Sudden death of former IRA leader turned peacemaker Martin McGuinness

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Sinn Fein flickr
Martin McGuinness

FORMER deputy first minister in Northern Ireland, Martin McGuinness has died at the age of 66 due to complications with a rare heart disease.

After a turbulent early life when he was an active member of the IRA, Martin McGuinness eventually eschewed all forms of violence and campaigned for peace and a democratic process of government in Northern Ireland.

Having resigned from his position of deputy first minister just two months ago as a protest about an energy scandal, he effectively brought down the power sharing government and forced a new election which almost saw his Sinn Fein become the largest party in Stormont.

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It came as a considerable surprise when the two behemoths of Northern Irish politics, the Protestant Ian Paisley of the Democratic Unionist Party and the Catholic McGuinness were able to bury some of their differences and sit together in Stormont in 2007 but they did manage to work together.

Always determined that Northern Ireland should be part of the Irish Republic, he worked as hard to be a peacemaker as he did to be an active member of the IRA but not all will forgive him.

It is a thin-line between being a freedom fighter or a terrorist and often the winning side decides which a person was, but in this case, history will perhaps choose to view his later actions as outweighing his earlier ones.

2 COMMENTS

  1. I’m beside myself with disgust, and astonished at the headline grabbing liberal do-gooder EX powers that be. How on Earth can they possibly justify trying to paint him as anything other than the Evil, conniving, terrorist that he was. Its a well known fact amongst those who know the truth that he did NOT turn to peace, he was dragged kicking and screaming into it. After decades of trying to bomb, shoot and blackmail the British government out of Northern Ireland, they were beaten. He and Adams had no option other than to turn to legitimate Politics, if they didn’t they were to be killed along with their families by their own people. So the cowards (instead of sticking to their principles) changed their spotted coats for stripes. That was the only way they could stay alive and keep some control over their racketeering, drugs operations and prostitution businesses…(yes, the real reason for the modern day IRA) THIS is the truth.. THESE are the facts known to thousands of NI residents… THIS is how history MUST remember McGuinness. We have a duty to the hundreds of murdered innocent British to ensure it.

  2. I agree entirely Steve. Leopards don’t change their spots and violent men don’t really change either. Martin McGuinness simply morphed into an actor, and not a very good one at that. Most of us could see right through him. Unfortunately most of our politicians couldn’t, whichever side of the Irish Question they were on. Ironic that Sinn Fein are now more powerful than ever before and within sight of a majority in Northern Ireland at some point in the future, partly due to McGuinness.

    Sadly a lot of his secrets have died with him, but thanks Steve for speaking out and speaking the truth.

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