Gaslighting is nothing new in modern politics. Day after day, massive media and political institutions both downplay the importance of certain elements of world history, while massively inflating others. 

For those of us critical of the contemporary world, this is hardly news. One has come to expect that the story presented to you on a variety of topics are warped to a nigh unrecognizable degree. 

And yet the lengths to which the worldwide media has gone in trying to erase the existence of Irish slaves still shocks me. 

Simply putting in the terms ‘Irish Slaves’ into Google reveals nothing but gaslighting articles speaking out about how the very idea of an Irish slave is a ‘white supremacist’ myth. Of course, the authors of these pages more often than not are the descendants of groups who directly benefited from the mass exploitation of the Irish, but let’s leave that to one side.

So, were the Irish slaves? Before I answer this question, I will set myself a ground rule. Purely for the sake of argument, I will not consider ‘Indentured Servitude’ as a form of slavery in this article. While this barbaric practice would constitute a form of slavery to any reasonable person, for my mostly Anglo interlocutors, it does not.

From what I can see, this is due to the fact that the abhorrent fate of an indentured servant was supposedly not something inherited by one’s children. Never mind the fact that those children would have been deprived of their homeland and their culture by the practice. For the privileged writers at the Irish Times, such a loss is apparently trivial, and as such ‘Indentured Servitude’ cannot be considered a kind of slavery.

But that’s okay. I don’t need to cite the awful experiences of the Irish in North America. Or in Jamaica. Or Australia. While my personal belief is that this handicap imposed on me by our so-called ‘intellectual’ class is an unjustifiable one, borne largely out of anti-european hatred, it is nevertheless a handicap I can live with. 

So, without further ado, let us take a brief look at the history of Irish slaves.

Irish slaves have existed in one form or another since the genesis of Irish as an identity. Celtic Ireland had a slave caste in the form of the daer fuidhir. These people were not entitled to bear arms, nor to recompense if a family member was murdered. It was also not uncommon for these slaves to be sold off to labour in Roman Britain.

However, the daer fuidhir caste wasn’t utterly inescapable, and the prospect of a family moving up the caste system was far from unheard of. As such, perhaps our beloved ‘intellectuals’ may not want to call this a form of slavery either. 

Slavery in Ireland only really hit its height with the arrival of the Vikings. This warlike foreign force was fond of their thralls, slaves they took from the people they raided and conquered. Dublin served as a significant hub for the sale of Gaelic slaves both domestically and internationally. Such slaves were so prolific throughout the Norse world that a significant proportion of Scandinavian DNA can be traced back to Irish slaves. This goes especially for Iceland, where the DNA of the average resident is around 30% Gaelic. 

To say the life of a thrall was brutal would be a massive understatement. Both physical and psychological abuse was common for these slaves. In fact, it appears that, upon their master’s death, thralls were often ritually sacrificed in order to follow their master into the afterlife.

Arab explorer and theologian Ibn Fadlan describes one such sacrifice in gruesome detail, writing that a female slave was raped by multiple men, stabbed, and finally throttled, before burning with her master and the rest of his grave goods. While such 3rd party accounts of indigenous traditions should always be looked upon with a certain degree of skepticism, the archeological record strongly supports Ibn Fadlan’s account. It is rather common to find beheaded bodies alongside sans any grave goods alongside the remains of an important Viking. 

However, perhaps the plight of the thrall occurred too long ago for the ‘intellectuals’ in our society to actually count it as relevant to our discussion. If such is the case, then I will turn our attention towards the Barbary slave trade.

From the early 16th to late 18th century, Barbary corsairs were a near constant threat on European shorelines. These pirates primarily traded in slaves, capturing unsuspecting people in coastal villages and selling them in their base cities of Algiers, Tripoli and Tunis. White slaves were of particular value to these pirates, with caucasian females often fetching far higher prices within the Ottoman trade compared to women of other backgrounds. Historians estimate that up to 1.25 million people of European descent were abducted and sold into slavery by these pirates.

The Sack of Baltimore in West Cork is perhaps the most famous of these Barbary raids. Led by famous Dutch Muslim convert and pirate, Murat Reis the Younger, Barbary pirates abducted the entire population of mostly Protestant settlers in a single night. As a result, Baltimore was abandoned until the 18th century.

The Barbary slave trade made up a small part of the much larger slave industry within the Ottoman Empire. Unlike other civilizations, the Ottoman Empire was truly built on slavery. Between a fifth and a quarter of the population of Istanbul at one stage were slaves, consisting of labourers, concubines, and even bureaucrats. Quite famously, a significant part of the Ottoman Empire’s military were made up of slave converts, taken from non-muslim families as boys and molded into the Empires most elite soldiers.

