Two letters on the ‘Windsor Framework’

I am reproducing two letters which appear in the columns of the ‘Belfast Newsletter’ today.

I would suggest they highlight the utter chicanery of the British Prime Minister and those involved in the portrayal of the so-called ‘Windsor Framework’ as a resolving of the constitutional treachery of the ‘Protocol’. That deceitful arrangement with the EC effectively detached us constitutionally and commercially from the rest of the United Kingdom and lumped us in under EEC regulations with the Irish Republic. The ‘Windsor Framework’ in no way alters that, despite the vociferous assertions of Rishi Sunak, the British Prime Minister.

Furthermore, the ‘political maneuvering’ by the DUP leader, Sir Jeffrey Donaldson, and his like-minded cronies within the party, is but another example of the deceitful mind-set of that party. From a party that once had as its slogan, ‘The Truth Will Set You Free’, they have become a bunch of double-dealers who speak nothing but treachery out of both sides of their mouth.

The BBC News NI political editor, Enda McClafferty, in an article entitled: Brexit: Peter Robinson returns as DUP faces crossroads draws a parallel between the present political dilemma for the DUP and ‘the moment when the party signed the St Andrews Agreement to join Sinn Féin and other parties in a power-sharing executive.’

That was the moment that set the DUP on the final leg of its journey of self-destruction and the betrayal of its pro-union supporters.

I believe that it is about to take the final step, under Donaldson’s leadership, on that path of the sell-out of the Unionists and Protestants in Ulster.

Please also see this article just published:

Protocol / Windsor Framework latest: Citizens in Great Britain would not accept what is being demanded of Northern Ireland says Lord Frost

Sincerely in Christ’s name,

Ivan Foster

Jim Allister: Ruth Dudley Edwards has ignored two points of vital importance in her column in support of the Windsor Framework

A letter from Jim Allister KC:

Northern Ireland will still be under the EU customs code, within the EU single market, subject to all attendant EU laws and ECJ adjudications. To accept the deal is to accept that never again will Northern Ireland be a full part of the United Kingdom

Ruth Dudley Edward’s recitals of support for the Windsor Framework in Tuesday’s News Letter(‘Northern Ireland has lots of talent and this deal could unlock it,’ March 7, see link below) ignore two matters of immense legal, political and constitutional significance.

1. The Windsor deal makes no alteration of substance to the protocol, nor could it, because of the legal framework within which it arises, namely, Art 164 of the Withdrawal Agreement. Art 164 is emphatic: there can and will be no changes to the “essential elements” of the Protocol. Tinkering only is what is permitted and tinkering only is what we got – still under a foreign customs code, within a foreign single market, subject to all attendant foreign laws and ECJ adjudications.

2. To accept the deal is to accept that never again will Northern Ireland be a full part of the United Kingdom because we would be set irreversibly in the same and increasingly diverging economic orbit and control as the Republic. United Ireland, not United Kingdom would be the trajectory.

Advocacy of being in the EU single market for goods relies on subjugating sovereignty for claimed economic benefit (which tellingly Rishi Sunak rejects for GB), but with no thought to the inevitable detachment of NI as GB diverges. For those who cherish the Union being in the EU single market is not a matter of economic advantage but of constitutional detriment.

Jim Allister KC, TUV leader.

Letter: The exclusion of the likes of Ian Paisley and Sammy Wilson from DUP protocol deal panel speaks volumes

A letter from Harry Patterson:

Surely a politician of Sir Jeffrey Donaldson’s vast experience does not need a panel of eight to tell him if the Windsor framework is a good deal.

I could perhaps see the logic in this panel if the DUP had not already set seven criteria for any new deal to be judged against but they did! Seven tests which to my layman’s eye are nowhere near being met. Sharper minds than mine like Jim Allister and Jamie Bryson can see the Windsor framework for what it is – smoke and mirrors and absolutely no substance, a confidence trick.

The make up of this new panel does not inspire much confidence that it’s a broad spectrum of the DUP. Perhaps the biggest surprise is Arlene Foster’s (no longer a party member) inclusion – Arlene who told us that the protocol was ‘a window of opportunity’ so how is she likely to view this supposed improvement deal! The exclusion of the likes of Ian Paisley and Sammy Wilson speaks volumes.

Unless I have read this totally wrong and Sir Jeffrey has already seen through the Windsor Framework and expects this new panel to agree with him this giving him credibility when he tells the PM no deal. The alternative is he is minded to go for this new deal and wants this panel to provide cover. If it’s the latter then it’s a monumental mistake and will split the party and lead to its demise.

Harry Patterson, Castlecaulfield