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The Irish question

(529 Posts)
varian Sun 26-Nov-17 15:09:43

Some of us would like more than anything to remain in the EU, along with our Irish friends, but if we have to leave then at least we hope to remain in the single market and customs union.

If the extreme brexiteers have their way this will not happen. The Republic of Ireland will keep free movement of people, goods and services with the rest of the EU. We will not keep any of these freedoms, so what will happen at the Irish border?

Blinko Sun 26-Nov-17 15:12:27

Well, one 'solution' could be a 'soft' border with the Irish Republic but a 'hard' border with mainland uk. That'd go down like a ton of bricks, I think.

varian Sun 26-Nov-17 15:16:39

There are more than 300 border crossing points along the Irish border. Perhaps we will have a wall (we could force the Irish tompay for it just like Trump's border wall with Mexico which of course the Mexicans will pay for).

To guard the border 24/7 we could hire about a hundred guards and customs officials for every crossing point, armed with big guns.

I know that a lot of effort has been put into solving the Irish problem since the "troubles" of the 1970s but so what? We'll be taking back control. It's the will of the people.

Coolgran65 Sun 26-Nov-17 16:46:29

Long before N.I. was a part of the European Union we travelled between N.I. and the Republic of Ireland freely. You were only aware of crossing the border when the road signage changed.

varian Sun 26-Nov-17 17:01:42

There was no problem when neither the UK nor the Irish republic were EU members. The problem which no-one seems to have a solution for, would arise when Eire is still in and the UK is out.

MargaretX Sun 26-Nov-17 17:14:41

Thank goodness we have M. Barnier. He will expect that proper plans have been made to keep the border peaceful
and has seen no plans yet with only two weeks to go.

It might derail Brexit ............ ooh that's a thought!

MaizieD Sun 26-Nov-17 18:27:43

It's not the movement of people that's the problem, Coolgran, it's the movement of goods. Once the UK is out of the Customs Union there will need to be a hard border between the EU (Republic of Ireland) and the UK (Northern Ireland) so that customs checks can be carried out. We can only at present freely travel goods between EU countries because we are still in the EU and therefore in the Customs Union.

We can't have a hard border in the Irish Sea because the DUP would never permit it and it is they who are propping up the tory government, so the tories aren't going to upset them.

The problem would be solved by the re-unification of Ireland...

varian Sun 26-Nov-17 18:36:33

The movement of people could also be a problem. A citizen of any EU country could travel freely to the Irish Republic and if we had no hard border, she/he could then go on to Northern Ireland and freely enter the UK.

I am not saying all, but at least some, of those who voted to leave were motivated to keep these EU immigrants out. How do you suppose that will happen?

Tegan2 Sun 26-Nov-17 20:13:26

It horrifies me that people who voted for brexit seem to care so little for the people of Ireland and the possibility of 'the troubles' returning. I've got no idea what the solution to the problem might be but at least the EU seem to care. I'm sure I saw a quote from Johnson saying he wasn't aware that Ireland would be such a problem confused, but I need to find it.

Deedaa Sun 26-Nov-17 20:14:47

It beggars belief that no one seems to have thought about this before the referendum - except that it doesn't ................

maryeliza54 Sun 26-Nov-17 20:25:30

Well I’m not worried at all - I’ve been reassured on GN by all those who voted leave that they had done all their homework before deciding to vote so one of them will surely be along in a moment with the answer.

Coolgran65 Sun 26-Nov-17 20:42:39

''''The problem would be solved by the re-unification of Ireland...''''

Methinks (possibly) solving one problem to cause many others ??
But that's best left alone.

grumppa Sun 26-Nov-17 21:15:03

It ought to beggar belief that neither the Brexit nor the Remain campaigners gave any prominence to the Irish border issue during the referendum campaign.

It ought to, but alas it doesn't.

Smithy Sun 26-Nov-17 21:30:59

The remainers did not need to consider the problem - because if we had all voted remain the problem wouldn't have existed.

MaizieD Sun 26-Nov-17 21:52:54

It wasn't a serious suggestion, Coolgran .

grumppa Sun 26-Nov-17 22:01:43

The Remain campaigners had a responsibility to highlight issues such as this one in the face of the simplistic "take back control" approach of the Brexit spokespeople.

Having said that, it is unfortunate, to say the least, that nobody anywhere seems to have properly considered, beyond the bare bones of Article 50, what the mechanism of leaving the EU should be. I suppose this is because it ever occurred to Brussels that a country would choose to leave the European Paradise. (It hadn't occurred to me, either)

Tegan2 Sun 26-Nov-17 22:04:28

Any warnings about anything were just grouped as 'project fear'. that's why the leave campaign was so clever.

varian Sun 26-Nov-17 22:11:10

Or those who believed it were so easily fooled

durhamjen Sun 26-Nov-17 22:15:52

www.taxresearch.org.uk/Blog/2017/11/26/will-ireland-really-bring-the-end-of-the-union-for-the-uk/

He has an Irish passport, and has looked into it a lot.

durhamjen Sun 26-Nov-17 22:23:55

"Finally, for now, let’s note that Brexit is, almost certainly, the precursor for the end of the Union too: Scotland would be holding another referendum on leaving the UK faster than you could imagine if Brexit happens, and don’t rule out Northern Ireland pondering its future as well. To say Brexit is literally a little England view is to be kind to it.

I could, and no doubt will, expand these themes over time. But the point is, this is ultimately a decision to be taken by instinct. All big decisions in life are. And there is no doubt that in that context I have only one instinct, and that is that we must stay."

Part of an article by Richard Murphy in February 2016.

mcem Sun 26-Nov-17 22:29:40

tegan I so agree. From day one of the debate I've been concerned about the border question and couldn't understand why it seemed to be ignored - until now with decisions needed in couple of weeks.
Those of us who remember how dreadful things were before the agreement must be horrified at the thought of a breakdown.
NI politics are very shaky and far from being in a good position for calm and sensible decision-making.

Devorgilla Sun 26-Nov-17 22:32:03

Gladstone, of Liverpool statue fame, said his mission was to pacify Ireland. He didn't succeed and it was a lot simpler then, so I'm not holding my breath on this one.
Just once, I would like our Brexit negotiators to come forward with a comprehensive plan as a starting point that everyone involved could debate in a serious and intelligent way and come to an agreement.
Yes, we could propose a united Ireland. Trouble is, according to some of my friends in the South, the Republic doesn't want the North. Too expensive and too bolshie.
And then, lurking in the wings are the SNP. If Ireland is a special case, why not them? Perhaps England should secede from the rest of the UK and just Brexit on their own. Just a thought.

Devorgilla Sun 26-Nov-17 22:34:09

I see dj you got to the Little England bit before me.

durhamjen Sun 26-Nov-17 22:47:50

Not me, Devorgilla, I wouldn't dare. It's a quote from Richard Murphy, who is an expert on Ireland as well as tax.

durhamjen Sun 26-Nov-17 22:55:27

Richard Murphy also says that Liam Fox does not understand the Irish question at all.

www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/nov/26/liam-fox-northern-ireland-border-eu-trade-deal-uk-brexit