Very interesting reading on Internet Commentator about De Valera and his paying his respects on the death of Hitler. Now, ever since my leaving cert I’ve been a Collins girl, not a Dev follower. He just such a “cute hoor”, and of course he is responsible for Fianna Fail.
But the one point I would recommend any Irish person pay attention to: the fact that so many Irish men joined the British army. These people are often forgotten, or deliberately ignored and written out of history. See Foreign Dispatchers and this BBC articlefor more on this issue.
Now despite my dislike of Dev I actually think that neutrality was a valid choice at the time, given what they knew. Obviously once reports of the Concentration camps began to emerge then Dev should have reconsidered. Course then, no doubt we would have been thrown into another conflict with the hardline RA-heads. After all it is only very recently that we have begun to allow other issues apart from the Civil War influence voting patterns.
Judgement calls are great with hindsight, but slightly harder at the time, with a myriad of opinions on what is going on.
As for out current stance on neutrality, I say get rid of it. Either we are part of Europe or we aren’t. Not that I am advocating going to war or anything, and I do have issues with the whole notion of standing armies. But taking a realistic view of the world, it is kinda obvious that until everyone is happy and smiley that pacifism is never going to work