Theresa May’s speech in Belfast last Friday ripped up the agreed position on the Northern Ireland ‘backstop’ deal her government had reached with the EU-27 in December last year.
How to estimate the significance of an historic figure of recent passing? Martin McGuinness’s portrait now adorns murals in Ireland, alongside Wolf Tone, Constance Markievicz, James Connolly and similar giants of Ireland’s struggle for freedom. Such positioning is not outlandish. It’s what Martin earnt.
The current wave of attacks on migrants by governments in the US and Europe underlines the new centrality of racism in current Western politics and the developing links between Donald Trump and Europe’s far-right.
Sinn Féin held its Ard Fheis (conference) in Belfast on 15 and 16 June. Visitors and delegates were immediately made aware of a transition by the colour scheme. External and internal posters were purple and white; the stage back drop was purple and white with the platform party sitting at green covered tables.
The Democratic Unionist Party, currently sustaining in office the minority Tory government, is playing a key role in proposals to alter Britain’s parliamentary electoral boundaries to hamper the advance of Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour.
The arrival in office of new prime ministers, Giuseppe Conte in Italy on 1 June and Pedro Sánchez in Spain on 2 June, reflect the increasing turmoil that has entered European politics.