"Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons." Bertrand Russell

Friday, March 25, 2005

My My Myers

I realise ardent supporters of everything American find it difficult to criticise their present policy in Iraq, but in his continual criticism of the anti-war movement Kevin Myers has again plumbed for the tried and tested formula of using the views of the some of the most questionable critics of the war as a way to slander all those who resist US/UK propaganda.

The courage shown by the Iraqi people during the recent elections was obvious, risking their very lives for the opportunity to claim the independence long (and continually) opposed by the west. Which should make the fact that the very thing they voted for, the removal of coalition forces, has been universally ignored. However, why is this courage such a shock, is Mr. Myers unaware of the Iraqi peoples attempted revolt in the aftermath of Gulf War one, resulting in their brutal crushing, which was in no small part a result of US in-action. Their survival in the face of years of sanctions which took the lives of hundreds of thousands of their children. Their present struggle aginst occupation, torture and the threat of death from several fronts.

The "real democracy taking root in Iraq" is unfortunately not in the foreseeable future. What we can expect, if the past is any indication, is a government that will pander to US interests. Until then we can take for granted, a familiar theme, "insurgents targeting Iraqis," US forces killing Iraqis and more Iraqis dying.

It is a shame that Corporal Ian Malone's "clear notion of what was right and wrong, and what was freedom and what was not" is not made more evident in the mainstream media. Without holding our government and their policies to account, we not only give up our right to democracy, but also lose the respect of those that risk their lives depending on whether we're at war with Eastasia or Eurasia.


An Irishman's diary

If those nice people in the American Embassy wanted to know about the real face of Sinn Féin, they should have attended the anti-US demonstration in the centre of Dublin last weekend, writes Kevin Myers

It was a trip to Doolallyville, 1968. That splendid fellow Cllr Larry O'Toole declared: "We will rid the world of tyrants like Bush and Blair. . .Comrades, it is a very important today to send out a clear message to the Dublin government: Shannon must be closed off to US warplanes". As long as international solidarity remained, "imperialism is doomed."

Firstly, to deconstruct Shinner-speak, that term "Dublin government", rather than "the Government", is not accidental: it was probably only by the greatest restraint that he did not spittingly refer to it as a parcel of Free State lackeys. Because whatever they say in public - where they spout bare-faced lies - and no matter how agreeable they seem when being colonically irrigated by various governments, Shinners detest those who hold office in Leinster House. They regard all Irish governments as traitorous inheritors of a usurped authority. The only Dáil they genuinely recognise is that of 1918; the only tradition they honour is the armed one that stands in unbroken continuity from the 1916 Rising.

Moreover, I like the word "tyrants" to describe Bush and Blair. The former was re-elected, fairly and squarely, last year; the latter will probably - alas, because I despise the man - be re-elected this spring. Tyrants don't do elections - or if they do, they win them the way that Saddam Hussein or Ill Kill Him or whatever his name in North Korea is: they win them by polling 99 per cent, ad infinitum, until replaced by a son, who does better than daddy by securing 99.99 per cent.


The Irish Times