Three posts for the price of one!
1)PM Johnson’s proposals to the EU 2) BBC Spotlight on the Troubles – part 3 and 3) The Edinburgh march for Scottish Independence
Comment: Just like PM Johnson’s Border changes to NI
In negotiating Brexit the UK government didn’t seem to realise the UK was free to make its choice but was not free to choose the consequences of that choice. One of their main aims has always been to separate the Brexit vote from its consequences.
The shock of actually seeing the consequences of leaving the EU, written down in black and white in the Withdrawal Agreement,
provoked Westminster’s refusal of it and of PM May who negotiated it.
Now, at the last minute, Boris Johnson’s UK government
has submitted “new” proposals for a deal.
“Dejà vu” said the EU
PM Johnson’s proposal
- is supported by at least 1/21 Tory MPs who were expelled from the party last month, the European Research Group (ERG) and the DUP.
- reneges on previous UK Govt. commitments (reinstate border controls in “designated places” in Ireland)
- demands concessions that the EU cannot make (abandon the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement)
- upends the sequencing Davies agreed to at the outset of the EU-UK negotiations (increased uncertainties about ireland) and
- tries to blame the EU for a) the negotiations going nowhere and b) all the downsides of a No Deal Brexit.
Comments: These proposals
- show PM Johnson is still negotiating with the Brexit party, the ERG and the DUP – not the EU.
- are aimed at reinforcing Johnson’s Brexit credentials in the forthcoming UK General Election.
- display contempt for the EU … but of course nobody in the UK Government is interested in the EU redlines, interests and so forth.
In the ultimate analysis PM Johnson doesn’t want a deal unless the UK is in charge, now and in the future.
Most importantly for the Irish, Johnson’s proposals showcase his arrogance and ignorance about the British border in Ireland.
Remember:It was never a relevant issue for him. In February 2018 he said that handling Irish border problem was like managing a congestion charge boundary between Camden & Westminster. How to manage it was essentially a technicality
As a mere trifle, Mr Johnson is now opting for two more borders on or around Ireland.
Because if 1 political British boundary doesn’t do the job, just add another 2(1 for Customs and 1 for the Single Market)
Comment: The UK Govt is effectively cutting the North off from Europe, the rest of Ireland and the UK.
PM Johnson is totally unaware, pretends he has no clue or just blindly disregards the fact that the Irish view the Border as a question of identity.
In fact, the majority of Northern Irish political parties said Mr Johnson’s plans showed “blatant disregard” for their people
They, and everybody else in the EU and elsewhere in the world, know the British Border in Ireland is a malevolent symbol that is heavily entangled with the emotions, history and trauma of English misrule in Ireland, Partition and the Troubles.
Look what happened the last time a British PM’s “technical solution “ to “a crime, is a crime, is a crime” came up against people with those very same emotions and conviction that the “British Government has no right in Ireland, never had any right in Ireland, and never can have any right in Ireland”
As a minor detail in the latest UK Government’s attempt to uphold their bargain with Unionists, Johnson proposes abandoning people and businesses in Ireland to the whim of the DUP.
As a UK escape clause, he wants to transfer the legal, regulatory, customs and political problems of Brexit to the DUP in Northern Ireland and through them to the rest of the country.
This threatens the Single Market, shared by 27 countries, who would have to count on DUP not to undermine it.
Comments: The deal Boris offered effectively places the Single Market under the UK’s control. No way the 27 EU countries will have that.
The DUP will be able to veto any alignment with the EU at the first chance they get.
When’s that likely to be?
In the remote possibility these proposals become the new Withdrawal Agreement, the DUP will get their chance towards the end of the “Transition Period”, just as the “Deal” starts being implemented. At the latest that’s around October/November 2021
Query: What if Stormont’s still not sitting?
Arlene Foster, DUP leader
“My understanding is that if there is no Assembly, then it will be up to Westminster to give consent through a mechanism such as a grand committee of Northern Ireland MPs.”
Since at present 10/11 Westminster MPs are on a DUP ticket, non-DUP voices in Northern Ireland will be forever silenced!
Particularly if they don’t take their seats in Westminster!
Comments: Won’t it be wonderful
for businesses to know that their markets and business model could be damaged or put at risk every 4 years!
watching NI back-track to the 1950s, when Unionists ran their own little fiefdom, and nobody else got a word in edgeways!.
seeing Catholics, Nationalists and Republicans being put back in their rightful place as second-class citizens
Finally . …
“200,000 people marched for Scottish independence in the streets of Edinburgh yesterday.
They turned the streets blue with their Saltires, All Under One Banner!
We congratulate them on such a wonderful march and rally.
During what was one of the biggest demonstrations in Scotland for a century, not one person was arrested for bad behaviour, not one person was injured by violent disorder, not a fingernail was broken much less a window or a lemonade bottle. The only counter measures deployed by the police in this event were the smiles of the officers as the 200.000 plus procession strolled happily past
We hope Scotland soon achieves its Independence and remains an outward-looking European country
Queries: Could such a large demonstration for Irish Unity march undisturbed anywhere in Belfast?
If not, why not?