candidate Martin McGuinness is the main suspect in the brutal murder of two policemen, the Herald can reveal. Sergeant Peter Gilgunn (26) and [...]

Of Stewards and Barons

There is understandable amusement at the constitutional contortions involved in Gerry Adams resignation from the UK House of Commons so that he can concentrate on his candidacy for Louth in the 2011 general election.  But before presuming that there is something uniquely republican about the problems created by the resignation procedure, consider the list of [...]

We’re so vain

Clearly overnight the government was told that the tactic of sending the Brians out to deny the obvious — that we are negotiating a loan — was making things worse so the new spin today is that because we’re so special, the IMF is designing a special type of loan just for us.  One where [...]

Don’t mention the war

Here’s the text of Brian Cowen’s speech entitled “A Decade of Commemorations — Commemorating Our Shared History” to the Institute for British Irish Studies at UCD today.  There are various points to make.  One is that these speeches — and this is not Cowen’s fault — have adopted a psychobabble language since they are written [...]

MLA joins Fianna Fáil

Gerry McHugh, until this morning an Independent MLA, has joined Fianna Fáil. He becomes the first person to represent the party in a parliament other than the Oireachtas, I believe (Dev didn’t sit). It seems to signal their entry into Northern politics. McHugh was a Sinn Féin representative for Fermanagh/South Tyrone until 2007. His reason [...]

Cowen Celebrates Dail’s 90th Anniversary

Brian Cowen chose to use his Dail Anniversary speech to forge a link between the first Dail in 1919 and Ireland’s role in Europe. Under the wider topic of republicanism Cowen addressed partition, Europe and the wider economic downturn. It is a starting gun on raising the profile of the EU’s role in stabilising the [...]

Fianna Fail in the North Will Not Succumb to Narrow Nationalism – Ahern

Bertie gave the Bodenstown oration today and used it as an opportunity to return to the legacy issue theme of turning Fianna Fail into a 32-county party. He sought to reassure unionists that Fianna Fail will not be a sectarian influence of proponent of narrow nationalism as it seeks to move North.

So tell us, just why does the world need yet another 32-county party… or Fianna Fáil and the North.

So, what to make of the news yesterday about Fianna Fáil exploring the ‘idea of advancing itself as a political party in the North’? Certainly it has considerable support amongst many FF members. But the more one examines the idea the less feasible it becomes.

“What answer from the North?”: Bertie eyes up the SDLP

Fianna Fail today sat down to their “think-in” out in the wilds of Wicklow. Chaired by Dermot Ahern, the gathering is a welcome opportunity for TDs, councillors and MEPs to get their heads around the serious business of governing for the next five years. An Taoiseach was plainly delighted to be sprung from Dublin Castle, [...]

A Big Day in the North: Nationalism in the UK, The British-Irish Council and unintended consequence…

A Big Day in the North…or so Black Grape had it… back in 1995. So, what’s up next week? Why, the British-Irish Council meet, and as Gerry Moriarty writes in yesterdays Irish Times: First Minister the Rev Ian Paisley and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness are scheduled to greet Gordon Brown at Parliament Buildings, Stormont, [...]

Sinn Fein’s delay tactics in north cost it bounce in south…

So much of what occured after the Belfast Agreement is so hidden from open scrutiny that it is often a case of paying your money and take your choice of who was responsible for who ultimately collapsed the immediate outworking of that deal. Republicans blame unionists, and vice versa.

Ireland in the commonwealth

From IOL. The Irish Government today faced further calls to rejoin the Commonwealth.Following appeals in the North’s Assembly yesterday for Ireland to rejoin the international organisation headed by the Queen after 58 years, the secretary general of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) Dr William Shija, said the time had come for Ireland to embrace the [...]

North to get Truth and Reconciliation Commission?

From Reuters last night, Bertie speaking to the Council on Foreign Relations suggested a mechanism not unlike South Africa‘s Truth and Reconciliation Commission may be necessary to secure progress in community relations up North.  ”I think we have to find some mechanism. … Otherwise it will never come to an end,” Ahern said. One commission [...]

Things we can take from the other Irish Election

With all the ballots counted, preferences transfered and seats awarded, the make up of the could-be Stormont Assembly is now known. It was an election of little surprise – the DUP and Sinn Fein grew, the UUP and SDLP shrunk and no major names suffered shock defeats (akin to Trimble in the 2005 Westminster elections). [...]

A Battle A Day Keeps The Voters Away

As always, I struggle with a feeling that I’m somehow not entitled to stick my toe into the murky waters that comprises the political landscape in the six counties because I have no idea what the “sit-EE-ation” is really like up there. Of course, that will never stop me chucking in my two cents’ worth [...]

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