Gerry Adams will have a lot to talk about in Washington

Adams will meet with the State Department, Irish American leaders and the White House during his visit.

Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams will have lots to talk about during his upcoming visit to Washington which was announced this week.

Adams will meet with the State Department, Irish American leaders and the White House during his visit, which comes on the heels of a blatant attempt to scupper confidence in the process by arresting him.

He knows better than anyone that crises in the Irish peace process play out under American eyes, and the last one was no exception.

Having invested a huge amount in the Clinton era in securing the peace process, it is heartening to note that America remains involved.

Arguably it was the startled American reaction and the strong warnings from here that awoke the Irish and British governments to the ramifications of a major breakdown.

The Irish government had grown inattentive, a result of the effectiveness of the peace process, and, regarding Sinn Fein as the electoral enemy, it was slow to react.

So too was British Prime Minister David Cameron in whose name the keystone cops of the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) blundered into the Boston College tapes fiasco.

They will have learned that the fringes on both sides, the securocrats within the British system and the Republican rejectionists such as those who managed the Boston College tapes, will make common cause to bring down the process.

That they did not on this occasion is due in part to the U.S. government's strong reaction.

Adams will need to hammer home the need for America to remain vigilant after a period where attention slackened on the Irish issue.

Peace negotiator Senator George Mitchell, who should have shared the Nobel Prize for his work, once warned that the real work for peace was most vulnerable well after the deal was signed rather than in the immediate aftermath.

Opponents of the peace process have made it clear they will continue their unholy alliance and oppose it at every turn. Vigilance is the watchword for the Irish peace process from America. Too much has been accomplished to let the angels of division and a return to conflict succeed.