Starmer gives British Labour a lesson in Irish history

Labour leader signals he understands need to uphold Belfast Agreement

Labour leader Keir Starmer. The Labour Party has launched an education initiative for its 500,000 members on the Belfast Agreement. Photograph: Jessica Taylor/UK Parliament/AFP via Getty Images

Labour leader Keir Starmer. The Labour Party has launched an education initiative for its 500,000 members on the Belfast Agreement. Photograph: Jessica Taylor/UK Parliament/AFP via Getty Images

Yesterday the Telegraph made a curious argument for Britain’s future with the Biden administration. Because Joe Biden’s ancestor fled to the United States from Mayo during the famine, it could mean the 46th US president is “well disposed towards Great Britain”. Without wishing to be glib, the famine was likely not the PR coup for Britain some seem to think it is.

But what is one throwaway comment? There are plenty of good cases to be made about Biden’s good future relations with Britain. And the counterargument – that Biden will be bad for Britain simply because he is invested in Ireland – is a facile one. That the famine would have any bearing of Anglo-American policy is a ludicrous notion.

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