Dáil Éireann - Volume 13 - 10 December, 1925

PRIVATE BUSINESS. - TREATY (CONFIRMATION OF AMENDING AGREEMENT) BILL, 1925—SECOND STAGE (Resumed).

[1653] Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: It is a matter of some regret, I think, and reproach to the Minister for Lands and Agriculture, that I am more or less a conservative in politics. Many times in the House the Minister has drawn particular attention to the fact. Perhaps that very instinct of conservatism has, within the last few days, moved me to go into certain quarters and to fish in what one may call strange waters, in an effort to see if a solution of this problem could be found.

Major COOPER: Did you catch a cod?

Mr. T. O'CONNELL: There are no cods in these waters.

Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: I was the more moved to do so, by a remark which fell from the Minister for Justice during the debate on Monday night. The Minister stated that persons outside this House, if they could get a majority of the elected representatives of the people, were free to alter and amend the Constitution. I cannot accept that view. In my opinion the Constitution can only be altered or amended from within. If there is an attempt made from without, the action ceases to be constitutional and becomes revolutionary. As a conservative, I am very much concerned with anything that can avoid such a serious if not a desperate state of affairs.

I believe that with the system we have adopted in our Constitution— proportional representation—you never can get in this country a hundred per cent. majority of elected representatives to do away with the Constitution. There would be always a minority prepared to accept its provisions, to come into the House and work it. That, I contend, must create a very serious state of affairs. If, for instance, you had a majority of the elected representatives outside and a minority functioning within, what would be the position? Under the Constitution the minority, having complied with its provisions, automatically becomes the Government, and all the powers and resources of Government automatically [1654] fall into their hands. They get control of the Exchequer, the army, the police. They are in authority, and any persons who acted collectively, even though admittedly they would be representatives of the people, would still be subject to the penal provisions which the Constitution and amending Acts provide for dealing with disturbances of the public peace.

I am sorry that the Government in London, when making this effort that they call an effort for peace, did not make a serious endeavour to get Article 17 of the Constitution amended. I believe there is a potentially dangerous factor to be faced, while men are prepared to stay outside the Constitution and refuse to come in here. I feel bound as a Conservative to do everything possible in reason to smooth the way for men to come in here and take their place in the Government of the country. Let them show if they have a policy. If they have constructive ideas, let them satisfy the people by constitutional action.

In my opinion it is up to the Dáil at a reasonable opportunity to take the initiative. I suggest that they delete the last paragraph of Article XVII., and amend the Standing Orders accordingly. I believe that a way will be found that will not run counter to the Constitution, or rather to the Treaty on which it is based, and which will permit those Deputies who are outside to come in and take their seats. The present unfortunate position is, in my opinion, the result of a decade of political folly. You cannot throw the blame on any particular individual.

Mr. O'HIGGINS: Why not?

Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: Because the issue is too big; the body politic is culpable. The country by a certain act has paved the way for its own defeat. It was stated here that partition was the result of the action of the late Irish Party. The Government, in a handbook issued on the North-Eastern question, stated that the negotiations at Buckingham Palace had broken down because the leaders of the Irish Party could not accept the proposal, either in principle or detail. Is it Deputy Murphy's contention that when men meet to discuss certain tentative [1655] proposals they are definitely committed to them, and that when they refuse to accept them in detail they have done wrong? What, then, are we to say when even the principle is reflected? It was further stated that this question of partition arose in 1916. I believe that both Irish sides were put in the wrong in that case. I believe that different proposals were put forward to both sides by Mr. Lloyd George. I believe that he stated to the Irish Party that the proposals were temporary, and that to Sir Edward Carson he wrote to the effect that the proposals would be permanent.

It is true that a convention was summoned in Belfast which, after some difficulty, accepted the proposals by a majority, that is the proposals as put forward to Mr. Redmond by the British spokesman. One factor has been ignored, and that is the condition of Ireland at that time. People seem to forget that the country was under martial law in 1916. People may think that martial law is a normal state of affairs—quite a happy event in political life—but I do not think that that view is justified. I have a very vivid recollection of a certain personage who, as well as happening to be a fellow-countyman is also a fellow-parishioner of mine—I refer to Archbishop Clune, of Perth—who was employed by the dominant party in Ireland at that time to negotiate with Mr. Lloyd George on this question. There was a statement published at the time, and it was never contradicted, that they asked him to use his good graces with the British Government not to have martial law imposed in Ireland. That would have been about December, 1920.

We are now asked to discuss this Treaty, the Preamble of which refers to a feeling of amity with the Government of Northern Ireland. It is rather late in the day to have this declaration of amity, considering the sterile years that have intervened, and that even in 1917 the people in the North were offered a 40 per cent. representation in an All-Ireland Parliament, but these proposals were contemptuously turned down. At this stage we are asked to sanction this Agreement [1656] as if it was a friendly act. What is the Agreement giving to this country? I am going to deal with the subsequent position. I understand the alternative and I will deal with it later. What are we getting since this shout of victory has been raised? There is to be no change whatever in the Boundary, and that in a military sense means “as you were.” That is the direct result of Article I.

We are told with a great shout of triumph that Article V. of the Treaty is to be abolished. What does Article V. provide? It says: “The Irish Free State shall assume liability for the service of the Public Debt of the United Kingdom as existing at the date hereof, and towards the payment of war pensions as existing at that date in such proportion as may be fair and equitable, having regard to any just claims on the part of Ireland by way of set off or counter-claim, the amount of such sums being determined in default of agreement by the arbitration of one or more independent persons being citizens of the British Empire.” It seems to me that this term “public debt” must be used in its generic sense. It seems something more than liability for the war debt of the United Kingdom. It means all the liabilities accrued by the Government of the United Kingdom in any shape or form. At the time when that Article was drafted there was an Act on the Statute Book known as the Government of Ireland Act, 1920. That Act was quite definite and quite specific as to certain financial provisions and certain financial relations between the two countries. Amongst other things, it provided in section 26 that land purchase annuities in respect of Southern and Northern Ireland, including any arrears due on the appointed day, shall be collected by the Governments of Southern and Northern Ireland and paid into their respective exchequers, and be part of the revenue of those Governments respectively. Sub-section (3) of that section provides that the capital sums accruing from annuities which were redeemed either in Southern or Northern Ireland were to be taken possession of by the British Government, and there would [1657] still be a sum paid either to the Northern Government or the Southern Government for the unexpired term of years of the terminable annuity equal to the annuities on land that had been redeemed.

So far, from the Government supporters, we have heard nothing as to what happened as regard these land purchase annuities under this agreement. The Minister for Agriculture some months ago on the debate on the Land Bond Bill asked how, if we were at present indebted to the tune of £130,000,000, it would make any difference, and he said that he knew that there was to be a financial settlement later, and that a settlement that could apply to £130,000,000 could also apply to £160,000,000. Let us understand what this £130,000,000 really means. It could mean two things. It could mean, as any person who has any knowledge of land purchase must know, either the part of the price for which the lands were chargeable, or, in addition, it could include the sums advanced by way of bonus to landlords. I cannot realise how this £130,000,000 has been made out. We could estimate what was originally advanced for land purchase purposes. I believe that for all Ireland it would be something in the neighbourhood of £130,000,000, that is money chargeable on the lands and bound eventually to be repaid, but that does not take cognisance of the sum which the British added and which was charged to the United Kingdom Exchequer, the extra stock issued in respect of bonus.

I hope I am wrong in thinking that the Free State is really responsible for the interest on the money advanced and chargeable on all the lands of Ireland. That would seem to me to be an extraordinary thing. In other words, the Free State would be accountable for lands purchased under the Acts of 1903 and 1909, which are excluded from our jurisdiction. This £130,000,000 might also mean that the whole charge on land purchase is to fall on Saorstát Eireann. It is well to realise that as stocks were placed on the market, they depreciated and more stocks had to be issued to meet the advances for landlords who required cash. A landlord might have agreed to sell to a tenant [1658] occupier for £1,000. He might get a bonus on that and the total price would be, say, £1,200, but if he would only accept cash, what happened? There was first, £1,000 stock created in respect of which the tenant became liable for its redemption or extinction. Suppose the stock depreciated by 20 per cent., that meant that you had to add one-fifth of £1,000, which is £200, and that would make up a sum of £1,200.

Mr. EGAN: Tell us something about the Agreement.

Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: Are you denying that this question is extraneous to the Agreement?

Mr. EGAN: It is remote.

Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: It is not a bit remote from the question of Irish indebtedness to Great Britain. Article V. is repealed according to the more recent instrument. Will Deputy Egan deny that liability in respect of Land Purchase is excluded? I will give you the Minister's words for it: “I know there is to be a financial settlement later on.” The Deputy, however, is not going to side-track me. I said the charge to the tenant is something like £1,200. In addition the £200 that the State advanced in the first instance has to be increased by another twenty per cent., that is, £40, so the whole sum amounts to about £1,440.

I am unaware who is bearing the amount of the difference, but I find in the accounts of the Land Commission for this year the provision towards the charge in respect of excess stock was £183,500, and in the previous year a sum of only £160,000 was granted. The Dáil will need some precise information as to what the whole financial question under the Land Commission is, and what are our relations to Great Britain. The House and the country are, no doubt, aware that at present the Land Purchase annuities are merely collected in this country and are remitted direct to London. The British Treasury holds the statement of accounts, makes all the disbursements and deals with the investments in whatever manner it pleases, subject to some old Acts of Parliament. What is the position of the Saorstát with regard to that? Is it satisfactory? To what extent is the Ministry responsible for that?

[1659] There is the further question of local loans. I have here some information I can impart to the House. It is contained in a report of what transpired last year before a meeting of the Public Accounts Committee, of which I am a member. These local sums, it will be understood, were sums advanced from a fund which was created, in the first instance, by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, and for which, of course, the incidence of charge applied both to Great Britain and Ireland. It is quite possible that persons in England could get loans on the same terms as in Ireland. The following is an extract from the Minutes of Evidence before the Committee of Public Accounts, May 24th, 1924: Question 251:

“Deputy Hewat: What exact purpose is this for?

“Mr. Brennan: There are very numerous purposes for which loans that have been called Local Loans can be issued. In the past, when legislation has been passed, enabling a local authority, for example, to borrow from the State for housing, or where a railway is going to be built and the State is going to lend money, or drainage is going to be carried out and the State is to lend the money—for numerous purposes of that description, money has been advanced by the State from a fund known as the Local Loans Fund. There are at least forty or fifty different statutes which enable money to be advanced in that manner, and the loans for which provision was intended to be made by Sub-head A. here were loans under one or other of those Acts.”

Again, in question 266:

“Deputy Hewat: Regarding these loans for various purposes, out of the local funds, to what extent had you to write off that debt?

“Mr. Brennan: About £67,000,000 were advanced for local loans in Ireland, and of that £11,000,000 had to be written off as bad debts.”

I think I should also give question 261:

“Chairman (Mr. Johnson): In the Estimate for the current year, sub-head A., Local Loans Fund is designated Grant in Aid. Does that distinguish it in any way from the [1660] 1922 Account?—Yes. That provision is merely for the purpose of supplying capital for the Local Loans Fund. You see, the issues are not made directly out of the Vote. The Vote provides the capital sum for the fund, and then the issues for the borrowers are made out of the fund, and it ought not to be necessary, year after year, to keep pouring capital in. As instalments get paid, the Fund will gradually come to live on itself.”

The following is a statement of the Local Loans dealt with in the Dáil early this year. Under Sub-head B there is a return of the sums due for repayment to the British Government in respect of loans from the British Local Loans Fund outstanding from the Office of Public Works on the 1st April, 1922, £580,000 for 1925-26. The sum for last year was £670,000. Under Sub-head C you have repayment to British Government in respect of loans from the British Local Loans Fund under Land Law Acts 1881-1888 outstanding from the Irish Land Commission on the 1st April, 1923; for the year 1925-26 £207,300, and for the year 1924-25 £208,927. The total comparative figures for the two years are £837,300 for 1925-26 and £985,927 for 1924-25. We know the actual rate of interest at which this money is lent. It is somewhere in the neighbourhood of 6½ per cent. Although Mr. Brennan stated the amount advanced to Ireland, it does not necessarily mean the amount outstanding; it can include sums issued which were subsequently paid off. I would estimate that there is outstanding something in the neighbourhood of £15,000,000. This money came from the British Treasury and was voted by the Parliament of the United Kingdom, of which we were members then, and to which we had to bear, subject to our capacity to pay, our equitable share of taxation. If we had to pay our equitable share of taxation, is there any strong reason why we should not have an equitable claim on the assets? Has that been secured to us by the abolition of Article V.? You are continuing to pay your Land Purchase annuities and to pay off your local loans. You are paying them over [1661] to Great Britain, but the tangible asset you had there seems to have gone by the board. All you have got is that in respect of War Debt and of pensions Article V. is wiped out. Mr. Churchill laid it down definitely a couple of days ago in the House of Commons that the sum due by a country is necessarily conditioned by its capacity to pay. It is the same point put by economists in this House with regard to local taxation and the ability of the rate-paying community to pay.

I cannot see that any great advantage has been secured by the abolition of Article V. It is well known that we cannot afford to increase our taxation to any appreciable degree. On this question of war pensions, Deputy Shaw said that we were receiving something like £3,000,000 a year. Is not that a mere accident? I put it to the Deputy that that was conditioned by the numbers of casualties or of disabled persons domiciled in Ireland, and that the more persons who would have been wounded or severely injured the higher, necessarily, would the payments be in respect of that charge. Does Deputy Shaw think it a fair and reasonable proposition to put it up that the more we had of wounded in the Great War, the greater our charge would be, because if he bases it on the question that two or three millions are paid annually in respect of this, it is a necessary implication. For instance, if a sum of £5,000,000 were paid, it would mean we had twice the number, and so on, of disabled persons. That would really mean that the less you would be able to pay in respect of pensions. The higher the pensions are the poorer is your capacity to pay. Similarly in respect of the debt. The Minister for Finance laid it down yesterday——

Mr. WHITE: This is outside the Feetham line.

Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: No. The Deputy is very glad to be outside the Feetham line, I think. I have a recollection that the Minister for Finance said that the British claim totals something like £155,000,000. We have equitable charges we could bring against that under Article V.—the over-taxation of Ireland for quite a number of [1662] years. It is difficult to say to what extent that would be admitted by a Board of Arbitration, but, as a matter of fact, it is only as an ultimate resort that arbitration had to take place. In the first instance, negotiations on the question of indebtedness were to be between the two Governments. The Minister for Justice told us the other night that he had no head for figures. I saw next day in the papers a statement to the effect that the Minister had achieved unique distinction and had enhanced his reputation. In a whimsical sense I am inclined to agree.

I was looking round to see where I could get a parallel to the Minister, and I found one. I wanted to see where I could find another candid autobiographer. Not alone did I get one, but I found a pair. I got St. Augustine——

A DEPUTY: Where is he?

Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: In Heaven —and I got Rousseau. The Minister was very candid; so were these two gentlemen—saint and sinner—I have mentioned. They gave their shortcomings to the public. So did the Minister. I wonder whether the Irish people can sit down and remain quiet under the statement that the Minister for Justice embarked to negotiate delicate financial questions while he confessedly had not a head for figures. Yet we are told to laud this thing as a victory, because Article V. of the Treaty is not brought into operation. I contend, first and last, that we have a claim on the assets of the British Empire, and that we have, even under our present Constitution, certain sets-off, such, for instance, as the maintenance of an army. I hold it is essential for us to maintain an army to preserve the Saorstát, that that army is part and parcel of the Imperial defences, and perhaps even part of the joint defences of the two islands, and as such we would have a legitimate counter-claim in that respect. The Army is costing us over £3,000,000 a year. In addition, one wonders what is to become of all the surplus material disposed of at the end of the Great War. If we had to accept part of the liability for the war surely we have a claim on the surplus realised by the [1663] Disposals Board. In addition there are the indemnities coming from Berlin. I cannot state at the moment what sums are payable to England under the Dawes scheme of reparations, but surely if that were analysed we could present a pretty considerable Bill in that respect. I contend that we have no means of knowing, because the question has not been scientificially and thoroughly explored, whether Ireland has gained or has lost through the abolition of Article V. It is quite possible that we would have a very substantial credit at our disposal. But in addition we are told in clause 3:—

The Irish Free State hereby assumes all liability undertaken by the British Government in respect of malicious damage done since the Twenty-first day of January, Nineteen hundred and nineteen, to property.

The Minister for Justice complained here that certain mythical ex-British colonels were going down the country and raising hell against the best of Governments and the best of Ministers as to the manner in which they handled the public finances, and as to extravagance generally. The Minister, who has no head for figures, can scarcely complain. But what are these ex-British colonels to think of this? What a handle, if they are malicious or weak enough——

The PRESIDENT: I may tell the Deputy that one of them has written congratulating me on this great result.

Mr. WILSON: There are five more.

Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: I repudiated the claims of these ex-British colonels two or three weeks ago, and whether one of them writes to the President or not it will not lessen the force of my argument, or the force of my hostility to this proposal. We put up in the House a claim for distressed residents in the Saorstát and nobody here could controvert our statements as to their pitiful condition. I refer to the people who lost live stock during the fluke epidemic last winter. The Ministerial declaration amounted to this, that there was not a penny for them, that there [1664] was not a penny to assist Irish farmers in this matter, that we had even reduced the old age pensions in an endeavour to balance the Budget. But in this victory we have won we are compelled to pay a sum of £250,000 for sixty years. I have not had time to calculate what is the capital value of an annual payment of £250,000 for sixty years. Deputy Baxter said it was £15,000,000. I submit that that is altogether inaccurate, that it is considerably in excess of £15,000,000, and I will tell you why. If you have a sum of a quarter of a million lent out at, say, five per cent. compound interest for fifty-nine years, what would it amount to? And when there are fifty-eight similar sums for decreasing periods, I wonder what the capital value to the community is. It is said, of course, that you have an alternative. Of the two I prefer to take the alternative of paying this £6,000,000 now rather than continue this arrangement for sixty years. If we raised a loan internally I believe we would be the gainers by it.

Mr. WHITE: Deputy Davin, apparently, is not accepting the Deputy's figures.

Mr. DAVIN: I have not said a word yet.

Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: I wonder how the ordinary country people, people who are hard pressed, whose portion is basic poverty, are prepared to meet this new charge. Turning to the fourth Article of the Agreement, there are two things that stand out prominently. One has the effect of convicting the Oireachtas of having passed inequitable legislation, and, even more serious, it interferes very successfully with your internal policy. It has been put up here that the Southern Unionists, and other people who have had their property destroyed, have already got adequate treatment. My contention does not lie in that way. I contend that no money that a man gets really compensates him for the destruction of his property. It is very questionable, if anything like judicial procedure has been applied, that a man could be overcompensated, or even equitably compensated, for the destruction of his home. There is one point in connection [1665] with Article III. which I would put against it to its detriment. Those of us who accepted constitutionalism all the years——

MINISTER for AGRICULTURE: Under protest.

Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: No, not under protest. The majority had their way, even when we considered they went wrong. We did not criticise them, but let the people find them out. But in one sense, I submit to the Government as a defence, that men, without a mandate from the country, took up this game of war, and while the people remained quiet and passive under it, while the formula seemed to be that “To the pure all things are pure,” the corollary here would appear to be “To the patriot all things are permissible.” When one comes to realise it, one does not find such great fault with it. It will be an eye-opener to the people and will make them recognise that they cannot abrogate and cannot violate great principles, and agree to the right of the minority at any stage or at any period to run amok. These people never had authority for the creation of war between England and Ireland, for I say that neither in 1916 nor in 1919 was the claim seriously put forward that the Irish people sanctioned the proposal for war. They did not. Of 1916 there can be no doubt whatever, and even though in 1918 the Sinn Fein political organisation secured the overwhelming majority of the seats at the General Election, I have yet to learn that the first Dáil sanctioned this war with England, or that it had obtained the approval or authority of the people. If one reads Deputy Dan Breen's book one learns that the Dáil at that period strongly resisted those who made this proposal.

General MULCAHY: Would the Deputy read the reports of the Dáil proceedings of 1919-1920?

Mr. P. EGAN: I suggest that the Deputy should keep to the Agreement.

Mr. A. BYRNE: I suggest that nobody interrupts him.

Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: I suggest, with all respect, that I am well within [1666] the terms of the Agreement. Article III. says:—

The Irish Free State hereby assumes all liability undertaken by the British Government in respect of malicious damage done since the Twenty-first day of January, Nineteen hundred and nineteen, to property in the area now under the jurisdiction of the Parliament and Government of the Irish Free State.

If other Deputies are so obtuse that they cannot see the connection, I am not responsible for their denseness. But two wrongs do not make a right, and while one must condemn that course of action, and I certainly stand against it, first and last, still one cannot sanction the position the British Government took up when they let loose the Black and Tans. I object, and object very much, to having to pay this money. Why should the peaceful people of this country be made the victims of these contending parties, the one without authority to make war, the other, the British Government, who violated every canon of decency and every canon of humanity in that war? It was to the peaceful people of Ireland that this destruction was caused. What was the procedure in these cases? Certain wicked men, to use no stronger term, deliberately making mischief, out for blood, moved into certain areas where the people were anxious to proceed with their daily task of earning their bread. These men committed outrages there that immediately brought down the vengeance of the British Government on these districts. Is it a fair proposition to-day to put up to these people that while certain men did wrong at their sweet will and others, competing, as has been stated, in wrong-doing and in the work of arson and destruction, they must now be taxed to pay for the rebuilding of the houses, the replacement of farm implements or whatever else was destroyed, and the re-stocking of the shops? I say no; it is manifestly unjust.

I have not been very friendly to these proposals. Yet the Government is on strong grounds when it asks for an alternative. What is the alternative? Candidly, and I stand up to it, [1667] I have none to offer. It is true the Government plumbed the depths of “bosthoondom” on all this, but where is the alternative to offer to them? I cannot find it. We are threatened I believe—I doubt if the British Government put it up; it is remotely possible they might—in any case the story has got out about war.

