Ireland: A Voice Among the Nations: a lavish photographic history of Irish foreign policy

This book marking a century of foreign policy provides a well-written overview

Minister of external affairs Frank Aiken and taoiseach Éamon de Valera

Minister of external affairs Frank Aiken and taoiseach Éamon de Valera

Exactly 100 years ago, the British prime minister David Lloyd George asserted in the House of Commons in relation to the demand for an Irish republic that “any attempt at secession will be fought, with the same determination, with the same resources, with the same resolve, as the northern states of America put into the fight against the southern states. It is important that this should be known not merely throughout the world, but in Ireland itself.”

As he spoke the leader of the Irish republican movement, Éamon de Valera, was in that same America, attempting to drum up political support and funds for the declared Irish republic. What both men knew was that theirs was a propaganda battle as well as a political and military challenge and making their respective cases to the wider world was essential.

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