Ireland may lose bond with US if diaspora dies out

Niall O’Dowd: Soon few Irish-Americans will have close family links with Ireland

The idea of the American Irish diaspora, of an unchanging 35 million Americans of Irish descent, is no longer valid. Photograph: Kate Geraghty

The idea of the American Irish diaspora, of an unchanging 35 million Americans of Irish descent, is no longer valid. Photograph: Kate Geraghty

Given the current US immigration climate, there is little doubt we are looking at the end of mass Irish migration to the US almost 175 years after the Famine.

At one point the Irish were pouring in at the rate of 20,000 a month, now a few thousand a year come legally. Legal emigration in any significant numbers is over.

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