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Windemere

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Reply with quote  #46 
Actually, the Good Friday Agreement was the best possible agreement that could have been worked out to end the Irish Troubles.  It ended the 30 years of bombings and violence that had been going on in Northern Ireland, and it established a political framework that both Unionists and Nationalists were able to deal with. The Unionists will never accept becoming part of Eire, and the Nationalists will never accept the dismemberment of Ireland. The Good Friday Agreement allows both groups to grudgingly cooperate with each other and administer Ulster in a peaceful way. Britain and Ireland seem satisfied with the power-sharing features. The Good Friday Agreement was a compromise, and people are  never entirely happy with compromises. Everyone wants to have their own way. But almost everyone in Northern Ireland  is happy that the violence, which took 3600 lives,  has ceased. Sinn Fein is still committed to Irish reunification, and always will be. And DUP is committed to maintaining the union with Britain, and always will be. But they both have at least renounced violence as a solution. It would be a mistake to become too complacent and think that everything is fine. There are extremists on both sides who'd readily  resort to violence again if they thought that it would serve their purpose, and if they could succeed in finding enough support. Nor is it easy for Sinn Fein and DUP to cooperate with each other, as can be seen with the current state of suspended animation that the Northern Irish Assembly is going through. They each have a contradictory longterm goal.  But they have at least achieved a manageable modus vivendi for a Northern Irish provincial government. There isn't any better solution on the horizon. There are some problems which have no solution, and all that can be hoped for is to bear with things, and maintain things on an even keel.
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Wessexman

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Reply with quote  #47 
The GFA was a surrender to Fenian terrorism. We had already infiltrated and crushed the IRA to the point they had been forced to declare a unilateral ceasefire. The GFA basically gave that all away and gave in to terrorists. It was the culmination of shameful behaviour from both Blair and Major and a very bad precedent. It was also, in hindsight, doubly pointless, as the IRA relied on American support, which would have dried up after 9/11.

The fundamental issue is you don't give in to terrorists, especially when you don't need to. It sets a terrible example for the future. I think the best solution would have been rule by Westminster untill such time as the Ulster was ready to rule itself, if that ever happens (as the current situation reminds us, it is hasn't happened yet).

We still here dark hints about what Britain's perfectly lawful possible actions on Brexit might trigger (of course, this usually comes from British Europhiles, who often struggle with loyalty to their country).

Of course, the GFA happened, so this is all whistling Dixie, but that's one of my favourite tunes.
Peter

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Reply with quote  #48 
Mine too. But I disagree about the Good Friday Agreement. Crushing the IRA militarily was possible and would have been much more satisfying than seeing murderers like McGuinness walk free and even enter the provincial government. But the whole cycle of violence would have just started up again after, at most, a few years' respite. The Good Friday Agreement offers the possibility of the violence ending altogether and, in time, community reconciliation. So I think it was the right choice to make, distasteful as some of its consequences might be.
Wessexman

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Reply with quote  #49 
You can certainly make a plausible case for that. I think 9/11 and the withdrawal of the possibility of continued American support makes it less likely, but that wouldn't have been known in the middle of the 90s.
azadi

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Reply with quote  #50 
I admit, that Gaddafi was a brutal dictator, and he committed a lot of crimes. He abolished the Libyan monarchy and he supported international terrorism. I like Gaddafi, because he was eccentric and because he supported traditional African monarchies. In addition, Gaddafi ceased to support international terrorism.  
MatthewJTaylor

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Reply with quote  #51 
Quote:
Originally Posted by azadi
I admit, that Gaddafi was a brutal dictator, and he committed a lot of crimes. He abolished the Libyan monarchy and he supported international terrorism. I like Gaddafi, because he was eccentric and because he supported traditional African monarchies. In addition, Gaddafi ceased to support international terrorism.  

That's an awful lot if "cons" with very few "pros".
I think you should reconsider your conclusions.

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Murtagon

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Reply with quote  #52 
Quote:
Originally Posted by azadi
I admit, that Gaddafi was a brutal dictator, and he committed a lot of crimes. He abolished the Libyan monarchy and he supported international terrorism. I like Gaddafi, because he was eccentric and because he supported traditional African monarchies. In addition, Gaddafi ceased to support international terrorism.  


Yeah, because they killed him. It's kind of hard to do that when your're dead.

Gaddafi also held several Bulgarian nurses imprisoned on some flimsy charges. A big part of my childhood was spent watching the trials in Libya on the news (don't ask). An eccentric man who usurped a monarch in a cowardly manner.
azadi

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Reply with quote  #53 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Murtagon


Yeah, because they killed him. It's kind of hard to do that when your're dead.

Gaddafi also held several Bulgarian nurses imprisoned on some flimsy charges. A big part of my childhood was spent watching the trials in Libya on the news (don't ask). An eccentric man who usurped a monarch in a cowardly manner.

Gaddafi ceased to support international terrorism in 2003.
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