Talk of reunification and reunification March 14, 2017Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
I’m sure I’m not alone in being a bit surprised by the increasing talk around the issue of Irish reunification – I’d always thought it would be a long drawn out process. But Brexit has certainly seemed to, at least rhetorically, place it front and centre in a way that it hasn’t been for years. I can’t help but think that SF’s assiduous efforts in the background have also borne fruit. But it goes way beyond SF. To hear FG and FF mentioning it seriously is quite a sea change. And as noted in the IT at the weekend, the results of the Assembly Elections this month have further reinforced a sense of significant change. Then there’s the exemplary effects of Scottish moves – so far unsuccessfully, towards that goal for themselves. It’s not that the Union is under direct threat of disintegration, but it has never before seemed quite so fragile.
And perhaps that Brexit vote – one where a majority of those in the North voted for Remain, added to the Assembly Election, reinforces a sense that even if a majority of those in NI are not in favour of unity there’s something more than a simple pro-union position at work.
All that said it is difficult at this point to see any clear movement forward, or rather clear paths forward. Which is not to say they don’t or won’t exist, but that the structure remain embedded in pre-existing relationships and will continue to do so.
Indeed the point was made that it is possible that in the short to medium term there might actually be a divergence away from unity with the North ever more isolated behind a reinforced border – one could see a situation should Scottish independence come to pass where that might actually strengthen pro-union sentiment in North (and as noted on this site in comments by some that might increase it in Britain).
But surely none of this was in the minds of those forces who pushed or supported Brexit from whatever position a year back? Which underscores how poor the analyses were then from those quarters.