By Tom Barry
First released in 1949, Guerilla Days in eire is a rare tale of the Irish warfare of Independence and the struggle among unequal forces, which led to the withdrawal of the British from twenty-six counties. Tom Barry describes the establishing of the West Cork flying column, its education, and the plan of crusade. particularly he provides his account of the Kilmichael ambush, essentially the most debatable episodes of the battle of Independence.
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First released in 1949, Guerilla Days in eire is a unprecedented tale of the Irish conflict of Independence and the struggle among unequal forces, which resulted in the withdrawal of the British from twenty-six counties. Tom Barry describes the constructing of the West Cork flying column, its education, and the plan of crusade.
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The officers showed an extraordinary keenness on all parades, but particularly for sham battles. m. in a large barn for a lecture or for written exercises. The lectures were not those which could be compiled from textbooks, since there were none which could tell this Flying Column how it could fight and continue to exist in the midst of enemy posts through the years ahead. A. policy, Flying Column tactics and security measures, ambushes, town fighting, elementary signals, map reading and blackboard problems were all considered until the men’s minds held nothing but thought of war.
Apart from the ex-ranker General Boyd, who as commander of Dublin District was the most successful, Barry was opposed by the most formidable combination of British officers then in Ireland. Strickland, commander of the Sixth Division that covered the Martial Law Area, if not brilliant, was at least more competent than his peers. A. Intelligence Officer in Cork, the historian Florrie O’Donoghue. C. of the Essex as Barry and Deasy believed) and his successes become evident in Barry’s account. He was decorated for his services in Cork, and became something of an authority on guerilla warfare on the basis of his experience here.
Were a man found without his rifle or equipment off parade, even a few yards from his billet, he was sharply reprimanded. All the time the word “ Security ” was dinned into these men. Their watchwords were discipline, speed, silence and mobility. Another instance, after the first hour on parade, the Column was ordered to fall out for a few minutes’ rest. The four sections moved towards one another in a large group in the middle of the field, and then sprawled on the ground. They were immediately ordered to fall in again and were questioned as to what they thought the consequences would be, if the British could line one of the ditches and open fire on them bunched together in the middle of a large field.