I don’t think I was hallucinating, but I would like to think that I was, when I read the leading article in THE IRISH TIMES a few weeks ago concerning Turkey – the country whose capital is Ankara, not part of the Christmas menu.
It described Turkey as “our Ally” and I imagine it meant “Ireland’s Ally” but I can’t be sure. Papers of that stripe are wont to describe Britain’s war on the Ottoman Empire a century ago, and others of England’s wars, as “Our War.” I have no quarrel with the Turkish people, nor those of them I’ve met with me. But if the Irish state with its headquarters in Dublin and its hindquarters in Leinster House is allied with Turkey, I’d like to know.
And if it is planning offensive operations against another nation or combination of nations I wish it would tell me so that I can plan my holidays accordingly. Being superannuated I’m no longer very strong in the arm or fleet of foot so could not fill the role of hero or coward with any conviction.
When the Bolsheviks came to power in Russia, they discovered agreements whereby Britain, France and Tsarist Russia intended to divide the territory and the loot of their adversaries after the War. Lenin and Trotsky were not gentlemen. So those bounders and cads revealed the secret schemes of the gentlemen of England and the other well-bred statesmen who had led the world to war. Though John Redmond and John Dillon and Wee Joe Devlin were with the British Government all the way for the war, the secret agreements held no suggestion that Ireland would get any of the loot.
Perhaps Ireland’s headquarters and hindquarters are party to a treaty or treaties about which the plain people no nothing. And perhaps that’s fine and dandy because the plain people are not intended to share any loot.
I know THE IRISH TIMES is ruled by a TRUST whose members are oathbound and have secrets which never appear in its columns. A TRUST set up by a Galloping Major from the British Army who wore a monocle and behaved like a character out of a Tom Sharpe novel.
So perhaps, in a fit of absense of mind the paper accidentally let slip that Ireland is allied with Turkey.
But will it be all over by Christmas?