Revolution and counterrevolution

In this article, based on a presentation to Communist University 2016, Kevin Bean examines the subjective and objective factors that prevented the development of a powerful working class republicanism in Ireland

Easter 1916: James Connolly lies wounded

In this talk I want to outline some of the key themes of the 10 years between 1913 and 1923, a period which has become increasingly referred to as the Irish Revolution.1 These years are followed by what we might consider a period of counterrevolution beginning around 1922, when the Anglo-Irish treaty results in a new state emerging in the south of Ireland. I would like to pose some questions about the nature and limitations of Irish republicanism - both as an ideology and as an organisational form in this period.

We are in the middle of what is known in Ireland as the ‘decade of commemorations’, marked by a series of events, both state-led and delivered by the trade unions, the Labour Party and the various republican groups, celebrating the period 1912-1922. The Easter Rising centenary has been a central feature of this year, both commemorated and widely discussed throughout Ireland. By way of introduction I want to cover some of the questions raised by the commemorations themselves and in some of the current debates about their significance.

One of the most interesting and controversial questions for contemporary politics - particularly in light of the current status of the northern and southern states - is whether the revolution was fully consummated. Visitors to bookshops in Dublin or Belfast will see walls of books on the 1916 period. There has been a considerable revival of interest in these texts, making 2016 something of a golden age for historians. A significant degree of popular interest has been reflected in attendance at state commemorations and official events, as well as a whole range of ‘unofficial’ celebrations and discussions.2 The question of the successful completion of the Irish Revolution has often simply been seen in terms of the armed struggle of the Irish Republican Army. Likewise, the counterrevolution has been understood in terms of Ulster unionism and the creation of the partitionist state. However, broader questions surrounding the relationship between national struggles and socialism have become important issues to socialists throughout Europe today.

A key theme of this literature is the importance of individuals such as Éamon de Valera and Michael Collins. Indeed, one popular view explains the period simply in terms of the antipathy and difference in character between the two men. As you might expect, many books emphasise the important role of the IRA as an armed group in the national struggle and the creation of the southern state in 1922.

Two other narratives have emerged that are, in a sense, diametrically opposed to each other. One, that might be called ‘revisionist’ - although that is not always a helpful title - seems to suggest that there was no revolution or, in the words of Kevin O’Higgins, that the Irish Revolution was one of the most “conservative revolutions” ever.3 According to this argument, the general grain of Irish society was largely undisturbed, apart from a brief period of discontinuity before things got back on track. The former taoiseach, John Bruton, provided a striking example of this view, when he said that not only the Easter Rising, but the events of the whole revolutionary period, were simply a mistake and that the 26-county state would have come into existence in any event as a result of the evolutionary process of home rule. In other words, the 1916 rising lacked any democratic mandate or justification. If taken to its logical conclusions, this argument has quite shocking implications for the authority of the southern state. In fact, I can think of no other example where a former prime minister essentially pronounces the history of his own state to be illegitimate.4

Another, more positive narrative involves attempts to discover a ‘history from below’, by looking beyond the role of leaders and armed organisations, to discover a history of popular militancy, involving land seizures, industrial action and phenomena such as the Limerick Soviet.5 Considering the period in this way gives these events a revolutionary character, over and above simply being an armed struggle. However, there is another side to some of the ‘history from below’ arguments: namely, debates on the nature of the mass actions. While leftwing and republican histories frame the popular militancy positively, in other circles it is often characterised as sectarian or communal. For example, some of the actions of landless workers are portrayed as petty sectarianism, with small-scale squabbles sometimes escalating into atrocities.6

The significance of this narrative is that it is part of an attempt to particularise movements which had much wider political aims. Although people often had their own local grievances, which did play a significant role in motivating action, the idea that this national struggle was purely a patchwork of local struggles without overall coherence is very difficult to sustain. Nevertheless, attempts to smuggle this view in to the wider national story continue to be made.7

Tensions within the various mass movements - in particular, the tensions between different classes - have been brought back into the historiography alongside the role of the urban working class. There has also been a deeper exploration of unionism, which had often been portrayed in quite monolithic ways. For example, historians have drawn attention to divisions within unionism and unionist leaders’ attempts to maintain control over quite a diffuse movement. Far from being a stage army, wheeled on and wheeled off, the unionist masses were often quite unpredictable - moving sometimes to the right, sometimes to the left. Much of the work around this topic dating from the 1970s and 80s is now being developed by more specialist studies.8

Other interesting themes being explored from this period include closer readings of the thinking of the Irish left. Republicans have always looked to the rising, drawing on it as a guide for their contemporary politics: thus they will quote extensively from James Connolly, Patrick Pearse and Liam Mellows, using their works as texts from which to develop their own positions.

