1916 Rising and how it inspired me 78 years later.

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There are a lot of pieces going around today looking back at the Rising and its subsequent impact on the direction of Irish politics. But, I wanted to tell a different story of how the Rising inspired me and impacted on my future direction and beliefs. I don’t claim that this story is indicative of anything, other than my own political values, nor do I believe it is more valuable than other stories, which I hope commentators will share in the comments section below. This is just my story, of learning about the Rising and how it has impacted on me.

In 1994, I was six years of age, taking the annual family visit to Dublin to do some Christmas shopping. We would always take in the sights and do the normal things that people did on a weekend trip, but for me this visit was different. Being so young, I was aware but didn’t really understand what was going on in Ireland at that time. My parents typically tried to play down the soldiers on the streets and news reports of bombs (I was always the child in family who questioned everything).

But, on this trip to Dublin, my Dad decided to break at least one of the taboos and tell me the story about the Easter Rising. Here, I should mention something about him, a diehard Republican with a love of Irish history, who in his twenties met an English lady (my mother) and settled down. This contradiction is something that still provides a great source of slagging from me to this day.

This visit to Dublin stands out for me, as I remember him taking just me and none of my siblings.

We began with the GPO, as he regaled me with the words of the proclamation and where it was read out to the people, my imagination wondered trying to visualise it all. He told me about the bravery of men who withstood shelling from the British for a week straight and the now infamous story of James Connolly’s execution. Fully animated at this stage, my Dad had even been able to gain the interest of some American tourists, who like me were hanging off his every word.

While many of the minor details of the event escape me now, remembering him putting my fingers in the bullet holes along the columns outside the GPO will be a lasting memory for me.

This event because I shared it with someone I cared about, ignited my love of Ireland and my path towards Republicanism. Gradually over the years, I learned more about the Rising and its consequences, and while I naturally departed somewhat from the ardently pro-1916 view that my father had, it was this experience that instilled in me the idea that everybody no matter what they did or who they were should be able to participate in the running of a nation.

I did not embrace Republicanism, out of hatred or a fear of someone else. Rather, it was a love of something and being totally captivated by its ideals and hopes. I am a Republican, because I believe that this form of government can deliver progress and prosperity for all of our people.

The 1916 Rising inspired my Dad, who then passed on his passion to me. That for me while it’s not recorded in any history book is a huge part of its legacy. The values that still guide me today began to take shape by hearing this story.

Other people have their own stories, I am sure that people reading this could recall a similar experience. But, as I pause to think about the Rising and what it means to me, I cannot get away from that day with my father in 1994. This is my story and I thought I would share it with you all today. I would love to hear yours.

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  • http://fitzjameshorselooksattheworld.wordpress.com/ fitzjameshorse1745

    Its always good to have a father who points out History. I can certainly identify with that walking around Belfast with my father in the early 1960s pointing out the spot where Henry Joy McCracken was executed (I still cant think about that without thinking of the digital clock at the Ulster bank in Cornmarket….circa 1962 a digital clock was the ultimate in sophistication), the alleyways off Ann Street where the conspiratorial United Irishmen met and (as my father observed) “dont take oaths ….informers lurk in the shadows” and St Marys Church donated by Belfast Presbyterians to the Catholic community.
    Specifically I see 1916 thru the prism of 1966 when I was 13 going on 14 and my horizons were spreading from Primary School and a mixed street in West Belfast to a Grammar School and the skpecifically catholic-nationalist streets like the “Crimea” and “Clonard ” streets and new protocols.
    In the mixed street the Orangemen from Sandy Row picked up their Lodge Master,, British flags flew, and we did not play football or make noise on Sunday …respect for our neighbours.
    A Catholic neighbour felt emboldened to play some rebel songs with the doors open…full volume and we all thought it was bit tacky.
    The protocol in the Catholic streets was different.
    Visiting there to meet my grammar school friends there was an awareness that there was a secret world. Reporting back to my father that there were cool porttraits of Pearse and Kevin Barry…my father would have known their fathers….men from the 1940s.
    These men were accorded a certain respect on Falls Road.
    They had sacrificed a lot…or so it was perceived…had been interned in the 1940s 1950s and had lost employment opportunities and so on.
    There was I think respect at the futility of it all….nothing to be gained by doing that.
    And of course these guys were often assocaited with other things….music, language, GAA, Church.

    I think 1966 is a kinda turning point where the Secret World became more open.
    The Belfast events being organised by these 1940s Men…and indeed within five years, most would add their weight to the “new” Conflict.
    And thats how I remember it.
    A boastful schoolteacher (a Dubliner) telling us he was there. I believed him then and Im skeptical now.
    A special edition of the Sunday Press….with a Timeline of Easter Week, biographies of the Executed, survivor stories….all good Irish Stuff. cant remember much about it now but I guess it included stiuff by Sean Lemass and others.
    Stirring stuff.
    And the parade on the Falls Road….that secret world revealing itself. The younger brother of my best friend wearing a GAA shirt, heading it. (He is now a highly respected public figure…NOT a politician) and a certain awareness that men I had known all my life had come out of the shadows.
    People might find it offensive that they were seen as self sacrificing and failures.
    And thats a curiosity …that their successors in the 1970s arguably succeeded and are not held as martyrs except in their own world and only the Hunger Strikers get “respect”.

    Did the Men of 1916 “free” most of Ireland and partition it?
    Should they have waited?
    What would have panned out over the next two decades?
    On balance I am proud of the nation that Ireland became…neutral with the best ethos (rarely achieved).
    But frankly this is where I am now….a grandfather approaching 62….and It raises a smile to think that a young man in his 20s is very definitive about how he thinks of the Easter Rising….because my own views have evolved and will continue to do so.

  • Mainland Ulsterman

    Nice story David, nicely told – even if the legacy of the Easter Rising is considerably less nice for Northern Ireland.

    I wish I could add a story but despite being a republican myself, I have never felt inspired by the Easter Rising. It established that combo of high-sounding liberal rhetoric with vicious anti-British violence for which we all know and love Irish Republicanism. I don’t think it has much constructive to say about sharing these islands and mutual British-Irish respect.

  • Comrade Stalin

    I try to avoid showing disrespect to the traditions that are held by people. But conflicts are inevitable.

