We need a return of National Service in the UK and the Republic of Ireland with people required, at some time in their lives, to do two years in some branch of the security forces - Army, Navy, Air Force, community police, or emergency services such as Ambulances and Fire Brigade.
During this compulsory two-year service, people would also be taught a trade, such as plumbing, brick work, or mechanics given that vocational trade training suffered during the pandemic.
People could extend their National Service by enlisting in the regular security forces. National Service would also be a chance for citizens to fully understand patriotic pride in the UK or the Republic of Ireland and show off what it means to be a patriotic British citizen of the UK, or a patriotic Irish citizen of the Republic, thereby heralding in a new era of cross-border co-operation.
National Service was initially introduced in the UK in 1949, four years after the end of the Second World War in which many people from both Northern and Southern Ireland served valiantly in the defeat of Hitler - in spite of Eire supposedly being politically neutral during that war and the IRA trying to take advantage of the UK’s military dilemma by pussy footing with Berlin, and turning a blind eye to the horrors of the Holocaust.
National Service in the UK ended in 1960 with the last recruits being discharged in 1963. As part of this peacetime conscription, able-bodied men between the ages of 18 and 30 had to serve around 18 months in the Armed forces, although this was extended to two years during the Korean War era of 1950-53.
What is needed across the geographical British Isles - which includes the Republic of Ireland - is a new spirit of patriotism to rebuild societies in the face of the Covid pandemic.
However, time is not on the side of those, like myself, who would suggest such a national venture as the introduction of compulsory National Service for all citizens.
There is no doubt that if the opinion polls are correct in the Republic, Sinn Fein will emerge as the largest party in the next Dail General Election and will be in a prime position to either be the leading party in a coalition government, or even a majority government of its own making.
Sinn Fein is no friend of the security forces in either political state.
Under the Coulter Conscription National Service blueprint, every citizen who holds either a British or Irish passport (or both), irrespective of gender, disability, or age, will be required to serve a minimum of two years in some branch of the Armed forces or emergency services.
Those citizens who live in Northern Ireland could have a choice of either serving their National Service, in terms of the Armed forces, with either British security forces or the Irish security forces.
For example, why should a young Catholic girl from the Bogside in Londonderry, or Ardoyne in West Belfast, who wanted to get involved with policing have to either forget about her patriotic duty or be forced to do it with the Garda in the Republic because of threats from dissident republicans?
Age should not be a barrier either. Why, for example, a retired male civil servant at 65, be barred from National Service? Surely a role can be found for him in the forces or the emergency services?
The key aspect is the link between National Service and holding - or continuing to hold - either a British or Irish passport. The two-year stint in the forces or emergency services is mandatory to a person retaining citizenship in terms of being a passport holder.
Even the very severely disabled could have a role in the conscripted National Service. Each individual, in these cases, would have unique plans drawn up to make them feel an integral part of their society, making a significant contribution to their communities.
In terms of administration, there would be a cross-border body established, similar in principle, to the British Irish Ministerial Council, which would oversee the workings of National Service in both political jurisdictions.
In short, Irish passport holders could serve in the British security forces and British passport holders could serve in the Republic’s forces.
Links with the further education sectors in both political jurisdictions would ensure that during the two-year stints of National Service, the peacetime conscripts would learn a vocational trade.
When a citizen completes their two-year stint, they hopefully would have the choice of either leaving with a recognised vocational qualification, or remaining in the forces or emergency services to continue their patriotic duty to their nation.
And given the war in Ukraine, and the increasing tensions with communist China, the UK and Republic of Ireland would have a trained body of people ready to serve overseas if necessary, or replace full-time soldiers and emergency workers if they were required abroad.
The Republic, of course, would have to recognise its role on the international stage and could no longer view itself as a neutral nation. It will have to take sides in any future conflicts with Russia or China.
Follow Dr John Coulter on Twitter @JohnAHCoulter
Listen to commentator Dr John Coulter’s programme, Call In Coulter, every Saturday morning around 10.15 am on Belfast’s Christian radio station, Sunshine 1049 FM. Listen online.