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18 October 2007 Edition

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Fifth Column

Ivor Burma warning

BURMA’S military junta has faced down the United Nations, the European Union and the world’s biggest super-power, the United States of America, but those rascals in Rangoon are in trouble now. Disgraced Fianna Fáil former minister, Senator Ivor Callely has promised Dubliners in the leafy suburbs of wealthy Clontarf that he will “keep a close eye on Burma”.
Never mind that he lost his Dáil seat in the last election, Ivor The Publicity Engine warns Burma’s ruling warlords in a missive to the media: “I will continue to closely monitor developments in Burma to ensure no human rights abuses.”
That’s it then. Job done. Amnesty International can relax, the USA and the UN can stand back, and the tens of thousands of refugees can go home singing. And Aung San Suu Kyi can tell the gun-toting cops keeping her under house arrest that they can stick their martial law up their junta because everyone is safe in the knowledge that, any funny business, and Ivor Callely will be round to sort them out.
I’ll bet the junta’s bamboo curtains are rattling already.
Next week’s news: Willie O’Dea challenges Al Qaeda to come outside for a straightener.

Junta out, painters in

SENATOR CALLELY, all DIY fans will recall, had to leave his job as junior transport minister and get out of the Fianna Fáil cabinet room before he was evicted.
Ivor’s fall from grace came when it was discovered two years ago that one of the country’s biggest building firms carrying out government contracts had, entirely coincidentally, painted Ivor’s private residence for free back in the early 1990s. The painters had ‘forgotten’ to give Ivor the bill, and Ivor had ‘forgotten’ to ask for it.
If he can’t actually get over to Burma with his constituency caravan, maybe he could ask his house decorating mates to pop over and give Aung San Suu Kyi’s gaff a lick of paint to cheer her up until Ivor Callely can set her people free.

Carry on, Kelvin

KELVIN MacKENZIE the notorious Thatcherite former editor of The Sun has struck a mighty blow for republicanism and the break-up of the self-styled ‘United Kingdom’. He’s slammed the Scots as lazy, useless “subsidy junkies” sponging off the clever wealth creators of London and south-east England.
Scotland’s Daily Record described MacKenzie’s rant on BBC TV and Stephen Nolan’s BBC Radio Five Live show as “a bigot’s racist outburst”.
The Record said, replace the word ‘Scots’ with ‘Jews’, ‘blacks’ or ‘Asians’ and the Sun columnist could well have found himself up on a charge of inciting racism (and not before time for someone from The Sun, I hear you say).
But what really worries the anti-independence Record is the effect the Sun man will have on the fortunes of the Scottish National Party.
“Forget Alex Salmond,” Saturday’s editorial says. “Kelvin MacKenzie may prove to be the SNP’s most effective recruiting sergeant.”

MacKenzie’s missiles

IT WAS MacKenzie who sparked a boycott of The Sun when he accused Liverpool fans of not only causing the Hillsborough Stadium disaster in 1989 in which 69 Reds supporters lost their lives but of fellow Scousers robbing people as they lay dying on the terraces.
It was MacKenzie who revelled in a topless teenage model being pictured caressing a missile “sponsored” by The Sun – complete with the paper’s logo on the side – which he said was going to “kill Argies” during the Malvinas/Falklands War in 1982.
And when 323 “Argies” were indeed blown to bits or drowned when the naval cruiser General Belgrano was sunk, it was MacKenzie as editor who ran the headline “GOTCHA”.

Chemical reaction

THE Conservative Party has lost a high court battle with the family of a pharmaceuticals mogul to keep their hands on the £8.3 million he left to them in his will when Margaret Thatcher was in power.
Branislav Kostic wrote his will in the 1980s, when he said Thatcher would save the world from “satanic monsters” (some mistake, surely? – Ed).
David Cameron’s party fought tooth and nail to hold on to the man’s millions. The chemical king’s only son challenged the bequest (and won), though, on the grounds that his father was “deluded and insane” – which could be a sound basis for anyone whose parents are barmy enough to leave their money to the Tories.

Brits’ wit list

HAVE you heard the one about the Englishman, the Scotsman and the Welshman who thought ‘Britain’s Greatest Wit’ was an Irishman?
Three thousand people polled for new digital TV station Dave put Oscar Wilde top of their wit parade. Second was another Irishman, Goon Show luminary Spike Milligan.
The Irish beat the likes of Noel Coward, William Shakespeare and even the legendary and late soccer manager, Brian Clough.
One of Wilde’s many classic quotes is:
“To disagree with three-fourths of the British public is one of the first requisites of sanity.”

Lay it on me, Noel

NOEL COWARD, placed seventh in the Brit wit list, once said:
“Wit ought to be a glorious treat like caviar; never spread it about like marmalade.”
Just keep that in mind when you’re reading An Phoblacht.

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