    Looked at from a modern perspective, the leaders of the Rising in 1916 were unelected, had no mandate and no support. They were barely competent, a fact reflected in the botched, rushed nature of the rising which was doomed to disaster by the failure of the leaders to secure Trinity and Dublin Castle. People died and property was destroyed. Patrick Pearse was a madman whose views about spilling blood, religion and war may, in the modern day context, find expression in videos produced by Al Quaida.

    To grant legitimacy to the Rising is to grant legitimacy to the Ulster Volunteers, another organization which was established not only to overthrow Parliament but also to undermine the democratic will of the Irish people. I am not sure how to square that circle and I haven’t yet heard any Irish republican make a convincing attempt to do so.

    It is claimed that the leaders of the Rising knew that they would lose and knew that the British would execute them which would lead to a public backlash; but I doubt this. The mandate for the Home Rule Party showed that people put their faith in using parliamentary democracy to secure their future.

    The Rising itself only gains relevance when set against the events which occurred after it, when a military campaign which did have a mandate (albeit a flawed one) was conducted and was ultimately mostly successful. It is no more than a matter of academic interest at this point as to whether or not the war of independence would have occurred had the British stuck to criminal procedure, with no death sentence, for those who organized the Rising.

  • Mick Fealty

    Good to see someone approach the subject in a non doctrinaire human way. For those struggling to figure Easter from an Irish Republican pov, think Henry V in Act IV Scene iii 18–67.

  • http://fitzjameshorselooksattheworld.wordpress.com/ fitzjameshorse1745

    Well as Ive always said, nationalism thrives on grievance and whether in 1649, 1690, 1798, 1916 (and the 1970s) the British can always be relied upon.
    Was an Irish Republic entitled to the loyalty of every Irishman and Woman, as the proclamation had stated?
    Well for those of us who think Irish is a nationality and not merely an ethnic label….and one of those “Im Irish too” things “or I have multiple identities” as unionists and others say….then I say it has mine.

    Whether it would have in 1916?….no mandate and all that….well clearly the British were lying to somebody in 1914-1918.
    Ultimately nationalism is about creating differences and in allying us with the Germans in 1916, that was a key difference that cost the leaders their lives.
    And Im grateful to them.

  • Gopher

    @ Mick If only that were true. Everyone knows Henry V is the British equivalent of Goebbel’s Kolberg, pure propaganda. Nobody is going to go out a sack Calais after watching a rendition at the Royal Shakespeare. It is hilarious all those hack luvies trying to elevate the piece from a nationalist jingo work to something bordering on intellectual.

    Nope the Irish Republican view has not be consigned to the reality Henry V exists in.

  • Mick Fealty

    Have you seen ‘The Olden Days’ by Ian Hislop? Well grounded rather than learned, but robust defence defence of ‘making stuff up’…

    See also:http://sluggerotoole.com/2013/03/08/digitallunch-history-storytelling-or-propaganda/

  • http://fitzjameshorselooksattheworld.wordpress.com/ fitzjameshorse1745

    I think critics of any form of nationalism always say “its making stuff up” (just look at Scotland this year and the smug reaction from the Establishment to Gogglebox).
    In compiling a case for nationalism, anywhere….its not so much “making things up” as “sexing up the dossier” (to borrow a phrase from another context)

  • Mick Fealty

    By which older, rooted values get translated into new actions… Or is the past really only about the past or recasting the shape of the future?

  • Gopher

    Never seen it. A Frenchman actually summed it up correctly for events like Easter 16 and others that British history is littered with.

    “C’est magnifique, mais ce n’est pas la guerre: c’est de la folie”

    The Light Brigade is now immortalized in verse but until 1916 across Europe it was immortalized in deed until people decided war was a serious endeavour.

  • antamadan

    Comrade Stalin, Pearse was a man of his time; no more bloodthirsty than the British that were keen as mustard on all the imperial wars, and the’ King’s and Kaiser’s’ WW1. Poor old Home Ruler Redmond contributed a lot more deaths than Pears after the Brits demanded soldiers in return for sticking with the latest ever-reducing home rule bill.

  • ayeYerMa

    Quelle surprise, the Comrade lives up to his totalitarian namesake by not liking people standing up for their own self-determination. The 1912 Covenant and 1913 Proclaimation was a masterpiece in diplomacy.. One poorly imitated in 1916 with murder and mayhem.

    How, dearest dictator, did you think the Whigs came to give Westminster its authority in the first place during the time of Glorious Revolution?

  • Greenflag

    Comrade Stalin ,

    ‘Looked at from a modern perspective, the leaders of the Rising in 1916 were unelected, had no mandate and no support. ”

    True . Neither were the leaders in 1798 nor indeed any ‘rebels ‘ in Irish history ‘ either before or after .Nor for that matter were the UVF leaders who imported arms from Britain’s enemy .

    ‘ Patrick Pearse was a madman whose views about spilling blood, religion and war may, in the modern day context, find expression in videos produced by Al Quaida.’

    A poor choice of words CS and one which takes away from any of your post’s credibility . Instead of marching off to certain death like the millions of cannon fodder in the various Imperial Armies -he instead chose to fight in Dublin. Have a look at Simon Schama’s History of Britain as he relates how at the onset of war the unknowing millions could’nt wait to list .

    “It is claimed that the leaders of the Rising knew that they would lose and knew that the British would execute them which would lead to a public backlash; but I doubt this. ”

    The British Empire was the world’s superpower of the time ruling over one quarter of the globe and it’s peoples . I’m sure that the leaders knew that they would face execution but there was no way they could know of a public backlash . In time of war the British could do nothing else but what they did .

    “The mandate for the Home Rule Party showed that people put their faith in using parliamentary democracy to secure their future.”

    By 1916 anybody who had a brain knew that the British had promised both sides what they wanted -the problem being that both promises were incompatible with each other . Later history showed which promise was upheld and which was’nt .

    ‘ It is no more than a matter of academic interest at this point as to whether or not the war of independence would have occurred had the British stuck to criminal procedure, with no death sentence, for those who organized the Rising.”

    You mean treat the 1916 leaders as common criminals in the middle of a World War ?

    The later War of Independence post 1918 was lost by Britain not because of military force or the Black & Tans . It was lost simply due to the fact that the vast majority of the population boycotted the British Administration and it’s officials and set up an alternative administration to rule the country .

    Somebody above mentioned that Home Rule would have made Ireland a better and less divided country .- Ireland would have been just another Wales ? We can never know. . But it’s a reasonable scenario to envision that a Home Rule Ireland would not have been ‘neutral ‘ in WW2 and that many thousands more lives would have been lost as Dublin, Cork and east coast ports would have been bombed and the west coast blockaded by submarines .

