Paul Williams: Gerry's moral high ground is crumbling beneath him
Published 03/10/2013 | 05:00
Gerry Adams has been perched comfortably on the high moral ground in Dail Eireann since his election as a TD for Louth. From his coveted vantage point, above his adoring comrades in Sinn Fein, he never misses an opportunity to lecture the political establishment about morality and the truth.
But in Gerry's sense of self-belief – or self-delusion – there is no place for questions about his own unquestionable morality or attitude to the truth.
The former IRA godfather, who could be the Tanaiste after the next general election, easily swats away awkward questions about the IRA's campaign of murder and mayhem, confusing his inquisitors with obfuscation and meaningless guff.
However, the conviction of Gerry's paedophile brother Liam for the rape of his daughter Aine from the time she was four, could precipitate the undoing of his breathtaking charade.
And, since the conviction of his brother in Belfast Crown Court, the glare of that spotlight has moved on to the only man in Ireland who seems to be believe that he was never a Provo boss.
The trial of his brother has thrown up many very awkward issues for the Sinn Fein leader which, to paraphrase his own famous quote, will not be going away any time soon ... you know.
Foremost of these is the simple fact that Gerry Adams chose to remain silent for at least 20 years after his brave niece and her mum, Sally, first revealed his brother Liam's sordid secret.
For two decades, the man who claims ownership of the high moral ground of Irish politics, refused to go the police to report a paedophile.
Nor did he do anything to prevent his paedophile brother from working with kids in Belfast or taking an active role in Sinn Fein politics.
In December 2009 the award-winning Belfast-based investigative journalist Chris Moore exposed the story in a special 'Insight' programme on UTV (which is to be repeated tonight).
During the first trial of Liam Adams, in which the jury failed to reach a verdict, Gerry Adams admitted under cross-examination to withholding a vital piece of information in a statement to police about his niece's allegations in 2007.
What he omitted to tell detectives was that his brother Liam had confessed his awful crimes seven years earlier, in 2000.
Chris Moore and his team first began investigating Aine's claims in September 2009 when they approached Gerry Adams with her allegations.
Now, after two trials, it has emerged that the Sinn Fein leader only made a statement to the PSNI concerning his brother's admissions AFTER he was approached by UTV – and knew the story was to be broadcast.
But the revelations of Aine, her mother and her uncle Bob Corrigan in the 'Insight' programme have only served to throw up even more disturbing questions about Adams.
The three reveal their absolute belief that Gerry Adams did everything he could to cover up the truth about Liam Adams and never wanted it to be investigated by police. It wouldn't do his political ambitions any good if it leaked into the public domain.
Aine describes a series of meetings she had with her uncle after she decided to resurrect her original police complaint against her father in 2004.
Gerry Adams, she said, led her on a merry dance.
She told Chris Moore: "I got my eyes opened because when I was going to the meetings it was turning into Liam was the victim. 'Our Liam is sick in the head ... our Liam can't deal with what he did to you ... that's why our Liam is sick in the head now ... our Liam can't cope."
Aine Adams says that she realised that the meetings were being organised in the hope that she would drop her annoying allegations.
She says she told her uncle: "You have failed me again 20 years later (after first telling him about the abuse). I wrote Gerry Adams a letter telling him that I was stopping contact."
Gerry Adams has never sought to challenge the allegations made by his niece or her close relatives in the 'Insight' programme about his role in the scandal. He later appeared on RTE to tell the world that his IRA father had been sexually, physically and emotionally abusive to his large family of children.
Incredibly, he never mentioned this important fact when he was interviewed for the 'Insight' programme.
Now, the man who makes a virtue of holding our Government to account, is faced with the unseemly prospect of finally being forced to account for himself.
The skeletons of so many outrages, including the murder of Jean McConville, which his former comrades said he ordered, are rattling in Gerry's closet. His past has not gone away... you know.