Taoiseach John Bruton – Communist Party Leader Michael O’Riordan at Today in Irish History

May 18: TODAY in Irish History:

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Snippets of Irish History by Conor Cunneen IrishmanSpeaks 

Conor is a Chicago based Motivational Humorous Business Speaker, Author and History buff.

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WATCH: A Short History of Ireland

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1947: Politician John Bruton

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John Bruton is born in Dunboyne, Co. Meath. Bruton was Taoiseach (PM) during the early Celtic Tiger years of 1994-1997.

Bruton was first elected to  the Dáil in 1969 at the age of 22 as a member of the Fine Gael Party, becoming Party Leader in 1990 and leading it into government in 1994. He previously served as Ireland’s Minister for Finance (1981-1982 and 1986-1987); Minister for Industry & Energy (1982-1983); Minister for Trade, Commerce & Tourism (1983-1986); and was Parliamentary Secretary (Junior Minister) from 1973-1977.

In 2004, he was appointed European Union Ambassador to the United States, a position he held until 2010.

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2006: Michael O’Riordan – Communist Party of Ireland

Michael O’Riordan, founder of the Communist Party of Ireland dies age 88. Not too surprisingly, O’Riordan fought a lonely battle in encouraging the Irish buy into Communism.

Originally active in the IRA following Irish independence, O’Riordan  joined the Communist Party of Ireland in 1935. During the 30s – a time of economic depression and hardship, Communism was seen by many in Europe and USA as the answer to the problems of the working class. O’Riordan fought in the Spanish Civil War with the  XVth International Brigade, being severely wounded on the Ebro front. He was repatriated to Ireland  in September 1938 after the International Brigades were disbanded.

His IRA activity during World War II saw him interned in 1939. Following his release in 1943, he played an active part in local politics and made five failed attempts to get elected to Dail Eireann. In 1965 he became full-time Secretary General of the Communist Party of Ireland, a post from which he retired in 1983, when he was elected National Chairman.

His impact on the Irish political scene was ultimately minimal, but even his opponents accepted him as a man of principle.

A youthful Michael O’Riordan in International Brigade uniform

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Want to learn more about Ireland? See these images and more in the acclaimed For the Love of Being Irish

Irish gift ideas. Best selling Irish booksRonnie Drew and Luke Kelly - Musical Irish Gifts to the worldJoyce Image in For the Love of Being IrishMichael Collins: Image from For the Love of Being Irish

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This history is written by Irish author, business keynote speaker and award winning humorist IrishmanSpeaks – Conor Cunneen. If you spot any inaccuracies or wish to make a comment, please don’t hesitate to contact us via the comment button.

Visit Conor’s YouTube channel IrishmanSpeaks to Laugh and Learn.

Tags: Best Irish Gift, Creative Irish Gift, Unique Irish Gifts, Irish Books, Irish Authors, Today in Irish History TODAY IN IRISH HISTORY (published by IrishmanSpeaks)

   

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