Collins and de Valera : Friends or Foes ? - Persée
He deplores that the Collins/De Valera Pact was not given the chance it deserved , . in relation to the Oath of Allegiance provided for in Article 17 of the Treaty. ; test Michael Mills contends that not only was de Valera aware of the ambush being prepared for Collins but . There is good evidence to suggest that the friendly relationship between Collins and Dev began to suffer after. TWO THINGS CAN be said of Éamon de Valera without fear of contradiction: @Eamon: Why did Dev send Collins,a soldier, to England to.
He thought at the time he might as well have been killed in the Rising. The Long Fellow duly took up the challenge by presenting what became known as Document No 2.
Eamon DeValera: the assassination of Michael Collins
But I say, that small difference makes all the difference. Although the British king was still nominally supreme — with a supposed right to veto legislation, he was really only a figurehead with no actual power, even in Britain. Canada, Australia, and South Africa were so far away that Britain could not interfere in their affairs, but Ireland was so close that the British would interfere in Irish affairs at will in the name of the king.
Thus, Ireland needed something extra to ensure against British interference. It would be a stepping-stone to the desired independence.
Inthe Statute of Westminster became law just five days after the 10th anniversary of the Anglo-Irish Treaty, formally recognising dominion independence. De Valera candidly admitted on coming to power a few months later that he had underestimated the freedom conferred by the Treaty.
Irish Free State offensive With Dublin in pro-treaty hands, conflict spread throughout the country. The war started with the anti-treaty forces holding CorkLimerick and Waterford as part of a self-styled Munster Republic. However, since the anti-treaty side were not equipped to wage conventional war, Liam Lynch was unable to take advantage of the Republicans' initial advantage in numbers and territory held. He hoped simply to hold the Munster Republic long enough to force Britain to re-negotiate the treaty.
Michael Collins, Richard Mulcahy and Eoin O'Duffy planned a nationwide Free State offensive, dispatching columns overland to take Limerick in the west and Waterford in the south-east and seaborne forces to take counties Cork and Kerry in the south and Mayo in the west. Cork and Fenitthe port of Traleein Co. Another seaborne expedition to Mayo in the west secured government control over that part of the country.
While in some places the Republicans had put up determined resistance, nowhere were they able to defeat regular forces armed with artillery and armour. The only real conventional battle during the Free State offensive, the Battle of Killmallockwas fought when Free State troops advanced south from Limerick.
Guerrilla phase of the Irish Civil War Government victories in the major towns inaugurated a period of guerrilla warfare. They held out in areas such as the western part of counties Cork and Kerry in the south, county Wexford in the east and counties Sligo and Mayo in the west.
Sporadic fighting also took place around Dundalkwhere Frank Aiken and the Fourth Northern Division of the Irish Republican Army were based, and Dublin, where small-scale but regular attacks were mounted on Free State troops. August and September saw widespread attacks on Free State forces in the territories that they had occupied in the July—August offensive, inflicting heavy casualties on them.
Arthur Griffith, the Free State president, had also died of a brain haemorrhage ten days before, leaving the Free State government in the hands of W. For a brief period, with rising casualties among its troops and its two principal leaders dead, it looked as if the Free State might collapse.
However, as winter set in, the republicans found it increasingly difficult to sustain their campaign, and casualty rates among National Army troops dropped rapidly.
For instance, in County Sligo, 54 people died in the conflict, of whom all but eight had been killed by the end of September. Despite these successes for the National Army, it took eight more months of intermittent warfare before the war was brought to an end.
By late and earlythe Anti-Treaty guerrillas' campaign had been reduced largely to acts of sabotage and destruction of public infrastructure such as roads and railways. However, by then the anti-treaty side held no significant territory and de Valera's government had no authority over the population. Atrocities and executions[ edit ] Main article: By instituting martial law, the first democratically elected Free State had in effect suspended most, if not all civil rights of the Irish population for the duration of the conflict.
The legislation, commonly referred to as the Public Safety Billempowered military tribunals with the ability to impose life imprisonment, as well as the death penalty, for a variety of offences.
By allowing appointed courts martial to execute any Irish citizen found in possession of firearms or ammunition, the Free State prevented Republican sympathizers from storing any arms or ammunition that could be used by Republican forces; possession of even a single sporting or civilian firearm or round of ammunition could result in execution by firing squad.
Offences included attacks on state policy or military forces, donning army or police uniforms, publication of "seditious publications", and membership in the Republican Army. The final phase of the Civil War degenerated into a series of atrocities that left a lasting legacy of bitterness in Irish politics.
They were followed on 24 November by the execution of acclaimed author and treaty negotiator Erskine Childers. In all, the Free State sanctioned 77 official executions of anti-treaty prisoners during the Civil War. On 7 Decemberthe day after Hales' killing, four prominent Republicans one from each provincewho had been held since the first week of the war— Rory O'ConnorLiam MellowsRichard Barrett and Joe McKelvey — were executed in revenge for the killing of Hales.
In addition, Free State troops, particularly in County Kerrywhere the guerrilla campaign was most bitter, began the summary execution of captured anti-treaty fighters.
The most notorious example of this occurred at Ballyseedy, where nine Republican prisoners were tied to a landminewhich was detonated, killing eight and only leaving one, Stephen Fullerwho was blown clear by the blast, to escape.
The Catholic Church also supported the Free State, deeming it the lawful government of the country, denouncing the Anti-Treaty IRA and refusing to administer the Sacraments to anti-treaty fighters. On 10 Octoberthe Catholic Bishops of Ireland issued a formal statement, describing the anti-treaty campaign as: All who in contravention of this teaching, participate in such crimes are guilty of grievous sins and may not be absolved in Confession nor admitted to the Holy Communion if they persist in such evil courses.
The Church's support for the Free State aroused bitter hostility among some republicans. Although the Catholic Church in independent Ireland has often been seen as a triumphalist Church, a recent study has found that it felt deeply insecure after these events. The State's executions of Anti-Treaty prisoners, 34 of whom were shot in Januaryalso took its toll on the Republicans' morale.
In addition, the National Army's operations in the field were slowly but steadily breaking up the remaining Republican concentrations. Tom Barry proposed a motion to end the war, but it was defeated by 6 votes to 5.
Fascinating tales from Éamon de Valera’s darkest days | Irish Examiner
It is often suggested that the death of Lynch allowed the more pragmatic Frank Aikenwho took over as IRA Chief of Staff, to call a halt to what seemed a futile struggle.
Aiken's accession to IRA leadership was followed on 30 April by the declaration of a ceasefire on behalf of the anti-treaty forces. On 24 MayAiken followed this with an order to IRA volunteers to dump arms rather than surrender them or continue a fight that they were incapable of winning.
Soldiers of the Republic. He followed that 42 year period of dominance with another 14 as President of Ireland, a ceremonial but still highly visible position. But while he was dominant, he was also divisive. For instance, he was the only two-term President who had to face a contest for his second term.
Provoked strongly divergent views Throughout his life and his long political career, de Valera provoked strongly divergent views. Significant obstacles to overcome His first rise to power took him from the rural obscurity of Bruree in County Limerick to the leadership of nationalist Ireland. He had significant obstacles to overcome. There were question marks over his paternity, and over whether his parents were really married, question marks which bothered him greatly.