The parts of Great Britain and Ireland need a mutually supportive deal for the future — and it exists in the Good Friday Agreement

Letter to the editor
Letter to the editor

For better or for worse, leaving the EU, with or without a “deal”, will have significant effects on the economy, businesses, jobs, incomes, costs etc etc for the UK, and for other countries in the EU.

Pro and anti Brexit pundits will argue the pros and cons but they have no crystal balls. They cannot predict the future. We do however have the benefit of hindsight, if it occurs to us to use it.

What did the UK gain and what did it lose when we were taken into the EU by the Tory government of the day, without an initial referendum? There were significant effects then on the economy, businesses, jobs, incomes, costs etc etc., and inflation has risen by 1167% to the present level.

What were the effects on the economies etc of the Commonwealth and other countries that we abandoned when we joined the EU?

England and subsequently the UK (which included Ireland) spent three hundred years building and plundering an empire which morphed into a Commonwealth (Common Wealth ?).

When plunder became less readily plunderable from the Commonwealth, did the UK see easier pickings in Europe? Was being outside of the EU so bad that we needed to join it? If so, why now leave the EU? Is being in the EU now worse than being outside it?

Does the EU have a foreseeable future? Historically, no union or empire has survived indefinitely.

Does the UK have a foreseeable future? A century ago it lost twenty six counties of Ireland, and more recently almost lost Scotland. Whatever the future of the Union, the constituent parts of Great Britain and Ireland need a mutually supportive arrangement to weather the storms of the future, in or out of the EU.

The basis for such an arrangement already exists in the form of the Good Friday Agreement. The north-south and east-west governmental institutions enshrined therein must surely inhibit the possibility of one party leaving the EU while the other stays in.

The UK government, a signatory to the Agreement, supported by the DUP, who did not sign the agreement, seem oblivious to this, or are ignoring it. Why has the Irish government remained silent on this? Are they afraid to articulate that Ireland too may have to leave the EU if UK Bexit proceeds?

Perhaps the Republic should have been included in the referendum.

The overall result to leave may well have been the same due to England’s larger “leave” voting population, but the fact that three of the five autonomous constituent regions would have voted to remain would have constrained the implementation of what was meant to be only an indicative referendum.

Dennis Golden, Strabane