    Belfast was bombed twice and over a thousand people were killed . A non neutral Ireland would have seen Belfast as well as Dublin bombed multiple times by the Luftwaffe with probably tens of thousands killed in both cities if not more .

    The 1916 Rising may have been a botched rebellion for all kinds of reasons and certainly a case can be made that Ireland today might be a different country if it had not been for 1916 .

    And it might- although I for one can’t imagine how it might be . Indeed I might not be here at all if the Luftwaffe had raised Dublin to the ground.

  • Gopher

    I think one can risk giving the Kamfgeschwaders just too much credit and Hitler too little. I’m not sure the spirit of the men of Easter 1916 would have protected the Republic in the event of a Nazi victory. The best the Republic could have hoped for would be home rule in a Nazi Alliance. that “home rule” would involve being a military client, whilst an Irish brigade on the Russian. Front would be a fantasy for some I can assure you it would have been a nightmare for more. Off course the Jewish population and whoever else would have to have been given up for deportation The men of 1916 did not guarantee The Republics neutrality nor did they preserve the state nor save anyone’s life, the forces of the Allies did.

  • Greenflag

    Gopher ,

    ‘I’m not sure the spirit of the men of Easter 1916 would have protected the Republic in the event of a Nazi victory.’

    Not sure ? What twilight zone do you reside in ? A nazi victory would presume a British defeat . A British defeat might or might not have included a German occupation of Britain . There were those around Hitler who would have preferred to leave Britain it’s empire while they had free rein to loot the European continent and anywhere else they could secure strategic resources such as oil etc .

    The Free State Army had orders in the event of a British ‘invasion ‘ to shoot over British heads in token resistance and then to surrender to force majeure . In the event of a German invasion their orders were to resist with whatever they had until the British could send in their forces to prevent a German occupation which could be tolerated by Britain as it would have cut off their supply lines to the USA .

    BTW WW2 began in 1939 by which time the leaders of the 1916 Rising were 23 years in their graves .

    President Higgins led the Easter Sunday commemorations for those whom Comrade Stalin refers to as ‘madmen ‘ :(

    http://www.rte.ie/news/2014/0420/609919-easter-rising/

    Belfasts two nights of bomb terror in 1941 is well documented as is the hopeless -incompetent response of it’s then government

    Heres a short excerpt on how the then NI Government ‘defended ‘ Northern Ireland against the Kamfgeschwaders of the Luftwaffe :(
    the full link below the excerpt .

    The Government of Northern Ireland lacked the will, energy and capacity to cope with a major crisis when it came. James Craig, Lord Craigavon, who was Prime Minister of Northern Ireland since its inception in 1921, until his death on 24 November 1940, had become senile.[3] Richard Dawson Bates, was the Home Affairs Minister. According to Sir Wilfred Spender, the cabinet secretary was “incapable of giving his responsible officers coherent directions on policy” – actually, he was drunk for most of each day. It appears that Sir Basil Brooke, the Minister of Agriculture, was the only active minister. He successfully busied himself with the task of making Northern Ireland a major supplier of food to Britain in her time of need.[4]

    John Clarke MacDermott, the Minister of Public Security, after the first bombing, initiated the “Hiram Plan” to evacuate the city and to return Belfast to ‘normality’ as quickly as possible. It was MacDermott who sent a telegram to de Valera seeking assistance. There was unease with the complacent attitude of the government, which led to resignations:

    John Edmond Warnock, the parliamentary secretary at the Ministry of Home Affairs, resigned from the Northern Ireland government on 25 May 1940. He said “I have heard speeches about Ulster pulling her weight but they have never carried conviction.” and “the government has been slack, dilatory and apathetic.”
    Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Robert Gisborne Gordon, Parliamentary and Financial Secretary at the Ministry of Finance (i.e. Chief Whip), resigned on 13 June 1940, explaining to the Commons that the government was “quite unfitted to sustain the people in the ordeal we have to face.”
    Lord Craigavon died on 24 November 1940. He was succeeded by John Miller Andrews, then 70 years old, who was no more capable of dealing with the situation than his predecessor. The minutes of his cabinet meetings show more discussion on protecting the bronze statue of Edward Carson than the provision of air-raid shelters. On 28 April 1943, six members of the Government threatened to resign, forcing him from office. He resigned on 1 May.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belfast_Blitz

  • Greenflag

    oops above sentence should read

    ‘to prevent a German occupation which could NOT be tolerated by Britain as it would have cut off their supply lines to the USA .’

    Other results of WW2

    Free State residents Victoria Crosses 9,
    Northern Ireland 1, ( and he was a Fenian )

    The Germans never bombed Belfast again for which some credit must go to De Valera .

  • Gopher

    Other results of WW2

    Free State residents Victoria Crosses 9,
    Northern Ireland 1, ( and he was an Irishman)

    It is reassuring to know that credit for the preservation of the Irish Republic is finally going to its correct place rather than the teeth whitening, cancer curing men of Easter 16

  • http://www.oldfaith.wordpress.com truthfinder

    Irish history is full of ironies that we all would be well advised to ponder rather than let emotions and myths cloud our judgment.

    The greatest irony is that it was the pope Adrian IV in 1155 who invited the Catholic English King Henry II in the Papal Bull Laudabiliter, to invade Ireland and to subjugate it so the church of Patrick would be brought under Roman Catholic Rule. Certainly some interesting side questions on papal infallibility there!!

    The other great myth is the existence of an “Irish nation” and a history monolithic “Irish people” ethnic group. Ireland before the British invasion was never a nation and never a people. Various kings and tribes ruled and inhabited the island. When they were not repelling the English they were murdering and plundering each other’s territory. The irony is that the island of Ireland have only once in its history been united under one sovereign system of governance – under the British! The rebels of 1916 only succeeded in destroying that.

  • Comrade Stalin

    ayeYerMa,

    Can you clarify for me – are you defending the self-determination as expressed by the 1916 rebels ?

  • Comrade Stalin

    Greenflag,

    Fair arguments. I will deal with them as I can, hopefully without omitting anything.

    Pearse was a man who embraced violence, wrote about it, and thought it necessary for Ireland to be properly considered a nation. By extension it seems clear that he wasn’t interested in pursuing any possible way to solve the matter peacefully or through the proper channels – accepting, of course, that many people at the time simply did not trust the British. There is a clear distinction between this and soldier-pragmatists such as Michael Collins who saw violence as a means to an end, to be abandoned when the cost became too high and/or when the first opportunity to do so presented itself.

