A book was touted and discussed on the Today Programme upon which for the life of me I cannot make my mind up.
The stories are about the five-odd thousand Irish servicemen who left their posts to join with British Army, Navy and Airforce operations during World War 2. It seems as though they were all treated as deserters when the War ended and were court-martialled, dead or alive, and when released, they continued to be ostracised from Irish life, as were their children.
Many of the children were placed in ‘Industrial Schools’ which were of course run by? Who else but the Catholic Church, and we all know what happened to a whole bunch of kids who were ‘under the protection of the church’.
But my query is simply this, was the ultra-strong reaction of the Irish State towards the returning deserters because they were deserters, or was it because they had left to join the Forces who were fighting against Nazi Germany, the deep and true friends of many in the upper echelons of the Irish Government?