No. 223 NAI DFA ES Box 30 File 195

George Gavan Duffy to Joseph Connolly (New York)


Dublin, 17 January 1922

A Chara,
You will no doubt wish for guidance in regard to the attitude you will adopt, as Consul, in facing the present political situation. The facts which you should keep clearly in mind are the following:

1. The Republican Government remains in being and continues to function. You are an officer of the Republican Government.

2. Dail Eireann, the Sovereign National Assembly, has approved of the Treaty of 6th December and by so doing has voted for the immediate setting up of the Provisional Government for the Irish Free State and the ultimate abolition of the present Republican Government.

3. The overwhelming majority of the people of Ireland are beyond doubt at present in favour of the carrying into effect the terms of the Treaty of December 6th. In some districts there is practical unanimity. In the districts where the opponents of the Treaty are strongest they do not themselves estimate their numbers at more than 30% of the population. Even if the anti-treaty party were to grow stronger in the interval between the present date and the time when it will be possible to have a general election under the Free State Constitution, it is still certain that by a large majority the Irish people would give a mandate for the final ratification of the Treaty and would formally sanction the setting up of the Free State.

You will, therefore, continue to carry out your duties in the same manner as heretofore, but it will not be part of your duty to the Republic to intervene in the political controversy which will be carried on round the Treaty. While it is no part of your business to do anything towards popularising the proposed Irish Free State, you are clearly bound in your official capacity not to do anything which would make difficulties for the Government of the Irish Free State when it comes to take over the Consular Service.

Mise le meas,

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