Sinn Fein Snubbed? -- March 20, 2005

ByABC News

  -- A weekly feature on This Week.

As usual, Gerry Adams, leader of the legal political arm of the Irish Republican Army, was in Washington for St. Patrick's Day. To protest recent IRA killings and crimes, Adams was denied his usual meetings with President Bush and top Democrats like Ted Kennedy and Hillary Clinton. Here's his response.

Gerry Adams: "I don't feel snubbed. I have a sense of who I am and what I represent and what I'm trying to do. And, I know it's quite difficult at times.

"I was invited to the White House, and that was symbolically important. And if the disinvite of the Irish parties meant a stepping back from the process by the Bush administration, I'd be very concerned. But it doesn't. This isn't an ego trip.

"I don't come here to do anything other than seek support for a cause which is about bringing peace and justice to small island nation.

"The family of Robert McCartney deserve to get exactly what they are seeking, which is those people in court and held accountable the murder of Robert McCartney, which is those people in court to be held accountable for that killing.

"Opponents of Sinn Fein will seize upon five or six articulate, good-looking smart Irish women who are making this case and are fighting for justice for their brother. And they will use that to try to tar us and Sinn Fein with the smear of criminalization. And the reason I can face up to this so calmly is because it isn't true.

"The IRA didn't kill her brother, and the police service have made that very, very clear. Some rogue individual, IRA volunteers, who have been drummed out of that organization, killed their brother, and it was wrong. Those who killed their brother should be in court and made accountable for their actions.

"When that happens, I still have to keep working. The peace process will still have to be rebuilt. Human rights will still have to be sorted out and embedded in our society. The political institutions will have to be put together. The armed groups have to be dealt with. I want to create conditions where there is no IRA."

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart:

Stewart: "The murder and subsequent offer put Gerry Adams, the leader of the political arm Sinn Fein is in an awkward position. The issue prompted one of America's famous Irish Americans to cancel a planned meeting with Adams."

Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass. [on tape]: "I indicated in my statement that I personally believe Gerry Adams wants to see the IRA disbanded but I think there is a time when to hold them and time to fold them."

Stewart: "There you have it, decades of religious turmoil boiled down to a Kenny Rogers lyric."

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart:

Lewis Black, "Daily Show" commentator: "Thank God we live in a country where anyone can buy guns, and I mean anyone. A Congressional investigation revealed last year nearly 50 terror suspects on federal watch lists were legally allowed to purchase firearms. And as NRA president Wayne LaPierre told CBS, it's shameful, shameful that those suspects right to bear arms is being threatened."

Reporter [on tape]: "If it's good enough for the FBI to put them on a terrorist watch list, why isn't it good enough for the NRA to not sell them a gun?"

Wayne LaPierre, NRA president [on tape]: "Because what is a watch list?"

Black: "It's a list of suspected terrorists we're watching -- in this case, watching buy guns!"

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