Mr. DAVIN: Do you believe it?

Mr. C. HOGAN: I do not know if the British Government put it up.

The PRESIDENT: They did not.

Mr. HOGAN: I am glad to hear it. Then it came from the President's Party?

Mr. DAVIN: From Deputy Professor O'Sullivan.

The PRESIDENT: I explained that the new line, from information in my possession, was bound to produce discontent, and almost certainly bloodshed. There is no declaration of war.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: I do not know whether the Deputy realises what the word “bosthoondom” means. I never heard it before, but lest it might be taken in future as a precedent, bosthoon, which is a word I know— although I do not know “bosthoondom”—is not Parliamentary language.

Mr. HOGAN: I suppose in the physical sense it is impossible to withdraw the spoken word, but I will retract its offensiveness. I was protesting against this talk of bloodshed and strife. I am glad I have the declaration of the President that at least it has not come from the British. Still the word has gone out now. What I put to Deputies who with me detest these proposals, who feel that the country has been badly let down, that the Executive Council has blundered badly, and who believe that the Executive Council must be held accountable and strictly responsible for the invidious position, the shameful position, we have been put into, is, what is the alternative? I went to the Shelbourne Hotel to see what was this alternative. I say I have not found it. I have committed myself to nothing by going to the Shelbourne. I made it very clear there. [1668] If bloodshed ensued, I am afraid a very dangerous situation would be brought about in the country. As I say, I stand first and foremost for peace. This bloodshed would expose us perhaps to a conflict. I fear it would. The bad passions of the past 10 years have not died out; they have merely subsided; they are still simmering! and I for one cannot take the responsibility of a course of action which would precipitate the state of affairs which we are threatened with.

MINISTER for AGRICULTURE (Mr. P. Hogan): Protesting acquiescence.

Mr. C. HOGAN: If I have to eat dirt I am prepared to eat it. That is what we are doing. There is no use in disguising it. This is a measure of defeat and the country must submit and pay the penalty of defeat.

Mr. DAVIN: We are committed to it.

Mr. C. HOGAN: Yes, unfortunately we are committed to this measure of defeat. You can try the heroic remedy which has been suggested. Where will it land you? Are the resources of the country such as to sustain a conflict? The terms are very unequal. I suggest to Deputies who oppose this Agreement that we have made the force of our protest; that we cannot augment its force, that we cannot ignore the consequences of the defeat of this measure—that is the immediate publication of the Feetham award— and that the passage of this Bill ought not to be resisted.

Mr. MORRISSEY: Are we to infer from what the Deputy has said that he is prepared to vote for this Agreement which he has described as vile, shameful, dirty and so on?

Mr. C. HOGAN: I am prepared at all times to stand up to my responsibilities. I am not running away from them when I am in a tight corner, and I know it, too. I am perfectly candid. Every Deputy is in a tight corner over this. The country is in a particularly tight corner. The people are broken down by years of strife, years of misfortune, years of economic depression, and I cannot take the responsibility of [1669] opposing this measure. I would be glad if it were possible to absent myself from the division, but then, again, there is a shirking of responsibility. I will be accused, I know, of inconsistency, but there is no inconsistency in standing up for what one conceives to be the best interests of his constituents and the country in general. I loathe those things, but I am powerless to resist them. You can make the force of your protest, but I am not prepared to accept the consequences of voting against this.

It has often happened, perhaps, in public life in Ireland for face-saving purposes, for one to vote against proposals that one may be in sympathy with. I do not propose to descend to such tactics. I hold that both from the internal and external point of view, the heroic measure proposed is absolutely useless. We cannot have conflict in the North. Any bloodshed there will involve the country. Of that there can be no question whatsoever. In addition, there would be frightful reactions. As I say, we are not able to sustain a conflict for any appreciable length of time. Even in the interval, I am not prepared to expose the country to a welter of bloodshed, to administrative chaos and economic collapse. I am prepared to stand up to my responsibilities in this matter. While detesting this, while severely censuring the Government for what I consider their ineptitude and their folly, I feel that I cannot remain out of the division Lobby, and I work down to the only alternative left to me, to go in and in shame to vote for it.

General MULCAHY: Deputy Daly yesterday told us that a wise man could talk on this question for three days. Personally I feel he could not do it without obscuring the issue both for himself and for us. If there is one thing to be grateful for it seems to me to be that out of the uncertainties of the week before last the Executive have brought us a very clear-cut decision for our acceptance or rejection. It invites us to come to a clear-cut decision on it. There is no point in the Agreement before us that we might not discuss and consider for hours and go [1670] very far away from the clear-cut point in the Agreement. But we would have to come straight back to it in the end, and come back with a very straight, clear-cut outlook. There is no use when considering the financial side of this Agreement in drifting off into a consideration of the fact, say, that Deputy Professor O'Sullivan suggests to us, that the only alternative to the acceptance of this Agreement is the rejection of the Treaty. There is no use, in discussing the actual Boundary line, for us to go off into any discussion on the implication of the President's suggestion, that while his office door was open nobody came to him with suggestions of a better Boundary or suggestions as to how a better Boundary might be got. It cannot help us in coming to a decision as to whether we are going to accept the proposals with regard to the Council of Ireland or not to talk as to what might have been, or what might have become of the Council of Ireland if the late General Collins had lived to continue his 1922 negotiations with Sir James Craig.

It seems to me we have simply to take the proposal before us—a clear-cut proposal—and come to a clear-cut decision on it. As far as the financial settlement is concerned, I have no hesitation in deciding for myself that I would recommend the acceptance of that part of the Agreement. I am inclined even to say, “Cut your losses.” Then I feel that to say that would be almost unfair to a realisation of the possibilities that did lie in Article V., when considered in the President's words or considered in the strict and rigid atmosphere of international finance. I do suggest to the Dáil that we have got some kind of a whiff of that rigid and strict atmosphere from the British House of Lords this morning. A signatory to the 1921 Treaty reminds us of what he and his co-signatories thought when they put Article V. into the Treaty when he said:—

He and his co-signatories thought there might possibly come a moment when the immunity of Ireland from serious taxation would attract British capital, and British factories to [1671] establish themselves in Ireland to the prejudice of the commerce of Britain. They were greatly deceived in that apprehension. It was a fact that to-day taxation in Ireland was greater even than in Britain. Therefore, one of the principal reasons which led to the insertion of Article V. had completely disappeared in the economic development of the two countries.

I say I feel like suggesting that we must cut our losses, but actually we are cutting very great losses—loss of population, destruction of industries, stifling of economic development—due to the operations of the British Government in Ireland, and incomparable in their effects on our people to-day with any small losses that we might consider we are cutting in accepting the present proposal in regard to Article V. The losses that we cut in the stifling of our economic development are so great that there are British politicians who to-day pray to see to-morrow

“at the side of Britain a free and united Ireland, proud of her undoubted share in the foundation of the British Empire and actively contributing to its strength and progress.”

People who hope that, in Britain, quite complacently assure themselves to-day that they have brought about economic conditions in Ireland that are such as not to

“attract British capital and British factories to establish themselves in Ireland, to the prejudice of the commerce of Britain.”

In watering the new seeds of peace, we have to say thanks. Personally, I am prepared to take the decision on the matter and to say thanks.

There is just one point that instead of looking at the financial position from the very involved side that Deputy Hogan has looked at it, he might look at the “Handbook of the Ulster Question.” At, I think, page 99 he will see that the National Debt of Ireland at the time of the Union was twenty-eight and a half millions. If you work it down to counties, it represents a National Debt of £20,000,000 for the twenty-six counties at that particular [1672] time. It is difficult for us, perhaps, to get a statement as to what our National Debt is at the moment, but if we refer to Mr. Blythe's figures in his Budget statement of this year, we find that the net National Debt, at the beginning of this financial year, of the 26 counties was ten and a half millions, and if we are to reduce that, or if we are to say what that is in the light of money values at the time of the Union and now, it means that our National Debt, at the beginning of this financial year, was seven and a half millions. So that if we were to go into the strict and rigid atmosphere of international finances we cannot but think that we might run dangers and that in saying to-day that we are prepared to cut our losses under that we ought also be prepared to say we are prepared to cut the dangers under that.

As regards the Boundary question, are we going to accept the present Boundary? For my own part, I have no hesitation, in December, 1925, in saying “yes.” I am prepared to recommend that the present Boundary be accepted. We have, in the discussions that have taken place here, Deputy Johnson saying that, at times, even he saw that Clause XII. of the Treaty might bring about a state of disorder. Deputy Baxter tells us that he did not see very much hope from it. The Minister for Finance tells us that he did see hope. On the 24th November we were told from the benches of the Ministry that they had considered that “a substantially satisfactory way” of finding a Boundary was to take the 1911 census, and with that as “a substantially fair and accurate basis” for the deliberations of the Boundary Commission, draw a line between the Catholics and the Protestants of the North. We heard that statement with some amazement.

We have then come to the position in which a line is drawn, apparently with that as “a substantially fair and accurate basis,” and we find, when that happens, that the Castle of hope and the foundations of that Castle of the Minister for Finance come toppling down. He is not quite sure whether his hope rested in Article XII. I confess that on the 22nd of November, I could [1673] not have gone into the President's office and suggested a better Boundary. I have no hesitation, in the circumstances, in saying that the present Boundary is as good as we can get and that is the decision that I feel we are asked to take on that matter.

I have some misgivings on the matter of the Council of Ireland. I put them aside and I have been helped to put them aside by some of the things we have heard here. Some Deputies want the Council of Ireland kept and suggest that if the Council of Ireland were set aside, Ireland as a nation will disappear; that if we buy whatever we are getting at the present price, including the doing away with the Council of Ireland, Ireland will be wiped off the map as a nation. These words sting us back to realities and help us to a better conception of what Ireland must stand for as a nation, what Ireland has stood for as a nation. If some people consider that the wiping away of a legal link is going to sweep away the idea of Ireland as a nation, we certainly have not any fear when you are driven back to consider what Ireland really is and the impression that it has made not only on its own people but on the world. I have not the slightest fear that the doing away of the Council of Ireland is going to jeopardise the future of the general position of Ireland as a nation. We even find that those who have spoken against the doing away with the Council of Ireland have in their own hearts the same feeling that I have. Deputy Baxter yesterday was able to tell us that if a Deputy in the Northern Parliament could stand up there and could speak in the same spirit, arising out of the same experiences, that Deputy Thrift spoke in here, there would be no opposition to this measure. Even Deputy Johnson feels that in the North, in association with one another in other walks of life than politics, there are elements that would bring about the unity that we desire. If we have misgivings about leaving the Council of Ireland go, then are we going to keep the Council of Ireland if it is going to re-open the Article V. and the Article XII. position, with their admitted dangers to-day, or are we going [1674] to push them back, and are we, with the faith and hope in ourselves and our country as a nation, going to say that the sweeping away of this legal connection is not going to stand in the way of the Irish people building up their own country? If we accept this Agreement, as I am sure we will, we are putting aside one particular friction with Britain, I believe we are putting another particular friction aside between ourselves and the Irishmen who live in the Six Counties. We must realise the fact that a Boundary question did exist between the Six Counties and ourselves has reacted badly on the success of the Irish people in the Six Counties and the success of ourselves in doing the work of building up Ireland and of carrying on the work of the Irish nation here for the last two or three years.

If we approach it to-morrow, feeling that with Britain some particular source of friction and with the North some particular source of friction, has gone, there is not the slightest doubt in my mind but that we shall find ourselves as interested to-morrow in how the Six-County people are dealing with their Irish matters up there, as we found ourselves a few weeks ago taking an interest in how the Canadians, tackled some of their particular problems and how the United States people tackled some of theirs. If, in taking full control of their railway questions and their fishing questions, the Irish people in the north of Ireland tackle these questions and their solution, I submit that it will be a help to us towards the solution of these similar questions here and I summit that you will probably have them looking over the Border to see how we are tackling these problems here.

Mr. JOHNSON: May I ask the Deputy as regards Canada and the United States, is he referring to the political unity between the provinces of Canada or the political dis-unity, notwithstanding the contiguity of the Border between the United States and Canada?

General MULCAHY: I am speaking, sir, of a people however politically organised, standing over their own problems and examining them and dealing [1675] with them. It does not matter, to my mind, whether the Northern people hand portions of their financial matters into the hands of Britain, which we do not here.

Mr. JOHNSON: Why did Ireland struggle against England for political independence?

General MULCAHY: Why is Ireland struggling for political independence, and why did we secure under the Treaty of 1921 that if the Irish people of the Six Counties wanted their complete independence, as far as British control is concerned, that they could have it? I want to see in the circumstances of to-day, and I am prepared to see, the people of the Six Counties tackling their problems and seeing what are the difficulties, whether it is the want of union with their southern countrymen or whether it is the control by Britain of their finances, or any other matter that is interfering with them or making Irish life in the Six Counties what it should not be.

I do not know what may develop from the present situation for Irish unity, or even against Irish unity, but I have my faith in my country and I am satisfied that those who have spoken, even against this Agreement in full, or the Agreement in part, have equal faith in their countrymen, and standing over the whole of this Agreement and deciding whether we are going to say whether it should come into effect or not, we have to ask ourselves, does the acceptance of this Agreement make more bright or more dim the coming of Irish unity.

Personally, I say that, to me, it makes it more bright. That is, as I say, taking a clear-cut agreement and trying to make a clear-cut decision on it—a decision that is going to bring us along the working out of our Irish problems generally. Such a clear-cut decision should give us a push along the road, new to some extent, that is opening before us.

Deputy Thrift has spoken of the Nationalists in the Six Counties and I appreciate very much what he has said in regard to them. I have faith that they are not going to mourn over the disappointments of to-day or the hopes [1676] of yesterday, but that they are going to face their difficulties and their work with as much energy and as much vigour as they ever faced them. We are concerned with the British people and with their attitude towards Ireland. As long as there is a dividing line in Ireland, there will be a blemish and a slur in our minds on the British people. Partition in Ireland is their creation. I have emphasised the fact here before that the Treaty of 1921 was signed with a spirit awakened in the British politicians of that time and a feeling of admission that they were responsible for partition in Ireland and that they were committed to leaving no stone unturned to bring about the ending of that partition. The President has assured us that the British agreed to close all outstanding questions of controversy and he said that the Agreement removed at one sweep the main outstanding sources of dispute between the two parties. I feel that that is a statement that would require some further touching on by the President, when replying to the criticisms that have been made here, because we do know of many questions of controversy outstanding and likely to be outstanding between us.

As far as the British people are concerned, I have emphasised time and again and in different places that in the 1916 movement and the movement for independence all down from that time I have never come across traces in our people of race antagonism to the British people, and I do not think it can be shown that as between the two peoples the Irish people have ever entertained race antagonism against the British. But we cannot say that we have not been bitterly antagonistic and that we have not had reasons to be antagonistic to those who were accepted by the British people as their political leaders. The political leaders of the British people have given us partition. They have given us those questions of controversy that have arisen between us and they will give us those questions of controversy in the future. I would like to hear from the President whether, when he says that a new spirit of friendship is evidenced by British statesmen in their conversations in connection [1677] with this Agreement, there is an end, or whether he sees the coming of an end in these statesmen of a desire to subordinate Irish interests and Irish economic development to the interests of Britain and to the economic development of Britain.

Major MYLES: Article V. has been so fully dealt with by Deputy Connor Hogan that I think it has passed outside our scope. For the past three days, we have heard a great deal about minorities. Yesterday evening Deputy McCullough referred to the class of minorities that had been previously referred to—minorities outside the Free State area. I think if Deputy McCullough had confined himself to the minority in his own constituency it would have been better. I speak of the minority that helped to return him to the Dáil over a year ago, the minority that almost caused a panic in the Dáil several weeks ago, the minority that put its case before the Boundary Commission, as I think it was fully entitled to do, and who if we are to judge by the alleged award, which has not been, and is not going to be, published, must have put up a very strong case before that Commission. I must say that when that minority put its case before the Boundary Commission every assistance was given to it to do so. No obstruction was put in its way by the Free State Government at any time whatsoever; quite the reverse. The three Governments concerned, having decided in their wisdom that this award was not to take effect, the people of East Donegal would be uninvited guests if they rapped at the doors of the Belfast Parliament. That is not a position that these people would wish to be placed in. That is the burthen of my correspondence. Some of my correspondence this morning consists of two words—two words which have been bandied about the Dáil a good deal during the past few days. These two words are: “Sold again.” These people were not sold by the Free State Government. If there was bargaining going on, the Free State Government has in my opinion made a very good deal by retaining a people who are among the most industrious and law-abiding in the whole of the Free State [1678] —a people whom any country would be glad to retain and keep within their boundaries.

In these circumstances I welcome the President's declaration of goodwill. I welcome this spirit of comradeship not only among the people on either side of the Border but between the two Governments concerned, and I suggest to the President, and through him, to the Executive Council, that in pursuance of his policy in that direction one of the first steps he should take should be towards removing entirely that unholy Customs barrier that accentuates more than anything else the division between North and South.

Mr. JOHNSON: That is coming.

Major MYLES: I live on the Border——

Mr. GOREY: That explains it.

Major MYLES: I know much more than the Deputies from the farthest end of Ireland, who have gone deeply into this question, the conditions there. I state here that the Customs barrier to-day is a barrier one hundred times worse than any political barrier that exists there.

Mr. T. O'CONNELL: That will be the next thing to go.

Major MYLES: Because I have faith in the bona fides of the President, because I believe in his declaration of peace and goodwill, and his evident determination to bring this matter to such a conclusion as will be for the good of this country and because no other alternative has been put up which would result in anything else than chaos and anarchy, I am determined to vote for the Second Reading of this Bill.

Mr. McGOLDRICK: As a Borderland Deputy, in common with my friend, Deputy Myles, I wish to state in a few words the considerations that will decide my vote on this occasion. I am sorry I cannot admire the simplicity displayed by our Executive Council in relation to this Boundary Commission. It is said that under Article XII. we did not hold a very sound position. It was loosely drawn, but however loosely it may have been drawn it was the duty [1679] of the Executive Council to see at least that what it required to make it effective was supplied, and the only thing it did require to make it effective was the appointment of an honest man as Chairman of the Commission. Our Executive Government should have seen that before any acceptance was given to this Commission the credentials of the Chairman were examined and that he had a record for impartiality and independence that would entitle him to be accepted. This does not appear to have been done, and no steps in that connection were evidently taken. I should further say that we owe very little to the Labour Government in England for the appointment of this particular gentleman as Chairman of this Commission.

Mr. DAVIN: May I ask the Deputy if the Government agreed to accept this man's name when it was submitted to them?

Mr. McGOLDRICK: Nílim chun freagra a thabhairt do'n Teachta a chuir isteach orm. Da dtabharfainn freagra do gach Teachta a bhfuil freagra uaidh, ní bhéinn in ánn rud ar bith eile a rádh.

When this Commission proceeded to do its work and was nearing the finish we learned that its award was likely to land us into a real and horrible sort of war, particularly in Tirconaill. That was the area that was most affected, and this decision was actually in flagrant violation of their terms of reference. It was a decision which they had no authority to formulate in accordance with any sane interpretation of Article XII. of the Treaty. Any award made by the Commission would have been of little concern if, the moment it was made, it did not have full force of law. This rumoured decision on the part of the Boundary Commission caused the Tirconaill Deputies to take action, and I must say that the Executive Council immediately responded in this matter. Our representative on the Commission withdrew. The British Government, realising their responsibility for the people in North-East Ulster, called a conference and the Agreement we have [1680] before us is the result of that conference.

I would have wished that, when our representatives approached this question with Britain and Northern Ireland, they would have approached it from a different point of view. I had hoped that they had taken into account the advisability of trying to assist Sir, James Craig in getting an easement of the financial obligations he owed to Britain under the 1920 Act. In return for this assistance they should have got guarantees of full rights of citizenship and representation for our people retained in this area, who were entitled to be released under Article XII. They would, I believe, have got such conditions as would be acceptable and as would enable them to secure and retain within the northern area the full rights of equality and fair play they are entitled to.

Instead of that our representatives went for a consolation prize on their being let down in the Boundary Commission. That consolation prize is the cancellation of Article V. They have now got instead an unwritten undertaking of goodwill, mutual co-operation and trust. They allege this is much more valuable than paper guarantees. That has got to be proved. I, at least, take such understandings. They are mutually accepted as the basis of this Agreement. Whether the Agreement is given full effect to or is fully complied with, depends upon whether these mutual guarantees are fully honoured. If they are, there is no question of their value. It is a better solution of the difficulty than any other guarantees that would be given in a more formal way.

In Tirconaill we are now manoeuvred into the position that we must, as representatives of our people, vote for this Agreement or permit the ruination of our country and its people. It is an extraordinary position to be put into, when we had our rights under Article XII. to have neighbouring areas transferred to our State and when we had true concord in all civil and administrative affairs from all sections of our people, to find that about one-fifth of our county was to be absolutely cut off without any way of keeping up its [1681] associations with its own State owing to the intervening area being filched away, leaving the residue of our county absolutely uneconomic, disconnected and completely paralysed. It was against that situation that the whole of Tirconaill expressed themselves in such a strenuous and determined way. The people rose against the putting into operation of the decision of the Feetham Commission.

References have been made to the position in Tirconaill by Deputies on the Farmers' Benches and the Labour Benches. It seemed to be inferred from these references that we, envisaging the possibility of our people being transferred to the Six Counties, were in a state of great panic and that we were not troubled about the people who were being retained in the area of the Free State and who had a right to release. It was also insinuated in these references that we were terribly incensed about the loss of £60,000 rateable valuations, and that we had no consideration for Sir James Craig in regard to valuations that might have been transferred from his area. We were not concerned with anything beyond the fact that our county was going to be rendered absolutely uneconomic and that it could not possibly carry on if the decision were given effect to.

