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Arthur Griffith
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World Leader
    (March 31, 1872-August 12, 1922)
    Born in Dublin, Ireland
    Advocate for Irish independence
    Co-founded the newspaper 'United Irishman' (1910)
    Founding member of Sinn Fein (1905)
    Chaired the Irish delegation negotiating the Anglo-Irish Treaty establishing the Irish Free State (1921)
    President of the Irish Republic (January-August, 1922)
    He praised the Russian czars and Kaiser Wilhelm II as morally superior to Britain.
    His position that Ireland and Britain should form a dual monarchy (similar to Austria-Hungary) led to repeated clashes with backers of a republic, such as Eamon de Valera.
    He wrote, 'I have in former years often declared that the Three Evil Influences of the century were the Pirate, the Freemason, and the Jew.'
    He wrote anti-semitic articles about the Dreyfus affair even after Alfred Dreyfus was pardoned.
    He supported a boycott in Limerick of businesses owned by Jews.
    He was born with misshapen feet.
    Despite his anti-semitic writing, he was good friends with Jewish attorney Michael Noyk, who defended IRA and Sinn Fein members in court.
    He was arrested by the British after the Easter Rebellion even though he had not taken part in it (1916).
    The Earl of Birkenhead, one of the British negotiators of the Anglo-Irish treaty, said, 'A braver man than Arthur Griffith I never met.'

Credit: C. Fishel

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