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Did Irish Republican violence ever achieve anything?

#1
I was at a loose end in Dublin recently, and decided to wander round the key sites of the 1916 Rising. It got me to thinking, what was the point? Home Rule had been promised for after the War, so why fight in 1916, without overwhelming popular support?

Furthermore, the various rebellions in the 18th and 19th centuries hadn't won enough popular support to gain independence, either.

IRA campaigns through to the present day didn't result in the unification of Ireland, and haven't yet. SF can point to their democratic mandate, but that's votes won, not bodies buried. They may achieve control of the North through demographics, but again, that's not a direct result of how many British soldiers they've killed. From an English point of view, I would even contest that this violence achieved an atmosphere in which their demands were taken seriously.

Unionist violence, or the threat of it, well that's a different story, I would submit.

I don't live there, and my friends and colleagues don't discuss this with any kind of ease, so I'm looking for informed opinion in the anonymity of the internet.
 

Bouillabaisse

LE
Book Reviewer
#2
Overall the 1916 rising gave the republucans some modern martyrs to hang on to and a growing feeling in southern Ireland that nothing less than independence would do. As a military effort it was a dasaster but as a rallying symbol it was highly effective. It also demonstrated Irish determination for self governance, raised the issue higher up the agenda in the USA and caused some repugnance (at least the executions) in the chattering classes in England.

And Home Rule may have been promised but it was no means certain it would happen. The arming of the loyalists in the north and the support they were perceived to have in the army and amongst the Tories meant that it could conceivably been prevented.
 
#4
It taught the Americans to give to the good old boys back in the old country

and when it happened to them big time they told the world how supporting terrorism was a bad thing



(PS Gonna delete this in a minute..... :twisted: )
 
#5
hairyhandbag said:
It taught the Americans to give to the good old boys back in the old country

and when it happened to them big time they told the world how supporting terrorism was a bad thing



(PS Gonna delete this in a minute..... :twisted: )
Why, it's class!
 

seaweed

LE
Book Reviewer
#6
Irish terrorist violence appears to me to have been highly successful, first in separating the South from the UK and then in destroying the will of the UK Govt to put down crime in the North, where numerous murderers and terrorists seem to me to have got off scot free and the law enforcement has been handed over to the criminal filth themselves.
 

Bouillabaisse

LE
Book Reviewer
#8
Its a shame this thread is about Irish terrorism, which will be terribly emotive on arrse, rather than terrorism in general. Speaking generally, using terrorism as a mechanism for solical or political change does work if the majority of the inhabitants either support or don't care about the issues and if you're prepared to go in for the long haul. It also depends on how robust the civil power is at dealing with the terrorists. In NI we got to a point where the terrorists realised they couldn't win by terrorism as the British government was in for the long haul and we realised that, within the political and legal framework we voluntarily constrained ourselves by, that we couldn't win. So negotiation and compromise is the answer.
 
#9
Good summary of NI. I'll try and learn that off by heart to recite to the next person who, on learning that I'm Irish, asks me about "the war" and how things are going.

PK
 
#11
For a viewpoint of recent years, see Henry MacDonald's "Gunsmoke and Mirrors."

As for 1916, when Tim Collins was in Dublin a couple of years ago he pointed out that the hamfisted responce to the Rising turned the aims of a band of fanatics into the will of a nation.
 
#14
angular said:
It got me to thinking, what was the point? Home Rule had been promised for after the War, so why fight in 1916, without overwhelming popular support?
Have a read of Wikipedia about Home Rule and the 1918 Irish Elections.
Home Rule, as envisioned in 1914 would have had Ireland remaining as a part of the UK, more like what is now referred to as devolved government. The status quo would have continued. Ireland was an agricultural country and a lot, or the majority, of the land was owned by absentee British landlords.

Sinn Fein won 73 of 103 seats in the November 1918 Irish election. From that time, the British had no mandate in the south of Ireland, yet the Anglo-Irish war began and continued until July 1921. Why was that? Why were the British still there?

They stayed because rule from Britain had never been voluntary, it was imposed and maintained by force of arms. Since the British didn’t leave when asked, armed force got them out and changed the country from a land of tenant farmers. The function of the British Empire was always to exploit its colonies.

1969 on; I haven't a clue. The Civil Rights movement hoped to rectify the discrimination and inequalities which would never have been tolerated elsewhere in the UK. The violent response to a march on Bloody Sunday resurrected the IRA.
 
#15
"put murderers into power? "

Yes Gimp
I'll agree with that.

Violence allows the extremist's to rise to the top with their blood stained hands.
john
 
#16
What onetap said!

