Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan wore a bullet proof vest when walking in the St. Patrick’s Parade in New York for fear he would be shot at by IRA sympathizers.
Moynihan had objected to 1983 Grand Marshal Michael Flannery, who was head of Irish Northern Aid, seen as an IRA support group and aroused the ire of many Irish American Noraid supporters.
He also feared that the IRA would supply explosives to Islamic terrorists after the first World Trade Center bombing in 1993.
The revelations are in the recent book of his letters edited by Steven Weisman “Daniel Patrick Moynihan a portrait in letters of an American visionary” and published by Public Affairs.
He also stated that he feared that the IRA on “some deranged impulse” would bomb a New York site. On that occasion he was writing to Mayor David DInkins in 1993 after the first attack on the World Trade Center.
“As you know Islamic terrorists and the IRA terrorists are in close contact and have been for decades..mu yconcern is that the IRA will now get involved with providing semtex to Islamic terrorists...you can never tell with such people, but you always expect the worst.’
In a letter to Cardinal O’Connor of New York written in July 1988 Moynihan stated due to his criticism of the IRA “I, for one, am now required to march in body armor, which takes some of the spring out of one’s step.”
Moynihan called Republican sympathisers a “mob... who “obscenely jeered” at then Cardinal Cooke after he refused to allow Noraid leader Michael Flannery to enter the cathedral in 1983.
In his letter to O’Connor, Moynihan also asked that he consider sending all money raised by the St.Patrick’s Parade to Project Children, an organization that helped Catholic and Protestant children have vacations in America together.
He revealed how columnist Jimmy Breslin had referred to the pew where Moynihan sat after refusing to march in the Michael Flannery- led parade as “The Gypo Nolan Pew” after the notorious informer in the Liam O’ Flahery play.