Posts Tagged 'Queen Elizabeth II'

Gerry Adams and Dealing with Victory

 Come on guys, we won the war, often using decidedly savage methods, but still, it was the right outcome, and after all the other side wasn’t exactly covering itself in glory from a human rights point of view either. And now the losers have accepted the democratic legitimacy of your sovereignty where they live and are actively participating in the autonomous government there. Some of them even talk like they have swallowed the complete works of Jürgen Habermas.

 What more do we expect the losers to do?  “Answer for their crimes before the courts”, you say. Well fine, let’s do that. But the only way that is going to be politically and morally viable is for everyone to answer for everything they did, winners and losers alike.  Otherwise we’ll be making a distinction between good and necessary crimes (ours) and foul and unjustifiable ones (theirs).

“A truth and reconciliation commission, what about that?” Not a bad idea and some kind of process that will recognize the suffering of victims and provide them with reliable information about what happened to them and their family is long overdue.  Again, however, *everyone* would have to fess up to make this work.

But some people are sounding  like they don’t want either of those options. It seems they aren’t satisfied with winning the war and having the losers become one of the guarantors of their sovereignty where they – the losers –  live.  It seems that there are some who want the losers to crawl, to cringe before them and admit that, unlike you and me, they are very bad people indeed.  It isn’t going to happen. It didn’t happen in South Africa or El Salvador, to give just two examples, and won’t happen in Colombia either.

Queen Elizabeth II had the former military head of the campaign to end her rule in part of her kingdom around for dinner the other day.  It’s quite possible that this man personally dispatched soldiers and policemen who had sworn loyalty to her. He certainly instructed others to do so. One of the victims of his campaign was a close relative of hers.

It feels a bit strange to say so but there is no denying it;  on this issue I’m a lot closer to Elizabeth Windsor than to many of my friends, Facebook and otherwise.



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