I see no alternative to Agreement except this Feetham Boundary. This Agreement preserves the integrity of our county. It is a very important matter for our constituents. As Deputies of Tirconaill, we have received representations asking us to secure and maintain the integrity of our county. For my part, I have received only one communication of the opposite sort. I think Tirconaill Deputies have received few communications of the opposite type beyond perhaps from isolated individuals in relation to this question.

The Agreement is based on an undertaking of good-will, and is in no way irrevocable, and there have been arranged consultation and conference between both Governments. We are told that this will ensure a less enduring form of the partitionment already accepted in the Treaty. There is room for difference of opinion as to this, and [1682] I feel that no matter what substance may be in such gestures, unity will come more speedily through the full application of the economic weapon in the hands of our Finance Minister. In the words of Griffith in relation to the Treaty, this is no more a final partitioning of this nation than that this is the final generation of Irishmen.

With regard to the people who remain within the control of the Six County Government, some 100,000 at the maximum could only, under any conditions in that area, hope to get a transfer to the Free State. Some 100,000 out of 450,000 people could hope for a transfer. The other 350,000 people who would have to remain under any conditions are calling out through their Press for the acceptance of this Agreement. Any person voting for its acceptance is voting at the behest of those 350,000.

Last night Deputy McCullough, when he was proposing to vote against this Agreement, said he was not doing so as a representative of Tirconaill. We understand his commitments elsewhere and I, on my part, am not very much surprised at the action he has taken. I am sure a great many people in the county where he was recently elected a member will be considerably surprised that he could consider it his duty to take such an action on such an important occasion.

Deputy Major Myles referred to the Customs barrier. I have not assumed, and I do not believe that we were the parties responsible for putting the Customs barrier there. So long as that Customs barrier remains I would urge that it should be retained with the utmost rigidity. I do not see why any easement should be made in that respect. It is our duty to see that our finances are properly collected and looked after, and that our revenue is not filched from us. I do not see that there should be any easement on our part beyond what is necessary to accommodate agricultural produce on both sides. As far as trade is concerned, and as far as the interchanges of commerce are concerned, I think our barrier interests should be rigidly attended to, and I do not think any easements should be [1683] given until those who have set up the Customs barrier see the error of their way and allow it to be removed altogether.

MINISTER for LANDS and AGRICULTURE (Mr. Hogan): I will promise to be as brief as I can. This debate reminds me somewhat of the Treaty debate, particularly in one respect. In debating the Treaty it was perfectly clear that what the majority of the Opposition objected to was not so much a Treaty, not so much this clause or that clause in the Treaty, but the fact that a decision had been come to, the fact that something definite had been done, that something tangible had been done. It seems to me the same situation is repeated here. I sat through this debate, with intervals, and I heard the arguments put up by the Opposition, inconsistent, confused, repeated, and I can only explain them on the basis that what the Opposition really objects to is that some definite decision has been come to.

That is an extraordinary state of affairs. If you take the broad points seriatim I think they will make my meaning perfectly clear. Take the boundary line, for instance. Some Deputies will tell you—if you take them literally—that this Agreement creates a boundary line for the first time. Some Deputies will say they object to the present boundary line; they will go on then to use arguments which could only be justified and explained on the basis that they object to any other boundary line; and then they will immediately return and explain why a boundary line a little further north would be a lot better.

I do not know whether Deputy Baxter meant it or not, but he put the point that I am trying to explain clearly when he said this present boundary line would be the best, or rather when he said it would be better that the Feetham award should come into operation, because we would have no responsibility for the boundary line. It would be better if there was never any arrangement made for arbitration because we would have no responsibility for a particular boundary line. [1684] In other words, it would be better we should wrangle about the boundary line afterwards; it would be better have indefiniteness. That is the whole trend of this debate. It is a protest against accepting a logical treatment of the position; it is a protest against definiteness and against the removal of something which it was hoped we could wrangle about later.

Deputy Corish made a short speech rather unlike any speech I have heard him make in the Dáil. He protested first that we were unconstitutional, that we had broken the Constitution. He laboured the point that we had broken the Constitution, but he did not attempt to explain his statement. He simply kept repeating that phrase. He more or less suggested what he intended to say. What he really objected to was that the Executive Council made an agreement and came here and put something definite before the Dáil. What he really suggested was that they should not have come to a decision, not to a final decision but only a decision to recommend something. The objection seemed to be that the Executive Council did come to a decision, and that is really the aspect of this particular situation which I like. It is because the Executive Council came to a definite decision, which left no room for wrangling and which achieved something definite, that I am, above all other reasons, backing this Agreement. That is what we want above all things in this country. We want some body or some Government to come to some definite decision, stand over that decision constitutionally, and be prepared to stand over it. That spirit will do more to build up Irish nationalism than any amount of vague talk here.

Mr. JOHNSON: Does the Minister say that the decisions which preceded this were not definite?

The PRESIDENT: What decisions?

Mr. JOHNSON: The decisions the President announced to the Dáil.

The PRESIDENT: I will deal with that.

Mr. HOGAN: I do not understand what the Deputy means.

[1685] Mr. JOHNSON: The last decision.

Mr. HOGAN: As to the Agreement itself, it recommends to the Dáil the existing Boundary line. I feel foolish —I think Deputy Professor O'Sullivan said the same thing in different language—in telling the Dáil that a Boundary line existed first in 1916 and next in 1920. It existed, and was accepted by certain representative people first in 1916, next in 1920, and again in 1921, so that a Boundary line is not something new. That is a fact which is known to every man, woman and child in the country. If you were to take 75 per cent. of what has been said here by the Opposition literally, you would imagine that those Deputies heard it for the first time when the Executive Council put it before the Dáil. I merely repeat that now and leave it so. Deputies then go on and explain that this Boundary line means, according to the language that has been used, selling the Nationalists of the North. Some speaker pointed out that it is really a question of a Boundary line a little, perhaps, further south or, perhaps, twenty or thirty miles further north, and between this Boundary line there is this area only under discussion. Speakers get up and repeat over and over again that we are selling the Nationalists of the North. I cannot understand it. I interpret these extraordinary, confused, and inconsistent arguments to mean that what Deputies really object to is a definite Agreement. They would prefer to have something which is indefinite and capable of a great many interpretations—something which could be wrangled about. I do not know that anything that I may say will persuade certain Opposition Deputies that the Executive Council and the people who made the Agreement approached this matter, not only from the point of view of the Free State and the people affected by the Border, but also from the point of view of the people of the whole country. When you consider the plight of the Nationalist minority in the North, what you have to consider is not whether this settlement is the best possible settlement for the particular areas nearest to the Border which may be affected, but whether it is the best settlement for [1686] the Nationalist minority in the North, from Belfast to Newry, as well as the best settlement for the Free State as a whole.

All these factors have to be taken into account, not only in their bearings on the present position of the minority in the North, and of the Free State generally, but also in their bearings on possible developments in the future. The people who made that Agreement had to take into account both the present and the future position and do the best they could in the light of all these factors. I suggest that they did so. I suggest that the “Irish News” of Belfast, speaking for two or three hundred thousand Nationalists in the North, told the truth when it said that this is the best Agreement. Whether Deputies agree or disagree they should give the Executive Council credit for being disinterested in the matter, and, at least, admit that it is an arguable point that if a representative newspaper like the “Irish News,” speaking for probably the overwhelming majority of the Nationalists of the North, says that this is the best settlement that could be made, then I suggest that Deputies are not using correct language when they speak of selling and betraying the Nationalists of the North. With regard to Article V. I would point out that that Article was inserted by the British and they insisted on its insertion. What the Executive Council have done is that they have persuaded the British to withdraw an Article which they insisted on inserting. Why did they insist on its insertion? They are not fools.

Mr. DAVIN: Mr. Churchill explained it as eye-wash.

The PRESIDENT: That was not his term.

Mr. DAVIN: Not exactly.

Mr. BAXTER: Lord Carson.

Mr. HOGAN: Why did they insert that Article? Was it to pay us something under it? Of course Deputies smile with their superior financial knowledge. The British Treasury generally knows its business and it inserted this Article expressly and insisted upon its insertion. Neither Collins nor Griffith asked for it. It appeared in the first proposal which was published [1687] in the Press in June, 1921. Why? Because they, like Deputies on the other side of the House, thought that they would have to pay us something under it? Other Deputies take up the position that an arbitrator under Article V. might find that we owed something to Britain but that in any event we need not pay it. That is an extraordinary attitude for people who have been agitating for self-government, and who say they are prepared to accept all the responsibility of self-government. We are, apparently, to go on wrangling as to whether we are liable for this money, and if we are liable whether we should pay it. It all comes back to what I said before and that is, that the real objection in the minds of many Deputies is that Article V. has been taken away and there has thereby been removed a definite element of uncertainty.

Mr. JOHNSON: Could the Minister name any person who objected to taking out Article V.? There was not a single one.

Mr. HOGAN: The Deputy has taken me up on the words “taking out Article V.” He has got a debating point there. Perhaps I should have said “the present method of dealing with Article V.” That would, perhaps, make it clearer. The real objection to the present method of dealing with that Article is that it removes the uncertainty of dealing with it. I can see no other argument. Those Deputies professed to be speaking for the country.

Mr. DAVIN: Do you challenge the fact that we speak for it? Put it to the country if you have the courage.

Mr. HOGAN: Deputy Davin will, I hope, speak next.

Mr. DAVIN: Put it to the country.

Mr. HOGAN: There is a way of putting it to the country. We have a Constitution. There is a way of putting this to the country and there is no occasion to get excited about it. We will see whether that will be done or not. Let me go on.

Mr. MORRISSEY: Do you let other people go on?

[1688] Mr. HOGAN: I think I did not interrupt more than usual. In all the circumstances I am surprised at my own moderation. As I was saying, that point of view was put up by certain Deputies. There is not a single business man, or any man who thinks rationally, who would not agree that, whatever the advantages or disadvantages of this particular method of dealing with Article V., there is one great difficulty which it removes, and that is the serious uncertainty which was affecting our credit. I am not going to present a balance sheet to the Dáil and I need make no excuse for not doing so. Arbitrations between countries are unusual. They are not like arbitrations which take place as the result of dissolutions of partnership between individuals. It would probably take months to decide the principles on which such arbitration would proceed. Article V. was to operate from its date, namely, 6th December, 1921. It contemplated that Ireland was to assume liability, subject to a certain set-off, for portion of the public debt of the United Kingdom as well as war pensions. Suppose that the date was altered and that that Article operated, not as from December, 1921, but, say, 1914, and suppose that as a result of a settlement at that time we succeeded in showing that England owed us £50,000,000 or £60,000,000, most people would applaud and say that we did very well. In the light of that I would put a sum in proportion to the Dáil. If England owed us £50,000,000 in 1914 when her National Debt, for portion of which we assumed liability, was eighteen hundred millions, what would we owe her in 1924 when the National Debt was eight thousand millions? I commend that to the financiers who are ready to say that the settlement under the Agreement in connection with Article V. is unsound.

Mr. BAXTER: Deal with the points of view of Mr. Churchill and Lord Birkenhead.

Mr. HOGAN: I did not intend to refer to the matter on which Deputy Baxter has made a point. When the Deputy was speaking he quoted what Sir James Craig said, and what Mr. [1689] Pollock and others said. It is extraordinary the point of view Deputy Baxter takes from reading the speeches of his opponents.

Mr. BAXTER: I know their mentality.

Mr. HOGAN: What is responsible for the mentality of this country is people rushing to the papers——

Mr. CORISH: You quoted the “Irish News.”

Mr. HOGAN: People rush to the papers, and read statements made by people who have another and an opposite interest, and form their opinions from them. That is a diseased point of view.

Mr. JOHNSON: Is the Minister saying the Northern interest is opposite to ours?

ACTING CHAIRMAN: I think the Minister should be allowed to proceed.

Mr. HOGAN: That is a point of view that is responsible for a futile position. Things should be examined on their merits, and should not take as accurate and gospel what men with a completely opposite point of view say. As to Deputy Baxter's remark as to what Mr. Churchill said, surely any business man knows that the point does not carry conviction. The British Treasury was one party to the arbitration, and it was their business to obtain as much money as possible. That is one thing, but the views of the British Treasury after coming to a settlement by agreement is another matter. That is an ordinary canon of business, as every man with business instincts knows, but it does not seem to have penetrated into this House. Mr. Churchill putting up his case in an arbitration court under Article V. is one Mr. Churchill, but Mr. Churchill stating his position in the House of Commons after an agreement had been come to waiving Article V. is quite another thing, and though Deputies profess not to see the distinction, I suggest it is a distinction that would be obvious to any normal business man. I think the most extraordinary point is that we have admitted [1690] the Irish Volunteers and the Irish Government had no authority because we agree to pay this £5,000,000. It is a debating point, and I suppose everybody who has made it appreciates that it is a mere debating point, but it has been put up and has to be answered. Because we agreed to assume a certain liability which the British had assumed to pay compensation for destruction done from 1918 to 1921, we have admitted that the Irish Volunteers and the Irish Government had no authority in their respective spheres. This is an extraordinary contention.

Now the British made a Treaty with the said Irish Government. That was something of an admission. The British evacuated their Army and surrendered their posts to the Irish Volunteers. That was something of an admission, and the same with regard to their police—I think that was a further admission. But under the Treaty under which they did all that, they inserted a clause asking us to assume a certain liability. Now that is changed. That particular article has been withdrawn, and their attitude now is: “We ask you for no payments, but, on the other hand, we gain nothing,” and we said: “Right; there will be no indemnities paid by us; we pay you nothing and you pay us nothing.” Because we have come to that agreement, forsooth we have done something that amounts to an admission that the Irish Volunteers had no status in 1918-1921. Was there ever such an argument put up? That has passed as a serious argument here during the last three days. As to the Council of Ireland, the Labour Party met when the Agreement had been published in the papers, and they sent a long statement to the Press in which, I think, they used the words “unmitigated betrayal” and “audacity,” and wild language of that sort, which was all concentrated on one point, that the Council of Ireland had been surrendered. Deputy Johnson made a long and carefully-reasoned speech here to show that the unity of the country had been destroyed once and for all because of the decision come to with regard to the Council of Ireland. Listening to that speech, and thinking of that statement, I found it extremely difficult [1691] to realise that six months previously Deputy Johnson had described that Council as being, in the main, something to bargain with, a weapon of interference, and yet on this Agreement that means so much for the future of the country one way or another we had an hour's elaborate speech from Deputy Johnson saying that the Council of Ireland was a great thing in the Treaty of 1921 and preserved the unity of the country. Which Deputy Johnson are we to believe, the Deputy Johnson of six months ago or the Deputy Johnson of to-day?

Mr. O'HIGGINS: Neither.

Mr. T.J. O'CONNELL: Or the Ministers of last year or this year?

Mr. HOGAN: Both. How are we to be expected to take the arguments against this Agreement seriously when we are faced with inconsistencies of that sort? Irish nationalism, Deputy Johnson and others told us, is destroyed. Irish nationalism embraces a great many factors—political, economic, social and cultural. Irish nationalism in the Six Counties is not in the least affected by any consideration as to whether the Boundary should be exactly where it is, or twenty or fifty miles farther north. That would not affect Irish nationalism one way or another in the North. With regard to the South, I say that Irish nationalism is not the particular monopoly of any Deputy in the Dáil; it is the nationalism of the rank and file of our constituents. I say that Irish nationalism, whether in Donegal, which adjoins the Border, or in Cork, has a long road to travel before it is stopped by the Border, and I suggest that Irish nationalism has the right to the opportunity to travel that road.

Mr. DAVIN: Every piece of legislation that has been introduced either in the Constituent Assembly elected in 1922 or in this House which affected the Treaty, or which proposed to amend or alter it in any way, has been presented as an accomplished fact, and with having no alternative but war. Certainly that is not the position Deputies should be put in by the Executive [1692] Council. If that was the position, as it was on many occasions, the responsibility for mismanagement was theirs. I was going to ask the President, who stated when introducing this measure that it had the support of the huge majority of the Irish people, what machinery he had made use of to ascertain the accuracy of that statement. I have since discovered that the means of ascertaining the wishes of the people of this country was through the leading articles of the Beaverbrook Press in this country. That was not the attitude of the Government when articles were written in regard to the Medical Registrar, and one hundred and one other things, once they did not suit the Executive Council. We are asked have we any alternative. Many members who did not like the Agreement and who, like Deputy Connor Hogan, criticised every clause of it, suggested that they had no alternative but surrender. If the Premier of Northern Ireland is as friendly to-day as he was in 1922 I say the agreement he came to then with Michael Collins is the alternative. That is:—

“(a) That the Boundary Commissioned as outlined in the Treaty be altered, the Government of the Free State and of Northern Ireland to appoint one representative each to report to Mr. Collins and Sir James Craig on behalf of their respective Governments on the future boundaries between the two.

(b) The two Governments to endeavour to devise a more suitable system than the Council of Ireland for dealing with problems affecting all Ireland.”

Sir James Craig in 1922 realised, and I am sure he had good reasons to do so, that the Council of Ireland was of some use to that portion of which he is in control, and I think that the late Michael Collins when coming to that agreement must have realised that it would be of some use to the Free State also.

That is the alternative. Are we to understand that Sir James Craig has retraced his steps from the position that he took up in 1922? If not, is that Agreement of 1922 not a better one [1693] than that which is presented to us to-day? I fail to believe that the British Government on their part and Sir James Craig on his would go to war to break an agreement to which Sir James Craig was a party in 1922, and I say that that is the alternative, and this Party had that in their minds when they opposed in this House the setting up of the Boundary Commission as the solution and the final solution of the Boundary difficulty.

The PRESIDENT: You kept it very tight.

Mr. DAVIN: During this debate I have listened to most of the speeches, and, like the old saying, “The longer you live the more you learn.” When I listened to the Ministers, read the speeches of the British Ministers in the House of Commons and the interpretation put on the Agreement by Sir James Craig, I said that it was well worth having this debate for three or four days to learn what these people's views were with regard to the interpretation of the Agreement. Speaking on this Agreement yesterday in the Northern Parliament Sir James Craig said that “at that time he impressed upon Mr. Collins the fact that there never could be a real harmonious working between the two areas unless the Governments were placed upon an equality regarding all services, and that the statesmanlike policy was for the Executives to meet and, having equal powers and an equal say in the affairs involved, mutually agree to carry out with executive authority whatever arrangement might be arrived at.” He went on to say:—“The general agreement to which he had referred was an improvement”—that is the one you have presented to us now—“as besides transferring the Council of Ireland services to Northern Ireland it sets out definitely that ‘the extent of Northern Ireland for purposes of the Government of Ireland Act, 1920, and of the said Articles of Agreement shall be such as was fixed by sub-section (2) of Section 1 of that Act,” “we have,” he said, and he has a good right to say it, “therefore, vindicated our position, discharged our every obligation and kept faith with the Loyalists of [1694] Ulster.” He has every right to congratulate himself upon the settlement he made.

Now I want to know from the President if, during the course of the negotiations in London this agreement of 1922 was considered as an alternative to the one now presented, and if it is the considered opinion of the Executive Council that this Agreement is a better one than that signed with Sir James Craig by the late General Collins? I want an answer to that. I want also to deal with Deputy McGoldrick, our friend from Tirconaill, who has left the House. He said that the responsibility for the fishy Feetham line, that no one knows what it is, must rest upon the British Labour Party because they, who were in power at the time, found this Mr. Justice Feetham, whom you agreed should be the Chairman of the Boundary Commission. I want to deal with the negotiations previous to the discovery of the man who to-day is said to be different from what you found him to be when you agreed to his appointment as Chairman of the Commission. I understand that formal, or if you like, informal negotiations, went on in the Viceregal Lodge and elsewhere last year as a result of the pressure from your side to set up this Boundary Commission. I understand that in these negotiations certain proposals were put up, officially or unofficially, directly or indirectly, in connection with this Boundary Commission, and I want a definite answer from the President to this question: Was any proposal made by the British Labour Government, or on their behalf by any of their officials, directly or indirectly to the President or the Executive Council, in the Viceregal Lodge or elsewhere, that if they did not insist on the setting up of the Boundary Commission the British Government on their part would forego any claim under Article V. of the Treaty?

The PRESIDENT: Would the Deputy repeat the question?

Mr. DAVIN: Yes. I want to know if any proposal was made by the British Labour Government to this effect, that if you on your part did not insist on the setting up of the Boundary Commission [1695] the British Government would forego any claim under Article V. of the Treaty, that they would write it off.

The PRESIDENT: I never heard any such suggestion.

Mr. DAVIN: I accept the President's contradiction. Perhaps there will be more heard about it later on, either inside or outside this House.

The PRESIDENT: I think, however, that that is rather an unfair question. “Was any proposal made, directly or indirectly, officially or unofficially?” I must say that I have a very good memory, but to recollect every official and every unofficial and every semi-official suggestion of that sort is certainly beyond my capacity. That no official made a suggestion unofficially, or anything of that sort, is a thing that I cannot say. No direct communication was made to me by any responsible person that such a proposal was under consideration.

Mr. DAVIN: Verbally.

The PRESIDENT: To say that I heard the suggestion—yes, many a time I heard it.

Mr. JOHNSON: Did any responsible citizen of the Free State make any proposal of that nature to the Ministry here?

The PRESIDENT: Not that I remember. I would like to know the name of the person in question.

Mr. DAVIN: Names do not matter as much as whether it is a fact or not.

The PRESIDENT: There is, apparently, an allegation and there is, I must say, an attempt made to implicate the Executive Council, or a prominent member of it, or some member of it, in a bargain, a suggested bargain. I say that it is contrary to my notions of public rectitude that a matter of that sort should be circulated in this way, and the Deputy must bring out the whole of the circumstances and give the names and dates, because public life will not admit of allegations and insinuations like that. Let us know them.

[1696] Mr. DAVIN: If the President had only given denial to the suggestion I would have accepted it.

The PRESIDENT: I cannot give a denial that some official might in some way or other have mentioned such a thing. It is out of the question.

Mr. DAVIN: It is only if such a proposal was made.

The PRESIDENT: Prove it if there was such a proposal.

