This chapter examines the role of the civil wars and irregularism in the political violence in Ireland during the early 1900s. It suggests that the Irish had become indifferent and hostile to government during centuries of British rule so that when political independence came the definition of patriotism had to be changed. After Ireland's independence it took time for the Irish people to develop a sense of civic responsibility. The main challenge faced by the provisional government of Ireland after 1921 was to hold good against the claims of extremist groups using violent methods.
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