    Ultimately, the bloodshed of the Rising and the subsequent war of independence achieved little that was not already on offer. It would take an expert or an academic to identify the material differences between the proposed state of Southern Ireland, and the Irish Free State, because on a casual comparison it certainly isn’t obvious to me. The effect of the period between 1916 and 1924 was that the British fought the IRA to a stalemate, and the split led to them wiping each other out to the point where they couldn’t mount a serious campaign any longer. Noting Lloyd George/Churchill’s threats to Collins that if he did not put down the Irregulars, the British would come in and do it for him.

    As for which promises were kept and which were not – the war of independence did not enhance this in favour of the Irish position by one inch. The people were divided even if the country as yet was not, and partition was inevitable. The British may have been conniving but had they forced all-Ireland Home Rule through the Irish civil war would have been a picnic in comparison to what would have happened – not least given all the defecting soldiers in the military garrisons around the country who would have thrown their lot in with the UVF and placed themselves outside of London’s control.

    The British Empire was the world’s superpower of the time ruling over one quarter of the globe

    I hear this statistic all the time. I was sure that adding up most of Africa, China, Russia and the Americas, as well as the rest of Western Europe, would not leave one quarter behind under British control. And was Australia really considered a British colony at that time ? Not germane to the discussion here, but thought I’d ask.

  • Greenflag

    Gopher ,

    Gopher a history book pun intended . Any basic Irish/British History for primary school will do . The Irish Republic only came into being in 1949 that would have been 5 years after WW2,

    As for

    “Northern Ireland 1, ( and he was an Irishman)”

    He was and a Fenian too .Just the wrong sort for Belfast City Council to recognise . Eventually they were forced to for fear of further embarrassment . Now had he been the ‘right ‘ sort of Ulsterman he’d have been dragged out and paraded around 3,000 Orange Order marches until he passed away .

    I suppose one could say that the 1916 Leaders by virtue of their rebellion did excise some of the ‘demons ‘ within the broad nationalist republican movement and let loose others . That in hindsight might have been a good thing -we’ll never know – We could have ended up with an island wide uncivil war as both returned Irish Home Rulers and Ulster Anti Home Rulers both ‘hoodwinked ‘ by HMG decided to fight for what they promised ?

    It’s unlikely HMG would have let them get on with it or would they ?

  • Greenflag

    ‘Irish history is full of ironies”

    Name me any country’s history that is’nt ?

    ‘The greatest irony is that it was the pope Adrian IV in 1155 who invited the Catholic English King Henry II in the Papal Bull Laudabiliter, to invade Ireland and to subjugate it so the church of Patrick would be brought under Roman Catholic Rule. Certainly some interesting side questions on papal infallibility there!!’

    Ancient history in post Catholic Ireland 2014 totally irrelevant .Haven’t you heard .The only people who believe in papal infallibilty in Ireland are the deceased or the very elderly and cognitively challenged or demented back street bush baptist sectaries who still feel the need to have a whore of Babylon to keep the collection plate full .

    “The other great myth is the existence of an “Irish nation” and a history monolithic “Irish people” ethnic group.”

    You are again living in the past . Modern day anthropologists and the advances and DNA sequencing bio scientists tell us that the vast majority of people in Ireland and Britain owe the bulk of their ancestry to the megalithic stone age peoples who inhabited these islands between 7,000 and 9,000 years ago . All the ‘invaders ‘ vikings , saxons , normans , celts , romans etc left their mark in terms of culture and language and art but their contribution everywhere was that of a minority albeit influential minorities in their time .

    ‘ Ireland before the British invasion was never a nation and never a people.’

    Neither was Britain before the Roman invasion nor was it after nor was it ever until Britannia Incorporated was established in 1707 when North Britain (formerly Scotland ) was bailed out of national bankruptcy and forced over a cash handout to accept Westminster Rule -Go read your Robbie Burns .

    You see too much irony where others see naked power grabs and the tyranny of despots . Britain too was ruled by a plethora of thugs and robber barons and even under the Normans the various regions were beaten into submission after 1066 . The virtual ‘genocide ‘ of Yorkshire is a part of British history under Norman rule that rarely gets a mention .

    “The rebels of 1916 only succeeded in destroying that.”

    The rebels of 1916 destroyed what was left of a putative democracy at least over most of Ireland .Women in Ireland BTW got the vote (1918 ) before their counterparts in Britain .

    Without the rebels of 1916 -modern Ireland would not be the confident nation it has become – Instead of dealing directly with the outside world it would instead be like Northern Ireland or Wales or Scotland have to deal second hand via Westminster/City of London interlocutors .

    For all it’s faults and there are some -it’s a far better place than the political asylum 100 miles up the North Road from Dublin ..

    BTW if there never was an Irish nation this could be because under British rule it was never recognised or represented until enough of the Irish people could speak English for the Westminster tyrants to sit up and take notice .and that only began post 1848 when one million Irish died from famine while the food to feed them was being exported to England under armed guard .

  • Gopher

    I could have said the South and escaped the pedantry. I apologize Irish history struggles to be interesting until the conclusion of the civil war and is a desert afterwards. No one disputes there was bigotry in Ireland, the ones returning home after saving the “Free State” suffered it too because the religion of Easter 16 had to kept alive.

    Magennis VC was an Irishman and according to my father who idolized his achievement was poorly treated for being a Catholic and believing my father I share his contempt for those out of bigotry treated him badly. Nobody had to embarrass my Father to explain that to me and no one had to embarrass me to be repulsed by his treatment.

  • Greenflag

    Comrade Stalin ,

    I believe it’s almost always a mistake to look back at historical events almost a century ago and view the people or such events through a modern perspective . Pearse was a man of his time . Ireland was ‘late ‘ in developing the kind of nationalism that from the 1840′s had spread throughout Europe . A century later the same kind of national movements arose in Africa and Asia as the Imperial powers retreated .

    As to comparisons with Collins . Pearse did surrender to avoid further casualties when he knew it was the end

    As to

    ” had they (HMG )forced all-Ireland Home Rule through the Irish civil war would have been a picnic in comparison to what would have happened – not least given all the defecting soldiers in the military garrisons around the country who would have thrown their lot in with the UVF and placed themselves outside of London’s control.’

    I agree . Of course the hundred thousand plus ex British Army soldiers from the rest of Ireland would have sat idly by ?

