Thatcher funeral fitting tribute to political giant - press
UK: The funeral of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher
transcended the bitter row over her legacy and was an appropriate
tribute to a woman whose radical vision permanently changed Britain,
newspapers said Thursday.
Queen Elizabeth II led mourners from the British establishment and
170 countries in bidding farewell to the Iron Lady, in a funeral
brimming with military pageantry and pockets of protests.
"R.I.P. Mrs T", said the headline of popular tabloid The Sun at the
bottom of a double-page photograph showing military pallbearers carrying
Thatcher's coffin into London's St Paul's Cathedral. "They came in their
thousands to mark the passing of a political giant," said its leading
"But most of all they came to deliver a simple message. Despite all
the pomp and circumstance, at the end of the day she was always one of
The Daily Mail, a staunch Thatcher supporter, carried a picture of
the former leader's daughter, Carol, in tears with the words "Goodbye
Mummy" written beneath.
Its editorial called the day a "magnificent finale befitting the
Lady" in which "the huge majority of the British people...gave her in
death the honour and gratitude she so richly deserved in life". The
Times, owned by Thatcher backer Rupert Murdoch, had a wrap-around front
cover of the funeral cortege and carried a glowing eulogy inside.
"The country lays to rest not just a major stateswoman but also the
conflict of her era," said its editorial.
"It is worth noting not how much of her legacy divides the nation,
but how much unites it." The paper said that only "governments of
historic significance" permanently alter perceptions, and argued
Thatcher had achieved this as few in British politics today supported a
return to nationalised utilities. "The main parties differ markedly on
their attitudes to labour market regulation but nobody wants to go back
to the circumstances of the winter of 1978," it added.