Current Affairs

Bobby Storey, Paddy Holohan And Sinn Féin’s Very Bad Week In Opposition – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

This week should have seen Sinn Féin in the sunny uplit lands of opposition, to borrow a phrase from UK politics. Instead the party has dug a political and PR hole for itself and jumped in feet first. Despite the many attempts by SF representatives and supporters to justify the huge gathering at the Belfast funeral of Bobby Storey, the senior backroom figure in SF and the former Director of Intelligence of the Irish Republican Army at the tail end…

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The British Blindspot In The Fawlty Towers Controversy? The Irish Orangutans – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

The decision by the BBC to remove an episode of the classic 1970s’ sitcom Fawlty Towers from the streaming service UKTV in response to the anti-racism protests sweeping the world has sparked a bitter war of words between supporters and opponents of the move in Britain. The controversy is focused on the well-known 1975 episode “The Germans”, principally the use of racist epithets by one of the ancillary characters rather than the slightly weak satire of anti-German sentiment for which…

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Has Electoral Success Broken The Green Party? – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

It seems that the Green Party is going through some of the same growing pains that effected Sinn Féin in the aftermath of the general election of 2011 and to a lesser extent at the start of this year. In the first decade-and-a-half of the new century SF experienced an influx of excited new blood in the South that frequently found itself at odds with the cautious older blood of the existing membership. Incoming activists and their post-war concerns and…

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Fianna Fáil Dissent, Fine Gael Smugness, Green Party Unease And Russian Bots – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

Are the wheels about to come off the new multiparty coalition government before it can even trundle out of the garage? Things are looking difficult for the spindly tricycle hammered together by Fine Gael, Fianna Fáil and the Greens. The much diminished Legion of the Rearguard in FF, championed by the likes of Éamon Ó Cuív and a handful of well-known grassroots’ veterans, has come out in opposition to the draft deal with the support of an even smaller cadre…

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Good News For Cyclists And Pedestrians? – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

The draft programme for government agreed by Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Green Party commits the forthcoming coalition to further investment in new and improved infrastructure for cyclists and pedestrians. Which is a welcome development. Unfortunately I have no doubt that when it comes to planning and constructing that infrastructure a number of local and regional authorities around the country, and in the capital in particular, will make an absolute balls of it. Unfortunately with the move to push…

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Covid-19 Has Killed More British People Than The Blitz In World War II – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

Between the United Kingdom’s declaration of war on the German Reich in September 1939 and the latter’s capitulation in May 1945 some 61,000 civilians were killed in the UK by enemy action, principally in the so-called “Blitz” or aerial bombardments of June 1940 to May 1941. Despite the ludicrously low official figures published in recent weeks by the British authorities it’s now estimated that in the first six months of 2020 some 65,000 people have died in the UK through…

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The Attacks On Australian Greens Politician Lidia Thorpe By The Australian Press – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

Australia’s version of the Daily Mail, which is every bit as reactionary as its counterpart in Britain, has published a typically over the top report attacking the Australian Greens’ politician Lidia Thorpe. The reason for its outrage? The decision by the Aboriginal campaigner to take up her seat in Australia’s federal upper legislature. An incoming senator who doesn’t identify as Australian has been slammed for backtracking and declaring she will swear allegiance to the Queen to collect a $211,250 salary.…

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Ending The Lockdown In Ireland. Too Fast, Too Soon? – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

Though the Fine Gael-led Government seems determined to speed up the country’s transition through the various stages of the lockdown exit plan, spurred on by backbench TDanna and newspapers lobbying against the continued restrictions on behalf of various business interests, the push to prematurely end the pandemic controls implemented back in March is meeting its own criticism. While much of the established press is presenting the rapid easing of regulations as simply a recognition of reality in the face of…

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UK Issues Threats Against Its EU Neighbours – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

Following on from claims by anonymous sources in the UK government that Britain would seek to sabotage the workings of the European Union if its extortionate demands in the Brexit negotiations were not met, late last night we had a nameless but senior Downing Street official – widely believed to be the anti-EU activist turned prime ministerial aide Dominic Cummings – uttering new threats against Europe through a journalist with the right-wing Spectator magazine. According to the Guardian: On Monday…

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An Irish Sea Border, The DUP And Loyalist Threats Of Bombs – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

Judging by the more informed speculation in the Irish and international press it seems that after two years of prevaricating the United Kingdom is now prepared to offer a “compromise” Withdrawal Agreement between the UK and the European Union so close to the original as to be almost identical. Indeed, the rumoured proposals discussed by the British premier Boris Johnson and Leo Varadkar apparently take us back to the end of 2017 and the agreement reached by Theresa May with…

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The UK Has Effectively Broken The Good Friday Agreement – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

A tribunal in Belfast has ruled that the residents of the Six Counties are British subjects, and British subjects alone, because the United Kingdom failed to implement the nationality clauses of the Good Friday Agreement (GFA) into domestic law. That decision came in a shock judgement against Derry-born Emma DeSouza and her husband Jake, who were fighting a challenge by the Home Office in London following an earlier court ruling in their favour. Under the regional and international peace treaty…

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DUP Allegedly Met With Loyalists Week Before Brexit Terror Threats – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

The veteran Irish journalist and author Brian Rowan has taken to Twitter to claim that the leadership of the Democratic Unionist Party met with figures previously associated with militant loyalism in the Six Counties sometime last week and just before pro-British terrorists warned the Sunday Times newspaper in London that they were ready to return to violence in the event of a compromise Brexit deal being reached between the United Kingdom and the European Union. If true, and the DUP…

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The US Assassination Of Qasem Soleimani In Baghdad – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

There is a well-observed episode of the American television series The West Wing where the character of President Josiah Bartlet, played by Martin Sheen, is frustrated by his advisers plans to make a “proportionate response” to the downing of a US plane by Syrian attackers despite his initial demands for a far bloodier response. In writer Aaron Sorkin’s fictional White House administration the institutional wisdom of the United States’ government and military persuades the Commander-in-Chief to follow the restrictions laid…

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New IRA Interview On The Border, Brexit And Armed Resistance – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

Featured below is an interview by Channel 4 News in Britain with a spokesperson for the so-called New Irish Republican Army; though like the Provisional IRA before it the organisation does not use the qualifier, instead claiming continuity of title and authority with the military force that emerged from the coalition of revolutionary groupings during the Easter Rising of 1916. The masked volunteer, also dubbed with a voice-over to help preserve his anonymity, makes the following points about the violently…

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The Weak Arguments Against A United Ireland – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

Given recent events in the United Kingdom, with Brexit representing a glorified if long delayed sulk by the British at having their imperial toys taken away, renewed talk of a united Ireland is very much in the air. And very much raising the ire of the Wannabe Brit tendency in the news media who fear seeing any further reduction in the nation’s historical ties with our former masters to the east. As long as Greater England’s first and last colony…

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The UK Concedes A Backstop For An All Stop – AN SIONNACH FIONN – Politics Article

So after two years of contentious negotiations abroad and political chaos at home, London has returned to the original “Northern Ireland only” version of the backstop protocol in the proposed Withdrawal Agreement between the United Kingdom and the European Union. Except that in this second draft of the treaty the UK has moved from accepting a potential “backstop” for the Six Counties to recognising an immediate “all stop”, placing the contested region in a bespoke regulatory arrangement that will make…

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