The sectarian nature of the extreme attack by Tory politicians and mainstream media journalists (and it is genuinely difficult to tell which is which) on Jeremy Corbyn over alleged IRA links is extremely troubling. Not one MSM journalist or Tory has even acknowledged the existence of loyalist terrorists or British government atrocities, either by secret agents or in events like Bloody Sunday or the murders of Pat Finucane or Peter McBride. Yes, IRA atrocities were appalling. But they were by no means the only ones, and the Troubles arose from centuries of colonial injustice.
One reason this Tory attack does not have great traction is that everyone under 40 is more likely to have learnt a great deal of truth from the excellent film In the Name of the Father, than to have experienced the violence on both sides. The failure of the media in this election, while constantly raising the Troubles, to mention the Birmingham Six or the Guildford Four – for both of which Corbyn campaigned – does not stop people knowing those terrible abuses of state power happened. I speak as someone whose office windows were shattered by an IRA mortar.
So after all this truly dreadful Tory attempt to slit open old wounds to hold power, would it not be the most delicious irony, in the event of a hung parliament, if Sinn Fein finally took up their Westminster seats, in order to make up the numbers to support Jeremy Corbyn into Number 10?
We could have the most wonderful Labour/Nationalist coalition of the working class and the oppressed peoples of the islands – Labour/SNP/Sinn Fein/Plaid Cymru. And Caroline Lucas.
I do not in the least expect this to happen. But I am rather hopeful this post has severely annoyed some old Tories.