20th Century to World War II

O - Z

O'Donoghue, David.

1. "The Nazis in Irish Universities." History Ireland (Sep.-Oct. 2007): 12-13.

The German Academic Exchange Service sent a number of students to study at Irish colleges. One such student, Hans Hartmann, did not leave Dublin until 1939 and became head of the Irish service of German Radio in 1941. Nona Keital, daughter of Wehrmacht Commander-in-Chief Wilhhelm Keital, studied for a year in the mid-1930s at Trinity College in Dublin. Beyond the students, the author names a few German Nazis teaching in Ireland in the 1930s.

2. "State Within a State: The Nazis in Neutral Ireland." History Ireland 14, no. 6 (Nov.-Dec. 2006): 35-39.

The author discusses Germans in pre-war Ireland, who served both as Irish state employees and Nazi party members.

O'Halpin, Eunan.

1. "Army, Politics and Society in Independent Ireland, 1923-1945." Historical Studies (Irish Conference of Historians) 8 (1993): 158-174.

2. "British Intelligence in Ireland, 1914-1921." In The Missing Dimension: Governments and Intelligence Communities in the Twentieth Century, eds. Christopher Andrew and David Dilks, 55-77. London: Macmillan, 1984.

3. Defending Ireland: The Irish State and Its Enemies Since 1922. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999.

4. "External Intelligence and the Civil War." Irish Sword 20 (1997): 267-278.

5. "Intelligence and Anglo-Irish Relations, 1922-1973." In  Intelligence, Statecraft and International Power: Papers Read before the 27th Irish Conference of Historians Held at Trinity College, Dublin, 19-21 May 2005, eds. Eunan O'Halpin, Robert Armstrong, and Jane Ohlmeyer, 132-150. Dublin: Irish Academic Press, 2006.

6. "Intelligence and Security in Ireland, 1922-45." Intelligence and National Security 5, no. 1 (Jan. 1990): 50-83.

From 1923 to 1938, Ireland's "security priorities were overwhelmingly domestic." As war approached, however, "a new, elaborate and pervasive security system" was required. Security and intelligence cooperation with Britain "was surprisingly extensive at administrative levels even before the war."

7. "Long Fellow, Long Story: MI5 and de Valera." Irish Studies in International Affairs 14 (2003): 185-203.

8. "Problematic Killing during the War of Independence and Its Aftermath: Civilian Spies and Informers." In Death and Dying in Ireland, Britain and Europe: Hostorical Perspectives, eds. James Kelly and Mary Ann Lyons, 317-348. Sallins: Irish Academic Press, 2013.

9. "The Secret Service Vote and Ireland, 1868-1922." Irish Historical Studies 23 (1983), 348-353.

10. "'Weird Prophecies': British Intelligence and Anglo-Irish Relations, 1932-3." In Irish Foreign Policy, 1919-66: From Independence to Internationalism, eds. Michael Kennedy and Joseph Morrison Skelly, 61-73. Dublin: Four Courts, 2000.

Plauder, Oliver. "The Establishment of Irish Intelligence: Irish Security Institutions and the IRA between the Wars." In Public Power in Europe: Studies in Historical Transformations, eds. James S. Amelang and Siegfried Beer, 207-221. Pisa: Edizioni Plus, Pisa University Press, 2006.

"This article examines the establishment of the civilian secret service, the Garda Special Branch, as well as the formation of its military counterpart, the G2.... [B]oth services had the task of consolidating the interior structure of the Free State and building up international relations." However, "these institutions had to keep up their efforts in counter-intelligence and counter-espionage. The main task was to protect the state from subversive moves by republican militants who tried to build up their own international networks and to import weapons for another round with the authorities."

Sharkey, Sean. "My Role as an Intelligence Officer with the Third Tipperary Brigade (1919-1921)." Tipperary Historical Journal (1998): 95-104.

Townshend, Charles. "The Irish Republican Army and Development of Guerrilla Warfare, 1916-1921." English Historical Review 94 (Apr. 1979): 318-345.

Turi, John. England's Greatest Spy: Eamon De Valera.  London: Stacey International, 2009.

As expected, this work caused considerable controversy. For prepublication feature articles on the book, see Spain, Irish Independent, 26 Oct. 2009, and Dwyer, Irish Examiner, 31 Oct. 2009.

De Valera biographer Tim Pat Coogan, Irish Independent, 28 Nov. 2009, says that he "put down the book with a feeling of fervent hope that people like Turi are not currently employed in supplying intelligence reports to the White House.... This selective use of quotations [from the reviewer's biography of de Valera], an occupational hazard for historians, contributes not to truth but to bad history.... I have never found a scrap of evidence to support the contention that Eamon de Valera was a British spy and Turi has not produced any either."

McCarthy, Sunday Independent, 15 Nov. 2009, notes that "De Valera was never short of enemies over the course of his long life.... And now an American writer suggests he was really a British spy.... The absurdity of this thesis should not, however, obscure de Valera's very profound Anglophile streak.... Dev wasn't turned by the British spooks, but he was charmed by her parliamentary genius and by what Burke once called her liberal descent."

Peake, Studies 54.4 (Dec. 2010), notes that the documents that might prove the author's case "remain locked in the British archives. Thus the title claims a bit more than the book proves -- cause and effect remain obscure when espionage is considered." For a review of what Irish historians have said about Turi's thesis, see Shortall, Sunday Times, 1 Nov. 2009.

Walsh, Maurice. G2: In Defence of Ireland: Irish Military Intelligence 1918–45. Cork: Collins, 2010.

From publisher: "Michael Collins was the first Director of Intelligence and during the War of Independence, the IRA succeeded ... in the intelligence war against the British army and the Royal Irish Constabulary." During World War II, "G2 was involved in counter-espionage, propaganda and maintaining Ireland's pro-Allied neutrality.... The work of cryptologist Dr. Richard Hayes was essential to the war effort as it ensured German codes were decrypted for the Director of G2 and then passed to London."

Augusteijn, History Ireland 18.3 (May-Jun. 2010), is not impressed with this book. The author "does not really engage with modern scholarship" in discussing the period of the Anglo-Irish War" and "[t]he chapter on the interbellum also lacks substance." The reviewer sees Walsh as much too partisan in his conclusions. In addition, "the book would have benefited from a substantial amount of editing. It lacks coherence," and "[i]t is inconsistently footnoted."

For the reviewer in Books Ireland (Summer 2010), that the author comes to his subject from the inside may have been a hindrance given "Army loyalties, mess anecdotes and a nervous overreliance on established historians." Walsh's "account is badly structured, repetitious and clumsily written." Nevertheless, "[w]hat becomes clear is that some leading officers had little or no proper military education and allowed anglophobia to influence their actions."

Return to Ireland Table of Contents