Irish Politics


In what way was Sunningdale better for Nationalists than the GFA?

Not being smart…genuinely interested to hear your view.

But even before the ink was dry…the DUP had already said they’d scupper it. And they were true to their word.


Sunningdale provided for a north south ministerial council with executive powers, we retained articles 2 & 3 and unlike gfa/ Belfast agreement no consent principle.


There are plenty of kids of wrong kid including being right. But I love the aggressive naivety all the same


Have to say it was before my time. But afaik…they were advisory powers on a small range of matters such as tourism and animal welfare…pretty much like the NSMC under the GFA.

In any event, that north/south council was rejected by the UPP…never mind the DUP.

Articles 2&3 were well-intentioned rhetoric - but meant practically little. It’s not like FF or FG were busting a gut for a UI then had the rug pulled from under them after the constitution was changed. And consent was always going to be enshrined by the southern govt regardless.

I don’t know. We are where we are…as they say.

Thankfully the troubles are over. We have enough political problems in peace time never mind conflict. Of course I’d like to see a UI in my lifetime…but I’ve never detected an appetite amongst parties in the south for one. No more than parties in England have an appetite for here.

Come to think of it…no one wants us ! (And that includes the football !)


That’s just wrong😏


I way reiterate my point again, it was a better deal for nationalists than gfa/ Belfast agreement.

They were executive powers.

I find your making assumptions rather than dealing with fact. Articles 2 & 3 were never rhetoric no more than any part of the constitution. The requirement of the consent of one section of the population over the majority was never there and was enshrined by the gfa/ Belfast agreement. To say the southern gov would have enshrined it anyway - they didn’t.

I don’t believe they are unfortunately.


Articles 2 & 3 were well-intentioned and aspirational.

But they made no practical difference to how FF and FG treated here. We’ve always been a bad smell to FG.

And consent was a de facto requirement of any southern govt. The southern govt no more wanted a million angry loyalists than the UK govt do.

Even now - and I say this despondently - I don’t think a single party in the Dail (other than SF), has unification in their manifesto.


Powers over tourism, conservation and animal welfare.

The UUP voted against it…and the DUP boycotted it.

The idea was killed at birth.


It is certainly true that the reaction of the unionists, backed by London, to the civil rights movement was the catalyst for the chaos that ensued.

NICRA and the stickies were naïve in believing that institutionalised sectarianism could be changed over night. The Provos emerged fundamentally as a defence force, but the IRA was not founded in 1969, nor was it a 6 county organisation. The objective was a 32 county Republic and civil rights within 6 counties was rejected violently; ironically by both the Provos and unionists.

Difference between 1973 and 1998 was that Provos were now prepared to accept Partition and internal settlement and Stormont. The unionists, not being very bright, were at first opposed to their actually having won the main argument! A lot of that was down to atavistic sectarianism that applied to all Catholics, not just the Provies.

Trade off for anyone into game theory was republicans surrendering their bottom line of Irish unity for unionists accepting that Catholics could share in running the British controlled part of Ireland. But crucially with any change to constitutional position of 6 counties being subject to consent/unionist veto.

Not difficult to see who came out best…


Some very good points being made.

Super conscious of talking about here as it’s normally about the past…and it bores a lot of people.

So apologies for anyone switching off…just not allowed to talk politics at home !


It was a better deal from a nationalist perspective than GFA regardless. From a republican perspective it wasn’t acceptable no more than the gfa is. The point being if you waged war for 30yrs in the name of an Ireland free of British rule and then accept less and concede more than what was on the table before your campaign, its defeat.
Republicans never saw Leinster house as delivering British withdrawal since its inception and again have been proven correct.


Hindsight is the best sight.

If you could take the main players back in time to the early 70s, including Paisley…and showed them a crystal ball of how here would pan out…my guess is that they’d have struck a deal.

And you’re right about Leinster house. My own guess is that a lot of southern politicans couldn’t really care labout here. Much in the same way I doubt MPs in London really care about the union with here.


I maybe using hindsight but the Republican leadership of their time have consistently been correct.


and Imagine if the main players knew brexit would come along. Getting back to modern times, the north has been dormund in recent times comepared to the 30 years of war that it went through but I honestly believe it has never been in the melting pot like 69 than it is now thanks to Brexit. I feel that the tension is buildng on the nationalist side at the thoughts of a hard border coming back and also the unthinkable for the unionists of the potential for a United ireland through referendum. Either scenario will throw us back into the dark ages I believe. @upthedall am I correct in that? Is there an atmosphere up there like I described re Brexit?


It’s hard to describe.

You’ve a lot of apathy towards politics and Stormont. Especially after the last deal collapsed.

We still have annual antagonisms with marches and bonfires.

Then there’s the RHI enquiry which smacks of corruption and incompetence. Meanwhile the likes of health and education are having budgets cut.

And then there’s Brexit which no one knows how it’s going to go. I actually think the DUP badly miscalculated the damage it could do.

And then Tyrone lost/were robbed of an AI!

To use a word up here to describe how a lot feel…scundered.


Did I mention that Tyrone’s loss/robbery added to people being scundered? Unless you’re from Armagh that is.


There will be an agreed Ireland, sooner rather than later, especially if Brexit happens. The numbers are heading fast in that direction. Unionist teens go to college in Dundee etc and don’t return long term. Third level colleges in the north have significant nationalist majorities in them. More and more educated, the nationalist population is getting stronger and more confident. Even the orange crew cannot hold back the tide and they will eventually smell the coffee. Ask Peter Robinson.


What would a United Ireland look like? A shared parliament between Dublin and Belfast? New flag and anthem etc etc…and the cost of taking the north in…of course there are advantages none more than having our country united but how much would people here in the south be prepared to give up?


I really don’t think it will ever happen. Before even getting into the economics of it, would it be worth risking a possible return to Loyalist violence? And then relying solely on our forces to deal with them? Its a romantic notion but its not worth anymore bloodshed imo.

Then we get into the economics of it, we simply would not be able to afford it.


This was the point I was making about ambivalence. If only the hard-core on either side realised that they have more in common and the people/states they are most loyal to/want to be part have treated them coldly for many years.

Brexit will strangely effect the large unionist farming community more than any other. Agriculture is the largest industry on the island and manys the proud orangeman sells his produce with a bord bia shamrock on it. But because politics is so scewded along unity/union lines many can’t be anti brexit.

If there is any physical border put in place I’d be very worried about the future. If the GB government does a no deal brexit and does not put a physical border it’s the abandonment of the territory.

In simplistic form the objections of unionists to unity are 1. There British 2. Home rule is some rule/Catholics in charge and 3. There would be some form or retribution/ massacre of protestants. 2 out of 3 of those things won’t happen in a modern setting.

The funniest thing is the identity ulster/british/northern Irish or irish. No matter what the political arrangement I’m sure daller and other people will continue to be proud Irishmen, Ulstermen and when not getting scundered proud Tyrone men. But those who completely reject being anyway Irish even though we share far more in common than the Westminster set, is the problem to unity.

Years of troubles alienated most of those who should have convinced there was nothing to fear. Could the numbers stack up for a united ireland, the older generation would vote along old lines but would the younger generation. Will brexit be better or worse for their long term future, this may be a major factor. I’ve no feeling that if there was a border poll in the north that it would be a yes to a united ireland.