87% of people in the north-east of Ireland who voted in favour of the United Kingdom withdrawing from the European Union in 2016 would willingly jeopardise the Irish-British peace process in order to achieve their goal. That is one of several depressing statistics from a new study, This Other Eden: Brexit, England and the Future of the Tory Party, by the University of Edinburgh and Cardiff University, using polling work carried out by YouGov in the UK and Lucid Talk in the Six Counties. The comprehensive survey found a similar weight of opinion among Leave voters in Britain, where 83% of respondents in England, 75% in Scotland and 87% in Wales were prepared to risk a return of the Troubles, of violent political conflict, if it meant a successful implementation of Brexit.
The largest bloc of voters who apparently place isolationism before peace are to be found among supporters of the Democratic Unionist Party and other pro-union groups in the British outpost on the island of Ireland, and among supporters of the Conservative Party and the United Kingdom Independence Party in Britain. Which perhaps explains the DUP’s determined advocacy of a “blood red” Brexit and its belief that it can use the process of UK-EU separation to return the Six Counties to their partitioned, unionist-dominated past.