January 06, 2018

The Westminster convention of non-interference in Northern Ireland (1921 - 1969)

'The Lobby of the House of Commons, 1886' by Liborio Prosperi ('Lib'), published in Vanity Fair Christmas Supplement 1886

Paul Rose, MP for Manchester Blackley, helped to set up the Campaign for Democracy in Ulster in 1965. Speaking at a debate on Northern Ireland in the House of commons on 22 April 1969 (just before Bernadette Devlin made her maiden speech) Paul Rose said:

"We also faced the convention of non-interference, a convention which in that debate prompted my hon. Friend the Member for Thurrock (Mr Delargy) to ask you, Mr. Speaker, what, apart from Short Brothers and Harland and Wolff, we could mention in a debate on Northern Ireland. 
That convention is dead. It was killed when my hon. Friend the Member for Belfast, West (Mr Fitt) was seen by millions of television viewers, his head streaming with blood after a vicious batoning while surrounded by a group of members of the Royal Ulster Constabulary."
I previously wrote that The Irish republican fight is with with Irish monarchists, not England. And also noted that TK Whitaker said It is much too naive to believe that Britain simply imposed Partition on Ireland. Newton Emerson wrote:
"From the creation of Northern Ireland in 1921, devolution was intended to make everyone feel less British and ultimately to ease us out of the United Kingdom altogether. 
At first, unionists did not want “home rule” of any description, but they quickly grew fond of the feeling of having a little country of their own."
An anonymous man from Cork and a unionist said in 1921 (via Wilfred Ewart):
"Everybody’s taken a step to the left. Your old Nationalists have joined pacifist Sinn Fein; pacifist Sinn Fein has become active Republican; we Unionists take our stand on the old Nationalism. Although, Dillonism is dead."

'John Bull ask'd at Saint Stephens!!!' The House of Commons is transformed into a church and we witness the Banns being read for the Act of Union, the marriage of England and Ireland. The Speaker's Chair is a pulpit with Pitt reading the Banns. John Bull is the groom sitting besides his demure bride, Miss Hibernia Spinster. (Date: 1800.)

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