Mr. DAVIN: The President has not contradicted it.

The PRESIDENT: I have contradicted it to this extent, that on behalf of the Government no such suggestion was ever put to them.

Mr. DAVIN: I accept that. The proposed Feetham line, which has never been clearly explained to the House by any member of the Executive Council, is apparently in doubt. The Minister for Justice said that he was informed by Deputy Professor MacNeill that the Feetham line, as outlined in the “Morning Post,” was substantially accurate. Mr. Baldwin, dealing with the same question in the British House of Commons—the forecast of the report—said that he hoped the House would not be misled by any forecast as to the contents of the Commissioners' report, that the map which had appeared and the statements which had been made were, in many respects, far from accurate. These two statements do not seem to coincide.

Mr. O'HIGGINS: It shows an absence of collusion.

Mr. DAVIN: Mr. Baldwin's statement, as far as I can see, was made as a result of his having seen the maps and read the report, and the statement by the Minister for Justice was made as a result of a conversation that he had with Deputy Professor MacNeill.

Mr. O'HIGGINS: That is so.

Mr. DAVIN: Statements have been made here regarding the question of partition, and an attempt has been made to throw responsibility for partition upon the Irish Party. I am not [1697] here to defend the Irish Party; three ex-members of it are members of this House, and they can defend it, but as quotations are in fashion and have been given by many Deputies I think it is no harm for me to give a quotation from a man who, I am sure, commands the respect of the majority of the people of this country—at least he did so when he was in the political world. This statement was made by the Governor-General, then Mr. T. M. Healy, on the 19th October, 1921, at a time when a question was being discussed as to the rights of the minority in the North in connection with the Treaty then under consideration in London. He said:

In 1914, Mr. Redmond and Mr. Dillon, at the Buckingham Palace Conference, with Messrs. Carson and Craig, on the eve of the war, refused to purchase Home Rule by any such surrender, yet seven years later Sinn Feiners are expected to crawl down to a tamer position than that of the dethroned Parliamentarians, and go forth to history as signatories to a pact in Downing Street which Mr. Redmond refused to make in a Royal Palace.

I wonder, if we could get the Governor-General from behind the high walls of the Viceregal Lodge, what he would say to his young Ministers, to whom in other matters he gives very good advice.

Mr. CONLAN: What does Deputy Murphy say to it? Perhaps his colleagues would consult him on the point.

Mr. DAVIN: At any rate it goes to prove that the story that was trotted out at the 1918 general election, and which, as a matter of fact, had the result of throwing out the Irish Party, was that it was the Irish Party who had accepted partition, be it temporary or permanent. When I come to examine my position as an individual Deputy with regard to voting on this matter, I have got to take into consideration the views of the people on the direct issue that was raised in the general election of 1918. The Minister for Justice, in the 1918 election, stood [1698] for the constituency which I now, with Deputy Egan and others, represent, and the real issue in that election and the arguments against the Irish Party candidates were that the Irish Party had sold the country by agreeing to temporary partition. I believe that if I, and Deputy Egan, who supports this motion, had told our constituents at the 1923 general election that one of the things we would be responsible for if and when elected to the Dáil would be permanent partition we would not be here to-day.

Mr. O'HIGGINS: Did you not stand pro-Treaty?

Mr. DAVIN: I certainly did——

The PRESIDENT: Did not the Deputy take the oath to the Constitution?

Mr. DAVIN: I took the oath to the Constitution.

The PRESIDENT: In that way you took an oath to partition.

Mr. DAVIN: Certainly not.

The PRESIDENT: Read it.

Mr. JOHNSON: Does the President allege that when he accepted the Treaty he thought it was perpetuating partition?

The PRESIDENT: In certain eventualities, yes.

Mr. DAVIN: I must certainly admit, although I am not very much of a politician, that I am ignorant of the whole foundation of the Treaty if the President wants to make out now that it meant, or eventually would lead to, the permanent partition of the country.

The PRESIDENT: I said in certain eventualities.

Mr. DAVIN: I do not mean certain eventualities.

The PRESIDENT: Look into it.

Professor MAGENNIS: Would it be fair to ask if the President always held that view, or is it a recent decision?

The PRESIDENT: I will tell you that later, and I will show you where you voted for it yourself.

[1699] Professor MAGENNIS: Unfortunately I cannot speak after you.

Mr. DAVIN: At any rate it is a well-known fact, and there is no use in the President denying it now, that the issue in the 1918 General Election was against the Irish Party for their having sold the country and having made it possible in time, or under certain circumstances, for partition to be made permanent. That was the issue upon which the Minister for Justice won Leix and Offaly against the strongest local man that could ever be put up in that constituency.

Mr. O'HIGGINS: I deny that. That was not the issue.

Captain REDMOND: What was the issue?

Mr. BAXTER: It was one of the issues.

Mr. O'HIGGINS: I cannot exactly make another speech now. The issue certainly was not partition. The issue was abstention from the British Parliament in all the circumstances, and standing for the independence of the country.

Captain REDMOND: Was there not an accusation made at the time that the Irish Party had sold Ireland?

Mr. O'HIGGINS: There were many accusations and counter-accusations made at the time, but it is untrue to say that the issue was simply partition.

Mr. DAVIN: Yes, and when the Minister for Justice was interpreting the Treaty and giving his reasons for voting for it he said he voted for it as a stepping-stone towards the Republic. It was not a stepping-stone to a republic of the Twenty-six Counties. Does he deny that?

Mr. O'HIGGINS: I deny many things.

Mr. DAVIN: I suppose he cannot deny what is in this book. I rather enjoy interruptions, but I did not interrupt the President; I listened most attentively to his statement. If he thinks fit to ask me a fair question I am prepared to answer him. [1700] The attitude of the Ministers is, generally speaking, that of persons in a police court who can cross-examine prisoners in the dock charged with some offence. On this occasion it is they who are in the dock, and we who are in the position of cross-examiners. In this “Handbook of the Ulster Question,” which has the hall-mark of Governmental authority, on the question of partition, it is stated:—

In actual fact, partition has never been a policy, but merely a makeshift. It has never been put forward by any party on its merits, or as a satisfactory solution of the real problem, but as a temporary expedient, by which pressing difficulties and dangers might be averted, and opportunity given for a real settlement in the future. We have to describe, not the deliberate adoption of a clear-cut policy, but rather how, in the face of a difficult situation and encumbered by mistakes, men gradually drifted into the acceptance of a solution which was desired by none, and which a few years previously had been universally regarded as both ludicrous and intolerable.

To-day the Government say they always intended that the country should be permanently partitioned, but the President took very good care that he did not make that clear to his constituents in 1923. The Treaty of 1921 was registered with the League of Nations for the sole reason, as far as I can understand, of protecting the rights of the minority in the Six Counties. I want to know from the President whether it is proposed to register this Treaty with the League of Nations if the members of the Oireachtas are foolish enough to pass it. If it is proposed to do that, for what purpose will it be done? Deputy Mrs. Collins-O'Driscoll made the most extraordinary contribution to this debate of any Deputy, and I say so with the greatest respect. She said that a thousand arguments could be advanced in favour of the Agreement. Notwithstanding that, she did not advance one single arguments in support of it. She also said: “Common sense has justified this Treaty in advance.” I do not know [1701] whether she meant that it could be justified before it was signed by the three representatives in London.

Mrs. COLLINS-O'DRISCOLL: On a point of explanation. My speech was the shortest and, I think, the plainest of those delivered and I make no apology for it. I said that commonsense has justified it and I still say the same thing.

Mr. DAVIN: Of course I realise now that the commonsense which is supposed to be supporting this Agreement is the commonsense of the editors of our Irish newspapers, but it was not always acceptable to those sitting on the Government benches. I am prepared to go to any reasonable length to support any proposal which would mean a better understanding between the people of the North and the South, but if sacrifices have to be made, and if people have to compromise on questions of principle, I would much prefer to be a party to an agreement which would bring about unity within the Twenty-six Counties and with the Nationalists in the North, than an agreement such as this, which cannot bring about permanent unity in the country.

Deputy Myles gave away the whole case this evening when he said it was the Customs barrier that was the real cause of the irritation between North and South. That is a very important point, because I believe that even with this Agreement there cannot be any real approach to friendship while the Customs barrier exists, and it is the removal of the Customs barrier as a condition of agreement that the Free State will find itself up against if it becomes a party to this Agreement. Any business man will tell you that with railways running in and out at sixteen different points along the Border line, and the irritation that is caused by the Customs barrier on the Boundary, no agreement, no matter how well worded, will bring about a real approach to friendship until these things are removed.

Mr. GOREY: Grass will be growing on the railways in a few years.

Mr. DAVIN: It will be a bad day for [1702] the Government of the time if that ever comes about. I do not wish to stress the point as to the usefulness of the Council of Ireland for bringing about a solution of the railway problem, but I do say that the Council of Ireland provided a link for dealing with that matter. I am not as competent to speak on the position of the minority in the North as Deputy Baxter and other Deputies who have closer associations with the people there, but I am aware of hundreds of men, railwaymen included, who were driven out of the North during the days of the pogroms and who got no compensation for being deprived of their employment, while others got no compensation for the loss of their property. When making this Agreement with Sir James Craig the Free State representatives, before shaking hands with him, should have asked him, as some proof of his friendship, to make some reasonable provision for people of that kind. I am prepared to give the Minister for Justice credit for being quite keen on that, but I do not see how he could back any agreement of this kind which does not include any provision for the protection of the Nationalists in Northern Ireland, who are left to their fate so far as the future is concerned.

I have several letters here regarding recent cases of hardship and ill-treatment of Northern citizens. One has reference to a Catholic clergyman in Tyrone who applied in August last for permission to use a gun for shooting on his own land. He was told that if he joined the B. Specials he would get a permit to use his gun on his own land. I can also quote another case in the Co. Tyrone where there was a vacancy for a school attendance officer in a district where the population was 90 per cent. Catholic. There were two Catholic applicants for the position, but a B. Special was appointed. These cases illustrate the position of affairs as recently as August last, and one could go on quoting cases of the kind at great length.

Mr. WILSON: What about the provision in the Compulsory School Attendance Bill here?

[1703] Mr. DAVIN: I am not discussing the School Attendance Bill.

Mr. WILSON: Is it not the Civic Guard?

Mr. DAVIN: When this Agreement was being discussed with the British signatories did the President, or the Minister for Justice, or the Minister for Finance, ask for any reasonable provision for the protection of the minority in the North? Did they ask for the reintroduction of proportional representation so as to give a fair share of representation to the minority on the local bodies? If they did put up that proposal, was it refused? If those in control in the North had the broad-minded outlook of men like Deputy Cooper I would be prepared to entrust the minority to them in the belief that they would receive reasonable and fair treatment. But every Deputy who knows anything about the North of Ireland knows that those in control there are not of the same type as Deputy Cooper. I ask Deputy Cooper, and I ask the representatives of Trinity College, including Deputy Thrift, who has great influence amongst his own people in the South, if a proposal were put up to Sir James Craig by the present Government to re-introduce proportional representation would they support such a proposal? That would be the best proof of their sincerity in the matter.

Deputy Daly, who represents a county from which some of the ablest men come, said we could go on discussing this matter for three weeks. I approach this matter from the point of view of what my constituents would be likely to do if they were asked to agree to the permanent partition of the country. The issue has already been put to them. The Minister for Agriculture asserted that we were not speaking for our constituents. I am in fairly close touch with my constituents, and if it is a question of the votes given at the last election I can say that I speak for nearly three times the number of people that Deputy Egan can speak for. I am prepared to go back to my constituents and stand over the vote I am going to give in this matter, believing in my heart, in view of previous decisions in the matter, that the [1704] majority of my constituents would not support a measure which means the permanent mutilation of the country.

Mr. ESMONDE: I would not have ventured to have wasted the time of the Dáil by expressing my views on this Bill had not the right of Deputies to express their views been challenged by Deputy Gorey and by a certain section of the Press. Deputy Gorey suggested, at least I think that was the gist of his remark, that there should be a closure put upon the debate, after he himself had expressed his opinion.

Mr. GOREY: The Deputy is rather exaggerating the position. At the end of three days I think it is nearly time.

Mr. ESMONDE: I understand he gave as an excuse that he was representing a Party and therefore had the right to be heard. At least four other members of his Party have addressed the Dáil and all I can say is that I hope the unity in the Party which Deputy Gorey represents is not to be taken as a model for a future united Ireland. As to my personal position in this matter, I will certainly vote against the Bill because I am not satisfied with the explanations which the Executive Council have given that this is not a Bill for permanent partition.

I do not know what exactly the attitude of the Executive Council is towards the general principle of partition. There have been varying statements from time to time. I do not know if I am right in saying that the attitude of the Executive Council towards partition is one of “protesting acquiescence.” I do not know whether that is their attitude, because they have given various expressions of opinion. At any rate, as far as I can see, the Bill is one of permanent partition and, consequently, I cannot, in conscience, vote in favour of it, or do otherwise than oppose it.

A second matter which has been fully dwelt upon by other Deputies is the apparent betrayal of the Catholics of the North into the hands of their persecutors. It is, I think, a remarkable incident during the Holy Year that the President should seize upon this time to sell into slavery so many hundreds [1705] of thousands of his co-religionists. I happened to be at Geneva at the time of the last Assembly of the League of Nations and it was freely rumoured in the Press of the Continent that the Free State intended to take steps for the international protection of the minority in the North-East. I foolishly took upon myself to confirm those rumours. I was grievously mistaken.

There are various items in this Bill which, presumably, will come up for discussion on the Committee Stage, but which I think I am entitled to refer to here, because the cumulative effect of these provisions has a detrimental bearing upon the status of this country. In the first place, I notice that the Treaty, which was registered at the League of Nations as a Treaty, is referred to not as a Treaty but as “Articles of Agreement for a Treaty.” That was a phrase which was invented by Mr. Lionel Curtis, as I understand, in view of the fact that the document would not become a Treaty until it had become ratified by the Dáil and by the British Government. The fact that a Treaty was being made was recognised by the British Government. After the ratification of these Articles of Agreement, I can see no reason why this term should be preserved as it is. The Treaty was registered at the League of Nations as a Treaty and not as “Articles of Agreement for a Treaty.”

A second legal point which I think is to the detriment of the legal position of the country is where it is stated that the Treaty was given the force of law by an Act of the British Parliament. That is a statement which I certainly cannot subscribe to. I maintain that the Treaty was given the force of law in this country at any rate, by an Act of Dáil Eireann.

There is a further point in connection with the actual form of this Agreement and that is the signatures of Sir James Craig and Mr. Charles H. Blackmore. By their signatures to that Agreement it would seem that we have recognised, at any rate, to a certain extent, their co-equality with this State. I do not see what right they had to sign that document particularly in view of the fact that they have incurred no liabilities whatever. According to this [1706] Agreement certain liabilities are incurred by the Free State. Certain liabilities are incurred by the British Government, but there is no liability, under this document, incurred by the Government of Northern Ireland. For that reason, I see no reason why it should have been signed by the representatives of that administration.

Deputy Davin has asked the President whether this instrument is to be registered at the League of Nations. I wonder could we hope that, at any rate, the President or some member of the Executive Council would inform us definitely, before this debate concludes, as to whether that is their intention. I would point out that they are under an obligation, a direct and unequivocal obligation, to do so according to Article XVIII. of the Covenant of the League of Nations. Further more, I would like to point out that if this Instrument is not so registered it will not be binding upon this State, as according to the terms of Article XVIII. of the Covenant of the League of Nations “no Treaty or international engagement shall be binding until so registered.” I hope, before the end of the debate, at any rate, that that matter will be made clear.

The financial aspects of this transaction have been fully dealt with by preceding speakers. All I would like to say is this. That I am a supporter of the Shannon scheme. I am of opinion that the Shannon scheme could be financed adequately and brought to a successful conclusion without making the sacrifices which are involved in this Agreement.

A lot has been spoken about an alternative policy. I think there is some misconception. It is useless to formulate an alternative policy unless there is an alternative administration to carry that policy out. Assuming, at the moment, that there was in the Dáil an alternative Executive, there are certain matters which I think have become fairly clear during the speeches of those who are opposed to this Agreement. Deputy Johnson when asked for his alternative policy stated as I understand it from the Press—I was not in the House at the time—that it was “the Treaty and the whole Treaty.”

[1707] Mr. JOHNSON: I said it was the President's policy a little time ago— “the Treaty, the whole Treaty and nothing but the Treaty.”

Mr. ESMONDE: Perhaps that might be amplified, particularly, when we remember that members of the Executive Council have stated that the only result of this Bill, if rejected, would be that we would be placed in the position we were in a couple of weeks ago. That is the sum total of the only result that would accrue from the rejection of this measure. As I understand from the speeches in opposition to this measure, the alternative policy suggested was that this House should continue to stand by, as Deputy Johnson said, “the whole Treaty and nothing but the Treaty.” It was laid down in the Treaty that the Boundary between the area of the jurisdiction of this Parliament and that portion of the Irish Free State which is still retained under the authority of the Imperial Parliament in Westminster should be settled according to the wishes of the inhabitants. A report is alleged to have been drawn up by Judge Feetham and it has been alleged that, at any rate some weeks ago, in the opinion of Dr. MacNeill, that report was not in conformity with the Terms of Reference under which the Commission was set up. It is well known from established practice in connection with Boundary Commissions, of which there have been many hundreds in the last century, and arbitral tribunals, that any award which is not in conformity with the Terms of Reference has no legal or binding force whatever, and, according to my interpretation, and in my view, either the Feetham Award was in conformity with the wishes of the inhabitants or else it had no binding force whatever. I think that is the attitude which should have been adopted by the Executive Council and that is the attitude which in my opinion, is the only one which would be in conformity with the requirements and the dignity of the nation. If, by some curious change of circumstances, we found ourselves in the position that this Agreement was rejected and that in this House a new Executive came into being, it would be in a strong position to say that the full terms of the [1708] Treaty be carried out and that either the Boundary was settled according to the wishes of the inhabitants or else that the award be declared as we have a right to have it declared by international sanction to be devoid of any judicial effect whatever. The Government have produced a settlement and have stated that it is the best they could do in the circumstances.

It must be remembered that the Government, in the course of a stormy period through which they have gone, have had many commitments, have had many dealings with the British Government. They have become, so to speak, deeply involved in all kinds of transactions during the last four years. They stood by the Treaty, they committed a crime which many good Irishmen have committed before them, they committed the crime of behaving like honourable men when dealing with quibblers. They did all the dirty work for carrying out the Treaty. The Government and this Dáil stood by every Article of the Treaty during periods in which it was very difficult to do so. Because they stood by the Treaty they saw the whole economic life of the country torn to pieces. They saw their own homes destroyed, their relatives murdered and their leaders shot down like dogs. When they did all the dirty work, the President stated that he was brave enough to trust the British Government and the Vice-President stated that he believed that in this particular Article of the Treaty— Article XII.—the British Government would give us a square deal. When this Government and this Dáil had done all the unpleasant work in carrying out the Treaty, had done all the dirty work, did they get a square deal? I doubt if the Vice-President would say that they did. And yet we find in this document statements about conditions of amity and concord and the spirit that has grown up in recent years. As I have said, the Government has been deeply committed to this policy, and in my opinion, the cause of the evil, the cause of the failure of that policy, is due to a grave lack of machinery in the administration of the country. I hold I am entitled to refer to this matter, as it has not been referred [1709] to by any other Deputy. There was no department of State in Government Buildings whose sole business it was to deal with our relations with Great Britain, to watch over the Treaty and to see that every part of the Treaty was interpreted according to our view. On the contrary, there was chaos. Every department of State was practically dealing with Great Britain on its own. There was no control and no co-ordination of policy in this respect. There was no attempt to watch our rights under the Treaty and to see that in every instance our rights were upheld. It was everybody's duty and it was nobody's duty to see that the Treaty was carried out and, for that reason, the Treaty has not been carried out. I myself endeavoured to point out to the Government and to the Government Party this grave defect, as I thought, in their administration.

Perhaps my representations were not made in the proper manner or with sufficient persistency; at all events I fear they were received somewhat coldly. The only thanks, as far as I can see, that I got, was the suggestion that there were some personal motives in the objections which I brought under notice. I am satisfied that if in the Government administration there had been some department to co-ordinate and to control and to watch over our relations with Great Britain, the things which have happened would not have happened. After all, our relations with Great Britain are the most important things which this country has to consider, not only from the political, but from the financial and commercial and agricultural points of view. Yet, there was no Department of State to look after these matters, there was no coordination and there was no attempt at control, so far as our relations with that country were concerned. The result is that the Treaty has been interpreted, wherever possible, in a manner contrary to what we expected.

When I talk about an alternative policy or an alternative Government, it is, I think, the opinion of this Assembly that, at present, with the Assembly constituted as it is, there is not an alternative Government which the Dáil would accept. I would like to [1710] ask who is responsible for the fact that this is only a one-horse show? Who is responsible for the fact that we are not a healthy country with alternative Governments, so that if one Government makes a mistake the other Government can step into its place and clear up the mess? Who is responsible for that? There is only one Party in this country responsible for that and that is the Republican Party. The Republican Party has allowed itself to be fooled by the British oath. It has allowed the whole country to be fooled by the oath of allegiance. I heard, the day before yesterday, the President of the Executive Council referred to in connection with this Agreement, which I think is a very shameful Agreement, as Pontius Pilate. But what about the forty-seven other Pontius Pilates who are outside this House and who are doing nothing to prevent the partition of this country?

The PRESIDENT: They passed a resolution.

