About the Site

This is the official memorial website for the former Taoiseach, Charles J. Haughey, which has been established with the consent of his family. It is a work in progress and is intended to provide factual information on his career in public life and on his considerable contribution and achievements over many decades.

Other Articles

German re-unification : Opinion by Pádraig Kennelly

This is an abridged version of an article by the late Pádraig Kennelly on German unification, which evolved at a time when Charles Haughey was President of the European Council. It appeared in the Kerry Eye in November 2010 .

The Irish Independent printed an article by Taoiseach Brian Cowen in its issue of Monday 9th. November 2010. It gives a good account of the breaking of the wall in Berlin and the positive effect it had in allowing the re-unification of Germany.

None of this would have happened had Charles Haughey not been President of the Council of Ministers in the first six months of 1990.....it led, in the long term, to the admission of ten additional states into the EU.

President Mitterand in France and Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in Britain were opposed to the re-unification. Before 1990 ended, Thatcher was forced out of office. Her anti-European stance was at the top of her list of pressures to resign.

....Haughey's actions in managing to instigate a bloodless coup in the exciting six months that followed the smashing of the Berlin Wall is unequalled.

...In his address to the EU Parliament, Haughey quoted Gorbachev's comment on the breaking of the wall on 9th. November 1989: "We have suddenly and unexpectedly arrived at the beginning of the end of the barren post war years of confrontation".

Haughey was able to tell the EU Parliament, when he addressed the members on 16th. May 1990, that on 28th. April at his second Dublin Summit of Council of Ministers, that they had agreed all matters relating to the "integration of the German Democratic Republic into the European Community".

He told them that though German political leaders wanted national unity, they realised "it could only come about under a European roof".

Haughey's personal friendship with President Francois Mitterand enabled him to confine the French President to an unsuccessful whisper campaign.

It was a remarkable achievement for Haughey that he managed to successfully launch an Inter-Governmental Conference to follow the lead set by the European Union and Monetary one.

...Haughey knew that in the short term, the major European aid fund would be transferred from Ireland to the former German Democratic Republic.

What Haughey did was statesman-like act. It proved to be a correct one. East has caught up with the West in Germany. In less than 20 years the economies of both parts equalised.