One question that I would like to be discussed relates to readings from the Irish left and those around Connolly. A lot of people of my generation on the left - and I suspect of succeeding generations - read Connolly through the lens of Desmond Greaves. Although everyone understands that his was something of a Stalinistic reading - including attempts to assimilate Connolly as an honorary Stalinist - I wonder if we still carry his interpretation forward with us? If you look at a lot of the material Connolly wrote, particularly during World War I, you can see that his position varied at different periods and that to see him as a fully rounded Leninist is somewhat difficult.9

Warning signs

I want to start by looking at Ireland in 1910. A time-traveller would probably not have expected the events of the following decade. Certainly the groups that were committed to revolution in Ireland, whether nationalists or socialist revolutionaries, could not have foreseen the pattern of events that was to come. The situation was very different to that in Russia, where you can see the outlines of some of the revolutionary events that were to occur. Indeed, although he wrote this in 1916, Trotsky talked about the Wyndham Act of 1903, which transferred land from larger landlords to strengthen the layer of strong farmers, indicating that the material basis for the national revolution in Ireland had gone.10

Many of the Irish politicians of that period also saw Ireland as relatively stable and believed that the creation of a strong farmer class, comparable to the kulaks, had helped provide the essential underpinning of this stability. Indeed Pyotr Stolypin, who introduced reforms after the 1905 revolution in Russia, referred to some of the patterns developing in Ireland as a model for his policies. The identification of land with national revolution, which had been such an issue in the 19th century, seemed to have disappeared. Ireland seemed now to be moving towards some form of devolved government and - with the strength of the constitutionalist nationalists, the Redmondites and the growing role of the Catholic middle class in local government, the civil service and Irish society generally - it looked as if Ireland would find a new stability under British rule.

Ireland was fairly well integrated into the British imperial economy, although it was relatively underdeveloped and its industries were mostly confined to the north-east. Urban centres elsewhere in Ireland were generally quite small, mainly dealing in services for agriculture. Even where there were examples of unrest and challenges to the existing order, these were easily contained or confined to the cultural sphere. The cultural revival of the late 19th century does throw up a critique of British rule, but this was expressed through a desire to create a distinct Irish identity and promote the Irish language, and was often content to settle for home rule and devolved government, rather than complete independence.

However, there were signs of destabilising factors. If it seemed apparent that the Catholic middle class at the higher levels of administration and business was proceeding smoothly towards home rule, many at the lower levels of society were excluded from that comfortable certainty. The excluded included the lower-middle class, who could expect to find junior positions in administration, but still felt that the union with Britain did not offer them full scope for their talents. In addition, the growing force of the working class, galvanised by the development of Larkinism and militant trade unionism, had emerged as a factor in 1907 in Belfast, and would go on to become a very significant force in the 1913 Dublin lockout. What is interesting about these developments is that they reflect the different character of the Irish economy and society in comparison with Britain. The movement often involved unskilled, casual workers, who were developing a very militant tradition, often quite volatile in comparison with the much more conservative trade unionism of the established industries in Belfast and Britain.

In many ways the 1913 lockout was a social revolt, involving not just the workers, but the local slum populations of Dublin. I am sure you will be aware from the writings of Connolly and others of the nature of those slums - some of the worst in Europe, and some of the worst living conditions of the time. The lockout and the struggles around it take on a much wider character: they are part of the syndicalist movement that existed in Britain between 1909 and 1914, but I think they had a much more elemental character. Interestingly the Dublin lockout prefigures some of the tensions which will occur later in the revolutionary period. The unrest, directed at the state as well as the employers, illuminated the state’s determination to support the employers. Significantly for the future of both the Irish revolution and the counterrevolution, William Martin Murphy, the major employer involved in the lockout, was a nationalist, a Catholic and had various connections with Irish nationalist MPs.11


In a sense the counterrevolution begins before the revolution. An important feature of this revolutionary period is that the crisis in Ireland is opened up by the crisis in Britain and the rest of Europe. If we read the Irish newspapers at the time, there are frequent references to events occurring elsewhere, illustrating the close interaction between events in Britain and in Ireland, especially during the 1910-14 period.