    Perhaps as I stated in another post above that we can thank the men of 1916 for excising that particular demon which would probably have ended with a much smaller (4 county size or less ) Northern Ireland probably 99% Unionist with massive population movements with people fleeing for safety across a changing border .

    Would Britain have intervened or would they have let the locals fight out until HMG intervention brought about a partition while the dead were buried in their tens of thousands .

    Yes on reflection 1916 was probably worth the sacrifice in retro when one considers how things might have ended up.

    More than anything else though and despite the truth of some of your comments above re ‘material differences ‘ history’ is not made by those who write but by those who act . That applies to Ireland North and South just as much as anywhere else .

    Ireland is a nation and so is England, Scotland and Wales . Northern Ireland is NOT a nation but an amalgam of two or perhaps three or more . Irish , British , and perhaps Northern Protestant Unionist at least for a section within political unionism . And then there are the offshoots British/Irish etc . The NPU nation may be more problematic than the other two.

  • http://www.oldfaith.wordpress.com truthfinder

    Greenflag

    Your answer only demonstrates the validity of my position. There was no Irish nation or a distinct Irish people – there never has been in our shared history and never will be. It is an artificial construct in the minds of plastic paddies in NY bars and the history teachers of the “Christian Brothers” (oxymoron if ever heard one as Christianity is based on truth). The British identity and nation is one that has evolved, I grant you, but at least has centuries of shared history, political/legal systems, and values to at least give some legitimacy to their nation state claims. The only essential difference between the pub in Dublin and the one in Glasgow or Newcastle is the odd looking tricolour and a pride that those in the smaller island like to have a bit more craic! However, the Dublin-born migrant soon assimilates into the Scottish or Geordie city and within one generation produces children that look and sound “as British as Finchley.”

    You have twisted the biological evidence which modern anthroplogy has published. The peoples who inhabit this island are genetically indistinguishable from those who inhabit the big one across the water. We are not a distinct race but a homogenous one with a common language, shared values and culture. Pretending we are as different as France and Germany on Easter marches does not mean we are! Indeed, the surnames of prominent republicans demonstrate that they are equally descended from Scottish and English settlers – see Gerry Adams, Martina Anderson, and Michael Ferguson of SF for prominent examples.

    Of course the great irony in all of this is that the working class politicians like Ian Paisley and Martin McGuinness find they have more in common and likewise the middle class Trimble with the leadership of the Tories and FF in the South than they do with their fellow-co-religionists. It is a pity it took the deaths of 3,000 people and years of bitter hatred to work that out! We have differences but we are not indistinct.

    David McCann may get all misty eyed about walking the streets of Dublin but such self-induced feelings are a poor guide to the facts of life. More’s the pity we all did not let our heads rule our emotions for the last 5 centuries on these shores.

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Oh Truthfinder, “The British identity and nation is one that has evolved, I grant you, but at least has centuries of shared history, political/legal systems, and values to at least give some legitimacy to their nation state claims.”

    Over and above reading Greenflag’s thoughts again carefully, perhaps, I’d recommend reading a copy of “the Making of Ireland and its Undoing” by Alice Stopfird Green, widow of the great English Historian John Richard Green, in order to get a balanced picture as to exactly why the evolving late medieval culture of Ireland and its first flowerings into the European Renaissance was brutally aborted. I’d also recommend:

    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Age-Atrocity-Violence-Political-Conflict/dp/184682267X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1398149408&sr=8-1&keywords=the+age+of+atrocity

    Age of Atrocity is a first attempt at sketching out an objective approach, outside of the agendas of nationalist and revisionist historians, that can seriously enquire into the ugly issues and consequences of violence during the early modern conquest and confiscation of Ireland.

    If you were familiar with non-English sources, especially Irish language sources, you might be more reluctant to claim that there is no Irish nation. In committing time to learning the Irish language, you can have access to one of the great literatures of Europe, something comparable to Greco-Roman culture, and something that was ancient when England did not even exist.

    The continuity of Irish culture through great social hardship, especially the economic incentives to encourage cultural amnesia, is the thread of continuous identity that permitted the cohesive re-imagining of a modern Irish nation flexible enough to envisage itself as a whole while expressing itself through the enrichment of a multiplicity of absorbed traditions.

    The shallow common ground that “working class politicians like Ian Paisley and Martin McGuinness find they have more in common” seems to be the shared homogeneity of modern popular global culture and perhaps even a few new bespoke suits.

  • Greenflag

    Gopher,

    ” I apologize Irish history struggles to be interesting until the conclusion of the civil war and is a desert afterwards.”

    As you’re not Irish theres no need to apologize and even if you were Irish theres lots of Irish people not that interested in history either .Ditto for Brits , Americans , Germans , etc etc.

    “No one disputes there was bigotry in Ireland,’

    And there still is as we see expressed here sometimes on slugger and of course what we see via youtube/facebook /tv etc from the streets of Belfast and elsewhere in Northern Ireland . But they say it’s improved i.e reduced over what it used to be ?

    “Magennis VC was an Irishman and according to my father who idolized his achievement was poorly treated for being a Catholic and believing my father I share his contempt for those out of bigotry treated him badly.”

    Well done your father and yourself . The ‘embarassment ‘ above referred to the Belfast Unionist Council politicians not to anybody else .

  • Greenflag

    truthfinder ,

    Your answer above suggests to me that you may be further out than the twilight zone re your knowledge of Ireland or Irish history or the Irish nation and ditto for your knowledge of Britain and British history .

    If Ireland is not a nation then neither is Scotland nor Wales nor England . I would recommend you visit any hostelry in Glasgow , or Cardiff or Newcastle and tell the locals Scotland/Wales /England are not nations .

    Make sure to have your personal end of days religious consultant on hand to advise you of a perhaps imminent return to the ‘twilight zone’ from whence you came .

    Whatever you do in the above named cities just don’t try that line in Tyrone or in Dublin . Even lichens cling to life and I would hope your will to continue your earthly existence is stronger than that of a lichen ;)

    Evolution never stops as Charles Darwin proved . This applies as much to nations as to people , plants , and animals . This is not the place to go into the historical detail re the various stages in Irish history where the ‘evolution’ of Irish nationhood or statehood was halted by outside powers – from the Vikings to the Norman French to the Tudors etc . Despite all of that the ‘nation ‘ survived albeit in english speaking mode instead of Irish Gaelic and despite several centuries of London rule .

