Since 21 years, Good Friday was a symbol of hope for Northern Ireland. After decades of violence, an agreement created the basis for peace between the Protestant Unionists and the Catholics, who would rather live in a united Ireland.
The fact that this peace has since largely held is one of the great achievements of politics. All sides have contributed, although there were always crises. So there is currently no own Northern Ireland regional government.
Good Friday 2019 is a day of mourning. A woman has been shot. She wanted to report on a police action in which the security forces were looking for weapons. The goal of the action was a terrorist split in Ireland.
Security forces were looking for the group said to be responsible for bomb attacks in the recent past. Although the terrorists are only a tiny minority in the province.
But to cause mischief, a majority has never been needed anywhere. The threat to peace in Northern Ireland has once again become clear.
At best, it justifies a certain hope that the entire political spectrum of Northern Ireland, organized in parties, has unanimously condemned the murder.
Unfortunately, one can not be sure that cohesion will be maintained should the political and economic consequences of Brexit hit Northern Ireland.
The popular request, particularly in England, to quit the European Union, had no majority in Northern Ireland in 2016. There, people knew what they had about the EU.
Even for tough unionists, the prospect of a “hard” border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland is not tempting.
But in view of the abysmal political trenches in London, it would be no wonder that in Northern Ireland too, party-political narrow-mindedness was placed above the interests of the country.
Christians around the world celebrate the resurrection festival two days after Good Friday. In Northern Ireland, this year’s fear is hoping.