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John A.

The Reluctant Taoiseach 1

Costello had long been a critic of the act and decided to clarify matters by stating at a press conference while on a state visit to Canada in September that its repeal, when it happened, would mean Ireland had left the Commonwealth. The location for this announcement was incongruous, but that this statement came from a Fine Gael Taoiseach, whose party was considered pro-Commonwealth, made it even stranger.

An unidentified public meeting during John A.

compromise Taoiseach /

Papers of John Hearne. The uncertainty this prompted was evident.


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Some senior Irish diplomats were quite uneasy with the prospect. Other statutes had died out that way.


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No speeches having been made about them, their fading out of the sphere of practical affairs had passed without comment. This was the issue that Pakistan was apparently concerned about.

Echoes of as Independents rise again - tmobenobrada.ga

It was particularly ironic that such questions were being raised just as the British recognised that a nationalist leader with whom they had long been at loggerheads had devised an instrument that could be used to maintain Commonwealth cohesion as newly independent states emerged in Asia and Africa. The New Zealand historian W. McIntyre , for example, acknowledged the direct impact de Valera had in keeping India in the Commonwealth in This would have been unimaginable in the pre-war years and resulted in a scramble to gain credit for having come up with the final compromise.

It was a fact that had been recognised by the British for some time; its public pronouncement came weeks after Ireland became a republic on 18 April De Valera later told Nicholas Mansergh that the solution found for India in would have suited Ireland and could have paved the way for an Ireland within the Commonwealth. Whether this in turn could have facilitated Irish reunification, however, is another question.

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A telegram from the Irish embassy in Canberra to Dublin, seeking guidance on how best to formally describe the Irish state given the imminent change in its constitutional status, March As former colonies of Britain achieved independence, most chose to retain their previous links with Britain through Commonwealth membership. In there were eight members of the Commonwealth, today there are fifty-three. But both the British and many of those who comprised the post-war Commonwealth concluded that this much-derided Irish construction offered a constitutional formula that could keep newly independent colonies within the Commonwealth, the maintenance and cohesion of which especially in Asia was deemed essential to Britain as the Cold War began.

These concessions only came about as a result of pressure exerted on Britain from other Commonwealth countries with large Irish Diasporas: Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

But there was a sting in the tail: the Ireland Act also, for the first time, established that the status of Northern Ireland as part of the UK would only ever change with the consent of its inhabitants. On the other side of the world, India seemed to implicitly concur with the view of both de Valera who felt Costello had acted in haste and those British officials who had recommended that they examine the External Relations Act that Costello had repealed; when India became a republic in , it remained within the Commonwealth and arguably declined to follow the Irish example.

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Echoes of 1948 as Independents rise again

The declaration of the republic in went hand in hand with a decision to leave the Commonwealth; the ramifications of that decision resonate not just in Ireland, but around the globe to the present day. National Labour which split from Labour in had five TDs. Clann na Talmhan had seven. Newcomers Clann na Poblachta had There were 12 Independent TDs with highly indivualistic personalities and very disparate political views, several of whom had quarrelled with many other political parties. Dillon and Flanagan pulled the Independents into a coherent group with regular meetings.

Dillon took an independent seat at Cabinet as agriculture minister and reported back to his colleagues at all stages.

John A Costello was no lap dog of Catholic hierarchy

The 12 Cabinet seats were shared strictly in accordance with the number of TDs. Electoral law further stipulates that Sundays, public holidays, and Good Friday are not counted as part of that countdown period. Thus, Saturday, April 9, , is the absolute latest date for the next general election to be held. Echoes of as Independents rise again John A Costello emerged as the Taoiseach after the election. Enda Kenny promises to slash taxes for rural publicans and high-speed broadband for pubs Most Read Most Shared. How to talk to your teen about underage drinking Liz Kearney: 'Our fixation with property porn as housing crisis rages shows we have room to improve' Tech review special: The gadgets that live up to their hype