In July 1913 the Irish Republican Brotherhood published an anti-enlistment leaflet entitled “War – England, Germany and Ireland”
Among those who distributed the leaflet was IRB member Art O’Donnell, from Tullycrine, Co. Clare. O’Donnell followed in his father’s footsteps when he joined the brotherhood in 1908 and was sworn in by his first cousin Con Colbert (later executed in 1916). Art handed out the anti-enlistment leaflets after Mass on a Sunday. It read..
War is imminent between England and Germany.
England’s cowardly and degenerate population won’t make soldiers.
Not so the Germans.
They are trained and ready.
What will England do?
She will recruit Irishmen to fight Germany for her.
She will then, when finished with them, fling them back to the workhouses of Ireland reeking with foul filthy diseases.
A London daily newspaper, The Morning Post, mistakenly reported that the Dublin Vigilance Committee was behind the leaflet. This inaccurate reporting culminated at the same newspaper in 1920 when it published a series of articles based on the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.
- Witness Statement of Art O’Donnell, Commandant of the West Clare Brigade (Bureau of Military History, 1955)
- Art O’Donnell Manuscript, Clare Archives