Our current Minister for Justice and Defence has made several statements criticising the actions of the Irish Free State during and after World War Two, which ended long before he was born.
Our policy of neutrality was "morally bankrupt" he has said. He apologised for the condign punishment handed out to men who had deserted from our own armed forces.
How does he feel about the incontrovertible schmooze fest that is being indulged in today to welcome the daughter of a leading military/political figure from the time who chose not just to stand aside from the war but to participate actively and brutally AGAINST the Western Allies, to lead an insurgent army backed, equipped and in many cases trained by the Japanese and to indulge in a civil war in his own country which inflamed many long-standing ethnic tensions and saw many incidents of massacre and what we would today call "ethnic cleansing" perpetrated by troops of the insurgent army he commanded against people of his own country?
For such is the record of Aung San, father of the media darling Aung San Suu Kyi who today is having her Nobel Prize winning backside kissed and more by such bellwethers of public opinion as Bono, Bob Geldof and many of our leading politicians.
My aim here is not to hold her to account for the actions of her father who died when she was an infant. (Assassinated as it happens by a conspiracy which included members of British intelligence, acting unofficially of course)
Nor indeed to criticise her father unduly. He did, after all, change sides during the war when he realised that Japanese support for Burmese insurgents against the British was not the same as support for Burmese independence per se.
The reason I put this in History and Heritage is because it raises questions about how we view the past and the actions of people at the time, facing the situation as they saw it and without the benefit of hindsight.
Failure to support wholeheartedly all actions by the Allied side tends to be conflated nowadays to mean "supporter of Nazi tyranny". Especially in the public statements of Mr Shatter. This is not so. It has never been so.
Reputable people often form temporary alliances of convenience with utterly disreputable people in alliance against a common foe. Such as the Finns during the war, allied with Nazi Germany against the Soviet Union. Such as Aung San who played off both empires with designs on his country against each other.
He was also prepared to tolerate vicious ethnic strife in his own country as a price to be paid for independence. But then, so were many of the heroes of our independence struggle, not least Mr De Valera.
At least Dev, in keeping us neutral, used the benefits of his experience largely to avoid a reignition of our Civil War which would surely have attended entering the war on the Allied side. For that he is to be praised. And Mr Shatter, as long as he is a minister of this country, should shut up with his retrospective condemnations.
Unless he wants to ask Madam Aung San what her daddy did in the war...