British queen makes historic peace trip to Ireland
Respendent in a cloak of emerald green and a dress of St. Patrick's blue, the 85-year-old queen stepped out from a bombproof, bulletproof Range Rover outside the official residence of Irish President Mary McAleese. Irish Army artillery units fired a 21-gun salute as a military brass band played "God Save the Queen."
The painstakingly choreographed visit has been designed to highlight today's exceptionally strong Anglo-Irish relations and the slow blooming of peace in neighboring Northern Ireland following a three-decade conflict that left 3,700 dead.
The queen arrived 100 years after her grandfather George V visited Dublin and an Ireland that was still part of the British Empire.
Beaming smiles by the queen and McAleese — a Belfast-born Catholic who has spent 14 years lobbying for Elizabeth II to visit — demonstrated genuine warmth between the two women, who have met several times before.
McAleese said Britain and Ireland were "determined to make the future a much, much better place." The queen didn't comment ahead of her planned speech Wednesday night at Dublin Castle, the former seat of British rule of Ireland.