Important: this post is in no way to suggest that Theresa May or anyone else should not speak to or work with Martin McGuinness or any other Sinn Fein representative. It’s about hypocrisy.
The Tory rags – I won’t link to them, but you know the usual suspects – have been attacking Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn for his decision to hire ex-Sinn Fein London staffer Jayne Fisher.
In an article earlier today, I highlighted the hypocrisy of the hysterical ‘shock and anger’ briefed by some members of the Labour right at the appointment – and, in passing, that of the Tories given that Thatcher and other Tory Prime Ministers met not just with Sinn Fein but with representatives of the IRA itself.
But the hypocrisy of the Tory ‘news’ media has a much more recent basis. Current Tory Prime Minister Theresa May has been meeting and working with one of Sinn Fein’s most senior figures: Martin McGuinness. Here is Mr McGuinness, the first identifiable person on the right of the table, in a room with May and numerous Tories recently:
And rightly so. Mr McGuinness is deputy First Minister of the Northern Ireland Assembly and Northern Ireland will be deeply affected by Brexit and so he has been involved with planning for that event.
No blame attaches to Mrs May for this (though of course her hands are dirty in many other ways), nor to her Northern Ireland Secretary James Brokenshire. We are no longer in the 70s or 80s, much as she, her party and the Tory media might wish it.
But the close – but of course not uncritical – involvement between the Tories and Martin McGuinness certainly casts a stark light on the absolute hypocrisy of the media that support Theresa May and her party and who are more than willing to portray far less as damning if it provides an opportunity to smear Jeremy Corbyn.
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