Sunday 26 February 2017

Hitler's interest in anti-Semitic Irish was well founded

Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

A fascist salute being given at Blueshirt meeting at Charleville, Co Cork, in April 1934
A fascist salute being given at Blueshirt meeting at Charleville, Co Cork, in April 1934

In his article in your paper on October 1, Brian Murphy expressed surprise at Hitler's interest in the 1938 appointment of Douglas Hyde as the first President of Ireland. Hitler's interest sprang from his awareness that diplomatic relations with our newish democracy were significant: he believed ours to be the only one that was pro-Nazi and anti-Semitic.

This impression was given to the dictator by Charles Bewley who had been appointed our ambassador in 1933-1939. Long before that, during Bewley's time as our trade representative abroad, he had enjoyed very close ties with the Nazi 'aristocracy'. Among his writings was a hagiography of Hermann Goering.

Originally he had been appointed by the first Dáil as a consul for trade in Berlin. There he insulted Robert Briscoe, who was sent to Berlin to procure arms. Bewley, in reply to a German query about Briscoe's appointment, said "it was unlikely that a Jew of his type would be appointed". Bewley was recalled to Dublin. That was in 1922, long before Hitler assumed power.

Please sign in or register with Independent.ie for free access to Opinions.

Sign In

Read More

Don't Miss

Editor's Choice