The Drishanebeg Ambush Centenary Commemoration Address
Aubane Historical Society
CENTENARY OF THE DRISHANEBEG AMBUSH
11th February 2021
I want to thank the Committee for organising this event and inviting me to speak. A good indication of their efficient and professional approach was to ask me to speak here some months ago. That is much appreciated. I also want to thank the Committee for doing this and making such an event as we have today.
I think many of you will agree that this type of event was unimaginable a few years ago. Irish history writing by our academics and commentators went through a very bad period for a number of years.
There was an attempt to give us a bad conscience about the war of independent and these types of commemorations were seen as in bad taste. The only disagreement I have with the commemorations is that they should be called celebrations but never mind.
There was an attempt to create a narrative of the War of the Independence that was designed to give us bad conscience about the whole thing because it was alleged to be a sectarian episode; that it was war against Protestants. This was incredible to anyone who had any knowledge at all of the people who fought that war or the events of the war. It was an attempt to try to prove that our state was deformed at birth, so to speak.
We have just had numerous events to commemorate the Rising and rightly so. But 1916 without the 1918 Election result would be almost a non-event and this election is not listed as one of the events that’s highlighted for commemoration during ‘the decade of Commemorations.’ In fact it is never commemorated. It was the endorsement of 1916 by the electorate in 1918 that made 1916 the event it was. Otherwise it would have been a failure like ’98, 1803, ’48, and ’67. It therefore deserves a fairly prominent commemoration. Up to a few months ago there were 974 books listed in the NLI on 1916 and well over a 1000 by now but not a single one on the 1918 Election! I wonder will there be at least one book published on it before 2018?
It is impossible to understand subsequent events such as the War of the Independence and the so-called Civil War without appreciating the 1918 Election. That was the seminal event of the period. It endorsed the Rebellion and was the basis for Interdependence.
All the critics of 1916 who go on about the lack of a mandate should be lauding 1918 but they are strangely muted about it. The results of any General Election can hardly be ignored but that is exactly what happened in 1918 and the more one thinks about it the more extraordinary it becomes. [read more …] “The 1918 Election – an Ignored Centenary?”
Address by Jack Lane, Aubane Historical Society, 30th November 2014
I want to thank the Committee for giving me an opportunity to address this commemoration here today. The ambush that occurred here was a pivotal event in the War of Independence and it is a privilege to be involved in a commemoration of such an event. It changed the character of that war because after it all involved realised that this was a real war and the Crown Forces realised for the first time that they were up against a competent army because they were thoroughly defeated. It concentrated their minds wonderfully. Nothing like it had happened before in that war.