Irish backstop –
Sir, – Your editorial references Danish foreign minister Kristian Jensen, who perfectly captured Brexit’s foolish essence: “There are two kinds of European nations. There are small nations and there are countries that have not yet realised they are small nations” (“The Irish Times view on Brexit day: Britain’s great leap backwards”, January 31st).
Britain’s ambassador to Denmark, Dominic Schroeder, crossly replied that he saw no indications “of a diminished or diminishing power”.
But as the Soleimani assassination, the Huawei controversy and Donald Trump’s Middle Eastern plan have already shown, Boris Johnson now has to dance on the head of a pin trying to reconcile Britain’s natural affinity to its European neighbours with attempting to avoid offending the thin-skinned US president.
Brexiteers should pray for a long and freakishly improbable run of clement global economic weather.
Otherwise, the British people may soon find out that, rather than to Mr Johnson’s “sunlit uplands”, they have been led up a treacherous path into a dense, dark and forbidding forest. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – In a functional democracy like the UK, the will of the people in a referendum is supreme, no matter how inconvenient or disruptive the outcome is to the ruling political class.
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In a dysfunctional democracy like Ireland, the will of the people in a referendum is supreme only on the strict condition that the outcome is in line with the wishes of the ruling political class. – Yours, etc,
Sir, – I wonder if it is wise for Leo Varadkar to be telling Boris Johnson how to do his job when it appears he is on the verge of losing his own. It smacks of the tin-eared hubris for which the Taoiseach has become known. – Yours, etc,
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