The origins of distrust between unionists and the Tories…

I know some senior Tories are finding it difficult to take the raw aggression being shown them by certain commentators (not to mention commenters on this site)… Eric Waugh has useful historic context for the distrust between ‘unionist’ parties and GB based parties of the union, with which he concludes:

Carson knew the Stormont set-up was merely a device to keep the unruly statelet at arm’s length in the thinly-disguised hope that union with it would soon be broken. The depth of the unionist chagrin over the Anglo-Irish Agreement in 1985 confirmed how slowly the truth of Carson’s prognosis dawned.

That agreement — giving Dublin governments a toe in the door for the first time — is important at this moment because it was a Tory Prime Minister, a |self-confessed unionist, who signed it. One heard the old Arab adage quoted that it was better to be an enemy of the British because then they would buy you. If you were merely a friend, they would sell you.

To this day, the unionist people are to be heard referring to this territory as ‘this country’. Of course, it is not a ‘country’ in any sense — but the label is revealing of that historic detachment which lies at the heart of the current difficulty dividing the Ulster Unionist Party.


Discover more from Slugger O'Toole

Subscribe to get the latest posts sent to your email.

Categories Uncategorised

We are reader supported. Donate to keep Slugger lit!

For over 20 years, Slugger has been an independent place for debate and new ideas. We have published over 40,000 posts and over one and a half million comments on the site. Each month we have over 70,000 readers. All this we have accomplished with only volunteers we have never had any paid staff.

Slugger does not receive any funding, and we respect our readers, so we will never run intrusive ads or sponsored posts. Instead, we are reader-supported. Help us keep Slugger independent by becoming a friend of Slugger. While we run a tight ship and no one gets paid to write, we need money to help us cover our costs.

If you like what we do, we are asking you to consider giving a monthly donation of any amount, or you can give a one-off donation. Any amount is appreciated.