The position of Ireland in WWII was a bit of a tricky one. A lot of people actually were pro German, not so much because they were agreeing with the German policies but more because they were at war with Britain, and there was still this feeling of Britain’s enemy is our friend. Many people during the Emergency thought that Ireland owed Germany a debt for her support of the Easter Rising in 1916.
On September 2,1939 The Republic of Ireland declared its neutrality, but even before that there had been fascists groupings in Ireland.
The Blue Shirts
The Army Comrades Association , later the National Guard, then Young Ireland and eventually Fine Gael, but better known by the nickname The Blueshirts , was a Right-wing movement in the Irish Free State in the early 1930s.
In 1933 Eoin O’Duffy became the leader of the Blueshirts,he re-modeled the organisation, adopting elements of German and Italian fascism.
The organisation was to have the following goals:
1.To promote the reunification of Ireland.
2.To oppose Communism and alien control and influence in national affairs and to uphold Christian principles in every sphere of public activity.
3.To promote and maintain social order.
4.To make organised and disciplined voluntary public service a permanent and accepted feature of our political life and to lead the youth of Ireland in a movement of constructive national action.
5.To promote of co-ordinated national organisations of employers and employed, which with the aid of judicial tribunals, will effectively prevent strikes and lock-outs and harmoniously compose industrial influences.
6.To cooperate with the official agencies of the state for the solution of such pressing social problems as the provision of useful and economic public employment for those whom private enterprise cannot absorb.
7.To secure the creation of a representative national statutory organisation of farmers, with rights and status sufficient to secure the safeguarding of agricultural interests, in all revisions of agricultural and political policy.
8.To expose and prevent corruption and victimization in national and local administration.
9.To awaken throughout the country a spirit of combination, discipline, zeal and patriotic realism which will put the state in a position to serve the people efficiently in the economic and social spheres.
In 1935 Eoin O’Duffy split with Fine Gael and founded the National Corporate Party.Also known as the Greenshirts.
In 1936 O’Duffy led a volunteer Irish Brigade to fight for the Nationalists in the Spanish Civil War, and retired on his return in 1937. Without him, both the Greenshirts and NCP faded away.
Ailtirí na hAiséirghe
Ailtirí na hAiséirghe: meaning “Architects of the Resurrection”) was a minor radical nationalist and fascist political party in Ireland, founded by Gearóid Ó Cuinneagáin in March 1942. The party sought to form a totalitarian Irish Christian Corporatist state
Ó Cuinneagáin did have genuine global ambitions. Although he admired the ‘achievements’ of Germany and Italy, he had no desire to be seen as the local Irish representative of ‘the Hitler fan club’. On the contrary, he truly believed that a fascist Ireland could become have more influence than its Continental European counterpart, not in a militarily aspect but in an ideological manner.
Oliver J. Flanagan
Oliver James Flanagan served as a TD (Member of Parliament) for the Laois-Offaly constituency from 1943 to 1987.
Initially as an Independent he was first elected to the Dail (Irish Parliament) known for his an anti-Semitic views. From 1954 to 1987 he was a TD for Fine Gael (the current government party}
In his maiden speech on July 1943 he said the following:
“How is it that we do not see any of these Acts directed against the Jews, who crucified Our Saviour nineteen hundred years ago, and who are crucifying us every day in the week? How is it that we do not see them directed against the Masonic Order? How is it that the I.R.A. is considered an illegal organisation while the Masonic Order is not considered an illegal organisation? There is one thing that Germany did, and that was to rout the Jews out of their country. Until we rout the Jews out of this country it does not matter a hair’s breadth what orders you make. Where the bees are there is the honey, and where the Jews are there is the money.”
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