    “Pretending we are as different as France and Germany on Easter marches does not mean we are!”

    Your comment here indicates you haven’t grasped the very basics re nation, country, state , language , history . France and Germany are like Ireland and England different ‘nations ‘ They may differ in language but if you subject the French and Germans under the same anthropological microscope you’ll find they are largely with a few regional minority differences the same people i.e East Franks (Germans ) West Franks (French ) and both very similar to the people/peoples of these islands .

    “We are not a distinct race but a homogenous one with a common language, shared values and culture.”

    I never said we were and the shared values and culture are shared not just with the UK but with the USA and Australia and other anglophone countries around the world . But the USA , Australia , New Zealand, Canada , South Africa are self governing States and so now is Ireland (Republic ) and Scotland may be after next September. The USA , South Africa and Ireland all had to fight for their independence the other countries had an easier route to independent statehood . BTW it’s called political evolution.

    “the surnames of prominent republicans demonstrate that they are equally descended from Scottish and English settlers – see Gerry Adams, Martina Anderson, and Michael Ferguson of SF for prominent examples.”

    Without wishing to sound rude that is meaningless gibberish in the context of the present day . I went to school in Dublin with a Shakespeare and a Churchill and one of the narrowest minded Orangemen I ever met was a man sporting the name O’Connor . Irish Republican Erskine Childers was Anglo Irish . De Valera’s father was Cuban Spanish -Easter Rising leader Patrick Pearse’s father was English- Parnell’s mother was American as was Winston Churchill’s.
    You may have imbibed an exaggerated importance to names if you grew up in a place where names were an important clue to political or religious identity .

    Modern Ireland has people with names as unirish/unenglish as Novikova , Chang , Kovak , Patel , and many others and their children don’t sound as if they come from Finchley , or Warsaw or Prague or Mumbai or Hong Kong .

    ‘David McCann may get all misty eyed about walking the streets of Dublin but such self-induced feelings are a poor guide to the facts of life.’

    I thought David McCann’s piece and Fitzjameshorse piece were both very good examples of what could be termed a common Irish ‘growing up ‘ experience at least for those of a nationalist /republican background. I was going to give my own but I felt they both had said it all .


    ‘More’s the pity we all did not let our heads rule our emotions for the last 5 centuries on these shores.’

    Well yes but whoever believes politics , history, and wars of conquest , everywhere are entirely rational undertakings , misunderstands the human condition . In any event for much of Irish History – leading heads were often unable to rule emotions as they had been forcibly removed from bodies and lodged on spikes on the gates around the walled cities of Ireland as a warning to those would dare resist the conqueror . The heads of O’Tooles, Kavanaghs, and O’Byrnes were permanent fixtures on spikes above the gates of Dublin during the middle ages /Norman conquest period. There is one head still ghoulishly preserved in a Drogheda Church -that of Saint Oliver Plunkett who was of what was called Old English stock but whose Catholicism was enough of an irritant for Oliver Cromwell to have it removed . Ironically Cromwell’s own head (karma again ?) was treated with much disrespect when he was de-interred after the Restoration and the English celebrants kicked it about as a football . They did’nt like Puritans then and still don’t . Good for them.

    The past is what it is /was be it Easter Rising or Battle of the Boyne . It can define who we are but we don’t have to be imprisoned by it . The future will be built not by forgetting the past but by transcending it so that both Easter Rising and Boyne Battle can be seen as ‘building blocks ‘ to a future more evolved Ireland .

    And I’d never say never in Ireland . The Irish nation has a long history of bouncing back whenever those who said it ‘never ‘ would were long dead and forgotten .
    And it will and is doing so again .

  • http://www.oldfaith.wordpress.com truthfinder

    Greenflag

    I am afraid merely insulting my religious beliefs and the facts of history I objectively established only further demeans your position. You are like the rhetorician in the story who wrote in his notes, “argument weak here – shout loudly.”

    We all can see the grounds for accepting the existence of a British, English and Scottish national identity. There are linguistic, cultural, political/legal, geographical borders like Hadrians wall, shared values, religious frameworks like the Scottish Presbyterian national church that underpin those claims. Indeed, Britain, England and Scotland can point to significant portions of their respective histories when they have existed as nations and ruled by monarchial dynasties.

    That is not the case in the island of Ireland. The definitions in the 1916 Easter Declaration of “the Irish people” and “the Irish nation” are not based on any historical precedent. They are the figment of the signatories imagination. That may be an uncomfortable fact for you to face up to in your twilight zone but it is a fact! Even the reality that for almost a century 6 of the 26 counties of the island refuse to be associated with the remainder evidences that lack of cohesive unity.

    You say, “The Irish nation has a long history of bouncing back whenever those who said it ‘never ‘ would were long dead and forgotten.” There is no Irish nation and there never has been historically. You are either being intellectually dishonest or are plainly ignorant of history.

    Nationalists are free to try and persuade unionists that a new nation could emerge from our fragmented backgrounds. I think some may even be persuaded. However, republicans need to get off the moral high horse that somehow they have the morally superior claim over the future of this island. An independent NI has equal moral and historical grounds or a fully integrated NI in the UK. In fact, Newcastle or Liverpool has an equal moral legitimacy in claiming there exists a “Geordie nation” or a “Scouse nation” as much as you do for the putative Irish nation.

  • Gopher

    @Greenflag Why am I not Irish?

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Oh dear Truthfinder, “Monarchical dynasties”, as a touchstone of nationhood, eh?

    Try Breandan Ó Buachalla’s “The Crown of Ireland”, a wee bit dry, but all you need to get a proper picture of the existence of a long standing Monarchical state in Ireland. And as just one example, the Ó Neill dynasty were ruling a loosely confederated Ireland as High Kings before England even existed, and, incidentally, when Newcastle was also a separate Kingdom ( Anglo-Saxon Northumbria, founded from the two earlier kingdoms of Bernicia and Deira).

    The last king to rule Ireland in his own person, directly, was James II of England AND, separately, Ireland (and also, separately, VII of Scotland) who held court in Dublin Castle from March 1688/9 to July 1690. After that the “monarchy” in all three kingdoms actually became the puppet of an “in all but name” Republic who appointed the leader of what had been the national enemy for the last half of the seventeenth century as a controllable rubber stamp for legislation, before turning to a minor German noble, the Elector of Hanover, to continue to rubber stamp their oligarchical rule. Possibly you might try Paul Monad’s “Jacobitism and the English People” or Ó Buachalla’s excellent (in Irish) “Aisling Ghéar” or “Ireland and the Jacobite Cause” by Eamonn Ó Ciardha for the Irish end of the transaction. So much for “Indeed, Britain, England and Scotland can point to significant portions of their respective histories when they have existed as nations and ruled by monarchial dynasties” being in any way different to Ireland’s own case.

