The Clinton Machine Rolls Over The Opposition At The Democratic National Convention

With Hillary Rodham Clinton anointed as the Democratic Party candidate for president all’s over bar the shouting at the organisation’s 2016 national convention in Philadelphia. Admittedly there seems to have been a fair bit of shouting though it was certainly not as great – or vitriolic – as the American press have made it out to be. Indeed, the disdain of the Democratic… Read More The Clinton Machine Rolls Over The Opposition At The Democratic National Convention

Could Donald Trump Defy The Polls And Do An Electoral Brexit?

Michael Moore, the left-wing American documentary-maker, has been saying it since last year, though it’s only in recent months that people have started to take notice. In his view the new Republican Party candidate, Donald J. Trump, has a strong chance of winning the 2016 presidential election in the United States. The commentators and statisticians predicting a certain and… Read More Could Donald Trump Defy The Polls And Do An Electoral Brexit?

The Norwegian Dialects Versus Anglo-American English

British-based journalist, Jessica Furseth, who was raised in Norway, has written an article on the increasing and disruptive presence of the English language in her Scandinavian homeland: “This is a story about a small language being slowly overwhelmed by English, written in English by someone whose mother tongue is so stiff from lack of use it’s… Read More The Norwegian Dialects Versus Anglo-American English

The Digital Tech Of The Islamic State And Others

Bellingcat has an interesting article by Jett Goldsmith summarising some of the online techniques used by adherents of violent political Islam to communicate with each other and with the wider world. “Propaganda has been a key measure of any jihadist group’s legitimacy since at least 2001, when al-Qaeda operative Adam Yahiye Gadahn established the media house As-Sahab,… Read More The Digital Tech Of The Islamic State And Others

Heil Kaiser Drumpf!

There’s not much one can say about the elevation of Donald J. Trump to the position of sun-king-in-waiting by the Republican Party Convention in Cleveland, Ohio, beyond noting the extraordinarily fawning attitude of the conservative and liberal press towards the dauphins and dauphines of the New York dynasty. So let us, instead, focus on the right-wing media pundit, Laura Ingraham, and her glaring boo-boo at the convention,… Read More Heil Kaiser Drumpf!

The SDLP And Colum Eastwood: Make Me Green, But Not Just Yet

So is it Colum Eastwood, the SDLP leader, or the members of the press who are sending mixed messages on the regional party’s attitude to the post-Brexit calls for a reunification referendum? From a short piece by the Irish Examiner: “Colum Eastwood has said that the reunification of Ireland is “the biggest and best idea around” adding that it would… Read More The SDLP And Colum Eastwood: Make Me Green, But Not Just Yet

Kenny And Martin Wrap The Green Flag Around A Finger Or Two

The post-referendum effects of the Brexit vote in the UK continue to ripple out across the European Union, lapping up on the shores of Ireland with increasing force and urgency. In the space of a few days the leaders of the two largest political parties in the country, Enda Kenny of Fine Gael and Micheál Martin of Fianna Fáil, have… Read More Kenny And Martin Wrap The Green Flag Around A Finger Or Two

British Spies And Irish Oligarchs

While Europe burns, Ireland stinks. At least that is the impression one gets from recent revelations by the more principled members of the mainstream press as they tentatively feel their way through the litigious minefield sowed by those at the pinnacle of the country’s business classes. We may not be a Russia, a nation largely lacking in democratic and judicial accountability, but there… Read More British Spies And Irish Oligarchs

Erdoğan To Emerge From Turkey’s Failed Military Coup Stronger Than Ever

The apocryphal Chinese curse, “May you live in interesting times“, springs to mind when reviewing the turbulent events of the last week. From the improvised violence of a lone terrorist inspired by an aberrant form of radical Islam to the planned overthrow of an authoritarian, Islamist-leaning government by supposedly secularist militarists, Europe – in its broadest sense –… Read More Erdoğan To Emerge From Turkey’s Failed Military Coup Stronger Than Ever

New Information Video By The Irish National Caucus Sparks Unionist Anger

I’m somewhat lukewarm on the Irish National Caucus (INC), the Irish-American human rights organisation which has campaigned on equality and justice issues for Irish citizens in the UK-administered north-east of Ireland since the early 1970s. Admittedly it has done stirling work on those contentious matters, despite decades of opposition lobbying by British diplomats in the United States and the hostility of officials in the traditionally anglophile… Read More New Information Video By The Irish National Caucus Sparks Unionist Anger

The Eleventh Night, The Twelfth Of July And Britain’s Colony In The European Union

As is now the norm, on the night of July 11th a significant part of the unionist – or pro-British – minority in Ireland marked the evening before their annual July 12th demonstrations with the lighting of huge bonfires across the north-east of the country. According to press reports, and in line with previous years, some of the pyres were dotted with the election posters of Irish… Read More The Eleventh Night, The Twelfth Of July And Britain’s Colony In The European Union

But What’s Your Name In English?

Thomas Sutherland writing on the South African digital current affairs platform, News24: “Last night, a friend and I walked into a bar in Port Elizabeth. We entered into a delightful dialogue with two gentlemen about the harsh realities of life and cultural experience in South Africa. These gentlemen happened to be isiXhosa speaking, black South Africans. At some point… Read More But What’s Your Name In English?

DUP Favours British Beer-Swilling Thugs Before Irish Special Needs Children

In April of this year, Arlene Foster, the belligerent leader of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP), the majority pro-UK partner in the regional power-sharing administration at Stormont, vowed to destroy a decade of progress on educational equality for Irish-speaking parents and children in the north-east of Ireland by slashing funding for Irish-medium schools. Following the assembly elections in May the majority… Read More DUP Favours British Beer-Swilling Thugs Before Irish Special Needs Children

Ireland, The Long War And The Iraq Inquiry By Sir John Chilcot

If the long-delayed findings of Britain’s Iraq Inquiry, led from 2009 to 2011 by senior civil servant Sir John Chilcot, have driven a stake through the political legacy of former United Kingdom prime minister, Tony Blair, it is pretty clear that they have done much the same thing for the reputation of the British Armed Forces. The generals and Ministry of Defence officials who testified before the… Read More Ireland, The Long War And The Iraq Inquiry By Sir John Chilcot

Brexit, The Disconnect Between London And Greater England

In the lead up to June’s Brexit referendum, the plebiscite on Britain’s membership of the European Union, there were several things which made me question just how great the expected “Remain” victory would be. While I was presuming that the pro-EU side would win I’d already guessed that the vote would be closer than predicted, not least because of the fluctuating polls in the weeks before the… Read More Brexit, The Disconnect Between London And Greater England

Michael Gove And Brexit’s True Origins, From Anti-Peace To Anti-European?

In the year 2000, in response to the all-party inter-governmental Belfast Agreement of 1998, a peace deal which effectively ended the decades-old conflict in the north-east of Ireland, the Conservative MP Michael Gove wrote a bitter condemnation of the treaty. In essence he believed that the peace process of the 1990s represented a political and military defeat for the United Kingdom and a… Read More Michael Gove And Brexit’s True Origins, From Anti-Peace To Anti-European?

Beyond The Pale. Irish-Speakers In Modern Ireland

How colonised are the Irish? Very colonised? Super colonised? Utterly-and-completely-fucked-up-beyond-all-hope-of-recovery colonised? One might be inclined to chose the latter given the number of English-speakers in Ireland who regard Irish-speakers with disdain. Some anglophone lobbyists seem to argue that those who adhere to the indigenous language of this island nation, rather than the language imposed upon it by foreign… Read More Beyond The Pale. Irish-Speakers In Modern Ireland