Letters to the Editor

British government ploughing on in hope rather than expectation

It is becoming all too clear that the dangers of Brexit are outweighing any potential benefits. MP and MP issuing warning after warning with long monologues of threats and risks, yet government ploughs on in hope rather than expectation. Should the UK get out without a deal, trade maybe impossible. The paper work will not be there and doubts about contracts with the UK which have already been made with member states. Much has been said recently at select and scrutiny committees regarding exports to the UK, especially from Ireland. Is trade going to come to a standstill if government risk a no-deal situation?  It is all very well to say “get out”, but where does the UK go after that? 
The key word is ‘out’ and what does it mean in practicable terms? How ‘out’ is the UK going to be?
Britain is part of Europe whether it is in the EU Bloc or not and must have a working relationship with the EU. Is the UK going to hack it out day by day from now on as it drowns in deep and uncharted waters? The UK government will have a very weak hand once it actually leaves the EU. Everything will change for the UK and it will suffer restricted rights to audiences with top EU officials and will have to wait in line with all other WTO countries. Diplomatic relations will be entirely different and fraught with frustration and ire. Look out too for those who call to go back into the EU after it all goes horribly wrong and backfires. There will be calls to get back in if it is a catastrophe – we can be sure of that. At that stage the UK will be even more divided and adrift not knowing what to do. The UK government is trying to solve problems with unwanted emigration and costs associated with the EU, but Brexit may not really solve these problems fully. Lots of countries continue have migratory problems though they are not members of the EU. The border continues to face the same old problem – you cannot be in and out of the EU and attempts to the contrary seem to be futile. The EU will demand a border somewhere at some stage and the Irish Sea postulate has not been totally ruled out. It is hard to see how unionists are going to fall in love with that idea. A worse case scenario is where the mainland UK is isolated from the EU and Northern Ireland doubly so, in a quasi border customs system with ongoing difficulties or doubts about how it trades with the Republic. Can there be any doubt now with all the reservations which have been voiced and foisted that the dangers of a no-deal or an ill-conceived Brexit far outweigh the benefits to the UK and could leave it out in the cold.

MAURICE FITZGERALD
Shanbally, Co Cork

 

Britain having chewed up DUP will now spit them out big time

If everyone follows the DUP’s stance Northern Ireland is going to hell in a hand cart. The only word in the dictionary they seem to know is no (no, no, no) of late – indeed since its inception.
British and unionist heads must surely be buried in the sand and if they don’t soon surface they will surely smother and all Northern Ireland’s businesses and farmers etc will smother with them. The British and unionists are having a very difficult time realising after 800 years they are not in the driving seat, but a very backward-looking back-seat passenger. They are the six-stone weakling in the Charlie Atlas brochure having the sand kicked in their face and it’s hard to take. The EU, including the 26 counties of Ireland’s 32 counties, is playing a blinder by insisting and supporting a backstop which the British PM asked for. The blinder is two fold, first what the British and unionists did not plan for, it is cast in stone. If it were not, the British would do as they have done for centuries, making promises they have no intention of honouring, as they did to the Irish when they needed their muscle and blood in the First World War. But when the votes were counted after 1918 election with more than 80 per cent voting for an independent 32-county Ireland the usual backtracking started proving once again, if proof was needed, that Britain’s word is not her bond. However, the Irish have suffered and learnt a lot since that fiasco. If the promises of 1918 had been cast in stone as the backstop is, just imagine Ireland today with no border, no civil war, no DUP, no troubles, no IRA no Stormont.
Finally, there is a lot of fake news going around that 26 of Ireland’s 32 counties will suffer much more than the six occupied counties. Pure nonsense, the south will lose its contracts with the Britain with its 65m citizens, but will have full, unbridled access to the EU with its 500m customers, which blinkered Britain is divorcing itself from. It’s a no brainier.

The DUP is only now realising what nationalists have long ago found out – the British having chewed them up will now spit them out big time.

PETER McEVOY
Banbridge, Co Down

 

Division of opinion

I am writing to express my concern about the ongoing controversy surrounding the development proposed on Glassmullin Green by De La Salle College.

I write in my personal capacity as a lifelong resident in this community and chairperson of the lead community organisation in the area, Upper Andersonsonstown Community Forum.

Many of us working within the community have been concerned about the degree of division of opinion within the area about the proposed development.

I do not underestimate the strength of opinions nor indeed their validity on this issue but firmly believe that engagement between the community and De La Salle College management is essential.

I understand that work is likely to commence almost immediately to deliver this project and in my own opinion it would be very important for a real and genuine dialogue to begin without further delay.

De La Salle College has been part of this community for a very long time and many of its pupils who live in this local area are very keen to have first-class facilities.

Of equal importance are the rights of residents in the area to a quality environment.

I believe that a genuine engagement is essential to secure an accommodation of all opinions and will explore how the community sector in the area can be of assistance to all concerned.

BARNEY KANE
Belfast BT11

 

Challenge views on abortion

With elections of various sorts about to happen in both parts of Ireland, it is time for all pro-life citizens to express their concern at the threat of abortion to our unborn children and their mothers to any potential candidate we meet. Whether they knock on our doors or not, we must, by email, phone calls, visiting their offices or writing letters, ask and challenge them on their views on abortion, and state that their answers will decide how we vote at the polling stations. We must ask them to justify aborting the unborn and damaging and hurting their mothers. We must send the message to the world that Ireland is and will remain pro-life.

JOHN AUSTIN
Limavady, Co Derry

 

Splenetic Speaker

As the turgid Brexit debates proceed interminably at Westminster, I’m becoming increasingly alarmed by the splenetic contributions from Speaker, John Bercow.  

Perhaps he could ensure swifter, more effective control by replacing his current exhortations with the slightly more robust, ‘Ordure, Ordure.’

NOLLAIGH O'FARRAIGH
Ard Mhacha

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