    And simply because an immigrant grouping stubbornly refuse, after four hundred years, to consider themselves as actually present within the life of a nation, it does not in any way invalidate the existence of that nation. The Irish nation, like Poland, has retained a rich culture across centuries of conquest and effacement. Now try telling the Poles that Poland does not exist!!!!!!!

  • http://www.selfhatinggentile.blogger.com tmitch57

    “And simply because an immigrant grouping stubbornly refuse, after four hundred years, to consider themselves as actually present within the life of a nation, it does not in any way invalidate the existence of that nation.”

    “To grant legitimacy to the Rising is to grant legitimacy to the Ulster Volunteers, another organization which was established not only to overthrow Parliament but also to undermine the democratic will of the Irish people.”

    @Seann,
    At least unlike so many other Irish republicans you appear to be agnostic as to whether or not the unionists belong to that nation.

    @CS,

    The Ulster Volunteers were not so much attempting to deny the democratic will of the Irish people as opting out of that people by force. If it required denying the democratic will of the Irish people to do so i.e. no Home Rule, they were happy to comply, but they mainly wanted Protestant Ulster to be left out. Although, I do agree with your other remarks about the Easter Rising.

  • http://www.selfhatinggentile.blogger.com tmitch57

    “That is not the case in the island of Ireland. The definitions in the 1916 Easter Declaration of “the Irish people” and “the Irish nation” are not based on any historical precedent. They are the figment of the signatories imagination. That may be an uncomfortable fact for you to face up to in your twilight zone but it is a fact! Even the reality that for almost a century 6 of the 26 counties of the island refuse to be associated with the remainder evidences that lack of cohesive unity.”

    @truthfinder,

    That reality does not point to the non-existence of an Irish nation but merely that Ulster Protestants don’t consider themselves to be part of that nation.

    Britain is today still absorbing tens or hundreds of thousands of immigrants from the former British Empire: from Africa, South Asia, and elsewhere who have very little historically in common with the English, Scots, and Welsh who make up the core of the British nation. The core of the Irish nation is made up of the Catholic Gaels whose ancestors spoke Irish. That the British Protestants don’t consider themselves to be part of that nation hardly is grounds for doubting its existence. The former Anglo-Irish Protestants in the South appear to be assimilating more rapidly than the imperial leftovers in Britain.

  • Greenflag

    truthfinder ,

    ‘ insulting my religious beliefs ‘

    My apologies I did’nt realise you were a Puritan -I thought they were all gone . Don’t take it too personal I’ve been accused of being overly skeptical of all religions and denominations to which charge I plead as Richard Dawkins has ‘Guilty ‘ on all counts .

    But that’s your own business i.e your religion I mean .

    I note that in your haste to establish the credentials of a British , Scottish and English nationalities you omitted to mention the Welsh . Any reason or just the usual remnant of post imperial hangover or forgetfulness ?

    ‘There is no Irish nation and there never has been historically.

    Theres no Poland , no Serbia , no Croatia , no Czech Republic , no Slovakia , no Macedonia , no Portugal , No Norway , no Iceland , no Peru , no Bolivia , no Chile .

    There must be a hundred countries out there which don’t exist using your ‘methodology ‘ for establishing whether a nation exists either now or in the past . I suggest you travel to any of the aforementioned countries and enquire of the local authorities as to whether they exist or not . I’m sure all of the above mentioned have padded cells in which you will be comforted until your illusions on non existent nations passes or is cured .

    ‘Nationalists are free to try and persuade unionists that a new nation could emerge from our fragmented backgrounds.’

    True but I’d rather watch grass grow . I’m not that fussed to be honest one way or the other . And regardless the Irish nation will continue to exist .

    “republicans need to get off the moral high horse that somehow they have the morally superior claim over the future of this island.’

    The only claim over the future of this island will be that granted to whichever political party or coalition of parties wins any election in any putative island wide general election . And that claim will be theirs for as long as they hold power . If they are removed from office by democratic vote then some other party/coalition will take over what you call a ‘claim ‘ to the future .

    “An independent NI has equal moral and historical grounds ”

    It might have if it existed but it doesn’t . And in it’s present 6 county format it never will . But I’ll concede as I favoured that solution myself once upon a time that a repartitioned Northern Ireland which would leave ‘unionism ‘ with a small enclave territory around East Belfast , North Down and South Antrim with it’s capital in Carrickfergus could claim historical grounds for exclusion from a UI and I personnally would not oppose such a claim .

    But given the changed demographics and evolving demographics even in former unionist heartland areas it seems that such an ‘independent ‘ NI is unlikely ever to come into existence . Unless of course it’s residents emulated the actions of the Easter Rising revolutionaries which also seems beyond imagination .

    ‘a fully integrated NI in the UK.’

    The problem there is the UK (none of the major parties ) sees Northern Ireland as an offshore Finchley . They cut the knot in 1920 and gave Unionists enough rope to hang themselves by their own petards which is why we are where we are today -i.e in a state of limbo with both sides waiting for Godot -the difference being one side has more reason to believe that Godot’s arrival is on the horizon whereas the other would Godot as disappearing further and further over said horizon.

    The last region within Britain to revolt against London rule was Scotland . The Geordies and Scousers have never risen against the Southern English power .

    The North including York did resist William the Conqueror but was laid waste and Wat Tyler’s Peasant Revolt in London failed to unshackle the Norman chain .

    Ireland’s history has been much more persistent in it’s numerous uprisings and revolts against Norman , Tudor and later British monarchical regimes . The Battle of Culloden 1745 was the last pitched battle held on British soil . Ireland in 1798 and then we’ve had a century ‘ 1800 to 1922 of political and social unrest , famine , uprisings , mass emigration and eventual reform of the worst excesses of British rule in Ireland during which the modern Irish nation was formed . It matured imo in the 1960′s and regardless of faults it’s a far better and more prosperous country than it ever was under British rule .

    BTW Seaan above mentioned the existence of the Polish nation despite it’s several ‘disappearances ‘under Russian or German rule . And then theres the Jewish people who mysteriously came to nationhood following 2,000 years of official non existence .

