No treachery as flag is lowered on Dail

The tricolour on top of the Dublin parliament was taken down from the mast this week, and not before time.

However, an explanation which emerged on Thursday morning was more mundane than the famous republican anthem, urging ‘traitors’ [26-County TDs] to recognise the error of their ways and work for the foundation of an all-Ireland republic.

Rather, the flag was missing because of an unexplained rope issue.

The Ceann Comhairle [speaker], Dr Rory O’Hanlon, told the Dail: “I understand that there was a difficulty with the rope used to suspend the flag. It is being attended to as a matter of urgency,” he said.

Despite the explanation, there was still the slight sense of revolution in the air. Sinn Féin TD Caoimhghin O Caolain had to confirm: “It was not a matter of taking it down from the mast?”.

There were also some comments about what might have happened to the rope, and only one of what could be done with it.

“I take it that there will not be any hangings,” asked Michael Ring, perhaps a little nervously.

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© 2005 Irish Republican News