Can Sinn Fein be trusted over its U-turn from socialist republic to EU integration, or is it just tactical exercise?
letter of the day: changing views
Whether or not Michelle O'Neill is simply a conduit for the voice of Gerry Adams, as many believe (given the manner in which she was appointed), is perhaps in the end of no great importance; but the list presented by her on what the people have not forgotten (Comment, June 5) is of importance in showing what she seems to have forgotten, or has been told to forget.
People, however, unlike Michelle O'Neill have not forgotten that Sinn Fein's armed wing bombed and killed not for an "agreed Ireland" (to use her, and also Gerry Adams', terminology), but for something that little more specific: an independent, socialist republican Ireland that rejected not only any kind of union with England, Scotland and Wales, but also rejected being integrated into the European Economic Community (now the European Union).
What on Earth does Sinn Fein now mean by an "agreed" - and only an "agreed" - Ireland? No one knows what that might be. It might even be that Michelle O'Neill does not know. Although it seems, to judge from the content of her article, when she is not padding it with what others have forgotten, that for Sinn Fein it means an Ireland that all might come to agree; yet left at that, it is pretty vacuous.
Hence, it seems that Sinn Fein might be committed (or is it just a tactical exercise?) to an Ireland economically and politically integrated into the European Union. If so, that indeed is a somersault to be welcomed. But can it be trusted?