Was Irish Navy right to join in Trafalgar 200 celebrations?

An exceedingly small wave has been caused by the participation of the Irish Navy’s LE Eithne and the training ship Asgard in the recent Trafalgar 200 celebrations with one disgruntled Dubliner believing it is a diminishment of Irish sovereignty.

Meanwhile, James Kelly in the Irish News takes an extremely unusual tack, if you pardon the pun, by giving out that they didn’t turn up at all (courtesy of Nuzhound). Seems he just wanted to have a go at the Spike and the fact that Ireland doesn’t want or have a military sea presence.

  • ginfizz

    “Sir Reg Empey, no longer strangled by the Orange Sash”

    Pity for James that Reg was traipsing around East Belfast on Friday wearing one. He didn’t look to strngled to me. Isn’t it about time Mr. Kelly was retired?

  • peteb

    Was Irish Navy right to join in Trafalgar 200 celebrations?

    Well, George.. if the French didn’t have a problem joining the International Fleet Review for the Trafalgar 200 celebrations…

  • Jacko

    Quite, peteb.

    When the hell are people going to get over it all?

  • Baluba

    It is non-sensical for the Irish to take part in this affair since they weren’t there at the time, never mind the weight of difficult Irish-British history before and after.

  • George

    Peteb,
    As I said, it caused an exceedingly small wave down here, one person actually. Just wondering if anybody cares.

    For example, some might think a neutral country shouldn’t get involved in this type of stuff. and today’s France is a NATO ally of Britain so their presence is to be expected.

    Does anyone know if the Swiss Navy was represented. I heard once that even though it’s a land-locked country it has a bigger navy than Ireland.

  • lamh_dearg

    Yawn!

  • peteb

    “some might think”, George?

    If that’s what you think, then you should say so.

  • peteb

    Ships attending the International Fleet Review

  • Jimmy_Sands

    Didn’t we have some sort of connection with the UK in 1805?

  • G2

    “Sir Reg Empey, no longer strangled by the Orange Sash”

    “Pity for James that Reg was traipsing around East Belfast on Friday wearing one. He didn’t look to strngled to me. Isn’t it about time Mr. Kelly was retired?”

    Ginfizz :

    James Kelly’s quip “Strangled by the orange Sash” was refering to the formal *Constitutional* linkage between the UUP & Orange Order recently broken by the GOLI in March 2005. As new leader of the UUP Reg Empey will not be *strangled* by this link anymore. It has nothing to do with Empey being a member of the Orange or wearing his sash at any parade his lodge parades in.

  • G2

    “Sir Reg Empey, no longer strangled by the Orange Sash”

    “Pity for James that Reg was traipsing around East Belfast on Friday wearing one. He didn’t look to strngled to me. Isn’t it about time Mr. Kelly was retired?”

    Ginfizz :

    James Kelly’s quip “Strangled by the orange Sash” was refering to the formal *Constitutional* linkage between the UUP & Orange Order recently broken by the GOLI in March 2005. As new leader of the UUP Reg Empey will not be *strangled* by this link anymore. It has nothing to do with Empey being a member of the Orange or wearing his sash at any parade his lodge parades in.

  • G2

    “Sir Reg Empey, no longer strangled by the Orange Sash”

    “Pity for James that Reg was traipsing around East Belfast on Friday wearing one. He didn’t look to strngled to me. Isn’t it about time Mr. Kelly was retired?”

    Ginfizz :

    James Kelly’s quip “Strangled by the orange Sash” was refering to the formal *Constitutional* linkage between the UUP & Orange Order recently broken by the GOLI in March 2005. As new leader of the UUP Reg Empey will not be *strangled* by this link anymore. It has nothing to do with Empey being a member of the Orange or wearing his sash at any parade his lodge parades in.

  • beano; EverythingUlster.com

    Wouldn’t Ireland be living FURTHER in Britain’s shadow if it was one of the European nations who felt that they COULDN’T attend because of their past relationship with Britain?

    Perhaps this bloke is just pissed off at anyone from Ireland saying “Look, we’re over it”

  • G2

    “It is non-sensical for the Irish to take part in this affair since they weren’t there at the time, never mind the weight of difficult Irish-British history before and after”.

    They were there, 4000 of them.

  • George

    Peteb,
    It’s not what I think.

    My view is that if this type of thing continues to help the ongoing reconciliation between the Irish and British peoples then send all five ships, or whatever number we have now.

    The Northern Ireland “situation” has held back the development of mature relations between the Irish and British peoples for far too long.