Mr. ESMONDE: I think it is high time that somebody in this House should say something in reference to the fact that this large body of elected representatives are failing to do their duty. What have they done since they were elected to this House? Since they were elected to this House they have done nothing. What are they doing? Nothing. What do their leaders propose they should do in the future? Nothing. And yet the Irish people have elected forty-seven representatives to do—precisely, nothing. As has often been said, “there is a tide in the affairs of men,” and, to the average intelligence, as far as the fortunes of that political party—which one must respect because of the fact that it represents, to a large extent, the extreme national element in the country—are concerned, that tide is here at the present moment. The question is: will they miss it? We are faced by the fact that between forty and fifty representatives of the people, able-bodied men, stand to-day terrorised and paralysed by one old woman. They are terrorised and paralysed by one lady who, as all Ireland knows, and as all America knows, is not only saturated, but preserved [1711] and pickled in the vinegar of her own self-righteousness. Before the terror of her tongue, forty or fifty able-bodied representatives of the Irish people tremble and obey. I wonder if there is one man amongst them with sufficient courage to cast his vote and take his part in trying to prevent the partition of this country?

Mr. CONLAN: What would we do if she came in here?

Mr. ESMONDE: If there be one man in that Party who is willing to take his responsibilities, who is willing to realise that they have been fooled by the British Government on this matter of the oath and that the only people who benefit by their abstention are the enemies of Ireland, if there is one man amongst them who is willing to come in and do his part, I am convinced that the people of Ireland as a whole would applaud his action irrespective of whether they are in favour of this Agreement or not. If there is not one man amongst them who is willing to do his duty in this crisis, all I can say is that history will condemn the whole Republican Party as having failed in the hour of their country's need.

Sitting suspended at 6.30 p.m. and resumed at 7.30 p.m.,

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE in the Chair.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: There is a Deputy in this House who has raised himself to a position which perhaps represents the height of happiness attainable by a certain mentality—that of being able to look upon the past with calmness and upon his fellow-creatures with condescension. I am referring to Deputy Johnson. The Deputy came into this House in December, 1922, and on behalf of his Party made a statement with regard to the oath which had to be taken. The Deputy recently made a statement with regard to the Treaty, that he had not anything to do with the making of it, and to a certain extent washed his hands of it. The Deputy in September, 1923, came before this House and, again on behalf of his Party, being somewhat annoyed with the result of the recent elections, threw back upon the electors [1712] the responsibility for a certain action which he announced he was to take. On that occasion he phrased it—that his Party regarded the recent elections as a sign that he and his Party should not interfere in certain matters—in what are described as higher politics.

Mr. JOHNSON: Will the Minister read the quotation?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: I can get the quotation with a little trouble.

Mr. JOHNSON: Will the Minister allow me to correct him? He is going to lead the Dáil into a misapprehension. I said nothing about higher politics. I dealt with a certain line of action which had been taken and which we had been denounced for taking. We received no thanks for taking that action. One side denounced us and from the other side we received no thanks. We have consistently maintained the attitude we announced at that stage.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: That was the negative side—I accept it as now put. But one other thing was said, that they would confine themselves to matters of social and economic interest. They have broken away from that attitude now. The Deputy and his Party have broken away from that attitude, and it is remarkable, in looking around this House, and viewing how it is likely to be divided on this question, to see that we get a Deputy here and a Deputy there and a Deputy from any Party in the House, but there is only one Party which, as a Party, is voting against this Agreement. Why is that? May I indicate a reason? Speaking in Kilkenny some time ago Deputy Johnson stated—I was held up on this quotation the other night and I do not pretend to quote it accurately—that he would use every Constitutional means to get rid of the present Government.

Mr. JOHNSON: Every means within reason.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: And an ex-Deputy of the House, on the platform with him, stated that he could foresee that the Boundary crux would bring about a very difficult situation and that [1713] would be Labour's opportunity. I suggest to the Dáil that what is happening is that the conflict of the Shannon is being fought out by the Labour Party on the matter of the Boundary.

Mr. MORRISSEY: Wrong.

Mr. T. O'CONNELL: Absolute nonsense.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: The Labour Party is the only solid party in the House against this Agreement. It is the Party whose leader declared on the subject of the Shannon scheme that they were going to take every means to bring the life of the present Government to an end, and an ex-Deputy of that Party stated that this would be Labour's opportunity——

Mr. JOHNSON: We did not expect the Government to be such dunderheads.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: You did not expect what?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: The Deputy has gone far enough.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: The Deputy has now got his chance and he and his thirteen supporters are going to go as a compact body into the Division Lobbies against us.

Mr. MORRISSEY: Will the Minister quote what his own ex-Deputies stated?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: They have not stated anything about fighting one case under the guise of another. That is what is happening here.

Mr. O'CONNELL: That is not true.

Mr. MORRISSEY: It is not true, and the Minister knows it is not true.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: I take the two phrases used, which are not denied, and I fit them to the present situation.

Mr. JOHNSON: You are quite welcome.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: I put it to the intelligence of the House as to whether that is a distortion of what was said or whether what was said now fits the facts as we have them. I have another proof. It is quite easy to understand when Deputy Johnson speaks on a matter in this House whether he is really speaking with his heart in opposition [1714] or whether it is by way of formal protest. I wonder if anybody listening to him on Tuesday would say that his heart was definitely in the protest which he was ostensibly making against the Boundary situation. He spoke at length and dealt at length with one item —the Council of Ireland—he played with it and toyed with it and fondled it, and when he had put it away it was with reluctance. His whole attitude brought to my mind the phrase used by the head of a house, who, annoyed at the time being spent at his departure by a suitor for his daughter, went out to investigate, and on his return said that he had happened in upon a leave-taking, and that he did not believe such a simple matter could be turned into so complicated and symbolic a ceremony. I wonder have we got the leave-taking of Deputy Johnson and the Council of Ireland?

Mr. JOHNSON: Not yet.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Is he still a wooer?

Mr. JOHNSON: Yes.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: With an irritant as a way to bringing unity to this country. It has been stated by many Deputies that if a vote is taken on this matter it will be for permanent disunion in the country.

Mr. O'CONNELL: Permanent partition in the country.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Yes, permanent partition, with no advertence to the fact that there has been partition since —I do not care exactly whether it was 1914, 1916, 1920 or 1921, but partition of some sort there was. You cannot say that it was not partition to have a line in a certain place, and it is partition to have a line in another place. As long as there is a Boundary line at all there is partition. We are told that it was never permanent up to this, because we always had the Council of Ireland. Deputy Johnson said in August last year that he really had no great faith in the Council of Ireland, that he regarded it as an irritant——

Mr. JOHNSON: Would the Minister quote the words?

[1715] Mr. McGILLIGAN: The Deputy said: “I have no particular faith in the Council of Ireland as contemplated by the Treaty with its composition according to the Act of 1920.”

Mr. JOHNSON: Hear, hear.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: He finished with regard to it: “Surely when you are going to deal with any new arrangements or any proposed means of conciliation or conference, it would be very much more powerful to have that in your possession as a bargaining instrument than to have it thrown away.” And last night he applied the word “irritant” to it.

Mr. JOHNSON: The Minister applied it and I accepted it.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: There is considerable doubt now as to who applied that phrase. Deputy Professor Magennis certainly used it, though when that was stated before he contradicted it and said “No; he accepted the President's phrase.” I say distinctly that he used it himself. Deputy Johnson has accepted the phrase and he himself said it would be interference. Permanent partition is to be saved by something which is an irritant and an interference, something which has to deal with the fisheries, with the railways and with the contagious diseases of animals, in so far as these three things apply to Northern Ireland. And by wiping out that irritant, by trying to bring two peoples closely together, we make the difference between partition and permanent partition. That, I presume, is the contention. It cannot be denied that there was partition before this, and the only change is with regard to the Council of Ireland. Is that the case for permanent partition? The Labour Deputies have used that phrase.

Mr. O'CONNELL: That was not the Minister for Justice's case when he wrote his article in the “Daily Express.”

Mr. McGILLIGAN: I am speaking about the debate here. If there is any apposite quotation, let it be given to me. I cannot keep all the quotations used here or elsewhere in my mind. This phrase about permanent partition [1716] has been used by the Labour Deputies and by Deputy Baxter and by everybody who spoke on this matter.

Mr. MORRISSEY: Have not the Minister's colleagues stated time and again in connection with the question of partition that the Boundary Commission had reported that the area under the jurisdiction of the Northern Government would be so restricted as to result in partition being wiped out altogether?

The PRESIDENT: I, for one, never made that statement. I want to see where that statement was made, and I want to know where it has been quoted against me.

Mr. T. O'CONNELL: Did the late General Collins ever make it?

The PRESIDENT: That will do now. I have given you my answer.

Mr. BLYTHE: I may say that I have frequently stated the opposite.

Mr. JOHNSON: Did you state it in Clones?

Mr. BLYTHE: I did state it at Clones and all over Co. Monaghan.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: I would ask Deputies to avoid interrupting.

Mr. MORRISSEY: Does the Government now deny that they led the people to believe that would be the case?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: If I may speak for the Government in this matter, I have no hesitation in saying that I do certainly deny it.

Mr. MORRISSEY: As regards the Minister for Industry and Commerce, I do not believe that he made the statement.

The PRESIDENT: You were not able to find out or point to anything contained in the speeches made during the Treaty debates, and I am sure you read the whole of them.

Mr. MORRISSEY: Not one.

The PRESIDENT: You have a clerk to do it.

Mr. O'CONNELL: Did you read “The Path to Freedom”?

[1717] AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: I presume there is no objection to the Minister for Industry and Commerce resuming now.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Perhaps I may be permitted to point out to Deputy Morrissey one thing with regard to quotations, without admitting that the quotation he refers to was used at all or in any particular context. A lot has been made in this House of contentions, of arguments put up by Ministers, of hopes expressed by them and of likely results to come from certain things.

Mr. MORRISSEY: There were false hopes raised.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: All those things are to be accepted as judgments. That is the view taken of these things. Deputy Johnson stated, with regard to Article V., that if we cannot put up a counterclaim to balance the British claim of some £170,000,000, or if we believe that our claim will not work out in the event of the matter coming before an arbitrator, then he would have to make comments upon our veracity in the past. Our veracity in regard to what? Statements have been hurled by people in this country with regard to the amount of money likely to be paid under Article V., and the Minister for Finance denied them. If I were of the opinion that my words would have carried any weight in the matter, I should have denied those statements too. Is it a likely or a reasonable thing to expect that, simply for the sake of newspaper controversy, whoever was approaching this Article finally should go in tied hand and foot to a statement that we certainly owed at least three, four, or X millions to Britain?

There is no question of truthfulness or untruthfulness about these things. It would be as easy to question the truthfulness or the untruthfulness of barristers pleading in any case in which they are engaged. A man puts up his case and makes a contention. If we held that the Boundary Commission, dealing with the matter according to the terms of reference and the evidence presented to them, were likely to produce a certain result, and if that result does not come about, it does not [1718] weaken our contention and it is in no way any reflection upon the veracity of our statements.

There is another fallacy about this whole situation. People imagine that Deputy Dr. MacNeill could himself have decided the Boundary result, or that the Minister for Finance could have decided Article V. We are told what the Minister said; we are told about his contentions, and then it is assumed that because something else is signed now the Minister for Finance must have been untruthful or else he had not a proper case when he said something else. Deputy Johnson has stated that he will not concede that the Executive Council's inability to produce a counterclaim to the claim for £170,000,000 made by the British should excuse any payment under this Agreement that we are discussing. Who said that the Executive Council were not able to produce a counterclaim? I will receive offers of counterclaims now and those claims can be built up as high as you like. A sum of £3,000,000,000 has been mentioned. I will take that. But remember that what matters in the end is the result and not the counter-claim that any Executive Council, or any Minister, thinks is sufficient; the counter-claim will have to go before the arbitrator who finally will settle the matter. It does not entirely depend on what any Minister for Finance says, or what any Executive Council can put up by way of a counter-claim.

Deputy Johnson touched on some minor matters with regard to the Council of Ireland. He did not put this as a definite statement, but he suggested that what has been done in this Agreement might dispose of the contention which we have long been holding to with regard to the waters around the coast. He suggested that if this Agreement be passed that contention that the waters around the coast are ours goes by the board. I cannot see it in the Agreement. The Agreement states that the area of Northern Ireland shall for the future be the area set out in a particular section and sub-section of the Government of Ireland Act, 1920. This section has reference to six Parliamentary Counties only. That contention [1719] of ours may be right or wrong, but it is in no way weakened by the disappearance of the Council of Ireland.

Then there is the other contention that what we have done with regard to the Council of Ireland disposes of our claim that their powers cannot be added to, that the powers of the Northern Government cannot be added to without the consent of the Saorstát. In a sense there is a very definite recognition of that claim. Here are certain powers given, and given with our consent and only after our consent had been obtained. There may be weakness or there may be strength in our contention with regard to future powers; there may be restricted lines or specious lines of policy to be followed with regard to powers that are to be given. The contention that that was the case is not weakened by the handing over of certain powers to the Council of Ireland functioning through the Northern Government.

Mr. JOHNSON: Will the Minister deal with one point? Is there any change consequent upon this Agreement in the status of the Northern Government and the Northern Parliament?

Mr. BAXTER: I would like to ask the Minister when he is on the point whether the powers that have been handed over to the Northern Government now are powers that were partially in possession of the Government of the Saorstát? What would be the difference in the handing over of powers in the possession of the Government of Britain and Northern Ireland?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: That, I think, is an answer to Deputy Johnson; would the powers that are now reserved to Westminster, if handed over to Northern Ireland, imply a change of status. There is question of a restricted right to deal with three matters, and the suggestion that the giving of these three matters over would imply a change of status I deny.

Mr. JOHNSON: There are more than three powers in question. There are the reserved powers. Under the [1720] Act of 1920 there were very definitely restricted and certain reserved powers. Will the Minister say whether the acceptance of this Agreement is a renunciation of any authority from the Saorstát in respect to the North, or alters in any degree the status of Northern Ireland?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: I cannot say that I have completely caught that question, but may I put this as an answer?—All reserved powers are still reserved.

Mr. JOHNSON: Then Sir James Craig is wrong in his interpretation.

Mr. WILSON: Would the Minister explain whether the Northern Parliament would have powers to make a Treaty? There were powers reserved under the Council of Ireland. Have they the right to make a Treaty or to sign a document?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: The right to sign a document and the power to make a Treaty are quite different things. This document has not to be confirmed by the legislature of Northern Ireland. That is the main thing and that is what shows the powers. Deputy Baxter last night contended that we were throwing back certain people into the Six Counties, casting off certain people whom we rescued, and that we were turning the eyes of these people to Belfast and Westminster. He said that, having said in a sentence previously that no doubt there would emerge in ten or fifteen years' time a completely new political unit, the unit of Northern Ireland as a Dominion. The contradiction I see is this. The Deputy objects to turning people's eyes to Westminster— that is, the eyes of Belfast—and at the same time he objects to the political unit, Northern Ireland, becoming a Dominion. You cannot have it both ways. I, for one, would prefer to see Northern Ireland a Dominion with her eyes turned homewards, and away from Westminster.

Mr. BAXTER: Do you mean two Dominions—Northern Ireland and Saorstát Eireann?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Decidedly. Is [1721] that a thing to be regarded with surprise, particularly by a Deputy who objects to people's eyes being turned towards Westminster?

Mr. DAVIN: With two separate fiscal policies?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: I suggest that that is just the time when two fiscal policies are going to be resolved and when we might easily have one fiscal policy for the whole country.

Mr. DAVIN: We might.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: It is a hope. Nobody can express anything else but a hope with regard to that particular area. Deputy Johnson finished by referring to a message which he had received from Newry in which certain people there complained that they had been sold. I object to the metaphor, but since it has been used, may I put it this way: We never had the people of Newry to sell. Newry was never within our jurisdiction. Newry and the people there had certain rights reserved to them under Article XII., and these rights under Article XII. are now exhausted, with the exception perhaps of the only concrete suggestion put forward by any member of this House as an alternative, and that is the suggestion made by Deputy Murphy last night, followed by that of Deputy Esmonde to-night, that there may be a right of appeal to the League of Nations. So far as the bearings of Article XII. in regard to the Six Counties are concerned its powers were exhausted, with the exception of a possible right to appeal to the League of Nations, so that when people in Newry, or Deputies here, talk about casting off and selling people let them be very accurate as to the people to whom they refer. Let them be quite clear as to where the sale could possibly take place. We had no jurisdiction over the people of the Six Counties. We had hoped to get certain things from a certain article, but these hopes were disappointed, and the alternative was that means, if not of rescuing, at least of easing their situation had to be found, and we believe that we have found it here.

Deputy Professor Magennis spoke [1722] for a couple of hours the other night and displayed a most extraordinary facility in vituperation. As one member of the Executive Council I found myself accused of “incapacity,” “blundering,” “sinning grievously against the light,” “frightened and panic-stricken,” “adopting the methods of the cuttlefish,” “supine, careless and negligent,” “scuttling the ship,” “having wool pulled over my (apparently collective) eyes,” “inspired with colossal egotism,” “making use of cunning stratagems,” “having an egotism equal to my previous arrogance and audacity,” “having no special experience of affairs and no special capacity in default of that experience,” and—this coming from a democrat—“not being a person having any tradition of governing subject peoples,” and, finally, in a last outburst of frenetical fury, I was “suffering from chronic ineptitude.”

For a long time I wondered where this vocabulary could have been acquired. I believe I know now. I believe it is the fruits of Deputy Professor Magennis's communion with himself about himself—summarising all the comments which he himself would make and which he has heard a great many people make about his own career—a career void of any successful endeavour, not marked by any achievement, and only variegated by a very extreme blunder outside his ordinary blunders. I think the Dáil the other evening had an opportunity of seeing why this life of his has been spent so futilely, as it has been. They saw displayed considerable talent mixed up with a certain taint, a malady, a disorder, of egotism, which has certainly rendered all that the Professor set out to do ineffectual. I have known him for a long time. I have known him all the time as a vain man, and have known him most of the time as a futile man, but just how monumental his vanity was and how far-reaching his futility I did not know until the other evening.

Boil down his two hours' oration and it comes to this: the Executive Council made a grievous blunder, “sinned against the light”—the light shed by [1723] the Deputy himself. He wanted a certain resolution to be added to the Treaty (Confirmation of Supplemental Agreement) Bill, but that resolution of his was not accepted. That, he described as the first blunder of the Executive Council in this matter. Up to that point, he said, everything had gone well. There was no disputing that the Executive Council's handling of the matter up to that point was sound. They committed that blunder, and, strange as it may appear, Deputy Magennis voted for the Treaty (Confirmation of Supplemental Agreement) Bill. He voted for the first blunder committed by the Executive Council in this matter. That, with regard to one matter. A second point emerges from his speech. Deputy Professor Magennis was challenged to give any alternative to what is before the Dáil. He purported to give an alternative. I think he meant to give an alternative. He described himself as a professor of philosophy, used to exact thinking and precise language, and I think we might take his language as indicating what he intended, but the contradiciton of his last night showed that that was not the case. I can only reconcile that with his other statement to the effect that he is only a professor in his working hours, and that, consequently, exact thinking and precise language disappear when his working hours are over. The Deputy's only alternative was a Coalition Government, and he accurately envisaged the only circumstances in which he could see himself becoming a member of a Government —when a blindfolded man at the bottom of the stairs would grip the first persons who came within his grasp. The Professor would, I think, not be the person to elude that grip. What is this alternative Government to do? We have been recently challenged that we had no policy in this matter. That policy has been tabled; the position is clearly before us. I hope to recite later on, what Deputy Baxter calls the collective wisdom of the Dáil in regard to this alternative. Deputy Professor Magennis gave his alternative as another Government and [1724] counter-proposals. He said “They would have handled the Boundary situation and carried on until a General Election was possible.” That is the alternative—a Coalition Government. That is offered to you seriously by a precisian in thought and language as the alternative to what we have before us.

Deputy Baxter dealt at some length with the situation. I often fail to understand the Deputy. He has a certain impassivity of demeanour, and it is very hard to discover what lies behind it, but last night it was obvious what was below the surface. His mind was tortured and his heart had plumbed pretty well the deepest depth of human suffering because the unfortunate people of the North whom we were casting off were to be committed to excesses beside which the worst records of the Black and Tans was a bright page.

Mr. T. O'CONNELL: To be hewers of wood and drawers of water, as the President stated.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: We had cast these people off and it was our fault that they were to be hewers of wood and drawers of water.

Mr. BAXTER: You did not raise your voice against it.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: I did not raise my voice against it. That is the situation put up by Deputy Baxter—that is the kernel of his speech. You must imagine we had them in our power first before we could cast them off, and throw them back to these excesses and allow them to be bludgeoned and beaten. The Deputy also was conscious he had to put forward an alternative. The unfortunate state of the people in the North caused him anguish and worry. How are we to get them out of that state? Surely he says statesmanship is not so bankrupt that there is not some way of doing it. Later on he says: “Is it for one single Deputy to put forward counter proposals?”

Mr. BAXTER: I asked did you get any guarantees, and if you did get them I asked why you did not get them in writing and embodied in the Bill.

[1725] Mr. McGILLIGAN: A very pertinent question that could be put to Deputy Baxter as one Deputy throwing out proposals, is: How would you get the guarantees?

Mr. BAXTER: You were dealing with the people who could give them.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Therefore if you are dealing with the people who have things in their power, you can get everything.

Mr. BAXTER: It is your failure that you have not got them.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: It is admitted that they have not been got, and nothing has been signed with regard to them. As to a reduction of the armed forces in the Six Counties, or a review of sentences on prisoners, if we were asked had we anything in writing about that we could not say that we had. But we did speak about a spirit of concord, and when I used these words last night the Deputy objected to them.

Mr. BAXTER: I did not object.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: You objected to them coming from the mouth of the Minister in Belfast.

Mr. BAXTER: No.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: You said: “Mark the words ‘peace and concord.’ ” There is something horrible, I take it, about these two words. There is a spirit of concord that we founded on, and that spirit of concord has been seen in things that have happened in the last couple of days, things that were not mentioned in the Agreement.

Mr. BAXTER: Seen in the daily papers.

The PRESIDENT: Certainly.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: That is the only way. I think if you were to wait another month you would not see any signatures with regard to an agreement on these things, but that they are coming I have no doubt.