The split in the British ruling class between the Conservatives and the Liberals, the people’s budget and the House of Lords crisis - all become intimately connected with Ireland. It is impossible to understand the development of the anti-home rule movement and Ulster unionism without connecting it to British Conservatives and trying to understand why the latter were so ready not only to oppose home rule, but to precipitate a major crisis in British politics. In some sense Ireland was being used as a battering ram in parliamentary skirmishes, but significantly the Irish question went to the heart of the future of the empire and the balance of forces within the British ruling class - in particular between the remnants of the old landowning class, finance and industrial capital, as well as the wider imperial interest. The fact that the British Conservatives were prepared to use the threat of Ulster unionism and to assist in the mobilisation of this counterrevolutionary force is highly significant in shaping the way events would unfold.

The Irish counterrevolution came from two sources. Firstly, from within constitutional nationalism, including figures such as William Martin Murphy and sections of the Irish Parliamentary Party. Secondly, it came from without, in the shape of the Conservatives and their Ulster unionist allies. On occasions the two currents of counterrevolution coalesce - particularly in the period of partition and the Irish Civil War in 1922-23.

The seriousness of that crisis cannot be overstated - in particular the possibility of the Tories mobilising unionists for a civil war against home rule. As the Conservative leader, Bonar Law, argued in support of Ulster unionism and ‘unconstitutional’ resistance to even the very limited form of self-government on offer before 1914:

We regard the government as a revolutionary committee which has seized power by fraud upon despotic power. In our opposition to them we shall not be guided by considerations which would influence us in ordinary political struggle ... We shall use any means to deprive them of the power they have usurped ... I can imagine no length of resistance to which Ulster will go in which I will not be ready to support them.12

That quote, deservedly well-known, indicates the degree of polarisation and threatened violence behind unionist mobilisation. Key events in 1912-14, such as the formation of the Ulster Volunteer Force, the signing of the Solemn League and Covenant, and the importation of arms, illustrate that the radicalisation, to use the modern jargon, was injected into the situation by unionists and Conservatives. A very strong theme in the biographies of many nationalists and republicans in this period was their willingness to settle for home rule: Patrick Pearse, for example, only became a militant nationalist when it became clear that a violent unionist reaction was likely to steal home rule from the nationalist grasp.13

Nationalist Ireland’s reaction was quite predictable: the formation of the Irish Volunteers as a mass movement was an attempt to put countervailing pressure to that of the unionists to defend home rule. However, unlike the Conservatives and the unionists, they were clearly not prepared for violent struggle. Although the Irish Volunteers were formed, their exact purpose remained unclear. Yes, they are formed to defend home rule, but how far they are prepared to go to do that I think is uncertain. This reflects the Irish middle classes’ reluctance to press the situation to any sort of conclusion, and in the case of Redmond to be satisfied with a degree of devolution within the United Kingdom. The limitations of this strategy were revealed by Redmond’s response to World War I: he supported the war, called for Irish men to sign up and clearly saw Ireland’s future within the empire.

The impact of the war changed the situation, in particular providing the opportunity and impetus for the 1916 rising. As we have seen, Ireland in 1910 was quite stable. In some sense the British government welcomed the war as a way of defeating opposition in Ireland and holding back trade union militancy and other oppositional movements, such as women’s suffrage. Although it has been interpreted in a number of different ways, the 1916 rising has been conventionally understood as the beginning of the revolutionary period. I do not think it is necessary to go over the familiar ground of ‘blood sacrifice’ and how far the rising was intended to be a glorious military failure - the evidence is conclusively against that. If it was a blood sacrifice in any sense, it was a sacrifice of the leaders, as opposed to the men and women who took part in it. The rising could be seen as having had a real chance of success: if, for example, more people had been involved and more material had been available, then events may well have taken on a very different and serious character.14

More significant from our point of view, however, is the impact of the rising in the immediate years that followed. The standard argument is that the rebels initially had no support and people jeered at them as they were being led away. However, they were turned into martyrs when they were executed, and within a year there had been a dramatic shift in opinion. Some recent work, examining the mood in the countryside, the impact of the war and the threat of conscription, suggests that popular feeling was already turning even before the rising. Records from the Royal Irish Constabulary indicate a much greater degree of hostility to the war than has been previously suggested in standard accounts of the period.

