|The Advocate, April 29, 1916|
|The Chicago Daily Tribune, April 27, 1916|
Casement had worked with Henry Stanley (the guy famous for saying "Dr. Livingston, I presume") in the Congo (Zaire). He documented human rights abuses, up to and including murder, by the private army created in the Congo by Belgian King Leopold II to force the locals to work in the King's rubber plantations. He investigated similar abuses in Peru of the Putumayo Indians, and was knighted by the British crown in 1911 for his efforts.
Retiring from the British consular service in 1913, Casement was a founder of the Irish Volunteers, and met with German diplomats at the outbreak of World War I to funnel German arms to Ireland. 900 Mauser rifles made it to the rebels in July, 1914, but the British were able to intercept the April, 1916 shipment and sink the ship.
Suffering from malaria, a disease he was never able to completely shake from his days in the Congo, Casement was arrested in County Kerry and imprisoned in the Tower of London. A petition urging clemency was circulated by such luminaries of the time as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and George Bernard Shaw; to counter this, the British released Casement's "Black Diaries," detailing a series of sexual encounters with young men in 1903, 1910 and 1911.
Whether genuine or forged, the Black Diaries essentially quashed support for Casement among Irish and American Catholics. Casement was convicted of treason, stripped of his knighthood, and hanged on August 3, 1916. Ireland now has a military airfield named in Casement's honor, even though he wouldn't have been allowed to march in the Ancient Order of Hibernians St. Patrick's Day Parade until very recently.
|The Duluth Herald, April 29, 1916|
|The Advocate, May 5, 1916|