First, green and red customs lanes confirm in themselves that in moving from Great Britain to Northern Ireland you are moving from one customs territory to another — the very essence of the sovereignty-busting Article 5 of the protocol.
One could imagine and understand their meaning if there were green and red lanes between England and an independent Scotland, which belonged to the EU, but never so long as Scotland is an integral part of the UK. Likewise, our constitutional integrity necessitates the repudiation of green and red customs lanes.
Their very ameliorations confirm the partitioning of the UK through a border in the Irish Sea.
Thousands expected to take part in 'Derry Day' this weekend
Two new arrivals in DUP camp as UUP councillor Alan Lewis defects alongside serial party-switcher Henry Reilly
Brexit: There’s a fundamental con trick being played over Liz Truss’ Northern Ireland Protocol Bill says Lord Empey
BBC political editor Enda McClafferty sees the funny side after he’s caught on camera underdressed for live TV report
Rishi Sunak’s treasury ‘no friend of ours in fight against Protocol’: Paisley
The second reality that the green and red customs lane proposal ignores and does not address is the invasive Article 7 of the protocol.
Article 7 is that which applies a huge body of EU law — the EU acquis — directly and irreversibly to Northern Ireland, as articulated in Annex 2 of the protocol to the extent of 300 such EU laws which we can’t change but must implement as a colonised rule taker.
The undemocratic import of Article 7 is breathtaking.
We, a part of the United Kingdom which elects MPs and MLAs are governed in matters of trade and manufacturing of goods and standards by laws we don’t make and can’t change. How any democrat — unionist, nationalist or other — can acquiesce, nay support, such abject subjection to foreign dictatorship is beyond comprehension.
Thirdly, the unacceptable green and red customs lane proposal leaves untouched the monstrous impositions of Articles 8 and 10 of the protocol which retain Northern Ireland under the EU’s VAT regime and severe State Aid rules.
Once more, taxation without representation hallmarks this undemocratic excess, whereby we are governed not by UK rules and laws, but by foreign diktat.
So, anyone who thinks green and red customs lanes would neuter and deal with the protocol is seriously deluded and does not get the fundamental offence that must be removed — namely, a protocol which annexes us into foreign jurisdiction.
• Jim Allister QC MLA is TUV leader
• Other comment articles:
• Samuel Morrison May 26: The idea that ‘Planters’ don’t belong here was a pretext for murder
• Editorial May 26: Least unionists can do is show contempt for Congressman Neal’s pro-Irish bias
• Jeffrey Donaldson May 25: The UN condemns colonies, yet Northern Ireland has become one
• Brian John Spencer May 25: Thank goodness for those voices who challenge the anti British imbalance in Ireland
• Editorial May 25: Unionists should make clear that they have a distinct stance on legacy of terror
• Jeff Dudgeon May 24: Anglican church won’t call Cork massacre of Protestants sectarian
• Owen Polley May 23: Many culprits are to blame for Irish Sea border
• Ben Lowry May 21: There’s been a shift in London towards sympathy for NI over protocol
• Ben Lowry May 21: I do love Bangor, but it is hard to think of it as a city
• Ben Habib May 18: There isn’t even a real threat of unilateral action on protocol
• Jim Allister May 17: Boris Johnson flew into NI with weak message on the protocol
• Ruth Dudley Edwards May 17: Thank you Lithuania for pursuing Omagh bomber
• Henry McDonald May 14: Will Boris Johnson deliver beyond his rhetoric?
• Ben Lowry May 14: Here are six of the broad reasons for the turn against unionism