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  1. #1
    JohnD66 JohnD66 is offline

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    Irish Civil War Conference in Athlone 23 November 2013

    A report on proceedings here for those interested;

    A Report of the Athlone Irish Civil War Conference 23 November 2013 | The Irish Story

    Among the highlights:

    John Regan argued that the destruction of the Public Record Office in the Four Courts had become a propaganda tool with which to attack militant republicanism but that there was no firm evidence to show that it was deliberately blown up by the anti-Treatyites.

    John Burke discussed the politics of the Treaty and civil war in the midlands, showing how the 'pact' in 1922 was in fact, not broken by the pro-Treatyites as their opponents tended to claim. In 1923 the anti-Treatyites did much better in the August election than they had in 1922 in the midlands. Partly due to better vote management but also perhaps because the 1922 election understimated their strenth.

    Ian Kenneally spoke about the military events in the midland region, including seven executions, 5 in Athlone and 2 in Mulingar.

    Patrick Murray discussed the role of the Catholic Chruch in the conflict showing that the Irish Bishops were vocally pro-Treaty but about 20% of the clergy defied their wishes and supported the republicans. The Vatican disapproved of the Bishops' stance and did not recognise the Free State until 1929. they thought the anti-Treatyites were 'more pious men'.

    Ann Mathews discussed the experiences of the 600 plus republican women interned durign the Civil War, arguing that they were contrary to their claims, treated better than the men.

    John Borgonovo tried to explain the anti-Treaty IRA defeat in military terms, ascribing it to their inability to transition from a guerrilla army to a more conventional force.

    Bill Kissane located the civil war in wider European experience i nthe wake of the Great War while Gavin Foster discussed the popular and family memory of the conflict.
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  2. #2
    Balaclava Balaclava is offline

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    Although probably not deliberate, the destruction of the Public Record Office fits within the pattern of destruction of the Custom House, local tax offices, local RIC barracks, the burning of the big houses of the Anglo-Irish landlords and decades later the bombing Nelson's Pillar and the demolition of parts of Georgian Dublin.
    It was part of a ideological break with the colonial past.

    The behavior of the Black and Tans and the "Green and Tans" the National Army bears comparison with behavior of the German Freikorps who crushed German Communist uprisings and other reactionary forces that crushed uprisings across Europe as empires broke up.

    The Anti-Treaty IRA had not prospect of winning the Civil War and by the end of the conflict the war resembled a blood feud.
    Last edited by Balaclava; 28th November 2013 at 03:55 PM.
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  3. #3
    FakeViking FakeViking is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnD66 View Post
    A report on proceedings here for those interested
    Thank you for posting that report, that period of our history is normally glossed over yet deserves much further attention.
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  4. #4
    JohnD66 JohnD66 is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by FakeViking View Post
    Thank you for posting that report, that period of our history is normally glossed over yet deserves much further attention.
    Thanks, for more on the Civil War see here.

    The Irish Story Archive on the Irish Civil war | The Irish Story
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  5. #5
    turdsl turdsl is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnD66 View Post
    Thanks, for more on the Civil War see here.

    The Irish Story Archive on the Irish Civil war | The Irish Story
    Thanks yourself,very interesting and Fair,Thats the first i heard of that conference.
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  6. #6
    shutuplaura shutuplaura is offline
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    Sounds really interesting. Did Murray explain how he arrived at a figure of 20% of clergy supporting the treaty? Also, Dan Breen's visits to the Farmer's Party offices. Did they claim intimidation or is that a theory?. I wouldn't put it past him but he also was never particularly bloodthirsty during the Civil War.
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  7. #7
    Analyzer Analyzer is offline
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    The Irish Civil War was a massive tragedy, and in many ways the first mistake created upon getting rid of the British. It set the tone for decades, with infighting, squabbling and gombeenism suddely running rife in Irish society. Both sides owe the Irish people an apology. In particular the holier than thou element which owned much of the real estate in the country, and seemed pre-occupied with putting a lid on more radical elements in the lower orders, who also wanted a different Ireland to what Ireland had become under British rule.

    Lloyd George probably wanted a civil war in Ireland - but the people involved made it far too easy for him.
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  8. #8
    devoutcapitalist devoutcapitalist is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by Analyzer View Post
    The Irish Civil War was a massive tragedy, and in many ways the first mistake created upon getting rid of the British. It set the tone for decades, with infighting, squabbling and gombeenism suddely running rife in Irish society. Both sides owe the Irish people an apology. In particular the holier than thou element which owned much of the real estate in the country, and seemed pre-occupied with putting a lid on more radical elements in the lower orders, who also wanted a different Ireland to what Ireland had become under British rule.

    Lloyd George probably wanted a civil war in Ireland - but the people involved made it far too easy for him.
    Fianna Fail mainly owe the country an apology as It was the anti treaty side that decided to take up arms against the Provisional Free State Government in an unnecessary Civil War that was unwinnable and caused unnecessary divisions in Irish society as well as widespread destruction of property and the economy.
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  9. #9
    DrNightdub DrNightdub is offline

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    Quote Originally Posted by shutuplaura View Post
    Also, Dan Breen's visits to the Farmer's Party offices. Did they claim intimidation or is that a theory?
    Think Breen said in My Fight for Irish Freedom that he successfully "persuaded" one candidate to step down but that another wouldn't budge. Breen wasn't alone though - an article by Michael Gallagher in IHS, The "Pact" General Election of 1922 gives instances of intimidation from various counties, some successful, some not.
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  10. #10
    oggy oggy is offline
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    If the split to pro and anti had not happened how would the country have managed with what would been effectively a one party State. I suspect the split was planned without the violence that followed and I believe the pro people who actually fought were hijacked by those who were the already in place establishment.
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