Thursday, September 15, 2005


Nesbitt, naivety and nationalism

I groaned in despair as I read Dermot Nesbitt's naive and ignorant remarks towards the proposed speaking rights in the Dail for politicians from Ireland's north. (hat-tip A Tangled Web) They highlight a deeper and more significant issue, namely, the stunning inability of unionists to comprehend what Irish nationalism is about.

Let's analyse some of Despot's...uh I mean Dermot's comments:

"I never cease to be amazed at the chasm in understanding of some nationalists towards the unionist position. I witness an Irish Government that is seemingly prepared to act both outside international law and against its own Constitution in order to placate the demands of aggressive nationalism."

International law is an ass. As for working against our Constitution, Article 3 begins "It is the firm will of the Irish Nation, in harmony and friendship, to unite all the people who share the territory of the island of Ireland..." Says it all.

"Speaking rights seems an insignificant development, but it is an important litmus test. What is the Irish Government’s view of good neighbourliness? I say to members of Dail Eireann: according to international law this development would represent interference in the domestic affairs of the UK."

Our neighbours are the British. Speaking rights are a matter relating to our country. I don't think our neighbours will really mind to be honest, seeing as the PM of their country once spoke to the Dail! As for the 'international law' argument, what do you say Dermot to those who argue that the British breached international law when it interfered in Iraq? Hmm?

"Put simply, the Irish Government would be in breach of its international obligations if it unilaterally succumbed to Sinn Fein’s pressure to allow speaking rights in the Dail. As a member of the Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers, surely Foreign Minister Dermot Ahern could not conclude differently?"

Our national obligations are more significant than our international obligations. And furthermore, this goes above and beyond Sinn Fein. This is about Irish citizens having a say in their nation.

"The Forum met and commissioned studies. It asked Asbjorn Eide to consider human rights, describing him as “a leading international authority in the field of human rights”. Sinn Fein always refers to the importance of this issue.

"His study considered Ireland as an "outside minority-related" State in relation to Northern Ireland (i.e. having an Irish nationalist minority in Northern Ireland). He indicated that such States “must show respect for sovereign equality, territorial integrity and political independence of States” viewing this as a “principle basic to all international instruments in this field”. Non-interference is clear."

Well Mr Asborn Eide would do well to take heed to these words from the great Charles Stewart Parnell:

"No man shall have the right to fix the boundary to the march of a Nation".

"Subscribing to these international norms is unpalatable to many. However, forsaking them is potentially disastrous for good neighbourliness. Members of Dail Eireann, the choice is yours: choose wisely."

Dermot Nesbitt must think we're all idiots. Warning of a threat to 'good neighbourliness'? Where was the good neighbourliness over the last few days from those unionists who attacked northern nationalists?

We here in Ireland have the right, nay the duty, to uphold the rights of Irish citizens and to grant them equality with their southern compatriots.

No man, nor foreign nation, shall ever tell us 'thus far shalt thou go and no further'.


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