Liam Lynch and the battle for Limerick, July 1922

Éireann_Ascendant

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Article on Liam Lynch and how his decisions helped determine the struggle for Limerick and then Cork during the Civil War.

The Self-Deceit of Honour: Liam Lynch and the Civil War, 1922 (Part IV)


The ten-day battle for Limerick reached its weary climax before midnight on the 19th July 1922 when the anti-Treaty IRA decided that enough was enough. Following the orders of their Chief of Staff, Liam Lynch, the men left the city in a line of motorcars.

At the start of the conflict, both sides had recognised the importance of Limerick. “The whole Civil War really turned on Limerick,” said Michael Brennan, the Free State general for the city. “The Shannon was the barricade and whoever held Limerick held the south and the west.”

Some in the IRA were impatient to begin. "There is no use in fooling with this question any longer," wrote one. "Send on the men and let us get on with the war.”

Instead, Lynch agreed to a truce with the Pro-Treatyites on the 4th July 1922, hoping to avoid unnecessary bloodshed. He and Brennan subsequently met for talks, with Brennan judging his IRA counterpart as “an innocent sort of man, very attractive, of unquestionable courage, the kind of man who gets others to follow him.”

Despite such efforts, the truce broke down and fighting began on the 11th July. Men from both sides scrambled to secure vantage points about the city, from factories, business establishments private dwellings, public institutions or even church belfries. When the Pro-Treatyites began bombarding the IRA positions with artillery, Lynch gave the order to withdraw.



(The affect results of artillery bombing on Strand Barracks, Limerick, by the Free State)​

Opinions on Lynch's decision to delay fighting in the hopes of finding a peaceful resolution were mixed among his subordinates. Some were relatively sympathetic, with one concluding that “the honesty of purpose of our leaders and their belief in the honesty of purpose of the enemy” was what lost Limerick.

Others were less merciful in their assessments. One was “thoroughly disgusted” by the inactivity forced on the men, and that “I could see our incompetence and limitations for this type of fighting for we had no military men between the whole lot of us.”

Another was even harsher: “Liam Lynch and his bloody Truce ruined us in the Civil War.”



(National Army soldiers behind a barricade)​
 


Dublin 4

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Reads like something out of Fawlty Towers- the British were up in Belfast not Limerick :roll:

What did he do all that for?

Dumb...
 

PAGE61

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I dont think its a simple as that.. a quick glance at a history book would do you no harm
 

making waves

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The real battle fought at this time was the one between the workers soviets and both wings of Irish nationalism.

Once the anti-Treaty IRA followed Lynch's orders to suppress the workers soviets the anti-Treaty side lost any hope of winning by virtue of cutting away the only potential base of support that could defeat the Free State forces, the working class.
 

Talk Back

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Local Irish Republican Army Battalions took over enemy Barracks in their own areas when the British evacuated them. Limerick was strongly in favour of the Irish Republic, so when the renegade Free State army (deserts and betrays an organization, country, or set of principles) sneaked into Limerick from Galway and Clare along a railway line, and took over Limerick Castle and the Strand Barracks - it was tantamount to a declaration of war against the Irish Republic.

 

Supra

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Local Irish Republican Army Battalions took over enemy Barracks in their own areas when the British evacuated them. Limerick was strongly in favour of the Irish Republic, so when the renegade Free State army (deserts and betrays an organization, country, or set of principles) sneaked into Limerick from Galway and Clare along a railway line, and took over Limerick Castle and the Strand Barracks - it was tantamount to a declaration of war against the Irish Republic.
It's hard to fight without weapons regardless of vantage points
 

Talk Back

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It's hard to fight without weapons regardless of vantage points
The Mid-Limerick Brigade had weapons. Local Irish Republican Army Battalions took over enemy Barracks in their own areas when the British evacuated them - Divisions did not enter into the local Division's area of operation.

Mulcahy lied on Jan 10th when he said the "army" would remain the army of the Irish Republic - within days he set up a rival army to the army of the Irish Republic, Óglaigh na hÉireann - namely the Free State army, which made its public appearance on Jan 31st.
 

making waves

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Local Irish Republican Army Battalions took over enemy Barracks in their own areas when the British evacuated them. Limerick was strongly in favour of the Irish Republic, so when the renegade Free State army (deserts and betrays an organization, country, or set of principles) sneaked into Limerick from Galway and Clare along a railway line, and took over Limerick Castle and the Strand Barracks - it was tantamount to a declaration of war against the Irish Republic.
The first act of the Free State Forces in Limerick was in April to cordon off and place an armed military guard on the Cleeve's Condensed Milk factory in order to prevent the 600 workers occupying it during the Munster Soviets.
 

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Article here on Lynch's so call 'amusements order' banning public entertainment during a 'period of national mourning' in March 1923.

The IRA's War on Public Entertainment – The Amusements Order of 1923. | The Irish Story
A PETA insurgency?

Around the country, the Amusements Order had some strange results. In Ballina, County Mayo, the National Army reported that the ‘Irregulars’ had demolished the enclosure at a coursing meeting and released the hares to prevent the coursing from going ahead.
 

McTell

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/


The ten-day battle for Limerick reached its weary climax before midnight on the 19th July 1922 when the anti-Treaty IRA decided that enough was enough. Following the orders of their Chief of Staff, Liam Lynch, the men left the city in a line of motorcars.///

Slow learners, ehhh?

Why would anyone want their country run by such eejits....
 

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Slow learners, ehhh?

Why would anyone want their country run by such eejits....
In Lynch's case, he never learned. Up to the end, when many of his command were desperate for some kind of escape plan, he stuck to his guns - so to speak - and refused to even consider any sort of compromise.

Gutsy or delusional? Or just naive? As his aide, Todd Andrews, put it: "He had no sophistication in any field; he was a simple, uncomplicated man, believing in God, the Blessed Virgin and the Saints and, loving Ireland as he did, he had dedicated his life to her under God."
 

McTell

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In Lynch's case, he never learned. Up to the end, when many of his command were desperate for some kind of escape plan, he stuck to his guns - so to speak - and refused to even consider any sort of compromise.

Gutsy or delusional? Or just naive? As his aide, Todd Andrews, put it: "He had no sophistication in any field; he was a simple, uncomplicated man, believing in God, the Blessed Virgin and the Saints and, loving Ireland as he did, he had dedicated his life to her under God."

He meant well, and was a brave man, but a lot of these guys didn't think things thru.
 

Mushroom

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What was it with all the revolutionary time leaders being gay?

First Casement, then Pearce, Collins was bi and now this General.
It may be that the meaning and usage of the word has changed in the ensuing 90 plus years.

One OED definition of attractive is "Having qualities or features which arouse interest" and offers the synonym "fascinating" - so perhaps Brennan's comment meant only that he found him very interesting.
 


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