26th September 2021

Is Social Justice just an Obscure Object of Desire?

The phrase ‘an obscure object of desire’ is not a common one, so I have taken the title given to me to be a reference to the critically acclaimed 1977 film, “That Obscure Object of Desire”.   It was the last film directed by the great Spanish filmmaker, Luis Buñuel who was in his 80s when he made it and I …

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18th August 2021

What are the lessons of the calamity in Afghanistan?

“My Lords, on 4th October 2001, less than a month after 9/11 and a few days before the launch of Operation Enduring Freedom, we debated in this House what should be done.   I intervene again today, like some other participants of twenty years ago, but miss my dear friend, Lord Ashdown of Norton-sub-Hamdon.  In a powerful speech, Paddy focussed on …

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20th June 2021

Why do the innocent suffer?

Sermon preached by Lord Alderdice to Shelswell Benefice at the church of St Michael and All Angels, Fringford on Sunday 20th June 2021 Readings: Job 38: 1 – 11 and Mark 4: 35 – 41.  I have long felt an identification with the Belfast boy, C.S. Lewis, whose early years were spent in Little Lea, a lovely house near to …

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11th June 2021

Britain must lead the creation of an international fund for Israel and Palestine

An international fund can play an important role in making positive change possible between Israeli and Palestine, but it needs political support and the involvement of international partners. Along with many others who care about the people of Israel and Palestine, I was deeply saddened by the recent re-escalation of the conflict between the State of Israel and Hamas in …

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21st May 2021

Defence and Foreign Affairs – May 2021

Speech in a debate in the House of Lords on The Queen’s Speech on Wednesday 19 May 2021 – Hansard Report Lord Alderdice (Liberal Democrat) My Lords, in addressing a few issues of defence and foreign policy, I remind the House of my interests recorded in the register. However, one interest is not registered. Two years ago this month, my …

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11th May 2021

A tribute to Jonathan Fryer

Today I was honoured though saddened to deliver this eulogy at the funeral of my friend, Jonathan Fryer. “We have come together, in person and on-line to celebrate, Jonathan Fryer, a remarkable man who enriched all our lives and those of listeners, viewers and readers in many languages, and all around the world.   Sadly in this time of COVID, although …

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13th April 2021

A tribute to HRH Prince Philip

Her Majesty, the Queen, and the Duke of Edinburgh have been a rock of stability and continuity through the whole of my life, and I confess to feeling emotionally affected by his death, wondering what the generational change it signifies may mean for the future of our country. The Duke of Edinburgh has had an impact on me from early …

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26th March 2021

Lord Speaker election hustings 1

We are at a critical juncture in the life of our House.   The last year has been exceptionally difficult and hopefully we can soon return to more, if not all of us, working at Westminster.  We need to discuss how we do that, so we take account of the needs of all our members, including those with vulnerabilities and disabilities, …

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20th March 2021

What should a new Lord Speaker do?

I have served in the House of Lords for 25 years and in recent weeks I have been encouraged by colleagues from all parts of the House of Lords to stand for election as Lord Speaker, at least in part because of my experience as the first Speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly.  The same healing impulse that took me …

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