What did the Black and Tans achieve? They served no purpose for the British government as they simply failed to stop what the IRA was doing. However, they did succeed in getting the republican cause a great deal of civilian support simply because of their acts – people may not have joined the IRA, but they were supporters of it and gave what financial help they could to the movement. The Black and Tans were pulled out of Ireland in ignominy.
"If a police barracks is burned or if the barracks already occupied is not suitable, then the best house in the locality is to be commandeered, the occupants thrown into the gutter. Let them die there – the more the merrier.
Should the order ("Hands Up") not be immediately obeyed, shoot and shoot with effect. If the persons approaching (a patrol) carry their hands in their pockets, or are in any way suspicious-looking, shoot them down. You may make mistakes occasionally and innocent persons may be shot, but that cannot be helped, and you are bound to get the right parties some time. The more you shoot, the better I will like you, and I assure you no policeman will get into trouble for shooting any man."
Lt. Col. Smyth, June 1920
In the Republic of Ireland a Black and Tan is normally made from a half pint of Smithwick's topped off with Guinness. This version is also sometimes referred to as a "Blacksmith" or a "Light and Bitter". During the summer months stout drinkers may order a black and tan due to its lighter texture. Likewise ale drinkers may order a Smithwick's with a Guinness head. This is an ordinary pint of Smithwick's with the last inch or so topped off with Guinness.
And the loving English feet walked all over us;
And every single night, when me father'd come home tight,
He'd invite the neighbours outside with this chorus:
Oh, come out you Black and Tans;
Come out and fight me like a man;
Show your wife how you won medals down in Flanders;
Tell her how the I.R.A. made you run like hell away
From the green and lovely lanes in Killeshandra.
Come, tell us how you slew
Them ol' Arabs two by two;
Like the Zulus, they had spears and bows and arrows;
How you bravely faced each one,
With your sixteen pounder gun,
And you frightened them poor natives to their marrow.
Come, let us hear you tell
How you slandered great Parnell,
When you thought him well and truly persecuted,
Where are the sneers and jeers
That you bravely let us hear,
When our heroes of sixteen were executed.
The day is coming fast
And the time is here at last,
When each shoneen will be cast aside before us;
And, if there be a need,
Sure my kids will sing "Godspeed!",
With a bar or two of Stephen Behan's chorus.