By Daniel Leach
From 1937 to 1950 the Irish government granted political asylum to a number of European minority nationalists, many of whom were wanted for crimes of collaboration with Axis forces during the Second World War. Bretons, Basques, Scots, Flemings even a high-ranking Croat later dubbed the Yugoslav Himmler all found temporary or permanent refuge in Ireland. Refuge Ireland reveals for the first time why Dublin sheltered fugitives who had so disastrously regarded Nazi invasion as their nationalist opportunity. Employing unpublished sources and personal accounts, Daniel Leach explores the role of political asylum in asserting Irish sovereignty, Catholic anti-Communism and revolutionary heritage, and exposes a previously hidden and controversial chapter of Irish and European history one which, through the continued actions of postwar and even modern exiles, continues to affect Ireland's reputation to this day. "A well-researched, coherently argued and clearly written piece of work which combines scholarship with accessibility ... Leach has consulted an impressive range of original sources in a number of languages and has used them intelligently to develop a persuasive argument about the nature of Irish asylum policy". Eunan O'Halpin (author of Defending Ireland).
Publication Date: 4/15/2009