“A part of the compact under which Redmond was elected to the chair limited the power of the newly chosen. He was to be a Chairman, not a leader. That is to say, he was not
to act, except after consultation with the party as a whole: he was not to commit them upon policy. This meant in practice he acted as head of a cabinet, which from 1906 onwards consisted of Mr Dillon, Mr Devlin and Mr.T.P. O’Connor…………….
There was only one instance in which he took action without consultation. But that instance was the most important of all, his speech on the outbreak of war.”
from “JOHN REDMOND’S LAST Years by Stephen Gwynn, 1919. Gwynn was an Irish Party MP until the 1918 Election
In 1914 a great many Liberal MPs did not favour going to War, and Redmond’s speech persuaded them to back the war.
Virtually every war since 1914 has arisen from the chaos produced then.
Scores of millions of people have died world-wide because of his breach of the “compact” under which he was elected Chairman.