Irish Republican News · August 30, 2011
[Irish Republican News]

[Irish Republican News]
Adams subjected to PSNI ‘fishing’ subpoenas

British authorities have broadened their demands for the contents of oral history testimonies dealing with the conflict in Ireland and given to Boston College on the basis of confidentiality.

Boston College has thus far resisted attempts by the U.S. Attorney’s office, acting on behalf of the PSNI, to gain access to the archive, which was compiled on its behalf by journalists Ed Moloney and Anthony McIntyre.

Initial efforts were aimed at securing the testimonies of former IRA Volunteers Brendan Hughes (now deceased) and Dolours Price.

However, new court filings show that federal authorities now want “anything and everything” in the archive related to allegations that Sinn Fein President Gerry Adams was involved in the execution of reputed IRA informer Jean McConville.

Local journalist Kevin Cullen wrote: “At least we now know what this fishing expedition is all about. It’s about using the U.S. government as a pawn in a blatantly political act, an attempt by police in Northern Ireland to certainly embarrass and possibly prosecute the Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams over McConville’s disappearance and murder.”

Although the Boston College archive is wide ranging and includes interviews with unionist paramilitaries, the subpoenas focus solely on the McConville case.

“Not only does this show a selective, politically motivated prosecution taking place, it underscores the seriousness of the threat to the power-sharing government in Northern Ireland, which is the cornerstone of the peace process,” wrote Cullen.

In another article in response to the subpoenas, Moloney and McIntyre wrote that the death of McConville “was largely ignored by the police for the best part of 40 years, and even when Price’s newspaper interview was published in 2010 they did nothing.

“A whole year passed before action was taken. When the police service did move, it was within weeks of Sinn Fein’s remarkable electoral comeback in the general election in the Republic of Ireland.”

They questioned the timing of the investigation, following Mr Adams’s election to the Dublin parliament.

“The stability of the power-sharing government in Belfast could conceivably be threatened by this case. The United States played a huge role in bringing about peace in Northern Ireland; wouldn’t it be ironic if now it played a part in undoing it?”


Meanwhile, Mr Adams has also been the subject of surprise allegations in the memoirs of former senior South African activist and politician Kader Asmal, who died in June of this year.

In his book, Asmal, founder of the Irish Anti-Apartheid Movement, claims Mr Adams provided IRA contacts to carry out a key attack by the military wing of Nelson Mandela’s ANC.

The attack against Sasol, South Africa’s major oil refinery, was carried out with the help of reconnaissance of members of the IRA, according to the memoirs. The refinery was vital to the maintenance of the apartheid state, and the successful attack was of “inestimable” value to the liberation movement, Asmal wrote.

Unlike the Boston College claims, it is considered unlikely that Asmal’s allegations of Mr Adams’s peripheral involvement in the revolution against South Africa’s apartheid regime could be used to bring charges against the Sinn Fein leader in Ireland.

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© 2011 Irish Republican News