I have been doing a fair bit of research on Ireland and the First World War as part of my biography on Martin O’Meara VC, Australia’s only Irish-born Victoria Cross recipient of the First World War. Ireland was, of course, an integral part of the British Empire during the war, just as Australia was.
Ireland’s experiences during the war are largely overshadowed the ongoing struggle for home rule and later independence, and particularly by the Easter Uprising of 1916 which saw the British Army putting down an insurrection by Irishmen in Dublin … at the same time that Irishmen were fighting alongside English, Welsh, Scottish, Australia, New Zealand, Canadian (and later American) troops on the Western Front in Belgium and France.
Thousands of Irishmen also served at Gallipoli, in a campaign that Australians (and New Zealanders) have traditionally claimed as their own.
RTE, the Irish national broadcaster, has created an interesting site that explores the contribution of the Irish at Gallipoli.