    Arrogant sons of bitches eh even worse than the Irish Imagine that – asserting your nationhood even when it had’nt existed for two millenia ?

  • Greenflag

    PS I’d add that it might be more than your life is worth to tell the Israelis that there’s no Jewish nation . They might mistake you for a non existent Palestinian who apparently also have illusions of ‘nationhood ‘ as per your imagined rationale .

  • Greenflag

    tmitch57

    ‘At least unlike so many other Irish republicans you appear to be agnostic as to whether or not the unionists belong to that nation.’

    What do you mean by so many ? Seaan will no doubt reply in his own vein but it’s been my experience even among nationalists just as much as republicans that ‘agnosticism ‘ in that regard has become the default position of the majority of Irish people .

    Thats not from any hostility . What it means is it’s ‘ Unionist’s business themselves whether or not they belong to an Irish nation or not . Thats whats been agreed in the GFA . Nobody can make a man /woman Irish or British without their consent and in any event a British minority in a UI political context is just as viable as an Irish minority in a British context (Northern Ireland ) would have been had political unionism been a bit more open minded -less intolerant of Irish culture and language and less paranoid of political change .

    As of now it appears they missed the boat on that opportunity half a century ago .

  • Greenflag

    Gopher .

    ‘ Why am I not Irish?’

    I assumed you were’nt but I did state theres no need to apologize and even if you were Irish theres lots of Irish people not that interested in history either .Ditto for Brits , Americans , Germans etc

    Perhaps I should have included NI Unionists alongside the dittoed three nationalities mentioned above as a separate nationality or do you object to being included in the Brit category ?

    BTW – You are what you are not what I or anybody else assumes you are or says you are .

    I

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Oh dear, tmitch57, you do not have to be a Republican to be Irish, only someone who needs some company! As possibly the only committed Jacobite legitimist in Ireland (check my profile if you don’t believe me) I find it a novel and quite interesting experience to be called a “Republican” and considering that I’ve been criticising those reptillian English Republican hypocrites of 1688 who claimed continuity as they substituted a “Republican” puppet from Holland for their rightful anointed king…..

    “And simply because an immigrant grouping stubbornly refuse, after four hundred years, to consider themselves as actually present within the life of a nation, it does not in any way invalidate the existence of that nation.” Or their birth and subsequent claim to nationality in the landscape that that nation derives from.

    So of course I’ve no problem with being “agnostic as to whether or not the unionists belong to that nation.” Not agnostic, quite certain that the immigrants are now fully Irish as they were born in the place and live in the place and that’s the usual qualifier, but I do think that identity is in the last analysis entirely elective so they can call themselves Irish Unionists if they want to, no problem for me, they still have as much claim to one of the great cultural identities of Europe (see above) as I have.

    Well if I did object I’d then have to find a pure Gael blood donor willing to give me enough blood to slush out my own Norman, Scots and Sassenach and French, Cherokee, Spanish and Jewish bloodlines for starters. So I may not be able to make as decent a hand of racism as someone more pure-blooded.

    But in truth truthfinder’s bizarre assertions simply goaded me to calling my fellow Irishmen immigrants. I am ashamed, mea Culpa, mea magna culpa…..

  • Barnshee

    “Siege of Derry and how it continues to inspire me325 years later.” and similar

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Hello, tmitch57, I really should record that I enjoyed your 6.11 posting (above) and by the way, “The former Anglo-Irish Protestants in the South appear to be assimilating more rapidly than the imperial leftovers in Britain.”

    Hey, that’s me, but the north of the boundary unicorn version with a big splash of O’Neill!

  • zep

    David – at what point was the connection drawn between the ‘news reports of bombs’ you were shielded from, and the beliefs of the men and women of 1916? The people out on the streets today plating mortars and shooting people would no doubt describe themselves as ‘die-hard Republicans’, in thrall to the mythology of the Easter ‘Rising’ (a bit of a let-down I imagine when the huddled masses didn’t join in?)

    This is something which Irish nationalism needs to address – the sneaking regard for physical force which permeates their tradition. What happened in 1916 was of its time, as were the Ulster Volunteers and all the rest of it, and we should remember that when we look back. There is no glory in war, just or unjust, only blood and tears. I appreciate you were sharing a personal anecdote but the tone is unsettling.

  • zep

    BTW this finds its equivalence in ‘Ulster will fight, and Ulster will be right’ etc etc – we say we have civilised ourselves but we still venerate the uncivilised acts.

  • Barnshee

    “The former Anglo-Irish Protestants in the South appear to be assimilating more rapidly than the imperial leftovers in Britain.”

    Since the protestant population has been effectively removed – now forming some 2% of the population – its hardly a form of “assimilating”

    “BTW this finds its equivalence in ‘Ulster will fight, and Ulster will be right’ etc etc – we say we have civilised ourselves but we still venerate the uncivilised acts.”

    Whats sauce for the goose?

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Hi Barnshee, the “Anglo-Irish Protestants in the South” are a growing band!!! On one of my forays to an Anglican Church in Dublin during a research trip, I was pleased to see that “High Church” is becoming more and more common, and that the church itself has a growing congregation of young converts from the “State” religion.

    Also, West Cork seems to be a haven for the returning diaspora who can use their city earned millions to buy back in (and be resident for a few months of the year at least). And the older strata of “Anglo-Irish Protestants in the South” I know all seem to be very confidently Irish.

  • Barnshee

    ” I was pleased to see that “High Church” is becoming more and more common, and that the church itself has a growing congregation of young converts from the “State” religion. ”

    Funny that –with the continued (state sponsored) decline in Prod numbers

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protestantism_in_Ireland

    ” And the older strata of “Anglo-Irish Protestants in the South” I know all seem to be very confidently Irish.”

    Unlike the northern prod they do not have the ability to say “fuck off” with impiunity

  • Am Ghobsmacht

    Barnshee

    Erm, that link you posted to support the state sponsored decline in Prod numbers down south, it states at the bottom that numbers have increased in every southern county:

    “The 2006 census of the Republic of Ireland found that a little over 5% of the nation was Protestant. The 2011 census of the Republic of Ireland found that the Protestant population in every county had grown”

    Sure, percentage wise it’s down on a century ago, but Seaan’s point was that numbers are now increasing.

    Your link supports this view.

  • SeaanUiNeill

    Actually Barnesee, I should have said enthusiastically and “confidently Irish.”

    Its great to be part of a living culture the rest of the world respects, and all that……”protestant” or not………