+10.It's worth noting that upon the death of President Roosevelt a few weeks earlier, resolutions of condolence had been passed by the Dáil and Seanad and the Dáil was adjourned as a mark of respect
Since Ireland had diplomatic relations with Germany, diplomatic protocol required there be some expression of sympathy upon the death of their Head of State.
In addition, Ambassador Hempel was personally highly respected in Dublin and there was no desire to deliver a diplomatic insult to him.
De Valera's overly pedantic adherence to diplomatic protocol and respect for Hempel prevented him from doing something smarter, like just sending a card, but attempting to twist that into him being pro-Nazi (or, euphemistically, 'pro-German') shows either ignorance or malice.
I'm certainly not a fan of de Valera; his personal fortune was acquired corruptly and his economic policies were disastrous, but he wasn't pro-Nazi.
As a side note, at the time of George V's death in 1936 he had the title 'King of Ireland', so in theory Ireland's loss was a great as England's and no message was required. The U.S. government sent messages of condolence for his death to the Irish government which were responded to by the Governor-General.
But, when George VI died in 1952 the Irish government did send a message of condolence to the British government, which Churchill responded warmly to.
(BTW Cruimh - Hitler never had much support from the German aristocracy and at best they saw the Nazis much the same way the current U.S. Republican leadership see the Tea-Partiers. The aristocracy weren't democrats, they just wanted the old-fashioned kind of right-wing dictatorship.)
the slight flaw in that plan though was that hitler was barking mad and an extremely poor military leader who fancied himself as a strategic genius ( much like saddam hussein) . Hitler should have attacked earlier but flew into an inconsolable rage when the serbs rose upand overthrew the serb monarch whod signed a pro nazi pact. He ordered his troops be diverted into a lengthy punishment exercise in the balkans to teach them a lesson , losing vital summer months from his Barbarossa plan .Hitler beat Stalin to the punch, by about two weeks.
Stalin was warned, all right, but he didn't believe the warnings, because he believed he could deduce Hitler's true intentions from the preparations that the German Army made to fight a winter war.
Its a British paper and not required to be in any manner sympathetic towards Ireland . Just because our media is robustly and sometimes hysterically pro british theres no requirement for the British media to reciprocate to any degree . World doesnt work like that .DeValera pro German? Many historians have pointed out the number of ways Ireland helped the allies during the war. If DeValera had taken an Anglo Saxon view of the War 'My enemies enemy is my friend' then he would have sided with Germany. He didn't. Anyway the Guardian has become a disgracful anti Catholic rag these days.
Ireland was given aid under the Marshall Plan:I don't think de Valera was pro-Nazi - but his obsession with not appearing to be in any way pro-British led him to make the spectacular political misjudgment of offering condolences to the German Ambassador on Hitler's death. And it was extremely costly to Ireland, causing outrage particularly in US government circles, and resulting indirectly in the refusal of our request for aid under the Marshall Plan. It was also held against us by the French and Belgians in our initial application to join the EEC.
| Book Review | The American Historical Review, . | The History CooperativeBernadette Whelan. Ireland and the Marshall Plan, 194757. Portland, Oreg.: Four Courts Press. 2000. Pp. 426. $55.00.
Since the mid-1980s, numerous studies have appeared on Ireland's postwar economic recovery and on American aid programs, but none, aside from Raymond Raymond's article in Anglo-Irish Studies ("The Marshall Plan and Ireland, 194752" ), has dealt with Ireland and the Marshall Plan. Bernadette Whelan fills that void by showing the extent to which Irish life and politics were influenced by American Cold War designs. While Marshall aid appeared to have limited immediate impact, it served ultimately to energize and internationalize Ireland's conservative economy. 1
From the outset, motivations behind offering and accepting aid were complex. Whelan underscores Alan Milward's thesis that Marshall money was superfluous since Western European economies were already recovering by 1945. Furthermore, Ireland's agriculture, its mainstay, was in fairly good condition, and its devout Catholic populace seemed impervious to communist influence. Still, there were serious balance of payments difficulties and an increasing reliance on dollar areas for imports. Joining the European Recovery Program (ERP) would alleviate these stresses, but there were concerns about damaging political and social compromises. Nonetheless, Whelan concludes that Ireland's acceptance did not mark a break with existing trends on foreign policy expansion, continued domination of agriculture, industrial underdevelopment, and reliance on British markets.
De Valera was indeed in many ways pro-German. Even if he wasn't, I very much approve of the general line that you are complaining about in the editorial policy of the Guardian strongly critical of the Roman Catholic Church.Anyone who has read the Guardian or visited its website website will know that it is indulging in an astonishing amount of anti Catholic rhetoric in connection with the state visit of Pope Benedict. I have been genuinely shocked at the degree of intolerance and group-think amongst much of the British liberal intelligentsia, egged on by the Guardian in particular.
Anyway, the Pope's visit has so far gone off much more successfully than predicted by the Guardian, and this perhaps explains a particularly spiteful and snarly editorial in today's paper. Amongst the invective, it drops this outrageous clanger:
You might expect to see this sort of gross distortion of Ireland's role in WW2 amongst the more right-wing elements of the Telegraph or the Mail, but the Guardian generally has a decent understanding of recent Irish history for a British publication. Can this mistake by dismissed as the result of some over-excited rhetoric, or does it represent what the British genuinely believe about De Valera in WW2?
Pope's visit: A turbulent priest | Comment is free | The Guardian
How was de Valera pro-German?De Valera was indeed in many ways pro-German. Even if he wasn't, I very much approve of the general line that you are complaining about in the editorial policy of the Guardian strongly critical of the Roman Catholic Church.
It's a great pity (and imo a scandal) there are no Irish national newspapers with the guts (or possibly the inclination) to pursue a similar policy.
On the question of the pro-German stance of De Valera, as other posters have pointed out, this does not imply he was pro-Nazi. He did, however, see the British as an evil foreign power and a bad influence on Ireland. He saw Germany rather differently.How was de Valera pro-German?
The consistently aggressive stance of the Guardian long ago went beyond reasoned critique and consists largely in confirming, not challenging, the prejudices of its readership. I'm not surprised you approve.