Fluctuat Nec Mergitur: Paris’s motto – Latin for Tossed But Not Sunk – on the Eiffel Tower. Photograph: Reuters

In a week that has belonged to the events of Paris, there is often guilt in a radio presenter’s voice when a programme shifts to a lesser item. This m(...)

Peter Robinson: A one-time head of the Northern Ireland civil service described him as “somewhat scary.”Photo : Brian Lawless/PA Wire

During his four decades in Northern Ireland politics, Peter Robinson was seen as a cold fish rather than a people person, a figure who unlike his long(...)

A file image of Northern Ireland First Minister and Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) leader Peter Robinson who confirmed on Thursday he is to stand down from the role and as leader of the DUP.  Photograph: Reuters

Peter Robinson’s decision to stand down as DUP leader and First Minister is a big moment in Northern Ireland politics. It means unionism is losing its(...)

Colm Toibin: ‘I was editor of Magill at 27. I wrote my first novel as a way of keeping the daily business of Garret Fitzgerald and Charlie Haughey and all those stories at bay.’ Photograph: Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for BFI

Colm Tóibín is not just famous; he has a public persona. The red-framed spectacles that hang round the writer’s neck are not quite so well known as(...)

John O’Leary: believed that Charles Haughey was aware of the tapping of journalists’ phones in the early 1980s.  Photograph: Paddy Whelan

John O’Leary, who has died aged 82, was a former Fianna Fáil TD for the Kerry South constituency and minister of state at the Department of the Enviro(...)

US senator Edward Kennedy: He played a key role in Northern Ireland, voicing concerns about the violence from the early 1970s through to the early 1990s. Photograph: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Throughout the difficult negotiations leading to the 1998 Belfast Agreement, then taoiseach Bertie Ahern kept in regular contact with US senator Edwar(...)

The value to the Garda of mining data one even one phone in an inquiry is significant. Photograph: Brent Lewin/Bloomberg

When it emerged in the early 1980s that journalists’ phones had been tapped, a fierce political and policing storm ensued. A month after the news brok(...)

Senator Marc MacSharry. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien/The Irish Times

Sligo was to the fore on the political radar this week, what with the Cabinet decamping for a day to Lissadell House and Senator Marc MacSharry turnin(...)

Aidan Gillen: In his latest film, Mark Noonan’s You’re Ugly Too, he plays a troubled man, recently released from prison, who is forced to care for his alert, back-talking niece. Photograph: Reuters

Aidan Gillen is a versatile sort of fellow. Now 47, the Dubliner has barely rested since signing up with Dublin Youth Theatre three decades ago. He(...)

Peter Cassells: “There was actually a point where Dick Spring asked for that Monday to be declared a public holiday but Charlie Haughey basically told him to go to hell.”

“I’m one of the ones with regrets,” says Peter Cassells. “I regret that I didn’t just sell the fridge and go; or that I wasn’t of the ones that went(...)