TORY plans to overhaul the Northern Ireland Protocol that they agreed to previously in order to “get Brexit done” are now inviting legal and economic retaliation against them by exasperated EU representatives. It is typical of the Prime Minister to try and trivialise major breaches of good faith or the breaking of international law, in this case by appearing to suggest that changes to the Protocol are only minor adjustments and perfectly reasonable. Both he and his inept Foreign Secretary are openly risking the stability of Northern Ireland and further economic damage to the UK in yet another vain attempt to solve the Gordian knot of a lamentable Brexit.

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Rather than tackle the anti-democratic practices of the intransigent DUP following the Sinn Fein victory in the Northern Ireland elections, and ignoring the fact that Northern Ireland is the only part of the UK with a growing economy, Johnson and Truss are seeking to unilaterally scrap parts of the Protocol and ditch any pretence at adhering to international law. It is, of course, part of their political make-up to simply shift the political goal posts when under pressure or at the risk of losing support from their right-wing allies.

The Ministerial Code has been ripped up and remade to suit Johnson’s devious transitory agenda. The Sue Gray report, after attempts to bully her into redacting sections, was considerably watered down for public consumption. Like a toddler, the Prime Minister takes no responsibility for his previous actions and hides away from any consequences. Like former President Trump, he is a deeply flawed human being devoid of long-term strategies and apathetic regarding the effects of his decisions on others.

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His ineffectual Foreign Secretary somewhat dubiously claims that passing a law to break a law, in this case the Protocol agreed by the EU and Johnson, does not contravene international law or pose any ethical dilemma whatsoever. Doubtless it will be breaking the law in a “limited and specific way.” The Attorney General, the mediocre Apparatchik that is Suella Braverman, has already been twisting existing facts and historical precedent to support her mendacious leader and supine Foreign Secretary.

This most reckless of Westminster governments now stands accused of destabilising Northern Ireland more acutely than any time since the Good Friday Agreement was signed – an agreement, lest we forget, that was opposed bitterly by the DUP. The people of Northern Ireland voted by 56% to remain in the EU and do not deserve the economic and political uncertainty and genuine anxiety that a precarious Brexit has visited upon them.

Johnson and his amateur minions are leaving a trail of economic, political and social debris in their wake. If the Troubles should return to Northern Ireland it will be their complete responsibility and there will be blood on their hands.

Owen Kelly

AS reported and as expected, the EU reacts to the bill to rewrite the Northern Ireland Protocol. The EU is now expected to launch three separate lawsuits against Britain.

The UK plan is “not a big deal”, says the PM who agreed the Protocol in the first place.

The inverted mind set at No 10 is revealing. With a reputation for no detail, Johnson admitted that he did not think that the EU would actually implement the detail of the Protocol! In other words, he did and does not understand international treaties and how they work. Laws and procedures are meant to be broken at will in his mindset, as witnessed in Partygate; lies are the norm in his public pronouncements and statements when he is in a fix. In his perverted sense of entitlement, nothing of integrity matters.

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His actions over the last two years have a pattern – lie and hope for the best – but it is returning to haunt him, or it should.

The troubled set-up in Westminster is the knee-jerk reaction of his fawning acolytes who pop up to justify his lies and dishonesty. Mediocre underlings like Dorries, to mention one example, said that she would only think the worst of him if he maltreated a dog!

The EU reiterated that Brexit has consequences! For the UK regime, now aiming to tear up an international treaty as if it were a traffic ticket, there will be consequences galore to follow.

The international outrage in 1914 supported by the UK – when Germany ignored the treaty to respect the neutrality of Belgium, dismissing it as a “scrap of paper” – had consequences.

John Edgar

IT’S not surprising that the EU is “poised to act as NI Protocol Bill published” as reported in The National on Tuesday.

Boris Johnson’s “relatively trivial set of adjustments in the grand scheme of things” replaces a recently negotiated international treaty, removes the power of European Court and gives UK Government ministers the power to make new regulations using statutory instruments that bypass normal Westminster parliamentary procedures.

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What is even more concerning is that Boris Johnson regards this as “a bureaucratic change that needs to be made”, as the bill appears to mirror many of the provisions in the European Withdrawal Act that gave sweeping powers to government ministers to change regulations, standards and laws returning to the UK from the EU as and when they see fit.

Boris Johnson’s government has usurped many of the powers originally devolved by parliament to the three other members of the United Kingdom. Perhaps his ignorant, overbearing attitude will meet its match now that he has decided to circumvent international law.

John Jamieson
South Queensferry