With the Northern Ireland Assembly teetering on the brink, there’s just time to highlight two appearances by the Sinn Féin president, Gerry Adams, on RTÉ radio last week. Firstly, on News at One on Wednesday 9th September. Here’s what the RTÉ report notes
Speaking on RTÉ’s News at One, Mr Adams said the IRA, as we understand it to be, is gone and there is no rationale, logic or evidence to suggest there is any organisation in mainstream republicanism, except for Sinn Féin.
He said there is no reason why he would be telling any untruths about the “going away of the IRA”.
[Apart from the one he just outlined? – Ed] As we understand it to be… He returned to that same point in an appearance on Morning Ireland on Friday 11th September. [Some of Adams’ excursions in answering have been omitted for the purposes of clarity]
[Gerry Adams]: There’s only one republican organisation in the field at this time, and that is the organisation that I’m part of, which is Sinn Féin. There’s only one republican leadership, which is the Ard Chomhairle of Sinn Féin, which is duly and transparently elected at our Ard Fheis.
And a key exchange,
Presenter: When everyone else says the Provisional IRA exists, and you say they don’t, is everyone else wrong?
Gerry Adams: Yes. The IRA was not involved in those killings because the IRA is no longer there.
Presenter: There’s a credibility issue here. You say that everybody else is wrong, and that you’re right. But you have denied ever being in the IRA, you’ve denied the IRA in the past murdered Gerry McCabe, you denied the IRA was involved in the Northern Bank robbery, you said the Colombia three in 2001 were studying flora and fauna when they were arrested. But you’re telling the truth this time, yes?
Gerry Adams: Well, first of all, even if I’m wrong, how does the current machinations assist the process of bringing peace and democracy.
How indeed… [Has he told his party he might be wrong? – Ed] Apparently not…
Of course, if he is wrong, again, then the crisis is not contrived, and he will have to explain the relationship between the leadership of the Provisional IRA and that of the other public leadership of his party. But that’s his problem. Not Somebody Else’s…
One final quote [5min 40sec in]
[Gerry Adams]: And people can take whatever position they want on this issue of the IRA…
[Thanks Gerry, I will! – Ed]
It’s not the still-extant Provisional IRA structures that are the immediate cause for concern, although “stupid” questions could, and should, be asked about their ultimate purpose, it’s the involvement of those Provisional IRA ‘structures’ in the events leading up to, and including, the murder of Kevin McGuigan, and the continued denials [of that reality! – Ed] which have followed.