The Sniper

1. Read this short story: The Sniper by Liam O’Flaherty

2. Please comment on the author‘s point of view. Note that I am referring to the opinion, attitude, purpose and viewpoint of Mr. O’Flaherty as opposed to the POV of the narrator in the story. This story first appeared in 1923 in the London publication The New Leader. O’Flaherty was living in London at the time. Do you think the fact that O’Flaherty was not in Ireland during the Civil War affected his POV?

3. Also, this is a dramatization of The Sniper from You Tube:

4. Can anyone tell me the meaning of his bumper sticker 26 + 6 = 1 ?


40 thoughts on “The Sniper

  1. I liked the way it was written. It definitly broght you into the story a bit more but in general i like the point of veiw of the story to. Snippers in the wars would lie in wait watching there enemies for the right moment to kill. The way this was written was the reader was watching the snipper. Normally you wouldnt think twice about how the snipper in the story is like but in this it really showed how bad the war also was. In the story theres this young man who would probably still be in school who’s job is to kill people. In the story it een said he had deep thoughtful eyes, the eyes that have been used to seeing death. That really says something about how horrible the war was when a young boy has become used to seeing death. I also liked the surprise twist at the end, it made the story seem more sad.

  2. The story was pretty interesting and gave us a glimpse of life during the war. From the authors point of view this shows that the war was something that nobody wanted to fight and it turned people within their families against each other. The author suggests that the war turned many people against one another and by writing this he wanted to show everyone what the war was doing to some of the people. The author might have been living at London at the time but this shows he had a very good viewpoint of what life was like either from stories he had heard or a previous war he had been in. The bumper sticker 21+6=1 represents the 26 southern counties of Ireland plus the 6 northern counties equal a unified Irish nation.

  3. The Sniper by Liam O’Flaherty is the perfect glimpse into the results of the war/ fight for independence. The war turned family and friends against eachother, it displays the war’s overall effects. And in terms of the 26+6=1, it represents the 26 counties plus the 6 northern counties which equals one unified, independant irish nation.

  4. The story was very captivating and really gave you a good perspective of what life was like durring war. I think the authors point of writing this story was to show the horrible things war does to people and their countries. The author seems to be very against war and the after facts of it. I think Liam O’Flaherty not being in Ireland had some affect on his point of view because he didn’t get a chance to see the war close up. But the horrible things he writes about war in this story reveals he has much understand what really goes on durring war. So even though he wasn’t in Ireland durring the war he seems to have a really close point of view to what someone from Ireland might have. The bumpersticker is a slogan made by supporters of the Irish Republic whos goal is to unify the Irish nation.

  5. I really liked the short story. It showed the reader what it was like to be the sniper in a war. In wars, the snipers would have to wait and be very careful or else they might lose their life. The war made many people turn on their families like Sabina said, and it was a really horrible ending. The war corrupted many lives but like the bumper sticker represents 26+6=1 represents the 26 counties plus the 6 northern counties which equals one unified, independant irish nation, and without the war Ireland might not be independent. What do you think would have happened if the war didn’t happen ?

  6. That story was very intense, and the ending was definitely shocking. Mr. O’Flaherty’s main purpose with writing the short story was to show outsiders what fighting a war in your own country was like, the thought processes of those involved, and how people can be blinded by the adrenaline rush that battles bring to the point where they can be so careless as to kill their own family or friend or fellow citizen. Clearly, Mr. O’Flaherty was opposed to this war/fight. Like everyone else said, the bumper sticker represents the unification of the 26 counties and 6 northern counties of Ireland.

  7. The Sniper showed the point of view from the war from Liam O’Flaherty. Liam, like many others was against the war but had to choice in this decision. The story gave readers an actual feeling and view of what it must have been like to be a sniper and have to be extremely cautious with every move you make because it could cost you your life and may lead to the country’s success or fail. In my opinion, this short story was an effective way to understand this war.

