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March 15, 2005
Sinn Fin: Well, They're Our Thugs, Though

Gerry Adams finds himself in the unusual position of facing hostility from Irish-American groups and politicians that have normally supported Sinn Fin, especially after the Good Friday accord that brought Northern Ireland to an unsteady cease-fire. Two major crimes committed by their IRA partners, a murder and a spectacular armed robbery, have stripped the blinders off of naive Irish descendants here about the general nature of today's IRA and the role of Adams as a Mafia-style mouthpiece. Adams attempted to get ahead of American public opinion and salvage some of his fundraising efforts (the kind that doesn't involve robbing armored cars) by branding the IRA murderers of Robert McCartney "thugs":

Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams has condemned the killing of a Northern Ireland man and blasted the "rogue" members of the Irish Republican Army blamed for the man's death.

The January slaying of Robert McCartney in a fight outside a Belfast pub has sparked widespread criticism and calls from both sides of the Atlantic for the IRA to disband.

Adams, whose party is the political ally of the IRA, said the perpetrators have tarnished the Irish republican movement and should be "man enough" to turn themselves in.

"The people -- apart from Robert McCartney's immediate family -- who've been most angry, frustrated by this man's death, are people like myself," Adams told the Council on Foreign Relations on Monday.

If Adams really meant what he said, then he should be "man enough" to turn them in himself. Why wait for the killers to confess if he and the IRA know who they are, which they apparently do? After all, they offered -- by their own admission -- to shoot those responsible. If they don't want to do that, why not encourage the other people in the bar to come forward and tell police what they know? The witnesses understand the crime-syndicate mentality that grips both sides of the gangster war in Northern Ireland. They operate under Irish omerta, a code of silence for which violation brings immediate retribution to one's self and one's family.

It seems that the killers aren't the only "thugs" in the IRA and its Sinn Fin partnership. We know that because a two Sinn Fin political candidates happened to be in the bar at the time of McCartney's murder, and claim not to have seen a thing:

The IRA-linked Sinn Fein, which has already suspended seven members linked to McCartney's death in January but identified none of them, admitted that a Sinn Fein candidate for May's election to Belfast City Council was in the bar at the time of the killing.

The candidate, 23-year-old Deirdre Hargey, issued a statement Monday. "I did not witness the fracas in the bar, or the incident outside the bar," she said.

On Saturday, Sinn Fein said a candidate in Northern Ireland's 2003 legislative elections, Cora Groogan, 23, was also in the bar. Groogan issued a statement claiming she heard "commotion" but saw nothing.

The IRA has admitted that two of its members slashed McCartney's neck and stomach after he intervened in a dispute at the pub January 30. The 33-year-old man died hours later.

Two SF politicians just happened to be in the bar at the same time a man got his neck and stomach slashed wide open and they didn't see anything? Doesn't that seem just too much of a coincidence to anyone? Imagine if your local Congressman and mayor happened to be in a bar when a fight broke out, and members of their political party just happened to have killed the man who tried to break it up. Perhaps these men may have even been there to provide security for the politicians. Regardless of what American political party was involved, do you think for a moment that Americans would sit still while that political party stonewalled a police investigation?

Of course not; it would be a national disgrace and everyone involved in stonewalling would be run out of town faster than one can say, "I wish Strom would have won in 1948." That's the point that Americans need to understand. Sinn Fin (in Northern Ireland) isn't a political party; it's a political front for a terrorist organization, and a pretty damned inept one at that. Sticking money in their pockets amounts to the same thing as donating to Hamas and Hezbollah. We Americans of Irish descent need to remember that when the stirring anthems of Irish freedom start playing and the Guinness begins to flow.

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at March 15, 2005 7:55 AM

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