Mr. BAXTER: I hope so.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: The Deputy asked us to go before our Northern [1726] people and say to them: “Will you accept this?” That is not what we would have to say to them but, “Do you accept this, and if you do not what do you think should be done for you?” and the Deputy himself in speaking on behalf of these people, and certainly having their cause very much at heart was asked the alternative to this, and all he could say was that it was not for a Deputy to put forward counter proposals, but that statesmanship was not so bankrupt that it could not be done.

Mr. BAXTER: I would not have to make the apology that you and your co-Ministers have to make for the promise you made to these people and failed to carry out.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: I have already dealt with that. I made no statement or promise with regard to what would happen when the Boundary Commission functioned. If I had been impelled to make any statement on the Boundary Commission I should certainly have spoken on the same lines as others, that in setting up a Boundary Commission we agreed to do so owing to deputations from the North urging that it should be set up, and that we helped to set it up in the belief it was going to produce a verdict in accordance with the facts.

But if any person in the course of the proceedings said anything else, that they were not going to produce a verdict according to the facts, he would have been subject to criticism in this House for an attitude prejudicial to the findings. It must be remembered that Ministers and Deputies often speak here with a certain thing in prospect. They cannot make statements which would prejudice their case. They must always speak putting the best side of their case forward, and if any Deputy did otherwise he would not deserve to be returned to any deliberative assembly. Deputy Hogan dealt with the question of the moral taint resulting from the payment of this compensation money. That point has been very well explained, but it might bear repetition. The British Government cleared out of the 26 Counties. They took their forces with them, and passed the Treaty. An agreement was [1727] made with regard to how certain payments for damages were to be made, and they agreed to shoulder a certain liability in consideration of Article V. being in the Treaty. The other day we came to the revision of the Treaty in so far as it affected these two things. It had to be reviewed, and was under review, and being under review, this new consideration emerged, that Article V. was going to be abolished and the British said, and said quite naturally and legitimately, “If that be so, and if we are to continue to shoulder the responsibility we did shoulder in view of Article V. being of some benefit to us, the position will be that we will have left your country and paid you an indemnity for leaving it.” That does not seem reasonable under the circumstances, and I doubt if it would seem reasonable to any Deputy here that that should be the case. Hence we agreed to pay for certain damages.

Deputy BAXTER: Did Germany leave France and pay an indemnity for leaving it?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Can I go back to the Franco-Prussian war to answer the Deputy?

Mr. BAXTER: Go back to the European war.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Now we have an agreement here the terms of which have been completely discussed. I do not want to deal with it any more than I have done. A vote is to be taken to-night for or against this, and that vote cannot be cast blindly or irrespective of what is coming after this. A certain number of people have spoken in opposition to this Agreement, and Deputy Baxter was annoyed because we did not take the collective wisdom of the House. We have got a certain amount of the collective wisdom of the House since we came home; a certain number of people have spoken. I have been at some pains to find out their alternatives. Deputy Magennis suggested a Coalition Government. Deputy O'Connell made no contribution by way of alternative. Neither did Deputy Morrissey.

[1728] Mr. MORRISSEY: Answer the questions that I asked.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Deputy Corish said it was very hard to suggest an alternative.

Mr. CORISH: Yes; but go on. What did I say after that?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Well, I will hear it now.

Mr. CORISH: Not being in possession of the facts that the Executive Council had before they arrived at the Agreement in London, and we are not in possession of them yet——

The PRESIDENT: I will give them to you.

Mr. CORISH: It is nearly time you did.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: It is very hard for the Deputy to put up an alternative under these circumstances, but he is going to vote in a certain way. Deputy Davin wanted us to go back to the Craig-Collins Agreement, and he read out one term that seemed to be very material to him, that both Governments were to meet to devise means of coming together.

Mr. JOHNSON: No; but for maintaining the unity of Ireland. That is not exactly correct—for devising means for dealing with matters covering the whole of Ireland.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Deputy Davin is coming to his place—I shall ask him later. Deputy Lyons made no contribution. Deputy Hogan, of Clare, made no contribution as to an alternative. Deputy Davin, I say again, referred to the Craig-Collins Agreement, and insisted upon a particular part of it which stated that the two Governments should meet to devise means for something. What was it?

Mr. DAVIN: Do you remember the pact yourself?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: That there was such a pact?—yes.

Mr. DAVIN: Well, I will take the trouble to read it for you—“to endeavour [1729] to devise a more suitable system than the Council of Ireland for dealing with problems affecting all Ireland.”

Mr. McGILLIGAN: “To endeavour to devise a more suitable system.” That is the important part of it.

Mr. JOHNSON: No, all Ireland is the most important part of it.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: To endeavour to devise a more suitable means of dealing with all Ireland. And that is a concrete, serious suggestion, put up as better than what is here.

Mr. DAVIN: Yes.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: What is here is: “The two Governments are to meet from time to time to consider matters of common interest.” Well, I fail to see the great significance of the other formula. If that is all that Deputy Davin is voting on, that that is his main alternative to this, this and Article V. wiped out, with the present Boundary line stabilised, instead of the Feetham line, if we are to throw all that overboard simply because there is in the Craig-Collins pact something about Governments endeavouring to devise——

Mr. DAVIN: Which you are now repudiating?

Mr. CORISH: What is the Feetham line?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Deputy McCullough thought that statesmanship was not so bankrupt that an alternative solution could not be found. He believed that there were other alternatives which would have provided a solution, and he approached a little bit nearer the concrete when he said that “it would have been possible for the British Government to induce Sir James Craig to call the minority into a conference so as to ensure the minority's rights.” Deputy O'Maille and certain other Deputies vaguely sought to remove the Article in the Treaty which keeps certain Deputies out of this House. That, as an alternative, has no appeal to me. A certain situation was created by the failure of the Boundary Commission, by the failure of Article [1730] XII. to bring the assistance that we thought it would have brought to certain people in the North. That threw into glaring relief the uncertainty under another Article, and that uncertainty had to be met and disposed of. Now, if anything was to be brought home when a certain amount of Treaty revision was on, I hold it should be something the benefit of which would accrue to the whole community and not to that limited section which refused to acknowledge the wishes of the people. This financial consideration does come home to everybody in the country, and the taking out of the oath would have come home to a very limited section, and to a section that deserves no consideration at our hands. Deputy Johnson practically avoided saying anything. He said: “If we adopted the President's suggestion we might say ‘the Treaty, the whole Treaty, and nothing but the Treaty’ ”—no contribution on his own, a hypothetical contribution which, if we were to accept it, would be, to follow the President's statement, that we were to say, “the Treaty, the whole Treaty, and nothing but the Treaty.” What would that give you? Article XII., representing the Feetham line——

Mr. BAXTER: Will the Minister tell us what the Feetham line is? Is he trying to suggest that the Feetham line would give us 20,000 inhabitants and would take six or seven thousand from us?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: The Deputy has stated it as well as I know it. Does he accept that line? Would he accept it in that form? Deputy Corish refused to accept it when it was put up to him in an interruption. Deputy Baxter is silent.

Mr. BAXTER: I would accept it as better than what you have got.

Mr. O'HIGGINS: That is something definite.

The PRESIDENT: That is fair.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: The Deputy will accept a line which gives us a certain number of inhabitants and which takes away 7,000 from us. The [1731] Deputy is not fully conscious of the situation on the Boundary, much as he talked of it yesterday. The handling over of people who were under an unarmed police force so as to bring them under an armed police force would create a situation around the whole Border area that no one can see the end of.

Mr. BAXTER: The Minister tried to deny that statement yesterday when I made it. That is the position on the other side. The cat is out of the bag now.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: The Deputy described a certain state of affairs, and I denied it, and deny it still as being a correct description of what is happening all over the Six County area. He gave certain examples from the North, but was corrected afterwards, and asked did he mean the Border area. I denied nothing about the Border area, but whatever the situation in the Border area it would certainly be aggravated by the Feetham line, and the Treaty would give you Article XII. and an award that undoubtedly would be legal but that possibly could be contested in other ways.

Mr. JOHNSON: Will the Minister deal with this point? Time after time, at the time of the proposition about the Boundary, and since, Ministers—the Minister for Justice, for one—have spoken of a transfer from the Free State to Northern Ireland (notwithstanding the most recent development of Ministerial policy, the development before the last), that there had been contemplated in Ministerial circles a transfer of persons from the Free State into the North. Was that the case or was it not? And if it was the case has the Minister considered that they would have been in any better or in any worse position than these people that he is now speaking of, under the Feetham award?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Could the Deputy put that in disjointed questions? I cannot follow it.

Mr. JOHNSON: Was the Minister always against the transfer of any [1732] citizens from the Free State into Northern Ireland?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: I always contended that if the Terms of Reference of the Boundary Commission had been attended to none of our citizens could have been transferred. That was my contention.

Mr. JOHNSON: Was that the Executive Council's contention?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: Precisely.

Mr. JOHNSON: Will the Minister for Justice say that it was always his contention?

Mr. O'HIGGINS: I do not know what exactly the Deputy is driving at. When did I make any other contention?

Mr. JOHNSON: I am asking the Minister did he always contend that it was not possible under the terms of the Treaty in Article XII. to transfer citizens from the Saorstát into Northern Ireland.

Mr. O'HIGGINS: I have always contended it.

Mr. JOHNSON: I will show you differently.

Mr. O'HIGGINS: I have always said that if the interpretation we hoped for and believed in were given as terms of reference the question could never arise, apart entirely from its technical legality.

Mr. BAXTER: Might I ask the Vice-President when the Supplementary Bill was going through that he did not want to keep people contiguous to the border if they wanted to go?

Mr. O'HIGGINS: I did not. I said we did not want to bring in unwilling and reluctant citizens within our jurisdiction.

Mr. BAXTER: Or keep people unwilling to stay. Did he state that?

Mr. O'HIGGINS: Not having “Hansard” available I will not flatly contradict the Deputy, but I think the point I was making was that our claim was not a claim for territory as such, but that it was a claim that communities [1733] homogeneously or predominantly Nationalist would not be kept outside the jurisdiction of their choice.

Major COOPER: May I ask is this a debate or a cross-examination?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: In the discussion of claims the legitimate claim of the Minister for Industry and Commerce to address the Dáil is being neglected.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: The Treaty, the whole Treaty, and nothing but the Treaty. Some boundary result by the Boundary Commission—this or some other. Article V. to be threshed out later on and the Council of Ireland to be preserved. That is Deputy Johnson's alternative to this—that is, outside the one good contribution made by Deputy Murphy and followed by Deputy Esmonde, the next best thing to an alternative we have. It is a matter for simple calculation and for a balance of results. You see what now you can get under this if the Dáil likes to pass it. You have the contingencies of a boundary award under some form of a Boundary Commission, the contingency under Article V. and the safe keeping of Deputy Johnson's pet, the Council of Ireland and votes can be cast upon that. One result we have got from this debate is that we have got a peculiar lining up of forces. I see the whole Labour Party animated by the desire to fight out the Shannon Scheme on the Boundary question.

Mr. DAVIN: No.

Mr. CORISH: Are you proud of your own alliance on this matter?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: The Shannon Scheme is being fought out on the Boundary question and the Labour Party are going in on that. I do not say there are not other considerations, but that certainly is a consideration, and that is what is going to be voted on in part by members of the Labour Party——

Mr. MORRISSEY: We can settle that without a Boundary question. The Minister will find that out.

[1734] Mr. McGILLIGAN: A member or two of the Farmers' Party, and an ex-member or two of the Government Party.

Mr. BAXTER: What are their reasons? What are our reasons?

Mr. McGILLIGAN: I have failed to discover any reason from Deputy Baxter. I have discovered emotion and tears, but neither emotion nor tears are going to do the people inside the boundary any good. But we have the strange spectacle of the three new political bed-fellows, Deputy Magennis, Deputy Baxter and Deputy Johnson.

Mr. JOHNSON: University, Land and Labour.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: I wonder how they are going to dispose themselves for comfortable slumber in the near future? It is the old problem of the fox, the geese and the cabbages that have to be taken across the river. I cannot see Deputy Johnson and Deputy Baxter side by side, passing the night in comfort. I cannot even see Deputy Baxter sandwiched between Deputy Magennis and Deputy Johnson having a comfortable period. I will throw out a suggestion that may ensure them a good night. Let them put the Deputy Professor between, and when those on the outside get irritated with each other they can take it out of the Professor. I was going to suggest, as a final impropriety, that they might make up their camp in the Shelbourne Hotel, and that the lady to whom Deputy Esmonde referred to to-night might come along to tuck them in. That suggestion I have to withdraw.

Mr. JOHNSON: You need not. It is very welcome.

Mr. McGILLIGAN: The lady to whom Deputy Esmonde referred is anxious, not to tuck them in, but to get them out.

Mr. ALFRED BYRNE: I am satisfied that the House is very tired listening to speeches and I am not going to delay the House very long. I had hoped that I would be able to cast a vote without making any statement, but as a result of a vitriolic attack on [1735] two of my former colleagues of the Irish Party, made by a Deputy from Cork, misrepresenting the position, I find myself standing here to try and put right that Deputy and one or two others as to the position of the Irish Party in 1914. I was asked that question, and I say the position of the Irish Parliamentary Party, of which I was proud to be a loyal and faithful supporter, was that, in 1914, Mr. John Redmond and Mr. John Dillon refused partition in any shape or form for this country.

Mr. T. MURPHY: I do not like to intervene, but may I ask a question?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: If Deputy Byrne will give way, yes.

Mr. T. MURPHY: Will the Deputy confess that the reason why the negotiations I referred to broke down was because it was a question of whether it was four or six counties?

Mr. BYRNE: I will answer that, and I am glad the Deputy has given me an opportunity of referring to four counties. Before I go further, I wish to prove my statement, and I will take no less a person than the Prime Minister of England. Speaking on the Government of Ireland (Amending) Bill, in the House of Commons on the 20th July, 1914, the Prime Minister said:—

“By the indulgence of the House, before we proceed to the Orders of the Day, I should like to be permitted to make a very brief statement. I am authorised by the King to announce to the House that, in view of the grave situation which has arisen, he has thought it right to summon representatives of parties, both British and Irish, to a conference at Buckingham Palace, with the object of discussing outstanding issues in relation to the problem of Irish Government. Invitations have been issued by his Majesty to, and have been accepted by, two representatives of the Opposition, two representatives of the Ulster Unionist Party, two representatives of the Irish Nationalist Party, and two of His Majesty's Government. I am [1736] glad to add that at the King's suggestion, Mr. Speaker has consented to preside over the conference which, I hope, may begin its proceedings tomorrow. In the meantime, we shall not proceed to-day with the Second Reading of the Irish (Amending) Bill, but shall ask the House to deal with other Orders which appear upon the Paper.”

Mr. John Redmond stood up and said:—

“Perhaps I may be allowed just to say one word. I would like to say that my colleagues and myself have no responsibility for the policy of the calling of this Convention, and I do not think that I am called upon to express any opinion as to whether in the result it will prove useful or the contrary. The invitations to attend this conference came to my honourable friend the member for East Mayo and myself in the form of a command of the King, and as such, of course, we at once accepted it.”

That was on the 20th July. On the 24th July, under the title “The Government of Ireland Bill,” the Prime Minister, in the House of Commons, stood up and said:—

“I have to inform the House that the conference summoned by his Majesty the King held four meetings—on the 21st, 22nd, 23rd, and 24th July—and the possibility of defining an area for exclusion from the operations of the Government of Ireland Bill was considered, and the conference being unable to agree either in principle or in detail upon such an area it brought its meetings to a conclusion.”

Neither in Principle nor in detail did the Buckingham Palace Conference agree to the partition of this country.

Mr. T. MURPHY: Would the Deputy say something further about the negotiations?

Captain REDMOND: I must ask for some indulgence for my colleague, Deputy Byrne. I understand that last night Deputy Murphy addressed the House at considerable length, and I do not think he was interrupted. I think [1737] Deputy Byrne is entitled to some indulgence in this respect.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: Deputy Byrne is getting what he is entitled to.

Mr. BYRNE: I unhesitatingly say that had the country accepted Redmond's advice and allowed the constitutional policy to proceed that we would not be here to-night deciding on the partition of our country.

General MULCAHY: We would be all dead and gone.

Mr. BYRNE: Deputy Mulcahy says we would be all dead in Flanders.

Mr. T. MURPHY: Or in Westminster.

Mr. BYRNE: In proof of John Redmond's attitude and the attitude of the Irish Party, Deputy Davin has already made a statement from no less a person than the Governor-General of Ireland. At that time he was Mr. Timothy Healy, M.P., and Mr. Timothy Healy, writing his cool, deliberate judgment on the issue, wrote a letter to the “Irish Independent” on October 19th, 1921, in which he stated:—

“In 1914 Mr. Redmond and Mr. Dillon, at the Buckingham Palace conference with Messrs. Carson and Craig on the eve of the war, refused to purchase Home Rule by any such surrender. Yet, seven years later, Sinn Feiners are expected to crawl down to a tamer position than that of the dethroned Parliamentarians, and go forth to history as signatories to a Pact in Downing street which Mr. Redmond refused to make in a Royal Palace.”

In case someone might think that the Governor-General's opinion—I think it will be admitted it was an unbiased opinion because he had not the record of being very friendly with the Irish Party—counted for nothing, in February, 1921, the late Cardinal Lougue wrote:—

“Had there been a strong militant Irish Party of seventy or eighty members in the House of Commons. with the assistance they might get from other parties, Mr. Lloyd George [1738] and his colleagues could never have reduced this country to the lamentable condition in which we find it at present.”

What was responsible for the condition of the country? The men who raised that bogus catch-cry “Abstention”— General Mulcahy and a few others who said, “Abstain from Westminster and we will go to the Peace Conference with heads erect and bring back an Irish Republic.” What did they bring back? What did General Mulcahy bring back?

General MULCAHY: We brought back Deputy Byrne sitting in an Irish Parliament, representing an Irish constituency.

Mr. BYRNE: You brought back a divided Ireland—two Parliaments in a small island such as this, the country rent asunder, your industries crushed, and thousands of unemployed at our doors to-day.

General MULCAHY: Read William O'Brien on that matter.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: If Deputy Byrne would address me he would be less interrupted because I will not interrupt him.

Mr. BYRNE: John Redmond's policy was defeated and Sinn Feiners succeeded, and it is these people who have cursed and scarred Ireland with the canker of partition. They do not like to hear the truth of the past ten years' torture of this country. They applaud a man when he stands up and abuses the memory of John Redmond and attacks Joe Devlin.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: On that I wish to say that I was present in the Chair when Deputy Murphy spoke. Deputy Murphy did not abuse the memory of John Redmond.

Mr. CORISH: No one would.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: No Deputy in this House abused the memory of John Redmond, and as long as I have the honour to preside over this Dáil, I shall not allow anybody to abuse the memory of any dead man, and more particularly of any man who was [1739] a beloved leader of the Irish people. That did not happen. I did not like to interrupt Deputy Byrne when he began and said that a vitriolic attack was made yesterday evening on two of his former colleagues.

Mr. BYRNE: The words “Pontius Pilate” were used.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: No vitriolic attack was made on the memory of Mr. John Redmond in my hearing. An allusion was made to Mr. Devlin, who is a member of the Northern Parliament. It was a passing allusion. I did not stop the Deputy who made it, but I take this opportunity of saying that I do not approve of any allusion to a member of the Northern Parliament. I want to have that made absolutely clear. Speaking as the custodian of the honour of this Dáil, and representing every member of the Dáil, I repeat that no attack was made on the memory of Mr. Redmond—no attack whatever, and I would not have tolerated any such attack had it been attempted. I feel confident that no one would have attempted it.

Mr. T. MURPHY: May I say one word before Deputy Byrne resumes?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: Except in the way of personal explanation, I do not think that the Deputy will make things any better.

Mr. MURPHY: I did not complain yesterday when Deputy Byrne interrupted me. I never said anything in this House, or outside it, that I did not mean, and I hope Deputy Byrne can say the same.

Captain REDMOND: On a matter of personal explanation, may I say that this is exceedingly personal to me, and most disagreeable. I thank you, sir, for what you have said, and not only do I thank you, but I believe, sincerely, that you carried out, and always will carry out, the expressions that you have just mentioned, and as far as I am personally concerned, I have no complaint to make.

Mr. BYRNE: I personally am grateful, sir, for your announcement, and I [1740] am satisfied that no member of the House, unless in the heat of the moment, or probably to gain some Party advantage, would insult the memory of that former beloved leader of the Irish people.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: I want to say that that is a most unworthy sentence. I have been placed in this Chair as the custodian of the privileges of this House, and of the honour of its members. I appreciate what Deputy Redmond has said. We all do, but it is most unworthy of Deputy Byrne to say, after what I have said, that any Deputy would insult a dead man's memory for a party advantage, or in a moment of passion.

Mr. MURPHY: It is worthy of the Deputy who said it.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: The Deputy will not improve matters by these interruptions. The memory of John Redmond was not insulted, and there is no danger of any Deputy in this House in a moment of passion or for any other reason insulting it. That is a matter on which I cannot let Deputy Byrne proceed. I want that made absolutely clear, and it is most unworthy, and Deputy Byrne should withdraw the insinuation, that any Deputy would be guilty of such a thing.

Mr. BYRNE: I withdraw any statement that might mean that you were not watching, and protecting, the interests of those inside, but I am so used to listening to those slanders outside that I may have fallen into the statement that the slander was made inside—that is, the attack. I am satisfied to accept the explanation that no attack was made.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: Or that any attack would be made here. I do not like to continue this. As Deputy Redmond has said, it is most disagreeable. Deputy Byrne said nothing about me. He did say something about attacks by Deputies here. I am not responsible for Deputies outside, but I am responsible for Deputies inside. That Deputies here would insult a dead man's memory is a thing that should not be said.

[1741] Mr. BYRNE: I withdraw the statement that the attacks were made here, I withdraw it unreservedly. I know my duty to the Chair, and there is no man in this House would obey the Chair more readily than I would. Last night I heard the words “Pontius Pilate” used, and in connection with these words, two names were mentioned.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: What names were used in that connection? Let us hear them now?

