I, too, hope that what we are seeing is the start of a new and peaceful era
in Northern Ireland. It seems that those involved in the negotiation proces
have had the courage to admit that the notions of "victory" and "defeat"
(which have been used by self-seeking politicians of both persuasions in
order to further their careers) must be abandoned if any settlement is to be
They now have an even bigger task: to persuade those who have been brought
up to hate their neighbour because s/he is Catholic/Protestant (whilst
paradoxically affirming adherence to a religion one of whose basic tenets is
to love one's neighbour).
It's a big challenge.