Tuesday, December 13, 2005

When a deadline is not a deadline

Peter Hain needs his head examining. He said yesterday he'd scrap the NI Assembly if a devolution deal isn't worked out by the next general election.

Whoa! I seem to remember it's enshrined in the Good Friday Agreement - who does Peter Hain think he is? Certainly not a competent politician, that's for sure because, as the rest of humanity has already twigged, the DUP are just about the most stubborn people on planet earth, so if this is some sort of imperial bully-boy tactic to get Ian Paisley off the fence and into power with Gerry Adams it's bound to fail in such a way that Hain would have been better off keeping his powder dry and working behind the scenes (asking Jonathan Powell to pull his strings if he's got any sense).

Inept politician or not, the most frightening thing about Hain's statement is that it's clear he's not fit to sit at a negotiating table, and that should worry all Ulster parties to the core. He's shown immense political ill-judgement because - as even the least skilled negotiator knows - when you give a deadline you can be sure the other guy will let it pass before giving you what you want.

Blair, do the Big thing: send Hain back to South Africa and appoint Powell as the last English Secretary of State, with a brief to have Ulster run by Ulsterpeople. (By next Christmas, but don't let on).


At 6:01 p.m., Blogger United Irelander said...

That's a strange one. He's been very pro-SF in my opinion and I wonder if this actually benefits them. Is Joint Authority being considered in yet another effort to drive unionists into accepting devolution?


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