Mr. BYRNE: Deputy Murphy, speaking last night, used in the one sentence the words “Pontius Pilate” in connection with the names of John Redmond and Joe Devlin.

Mr. MURPHY: I deny that absolutely.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: I was in the Chair, and I was listening, with the greatest possible attention, to Deputy Murphy, more particularly when he was verging on the topic Deputy Byrne speaks of. What has Deputy Murphy to say?

Mr. MURPHY: I deny absolutely I made any comparison between the late Mr. John Redmond, whom I certainly did not want to insult, even if I did differ from his policy in some respects, or used the name of Pontius Pilate in connection with John Redmond.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: I think not.

Captain REDMOND: I do not like to intrude in this matter, and I feel it much, and I appeal to Deputy Byrne and to my friend above the gangway, Deputy Murphy, to let the matter drop, and so far as I am concerned, with all respect to either of the Deputies, I do not think it will affect John Redmond's career or what was thought of him in the country. That is all I have to say about the matter.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: It is not a question of Deputy Byrne or Deputy Murphy. It is a question of what this House allowed to be said. I want to be [1742] clear that no statement that could by any manner of means be interpreted to be an insult to the memory of a dead man was made use of in this House. I want that made clear.

Mr. BYRNE: I accept the statement of the Deputy, and I also bow to your ruling, and I withdraw unreservedly. I was asked about the Irish Party's position and their policy in 1914 and again in 1916. I have given the announcement by the Prime Minister of England in 1914 to show that the Irish Party at no time agreed to partition. Deputy McCullough said that partition was born in Buckingham Palace and baptised in Belfast. Now, what are the facts? It is not a matter for face-saving, and we all ought to recognise the position we are in to-day. It is not a matter for face-saving for any Deputy in this House. There is a Boundary, and has been a Boundary since 1920, and every man who came into this House accepted the position that there was a Boundary. That Boundary was created, and the Orange Parliament was set up during the absence from Westminster of the Irish Parliamentary Party. When the abstention policy succeeded in 1918 Sir James Craig and his friends sought that golden opportunity, when there was no opposition, to establish a Parliament, and they succeeded in establishing the Parliament of the Six Counties in 1920 when the Irish Party had been removed from Westminster.

If anybody is to blame for the Boundary situation arising in this country, it is those who subscribed to and supported the agitation in 1918 to abstain from Westminster. When the Minister for Finance was making his speech I only had to shut my eyes to imagine I was back in Westminster hearing my friends asking the Opposition to give us a chance of proving to Ulster by good-will and good government that one Parliament for Ireland was a desirable thing. All the speeches made here during the last three days were almost copies of the speeches contained in the books before me made by John Redmond, but John Redmond was howled at for making those speeches, and Ministers have no right to come [1743] back from London posing as triumphant gladiators when they are just getting what John Redmond and his Party could have got without the shedding of a drop of blood, without the damage to property, without the loss of life. I do not find fault with the Government for taking it in the circumstances, but that is the feeling I have when I think of the destruction of the past ten years. What has it brought us? Nothing better than could have been got in 1914. Certainly it has given us our own Army. What does that mean only an expenditure of a couple of millions yearly.

MINISTER for DEFENCE (Mr. Hughes): It is worth it.

Mr. BYRNE: I am glad you think so.

Mr. HUGHES: The country thinks so.

Mr. BYRNE: I do not find fault with the Minister for thinking so in the circumstances.

General MULCAHY: Deputy Byrne thinks that the only place for an Irish army is on the battlefields of Europe.

Mr. BYRNE: I do not. I never subscribed to that doctrine, and I think the Deputy knows it well.

A DEPUTY: It was the doctrine of that Party.

Mr. BYRNE: Somebody is finding fault, and saying that it was the doctrine of that Party. I think I remember some of the Free State Ministers joining in congratulations to America for the part they played in the war, and also referring in glowing terms to the work done by our own. You cannot have it one way to-day and another way the next day when it suits you. You would like to have it both ways, I am satisfied. Many good Irishmen went out in the Great War, believing that they were doing the right thing for Ireland, and are you going to find fault with them because they followed their belief as you followed yours and made yours a failure?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: The Deputy [1744] is not addressing Deputy Mulcahy surely?

Mr. BYRNE: He continues to interrupt me, to try to make little points that do not arise, and I think it is only right that I should reply to him and draw attention to his part in Irish affairs for the past ten years.

Mr. O'DOHERTY: On a point of order, we are getting about tired of this.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: Deputy O'Doherty must sit down.

Mr. BYRNE: I believe in the appeal made by the Minister for Finance. I believe that it is by good-will, brotherly love, and by being good neighbours, as referred to by Deputy Cooper, that we can yet bring about peace in this country. It is only by good-will and brotherly love that we can do so. The same appeal was made by John Redmond and his followers in the Irish Party, and Deputies here lent themselves to a political campaign that eventually destroyed the friendly feeling which John Redmond was endeavouring to create in Ulster. The same cries of “No surrender,” and “Not an inch,” were made ten years ago. It was only this week that Ministers recognised the difficulties that responsible leaders in the past had to face. Our Government to-day is in the same position that the Irish Party were ten years ago. I think the appeal made by the Minister for Finance for good-will and brotherly love ought to get a chance. I would have supported the same appeal in Westminster had an opportunity arisen. In 1914 discussions were going on for the establishment of Home Rule in Ireland when the Great War broke out and shattered all our hopes. An agitation was raised by the lords and the gentry of England. Some very vicious speeches were made and letters written which I will not quote from.

Some form of guarantee is necessary in order that our people in the North may get fair play. Only a few weeks ago they were refused representation in the Senate when the election took place. The Government may have got [1745] some information which they have not made public. It is quite possible that the Government have some form of guarantee or some information that things will change in the North of Ireland. I hope they will change. Judging by the tone of the speeches made from the Government Benches it appears we have not got all the information. I did not leave my seat in this House for five minutes at a time since this debate started last Monday, and from the speeches made by the Ministers I would be led to believe that there was something kept back from the House. If it is good news, I do not see why the Government should keep it back. It would make the passage of this measure much easier.

I will give one further quotation that I forgot to mention. It shows the position of the Irish Party in 1914. The Prime Minister, speaking in March on a Resolution that was before the House, said:

“The principle is this: That to allay the apprehensions felt in Ulster there should be given to that province local option by areas, voted, it may be by a bare majority for exclusion, and if, and when that option is exercised, areas so excluded are to come in at the expiration of a defined term of years, a term so fixed that during its currency the electors of the United Kingdom will at least have twice the opportunity of determining whether or not that automatic exclusion is to stand.”

Again, I may be asked what happened in 1916.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: Really, this is hardly fair. The Deputy has told us what happened in 1914, and has spent much longer on this matter than anyone else. He could really afford to come to the Bill now.

Mr. COSGRAVE: Perhaps I could throw some oil on the troubled waters.

Mr. BYRNE: I will not take more than five minutes.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: Deputy Byrne must be allowed to conclude.

Captain REDMOND: On a point of order, is not Deputy Byrne as much entitled [1746] to speak for two and a half hours as other Deputies?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: That point does not arise at all.

Mr. BYRNE: I will not delay the House very much longer. I do not think that I ever kept the House for more than a quarter of an hour before. I may be busy at Question time as you, sir, stated, but I can assure Deputies that I seldom speak for more than a quarter of an hour. I do so to-night because of misrepresentation of the situation in the past. I have marked out a little paragraph dealing with the discussion on the Home Rule Bill— the Government of Ireland measure of 1914—to show the difficulties the Irish Party had to contend with:

“In consequence of information received by His Majesty's Government, it was decided to make certain movements of troops.”

That refers to the Curragh revolt. In spite of all that the Constitutional Party was still carrying on, as I claim, with success at Westminster. As far as partition is concerned I hope I have made it clear that the Irish Party were not responsible for it. The only thing they did agree to was exclusion of the Ulster counties for a period of six years, Ulster to remain under the British Parliament, the Irish people having full representation in that Parliament to see that no injustice would be done. At the end of six years Ulster was automatically to come into the Irish Parliament. Then the rebellion broke out in Dublin in 1916 and altered the whole position.

Mr. GOREY: I think it has been already suggested that we do not want history.

Mr. BYRNE: You have heard it for the last four days and you applauded it.

Mr. GOREY: I did not applaud it. I want to say that we accept everything that Deputy Byrne has said, and everything he is going to say.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: That is not a point of order.

[1747] Mr. GOREY: We do not want to hear the history of something that is irrelevant to the Bill.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: It is not a point of order. I am not sure how far history is relevant to this debate. A certain amount of history is.

Mr. BYRNE: One Deputy went back as far as Fionn Mac Cumhaill yesterday.

Mr. GOREY: I am sorry he did not stop there.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: I feel that I, at least, am entitled to be heard without interruption. I think Deputy Byrne might now come to the Bill. I am not referring to the question of time and I am not limiting the Deputy in that respect. I do think that the Deputy might now come to something which would appear to be relevant to the Bill.

Captain REDMOND: On a point of order, I am now going to raise a point of order, and it is this: on a Second Reading debate of a particular measure is the Deputy entitled to any time he chooses to discuss that measure, what has led up to that measure, the antecedents of that measure, and everything in and about that measure? Is there any rule whereby you, sir, acting in your capacity as Ceann Comhairle, can call him to order or curtail his discussion of that measure?

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: There are really two points of order in that question. I have answered one already. There is no time limit to a discussion on the Second Reading. There is considerable latitude allowed on Second Reading, but I am the judge of relevancy. There can be only one judge, and Deputy Byrne has exhausted his relevancy on one particular topic. I hope that is clear as a matter of order.

Mr. BYRNE: I can assure the Dáil it will not take me more than five minutes to conclude. I did not think I was going to speak so long, and but for the interruptions I would have concluded long ago. When the rebellion broke out in 1916 it upset all our hopes, and there was a hasty recall to Ireland. The late Cardinal Logue and the Ulster [1748] Bishops met in an hotel in Parnell Square to discuss the matter to see how exactly the position in which their people in Northern Ireland stood. That meeting decided that they would call a conference, and they selected delegates to the meeting, which was called for Belfast. The question was discussed there. John Redmond himself had agreed to accept whatever the Nationalists of the North thought best for themselves. By a majority of about 2 to 1—there were about six or seven hundred people at the conference—the people of Belfast, through these delegates, decided to remain out of the Home Rule Bill. That partition was not the making of the Irish Parliamentary Party. I am glad that I got the opportunity of putting myself and my colleagues, who served in another Parliament in the past, in the right position on this question. I am satisfied that the public will understand that I have only done that right thing to those of my colleagues who remained, to put the position plainly and to prevent their getting any further abuse in the country. I hope now that nobody in this House will attempt, for some face-saving purpose, to put the blame for partition on my former colleagues. I would not have been a friend and supporter of the late John Redmond if I did not express those views. We heard a good deal about the Locarno Pact recently and the Irish Pact, but the Locarno Pact and the Irish Pact would always have been the policy of the late John Redmond.

Mr. J. COSGRAVE: On this question of partition we have heard a good deal from Deputies on the responsibility of the Irish Parliamentary Party. I think that matter has been cleared up by the straightforward and clear manner in which Deputy Mulcahy dealt with the question, when he said that England, and England alone, is responsible for partition in Ireland, and will be responsible for it.

AINDRIU O LAIMHIN: Táim cinnte go bhfuilimíd uilig buidheach don Teachta atá tar éis labhairt, mar gheall ar an mhéid staire do thug sé dhúinn. Bhíomar ag déanamh dearmaid ar na míorbhailte a rinne an [1749] sean Pháirtí agus ar stáir na trioblóide atá i gceist anocht. Dubhairt an Teachta go raibh lucht an Pháirtí in aghaidh roinn na tíre seo——

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: Is dóigh liom gur feárr gan dul isteach 'san gceist sin arís.

TEACHTAI: Is feárr.

AINDRIU O LAIMHIN: B'fhéidir gur feárr í a fhágailt mar tá sí. Is é mo thuairim go dtuigeann lucht na Dála an cheist seo—ceist an teorann— agus go dtuigeann na daoiní taobh amuigh den Tigh seo an cheist chó maith. Táimíd ag cur síos ar an gceist seo agus shaoilfeá ón chainnt nach rabh aon teora ann go dtí anois. Bhí an teora ann sar a n-deárnadh an Connradh idir muinntir na hEireann agus muinntir Shasana breis agus cúig bliana ó shoin. Ní híad na daoine atá annseo anocht a rinne an teora. Bhí sí ann agus tá sí ann agus bheadh sí ann, is cuma faoi thoradh an Chomisiúin.

Rinneadh socrú ar an gceist seo seachtmhain ó shoin. Níor thaithn an socrú san liom agus is é mo bharramhail nár thaithn sé le lucht an Rialtais ach oiread. Tá a lán daoine taobh istigh den teorainn agus is beag atá siad-san sásta leis, acht caidé an bealach eile atá acu? Tá bealach amháin —bealach an tsocruighthe seo—againn agus má tá bealach níos feárr ag aoinne, níl le déanamh againn ach glacadh leis. Ins an Chonnradh a rinneadh cúig bliana ó shoin, bhí a lán nidhthe nar thaithn liom-sa. Bhíomar ag cur síos ar an gceist sin ar feadh tamaill fhada agus nuair nach rabh aon rogha againn do ghlacamar leis. Dá mba rud é go rabh socrú ní b'fheárr ar fagháil an t-am san, ghlacfainn leis, agus bhéinn in aghaidh an Chonnartha. Má tá aon Teachta san Dáil in-ánn bealach níos feárr ná an socrú so a theasbáint dom, beidh mé ar son an bhealaigh sin. Dubhairt Teachta éigin—ní chuimhin liom i gceart cé hé —go rabhamar uilig ar thaoibh an rúin ar an taobh so den Tigh, toise go rabh bainnt againn le Cumann-na-nGaedheal. Is cuma liom faoi'n gCumann sin. Tá bainnt ag gach Teachta le Cumann éigin chó maith [1750] linne. Má tá Teachta ar bith in ánn bealach níos feárr as an gcruadh-chás so a theasbáint dom, béad ar thaoibh an bhealaigh sin acht, muna bhfuil, cuideochaidh mé leis an rún so.

Dr. KEOGH: I have been asking myself whether I should continue this debate for the next hour and five minutes, but as members of the Government Party have informed you that they were getting tired of this repetition of argument, I have decided not to do so. Inside and outside the Dáil I have been asked what I was going to do in connection with this important question. I said outside on the Lobby what I am going to tell you now, that I have carefully studied the debate and that it is my intention to support the measure.

Mr. EVERETT: I desire to record the reasons why I object to the ratification of the Treaty. I observed from the Press that the President stated that it has sown the seeds of peace. I believe that you cannot sow the seeds of peace by this Agreement either in the North or in the South of Ireland. I will be charitable to the Government representatives, and I am not going to suggest that they sold the country. I am sorry that members from another Party suggested that they were traitors in the Labour Party, because they objected to this Agreement.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE: I do not think that was said; I do not remember it.

Mr. EVERETT: I believe if we had unity in the South we would have had a better agreement and General Collins' prophecy would have come true. I think that if the President and his colleagues had come back and pointed out to the people in this Chamber that the arbitrators had gone outside their Terms of Reference, there would have been a possibility of uniting the people of the South and uniting with the friends we have thrown to the wolves in the North. We would have got back the unity that prevailed in 1918, and we would have been able to defy the power and the might of England. I notice that the Minister for Justice stated on September 9th: “We will [1751] not agree and never would have agreed to the compulsory exclusion from our State of a large mass of the Nationalist population who desire to be included.” In December, a couple of months afterwards, the Minister for Justice stated:

Mr. O'HIGGINS: May I ask what the Deputy is quoting from?

Mr. EVERETT: I am quoting from an interview the Minister gave to the “Daily Express.”

Mr. O'HIGGINS: When?

Mr. EVERETT: On September 9th, 1924.

Mr. O'HIGGINS: A propagandist article in the “Daily Express”?

Mr. EVERETT: It is an interview given by the Minister for Justice to the correspondent of the “Daily Express.”

Mr. O'HIGGINS: Quite right.

Mr. EVERETT: During the week the Minister stated: “I will not stand for a repudiation of the Treaty and throw the people of the South into the melting pot.” He is prepared to throw the people in the North of Ireland into the melting pot, to be at the mercy of the Orangemen and the Freemason gang in the North of Ireland. The Minister for Industry and Commerce twitted us here on the people we have supporting us. Let him look at the support he is receiving and where it is coming from. It is coming from the men who denounced the Sinn Fein movement in 1916 and until the Free State was established. Now they are its most loyal supporters. I am not possessed of the slave mind. I take my teaching from the late General Collins when he stated that an Irishman's interpretation of the Treaty, from an Irishman's point of view, was superior to the Englishman's interpretation. I suggest that in Article V. there is a certain amount of vagueness. Deputy Professor O'Sullivan and another Minister stated that they were agreeing to pay £15,000,000 and £150,000 for the abolition of Article V. What is Article V.? I take this extract from a paper that supports the Government, “The Wexford People”:—

[1752] It is well to point out a fact which has been overlooked in regard to Article V. It provides that the financial relations between the Free State and Great Britain shall be decided by arbitrators who must be citizens of the British Commonwealth. Here the Free State holds the trump card. There is no provision made for the appointment of such arbitrators or for the method of delivering judgment if the arbitrators disagree. There is, therefore, nothing to prevent the Free State insisting that it should appoint the Chairman of the Arbitration Board and even insisting that all the arbitrators should be Irishmen.

Of course, England would not agree. That is where the point comes in. The Free State would then not be bound by that Commission. This Article V., as Lord Carson said, is eye-wash. There should be no necessity to come back and tell us that we would have to reduce the old age pension by 10 per cent. and refuse to give to people unemployed in the South the same donation that they were getting in the North, if we are in the position of giving £15,000,000 for the permanent dismemberment of our country. I think our friend, Deputy Major Myles, in speaking for the Treaty, advanced an argument as to why we should vote against this Agreement. To put it in a nutshell—take away the last remaining clause which the Treaty of 1921 gave by abolishing the Customs barrier. It was painful to listen to Deputy Mulcahy. He gave over our whole ideal of Irish Nationality when he suggested lock, stock and barrel the position of British Unionism and Ulster Carsonism. He stated that the whole idea was to get in British wealth and British capital.

General MULCAHY: Perhaps the Deputy would quote the passage.

Mr. EVERETT: I think if the Deputy will get the Official Reports he will see that he made a suggestion that has never been made by any conceivable Irish Nationalist leader—that we were practically enslaved, that we were depending upon British capitalists and British industry.

[1753] General MULCAHY: On a point of explanation, I want to say that I was drawing attention to the explanation given yesterday in the British House of Lords by one of the signatories of the Treaty of 1921 as to why he and his fellow-signatories to that Treaty insisted upon Article V. being put into the Treaty at that time, and the explanation was lest taxation in Ireland should be found to be at such a low level that it might tempt British capital and British industry to come into Ireland to the detriment of British Commerce, they would have that Article to squeeze money from us for the purpose of raising our taxation here and stopping that danger from the British point of view. The British objected to the possibility of Ireland being in the position financially that British capital and British factories might be tempted to flow into Ireland. It is not an idea of mine at all.

Mr. EVERETT: The official records will prove the statement made by Deputy Mulcahy.

General MULCAHY: They will.

Mr. EVERETT: I accepted the Treaty believing it was a steppingstone to complete freedom for Ireland. I understood that under Article XII. we were to get two more counties. I admit that we have, as I pointed out, been divided. At the same time, I am sorry that in the Dáil we hear Deputies speak who may believe they are doing right by voting for the permanent dismemberment of our country. I speak for myself on this matter. I would prefer to see us back again where we were previous to 1921, even if the last shilling was to go and the last man was to give up his life, rather than agree to the permanent dismemberment of our country and to leave our fellow-Catholics in the North at the mercy of the Orange Government. I would prefer to see Ireland poor but free than to see Ireland rich and enslaved.

Mr. HALL: I am not going to detain the Dáil very long, but I am something of the same mind as Deputy Everett on this matter. Having regard to all the sacrifices that have been made for [1754] the establishment of the present Treaty—that is not the Treaty that we are discussing at the moment, but the Treaty under which this Dáil is functioning—I think it is too bad that we are now about to dismantle ourselves of any honour and dignity that we possessed when we entered into the conflict with Great Britain in the years 1919, 1920 and 1921, that is, after the elections in 1918. Some of us, at all events, in the Dáil, if not all of us, have taken a certain amount of responsibility in that campaign. We shouldered that responsibility in the endeavour to bring about what was long sought by the Irish people, the complete independence of Ireland, and to have an Ireland one and indivisible.

At one stage in the history of our country, we found it necessary to agree to a truce with the former authority that controlled or endeavoured to control the destinies of our people. From that truce came the Treaty negotiations, sometimes carried on by an individual, and finally came the negotiations by a number of individuals. Then came the Treaty and its ratification by the Dáil. I had a certain amount of responsibility for the ratification of the Treaty and I exercised that responsibility to the best of my ability. I advised the men at that time who were hostile to the Articles of Agreement brought from London, to accept the statement made by our responsible leaders here, that it was freedom to acheive freedom and that the settlement then arrived at would ultimately lead to the complete union of Ireland, and that it would be disastrous for these men to take responsibility for civil war, or to assist in any way those who disagreed with the majority at that time. It took some considerable length of time to convince these men with whom I was associated and who were soldiers of the Irish Republican Army, that the policy I preached to them was the best for the country. With the exception of one battalion that was under my command at that time, all the men took my word. They showed that they believed that I conveyed to them the facts and that I conveyed to them what would be the ultimate results of [1755] the acceptance of the Treaty. But, sad to say, that view is not borne out by the facts before us now.