Connolly’s role

One of our key themes should really turn on the role of Connolly in that rising. I think this is important, because Connolly is a very significant figure and something of an icon: there are no groups on the Irish left which do not claim him as their own. In addition, Connolly bequeathed a tradition, which republicans and socialists continue to draw on.

When Connolly participated in the Easter Rising, he was aware that large numbers of people in other countries might not have understood what he was doing. Desmond Greaves seems to suggest that Connolly had arrived at a Leninist position and saw the rising as an attempt to turn the imperialist war into a civil war. Others have suggested that his position is more pro-German and that he argued for the victory of Germany as a more progressive force. Some of his contemporary critics, like Sean O’Casey, who had been a member of the Citizens Army and worked with Connolly, were very critical of the rising and suggested that he had become a nationalist and abandoned the socialist cause.15

Another familiar trope is that of the ‘premature rising’. In this respect, Kieran Allen, although sympathetic to Connolly and a member of the Socialist Workers Party in Ireland, suggests that a number of criticisms could be made of his role. For example, he argues that Connolly had not built a revolutionary party before 1916 and had made too many concessions to republicanism, leaving a very ambiguous legacy (although I think much of Connolly’s position is actually quite consistent and coherent).16

It is worth discussing the relation between the national question and the socialist revolution - a question that many international socialists wrote about in the aftermath of the rising. Connolly’s views are most clearly expressed in Labour in Irish history (1910), where he argues, firstly, that there is a clear dynamic towards socialism within militant Irish republicanism; secondly, that in all previous movements the rich betrayed the poor and therefore the only people who can carry out the revolution in Ireland are the poor, the working class, the landless labourers and the small famers. This idea is not fully developed and I think it is inaccurate to suggest, as Kieran Allen does, that Connolly had developed a version of the permanent revolution.17 Certainly Connolly does see the possibility that within Irish nationalism other trends will grow. After 1916 these currents did emerge within the republican movement and within the IRA. The difficulty, which is widely acknowledged, is how those currents are then generalised and whether a revolutionary group can be thrown up during the course of revolutionary events. The developing positions of the various social classes involved in those movements often do pose these fundamental questions of power and the direction of the movement, but increasingly it becomes a question of whether any organised grouping is in a position to take advantage of this situation.


I have referred to some major developments after 1916 - the growth of opposition to British rule, culminating in the election of a Sinn Féin majority in 1918; the growth of the IRA; British repression and the development of a mass struggle for an Irish Republic. There are two more features from that period that I would like to consider further.

First of all, does the period constitute a revolution? In Lenin’s reading it did and contemporaries in the internationalist movement did see an anti-imperialist movement developing. Increasingly after 1916, and certainly between 1918 and 1922, it was clear that the British ruling class was no longer able to govern Ireland in the old way. Its strategy from the 1890s had been to govern in a type of coalition with the Redmondites and some sections of the middle class. That coalition had been swept away in 1918 by the social and economic impact of the war, the high level of casualties and the threat of conscription.

Likewise in terms of the mobilisation of the masses, though we often focus on the military actions of the IRA, it is very clear that there was a mass mobilisation expressed in the form of elections and also boycotts, protests and strikes, including the general strike against conscription and the actions of transport workers, who refused to handle military equipment and personnel. All this shows that the masses were not willing to be ruled in the old way and there is even evidence at times of dual power occurring.18

This was reflected in the political terminology of the time. The contemporary use of the term ‘soviet’ was partly fashionable, consciously borrowed from Russia, but also reflected a real sense that Russia showed the future path. In general, I do not think that that the form that existed actually constituted soviets - these were mainly just strike committees. However, the Limerick Soviet was a general strike committee, and it did involve elements of workers’ power. For example, it gave permission for goods to be moved, for certain services to take place - it even issued promissory notes to act in place of money for the organisation of food supplies. There were similar movements in other towns and cities - even quite small towns had a series of general strikes. Many of these would have been about economic issues, but they often employed rhetoric involving the word ‘soviet’.19 The IRA had about 100,000 nominal members in the latter part of 1918, of which probably about 15,000 were active and 3,000 would have been full-time fighters. Given the size of Ireland’s population, this was quite a widespread movement.

