The Commonwealth in a modern context

Dear Robin,

As you know, I share your and your Reform colleagues’ frustration that the true nature of the modern Commonwealth is apparently so little understood by large sections of the Irish people.

I experienced similar difficulties arising from such misunderstanding in an African context when I joined the Commonwealth Secretariat in 1971 and was in contact with African liberation movements.

The link below provides access to a speech which I delivered almost 39 years ago in an attempt to address this problem. The link includes also a covering note in that respect which I prepared recently.

The speech was helpful in establishing among an African audience the Commonwealth’s credentials as a supporter of that continent’s liberation struggles against colonialism and minority racist regimes.

By the time I retired from the Secretariat in 2003, there were much fewer misapprehensions regarding the modern Commonwealth. It is indeed a sad fact that they remain in Ireland.

I thought that these items might possibly be of some interest to you and your colleagues.

With all personal good wishes,
Yours sincerely,

> Read Speech at Jubilee Time Capsule