Thursday, May 25, 2006
Any lessons from Iraq?
Iraqs' problems dwarf those of Northern Ireland but her quest for a coalition government is worthy of note. Iraq now has a government which took three years to form. There was no talk of "joint stewardship" or similar threats whilst the Iraqis got down to the business of coalition building. Why then in Northern Ireland is the same process time limited? Is it because the form of government on offer to Northern Ireland is so inflexible as to make discussion about a coalition unnecessary? After all d'Hondt does all the hard work.
Blair talks about his hopes for the Iraqi government to go full term. It is not unreasonable to assume he has similar ambitions for the stability of any NI executive. In those circumstances is the imposition of a dead line wise? Stable government in Northern Ireland will require a fundamental shift away from the enforced coalition of the Belfast Agreement. It will also require a degree of cross community good will that has been lacking to date. This blogger expects that task to take considerably longer than six months.
the only answer is that Blairs ambitions are a moral and that his rhetoric is merely an attempt to sanitise the pursuit of these ambitions, (in this case socalist loyalty and material necessity )