Returning Home: Irish Ex-Servicemen after the Second World War

Bernard Kelly

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Returning Home investigates one of the least known periods in Irish history - the story of the estimated 12,000 Irish veterans who returned to Ireland after the end of the Second World War. They came back to a country where jobs were scarce, commemoration was a divisive issue, and the public had little understanding of the veteran's experiences. Even worse, an estimated 5,000 deserters from the Irish army faced potentially severe punishment when they returned home. Based on interviews with surviving veterans and drawing on a wide array of archival sources, Returning Home explores how Irish ex-servicemen coped with the difficult task of re-integration into Irish civilian society. The book details their impact on government policy, their economic difficulties, struggles with psychological problems, the vexed issue of Remembrance, and the treatment of deserters from the Irish forces. Returning Home makes an important contribution to how we view Ireland's connection to the Second World War.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages288
ISBN (Print)9781908928047
Publication statusPublished - 30 May 2012


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