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From: Church & State: Editorials
Date: January, 2010
By: Editorial
Title: The Church And Its Critics
"The Age Of My Craven Deference Is Finally Over". That was the headline on Professor Ronan Fanning's article on the Murphy Report (Sun. Independent 6 Dec.). Well, it was almost the headline. Fanning used the collective "our" rather than the personal "my". But in the case of the Professor of Modern History at the chief College of the National University the personal and the collective merge. The Professor (singular) determines in great part what characterised the plurality of those who went through the educational system to its highest level.

It became well known to us long ago that the paid intelligentsia of the state were craven in their attitude towards the Church. They were sceptics in private but were cynically respectful in public, because they were craven.

When we set out 36 years ago to reduce the role of the Church in the State, and to establish a viable national culture independent of the Church, and therefore necessarily in conflict with the Church, at least in the first instance, we met with very few amongst the official intelligentsia who were in private disagreement with us, but not one of them was willing to say in public what they said in private.

They were cynical participants in the status quo. They functioned by mental reservation.

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From: Irish Political Review: Editorials
Date: December, 2009
By: Editorial
Title: The North Convolutes
Northern Ireland continues to be a problem. That is its destiny. It was designed by its Creator to be a problem and it does not presume to thwart the will of the problem-setter.

The purpose for which Northern Ireland was conceived was to keep Protestants and Catholics together as coherent communities in conflict with each other, within the British state but excluded from its political life, disputing in various ways (from academic to military) over an issue which is incapable of being resolved.

There is disagreement about whether there is a strong case for seeing the Universe as a product of intelligent design which may presume the existence of a Designer. But there is no reasonable ground for doubting that Northern Ireland was constructed by the intelligence of a Designer. It was created by an Act of the Imperial Parliament at a moment when the Empire ruled the world and the wisdom of two and a half centuries of representative government was concentrated in Whitehall. When Britain did what it did in those circumstances, it was not without malice aforethought. What has been happening in Northern Ireland ever since is in line with what a realistic estimate of probabilities would have expected.

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From: Irish Political Review: Editorials
Date: November, 2009
By: Editorial
Title: A Watershed
When the Irish electorate voted for the Lisbon Treaty, it voted for a probable Blair Presidency in a Great Power Europe in which little countries must toe the line.  The Taoiseach seemed to acknowledge this fact by initially declaring his support for the chief warmonger of our time, Tony Blair, as President.  But something caused him to recoil from Blair and transfer his support to the low key ex-Taoiseach and ex-EU Ambassador to the USA, John Bruton.  What caused him to change his mind?  Could it be the "underhand diplomacy of bloggers and pygmy politicians" on which John Water (ex-Dancing At The Cross-Roads) pronounced anathema in his Irish Times column on October 30s (Only Blair Has The Right Stuff For Top EU Position).

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From: Church & State: Editorials
Date: October, 2009
By: Editorial
Title: RTE's Dunmanway Mystery
In a previous issue we reported on an exclusive Conference, organised by the Anglican Bishop of Cork on the subject of the oppression of Protestants as a body by the State and society in the 26 Counties, and on the need to persuade Protestants to affirm publicly that they have been oppressed as a body. The persuading of Protestants that they have been oppressed, and that they should make a public issue of this oppression, was described as pastoral work by the Bishop in an exchange of letters with Jack Lane of the Aubane Historical Society.

A programme about the killing of a number of Protestants in the Dunmanway region of West Cork in April 1922 was broadcast by RTE on 5th October. Senator Eoghan Harris has said in his Sunday Independent column that this programme was the outcome of the Bishop's Conference. In view of Senator Harris's close association with the Bishop in organising the Protestant Conference—where he seemed at times to be the prime mover—we can take this statement to be authoritative.

We give below a full transcript of the programme, which was dominated by Harris. It should be explained that the narration was entirely in Irish with English subtitles. The interviews with Professor John A. Murphy and Senator Harris's statements were also in Irish with English subtitles, except for one sentence which Senator Harris spoke in English. The interviews with local historians were entirely in English. Only two descendants of the victims of April 1922 were interviewed. One of them, who seemed to be English upper-class, spoke in English. The other, who seemed to own a farm in the area, spoke in English sometimes and in Irish at other times.

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From: Irish Foreign Affairs: Articles
Date: July, 2009
By: Brendan Clifford
Title: The launching of the Second World War
A dispute over Danzig was the occasion for the launching of the Second World War. Between the World Wars Danzig was a Free City under the authority of the League of Nations. The League’s High Commissioner for Danzig between 1934 and 1936 was an Irishman, Sean Lester. In 1940 Lester became the last General Secretary of the League, which was in collapse following the collapse of the British and French war effort in the war which they had declared on Germany on the Danzig issue.

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