Irish American Coalition to House Committee on Foreign Affairs: Hold Hearings Now

ANCIENT ORDER OF HIBERNIANS • BREHON LAW SOCIETY • IRISH AMERICAN UNITY CONFERENCE

March 21, 2013

Honorable Chris Smith
House of Representatives
2373 RHOB
Washington, D. C. 20515

Dear Representative Smith:

We have sent a number of letters to you in the past 9 months regarding our concerns for Britain’s misuse of the U.S.-U.K. Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty for a political fishing expedition in the Irish archives of Boston College. Although we have had several conversations with Mark Milosch on this matter and the issue of Britain’s undermining of the ‘justice’ provisions of the Good Friday Agreement, we have yet to receive a response to our request. We have recently learned that you may be considering the conduct of a hearing on such matters. This would be a welcome circumstance which we would like to know more about.

As we have noted in previous correspondence and commentary both mailed and faxed to your offices, there are four issues relating to the Agreement that a congressional hearing might shed some light on. They are:

  • England’s failure to provide complete records to the Irish government on the British Army role in the Dublin-Monaghan bombings;
  • Britain’s refusal to provide a public hearing on the murder of attorney Patrick Finucane;
  • the British corruption of the HET process which was to review the killing of over 800 Catholics; and
  • the continued internment of Marian Price and the abuse of her human rights and corruption of law to keep her in custody.

Not content with shredding these provisions for which they have not been held to account, Her Majesty’s government has sought Attorney General Holder’s assistance in enforcing subpoenas requiring documents from the Irish archives of Boston College. This mischievous initiative is prompted by the same security forces that killed Patrick Finucane and Rosemary Nelson.

American involvement in the crafting of the Irish peace pact is gradually being eroded and a mockery is being made of the tireless efforts of two Presidents’ to insure that U.S. resources helped to tangibly express that commitment.

We believe these topics should be the focus of a full House Foreign Affairs Committee and formally conducted with invitations to both the United Kingdom and the Irish Republic as well as to organizations like ours to attend and/or give testimony. A suitable time frame to allow for travel would also be appropriate.

To this end we are copying Chairman Royce and Ranking Minority Member Eliot Engel as well the Chairman of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe Senator Benjamin Cardin with whom you also serve. We would like to sit down to further discuss not only the merits of such an investigation but the logistics of insuring that all voices are heard and that the testimony and documentation is provided in full in the Congressional Record.

Thank you for your past efforts to expose some of the injustices of the conflict in Ireland. We look forward to working with you to conduct the most inclusive and productive inquiry into the 1998 Belfast Agreement and American support.

Sincerely,

Mr. Brendan Moore
National President
Ancient Order of Hibernians

Mr. Robert Dunne, Esq.
President
Brehon Law Society

Mr. Thomas J. Burke Jr. Esq.
National President
Irish American Unity Conference