Saturday, January 30, 2010

Intransigent Irish

Related: Here's to You, Mrs. Robinson!

"Push to save unraveling N. Ireland coalition; British, Irish heads meet to resolve issues" by Shawn Pogatchnik, Associated Press | January 26, 2010

HILLSBOROUGH, Northern Ireland - The British and Irish governments launched a mission yesterday to save Northern Ireland’s unraveling administration, a Catholic-Protestant coalition that was supposed to forge a lasting era of nonviolent compromise....

Such cooperation was designed to consign to history a conflict over the future of this long-disputed corner of the United Kingdom that left 3,600 dead. The major Irish nationalist party, Sinn Fein, is warning it will withdraw from the 2 1/2-year-old coalition - triggering its collapse - unless the Protestant side accepts the need to transfer control of Northern Ireland’s justice system from Britain to local hands. Britain and Ireland both back the transfer. Sinn Fein formally accepted the authority of the Northern Ireland police as part of the deal....

But the Protestants of the Democratic Unionist Party are blocking the move until Sinn Fein meets other demands, including permission for Protestant fraternal groups to parade near Catholic districts, an annual sectarian tradition that caused widespread rioting until restricted in the late 1990s....

Blocking the deal over parade routes?

Cowen and Brown met first with the bickering Belfast chieftains of power-sharing, Democratic Unionist Party leader Peter Robinson and Sinn Fein deputy leader Martin McGuinness, and other senior officials from both parties. Britain’s secretary of state for Northern Ireland, Shaun Woodward, and Irish Foreign Minister Micheal Martin were at their prime ministers’ sides last night’s talks. Earlier yesterday, McGuinness and Robinson held their own face-to-face talks in Belfast that aides half-jokingly branded “High Noon.’’


Despite the prime ministers’ intervention, a breakdown of power-sharing looks more likely than a breakthrough because of the bad blood between the two principal parties and the electoral test they both face.

Yeah, POLITICS ALWAYS has to f*** everything up!

The souring Sinn Fein-Democratic Unionist relationship also comes against a backdrop of continuing violence by IRA dissidents who oppose the outlawed group’s 1997 cease-fire and the peace accord it inspired.

See: Irish Are No Fools

You sure they are IRA?

Both Robinson and McGuinness appear reluctant to compromise too much in advance of the UK election, to be held in the next few months, in part because Northern Ireland voters in all recent elections have punished moderate candidates and rewarded the most stubborn negotiators.


Sorry, but it seems to me that once again the Protestants are being dicks.

Not really worth fighting over, but it's a pattern.

"Deal at risk, 2 premiers leave Ulster; Say factions must both compromise" by Shawn Pogatchnik, Associated Press | January 28, 2010

HILLSBOROUGH, Northern Ireland - Neither Sinn Fein nor the Democratic Unionists, however, sounded close to achieving a deal....

Then why all the PR PRINT?



DUBLIN - Rival leaders of Northern Ireland’s faltering Catholic-Protestant administration edged closer to a new power-sharing deal yesterday after a marathon diplomatic effort, but negotiators said the final hurdles might be too high to clear....

I don't get the deceptions within paragraphs even. I really don't.

They must think the newspaper-reading public -- what is left of it -- is stoo-pid.

Their high-profile effort ended Wednesday in frustrated exhaustion. The departing prime ministers urged both sides to narrow the ground between them by yesterday. Otherwise, they warned, the two governments would publish their own Anglo-Irish blueprint for saving power-sharing. That deadline was quietly broken yesterday as the governments decided that, so long as the two local parties keep talking, it would be distracting to publish their own plans....

In exchange for accepting the transfer of law-and-order powers, the Democratic Unionists are demanding that the Catholic side accept a major reversal on how Northern Ireland’s divisive Protestant parades are managed. The summertime marches triggered chronic trouble with Catholics until the late 1990s, when a British government-organized panel began barring them from passing Sinn Fein power bases, where the worst rioting occurred. The Democratic Unionists want the panel disbanded and parade restrictions made a responsibility of the power-sharing government itself.

Translation: The British-backed Protestants want to stir s*** up like they always do!