    Or as Winston Churchill once said: “Half a province cannot obstruct forever the reconciliation between the British and Irish peoples.”

    It makes sense (economic and political) for the Irish people to spend time building bridges with the British people who want to build bridges.

    Let the leader of the Unionist people Ian Paisley continue to refuse to touch a southern hand, we’ll deal with the British people directly.

    I just hope LE Eithne’s presence didn’t give the Spanish and Japanese an opportunity to swipe more of our fish.

  • oul dub

    Spot on G2.
    Throughout the Napoleonic wars, Irishmen never made up less than 30% of the British Army, no doubt the figure for the navy was somthing similar.

  • George

    G2,
    true a quarter of Nelson’s men were Irish but you fail to mention that many of that 4,000 were pressed into service under pain of death for their part in the United Irish Rebellion.

  • b13

    can we change this ttopic title to

    ‘is this the most boring thread ever on slugger’

    haha

  • Jimmy_Sands

    If only, b13, if only…

  • Donnie

    b13,

    Is the 13 your age or your IQ? Try using caps once in a while.

  • BCN

    There´s a great quote by the Duke of Wellington on his fellow Irish soldiers in the British Army at the time: “I don´t know what they do to the enemy but they scare the hell out of me.”
    Thought thats kind of funny.

  • slug9987

    I am surprised the ROI blogger thinks this is this interesting.

  • cladycowboy

    I was in New York during Independence day in 2000. There was a Sail2000 festival that drew Navy’s from across the globe. The brilliant bars of NY were filled with sailors which wasn’t particularly welcomed by this horny 22yr old then, as it somewhat hampered my pulling style. There were men who looked like miraculous Chernobyl survivors who were surrounded by the ladies of NY, i imagine because these survivors were in a Navy uniform. In one establishment, namely Scruffy Murphys, just off Broadway, the place was full of US and Irish sailors. It was great craic. Every now and again, a group of British sailors came in. This led the Captain of the Irish fleet, without fail, to put ‘Sunday, Bloody Sunday’ on the jukebox!
    It seems times have changed.
    P.S We turned down a ‘lift’ from the Irish navy to Boston. We caught a plane instead. Missed out big time there i think. Still the Captain was drunk when he offered, he’d had less success with the ladies than the Yanks, and well…i’m sure he hadn’t seen his wife in a long time…

  • martin

    BCN,

    There is also another not so great quote from Wellington regarding his Irish birth.

    “just because one is born in a stable
    does not make one a horse.”

    He referred to his own troops as the scum of the earth and he and Nelson the victor of Trafalgar never got on.

    I think its very important that every nation recognises its history and for the British people Trafalgar was a great victory—-however the Irish government would be a lot better employed commemorating and honouring its own country’s past rather than bending over backwards to display some sort of inverse guilt/hate complex towards Britain—we are good friends its all in the past–it is,it is, it really is.( they try and convince everyone)—Why not honour the people that struggled to achieve Irish independence-the way every other former colony who achieved independence does. The Irish attitude is the equivalent of Americans attending Boer war ceremonys and wanting to completely forget and ignore the 4th of July American independence celebrations—-Ireland stop cow-towing to your former English masters its sickening.

  • mnob

    George,

    Nobody asked why the irish were there – just that they were. I personally find it odd that at just about every major campaign the british military has been active in the irish have been at the forefront and yet according to some history texts didnt really want to be there.

  • Robert Keogh

    George,

    today’s France is a NATO ally of Britain

    No they’re not.

    Jimmy Sands,

    Didn’t we have some sort of connection with the UK in 1805?

    Yeah but that piece of legislation was passed a bribed, non-democratic, non-representative body so it never had any legal force. No one in Ireland ever paid much heed to it, except to shove it down the throats of those who forced it upon us.

    oul dub,

    Irishmen never made up less than 30% of the British Army

    Irishmen do not make up any part of the british army, take the shilling, the oath, the uniform and you are british.

  • Robert Keogh

    George,

    today’s France is a NATO ally of Britain

    No they’re not.

    Jimmy Sands,

    Didn’t we have some sort of connection with the UK in 1805

    Yeah but that piece of legislation was passed a bribed, non-democratic, non-representative body so it never had any legal force. No one in Ireland ever paid much heed to it, except to shove it down the throats of those who forced it upon us.

    oul dub,

    Irishmen never made up less than 30% of the British Army

    Irishmen do not make up any part of the british army, take the shilling, the oath, the uniform and you are british.

