Features

The forgiveness we received in 1953

bears no comparison to the situation Greece

has put itself in today. Whatever

criticisms might be levelled

at the German governments

of the first half of the last century,

they didn’t waste good money

on crazy schemes to allow

the school caretaker retire at fifty five,

but invested wisely

in long term infrastructure

and engineering projects:

tanks to pacify Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia;

enough gas canisters to almost

carry out their apparently impossible

election promises; V-2 rockets

with ‘England’ written on them.

 

My predecessor, whatever else

may be said of him, didn’t

squander our nation’s treasure giving

free kebabs and ouzo to officials

of the Ministry of Transport as they woke

from their compulsory afternoon nap,

but shopped around frugally

for enough excellent leather boots

to properly police the streets

of Prague, Cracow, Bucharest, Minsk,

Liege, Amsterdam, Lyon;

after much haggling and complaint

purchased, at ridiculously miniscule prices,

the millions of Stahlhelm helmets

spent in our valiant attempt

to annex the Soviet oilfields in the Caucasus.

Though it didn’t come to exact fruition,

we died trying, and took enough of them with us

to make it almost worth it.

 

Go cause a nice world war,

my little olive eating friend,

and in its aftermath, we’ll talk.

Play your cards with sufficient insanity,

all across the map, while wearing outfits

of the required eccentricity

and you’ll find our terms

extraordinarily generous.

KEVIN HIGGINS

*term of endearment used to refer to Angela Merkel by her supporters. Means “Mum”.

Dáil Debates, Foreign Affairs

Dáil Debates, Foreign Affairs

Children and Youth Affairs

Press Release:

The Coalition of Mother And Baby home Survivors (CMABS) welcomes the package of support measures announced today by Minister Zappone. However, CMABS notes that this package is almost identical to the proposals put forward to Minister James Reilly in the aftermath of the Tuam 800 story breaking almost 5 years ago. CMABS proposals were in turn based on the package given to Magdalene survivors in 2013. Thousands of survivors have passed away in the last five years since Taoiseach Enda Kenny announced there would be urgent action for survivors. CMABS also notes that Minister Zappone is still restricting the package to survivors born in, and/or resident in, Mother and Baby homes but, those who were illegally adopted or victims of forced adoption outside of the M&B home, are still excluded. This cynical restriction is cutting an elderly and dying community in half and many survivors will despair at being left behind by Minister Zappone. The Minister is inflicting ‘survivor guilt’ on an elderly community to her eternal shame.
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