Letter: Irish minefield

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Sir: I fully share your desire (leading article, 12 August) to see Mr Major receive the reward that Gladstone and Lloyd George received for their efforts in Ireland.

The former saw the Whig and Radical wings of his party, including the dynamic Joseph Chamberlain, defect to the Tories in protest, leading to the effective exclusion of the Liberals from power for 20 years. The efforts of the latter, that culminated in partition, were a major contributing factor to the Tories ending their support for him. Both men thus faded from being major political players.