  • martin

    mnob,

    they were there mainly because of lack of any other means of employment and livelyhood–large families on small plots of land which couldnt be sub-divided any more.In urban centers large families living in 0ne room dwellings –they had to go somewhere.
    yOU will also find Irish born soldiers in foreign service at the forefront of the military campaigns of almost every major power over the last 400 years–Scots troops likewise and for similar reasons

  • Jimmy_Sands

    Robert,

    “Irishmen do not make up any part of the british army, take the shilling, the oath, the uniform and you are british.”

    This test makes me British by descent along with a sizeable proportion of the Irish population. And yet it’s the same people who trot out this sectarian nonsense who will in the same breath claim to view northern unionists as part of the Irish nation.

  • aquifer

    The Irish navy would do well to keep in with the British Navy and vice versa. They both have a lot of coastline to look after.

  • SeamusG

    Robert Keogh,
    So Tom Barry was British?

  • Jimmy_Sands

    Seamus,

    Presumably Sean MacStiofan was a non-citizen too.

  • T.Ruth

    Nelson’s Pillar,Dublin 1966
    I had been up to the top the week before the bomb demolished this link with Ireland’s military past. I was escorting a group of Protestant schoolboy footballers from East Belfast. Things were different then-the IRA campaign of the late fifties and early sixties had gone political and community relations were excellent.The bomb reminded us that there were those whose hatred of all things British extended to directing sectarian violence at their fellow countrymen.It was the beginning of the movement to attempt to separate the Protestant people of Northern Ireland from the Irish aspect of their identity.Thankfully it failed and continues to fail.
    I was minded to pen a poem at the time. Excuse me if my sharing it with you is a negative experience.

    Nelson’s Pillar 1966

    They have only destroyed a stone
    That bore your looks,
    They did not erase Trafalgar from the history books.
    The history you stood for was their own,
    You symbolised an Empire in retreat,
    But you had stood long enough alone,
    And probably didn’t like O’Connell Street.

    T.Ruth

  • Jacko

    How long are a tiny minority of Irish people going to define themselves solely by their hatred of all things British and presume to determine for others what their nationality is?
    It’s pathetic.
    Grow up and get over it, for Christ’s sake!

  • Martin Dub

    The fact that the Asgard II was there is quite ironic, seeing that the original Asgard was the boat that brought the guns for the Easter Rising into the country.

  • Jacko

    Owned and sailed by a very British civil servant, Erskine Childers, if I’m not mistaken.

  • martin

    Jacko,

    Erskine childers payed with his life for his love of Ireland dont be so disrespectful.

  • GavBelfast

    Robert, by any measurement what you penned above amounts to an intemperate and nasty little rant. What came over you?

    I hope I’m not being naive when I say I’m hopeful that your views are unrepresentative of mature attitudes in the state.

  • kevser

    The Trafalgar warfest is a very good example of the british recationary mindset.
    As long as we continue to glorify imperialist adventures, rape, slaughter and exploitation , we are doomed to continue waging wars where working class people will kill each other for no gain whatsoever.
    It goes on and on. Look at the brits in Iraq?
    What the *** are they doing in Iraq? Can somebody please tell me why british troops are in Iraq in 2005?
    The fact of commemorating an imperial battle when british working class kids are on the front line of a new imperialist adventure is disgraceful and i think alot of news sources showed their real colours by their coverage of this farce.

  • kevser

    The Trafalgar warfest is a very good example of the british recationary mindset.
    As long as we continue to glorify imperialist adventures, rape, slaughter and exploitation , we are doomed to continue waging wars where working class people will kill each other for no gain whatsoever.
    It goes on and on. Look at the brits in Iraq?
    What the *** are they doing in Iraq? Can somebody please tell me why british troops are in Iraq in 2005?
    The fact of commemorating an imperial battle when british working class kids are on the front line of a new imperialist adventure is disgraceful and i think alot of news sources showed their real colours by their coverage of this farce.

  • kevser

    The Trafalgar warfest is a very good example of the british recationary mindset.
    As long as we continue to glorify imperialist adventures, rape, slaughter and exploitation , we are doomed to continue waging wars where working class people will kill each other for no gain whatsoever.
    It goes on and on. Look at the brits in Iraq?
    What the *** are they doing in Iraq? Can somebody please tell me why british troops are in Iraq in 2005?
    The fact of commemorating an imperial battle when british working class kids are on the front line of a new imperialist adventure is disgraceful and i think alot of news sources showed their real colours by their coverage of this farce.