In conclusion, the Irish were most certainly slaves, and any attempt to say otherwise is blatantly false. So why do so many powerful people, institutions and publications make this claim?

One response I am expecting is that no one is making this claim. Instead, these people are making the claim that the Irish were never slaves on the American continents. However, this response does not stand up to the most basic scrutiny. 

If all the articles calling out the ‘white supremacist myth’ of Irish slavery were merely ‘refuting’ the idea that there were Irish slaves in the US, then every single article would feature two things. First, they would be clearly marked as saying that the Irish were not slaves specifically in America. While some articles do indeed do this, they more often than not only passively mention the fact they’re talking about America only, with most not even mentioning the geographical limit at all.

Secondly, they would also clearly point out that the Irish were slaves in other areas of the world at various points in history, just as I have in this article. None of the articles ‘refuting Irish slavery’ do this. Instead, they will blather on and on about how ‘Irish’ people have benefitted from slavery, using the term to refer to the protestant ascendency of the island. Victim blaming at its finest.

With that argument out of the way, let us return to the question of why so many people, institutions and publications claim the Irish were never slaves. My answer is as follows.

Firstly, it is a result of the reduction of the Irish race into the construct of ‘whiteness’. While the throwing around of the term social construct is usually the sole remit of the modern progressive, the dogmatic denial of Irish slavery is actually the result of such a social construct. 

With the overwhelming dominance of the United States in the 21st century, the contemporary intellectual class wishes nothing more but to emulate their perceived center of the world. As such, the issues of this land are being examined more and more through an American lens.

As a result, ethnic groups that have spent thousands of years fighting each other are not only reconciled, but conflated in the mind of the modern ‘intellectual’. In the minds of these people, a Protestant landlord was no different than his Gaelic serf. Why? Because they were both ‘White’, and they were both ‘Irish’. Therefore, the sins of one are the sins of the other.

Another consequence of this americaphilia is the denigration of the reality of events that occurred outside of the United States. For these ‘intellectuals’, the only history that really matters is American history, and the history that was impacted by and had a direct impact on the American continent. This is why when the likes of Boko Haram kidnap an entire village, such an event is given next to no coverage, but when a police officer kills a black man in the US, mass protests are warranted, even during a deadly pandemic.

When it comes to the Irish slavery question then, all that really matters is what happened in North America. Since no Irish people were slaves in North America, then Irish slavery is, by definition, a myth. The existence of Irish slaves outside America at the exact same time is of no consequence, as the only events that are truly real are those that happened in America.

Lastly, as mentioned at the start of this article, probably the greatest reason for the propagation of this lie is that these groups have a massive anti-European bias. More specifically, they have an anti-American-of-european-descent bias. The question of Irish slavery, and the massive media crusade against the recognition of it as having existed, really has next to nothing to do with Irish people at all. Instead, it is merely used as a weapon against so-called ‘white’ Americans who believe they have a right to stand up for themselves. Ultimately, the very same people who are descended from those who exploited this island for centuries are now using that very history to subdue another group they wish to oppress.

However, no matter how much these people try to gaslight history, the truth remains eternal. The Irish were indeed slaves. Deal with it.

Posted by Daithí O'Duibhne

24 Comments

  1. Almost One Million Irish Slaves At Risk Of Being Scrubbed From History

    https://newspunch.com/almost-one-million-irish-slaves-at-risk-of-being-scrubbed-from-history/

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  2. Michael McCarthy 14/06/2020 at 7:33 pm

    The book, They were white and they were slaves, by Michael Hoffman is an essential read, as is the work of the African, professor Tony Martin, now on YouTube and bitchute. White Christian civilization stop the slave trade, thanks to the work of William Wilberforce and others. Our civilization is the only civilization to have outlawed slavery. It still exists elsewhere.

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  3. Liam Ó Murchadha 16/06/2020 at 5:07 am

    There is an out-of-the-way glen in the mountains of western Virginia, whose inhabitants are called “Dominickers”. The doctor who would, from time to time, visit its inhabitants, as an act of genuine Christian charity, explained one day (in the 1960s), that the inhabitants were an amalgam of the descendants of runaways, fleeing from involuntary servitude. There were Africans, Europeans (mostly Irish, especially, but not exclusively, from the 1650s Cromwellian “to Hell or to Connacht” period), and native Americans – far from their own tribal lands. The doctor mentioned that a woman of that mountain community once showed him a “necklace”, which had been handed down in her family, for generations. He immediately identified it as a Rosary – she hadn’t a clue of what he was talking about.
    Their physical appearance generally reflected the blend – including bone structure and skin color. Once in a while one would come down into The Valley, usually integrating with a “colored” community. One of these, who had a responsible job in a hospital (where I was once a patient) became a dear friend.

