No. 7 NAI DFA ES Paris 1922-23

Extract from a letter from Sean Murphy to Desmond FitzGerald (Dublin)

PARIS, 11 December 1922

[Matter omitted]
I am enclosing some cuttings from the French press. The proclamation announcing that the execution of Rory O'Connor and Liam Mellows was an official reprisal for the assassination of Sean Hales, had a very bad effect here. Journalists and others whom I met including Monsieur Goblet considered it a very serious tactical mistake as far as opinion outside Ireland is concerned. The French in particular have a horror of reprisals. They all agreed that the executions were perfectly justifiable on the ground that these men were in rebellion against the lawful government, but they compared the reprisals to the recent executions in Greece. They also commented on the execution of Childers on the charge of having a revolver in his possession, when the government had various other charges to try him on. These remarks were made by people who are friendly to the Government, and not critically.

Is mise, le meas mór,

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