Chief of Staff of the IRA, Michael Collins’ successor as Commander in Chief of the National Army and founding member of Cumann na nGaedheal and later leader of Fine Gael: a new biography of revolutionary leader Richard Mulcahy is long overdue. But who was the complicated man behind the myth? Conspiratorial IRB nationalist; proud, stubborn military tribune; pragmatic, political officeholder; serious-minded, self-reliant individual; or a fascinating combination of these and other complex traits?
Richard Mulcahy: From the Politics of War to the Politics of Peace explores the awkward, often competitive, relationships Mulcahy had with Brugha, Cosgrave, de Valera, O’Higgins and Stack, and investigates the forging of the Irish national army out of the furnace of change brought about by the rise of militarism, a mismanaged rebellion and two wars, one of liberation, the other of brothers; the ambiguous role of the IRB; and the strategically important military and political executive positions that Mulcahy himself occupied during the post-rebellion, army-building and state-building phase of 1917–24.
This extensively researched new biographical study of Richard Mulcahy and the struggle for supremacy over the post-revolutionary government–army relationship, is a vital contribution to understanding Ireland’s revolutionary past and present.
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Date of Publication: 01/11/2019