During 1984, President Reagan embarked on a four day state visit to Ireland.
This was the period when IRA paramilitary maneuvers were at their zenith. Bombs continued to explode in mainland Britain, including one in Brighton, which nearly killed Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Northern Ireland - and Belfast in particular - was practically a war-zone.
As a statesman, Reagan publicly condemned the violence, expressed support for the New Ireland Forum (which was going to bring about peace until Mrs Thatcher equally publicly insulted Irish Taoiseach Garrett FitzGerald), but ultimately stated quite firmly that the USA would not interfere with the conflict.
It was a statement which must have been heard with incredulity in the higher echelons of the British government; and wry smiles throughout republican Ulster.
Just in case anyone else hadn't quite caught up with the plot, the reality was made stark later in the year. The US Department of Justice won a court battle to officially name the IRA as 'foreign principles', in other words allies worthy of assistance.
For decades, fund-raising amongst the American public had been the primary source of finance for the IRA. All those descendants of the Great Hunger's migration were more than willing to put their hands in their pockets to continue the great fight.
The USA was where Michael Collins sold all of those bonds to finance the new Irish Republic in the 1920s. (And it was the first foreign nation to accept Eire as an independent state.)
Now one more Famine descendant made it a downright obligation. That legal battle forced the Irish Northern Aid Committee (NORAID) - a US body - to openly fund the IRA. That bomb which nearly took out Mrs Thatcher was paid for in America.
Thus the legacy of the Great Hunger went on.