Weekly Series on Centenary of Events of 1919 - 1921.
Compiling the web's most definitive timeline of years the 131 weeks during the Irish War of Independence with daily updates @ https://twitter.com/131Weeks
Mr. George Creel was, during the entire period of the war, chairman of the Committee on Public Information of the United States Government, the committee being: George Creel, chairman; Robert Lansing, Secretary of State; Newton D. Baker,, Secretary of War; Josephus Daniels, Secretary of the Navy. Since the Peace Conference in Paris Mr. Creel, his work as Chief Official Censor of the United States Government being ended, visited Ireland, studied conditions there, and gives the results in a series of articles in the "Sunday American." In his first article Mr. Creel says:
The world is asked to consider Ireland merely as "England's domestic problem." Certain circumstances, unyielding as iron, preclude the acceptance of any such view. Not even by the utmost stretch of amiable intent can a question that strikes at, the very heart of international agreement to be set down and written off as "domestic." That magic formula "self-determination" has marched armies and tumbled empires these last few years, playing too large a part in world consciousness to be limited by any arbitrary discrimination in the hour of victory and adjustment. Even as Poles, Czechs, Jugo Slavs, Ukrainians, Finns and scores of other submerged nationalities, are struggling to the upper air of independence, so does Ireland appeal to the solemn covenant of the Allies, with its championship of the "rights of small peoples," and to the of law its sonorous assent " reign , based on the consent of the governed." In America the race has put aside the factional bitterness of the past, and stands solidly and squarely in support of Ireland's demand for justice. It is this that gives the Irish question an American aspect. In the United States there are over 15,000,000 people of Irish birth or descent, woven into the warp and woof of our national life by common aspirations and devotions. They stand implacably to-day between this country and England, crying out against any alliance, agreement, or even amity until the case of Ireland has been fairly considered and justly settled. Such a mass, instinct with intelligent emotionalism, cannot be ignored either in "honour, decency, or plain com, mon sense. This is a democracy in which the treaty-making powers of government are under the ultimate control of the electorate.
Make no doubt that the Irish vote will be a block vote against England and all things English as long as the Irish question is allowed to persist. ' It must be remembered also hat for forty years the cause of Ireland has been pleaded unceasingly in the United States by a host of brilliant and persuasive personalities with the result that a great body of liberal sentiment is firm in the belief that Irish wrongs are real and call for redress.
Nor may it be forgotten that the history of the United States, written in a spirit of bumptious nationalism, has not been calculated to make for Anglo-American understanding. The comradeship of a great' adventure in humanity merely anaesthetised this feeling, and any definite anti-English campaign will stir it to ugly life; These forces, able given unchanged conditions, will have power to direct and shape the foreign policies of the United States.
What then, is to be the attitude of those Americans who are not of Irish blood and who have no concern with the Irish question save as it bears upon the destinies of the United States? It is idle to adopt a tone of heavy reproof and talk of America first America has always been first with the Irish-American, for while love of is an unchanging passion, his allegiance, once given, is never divided by a hyphen.
Men of Ireland gave heart and strength to George Washington; they died by thousands that the Union might endure, and of the army raised by the United States to war against German absolutism, fully 15 per cent, were of Irish birth or Irish descent.
It is with this record of love and loyalty behind, them that the Irish call upon America" to lend hope, if not aid, to their unhappy motherland. It is a call to which some sort of an answer must be given.
Other nations, as well as this, are confronted with much the same problem, for there is not a civilised country of the world in which the Irish exiles have not played important parts, enriching and encouraging the native stock and lending their ardours and abilities to every national task, whether war, statecraft or administration, commerce, industry or literature.
Not the least of the many, bitterness of the Irish is that English rule forces them to rise to greatness in other lands, writing in every language, in every history a record of capacity which, if expressed in their native country, would have lifted Ireland to a high place among the nations.
Mr Creel proceeds to review the work of the Irish people in other lands than their own,- and particularly in the United States, and adds—When the United States driven to war by the outrageous and ill-faith of the Imperial German Government, called for men to support the ideals of democracy, the most instant and enthusiastic response was from the so-called Irish-Americans. Hatred of England, handed down from generation to generation through seven centuries, was put aside out of devotion to the country of their adoption and the records of the War Office are thick with Irish names and instances of Irish valour.
GEORGE CREEL SHOWS UP ULSTER REVOLT AND AFTERMATH.
CONTRAST AND TREATMENT.
In his second article Mr. George Creel writes:— 'From 1870 to 1916, Home Rule meant Ireland and Ireland meant Home Rule. The movement and the nation were one, and rang through the world in a single great appeal. For the first time in seven centuries the Irish put armed force -aside and submitted their demand for independence to "the arbitral justice of an English Parliament.
Isaac Butt may be written down as the father of Home Rule. An Ulster man, the son of a Presbyterian, his sense of fair play made him place his brilliant legal talents a the service of these unhappy scores who were drag-netted after it the Fenian uprising of '67.
