If the way our new and future leaders talk about each other is anything to go by, then our new settlement is going to be a rough ride. Marie McBain picks up the keynote from Martin McGuinness’s profoundly misleading description of Paisley’s Free Presbyterian Church as the Taleban and Jeffrey Donaldson’s ‘battle a day’ remark:
“I have seen Ian Paisley engage with people in a warm way, including with the catholic Archbishop Sean Brady.” But he warns: “I can’t see that happening in the early stages with Sinn Fein leaders.” Rather, Donaldson warns that when the two sides eventually do get into coalition with each other, “It will be a battle a day: no love lost and no quarter given”.
It’s theme ably (if briefly) tricked out by Máirtín Ó Muilleoir in Comment is Free (even if he rather capriciously ascribes to all Nationalists a single attitude):
Nationalists weren’t terribly fond of the war but, post-conflict, rightly or wrongly, they’re full of admiration for those who fought it. Which isn’t necessarily fair but then this is war and peace not politics.
Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty