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The battle for Normandy June-August 1944, launched on D-Day exactly 75 years ago, marked, after Stalingrad, the beginning of the end of Nazi Germany. It was a major battle. The Allies suffered 209,672 casualties of whom 36,796 were killed. Some 28,000 Allied airman were lost in the months preceding and during the campaign.
I think that even today if a 21 years old woman applied for permanency to her job as Galway county surveyor, which she held from December 1906 for five months, and was turned down due to her young age and lack of experience, most of us would not be surprised.
As I am compiling this column, it is just before the Westminster vote on Brexit. All observers feel the vote will be defeated, and some say very heavily. Be that as it may, the real question now is, what does Theresa May do next? She has to come back next Monday with a further plan of where she will go and what she will do. More and more it appears that the extension of time, which could be looked for at the end of March, is what is in sight, but we are in the dark and do not have any certainty about the outcome. I am sorry that this is so and apologise to the readers, but there is nothing that I or even the most renowned of columnists in the UK or Ireland can do – we cannot see the way forward as yet.
"THE FIRST World War, it came and it went, the reasons for fighting I never did get," sang Bob Dylan on 'With God On Our Side', and unlike WWI, the Great War's causes are complex and not straightforward.
Mechanics’ institutes originated in Scotland in the 1820s. In 1826 a committee formed the first such institute in Galway when it set out a library and newspaper reading room in the ballroom of the Corn Exchange in Eyre Square. Its primary aim was educational and it had rules prohibiting discussion of politics and religion. Difficulties arose when some of the patrons of the facility presumed they could tell the members how to vote in an election and so the institute collapsed.
When all is said and done, there is great wisdom to be got from Puss in Boots in Shrek. A master of the art of life, a great survivor, a curator of the nine lives that he was born with, he was often known to impart the words of a creature who had lived life to the full and knew all its twists and turns.
In political terms, these last few weeks have been depressing. First, we were subjected to the electoral version of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire? (aka the Irish presidency), while thousands of Irish families remain homeless, with no sign of a publicly financed house building programme.
The Lough Rea Hotel and Spa will host a Brexit Masterclass Breakfast with RTÉ’s Europe Editor, Tony Connelly on Wednesday 26 September at 7:30am. The broadcaster and historian, John Bowman, will moderate the event.
ANY GALWEGIANS possessing a Cumann na mBan badge from the revolutionary era are being asked to bring it to the Galway City Museum which is holding an illustrated talk on the group this weekend.
Historian Catherine Corless has declined an invitation to a civic reception for Pope Francis at Dublin Castle this Saturday.