  8. The story written by O’Flaherty was very interesting. It showed what it was like to be sniper and how you had to know what you were doing to be successful. It made me understand more about how it was like to be in a civil war in your country. I thought it was very interesting in how the character was so secretive while being a sniper he very much knew what he was doing. This was a very cool way in learning what it was like during war it showed how careful you had to be to become successful and get what you wanted.

  9. I thought the story was very interesting. It gave great detail which helped picture what it was really like to be a sniper. It would give the enemies great fear because they never knew if there was a sniper around because they would blend in to where they were hiding so well. Also, snipers had plans so they were always prepared and knew exactly what they were doing. The term 26+6=1 represents the 26 counties plus the 6 northern counties which equals one unified, independant irish nation.

  10. 26+6=1 represents the 26 colonies of Ireland plus the 6 northern Irish colonies uniting to equal one independant nation. As for the Sniper story, it is a very accurate representation of the Irish fight for independence. It shows how even relatives could be on different sides of the battle, people didn’t know who they were shooting. They were just killing to get their point across. War is a very bad way to solve problems but in the end it sometimes is necassary. What do you guys this about war being necassary or not?

  11. Even though the author wasn’t living in Ireland at the time he still was able to capture the mood of being in war. A point of view that the author showed was that war reduces human beings into mere objects. Everyone is a target no matter who you are and nothing matters, not even your name. He refrains from naming any of the characters which shows that this was one of his views. Another view was that war has absolutely no boundaries. Whether you are a male or a female, old or young, or even family, nothing stops you. Even the IRA sniper unwittingly shot and killed his brother. This ended up being a compelling narrative. And for the bumper sticker, 26 + 6= 1, it refers to the 26 southern counties plus the 6 northern counties equals one unified Ireland. That’s since the northern counties aren’t part of Ireland because they belong to Britain still.

  12. I enjoyed reading the story. It gave clear and descriptive information on the authors point of view. His emotions were expressed throughout the story he was sad, because of the fact that he killed his brother. He was happy when he killed his enemy. It was diffrent from the dramatization.

  13. I enjoyed reading this story. It gave clear and descriptive information from the authors point of view. Emotions were expressed throughout the story. He was shocked because of the fact that he killed his brother. He was happy to know that he killed his enemy.The story was diffrent from the dramatization therefore the story gave more information.

  14. The Sniper by Liam O’Flaherty is a short story about the perils of war, and an accurate representation of Ireland’s fight for independence. His point of view was that war is awful and that when there’s war, people change. They become killers that just end the lives of others and dont care who they kill as long as in the end they are alive. In this story the sniper on the roof goes through a lot of trouble to kill the enemy sniper on the opposite roof, and he finally does kill him but when he goes up to the body he finds that its his brother. The 26+6=1 bumper sticker means the 6 northern irish counties + the 26 southern irish counties=1 unified irish nation.

  15. The author of “the Sniper” shows what war was really like for young boys. They were drafted and forced to learn and get used to killing. In this story the sniper lays in his hiding spot waiting for the perfect moment to shoot. He was also under the influence of alcohol which didn’t really help his concentration. Even though Liam O’Flherty wasn’t in Ireland he was able to write this story in great detail describing a sniper at work. The purpose was to really grasp the reader’s attention and help to understand what it was like at that time.
    Based off Mr. O’Flaherty’s point of veiw, I could tell that the life of a sniper in war was dark and hard. I noticed it was also confusing and hard to trust anyone who had a gun. Your first instinct when being shot at is to shoot back, which could end badly. The ending of the story was surprising yet I could understand how the sniper made that mistake, becuase on top of not being fully concentrated he followed is learned instinct to kill.

  16. This story is to remind people how terrible the war can really be. It especially civil war, it shows how it can tore families and friends apart. The author was very descriptive, which made for an easier/better reading. O’Flaherty showed that being a sniper wasnt an easy job, there are a lot of things that can go wrong while bieng a sniper. The ending just goes to show how war can effect everyone, and destroy peoples lives.

    -Matt A.