Home rule would have merely granded dominion status, the majority of the Irish Volunteers joined the British Army and fought for Britain in the WW1. When the minority remainer (who had no public support, they were spat at by Dubliners as they were marched to prison) saw what was happening in Flanders the Rebellion started.

When the public saw how those who fought in the Easter Rebellion were treated they gained massive public support!!
 
#17
irlsgt said:
What onetap said!

Home rule would have merely granded dominion status, the majority of the Irish Volunteers joined the British Army and fought for Britain in the WW1. When the minority remainer (who had no public support, they were spat at by Dubliners as they were marched to prison) saw what was happening in Flanders the Rebellion started.

When the public saw how those who fought in the Easter Rebellion were treated they gained massive public support!!
Isn't that what the Free State was granted anyway?
 
#18
Onetap said:
Have a read of Wikipedia about Home Rule and the 1918 Irish Elections.
Home Rule, as envisioned in 1914 would have had Ireland remaining as a part of the UK, more like what is now referred to as devolved government.
And that about sums-up what was desired by the majority of those who even gave it any thought.
The status quo would have continued. Ireland was an agricultural country and a lot, or the majority, of the land was owned by absentee British landlords.
It mattered not a jot who owned the land, an Irish Parliament could and would have altered the "status quo."

Sinn Fein won 73 of 103 seats in the November 1918 Irish election. From that time, the British had no mandate in the south of Ireland, yet the Anglo-Irish war began and continued until July 1921. Why was that? Why were the British still there?
Because the same thing that always stymied Home Rule still existed; a large majority in the north of Ireland who refused to be separated from the Union. Britain would have been accused of creating the Civil War that followed. The "Anglo-Irish" war bought time for the division of Ireland. That the Irish then went on to have their own bloody Civil War without British involvement tends to make the point.

1969 on; I haven't a clue. The Civil Rights movement hoped to rectify the discrimination and inequalities which would never have been tolerated elsewhere in the UK. The violent response (provoked by PIRA) to a march on Bloody Sunday resurrected the IRA.
Fixed.
 
#19
Onetap said:
angular said:
It got me to thinking, what was the point? Home Rule had been promised for after the War, so why fight in 1916, without overwhelming popular support?
Have a read of Wikipedia about Home Rule and the 1918 Irish Elections.
Home Rule, as envisioned in 1914 would have had Ireland remaining as a part of the UK, more like what is now referred to as devolved government. The status quo would have continued. Ireland was an agricultural country and a lot, or the majority, of the land was owned by absentee British landlords.

Sinn Fein won 73 of 103 seats in the November 1918 Irish election. From that time, the British had no mandate in the south of Ireland, yet the Anglo-Irish war began and continued until July 1921. Why was that? Why were the British still there?

They stayed because rule from Britain had never been voluntary, it was imposed and maintained by force of arms. Since the British didn’t leave when asked, armed force got them out and changed the country from a land of tenant farmers. The function of the British Empire was always to exploit its colonies.

1969 on; I haven't a clue. The Civil Rights movement hoped to rectify the discrimination and inequalities which would never have been tolerated elsewhere in the UK. The violent response to a march on Bloody Sunday resurrected the IRA.
First bold - correct. You haven't a clue.

Second bold. The IRA had never gone away since and this showed itself in various attacks and campaigns e.g the Border Campaign. The Officials called a ceasefire in 1972. PIRA already existed and the wiki piece you read on the thirty year campaign is about 70% correct and 30% bollox. PIRA were militarily defeated by 1975 but the Gobment did not have the cojones to terminate every fecker on the Terrorist Grouping Summary.
 
#20
The Provies fought a 30 year war to remove the British presence from ireland, a idology that was doomed from the start since the British presence here is not the British Army but the British people ie us unionists, they did flirt with the idea of trying to remove us with thier resettlement grant idea that was proposed in a sinn fein manifesto launched in the 80's, the idea being that in the event of a united ireland we would be offered grants to resettle to scotland. This idea was quickly and quietly dropped when they found out that what they were proposing could be construed as a policy on ethnic cleansing. For this reason 'Brits out' became 'Demilitarisation'. again they failed in this rspect as the British army is still garrisoned here.
They went to prison, died on hunger strike to remove 'british rule from ireland' here they really failed because not only is northern ireland still part of the UK, sinn fein are now helping to adminster 'british rule in ireland' by being part of the stormont executive within Northern Ireland.
In conculsion it seems the provies fought a 30 year war for bugger all, oh and wikisinnfeinpeda is actully about 30% (and i am being generous) and 70% bollox
 

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