Likewise the destruction of police barracks, the related collapse of the British administration, and the creation of an alternative system of courts and a shadow administration in the countryside carried obvious revolutionary implications. However, the model itself is not particularly revolutionary, much of it resting upon existing property relations. Ken Loach’s The wind that shakes the barley captures this quite well in an incident when a dáil court arbitrates between a moneylender and a debtor. The court finds in favour of the gombeen man because, it is argued, the republicans rely upon such people for finance and social support. If the embryonic legal and governmental system did not challenge property relations or real social power in the countryside and small towns, that was hardly more in evidence in the larger cities. So, although there was revolutionary potential, it did not last very long. It was not followed through and the result was that something of a vacuum developed. The ideas are there - of a new way of organising life, of some kind of alternative revolutionary government - but no party or grouping is able to clearly articulate that sense of possibility and develop it into forms of political and social power.

The British counter-insurgency strategy has been well documented, but I think the seriousness and manner of its implementation indicated that the ruling class knew it was faced with a revolutionary crisis. The attacks on civilians, although glossed over as ‘excesses’, were clearly authorised from the top of the British government. Lloyd George and Churchill did not just give the military free reign: they discussed the use of particular tactics. For example, assassinations were deemed to be a more effective counter-terrorism measure than ‘unofficial reprisals’, such as the burning of the centre of Cork by British forces in 1920. The fact that the British ruling class was prepared to use such extreme measures within the United Kingdom demonstrates the seriousness of the crisis it was facing in Ireland.20


I want to now to conclude by discussing the counterrevolution and the two forms which it took. The first form is the creation of what would become known as the ‘Orange state’ in Northern Ireland. The second was the counterrevolution inside the revolution. Many narratives reflect the popular imagination and the historiography by focusing on individual backsliding and corruption - for example Michael Collins being ‘seduced’ by the fleshpots of London; informers guiding the direction of the movement; and Lloyd George’s skills as a wily negotiator being able to divert the movement. All of these are significant, but what is often missing from conventional narratives (although not in those of the left) is the way that the counterrevolution, although working in close partnership with British imperialism, was generated from within Ireland itself. Peadar O’Donnell expresses this well when he suggests that the militant republicans had been defeated even before the civil war started:

We [Sinn Féin] lost out in 1921 because there was no day-to-day struggle making for differentiation, so that in those days we were forced to defend ranchers, enforce rents and be neutral in strikes ... The Free State was in existence long before the name was adopted.21

This is an important point. Given the all-class nature of republicanism and given that in large parts of Ireland existing property and legal forms were maintained, the Free State was being built long before the treaty was signed. The Sinn Féin movement that had emerged after 1916 was a broad front and we know from extensive local studies that many of its local activists had transferred wholesale from the existing constitutional nationalist party. The local leaders were often from the middle class - strong farmers, white-collar workers, publicans and so on - who had been the backbone of home rule before moving over to support the mass movement. It was clear to contemporaries that this process was happening: the more militant republicans, such as Dan Breen, were very well aware that many in the Sinn Féin movement that had emerged in the run-up to the 1918 general election were more than willing to compromise with British imperialism. This prompted Breen to kick-start a more revolutionary phase, when he and his comrades fired what are often considered to the first shots of the Black and Tan war in 1919 at the ambush at Soloheadbeg in Tipperary.

Class compromise, a willingness to come to an arrangement with the British empire, and a cautious and conservative approach were built into the movement for Irish independence. The embryo of the counterrevolution is present from the first, revealing itself in a number of ways from open class tensions and disputes over military tactics to more subtle strategic disagreements. These ranged from ‘diplomatic’ negotiation, and sending representatives to gain admission to the Versailles conference, through to trying to obtain recognition from the USA. In contrast, the more militant republicans were arguing for armed struggle, land seizures and, in some localities, the creation of a new form of state and different social relations.

The counterrevolution became more apparent when the treaty was signed and it became clear that the forms of the new state were not going to be as radical as many had hoped. The discussions around the treaty and the split in the movement are not always easy to understand. There is a class element in them, but it is not as clear-cut, with the lower social classes on the anti-treaty side and the middle class leading the pro-treaty forces. There were other regional cleavages and ideological dividing lines as well.22 Many of the anti-treaty republicans, although willing to have some dialogue with the left (something that would be a feature of later republican movements), limited their demands purely to the idea of ‘the republic’ rather than a genuine revolution in the interests of the working class and the small farmers.

