The Northern Ireland Protocol must be the priority for all unionist voters in this election

A letter from Dr WB Smith:

By Letters
Tuesday, 5th April 2022, 12:24 am
Updated Tuesday, 5th April 2022, 12:31 am
When the UK suggested the EU could create its own border controls Coveney said we would be plunged back into the Troubles
When the UK suggested the EU could create its own border controls Coveney said we would be plunged back into the Troubles

Once again Owen Polley hits the nail on the head (‘Beattie’s unfortunate message to voters appalled by sea border,’ April 4, see below).

Given that the Protocol subjugates the Union, separates Northern Ireland from the rest of the United Kingdom, imposes EU laws and regulations on us without representation, adds to the cost of doing business, reduces the availability of goods, and pushes us towards a ‘united Ireland’ by stealth, unionists’ reaction has been extraordinarily moderate, probably because the implications are complex and not readily accessible.

Compare the outrage from Irish nationalism when the British reasonably suggested during the withdrawal negotiations that the EU could create its own border controls to protect its precious single market: we would be plunged back into the Troubles, Coveney said, and nobody blamed the IRA for raising the temperature or threatening violence.

Letter to the editor

Boris will not be moved to action by reasoned argument, principle or loyalty.

Our prime minister is motivated by his personal political interests and by those of the Conservative Party.

It is an unfortunate fact that he will not act on the Protocol if all seems to be ticking over smoothly in Northern Ireland. But he would savour the publicity he would get from stepping in to avert a political breakdown.

Supporters of the Protocol maintain that the electorate is more interested in other issues, but unionists will recognise that the quality of our public services and private lives depends on the survival of the Union: it keeps us healthier and wealthier, and the quality of all the other salient issues depends upon it.

The Protocol must be the priority for all unionist voters in this election.

Dr WB Smith, BT15

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