<span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'>12 Reasons Cromwell is a HERO</span>
Oliver Cromwell is my hero, so here's some things he did that are great:
1. He substantially won the Civil War, when the rest of the Parliamentary commanders - posh, half-baked lords - would have lost it.
2. He set up the New Model Army which has to be one of the best armies the world has ever known - merciless and motivated fighters.
3. He could be ruthless when needed (eg against the Levellers, and at Drogheda and Wexford). Nowadays, in our politically-correct, wishy-washy liberal society, everybody goes 'ooo no, what a nasty man - he is the 'British Stalin'' at this. But AT THE TIME that was what people responded to (compare what was happening in France and Spain at the same time). The result was that England and Ireland HAD PEACE, because of Cromwell. Only someone of immense strength and imposing character could have FORCED such a warlike situation into peace.
4. He absolutely wopped the Scots AND the Irish - always a crowd-pleaser.
5. He pushed through the execution of the king, thus getting rid of a TOTAL TYRANT and establishing in English politics that a king CANNOT be absolute. Thus we owe our democracy to him - he is sometimes called 'the daddy of democracy'. How's about that for a hero?.
6. He threw out the old corrupt Rump Parliament in 1653. Everybody agrees that they deserved it. He really tried to establish a 'righteous' parliament in its place (eg the Barebone's Parliament).
7. He refused the crown when it was offered him - he genuinely did not want power for power's sake - just to get ENGLAND safely through this troubled period. Decent guy.
8. He abolished bear-baiting, and punished drunkenness. Perhaps he went too far for our tastes nowadays (he also abolished dancing, Christmas and the theatre) but this is what godly people wanted in those days. He was just trying to make people be good by the lights of the time.
9. He allowed Jews to return to start living in England, and allowed them religious toleration. He allowed everybody else to believe what they wanted - in their own homes - this was religious toleration way ahead of its time.
10. He built up the British navy - this was the real start of England's naval supremacy.
11. He captured Jamaica from the Spanish - and thus began the British Empire.
12. He was a good, decent family man, who enjoyed a joke and was kind to his children, and he always spent the day in prayer before he did any really outrageous thing. When he had lords to a meal, he would let them eat for so long - after which he would bang a drum, at which the ordinary soldiers were allowed to come in and take anything they wanted off the table.
Depends on your perspective,If he had never gone to Ireland there is a case for hero.Many respect his warts and all style character . His acts in Ireland where he demanded unconditional surrender will blight his name forever.As result of brutal invasion,sorry crusades, 1/4 of Irish population decimated,thousands of Irish women and children pushed onto basic slavery,(Jamaican sugar plantations). 40,000 forced by survival into conscription to overseas armies , 100,000's forced to leave the country,famine due to scorched ground policy.This invasion was a reaction from disposed catholics killing 4000 protestants and a further 8000 dying(uk history books) after being forced into exile from there plantations.There is still a lot of propaganda and emotive debate about this relating to statistics.Cromwell acts brought about an attempted reservation for irish behind the Shannon,the transference of wealth from catholic to protestant led to famine .Cromwell leads to very emotive debates over acts and statistics of dead.There are still debates about this and about the population of Ireland pre famine 8-10 million post famine 3 million. The argument "sure that was the times" is usually taken by the colonisers the victors .Below is a link ,though i dont believe Ireland would have won this war, i found it amusing that a battle led by a " politician " rather than a general with disastrous results was Irelands last attempt in open battle.To the victors go the spoils of recording history. copy and paste below for RTE documentary.