The Treaty, which was so much objected to by some of those men at that time, is now going to be brought down to that state that it is going to become more objectionable. Instead of this Treaty going to bring unity amongst Irishmen and going to establish a new state of stability and citizenship within the State, it is my considered opinion that it will drive very many men who have made sacrifices and suffered much in the past before the ratification of the Treaty of 1921 into the hands of other people who have been referred to here to-night by Deputy Esmonde. I do not know what the policy of those people is, or if they have any policy. I do not know if they ever had a policy or ever intend to have a policy. However, they could throw out a bait to men who made sacrifices in accepting the promises of the late respected General Collins and others. The danger is that these baits may force them away from the straight line of decent citizenship into the ranks of the Irregular campaign, a campaign that may be started in the near future. The responsibility in the matter of the passing of this Bill that is before us now, or at least the passing of its Second Reading, or the responsibility for finding an alternative for it is not, to my mind, our responsibility. It is the responsibility of the Executive Council. They are the makers, they are the fathers, as I might say, of the situation. It is the duty of the father of the child to rear it up to decent manhood, and it is the Executive Council's duty to prove to us that the child they have brought home from London, and that was given birth to in Downing Street, will grow up sound and healthy and that it will establish the unity long sought for in this country.

We are told there are circumstances and consequences that make it imperative on this House to pass this Bill. I do not know what the circumstances are; I do not know what the consequences are. Like many other Deputies. I have not had the facts placed [1756] before me. The Government have failed, and failed hopelessly, to put the facts before me and before the House. What are the facts that created the circumstances that so much reference has been made to here within the past three or four days? There has been talk about the Feetham line and about terrible and immediate war. Some Deputies were good enough to suggest that this should be accepted in preference to war. Has any Deputy gone to the trouble of finding out if there will be war should the Bill not pass? Is there going to be war? They are all full of war.

The people who are in opposition to this House and who are outside to-day, in discussing the Treaty of 1921, suggested that it was by a threat of war that the Irish signatories were forced to sign. Deputies here adopt the same attitude. They stand up in the House and practically point a revolver at the heads of those in opposition to the Bill, and they say: “If you do not pass it, it means terrible war and bloodshed.” Ridiculous nonsense. They have no proof for what they are saying. We heard the Minister for Industry and Commerce this evening giving a theatrical rehearsal that I did not think it possible for even Harry Lauder to venture upon. It was one of those manoeuvring rehearsals with which we are familiar from the Ministerial Benches. We heard the evasions, the theatrical evasions, due to quickness of mind brought about by high education and accompanied by a call to the Bar. A good deal of attention was paid to this, theatrical rehearsal by every Deputy, but all the time when I looked around the Chamber I observed the pleasant and amusing faces all laughing and smiling at the performance on the Ministerial Benches.

Mr. HOGAN (Clare): A Christmas pantomime.

Mr. HALL: Yes; they started really in this House. Not once did the Minister for Industry and Commerce endeavour to make the position clear. When any question was put to him here he was like a barrister in the High Court trying to quibble and give quibbling answers. Several Deputies, including [1757] Deputies Baxter, Johnson and Davin, asked questions, and they all got a theatrical reply that one would only expect from a man like Harry Lauder. I do not intend to say very much more. I am aware that another Minister has to address the House before the debate comes to a conclusion.

Mr. CONNOR HOGAN: The Minister for Defence?

Mr. HALL: The President has to address the House again, and I am sure he will not be disappointed. No doubt we will have another theatrical rehearsal. It may be more exciting than that given by the Minister for Industry and Commerce. I suppose there will be a little bit of venom in it and, possibly, some of the vinegar that Deputy Esmonde suggests Miss MacSwiney is steeped in will be attached to his tongue. There is one thing I want to make plain: I, as one Deputy, hold no responsibility for the action of the Ministry that did not do its duty to the State in accordance with Article XII. It had its powers to force the Commission established in London to take a plebiscite of the people and find out their wishes. Luckily enough, they were enabled to discover what the Commission was doing through the pen of the political reporter of the “Morning Post.”

They had another remedy. They could appeal to the League of Nations. They could have brought there the Feetham Report and along with it the terms of reference; they could place them side by side and have them interpreted by international lawyers. We are led to believe that this State is a member of the League of Nations, yet they made no application to be heard there. They have decided that it would be a better policy on their part to keep friendly with Great Britain and make friends with Sir James Craig. They came back with a document that is a disgrace and a dishonour to the State. Deputies who vote for this Bill, even though it may bring serious consequences to the State, are selling the honour and dignity of their country.

AN CEANN COMHAIRLE resumed the Chair.

[1758] The PRESIDENT: We have now listened for four days to a criticism of this particular instrument that has been placed before the Dáil. Many people have ransacked historical works in order to see how they could employ some of the information contained there in connection with this discussion. As far as I can learn, this particular trouble started in 1886. It occurred again in 1893, and the next incident occurred in 1912. Then we had it again in 1913, 1914, and 1916. In 1916 it was complicated to some extent by a letter from the Rev. Father O'Flanagan and by a meeting that was held in Belfast.

In 1917 an attempt was made to find a solution. In 1920 the British Parliament passed what is called the Partition Act, and the legal term of which is the Government of Ireland Act. We come down then to the one big gesture from Sir James Craig when he came here in 1921 to meet the then President of Dáil Eireann. In my view there was an opportunity at that time to do some business, but the same record has to be made in relation to that interview as concerns every other date I have mentioned. Failure marked every attempt to find a solution of this question. We may get apologists who will get up and say: “We ought to have had another chance; a longer time ought to have been given.” The fact is that the solution fell to us and that is what has us here. Now, it would not be out of place to repeat what the late General Collins said in connection with the North-East, when speaking on the Treaty debate. He said:—“I would like to treat the question of the North-East corner in a similar manner. There have been many references that we would never accept partition.” Again: “We must look facts in the face; we must examine statements that have been made in the light of their implications. In our correspondence with the British Premier we made it clear that we did not intend to coerce the North-East.” Numbers of us have reiterated that one way or another since. That has been the policy of responsible political leaders in this country for four years. It is [1759] not the policy of the Opposition to this measure. They want coercion, but they do not want to call it that. Not a single person who has spoken against this instrument here for the last four days has said that if it passes it will have his good-will and support even though he disagrees with it.

Mr. ESMONDE: That is not true.

Mr. BAXTER: I also say that is not true.

The PRESIDENT: Very well. I am glad to hear that there are two who are going to make it a success. Are there any others willing to make a success of this last effort of ours to bring peace, concord and goodwill to this country?

Mr. MORRISSEY: I think the President can rely that every person in this House will be pleased if all the President expects will come from this measure will be realised.

The PRESIDENT: And that every effort will be made to make it a success?

Mr. MORRISSEY: I am sure.

The PRESIDENT: I have good reason for asking that.

Mr. MORRISSEY: If the feelings of fraternity, brotherhood and concord, which the President expects, come from this I am sure that every person in this House and in the country will be delighted.

The PRESIDENT: That is good, very good. It would have been much easier for us to come to an accommodation had we been able to say the same of the efforts made three or four years ago by General Collins and Sir James Craig. They having made a pact of peace, other people made it their business to see that it was not going to succeed. What is the contribution now of those people outside this House, neglecting their duties and responsibilities and trying to place every obstacle in the way of the prosperity of the country? What is their contribution towards a solution of this matter? In Document No. 2, on which they stand [1760] at present, with the exception of the term “British” before the words “Government of Ireland Act,” their method of solving this question is exactly the same as ours; and if a Commission had been set up, and if the Northern Government had not appointed a representative on that Commission, they would have had to take the same means to ensure that that Commissioner would have been appointed as we have taken. The potentialities of partition were in the Treaty, and we were committed to them from the very commencement. Only one thing could have avoided partition once the Treaty was accepted, and that was that the Northern Government would not have opted out. Article XIV. provided for that; it provided the same machinery, the same words—everything except the explanatory clause— that are in our policy of the Treaty are in Document No. 2. What were the inducements for the Northern Government to exercise their option in favour of union in this country? They were invited by the anti-Treaty Party to warm their hands and their hearts at the fires they were kindling throughout the country. That was a nice invitation. When we called off the boycott with Belfast, goods were destroyed, goods were taken out of railway waggons and burned. When we attack Sir James Craig and the Northern Government for their bigotry let us remember that we cannot place our hands on our hearts and say that they did not get an invitation to do it.

After a very long delay the Boundary Commission was set up, and I notice that in January, 1924, even Deputy Baxter put a question to me on the point as to when it was going to function, and grave doubts were expressed whether the Government really meant business in that connection. From the commencement no expense was spared and no opportunity lost. Every precaution was taken. The best Civil Servants that could be got were employed to make the case. In fact, no Department of State functioned with greater vigour or energy or had within its ranks persons better qualified to make a case for those for whom we were acting as trustees. One of [1761] those employed was the winner of the £1,000 Filene Prize. That will give some indication of the wish and determination of the Government to discharge their obligations as trustees. When the speeches which have been quoted against us here are read it will be plain and distinct to anyone, no matter how prejudiced he is against the Executive Council, that their whole hearts and souls and minds and strength were brought into play in order that the best issues that could be got out of the Boundary Commission would be got. Now, when we hear learned professors talking about ineptitude, incompetency, inefficiency, and so on, and when we ask them for an alternative, the only one that can be suggested is a coalition. I hope the baby is doing well. I believe it is crowing to-night.

Professor MAGENNIS: Evidently the President is not aware of it, but I have already corrected that mistake when made by the Minister for Finance and he accepted the correction.

Mr. BLYTHE: No, sir.

Professor MAGENNIS: I never proposed as an alternative, to the present agreement, a Coalition Government. I spoke of what constitutional course should have been followed before this Agreement was ever dreamt of.

The PRESIDENT: Well, sir, he was two hours getting out what he thought would have been better than what the Executive Council was recommending, and now neither himself, I think, nor the Dáil is any wiser as to the solution he was proposing. The circumstances since the 7th November are within the minds of every member of the Dáil. We were within one month of the publication of the report by the Commission. Our representative on the Commission resigned somewhere in the month of November, and we were faced with a very serious problem. It was a matter of doubt with some people as to whether two Commissioners could issue a report. A perusal of cases of that kind—practically parallel cases— led one to believe that it was more than possible that the Commission was legally entitled to publish the Award. I have not seen the Award.

[1762] I heard Dr. MacNeill here in the House give an indication as to what it was like. Sir James Craig has not seen it. I was informed by the Prime Minister of Great Britain that the award was somewhat better—much better I believe he said—than the published forecast. On the balance, I should say, speaking now from recollection of what he told me, we should get something like a couple of hundred square miles and some twenty odd thousands of people. We would have lost a considerable portion of the County Donegal. When Deputy O'Maille is shedding tears about the loss of Tyrone I hope he will not forget to shed a few for the danger that might have happened in O'Donnell's county.

Mr. ESMONDE: Is this on the authority of the British Prime Minister?

The PRESIDENT: Deputy O'Maille's tears were not known to the Prime Minister, but if he means information I am giving the House as regards the balance and so forth, yes. He had seen the report. I see Deputy O'Maille smiling. I hope he is not smiling at the sufferings of the people in the North. We were in this position: we had four possible decisions to make. There was the Boundary Commission Report and the question of taking such steps as we deemed advisable to test its legality, or, as my learned friend said a few moments ago, of bringing it to the League of Nations, or retaining the old line as an agreed line. I could see no other way of dealing with the problem than by one or other of these alternatives. I would like to say here that in view of the representations that had been made to us, and in view of the information at our disposal, and bearing in mind that while we were the trustees for some, we had more than the responsibility of trustees for the citizens we were in danger of losing. I must say that I was satisfied in my own mind that it would take a very considerable amount of persuasion to make me look with any degree of favour upon the Boundary Commission Report, and those were the four possible alternatives which would have faced Deputy Professor Magennis's baby if it came into [1763] existence. As regards the first, I have already dealt with it; and as regards the second, I am putting my own view to the House.

The question to be solved was a difference between Irishmen. Already a non-Irishman had been brought in to endeavour to effect a solution. In my opening speech I said that a Divine solution was asked from human agency, and it was impossible. Bringing the question to the League of Nations would be raising false hopes— and perhaps succeeding—but I want to make it perfectly clear that while we have to suffer from expressions of opinion from other people, if we leave office to-morrow no one can say we have damaged any one of those four cases, or have done anything to prevent them being taken up by our successors and put through. All the arguments that could be used before the League of Nations stand good. The statement I make that as an Irishman I object to other people drawing a line is a perfectly legitimate one, and it does not affect the issue in this case. There is either the old line or an agreed line. I should like Deputy Davin, when recognising the agreed line, to picture himself for a moment standing in my position and recommending to the Dáil a line which would involve a surrender of other people or territory. Then there is the question of the old line. The old line had the advantage, at any rate, that it has been in existence for four years. It was, and had been for a long time, the wish of the Northern Government to have it, and it afforded a more stable basis for peace, understanding and good-will than a line which would be drawn by people whose responsibility in connection with the matter ceased when the line was drawn.

We came to the conclusion that if there was to be a line, that if we were unable to secure for the people for whom we were acting as trustees every ounce out of the Treaty, if we were unable to secure that they would be brought into the Free State, then it was a matter upon which judgment had to be brought to bear as to whether the old line, with all the advantages [1764] of it, or a new line with its many complications and disadvantages, ought not to be taken. Now I want to tear the mask off the political humbugs in this country, a mask which shrouds their hypocrisy. I want to expose to the Irish people those gentlemen who are endeavouring to deceive them by saying that we are, for the first time, definitely and permanently making partition in this country. Partition is there, settled and determined by the Treaty, and by its disinherited foster-brother, Document No. 2, which says: “For the purposes of the British Government (Ireland) Act, 1920, and of this instrument, the boundary of Northern Ireland shall be such as may be determined by such Commission.” What is that?

Mr. GOREY: The same damn thing.

The PRESIDENT: Certainly it is, and I suppose we will read it in the Press to-morrow that they were always against Partition. I would like that the Leas Cheann Comhairle in his spare time would look up the last volume of Dáil debates, and he will find on page 579 where he voted for the second reading of the Constitution. The Constitution is an instrument of peace, and the foundation of the liberties of this country, and attached to it is the Treaty, and attached to the Treaty is the sentence I have read out. Is that partition? Partition, as I said, in a certain eventuality, and that is a thing that the Leas Cheann Comhairle has taken up and about which he shed tears last night when he thought of Tyrone and Fermanagh being lost to us though he was utterly indifferent as to whether or not Tirconaill was going. Now, if we have arrived at the conclusion that the best interests of peace would be served by getting agreement, getting accommodation, getting peace and goodwill on the old lines, what was the next alternative? How can we make the Irish Free State so attractive that it will be unnecessary to make political speeches in order to get our Northern fellow-countrymen to join us? How can we manage to make this country sound commercially, sound economically, sound politically and otherwise? Apparently by securing as [1765] far as possible that its credit will be on a sound foundation, and one drawback that we saw, in so far as any relations we had with the British Government were concerned, was Article V. If there are people here who think that in our negotiations with the British we damaged a case that might be made by our successors if this is not taken, I would like to relieve their minds. In our negotiations we went on one issue alone, and that was our ability to pay. Not a single penny of a counter-claim did we put up. We cited the condition of affairs in this country—250,000 occupiers of uneconomic holdings, the holdings of such a valuation as did not permit of a decent livelihood for the owners; 212,000 labourers, with a maximum rate of wages of 26s. a week: with our railways in a bad condition, with our Old Age Pensions on an average, I suppose, of 1s. 6d. a week less than is paid in England or in Northern Ireland, with our inability to fund the Unemployment Fund, with a tax on beer of 20s. a barrel more than they, with a heavier postage rate. That was our case. I do not think that there was much wrong with it. And if this great Coalition Government were to come along to-morrow I think that they would find that, notwithstanding the fact that we were an inept, an inefficient, an incompetent, and an egotistical Government, that they would not want to withdraw, that they would not want to defend, anything we have said. We have prejudiced nothing, we have lost nothing, and we have secured something that was never before secured, and that is the goodwill of Northern Ireland.

We explained also that our imports for the first seven months of 1924 were twenty-eight millions odd; for the first seven months of 1925, thirty-five millions. For the first seven months of 1924 our exports and re-exports were twenty-six millions, and for the first seven months of 1925 twenty-two millions, and I am glad to say, I am proud to say, and let whoever likes make political capital out of it, that we met honest, just, and generous people to make a case to. The Irregulars can go out now if they like and sound that throughout the country. I am going [1766] to tell the truth in connection with these negotiations—the whole truth. We explained that we were paying out three and a quarter millions a year for land held by our people, more than half of them occupying uneconomic holdings. We explained that we were sending out of the country a million and a quarter in pensions, and we told the British Ministers: “You can, if you like, assess us for ten, twenty, thirty millions; we will not be able to pay. Is it any advantage to your country to make us bankrupt? We are not standing for repudiation. We are prepared to bear our burden; we are bearing at present, and will be bearing for a long time, an undue burden, and we are not honestly able to pay a single penny.” It was accepted in good faith, and that finished Article V.

I have been reading many books on finance. I have been reading about John Dunne in the 'sixties, about Sir Jos. Neill McKenna in 1888, and Mr. John Blake-Dillon in either the 'fifties or the 'sixties, and I have been reading about the Childers Commission, about all the claims and all the statements that have been made regarding over-taxation. It is stopped now, definitely stopped now, once and for all. And what have we agreed to pay? Five million pounds odd, not fifteen millions.

A DEPUTY: Six.

The PRESIDENT: Five. Get me five millions now and I will clear the debt. I am a trifle hard at bargains, as I once told Mr. de Valera, and when this money was offered to me at 4¾ per cent. interest, sinking fund and all, I must say that I was astonished at the generous treatment given. We are borrowing money here at present at more than 5¼ per cent., and if we were to borrow this we would put a tax upon our credit. That tax is not on your pockets. I remember three or four years ago when the Minister for Justice first went over to arrange about compensation he put it to the British Ministers that they should pay a share of it, and he was met with the reply: “Great Britain never paid an indemnity.” In the course of the bargain I offered to accept our liability in that respect. And why should we not? Are we strong [1767] enough to make the British Government pay an indemnity on leaving this country? This is a back-to-back arrangement, with no bad feeling over it, with good feeling and a better spirit between the two countries, a better spirit with our Northern fellow-countrymen, and the first evidence of it appeared in the papers yesterday. We have been taxed with not having made accommodation for our friends in the North who have suffered. How was accommodation made here? There are four Parties in the House. Is there any Party that will say that if they did not get all that they wanted and all that they made a claim for, they did not get fair play when they put up a case [1768] to us? If the Nationalists of the North attend that Parliament in the same spirit as that in which you have come here, if they make their case and if they do not receive justice, then it is time enough for you to say to me that there has been no success in this, that there was no good feeling and good-will. But until that time comes, every good Irishman who loves this country, every man who wishes to see this country placed on a sound foundation, everyone who looks to the nation instead of to the individual or party, must, if he is an honest man, support this as the best thing that could be done under the circumstances.

Question put.

The Dáil divided.

Tá, 71; Níl, 20

Earnán Altún.

Richard H. Beamish.

Earnán de Blaghd.

Thomas Bolger.

Séamus Breathnach.

Seoirse de Bhuldh.

Séamus de Búrca.

John J. Cole.

John Conlan.

Bryan R. Cooper.

Sir James Craig.

John Daly.

Máighréad Ní Choileáin Bean Uí Dhrisceóil.

Michael Egan.

Patrick J. Egan.

Seán de Faoite.

Desmond Fitzgerald.

John Good.

Thomas Hennessy.

John Hennigan.

William Hewat.

Connor Hogan.

Patrick Leonard.

Seosamh Mac a' Bhrighde.

Liam Mac Cosgair.

Maolmhuire Mac Eochahdha.

Pádraig Mac Fadáin.

Patrick McGilligan.

Risteárd Mac Liam.

Eoin Mac Néill.

Seoirse Mac Niocaill.

Liam Mac Sioghaird.

Pádraig Mag Ualghairg.

James Sproule Myles.

Martin M. Nally.

John T. Nolan.

Michael K. Noonan.

Peadar O hAodha.

Mícheál O hAonghusa.

Seán O Bruadair.

Risteárd O Conaill.

Parthalán O Conchubhair.

Conchubhair O Conghaile.

Máirtín O Conalláin.

Séamus O Cruadhlaoich.

Eoghan O Dochartaigh.

Séamus O Dóláin.

Tadhg O Donnabháin.

Peadar O Dubhghaill.

Pádraig O Dubhthaigh.

Eamon O Dúgáin.

Donnchadh O Guaire.

Mícheál O hIfearnáin.

Aindriú O Láimhín.

Séamus O Leadáin.

Fionán O Loingsigh.

Risteárd O Maolchatha.

James O Mara.

Domhnall O Mocháin.

Séamus O Murchadha.

Pádraig O hOgáin (Gaillimh).

Pádraig O hOgáin (Luimneach).

Seán O Raghallaigh.

Máirtín O Rodaigh.

Seán O Súilleabháin.

Andrew O'Shaughnessy.

Mícheál O Tighearnaigh.

Caoimhghín O hUigín.

Patrick W. Shaw.

Liam Thrift.

Nicholas Wall.

Níl

Pádraig Baxter.

Seán Buitléir.

Séamus Eabhróid.

Osmond Grattan Esmonde.

David Hall.

Tomás Mac Eoin.

Risteárd Mac Fheorais.

Pádraig Mac Fhlannchadha.

Liam Mag Aonghusa.

Tomás de Nógla.

Criostóir O Broin.

Tomás O Conaill.

Aodh O Cúlacháin.

Liam O Daimhín.

Eamon O Dubhghaill.

Seán O Laidhin.

Pádraic O Máille.

Domhnall O Muirgheasa.

Tadhg O Murchadha.

Pádraig O hOgáin (An Clár).

[1769] Tellers: Tá, Mr. Dolan and Mr. Sears. Níl: Mr. Morrissey and Mr. Baxter.

Motion declared carried.