  • kevser

    The Trafalgar warfest is a very good example of the british recationary mindset.
    As long as we continue to glorify imperialist adventures, rape, slaughter and exploitation , we are doomed to continue waging wars where working class people will kill each other for no gain whatsoever.
    It goes on and on. Look at the brits in Iraq?
    What the *** are they doing in Iraq? Can somebody please tell me why british troops are in Iraq in 2005?
    The act of commemorating an imperialist battle while british working class kids are on the front line of a new imperialist adventure is shocking and I think alot of news sources showed their real colours by their coverage of this farce.

  • SeamusG

    Kevser,
    An imperialist adventure was prevented at Trafalgar.

  • George

    Robert Keogh,
    “No they’re not.”

    Why do you say that? France is a founding member of NATO and although it left its integrated structures in the 1960s (it’s troops don’t go under NATO command) it is still a member of the military alliance and is therefore a military ally.

    Also, serving in the British Army doesn’t automatically make you British (ask the Gurkas), it does, however, make you a loyal servant of the British.

  • mnob

    So whats the excuse for a large portion of the British army still being Irish (North & South) ?

  • mnob

    To clarify my last post was aimed at those who say that there are no irish in the british army and those that are or were, were coerced or somehow forced.

  • b13

    donnie:
    “Is the 13 your age or your IQ?”

    Brilliant post there mate, hilarious. How long did it take for you to think up this little gem, before lifting your knuckle dragging arms from the ground to punch in such an intelligent, articulate and well thought out insult.

    Keep up the good work

    Seriously

    do you practice it?

    looking stupid that is

    feel the lovex b13

  • Young Fogey

    Irishmen do not make up any part of the british army, take the shilling, the oath, the uniform and you are british.

    What an arrogant bigot you are – who gave you the right to decide who is Irish and who isn’t?

    What the *** are they doing in Iraq?

    Following the orders of their American masters.

    The act of commemorating an imperialist battle while british working class kids are on the front line of a new imperialist adventure is shocking

    Actually, realtively few working class kids are on the front line – recruitment into the army is at an all time low since the beginning of the Iraq debacle and those who sign up are, well, volunteers.

    Connecting Trafalgar with Iraq is reaching a bit… it was 200 years ago.

  • davidbrew

    “Irishmen do not make up any part of the british army, take the shilling, the oath, the uniform and you are british.”

    better not tell Martin Meehan his grandad was a Brit. And didn’t some of your nation’s greatest killers (sorry heroes) wear the British uniform? Tom Barry? The two men who killed Sir Henry Wilson in cold blood , for another example.

    BTW, does this rule only apply to the army? I thought Michael Collins was employed by the Royal Mail in London- or was that Sam Maguire? And I remember the Provos did murder a postie in Newry about ten years ago, when of course they weren’t criminals, oh no siree.

    What a fatuous racist comment. Still it does open up a solution to our problems here. Conscription for the Falls Road, and hey presto, everyone’s a Jaffa!

  • George

    Davidbrew,
    Tom Barry is a war hero to the nation he fought for and like most war heroes I can think of that generally means he was also a killer.

    Funny that in your world view, the killers that fought for your nation are heroes while the ones that fought for my nation are just killers.

    Hmmm, what do you call somebody who feels their killers superior to others just because they are their killers? Supremacist perhaps?

    It was Sam Maguire worked in London, a fine Irish Protestant who signed Michael Collins up to freedom’s cause.

  • SeamusG

    George, Michael Collins worked in London for the Post Office. Not sure that it’s relevant to this thread but anyway he did.

  • Jimmy_Sands

    Does that make him the first post nationalist?

  • Biffo

    Young Fogey

    “Connecting Trafalgar with Iraq is reaching a bit… it was 200 years ago.”.

    Hardly, the British have been interfering in Iraqi affairs for that long.

    Trafalgar played it’s part in their ability to do so.

    Over the past couple of centuries they’ve spent as much time in Iraq as out of it and what they are trying to do now is much the same as what they were trying to do 150 years ago.

  • Biffo

    “What a fatuous racist comment. Still it does open up a solution to our problems here. Conscription for the Falls Road, and hey presto, everyone’s a Jaffa!”

    No need David, they never tried it on the Shankill Road, and everyone’s a Jaffa!

  • GavBelfast

    “Does that make him the first post nationalist?”

    Probably, and a pillar of society to some.

    (See what you’ve started.)

