Response to Jimmy.

Standard

If we were prosperous how do you explain mass immigration or the famine?
And this legality involving the British Empire was foisted on us and enforced by whom?
Yes, the Easter Rising was a terrible crime. How else would one explain the bombing of the city and the utter contempt for civilian lives? One of the reasons the rebels surrendered was because of the casualties mounting in the city. None of the rebels had expected the crown to bomb one of it’s capital cities. If only if it had of been like in the Michael Collins film..Crown forces targeting only a legitimate target. One has to turn to old newsreel footage to see the true cost of the British Empire flexing it’s muscles. After the failed Rising the rebels must’ve felt utterly miserable as they marched away surrounded by the anger of Dublin’s citizens. The Rising and subsequent executions did have the desired effect though. The Irish people had been reminded that they were under the British heel. Collins realised after this that open warfare was a pointless and wasteful exercise.
The first crime is that the British invaded Ireland at all. The other crime is that the British Empire was willing to crush innocent people that it considered it’s subjects, just as an example to others who dared to be their own countries. Empires were becoming outdated. We were on the cusp of the atomic age…a world ruled by superpowers. The British Empire was fighting the inevitable. All that was needed was for a fledgling nation to learn a new kind of warfare. The twentieth century saw more progress than any other century in human history, this includes in warfare and nation building. The British Empire was trying to slice air. It just didn’t know it yet.
So your saying that an oppressed nation shouldn’t try stand up to that oppression? If that had happened everywhere, since the age of enlightenment, we wouldn’t be now enjoying all the comforts that the modern iterations of countries give us. We also wouldn’t have how we interact and treat each other that much of the first world also enjoy. The majority of the world are now democrises. The problem with modern Britain and indeed with Trump is that they can’t see the inevitable march towards unity of nations. Their bucking against progress. It won’t work. Just like the British Empire behaving like it was the 19th century didn’t work in the early 1900’s. Ireland’s part of a larger European community. We live in the 21st century.I’m a man of few means but I’m always aware that I enjoy what my ancestors would consider a life of luxury because they fought oppression. You should be grateful too.
Home rule wouldn’t have worked because Empires were dying out. Again you should be grateful for events like the American and French revolutions and the birth of Republicanism. All these kind of events all over the world led to better standards of living, more rapid progress, more cooperation between nations and a substantially accelerated evolution of culture, politics, humanity and on and on and on. You can’t see that though because you can only see your little part of the world. In a Republic one can express their identity, in an old fashioned colonial mindset such as yours one can only express ones isolationism. Remember whose patch of land your ancestors planted. Do you want to come as friends now and prosper or would you rather rot in the past? The truth is once Britain leaves the EU it’s possible in the years to come England will find itself on it’s own. Then it will have to change it’s mindset in the face of progress.
For a college educated individual you sound like Britain’s answer to a holocaust denier. If the British Empire hadn’t behaved brutally it wouldn’t have been an Empire, if it hadn’t of continued to behave brutally it wouldn’t have remained an Empire for so long. That’s just the way it was. But times have changed. Move on.
The United Kingdom is slowly and blindly turning itself into the British Empires dying gasp. If I were you I’d jump ship.

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  1. Immigration was by no means unique to Ireland. There was much emigration from GB too. The difference between the proportion of people who emigrated out of Ireland and GB was not huge. There were push factors which included republican terrorism and the overweening influence of the Catholic Church. When Southern Ireland left the UK emigration did not grind to a halt! Ireland’s lowest population figures were in the 60s. There were pull factors to immigration such as free land in the USA. Irish people were often moving to GB or British colonies. We are very imperialistic. In the early 19th century our population exploded. By your rational that meant we were prosperous. The Famine was an immense tragedy. It was a natural catastrophe. The government helped but not enough. There were famines throughout history. Does that meant independence prior to the 12th century was bad?

2. I disagree that there was contempt for civilian lives. Very few civilians were deliberately killed by the Crown Forces. Those who murdered civilians were prosecuted. artillery was used as it is in all large scale engagements. The Irish Volunteers knew this. They chose to fight in a very built up area. Had artillery not been used the fight would have gone on longer. More would have died for thirst, wounds and being shot by mistake. The blame lies entirely with the IRA. It was moronic to claim that artillery would not be used. It was used in 1798.

 

3. There was little concept of British in the 12 century when the King of Leinster invited Strongbow in. Ireland was only semi united then. The High King soon did homage to Henry II. The Synod of Cashel and the Treaty of Windsor prove that our ecclesiatical and political rulers agreed to our connection to England and Wales. Those lands were ruled by people who were really Norman. Same as us. But the English and Welsh got over it. Many in Ireland still moan and bear a grudge.

4. The rebels of 1916 were justly punished. I do not like the death penalty. It was uncontroversial in principle at the time. These men had fair courts martial – same as the British Army gave its own men. Clarke invited death by saying he would do it again given the chance. The executions were not rushed. There was no manipulation of public opinion. It is true that this changed some people’s minds. 10 000s Irishmen had volunteered for the British military – our military. The rebels were traitors for going against fellow Irishman. The IRB invited in German troops! None came. If they had we would have experienced real oppression!

 

4. The British Empire did enormous good. We Irishmen participated in it very enthusiastically. Yes, revolts were quelled. That is the right and even the duty of all sovereign states. Few disputed that the empire was legal at the time. Vast numbers of people in the colonies willingly served this force for civilisation. Famine relief, irrigation, literacy, technology, transport, science and modern farming techniques were all disseminated by the empire. The empire abolished slavery.

5. We were not at all oppressed in 1916. We were very free and lucky to be British. The IRA were the oppressors.

6. It is true that most countries are democracries. The UK deserves much thanks for this.

7. I concur that Trump is vile. He is irrelevant here.

8. The UK is not seeking to rebuild the British Empire.

9. I am Irish and that makes me British. You are British too even if not a British citizen.

10. I absolutely not a Holocaust denier or anything akin to that. That is grossly offensive and utterly dishonest. It casts doubt on everything you have said. I do not dispute that there was wrongdoing by the British Empire. The Atlantic Slave Trade occurred and was ghastliness on a huge scale. No one disputes that. Almost every allowed slavery at the time. The British were the second people on Earth to outlaw slavery and did so much to emancipate people. I have not stated any falsehoods.

I want us to dissolve the republic and rejoin the UK.

There is a lot of eurosceptic opinion in the Republic of Ireland. That is why Lisbon and Nice were defeated first time.

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About Calers

Born Belfast 1971. I read history at Edinburgh. I did a Master's at UCL. I have semi-libertarian right wing opinions. I am married with a daughter and a son. I am allergic to cats. I am the falling hope of the not so stern and somewhat bending Tories. I am a legal beagle rather than and eagle. Big up the Commonwealth of Nations.

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