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  4. Indentured servitude means that there was an agreement between two parties to work for set length of time in return for transport to the new world. However Irish people were often kidnapped, transported, imprisoned and forced to work against their will. They were slaves. The “debunking” articles are unable to deny that Irish people were kidnapped, transported , imprisoned and forced to work against their will. Instead they call these people “involuntary indentured servants ” or some other recently made up term. This is nothing short of fraud.

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  5. Peadar Ó'Colmáin 17/06/2020 at 9:20 pm

    This article is pathetic. It is an effort to whitewash the part played by England in the enslavement of irish people.

    We know that the British tried to wipe us out completely between 1845 and 1851. It also happened further back under Cromwell. It wouldn’t have bothered them a jot to sell children as slaves and it would have had the added advantage of clearing Ireland for them. We must however, be careful that this argument is not used by others to argue against black people when they talk about what has been done to their people in the past. The number of black Africans who died as a result of slavery is generally put at 180 million.

    I am looking at records of court cases in Waterford that go back as far as 1311.

    One was for the murder of a man called “Roger” who was an Irishman and of the surname of “Ohedirscoll” (O’Driscoll no doubt).
    That fact that he was an Irishman got his assailant off the hook. The court ruled that he “was held to be an Irishman all his life. Therefore as regards the felony William is quit”. However, the court also ruled that the Irishman was the King’s property and that the King would have to be compensated for the loss of his Irishman. “let William be re-committed to gaol until he find pledges of five marks, to be paid to the King for the said hibernicus”.

    In another case the killer even claimed as his defence that since the victim was an Irishman, no crime had been committed. He went on to say that he was happy to compensate the Irishman’s owner for his loss.

    Robert le Waleys, charged with the death of John, son of Yvor
    McGillemory, came and acknowledged that he slew John. He says,
    however, that he could not by that slaying have committed felony,
    because John was pure hibernicus and not of free blood, and when the
    lord of the said John, whose hibernicus John was when he was slain,
    wished to demand payment for the slaying of John, his hibernicus, he,
    Robert, would be ready to answer for the payment as justice required.

    It is clear from these two cases alone that an Irishman was the property of his owner and was thus a slave in the eyes of the law. I know that the original article about Irish slaves was poorly researched and partly falsified in that it implied that the Zong Massacre of 1781 was the massacre of 132 Irish slaves when the victims were in fact black Africans.
    It just seems to me that the two sides in the debate have their own agendas and the truth might get trampled on. I believe we should still report the Irish slavery while making it clear that we in no way seek to denigrate the suffering of the Africans who were slaves.

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    1. It is not accessible.

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      1. It was removed because of attacks made on the publisher by Liam Hogan.

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  6. The Irish were indeed Not slaves, they were by definition in law, of less worth than the average slave!. The loss of an Irish slave was compensated as one would compensate a Dog owner for the loss of his / her pet, in other words said compensation was for loss of property.

    In fact at one time the Irishman was of no actual value, until such time/s as their death became an inconvenience to their master / owner or the Crown itself.

    The issue around recognizing Irish enslavement is not a new one. In fact at one time the issue of concern was less about enslavement of ones own race and more about enslavement of ones intellectual (or not) equal. Many consider this is the actual birth of ” The Stupid Irish” as a means of both control over and justification for the poor treatment , of what at face value appears to be mistreatment of ones otherwise equal.

    The current movement especially within the United States, where it has become almost fashionable to support Black folk, based on their suffering at the hands of their white masters in Europe and the US.

    While most Blacks are happy, even inclined towards supporting and giving recognition of their Irish brothers and Sisters in recognizing both the harm and suffering imposed upon them as slaves. Their biggest support group or benefactors (so to speak) , guilt ridden mainly wealthy white Americans will never accept the Irish as having been slaves. As I suspect, that there is both a very uncomfortable and unacceptable stigma surrounding and in conceding the very possibility of enslaving one of their own kind (White skinned) and at the same time admitting those of the white race could have been enslaved, their whole belief system becomes massively unstable.

    Simply put it’s a can of worms which at all costs must never be opened. But instead replaced by claims of indentured servitude as opposed to slavery!.

    I am not for a moment denying the terrible suffering of the Black person at the hands of his / her White Masters, nor for that matter am I measuring Black enslavement against Irish enslavement. To do so serves absolutely NO PURPOSE !. If two men are killed by the same man, it serves no purpose to try to figure out which victim died first or which suffered most, AS BOTH ARE VICTIMS!.