The Fenians, driven by their helplessness, as well as their love and faith in Butt, gave him authority.in the name of Ireland, and in 1870 he rose in the Parliament at Westminster and launched his campaign of appeal to the justice of England.
He lived to see his optimism mocked, and his hope destroyed, a gentle soul, his greatest victory was that the English members came to listen to him in time, although -amusedly always. He lived also to see the coming of one' who was not gentle, whose words were Sledgehammers, whose tactics turned amused indifference into furious attention.
PARNELL'S COURAGEOUS FIGHT.
Charles Stewart Parnell found Parliament a legislative body and he made it a Bedlam. A man of ice and iron, hating England with a cold, deadly -hatred, a genius in leadership, a master of obstruction, his repeated filibusters soon proved conclusively that until the Irish question was considered England's legislative body need not hope to consider any other question intelligently "or consecutively.
Obstructing boldly in Westminster, he obstructed no less 'boldly in Ireland. He put himself wholeheartedly behind Davitt's Land League until all Ireland seethed with revolt; it was Parnell's fertile mind that saw the possibilities of the boycott; from North to South he preached unity, resistance and courage; arrest and imprisonment- could not check him, for from Kilmainham Jail he dictated terms to list captors.
Soon the amazing spectacle was witnessed of both parties, Liberal and Conservative bidding for the support of Parnell and his once despised following. The Tories, under Salisbury and Churchill, were more than placatory, passing many helpful Irish laws; but -while they debated as to complete surrender, Gladstone -acted pledging himself and Ins party to Home Rule. Out went the Tories at Parnell's behest, and in 1886 Gladstone introduced the first Home Rule Bill.
A Coercion Bill scourged Ireland with wholesale arrests, and even as Parnell rallied his forces to fight, letters were printed that seemed to connect him directly with the atrocious Phoenix Park murders.
GLADSTONE'S WARNING TO ENGLAND.
Forgery was proved quickly, and the wretched Pigott committed suicide, but there was that coming that struck the strong man down. A Captain O'Shea filed suit -for divorce, naming Parnell as correspondent, and the hue and cry of outraged moralists drove him from public life to die.
The scandal killed Home Rule as with a dagger thrust, and it was not until 1882 Gladstone dared to introduce a second Home Rule Bill. It swept through the House of Commons this time, just was promptly, vetoed by the House of Lords, Salisbury blandly dismissing the Irish as "Hottentots."
Old, worn, and bitterly disgusted, Gladstone retired to private life, but in a last prophetic speech 'he warned England that neither Home Rule nor any other Bill embodying social justice could ever be passed until the veto power of the House of Lords had been destroyed. Home Rule straightway identified itself with the whole English fight for progress, and in _19114he battle of years was won by the adoption of the Parliament Act, which provided that any Bill passed by the House of Commons in three successive annual sessions should automatically receive the royal assent -and become law. This meant that the plain people of England approved of self-government for Irish, for throughout this campaign "Mr. Asquith stated unequivocally that one of the first uses of the 'Parliament Act would 'be to drive through the Home Rule Bill.
This pledge was redeemed on April 11th 1912, and Home Rule swept through the House of Commons-in all its stages, only to be vetoed by the House of Lords. In no respect was it an alarming measure, for it did not even approximate the power and scope of the Canadian form of government.
It created an Irish Parliament, yes, but the Senate was to be nominated by the Government, and the Crown reserved all questions connected with the army, the navy, foreign relations, coinage, and the collection of taxes; no power over trade was granted, nor over the Post Office, nor over the Constabulary, and the Lord Lieutenant was vested with power to reverse or annul legislation enacted by the Irish Parliament. Little enough, in all truth, yet even this flavour of freedom was an offence to1 the Tories. Again in 1913 the Bill Was introduced and passed, and again he House of Lords exercised its veto powers.
TORIES ADOPT VIOLENCE OF REBELLION.
Admittedly unable to check this legislative process by peaceable means, the Tories of England had already turned to the violence of rebellion. Claiming that Ulster, the northern province of Ireland, was solidly Protestant and a unit in devotion to the British Empire, the Tories insisted that Home Rule would subject .this loyal minority to the rule of a "bigoted, shiftless Roman Catholic majority," and boldly preached resistance in terms of blood and battle.
Sinn Fein, the Irish Volunteers, Cumann na mBan, and the Gaelic League are, by proclamation published in the "Dublin Gazette," prohibited and suppressed throughout Co. Tipperary.
Two proclamations were issued, one m respect of the North Riding and the other applying to the South Riding, in identical terms. Both came into operation with publication in the " Dublin Gazette."
Each proclamation is issued by Lord French and the Privy Council in Ireland, signed by Sir John Robs and General Sir Frederick Shaw, and is dated from Dublin Castle, 4th July, 1919.
The Order prohibits and suppresses within the said County of Tipperary the Association named and described in the said Special Proclamation as—The Sinn Organisation, Sinn Fein Clubs, The Irish Volunteers, The Cumann na m-Ban, and the Gaelic League.