Black and tan atrocities in ireland
The Black and Tans by Richard BennettVery conflicted about this book. Its a discussion of the Irish battle for Independence, using the force the British created to fight the IRA, the Royal Irish Constabulary Special Reserve. Although it sounds like a good Whiskey, but it turned out to be crew of angry WWI veterans, who took their many frustrations out on the Irish populace. Since the IRA were fairly indiscriminate killers too, it makes for sad reading. It boils down to a series of outrages and Reprisals that just makes the whole struggle a festival of violent insanity.
I usually go into the facts of the book in this section. But it really is just story of one crime after another, usually alternating the miscreants between the Freedom Fighter/Terrorist/IRA volunteers and the RIC, although the IRA does manage to assault more actual combatants. The RIC, usually reacting to a criminal act, often just burn and loot the area where the crime occurred in Reprisal. Even as the British Anti-Terror intelligence police got better and better at penetrating the IRA, and seem to have it almost destroyed, the political tables are turned. The Black and Tans and the Auxiliaries, another group of Unruly Armed police had alienated most pro-British sentiment, at home and abroad(The USA was and IS the main source of IRA funds). After trying to snuff out the IRA with even more violence, the forces were withdrawn or stood down by 1922, and real negotiations for Irish Independence were underway.
This book is not too challenging for junior readers, but the constant tale of Semi-random (calling this war clearly directed on either side is ridiculous)Violence may be too much for a smart but sensitive kid, its just on almost every page. I found myself just disgusted with every character in this book, from Michael Collins to Lloyd George. And since this is a story of murders, bombings, and house burnings, very few battles or skirmishes, this is not great for Gamers/Modellers/Military Enthusiasts, except maybe for fans of death cults. Its a good book on a topic that will make you wonder how Ireland is so nice now, and know why Northern Irelands troubles were robust for so long. A rec- but a qualified one. I read often about the use of controlled violence- reading about uncontrolled violence is very depressing.
Who were the Black-and-tans?
Connolly recently wrote a paper arguing that history may have underestimated the number of sexual assaults and violent attacks on women in Ireland between and Another letter written by a woman in the Midlands described her ordeal at the hands of IRA members when they came to loot the home she shared with her elderly aunt and uncle. She was a single woman, she was raped and when she fell pregnant, she concealed the pregnancy and then gave her baby up for adoption. For some who did come forward, there was no prosecution. There is hard evidence, Conolly said, of instances in which women had their hair shaved off as a punishment. Eileen Barker was one such victim.
To renew a subscription please login first. When the republican campaign against the Royal Irish Constabulary RIC and others thought sympathetic to Dublin Castle became more violent and successful in late , the police abandoned hundreds of rural facilities to consolidate shrinking ranks in fewer, fortified stations. The pressure exerted directly on RIC men, their families, friends and those who did business with them resulted in unfilled vacancies from casualties, resignations and retirements.
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Historian and author David Leeson says the Black and Tans weren't as bad as everyone portrays., Ireland was in a state of chaos from the Irish war of independence that begun in IRA attacks against the British authorities, and particularly against the Royal Irish Constabulary RIC , intensified forcing many policemen to resign through fear of assassination and social ostracism.
Ken Loach's film on the Irish war of independence and civil war will no doubt generate much debate about the merits of political violence. The release of The Wind that Shakes the Barley will tap into the vigorous discussion which preceded and followed the recent military parade in Dublin to mark the 90th anniversary of the Easter Rising. Understandably, much will be made of the savagery of the crown forces during the period. Perhaps the old hoary chestnut about the infamous Black and Tans being composed of convicted criminals will appear again. Three years ago, the Bureau of Military History files documenting the experiences of IRA volunteers and others during the period were finally released to the public.
Most of the recruits came from Britain, although it also had some members from Ireland. The nickname "Black and Tans" arose from the colours of the improvised uniforms they initially wore, composed of mixed khaki British Army and black RIC uniform parts. The Black and Tans became known for their attacks on civilians and civilian property. The issue of Home Rule was shelved with the outbreak of World War I , and in Irish republicans staged the Easter Rising against British rule in an attempt to establish a republic. In January , the British government started advertising in British cities for men willing to "face a rough and dangerous task", helping to boost the ranks of the RIC in policing an increasingly anti-British Ireland.
But some Irish-Americans have given the "Black and Tan" flavour a reception that is cold to the point of frigidity, complaining of its associations with one of the most notorious forces ever seen in Ireland. The Vermont-based company, unaware of origins of the name, based the new flavour on a drink that uses stout. The ice-cream launched in the US this month but it is now debatable whether Ireland will get a taste. It is difficult to know whether the arrival of Black and Tan flavour ice-cream could cause controversy and outcry in Ireland, but it would certainly generate a great deal of conversation and debate. Although the Black and Tans force was deployed for only a couple of years, from to , nationalist Ireland still associates it with murder, brutality, massacre and indiscipline in the years leading to southern Ireland's independence. In this instance, its reputation is not based on any republican propaganda and exaggeration, since there is no dispute that "the Tans" killed and destroyed on a large scale. Nor did they make any secret of their ferocious reprisals.