The London Jew who gave his life for Ireland during Easter 1916 man, and was also instrumental in advising Collins on financial and real estate problems.
During the Easter Rebellion in Ireland in 1916, did Great Britain’s response help the long term cause for independence?
We Irish are a strange lot. During the Rising the British responded in the only way they could. At closure, when the prisoners were being marched away, crowds of people booed them – many spectators had husbands fighting on the various fronts. From memory I believe 96 death sentences were handed out at the Courts Martial where the insurgents were tried. Under the advice of General Maxwell the majority of these were commuted to life imprisonment but against his advice and the pleadings of other prominenti Asquith insisted upon the leaders being executed by firing squad except for Countess Markievicz (as she was female) and Eamon de Valera (because he was a US citizen).
This generated great sympathy for the cause amongst the working classes as they felt, despite armed uprising in time of war, they felt a good boot up the arse and a prison sentence would have been enough.
The story doesn’t end there but that is the question answered in the affirmative.