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09-11-2018, 21:22   #1
patsman07
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Irish Parliamentary Party-Policy on British Wars Other than WW1

As most people will know, John Redmond as leader of the Irish parliamentary party supported the British War effort in World War One and encouraged the Volunteers to join up. This turned out to be a political mistake and was one of the reasons for the party's downfall.

I've been trying to find out if Redmond's policy was in keeping with party policy on other British wars from that era. E.g. The Boer War, Boxer Rebellion etc. I cannot find any information on this. Any ideas?
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09-11-2018, 22:23   #2
Ascendant
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Originally Posted by patsman07 View Post
As most people will know, John Redmond as leader of the Irish parliamentary party supported the British War effort in World War One and encouraged the Volunteers to join up. This turned out to be a political mistake and was one of the reasons for the party's downfall.

I've been trying to find out if Redmond's policy was in keeping with party policy on other British wars from that era. E.g. The Boer War, Boxer Rebellion etc. I cannot find any information on this. Any ideas?
I gather that the IPP was against imperialist ventures, or at least coolly indifferent, as a matter of course.

Redmond's support for the British war effort was a reaction to the political needs of its time, with the need to match Ulster Unionism's own support and to get brownie points with Westminster when it came to the implementation of Home Rule, specifically whether to allow Partition.
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16-11-2018, 17:14   #3
Snickers Man
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Originally Posted by patsman07 View Post

I've been trying to find out if Redmond's policy was in keeping with party policy on other British wars from that era. E.g. The Boer War, Boxer Rebellion etc. I cannot find any information on this. Any ideas?
Whatever about IPP policy there were very mixed feelings in Dublin about the Boer War. On the one hand there were many Irish soldiers serving in the British Army, many of whom were highly decorated including Rugby International Tom Crean (NOT the South Pole guy, another one) who won the Victoria Cross. The Royal Dublin Fusiliers who died in that conflict are commemorated on the gate leading into St Stephen's Green at the top of Grafton Street Dublin.

However, there was also great sympathy among many for the Boers. Not only was the aforementioned gate colloquially known as Traitors' Gate (although it wasn't erected until after the war) but the Boers and Paul Kruger, president of the Boer Republics were local heroes.

There is a pastiche of the song "the British Grenadiers" which was a popular street song which ended with the lines
"To hell with the Queen and the old Tambourine and three cheers for Kruger's Army"

Kruger was pronounced Crew-jer in the Dublin vernacular and the "tambourine" refers to the circular shield in Victoria's hand that appeared on many coins of the time.
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19-11-2018, 19:38   #4
LennoxR
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The IPP was split at the time between Parnell and anti-Parnellites and the only thing that united them was opposition to the Boer War, which actually seems to have helped them to heal the rift.

There's a good article on this here. https://www.persee.fr/doc/irlan_0183..._num_17_2_1086

Michael Davitt resigned his seat at Westminster over the war and wrote a pamphlet, the 'Boer fight for Freedom'. Willie Redmond, (John's brother who later died in British uniform in France in 1917) sat alongside IRB members on the 'Transvaal Committee' which raised funds for the Boers and the Irish Brigade who fought on their behalf.

John Redmond's backing of the British war effort in 1914 was completely unprecedented for his party and would not have happened outside the Home Rule context of 1912-14. In 1918 the IPP led by John Dillon returned to a more familiar line in backing the campaign against conscription.
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