The world’s largest publicly owned housing estate, the United States of America (the US Government now owns the country’s two largest mortgage lenders) inaugurated its new president this week.
The fluffed inauguration aside Barack Obama scanned his desk and the debris of the world’s remaining superpower, the recession and wars and rumours of wars; and where did he find a ray of hope…Northern Ireland of course!
Shortly after fulfilling election pledges to end military tribunals and to signal the beginning of the end for the Guantanamo Bay, the President appointed Special Envoys to troubled regions of the world.
As Northern Ireland no longer qualifies for that status – apart from the Assembly chamber - Senator Mitchell has been dispatched to the Middle East to sort out its warring factions. In his announcement, President Obama made specific reference to the success of peace in Northern Ireland. Of course with that success comes an incumbent responsibility for the development of real politics here.