Ahern shakes IA confidence in Sinn Fein?

Niall O’Dowd believes that Ahern’s attack on Sinn Fein is problematic for the party, especially in Irish America:

The reason Sinn Féin is worried is clear. Bertie Ahern is the only figure who comes near in stature to Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams among Irish American leaders, so when he speaks in such critical terms it has a major impact on the dynamic. Ahern’s dedicated work over the years on the peace process and his ‘get along manner’ have ensured he is a popular figure in Washington and elsewhere. The Irish government’s position in effect, is the touchstone for most Irish American politicians. When Ahern turned his fire on Sinn Féin he created a lot of puzzlement and confusion among Irish American leaders.

  • cgmoron

    The bottom line is this. If Adams and Mc Guinness can not bring the republican movement with them they should step aside. Throughout the process they have under delivered. If there is to be a split let there be one. It is now time to show there commitment to the process and for one time take a risk. Sadly i feel that they have no desire to.

  • James

    “Bertie Ahern is the only figure who comes near in stature to Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams among Irish American leaders”

    Irish American leaders and comes near are the operative phrases here. Add to that the subtext that these leaders are amongst the few in this nation who actually give a damn who is on the reviewing stand at the official New York St. Patrick’s Day Parade. (Leave it to the gays, lesbians and straights not in the graces of the AOH to form up the provisional parade.)

    That power must stem from his ability to make a Merc appear whenever the Irish Caucus comes to Dublin because it sure as hell isn’t apparent to anyone else.

    Consider the West Coast, for instance, leaving out other significant pockets like Chicago, Butte and New Orleans. We are as far removed from the ghetto Irish American politics of the East Coast and still stay on the continent. Sure we have plastic paddy pubs named The 32 Counties but few can put a name to the grinning idiot handing the bowl of shamrocks to Bush or Clinton once a year. Most would wonder why make such a big thing about a salad, isn’t the Irish thing really watching the bubbles in Guinness?

    Now when the Adams road show hits the states, everyone now knows who the talking head is. The edgier the background, the more the draw is: If it bleeds, it leads.

    If anyone cares, the crux O’Dowd’s article is:

    It’s business as usual.

  • PaddyCanuck

    Moron:
    “The bottom line is this. If Adams and Mc Guinness can not bring the republican movement with them they should step aside. Throughout the process they have under delivered”

    Clearly Sinn Feins growing electorate does not think that they have underdelivered, as witnessed by gain after gain in election after election.

    And it is exactly that electorate that demands that they do not step aside.

    And if you would really welcome a split, I suggest you move to Iraq or take a time capusule back 20 years in time.

  • New Yorker

    Irish Americans I know and speak to in business, the professions and at universities, mostly in greater NY but some in other parts of the country, never cared for SF policies, their leaders and their followers. Don’t forget there are roughly 40million Irish Americans, a great many with graduate degrees and high net worth. I think many in Ireland do not realize that this group is the vast majority of Irish Americans. SF is a disgrace to us. We have no problem believing they are nothing but a criminal operation; we know the history of the mafia. If the people of NI do not rid themselves of this plague on their house, I doubt you will see much inward investment from the US into NI.