Ed Moloney was the co-founder of the Boston College Oral History Project on the Northern troubles. He, more than anyone, is the reason Gerry Adams is under investigation for the murder of Jean McConville 42 years ago.
For the project, Moloney chose the harshest anti-peace process Republican critics who hated Adams and his peace strategy to be interviewed. He promised their testimony would not be used until after they were dead. He misled them.
They spilt their bile on Adams, the Sinn Fein leader. But soon as two of the main interviewees died, to the surprise of Boston College, Moloney rushed out a money-making book of the interviews which slammed Adams and first brought about the interest of Northern police force, the PSNI.
Given that background, Moloney wrote a piece that defied logic in the Daily Beast yesterday, a Walter Mitty version of events that can only be described as delusional.
Nowhere in the piece did Moloney identify himself as the founder of the Boston College Oral History Project – and shame on the Daily Beast for not clarifying that.
In his piece, Moloney came up with an explanation for the Adams arrest so convoluted it defies all reason.
Gerry Adams, you see, did it to himself.
The headline reads “Sinn Fein boss Gerry Adams wanted this murder bust.”
Moloney believes he got himself deliberately arrested, gambling that he would beat the rap and the McConville innuendo against him would be ended forever.
Here is what Moloney writes:
“The McConville allegations have been like a monkey on his (Adams’) back for the best part of a decade. His party, Sinn Fein—Irish for “We Ourselves”—is well placed to enter government in Dublin at the next election, but his opponents have a potent weapon to use against him: his alleged role in the disappearance of McConville. He badly needs to throw the monkey off his back, and that explains his extraordinary move in giving himself up to the police.”
One wonders what fevered condition produced that classic pronouncement, especially as Moloney also adds it was the biggest gamble of Adams career.
Bigger than getting an IRA ceasefire?
But wait, there’s more.
Moloney also holds that he is now deeply worried about the peace process after doing his damndest to destroy it and Adams.
“There is much more at stake than just Adams’ freedom and reputation, however. He was the principal architect of the IRA peace strategy; without him the IRA would never have been maneuvered out of violence. If the British put him on trial, his hardline opponents’ accusations of naiveté or selling out will be justified and the peace process will be seriously undermined.”
Yes, seriously undermined, but by who originally Ed? Why not own up?
Moloney notes the American role which he has also been a fierce critic of. But the Daily Beast piece showed a kinder, gentler Ed as he backslides furiously to take the attention off himself.
“The peace process in Northern Ireland is a monument to American diplomacy. Without the efforts of Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, it is doubtful whether a power-sharing government would be in Belfast or whether IRA guns would not only have been silenced but destroyed. The peace process is testimony to the fact that with enough effort, jaw-jaw can prevail over war-war.”
Having done his best to destroy the peace process, he decides to try and fix the blame for the Adams arrest elsewhere.
Moloney first and foremost blames the Obama administration, which is indeed a factor, but it is a little like blaming the play for Lincoln’s assassination.
He writes, “In all of this, the role of the Obama Justice Department has escaped the scrutiny that it deserves. The road to Adams’ arrest began in May 2011, when the DoJ served subpoenas on Boston College on behalf of the British government without conducting due diligence.
“In an affidavit to the Boston District Court justifying the subpoena seeking Price’s interview with the college, U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz cited a Belfast Sunday newspaper report that claimed to have heard Price’s tape admitting her part in McConville’s death.
“But Price never mentioned the McConville killing in her interview for the archive, and a moment’s reflection would have revealed as nonsensical the idea that a Belfast newspaper, the equivalent of a supermarket tabloid in the United States, would be allowed access to such a secret, well-protected archive held by one of the country’s most prestigious colleges. The police in Northern Ireland pulled the wool over Ortiz’s and Attorney General Eric Holder’s eyes, and they did not even notice.”
Moloney concludes, “What a shame that a slipshod approach by the Obama administration to such a crucial issue has put it all at risk.”
No, Ed. The shame is that your hatred for Gerry Adams and the peace process led to the events of the past few days which could put Northern Ireland back on the brink.
Former Northern Ireland Secretary Shaun Woodward warned in The Guardian that the arrest of Adams marks one of the most "tense and potentially quite dangerous" moments in the peace process.
As Adams recently stated, “It is clear that the so-called Boston Oral History Project is an entirely bogus, shoddy and self-serving effort by those involved.
“The idea for this project originated with Paul Bew, an advisor to David Trimble and was taken up by Ed Moloney and Anthony McIntyre, who conducted the interviews. Both are vitriolic critics and opponents of the Sinn Féin peace strategy, of me in particular and of Sinn Féin and its leadership.”
And now the chickens have come home to roost no matter how much Moloney tries to squawk otherwise.