In 1845, a parasite, a fungus, destroyed potato crops in northern Europe. Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany have been hit hard, as has France. But in Ireland alone the effects are most dramatic, with one in a million deaths or one in eight people. On this island which was colonized by Great Britain during the XVI e And XVII e For centuries, almost all exploitable land was in the hands of a handful of landowners loyal to the British Crown, while most of the local population survived in miserable conditions.
At that time only a third of the Irish population lived on potatoes. Seven years of famine will kill one million people. Two million Irish people will migrate.
Partners or day laborers, most Irish peasants congregate with their families in slums, houses made of dry mud. Only the popular tuber that grows easily in the humid plains of Ireland guarantees a minimum subsistence. So, when it comes to fungi, the poor are quick to face famine and its continuing communicable diseases: typhus, the flu, typhoid … the insurgency is looming ahead of the little help the British government has agreed to provide. But to suppress the rebel movements, London knew it could count on its island forces, which numbered from 15,000 in 1843 to 29,000 in 1847.
Of course, Prime Minister Robert Peel is setting up relief teams, low-cost grain distribution and public works sites. These emergency measures were effective only temporarily and kept Ireland in a downward spiral. After all, they are quickly edited down in the name of liberal principles in practice. By providing solidarity with charities, British leaders at the time saw, for some, this terrible famine as an “offering” opportunity to eliminate the weak and modernize Irish agriculture. A documentary that sheds light on the deep inhumanity of “Loiches-Fire” in the economy and teaches us about the origins of Irish independence.
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