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 Enda wants to end neutrality

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PostSubject: Re: Enda wants to end neutrality   Mon Dec 29, 2008 10:29 pm

Helium Three wrote:
DCU researcher Dr Karen Devine cuts through the Lisbon doesn't affect neutrality waffle.


http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/opinion/2008/1224/1229728523303.html

A neutral state cannot legally or politically sign up to the mutual assistance clause in the Lisbon Treaty because it is an alliance commitment that violates neutrality.

From the point of view of neutrality, the legal implications of the Lisbon Treaty are important and significant. The Lisbon Treaty creates a new "European Union" that has legal personality; this provides a basis for the EU to act in the realm of international affairs. For example, MEPs argue that the EU should become a fully-fledged permanent member of the UN Security Council as soon as its legal personality is recognised, and that the future EU foreign minister provided for in the Lisbon Treaty should represent the EU on the security council.

The European Court of Justice's lack of jurisdiction highlights the problem that the Common Foreign and Security Policy and Common Security and Defence Policy suffer from both a democratic deficit and a deficit regarding the rule of law.


...


The Irish Times, to its credit, published a lengthy analysis of Lisbon by Dr Devine over three days in November. In one of the articles she describes what she politely refers to as the two-level game, where our government says one thing to other governments, and something else to us:

In this "game", parties in government attend to the "supra-state" level of the European Council and the demands from the larger member states such as France, Germany, Spain and the UK to achieve a maximalist EU defence policy agenda, and at the same time, face another set of largely incompatible demands from the "sub-state" level, stemming from the public's active neutrality policy preferences.

Having agreed to the supra-state level demands of ESDP, seen in the binding mutual security and defence commitments contained in the Lisbon Treaty, parties in government try to convince the sub-state constituency of public opinion that their neutrality agenda has been safeguarded through a combined strategy of minimising discussion of ESDP and reformulating concepts of military neutrality, in order to avoid punishment at the polls and to ensure EU treaty referendum amendments are passed.



Her full piece is available free on the Times site on the following days-

Protecting neutrality in a militarised EU - The Irish Times - Thu, Nov 27, 2008

Tug of war between public and political elites - The Irish Times - Wed, Nov 26, 2008

Neither friend nor foe: the Irish position - The Irish Times - Tue, Nov 25, 2008

Dr Devine's writings just show that academics can sometimes not have a clue what they are talking about.

There is not legally neutral. There is no such thing. Therefore there is no reason in law why Ireland cannot choose to enter any alliance or any organisation it wishes.

Neutrality in Ireland has been a tactical approach we have had. Its origins occurred during the War of Independence when President de Valera suggested that Ireland give a guarantee never to allow itself to be used to attack Britain in an international war. He modelled his proposal on the then relationship between Cuba and the United States.

He resurrected the idea as part of the deal for the withdrawal of the British from the treaty ports in 1938.

Ireland's neutrality in WWII was a sham. We were to all intents and purposes part of the Allies. We spied on the Germans for the Allies. We supplied them with secret information all the way through, including having a crucial role in D-Day when we warned the Allies to change the date (which they did) based on incoming weather patterns coming to Ireland and which would hit Normandy. We were able to supply them in detail with information so they knew the best time to attack based on the weather - while deliberately giving the Nazis false weather information so that they would believe an attack would not happen on that day. We interned Nazis in Ireland while 'accidentally' letting Allied soldiers and airmen give us the slip - courtesy of maps supplied and none too subtle hints ('now you just want here for three days until we arrest you and don't you dare go over that roadway there, turn left, travel 15 miles, take a left and cross the border! You got that? Don't you dare go over that roadway there, turn left, travel 15 miles, take a left and cross the border!').

Allied leaders were fulsome in praise for the Irish behaviour while pretending to be neutral. When a pissed Churchill attacked de Valera - mainly because he was still bitter over de Valera's antics during the Treaty debates - his own senior military people turned on him and told him that de Valera had played a blinder: if Ireland had officially joined the Allies it would have been a drain on resources for them. Posing as being neutral while being anything but was much more useful to the Allies.

After the war we applied to join the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation but were rejected. That and that alone is why we we are not in NATO. If we had been accepted we would have been in NATO since 1949!

Ireland's neutrality is a tactical sham - meaningless nonsense in which we have been close to the western organisations on every occasion in every war.

So Ms Devine's claims about Ireland being legally neutral are pure unadultrated bullshit, as ill-informed and simplistic as her chronic misrepresentation and misunderstanding of the Lisbon Treaty. The fact that the EU is getting a legal personality means nothing. It has always has it de facto since the start. When the EU needed to express a legal identity it simply used its 'European Community' hat, as the EC exists within the EU as a 'pillar' or section and all foreign and defence issues were dealt with through the EC. All that is changing is that as a reorganisation the internal pillars are being abolished and merged into the EU. So the EU will have exactly the same legal personality as before. All that changes is what it calls itself when it uses it.

The only place anything remotely equivalent to the mythical neutrality exists is in the triple lock requirement in the constitution. That is not neutrality either. It simply regulates the conditions under which Ireland enters conflicts whether as combatants, peace keepers or peace enforcers. There is no such thing in Irish law, and never has been, as Irish neutrality. It has been a tactic, nothing more, and usually has been a dishonest tactic to explain our tactical role in WWII or the fact that our application to join NATO was vetoed.

Dr Devine, quite frankly, is speaking through her posterior.
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PostSubject: Re: Enda wants to end neutrality   Mon Dec 29, 2008 11:43 pm

I have to agree that the neutrality is an appearance rolled out when it is convenient only: after all the Irish army participates in both the Chad and Afghanistan forces, and have been censured for inaction in relation to US abductions via Shannon.
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PostSubject: Re: Enda wants to end neutrality   Mon Dec 29, 2008 11:50 pm

Yes that is what it has been brought to all right. Not that the powers that be admit it to be so. In the Horgan Case that Hermes mentions, the government insisted that facilitating tens of thousands of battle-bound foreign troops at Shannon was consistent with neutrality. So they try even in the teeth of all logic to cling to the N word, even as they traduce the concept. The judge did not buy it.

This is where we have moved to while all the time successive governments insist nothing is changing.

So here we are again - even more loudly now they insist NOTHING IS CHANGING, just sign here and all will be well.

People with time and resources to look objectively at whether this is true, people like Karen Devine, perform a real public service.

No wonder they attract such abuse from the vested interests.
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PostSubject: Re: Enda wants to end neutrality   Tue Dec 30, 2008 12:06 am

Helium Three wrote:
Yes that is what it has been brought to all right. Not that the powers that be admit it to be so. In the Horgan Case that Hermes mentions, the government insisted that facilitating tens of thousands of battle-bound foreign troops at Shannon was consistent with neutrality. So they try even in the teeth of all logic to cling to the N word, even as they traduce the concept. The judge did not buy it.

This is where we have moved to while all the time successive governments insist nothing is changing.

So here we are again - even more loudly now they insist NOTHING IS CHANGING, just sign here and all will be well.

People with time and resources to look objectively at whether this is true, people like Karen Devine, perform a real public service.

No wonder they attract such abuse from the vested interests.

I'm not aware that they do - although they attract a certain amount of disagreement from those who disagree. I doubt either Papal Knight or I can be described as vested interests.
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