Wednesday 25 April 2018

McGuinness and the Dark Republic

Sir -- Your unrelenting pursuit of Martin McGuinness has seemed at times to be over the top and possibly counter-productive. However, the campaign itself and the questions you have articulated have exposed how far Sinn Fein is from the culture and ethos of the majority of people 'down here' -- and maybe the entire island.

During the RTE television debate, (October 13), Martin McGuinness made it clear that his first 'action' on being elected would be to set up a meeting with the 'Government' -- and confront the latter with a demand for a jobs taskforce. Whatever about the specific intrinsic merits, (let alone popularity), of such a proposal, (or the efficacy of the present Government's policies), it is very definitely not the role of the President to intervene in what is an 'executive' function -- and to determine government policy. The makings of a nice little constitutional crisis. Not protecting the Constitution but destabilising it. Not protecting us but weakening us at a moment of great threat.

It is not unreasonable for Sinn Fein to view this election as a party political gambit. However, it raises the question of where Mr McGuinness's priorities lie. Is it with a 'party'? Or is there something more fundamental? In the debate, he sought to convince us that he had never 'actually' taken the IRA oath. Of course he has worked on an hourly basis to make the 'peace' work. He and his colleagues have placed their lives on the line, as did Michael Collins and Kevin O'Higgins. But would he be where he is today, indeed a candidate in this election, if his whole life had not been an unquestionable affirmation of his loyalty to the Dark Republic which has ravaged this island for 90 years -- without a moral, let alone a constitutional mandate, with an ethos where the ends justify the means?

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