LETTER: Talk to enemies, not friends

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IT WAS not 17 months of the wit of John Major that kept the Northern Ireland peace plan going ("Who can save the peace", 11 February), it was the direct and ongoing personal intervention of Bill Clinton.

John Major has never honoured the original paragraphs of the Joint Declaration with Albert Reynolds, but has stalled at every step with additional demands from Sinn Fein to use the word "permanent" and then to decommission weapons.

It is time he and the Ulster Unionists realised that you don't gain peace by sitting around tables talking with friends but with enemies. It is time, too, that the Ulster Unionists realised that half the population have no stake in Northern Ireland, a bogus state not represented on the Union Jack, and with a Protestant majority whose roots lie in Scotland.

All the people of Ireland and mainland Britain should have a say in the future of the six counties which have not only cost thousands of lives, but a vast fortune to the British taxpayer. Northern Ireland is a grotesque parody of democracy.

J Williams

Weybridge, Surrey