  17. Even though O’Flaherty was living in London he wrote about the raging civil war in Ireland. This very well affects how he wrote the story, most of what he heard about was from the news/newspaper and rumors from what people were saying.All of these could be unreliable resources because of propaganda. Also, he could have wrote this story based upon prior knowledge of war, this shows that war at this time never changes. The authors opinion of the war could be described as that no one is safe during the war. The sniper snipes someone that was unarmed and defenseless. he could have let her go and live but since she was involved with the enemy she was consider the enemy. It also shows that Ireland was deep in trouble because they were forced to recuit young teens and teach them to be blood thirsty. Like everyone else said it also shows that war could tear Ireland into two parts and even tear family apart.

  18. 26+6=1 means the 26 countries plus the 6 northern colonies= one unified country of Ireland. I agree with what other people said, which is that war changes people and makes them do just about anything to survive (even if it’s killing your own brother). O’Leary’s message is that war is a bad thing and that you should watch your back when your a sniper because you never know if you’ll get sniped unlike using a machine gun when you see it coming.

  19. this story like everyon said is to reminds of how bad, terrible and gruesome war is and can shows how war can tear apart family friends relatives anything. it shows how much of a powerful force it is. and the bumper sticker 26+6=1 means the 26 irish countries plus the 6 northern countties not owned by ireland make ONE great unified Ireland.

  20. The short story “The Sniper” gives you a perspective of how a sniper’s life was like. The story explains how the sniper was hiding on a roof top oerlooking his enemy. His plan was working for the most part, until the enemy came and wounded him. This shows that no matter whose side your on or where you are during a war, it is always dangerous. Liam O’Flaherty wanted to show that a sniper could also be in danger. As for the bumper sticker, 26+6=1, it means the 26 southern counties plus the 6 northern counties (which wasn’t considered Irish land) equals one unified Irish nation.

  21. Liam O’Flaherty illustrates the aftermath of war and the fight for independence that went on. The reason for writing this story was to show how war effects all aspects of life including families, friends, countries, government and culture. It shows the destructions caused by war in your country. The 26+6=1 represents the 26 colonies of Ireland and the 6 northern Irish colonies added together makes one independent nation.

  22. This story was written in the point of view of one of the snipers. They would lay there until they got a good angle of their enemy and they would shoot. The character in the story was wounded. The ware was brutal and affected all aspects of the snipers’ lives. IN the picture below 26 represents the number of free states in Ireland. The 6 is the number that Britain still owned. And the 1 is saying that if you keep them all together then you will have one unified Ireland.

  23. In Liam O’Flaherty’s short story, “The Sniper” his goal was to let young boys know that fighting in a war negatively affects your life. You are forced to learn how to kill correctly. Families and friends are torn apart from each other. Especially when you are in a civil war because people within one country are all against each other.
    The bumper sticker 26+6=1 stands for the 26 colonies in Ireland plus the 6 northern colonies in Ireland equals one nation.

  24. The Sniper by Liam O’Flaherty was very well writen. It showed the life of a sniper. the snipers plan hiding on a rooftop was working out until the enemy wounded him. War was crazy and had an affect on everyone who was a part of it. the phrase 26 +6 = 1 means the 26 independent irish nations plus the 6 unindependent nations equal 1 happy independent irish state.

  25. This story shows what individuals did to fight for their independence. Liam O’Flaherty’s story gives us an idea what was happening during the time. It goes to prove that the fight for independence wasn’t always effective. O’Flaherty informs us what it was like to be a sniper with this detailed piece. Also, this story shows how awful fighting could have been, as the sniper killed his own brother.
    The 26+6=1 represents the 26 colonies of Ireland plus the six northern Irish colonies uniting to equal one independent Irish nation.

  26. This showed how bad it was in the war and what the life of a sniper was like. O’Flaherty shows what life as sniper was like. It wasn’t always easy being a sniper but it had to be done. This shows how tough it was. The picture below represents 26 Irish colonies plus 6 northern colonies eaquals one independent nation.

  27. In this story, the Sniper, the authors point of view is showing how real and devastating war really is and how everyone is your enemy when your on the verge of death. He also shows how he couldn’t recognize his brother and how his brother couldn’t recognize him. It shows that you should always fight for indepedence and what you believe in. The picture of the license playe shows the 26 independent nations + the 6 other nations under british rule= one independent nation.

