In an appearance on the BBC in the wake of the death of Martin McGuinness, Conservative politician Norman Tebbit called the former IRA leader “a coward.” Tebbit added that the world is “a sweeter and cleaner place,” now that McGuiness has died.
During a separate interview with Good Morning Britain, Tebbit said:
It’s not merely these creatures [the Brighton bombers] crippled my wife, but they also murdered five of my friends. I only hope that his death will help to bring some sort of closure to those families and friends of whose murder he’s accomplished.
Tebbit added that he hoped McGuinness is “parked in a particularly hot and unpleasant corner of hell.”
During the 1984 Conservative Party Conference at the Grand Hotel in Brighton, an IRA bomb killed five people and injured more than 50. Among the injured was Tebbit, and his wife, Margaret, who was left paralyzed. Tebbit says that he suffered from a slight limp as a result and that his life was saved because a mattress fell on him.
While the daughter of Conservative politician Sir Anthony Berry, who died in the Brighton bombing, tweeted:
Tebbit would leave politics in 1987 in order to care for his wife. In October 2014, Tebbit’s former special advisor, Michael Dobbs, wrote in the Daily Telegraph that in the wake of the bombing, “Thirty years on, I still can’t be in the same room as Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness.”
Meanwhile, in April 2014, Tebbit was quoted by the BBC, in reference to McGuinness attending a banquet hosted by the Queen, “There’s always the possibility that a member of the Real IRA will be so outraged by Mr McGuinness bowing to the Queen that they might shoot him in the back for it. We can but hope.”
You can see more reactions to McGuinness’s death here:
McGuinness had resigned his post as First Deputy Minister in Northern Ireland in January 2017. The Irish Times reported at the time that he had been suffering from amyloidosis. Following that report, McGuinness argued that the Irish Times had violated his family’s privacy.
The disease happens when an abnormal protein, amyloid, builds up in the body. It is extremely rare. The amyloid can build up in a person’s heart, kidneys, liver, spleen, nervous system and digestive tract. The Mayo Clinic says there is no cure for the condition.
The former IRA commander had been diagnosed with a rare disease in January 2017.