    😉

  • Martin Dub

    “didn’t some of your nation’s greatest killers (sorry heroes) wear the British uniform? Tom Barry?”

    Tom Barry was Iraqs original insurgent no doubt. He was in Mesopotamia in WW1, it was his job at the time. Id say many republicans find it very hard to square this circle. In fairness war was all Tom Barry was good at.

  • George

    “The British had gone down into the mire to destroy us and our Nation and down after them we had to go.” – Tom Barry 1920

  • Young Fogey

    Hardly, the British have been interfering in Iraqi affairs for that long.

    Not quite – only about half that long. There wasn’t such a place as Iraq 200 years ago anyway.

  • Biffo

    “Not quite – only about half that long..”

    185 years to be precise, 15 years after the battle of Trafalger.

    “..There wasn’t such a place as Iraq 200 years ago anyway”

    There wasn’t such a name, there was such a place.

  • davidbrew

    The British had gone down into the mire to destroy us and our Nation and down after them we had to go.” – Tom Barry 1920

    Posted by: George at July 6, 2005

    Ah that’s right, I forgot about those two middle aged British unarmed policemen who had got down in the mire by escorting some explosives when they so thoughtlessly got themselves murderedat Soloheadbeg.

    Or perhaps the British got down in the mire by not recognising the specious SF mandate of the 1918 general election which dozens of threads on this website have comprehensively proved to be a myth.

    Tom Barry was a squalid little psychopath- not unique in Ireland, on any side, of course, but a rarity in that he is so glorified, and was a member of your country’s pseudo-aristocracy after partition. it always amuses me how quickly people like George rush to whitewash his career. He had no alternative? Hogwash. He could have kept on trying to win a democratic mandate for change, and if he didn’t get one then he should have got on with his otherwise humdrum life.

    But then if everyone was a democrat, who would have listened to a mouthy barman from The Duke of York with a straggly beard and a ragbag of Marxist policies past their sell by date, or a former butcher from Londonderry with a empathy for Red Indians? Yup, terrorist chic has a long history in the irish Republic.

    And Michael Collins wouldn’t get my stamp of approval either, Gavbelfast.

  • Martin Dub

    “Tom Barry was a squalid little psychopath- not unique in Ireland, on any side, of course, but a rarity in that he is so glorified, and was a member of your country’s pseudo-aristocracy after partition. it always amuses me how quickly people like George rush to whitewash his career. He had no alternative? Hogwash. He could have kept on trying to win a democratic mandate for change, and if he didn’t get one then he should have got on with his otherwise humdrum life.”

    Can’t let this attack on Tom Barry go without a reply. First of all this idea about him being a member of a pseudo-aristocracy after partition is rubbish. Many IRA men “sold out” for the money, the status etc, by entering the Dáil in 1921 /1926,swearing an oath of allegiance to the Queen, and accepting partition. Tom Barry didn’t. He was outside the pseudo-aristocracy you refer too.

    Second, u say about the democratic alternative to change. Remember Tom Barry was an army man. The democratically elected government declared the Republic in 1919 (your opinion of the 1918 election is bollox – simple facts, look at the seat totals)It was his job to defend it. Same way the British Army Generals have to take their cue from the politicians when it comes to Iraq.

  • Jim

    “Was the Irish Navy Right to Join In Trafalgar 200 Celebrations?”

    What Navy?

  • Marcus

    Naval Service would be more correct as it’s really more about fisheries protection etc than about anything the word Navy would conjure up in a British or American mind say. The whole thing consists of eight patrol boats and about 1100 personnel with about 400 in the reserve with some motor launches etc.

    But coming back to the attacks on Tom Barry as a pyschopath. A lot of this nonsense about him seems to relate back to the dubious claims put forward by people like Peter Hart that he gunned down Auxillaries after they surrendered. Tom Barry has never struck me as particularly fanatical even personally, he seems to have had no active disdain or dislike for British soldiers, just felt they should not have been there. He strikes me as a simple and direct type, a stereotypical soldier if you will, as oppossed to say the intellectuals like Ernie O’Malley or Liam Mellows of the republican movement of that era.

    “But then if everyone was a democrat, who would have listened to a mouthy barman from The Duke of York with a straggly beard and a ragbag of Marxist policies past their sell by date, or a former butcher from Londonderry with a empathy for Red Indians? Yup, terrorist chic has a long history in the irish Republic.”

    Nice snobby tone in there underneath that you know – what qualifications does someone need before they are judged worth listening to then?