Eire: The “Green Legion” and Why the Catholic Dalliance with Fascism Has to Stop! (8.5.2023)

Eoin O’Duffy (1890-1944) – Irish Republican and Fascist!

When I was young (during the 1970s) I was surprised to be told that Eire had been ‘neutral’ during WWII. Why was this? My Irish grandmother – Gladys Kilmurray – had migrate from the Republic of Ireland (Eire) just after outbreak of WWII -t ‘volunteer’ as a Nurse in the fight against fascism. As a young woman she had rejected the Catholic Church’s support of the ‘fascist’ cause and had gone to England to join the fight! She told me that although Eire was technically ‘neutral’ (a gimmick to avoid any economic or military retaliation from the UK) – all the Catholics priests (God’s Stormtroopers – as Dave Allen once described them) – were continuously telling young Irishmen to ‘volunteer’ for Hitler’s or Mussolini’s fascist battalions and join the fight against the UK and the USSR (the US would join later)! My Irish grandmother would eventually marry my grandfather (Alfred Wyles) who was a serving (frontline) soldier in the British Army!

The above photograph is of a young Eoin O’Duffy! In January 1921 (aged 31 years old) he became the Irish Republican Army (IRA) Chief of Staff. It is believed that this promotion made him the youngest person to hold the military rank of ‘General’ in Europe! This record would be broken when the fascist ‘Francisco Franco’ was promoted to ‘General’ by order of the Pope (and Mussolini). The IRA, particularly in its 1916 form, was ‘Socialist’ and quite often aligned its ideology with that of Marx, Engels and Lenin. Indeed, the early IRA is often considered the earliest ‘Red Army’ as it marched under a Red Banner and the emblems of a ‘Plough’ (signifying farmers and peasants) and a ‘Hammer’ (representing industrial workers).

When Eire gained most of its independence from Britain in 1921, the Catholic Church did its utmost to destroy the ‘Socialist’ movement and divert its people toward the fascist ideology. This change in perspective can be seen through the example of Eoin O’Duffy and his descent into reaction. Eoin O’Duffy would eventually became the popular leader of the far-right ‘People’s National Party’ – which was closely aligned with Nazi Germany and its aims. Eoin O’Duffy even sent Adolf Hitler an offer that he would raise a ‘Green Legion’ of Irishmen to fight on the Russian Front. O’Duffy was no stranger to battle as he had previously led a 700 strong (pro-Franco) Irish Brigade in during Spanish Civil War (1936-1939). In the 1940s – O’Duffy spent time in Nazi Germany discussing a free Ireland – and how he could assist the Axis in its war against Britain.