Revenge is final act for Paisley

Posted By: January 26, 2014

John Coulter. Irish Daily Star ( DUBLIN). JANUARY 20, 2014

For it is written, Vengence is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.

In this case, the immortal piece of Biblical Christian advice provided in Romans
Chapter 12 should refer to ex-First Minister and DUP boss Ian Paisley, now Lord

Tonight’s (Monday) second part of the ‘double whammy’ against the DUP by Paisley
senior is expected to lift the lid on the normally ultra-secret world of the
hardline fundamentalist Free Presbyterian Church.

Big Ian founded his breakaway sect in 1951, two decades before he launched the DUP
after double-jobbing in Stormont and Westminster.

It is not just the star of the Paisley dynasty which has crashed and burned, but the
denomination he founded, commonly dubbed ‘the Free P’s’.

Even though the Free P’s only had about 16,000 members out of one million Northern
Protestants, the Paisley-led sect once enjoyed an iron-fist grip on the DUP.

The price for deposing Paisley as First Minister, DUP chief and Free P Moderator was
to confine the sect to the insignificant fringes of Protestantism.

Tonight’s BBC programme is also expected to confirm the very strong influence which
Paisley’s wife, Eileen, had on the Big Man.

She was in politics as a Belfast councillor long before Big Ian clinched his
Stormont Bannside seat.

For years, she penned a column in the influential Revivalist magazine, the Free P’s
official organ. The Free Church was often branded the DUP at prayer.

The depth of perceived betrayal among the Free P faction of the DUP at Big Ian,
first signing the St Andrews Agreement, and then entering a power-sharing Executive
with the Shinners and launching the highly successful ‘Chuckle Brothers’ routine
with Sinn Féin’s Marty McGuinness, should never be underestimated.

In a theological ‘Night of the Long Knives’, Paisley senior was deposed.

Well before these two programmes on Paisley were aired, it was suspected the content
would be the Lord’s revenge on those who had forced him out of church leadership.

And that’s why the DUP delegation poured cold water on the Haass agenda. Agree to
Haass, and the party would suffer the same fate as Davy Trimble’s UUP for signing up
to the Good Friday Agreement.

The DUP could never get round Protestant victims groups’ opposition to dead IRA men
being equal to innocent civilians murdered by republican terrorists.

And there was no way the DUP could sell to loyalism that IRA terrorists should be
given immunity for details about unsolved Provo killings.

It was the UUP agreeing to the early release of terrorist inmates as part of the
Good Friday Agreement which finally sealed the party’s decline.

Top DUP negotiator wee Jeffrey Donaldson had seen this pitfall when he was in the
UUP; he did not want to walk the DUP into the same trap which befell Trimble, and as
we will see tonight befell Paisley.

Perhaps, too, we will see with Baroness Eileen tonight an example of hell hath no
fury like a woman scorned?

> Fr. Sean Mc Manus