Skip to comments.Spitfire diaries: The strange life in Dublin's PoW camp
Posted on 06/28/2011 5:45:35 AM PDT by decimon
An attempt to recover a Spitfire from a peat bog in Donegal will highlight the peculiar story of the men - both British and German - who spent much of World War II in relative comfort in neighbouring prisoner of war camps in Dublin, writes historian Dan Snow.
The pilot was 23-year-old Roland "Bud" Wolfe, an RAF officer from 133 "Eagle" Squadron, a unit entirely composed of Americans.
On 13 December 1941 he walked straight out of camp and after a meal in a hotel, which he did not pay for, he headed into nearby Dublin and caught the train the next day to Belfast.
The decision was made to send Wolfe back to The Curragh and internment.
Finally in 1943, with the US in the war, and the tide slowly turning, The Curragh was closed and the internees returned. Wolfe joined the US Army Air Force and served once again on the front line.
So great was his love of flying that he also served in Korea and even Vietnam. He eventually died in 1994.
(Excerpt) Read more at bbc.co.uk ...
Wow, what a story!
I'm not sure this is accurate.
Does anybody know if the government has the power to do this or if it was done to US volunteers fighting for the Brits before we entered the war? I've never heard of such a thing.
I believe there was some kind of “administrative” procedure to state that as long as they wore the uniform of another nation they were not “considered” to be citizens. It all had to do with our supposed “neutrality” and should one of these guys fall into the bad guys hands.
I believe the men that flew in the Flying Tigers were also put into some special “non-citizen” category.
Obviously, once we entered the war this all went away.
were = was
The Flying Tigers were essentially mercenaries.
It is OK to fight for a foreign country, as long as you don’t swear allegiance to it. This is basiclly how thr French Foreign Legion works.
I suspect this did not “strip them of citizenship.”
It probably was that the US classified them as non-citizens for purposes of US protection, if fighting in a war where US was neutral. Which makes perfect sense.
AFAIK, there is no mechanism by which a born US citizen can be stripped of his citizenship in the legal sense. Even renouncing your citizenship voluntarily is quite a production number.
They made a movie about this, a few years back.
They documented the officer’s escape with a few liberties.
Airmen were allowed to visit the local town if they signed out of the “prison”. By word of honor (and treaty?) the agreed to return if they signed out.
In the movie, the officer signs out and leaves the gates to catch a cab. Then, somebody in the camp yells to him that he’s left his jacket, so he runs back in, signs back in, and gets his jacket. Then he walks back out and the Irish guards don’t catch it.
Technically, he’s under no honorable obligation to return because he didn’t sign out. He’s legally “escaped”. In the movie, he returns to London and the Brit government agrees to return him to the camp.
When I saw the movie, I thought it was just Hollywood BS, but was very surprised when I did some research.
Typically military. The BS is real and the real BS. ;-)
And maybe the Irish guards didn't care.