The Commonwealth of Ireland (Irish: Comhlathas na hÉireann) is a Federal State located in Ireland. It was formed from the former sovereign state of the Republic of Ireland and British Constituent Country of Northern Ireland, which are now the two federal states. Whilst the Head of State is democratically elected, it is officially neither a Republic nor a Monarchy.
Prior to the Great Nuclear War, the island of Ireland was split between the Independent, predominantly Catholic, Republic of Ireland and the predominantly Protestant, British Constituent Country of Northern Ireland. Despite this, there were still problems in the north, as much of the Catholic minority wished to unite with the Republic. From 1956, a minor guerrilla campaign was fought on the Irish-Ulster border, code named Operation Harvest.
Great Nuclear War
The island of Ireland was not hit in the Nuclear War. However, its effects were immediately felt. In the south, the economic effects were felt. Whilst not part of any bloc, and neutral, the Irish government declared a State of Emergency, which lasted for 48 hours, and the military was put on high alert. However, the north was not so lucky. Whilst spared the ravages of nuclear war, the loss of contact with the British government meant no State of Emergency could be declared. Fighting quickly broke out between Catholic and Protestant communities. Local police forces and limited Army units attempted to quell this for two days. However, with the ineffectual government security. on the 1st November the local forces of the British Army declared a State of Emergency and took over control, blocking off most roads and arresting hundreds. While without formal permission from the British government, and therefore technically illegal, the move served to help peace.
With the turn of the new year, the Irish Government offered Northern Ireland assistance. The British army began to stand down and allow normal Police to take control, whilst Irish supplies moved in. It is believed that this helped to encourage both sides of dissenters to start to calm. However, on the 5th May 1963, Ulster and Irish representatives met to discuss the future. This prompted many Loyalists to suspect annexation to the Republic would occur, and unrest began again, prompting talks to end. However, from June, representatives again met, promising that Ulster would remain independent of the Republic, and in August a proposal was presented: both the Republic and Northern Ireland would give up their sovereignty to accede to a new nation, the Commonwealth of Ireland. Both of the former states would remain federal and highly devolved. Indeed, it was presented in many ways as a natural progression of the 1923 Common Travel Area, which ensured free movement of travel between the two states, and duel citizenship was available. To appease Monarchists, the state was not expressively a monarchy or republic, though the head of state is a President.
Apart from sporadic meetings and minor trade, contact was not officially made with the United Kingdom until 1992. The two states were pleased to meet each other, and whilst UK Prime Minister Nicholas Soames expressed some concerns as the Northern Ireland's apparent annexation, he was pleased to see both their survival, and the stability brought.
The top two administrative levels are the Federal States. These are Northern Ireland (formed from the former British constituent country of the same name) and the Republic of Ireland (formed of the former sovereign state of that name). Whilst the Commonwealth controls taxation, military and defence, budgets and taxation, the States have complete control over all other aspects.