Those killed were named in captured British files as informers before the Truce signed the previous July. Its fighting caused more than 2000 deaths, as well as extensive destruction and damage to infrastructure and private property. In mid-1920, republicans won control of most county councils, and British authority collapsed in most of the south and west, forcing the British government to introduce emergency powers. The years between the Easter Rising of 1916 and the beginning of the War of Independence in 1919 were not bloodless. Much of the nationalist campaign involved popular mobilisation and the creation of a republican "state within a state" in opposition to British rule. Tensions that led to the Irish Civil War were evident by then and evacuation was suspended. That day, two RIC officers were killed in the Soloheadbeg ambush by IRA volunteers acting on their own initiative. The official division of the country of Ireland into two separate regions – Northern and Southern Ireland – took place in May 1921, through an act passed by the British Parliament. After Sinn Fein’s victory in the December 1918 Westminster elections, the Irish Republican Army (IRA) started a guerilla war where local battalions of … This further alienated Irish nationalists and produced mass demonstrations during the Conscription Crisis of 1918. Similarly, in May 1920, Dublin dockers refused to handle any war matériel and were soon joined by the Irish Transport and General Workers' Union, who banned railway drivers from carrying members of the British forces. No policeman will get in trouble for shooting any man". In April the Dail Eireann elected Eamon de Valera, a veteran of the Easter Rising, as president of this fledgeling republic. The introduction of conscription in Ireland created a significant backlash from the Irish people, the Catholic clergy and various political groups. [62] The violence used was at first deeply unpopular with Irish people and it took the heavy-handed British response to popularise it among much of the population.[63]. The long-planned evacuation from dozens of barracks in what the army called "Southern Ireland" started on 12 January 1922, following the ratification of the Treaty and took nearly a year, organised by General Nevil Macready. By the time of the truce, however, many republican leaders, including Michael Collins, were convinced that if the war went on for much longer, there was a chance that the IRA campaign as it was then organised could be brought to a standstill. Several thousand Catholics fled the violence and sought refuge in Glasgow and Dublin. [147] The outbreak of the civil war in the South ended the violence in the North, as the war demoralised the IRA in the north east and distracted the attention of the rest of the organisation from the question of partition. war-of-independence-top.htmlThe Irish War of Independence was a major event Ireland’s history. [88] Shortly afterwards, in January 1921, "official reprisals" were sanctioned by the British and they began with the burning of seven houses in Midleton, County Cork. Just two days later, on 21 March, the Kerry IRA attacked a train at the Headford junction near Killarney. The northern IRA units came under pressure from the leadership in Dublin to step up attacks in line with the rest of the country. [161] Particularly controversial in this regard has been the Dunmanway killings of April 1922, when ten Protestants were killed and three "disappeared" over two nights. From the point of view of the British government, it appeared as if the IRA's guerrilla campaign would continue indefinitely, with spiralling costs in British casualties and in money. The official account was that the three men were shot "while trying to escape", which was rejected by Irish nationalists, who were certain the men had been tortured then murdered.[94][95]. [133] Sectarian rioting broke out in response in Belfast and Derry, resulting in about 40 deaths and many Catholics and Protestants being expelled from their homes. However, they meted extreme violence and cruelty that they ended up radicalizing the least radical Irish citizens. For more information, visit Alpha History or our Terms of Use. Of Civil disobedience rather than the IRA 's popularity arose from the excessive reaction of the War was between..., gun battles and bombings loss of life and serious injury among the Catholic and. 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