Another ‘historic’ meeting for the history scrap book…

Everything seems to be cooking for Northern Ireland’s long awaited re-entry into democratic politics. The guest list is so long for that day, I am not even going to attempt ask for a press pass for the Great Hall on 8th May. Meantime, the ‘historic’ photo ops are piling up, the latest being when Ian meets Bertie at the Battle of the Boyne site.

  • Oilibhear Chromaill

    Is the non attendance of Martin McGuinness at this event down to the fact that he wasn’t invited by the Irish Government or that he’s too busy electioneering? Or is it just electioneering on the part of Bertie, not wanting to share airtime/historic photo-opportunities with an electoral rival during the middle of a campaign?

    And given that he’s going to be used as part of Fianna Fáil, The Republican Party(to give the party its full title)’s campaign, how does Ian Paisley feel about that? After all he was never too keen on Irish government ministers taking sides in northern elections, was he?

  • eranu

    ian and berties warm handshake a while back was quite a good picture to see. the battle of the boyne probably wont be that good to look at, as it will only be 2 men standing in a field beside a river.
    the photo op id like to see would be a rerun of the snowballing of the southern taoiseachs car in the 60s (i think). no bitterness or anything, just a bit of a laugh. it would be funny to see bertie get pelted by ian and martin this winter. if we ever get snow again that is…

  • I must admit that the same thought occured to me too, though given the advantage to Sinn Fein of the 8th May restart date in NI (Slugger has heard whispers that Bertie had been planning to go as early as the 11th), we might reasonably infer that ‘the Doc’ is in a profoundly generous mood towards all nationalist players, north and south of the border. What’s cost to him in either case?

  • Cromwell


    I wouild imagine Big Ian would probably rather be used by Berdie to the detriment of the Shinners.

    On a lighter note I hope Harry Hill’s hanging about in the background, ‘Fiigghhtt’!

  • lib2016

    ‘..Northern Ireland’s long awaited re-entry into democratic politics?’

    Since the whole point of setting up the Northern Ireland entity was to obstruct democracy when do you imagine there was a period of democracy as it is normally understood in Western Europe in existence here?

    Neither British rule nor one-party tion by unionism qualifies as a functioning democracy. The GFA is a step towards setting up one but it has yet to succeed.

  • Now lib this is an extremely exacting standard, that even the new arrangements would have trouble passing muster for:

    “…do you imagine there was a period of democracy as it is normally understood in Western Europe in existence here?”

    Paul Arthur’s Special Relationships is particularly good on how just how dysfunctional that ‘democracy’ actually was. Most of its major legislation was brought in because Westminster pulled rank on it.

    It certainly struggles to call itself a high (or indeed any kind of)performance democracy, but I’m not sure what else we can call it? The same cannot be said for the 30 years of direct rule that came in its place.

  • Gonzo


    You don’t need a press pass for the Great Hall, so I wouldn’t let that hold me back.

  • Iano

    Ian Paisley visiting the site of a papal victory. Who would have thought that possible?