This year 2013, marks the 100 Anniversary of the foundation of the Irish volunteers.
It also marks the 90th Anniversary of the end of the Irish Civil War.
2014 sees the 100th Anniversary of the outbreak of The Great War in which an estimated 120,000 to 210,000 Irishmen fought. Around 30,000 to 60,000 paid the ultimate price. Twenty-three Irishmen were awarded the Victoria Cross.
'The virtual disappearance of the World War from the version of Irish History taught to the first generations of the new independent Irish State had the result that few were aware of the extent of Irish participation in the actual fighting.
(Department of the Taoiseach - Irish Soldiers of the First World War.)
'If any question why we died tell them, that our father lied.'
Had a good 'Twice a Hero' book launch/signing in Tyldesley, courtesy of Wigan Council 'Words' Week. It was a bit slow but some good networking and a very good rehearsal for my next book launch/signing in the Aidan Heavey Library in Athlone, Co. Westmeath, Ireland on the 25th April 2013. Hope some of my Irish family can come along for support. It will also be the anniversary of the murder, in Irishtown, Athlone of our uncle Brig. Gen. George Adamson DCM on the 25th April 1922 the day of his 25th Birthday. With six and a half years at war and no normal life to speak of I pray that he is resting in peace, God love him he deserves it. He certainly doesn't deserve to be in an unmarked grave in a disused and overgrown cemetery in Mount Temple, Moate, Co. Westmeath. He deserves to be a hero of the Irish War of Independence and not a victim of it.
Go to my Facebook Page and see the short clip of my uncle Brig. Gen. George Adamson taking part in the ceremony on the castle battlements. He is second from the left looking up at the flag pole with the Irish flag around his body. Wait for the adverts to end and the clip to start. The castle was renamed Adamson Castle in his honour after his murder in 1922
The publication of 'Twice a Hero' which covers the Irish War of Independence has attracted some comments on the difference between Freedom/Guerrilla Fighters and Terrorists in reference to the Irish Volunteers formed on the 25th March 1913 'To secure and maintain the rights and liberties common to all of the people of Ireland.' later renamed and referred to as The Irish Republican Army from August 1919.
A Freedom/Guerrilla Fighter generally operates as part of a small band or group as an irregular military unit aimed at at attacking oppressive occupation forces both military and paramilitary and destroying its infrastructure, making every effort to avoid collateral injury or death to their fellow citizens and damage to their property. Whereas Terrorists intentionally and indiscriminately target and attempt to kill or maim innocent men women and children and destroy their property. Following my research into 'Twice a Hero' it is my contention that the (Old) IRA 1919-1922 operated as Freedom/Guerrilla Fighters during the Irish War of Independence.
On the 25th April 1922, the day of his 25th birthday, Brig. Gen George Adamson was murdered in Athlone in the Irish Midlands. I had hoped to display this on Facebook and Twitter but my plans were spoiled by my internet and phone supplier Talk Talk who, due to some unexplained reason, left me without any comms for eleven days. During that timed this communication company failed to communicate with me leaving me 'high and dry.' So, if anyone can recommend a good replacement company please let me know.
However, this setback did not stop me commemorating the brutal death of my uncle George as I had arranged a book signing of 'Twice a Hero' on the day in the Aidan Heavey Library in Athlone, courtesy of its Senior Executive Librarian Gearoid O' Brien. I got great backing from Tadhg Carey, Editor of The Westmeath Independent newspaper who ran an article written by John Rattigan who's father Patsy was a closed friend of my uncle George. Prior to that I was interviewed by Ed Coyle on Athlone Community Radio 88.4 FM with the end result that the day of the signing got off to a cracking start which then went on to be a great success. Many thanks to the people of Athlone who dropped in to have a chat about the period 1919-1922 and in most cases buying a book which I had the pleasure of signing.
Further to this, and having written to The National Graves Association in Dublin, a voluntary group, who look after the last resting place of the heroes of the Irish fight for freedom, have taken on the task of trying to get something done with the discraceful state of the Mount Temple Graveyard in Moate, Co. Westmeath where Brig. Gen. George Adamson, Comdt. Jim Tormey and his brother Volunteer James lie buried in unmarked graves. I will follow the Associations progress on my blog.
There is great controversy in Ireland and England among us Irish on the wearing of the Poppy on Remembrance Sunday to honour the Irish dead of The Great War and there is a lot to be said for both sides of this argument. So, why don't we produce an Irish Poppy to commemorate the the Irish dead of both wars to include the quarter of a million Irishmen who fought in the Second World War and helped to save us from the curse of Nazism and should therefore we honourd for their sacrifice. Again, why not wear an Irish Poppy to honour the men of the Irish Defense force who have given their lives, under the flag of the United Nations, in the protection and defense of small nations throughout the world?
I have just written to The National Graves Association in Dublin, enclosing a copy of Twice a Hero, to advise them on the disgraceful state of the closed cemetery in Mount Temple, Moate, Co. Westmeath, Eire. Anything they can do to find and tidy up the graves of Brig.Gen. George Adamson, Comdt. James (Jim) Tormey and Volunteer Joseph Tormey would be a big step in honouring these brave men, as they deserve
to be part of history and not victims of it. Should my book be successful, it would be my intention to donate monies to restoration of the cemetery and mark the graves of these great men.
A gentleman calling himself A Proud Westmeath Man wrote a Review on my book page in Amazon UK. I was most interested in his comments and would like to correspond or meet up with him when I am next home. I would be grateful if he would make contact with me through my website.