With news of Lady Thatcher’s demise now pretty much everywhere, people all over the Anglophone world and elsewhere have added their two  cents to  Thatcher’s legacy. One of the most interesting in my opinion was what Gerry Adams, TD for Louth and president of Sinn Fein, had this to say:

Looking over it again, I think it helps to understand the broader Irish republican stance when Ireland (and especially Northern Ireland) is conceived of as the first artificial nation state.

forged from the enclave of protestant settlers in the north of the island, republicanism faced an uphill battle for legitimacy, and also for the rights of Catholics in an otherwise predominately Catholic island. Adams himself speaks very eloquently that he felt he was born into a state that neither wanted nor needed his existence to continue.

Regardless of the death and destruction caused on either side of the Troubles, Adam’s complaint that Thatcher’s defense of ‘freedom’ in the western world rings a little hollow in Ireland. Perhaps if she had been more willing to let her government engage with the population she would have saved several thousand people their lives.

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