Thursday 22 February 2018

Liam Collins: Butter, whiskey . . . and corpses: the glory days of Border smugglers

A disused customs post on the border between Dundalk in the Republic of Ireland and Newry in Northern Ireland
A disused customs post on the border between Dundalk in the Republic of Ireland and Newry in Northern Ireland
Liam Collins

Liam Collins

It has an almost mythical place in the Irish psyche, that invisible line that split villages, farms and communities and political discourse and is now threatening to return: the Border.

It's as if we've forgotten how it worked since the border posts were demolished after the EU's 'internal market' came into being in the early 1990s. Later due to the Peace Process, the sinister British army watch towers were dismantled and the landscape blended so that it was only when travellers from the south saw a red telephone box that they realised they were now in a different country.

Now it seems Revenue Officials have travelled to parts of Europe to investigate how borders between EU and non-EU states actually work in the 21st century and how the concept could be re-introduced in the event of a so-called 'hard' Brexit.

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