29 JANUARY 1972, Page 18

Irish mess

Sir: The inability of Mr Faulkner and his supporters to recognise that the 1920-21 settlement has failed in the north of Ireland • shows that they live in a dreamworld and that they are far from being the hard-headed realists they so often claim to be. The fact that the British government and people take them seriously would be laughable were it not so tragic. That they are allowed to have anything whatever to do with security is a blunder worse than any crime.

David O'Mahony

Professor of Economics, Department of Economics, University College, Cork Sir: How dual your morality, how selective your indignation, how typically English you are! You wax indignant over the imprisonment without trial of two Britishmen and an Australian (January 22). What about hundreds of Roman Catholics in north-eastern Ireland, some of those on the list guilty of nothing except a wish for a united Ireland, a few not even still alive? Were the trio in South Africa tortured in their genitals, like RCs in the Six Counties?

Patrick J. N. Bury St Patrick's Hospital. James's Street, Dublin