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Thread: WWII Irish 'deserters' to finally get pardons

  1. #1
    Platinum Member Rattfink's Avatar
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    Default WWII Irish 'deserters' to finally get pardons

    In Ireland's war memorial gardens, the dates of both world wars are carved into the stone of a monument. But this country remained neutral in the conflict between 1939 and 1945.
    In order to fight in World War II, thousands of soldiers left the country and the Irish Army to join the British forces.
    They became known as deserters - a title intended to carry shame. And when they returned after battle many were treated as anything but heroes.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-22425684

    A bit of history with your coffee.

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    Senior Member ~UNiOnJaCk~'s Avatar
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    Much appreciation to those Irishmen that served in our forces alongside our own lads. Kudos.

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    Senior Member Connaught Ranger's Avatar
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    Among many serving and time served members of the Irish military the opinions on this matter

    are split with regards their actions.

    The categories basically fall into the following:-.

    1. Those who deserted from the Irish military after taking the oath to serve the Republic of Ireland.

    2. Those deserted from the Irish military after taking the oath to serve the Republic of Ireland to serve in a Foreign military.

    3. Those who deserted from the Irish military after taking the oath to serve the Republic of Ireland to go to work either in Northern Ireland or the U.K. for monetary reasons.

    4. Those who deserted from the Irish military after taking the oath to serve the Republic of Ireland due to the lack of moral fiber.

    The fact that their immediate families were targeted and black listed with regards school and work afterwards was wrong.

    As for the men themselves despite their reasons the broke the Law of the day and had to face the consequences.

    One other category remains but they fall outside the scope of the others:-

    Those who freely left Ireland as civilian's and joined the British Forces.

    IMHO In the actual article this piece is misleading because of the way it is worded:-
    In order to fight in World War II, thousands of soldiers left the country and the Irish Army to join the British forces.
    as is it gives a misleading impression with regards the amount of men who deserted and served with the British, it also fails to present figures of those who deserted for the other reasons listed above.

    It should have been written as follows:
    " . . . thousands of Irish men left the country (including members of the Irish Army) to join the British forces, in order to fight in World War II."
    Connaught Ranger.

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    Platinum Member Rattfink's Avatar
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    Great insight CR. Much appreciated.
    Which groups, if any, in your opinion rate the pardon?

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    Senior Member Connaught Ranger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rattfink View Post
    Great insight CR. Much appreciated.
    Which groups, if any, in your opinion rate the pardon?

    I.M.H.O. they (the military deserters) took an oath and the broke that oath (regardless of what reasons) so were NOT to be trusted and deserve no pardon.

    The Government of the day was wrong to Blacklist their families for the actions of the men themselves, thus the families should get an apology.

    Neither should the civilian status Irish men who freely enlisted and served in the British Military be lumped in and tarred with the same brush for the actions, as those of the military deserters.

    Connaught Ranger.

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    I read something similar about Irish fishermen and seamen who left to sign up for Atlantic convoys and the British navy, a fair few came back to a less than rosy welcome although by all accounts none had any regrets.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Connaught Ranger View Post

    4. Those who deserted from the Irish military after taking the oath to serve the Republic of Ireland due to the lack of moral fiber.
    I understand the others but not really this. To me going to fight in the war at such a personal cost, (charges of desertion, losing contact with family potentially etc) doesn't signify LMF

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    Senior Member Connaught Ranger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by harghill1718 View Post
    I understand the others but not really this. To me going to fight in the war at such a personal cost, (charges of desertion, losing contact with family potentially etc) doesn't signify LMF
    That category:
    4. Those who deserted from the Irish military after taking the oath to serve the Republic of Ireland due to the lack of moral fiber.
    is in reference to those who deserted from the Irish military and stayed hidden in the Republic of Ireland for the duration of the war because they were afraid, and has nothing to do with regards men who went and joined the British military.

    Connaught Ranger.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Connaught Ranger View Post
    That category: is in reference to those who deserted from the Irish military and stayed hidden in the Republic of Ireland for the duration of the war because they were afraid, and has nothing to do with regards men who went and joined the British military.

    Connaught Ranger.
    Thank you for clarifying!

  10. #10
    Senior Member LoboCanada's Avatar
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    All of my Grandfathers and 1 grandfathers' brother 'deserted'.

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