Saturday 16 December 2017

Taoiseach who earned his spurs as peacemaker

Despite being mocked for his cowboy image, Albert Reynolds was a lucky gambler, writes John Drennan

Albert Reynolds
Albert Reynolds
Bertie Ahern, Charlie Haughey and Albert Reynolds. Photo: Maxpix
Gerry Adams and John Hume flanking Albert Reynolds during peace talks on the North
John Drennan

John Drennan

Even before the public revelations that he is losing the cruellest of wars with Alzheimer's there was a sense within politics that Albert Reynolds was Ireland's lost Taoiseach. By lost we mean that he was one of those rare politicians who, on becoming Taoiseach, stayed for too short rather than too long a spell in office.

Such an analysis would come as quite the surprise to his contemporaries for Albert was certainly not a loved Taoiseach; particularly among the media.

Some never forgave him for his role as one of the hungry, sharp-toothed young men who shunted 'honest' Jack Lynch off the political stage.

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