Fintan O’Toole: Ireland can be the middle island between the EU and Biden’s US

The crises of 2016 posed huge difficulties for Ireland but have left us in a better place

 UK prime minister Boris Johnson. Photograph: Justin Tallis/AFP via Getty Images

UK prime minister Boris Johnson. Photograph: Justin Tallis/AFP via Getty Images

Winston Churchill famously claimed in 1922 that, as the floodwaters of the first World War began to recede, “the dreary steeples of Fermanagh and Tyrone” emerged again as the only thing left unchanged by the great cataclysm.

But now, as the aftershocks of the political upheavals of 2016 – Trump and Brexit – begin to diminish, Ireland’s place in the world does not seem either dreary or unaltered.

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