Hysterical reaction of British left to DUP is simplistic and naive
Arlene Foster is portrayed as a unionist ogre - but that’s to ignore history
DUP leader Arlene Foster, signs a book of condolence for Martin McGuinness. Photograph: Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty
The surprising thing is that people are surprised when the Conservatives play the Orange card – that historic shorthand for British politicians using Irish unionism to further their own political agenda. We have been here before often enough, not least that episode from Irish history 100 years ago when the Tories decided the Orange card was the one to play to frustrate legitimate nationalist aspirations towards Home Rule.
The only thing odd about the card being played this time is that the aim is not to frustrate Home Rule – though it might have a knock-on effect on Stormont Rule – but to shore up the Conservative Party in Westminster.