One of the key problems facing the anti-treaty forces was their vanguardism - a sense that the mass of the population lacked a developed political subjectivity and that only the IRA truly embodied the will of the nation. Consequently very few republicans attempted to build a political movement beyond the IRA in this period. I am not arguing that this is necessarily an inevitable feature of Irish republicanism, but certainly its definition of the struggle has tended historically to be a narrow one.23 Whilst class dynamics were present in the 1922-23 civil war, much of the conflict was around purely symbolic issues, which failed to attract wide support and remobilise the mass revolutionary movement against the counterrevolution. The demand for the republic was never made very clear.

It is true that many people demanded a workers’ republic and argued for the transformation of social and property relations, especially on the land. However, for many the republic became not just a means to emancipation, but the final goal in itself. What has surprised many commentators since 1922 is that in the debates on the treaty partition it played a distinctly minor role - it is not really mentioned in the Dáil debates at all. The focus in the discussions was on the relationship to the empire and on the oath of allegiance. Indeed, from this you can argue that the beginnings of a type of 26-county nationalism can already be seen. Essentially the north has already been written off and that for both tendencies within the national movement the real struggle for the future was going to take place in the south.

The Irish counterrevolutionary period can be seen as both a failure of the left and a failure for republicanism arising from a range of subjective and objective factors. Many on the left have argued that the leaders of the trade unions and the labour movement abdicated their role - the Irish union movement is a very easy target to attack in this context. But should we not also look at the role of left republicans and consider whether, by rallying around the idea of the republic instead of the workers’ republic, they failed to give the demand for the republic a definite social and political content? The reasons why the IRA was reining in struggles - arresting people on rent strike, for instance - and why even left republicans were willing to submit to such counterrevolutionary actions in the name of unity are also important areas for discussion. It is also worth considering Connolly’s failure to develop a party and how far his syndicalist tendencies were a factor in this failure.

In terms of objective factors, given the nature of Irish society and the relative weakness of the proletariat, could the outcome really have been any different? What lessons can be learned regarding political struggle in countries without a strong proletariat? These are all questions that I hope we can debate and which will be increasingly important in the historiography of the Irish revolution. Given the nature of movements which are emerging in the ex-colonial world, they are questions which still continue to have a great deal of relevance for us today.


1. See, for example, J Augusteijn (ed) The Irish Revolution 1913-1923 Basingstoke 2002.

2. For an account of popular response to the 1916 commemorations see K Bean, ‘New roads to the Rising: the Irish politics of commemoration since 1994’ in R Grayson and F McGarry Remembering 1916 Manchester 2016.

3. T Garvin Nationalist revolutionaries in Ireland 1858-1928 Dublin 2005.

4. F Kelly, ‘John Bruton says 1916 was “recipe for endless conflict”’ Irish Times March 29 2016.

5. For an example of a growing body of such work see the bibliographies listed online on The Irish Story website:

6. For an example of this debates about this type of narrative see B Roche, ‘Killing of Protestants in 1922 truce not sectarian, study argues’ Irish Times January 23 2014.

7. P Hart The IRA at war 1916-1923 Oxford 2003.

8. For one good recent survey see K Allen 1916: Ireland’s revolutionary tradition London 2016.

9. See C Desmond Greaves The life and times of James Connolly London 1961.

10. L Trotsky ‘On the events in Dublin’ Nashe Slovo July 4 1916.

11. See P Yeates Lockout: Dublin 1913 Dublin 2001.


13. R O’Donnell Patrick Pearse Dublin 2016.

14. F McGarry The Rising: Ireland 1916 Oxford 2010.

15.For a good discussion on the differences between the positions of Connolly and Lenin on the war see L O’Ruairc, ‘Red nationalism of the blood or cultural gesture’ The Irish Revolution December 2015: http://the

16. K Allen op cit p64.

17. Ibid p70.

18. J Augusteijn From public defiance to guerrilla warfare Dublin 1996.

19. K Allen op cit.

20. C Townshend The republic: the fight for Irish independence London 2013.

21. K Allen op cit p43.

22. J Regan The Irish counterrevolution 1912-1936 Dublin 2000.

23. T McKearney The Provisional IRA: from insurrection to parliament London 2011.