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    1. Tell that to BLM

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    2. We inherit the sins of OUR country, not other countries history. U. S. slavery , Jim Crow and we to this day struggle with the unconscious racism put on the Black man and woman? Trying to demean the severity of OUR injustices by comparing it to any other slave history, is in itself a ‘racial dog whistle’. Israel has a history of being enslave and having slaves? Never seen any ”no Irish” served signs, but I remember ” no black” and ”whites only” signs?

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      1. I’ve seen signs that read “No dogs, no Irish allowed” and plenty of signs that read “Irish need not apply” also in newspaper clippings!

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      2. “We inherit the sins of OUR country…”

        Excuse Me… I “inherit” the sins of No One! EVER…! Better get that through your thick skull.

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  7. great article

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  8. Daniel Gallagher 22/06/2020 at 4:26 pm

    Another interesting note to Irish in America was in the building of the Washington canal. Congress wanted slaves to help build it. Even though slave owners would be compensated they refused because of the high death rate in canal building and did not want to loose their property. Instead Irish immigrants where were used . In a nut shell the Irish were expendable, slaves were not.

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  9. Dear Burkean, please consider doing a longer piece/investigation into Limerick based Liam Hogan. He has singlehandedly made this non-issue into a rallying cry for the far left and I have to wonder about any possible ties to Antifa. I understand that the true history has indeed been hijacked by racists in America but frankly if you claim that Bond Servants were not slaves then you also deny the *modern* Bond Servants who are indeed considered slaves by modern organizations seeking to end modern slavery. As far as I can tell most current Bond Servants (in their millions) happen to be people of color.

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  10. Irish slaves? No doubt in fact most likely all ethnicities nationality’s were slaves at one point going back far enough and considering internal wars and battles the winning side would no doubt enslave some of the loosing side so throughout human history there were slaves always

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    1. Nicholas M Sabatino 27/08/2020 at 2:55 am

      I have to agree with this… Countless people have been enslaved throughout history. How about we keep the past where it is, and start having real conversations about the struggles we all face right here and now! And think about what we need to do to ensure that we lift up people instead.

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      1. Peadar Ó'Colmáin 30/08/2020 at 10:01 am

        Nicholas, leaving the past behind would indeed give mankind a clean sheet and a new start. However if you want to promote tis as an ideology it will mean demolishing Auschwitz and getting rid of all films that demonize Germany or Japan or North Korea etc. It just seems to me that when a country or a person says that the past should be left behind they mean that certain aspects of their own country’s past should be left behind and other pieces of history should be kept alive. We are constantly hearing from the mainstream media “He who forgets the mistakes of the past is condemned to repeat them”. That’s when they are talking about Germany. However, if one mentions the 150 million people murdered by the British Army or the 200 million people murdered so far by the USA then we are digging up the past and living in the past. Anyway I do agree with you that it would be nice to leave the past behind but I think it’s unlikely that we will be leaving ALL the past behind. Peadar O’Colmáin

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  11. This article is very good and I appreciate it’s writer and the hard work into the real fact finding.

    BLM is based in Marxism according to co-founder Patrisse Cullors who is in all the media lately stating it and talking about their agenda and manifesto that can be found on line.

    I can not compare African chattel slavery to the various types of slavery found in my Irish/Scottish heritage simply because it is different, but it was slavery. Brutal slavery and it happened. Perhaps the political spin cycle is determined to rinse out the fact white people were slaves so they can forward their agenda.

    To admit the truth would only complicate what the left is trying to achieve, a ruling class through socialism and Marxism, to gain control of We The People.

    Also to note, when George Washington needed soldiers to fight in America’s different wars, the Irish were usually first to respond. See the history of the people of the Appalachians.

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  12. I’d like to do more research on this topic. I only heard about it for the first time last week when my grandma talked about it.

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  13. Sheila Alford Sorrells-Hite 13/07/2020 at 9:22 pm

    I find that this is important facts of our nation. Blacks do not have a monopoly on ethnicity slavery & this needs to be explored & presented as also part of the founding of this nation.

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  14. Denny Carroll 16/07/2020 at 11:00 am

    The articles that try to debunk the Irish slave question always say that the Irish were indentured servants not slaves. They don’t put up evidence to support their claim. If all those Irish were indeed indentured there had to be a contract to give them a date to end their servitude.
    I get it that was 400 +/- years ago there at least one contract to prove this. No first hand accounts of an indentured servant..
    All I. Hear and see is some one denying slave status.
    If we had investigative reporting with sources it would be more definitive. Until then I call Bull crap.

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  15. I have been posting about this exact thing for a couple months. I’m wondering if you are the person who I was sharing information on this on Twitter? I used #IrishLivesMatter for every article on this.
    But I just wanted to say that I love this. You did an excellent job!

    Reply

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