Where’s evidence of sectarian clear-out?

IN the course of criticising the President’s 1916 speech, Robin Bury (Letters, Feb 13) claims that “large numbers of Protestants were cleared out during a campaign of intimidation and persecution - between 1920 and 1924, some 60,000”.

Mr Bury is not simply suggesting that some Protestants left because they found the new regime uncongenial or because their constitutional allegiance lay elsewhere.

He is repeating the sensational assertion, made from time to time by supporters to the Reform movement, that a systematic campaign of sectarian cleansing forced these huge numbers of Protestants out of Ireland in the early 1920s.

Where is the evidence for this campaign? Who exactly are the enforcers? Was it directed from the top? What means were used?

What was the pattern of the ‘campaign’ in different areas? Over what timespan precisely did it take place? Mr Bury now owes it to the historical record to supply the detailed evidence and the documented statistics.

John A Murphy

‘Dun Chaoin’


Douglas Road


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