  28. I really enjoyed watching this short Video/story “The Sniper” and the ways it expressed the diffuculties of being a young boy in war for indepence for your country. It goes to show that the war should not have been fought by the youth. The men expressed in the war are animal like meaning that it is a kill or be aspect of life. I liked the twist at the end of the man perhaps killing his brother, or a man fighting with him not against him.

  29. The story by Liam O’Flaherty and video were both very interesting. I liked how it was the sniper’s brother as the enemy sniper. It just shows how horrible the war for independence was. Those two should’ve never been put up to this job. Killing people alone is wrong especially when you’re at a young age like those two. The 26 stands for the 26 southern Irish colonies, the 6 stands for the 6 northern ones owned by…(i have no idea), and 1 is all of Ireland as one nation.

  30. The way the story is written is very creative. The story really remind and shows people how terrible war can really be. Playing video games killing people might be fun but in a real war you cant get shot five times and still be alive. The story showed that being a sniper wasn’t easy and there are a lot of things that can go wrong while being a sniper. The ending shows the affects of war on everyone, and how it destroys peoples lives.

  31. In the story, The snipper by Laim O’Flaherty. The author shows how bad the war really was. Being in war when you’re still a kid is a scary experience. The fact that this boy was already used to death was even scarier. After he killed the snipper across the street he said he hated the war, himself, and everybody else. This shows how the war can affect people negitively. When he realizes the snipper was his brother, it shows how the war can be blinding. He is told to kill, kill the enemy. However, on the battlefield it’s hard to tell who the enemy is. This also shows how fighting is a bad thing. Family is always supposed to be there for you, but the war turned him against his brother.

    Also on the trucks bumper sticker, 26 + 6 = 1 means 26 independent nations + the 6 other nations under british rule= one independent nation.

  32. “The Sniper” was an interesting, suspenseful story. It really showed how brutal the war could be and you never knew who your enemies were. Liam O’Flaherty added a real twist when the person that was shot and killed was the sniper’s brother. Being a sniped involves stealth and courage. Your live was constantly on the line. And the bumper sticker means the 26 southern Irish colonies and the 6 northern colonies forming Ireland as one nation.

  33. I think this story was very interesting because it put you in the war. The way it was written the author wanted you to know what it was like to be a sniper back then and even just to of fought in the war, any war for that matter. He didn’t want you to just think about how it felt to be fighting but he actually wanted you to feel it.

  34. the bumper sticker 26 +6 = 1 means 26 countries + 6 northern countries are put together and unified as one. The sniper story shows wars hardships. Hardships can make people crazy like the sniper. war also makes people turn on each other like the sniper did.

  35. “The Sniper” story by Liam O’Flaherty was telling the reader how risky and dangerous it was to be an a war. The sniper was a student so that means he was young. I dont think he realized how dangerous the situation he was in was until there he was surrounded and there was no way out. The 26+6=1 represents the 26 colonies of Ireland plus the six northern Irish colonies uniting to equal one independent Irish nation.

  36. Liam O’Flaherty’s story, “The Sniper”, was showing what it was like to be a sniper in the war. It shows that there was always danger and you were never safe. Even though something may be dangerous though, you have to fight for what you believe in.
    The bumper sticker 26+6=1, stands for the 26 colonies in Ireland plus the 6 northern colonies in Ireland equaling one nation.

  37. i thought the video was interesting , he talked about what it was like to be a sniper and how dangerous it is to be in the war. you have to stand up for what you believe in…

  38. The Sniper by Liam O’Flaherty was telling us how risky and how
    dangerous guns can be and how they are ment to be for the wars .

    26+1=1 means that he stood up for what he belived in ,

  39. The Sniper by Liam O’ Flaherty was telling us what it’s like and feels like to be in a war.Also,the bumper sticker 26 +6 = 1 means 26 countries + 6 northern countries are put together and unified as one. He said to kill, kill the enemy. but on the battle field it’s kinda hard to tell who the enemy is. But it’s also a lesson to teach and a lesson to be learned.

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