Brian Feeney believes the IMC is doomed. He notes at the outset that, “the Taoiseach has indicated the irrelevance of the commission by repeating inside and outside the Dail that he doesn’t believe the it should impose sanctions on Sinn Féin”.Instead, he believes the next big question is where we go next. He suggests that nationalists should argue for:
For nationalists the only prospect of advancement of their aims is to beef up all-Ireland bodies, increase all-Ireland cooperation, get speaking rights in the Dail, establish northern representation in the Seanad, enhance the role of the British-Irish Inter-Governmental Council. All of that is already either agreed in fact or in principle.
He argues that Ahern should bypass Unionists and:
…start thinking of making aspects of the agreement other than the assembly and executive his priority, otherwise politics here will be static for the foreseeable future.
HOwever he also believes that:
In the meantime both governments have told Sinn Féin the ball is in its court, threby handing the initiative to the IRA. Brilliant.
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty