Ben Curry (Socialist Appeal Editorial Board) discusses the results of the recent general elections in Ireland, which have dealt a shattering blow to the Irish establishment and the two-party system.

In the past, liberal commentators superficially asserted that Ireland had escaped the political turbulence that has rocked the rest of Europe. But no longer. Now Ireland had caught up with a bang.

With Sinn Fein coming out on top, the election results are a political earthquake that has shaken the Irish ruling class. Sinn Fein’s victory was achieved on the basis of a programme of left-wing, class-based demands, which found an echo amongst workers and youth, who are tired of sky-high rents and crumbling public services.

At the same time, Sinn Fein’s rise now puts the question of a border boll and Irish reunification firmly back on the agenda. A new period of instability and intense class struggle now lies ahead in Ireland – one in which the masses will rediscover the revolutionary traditions of James Connolly and socialist Republicanism.

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