Re: Northern Ireland...Again. [and Again!--Part II]

Karine Maucourt ([email protected])
Sun, 05 Jul 1998 20:44 +0200 (MET)

                        Hi Liz and all U2 lovers !

    I begin to think this thread funny, more funny than Danny Best thread at
least ! ;-)

At 20:23 03/07/1998 -0700, Liz wrote:
>Where were we? Oh yeah:
>[I wrote]:
>>>It is to Hume's credit that he did have to suffer a lot of particularly
>>>nasty personal abuse for his willingness to talk and cooperate with the
>>>Republican Movement, and managed to (thus far) tough it out and prove
>>>his detractors wrong. Right now, he's being daft because there's
>>>another *election* coming up (June 25th), and the SDLP tends to get
>>>pretty daffy when they're in a race.
>[Karine replied]:
> > Hoo hoo !!! Hume is daft ???? Tell me why, please ?
>"Daffy", not "daft"...they get a bit silly when there are votes to be got,
>that's all. Like making rather absolutist statements before the election,
>the reversing it after the election. You know: Before an election, a
>vote for Sinn Fein is a vote for violence, but _after_ the election,
>those same votes are suddenly a vote for "peace". Howdeydodat? as we
>Yanks would say! I know, I know--politics as usual...

        Sorry ! So, i needed your help. I failed to find "daffy" in my
dictionary. Maybe i'll need to buy an "whole-english" dictionary in Dublin
as i'll go there in 2 weeks...

>I have a lot of bad ideas! >:)

        HOOOOOOOOOOOO !!!!!!!!! ;-D

>>>No, Trimble has been dragged along by the process, all the while doing
>>>anything he can to stomp it out.
> > We don't get the same analize about his behaviour....
>I'm not the only person who sees Trimble's situation this way--

        I hope. ;-) And i know another US wireling who agree with you.

>the power
>struggles and peculiar dynamics of Unionist politics is far too complex to
>delve into in a single post, so I have to be a bit sketchy here. But a
>lot of people see Trimble as having jumped into the peace process with an
>eye to one-upping the Paisleyites, only to find himself pulled along by a
>political process too strong to stop.
>Nor has it
>worked (at least so far) in excluding Republicans from the new Assembly,

       I think it was because IRA is still armed. But i think Trimble is
wrong. And do you know what was his attitude about the armed Loyalists
groups ? Did he rejected them too ?

>There's never been a better atmosphere for a Unionist leader to make a
>clean break with the hard-liners like Ian Paisley...

        I agree with this :-)

>If talking is the way forward--and it
>should be--then _everyone_ needs to talk. All the pretty words about
>"parity of esteem" etc. mean nothing when a Member of Parliament can't
>find it within himself to go talk to his own constituents, presumably (?)
>because _their_ elected local rep is a former prisoner?

        Ask this to the Loyalists. They surely know why. Because i don't see
why it's a problem to talk with a former prisoner.(See below)

>Odd, since
>Trimble had no qualms about working with the UDP and PUP, whose reps to
>the peace talks were...ex-prisoners, albeit loyalist ex-prisoners!

        I think there are ex-prisoners in every party. And it's not
surprising because it's like that in every country which knows a peace-process.

>We need to be wise, and not fall for the notion that Trimble has been to
>the forefront of the peace process, least of all because Bono held his
>hand at the Waterfront Hall Concert!

  You're saying Trimble needed to be supported by Bono to work for peace ?????

>Most Republicans I know assume U2
>were more naive than anything in doing the concert,

        I also think this concert was a little mistake for U2. I mean, they
didn't need to implicate themselves in that. But it proves they suffer from
this situation. Anyways, did you know what think the others NI about this
show ? I mean, other than Republicans. It can be very interesting.

>and don't see it
>having been anything wrong--if it helps to nudge Trimble and his
>supporters along the road to genuine peace work, all the better.
>Flawed, perhaps, but well-meant. But we'll need to see some actions to
>match the rhetoric in the coming days and weeks; the man needs to get over
>it, and talk with the residents' groups, talk with Sinn Fein, talk with
>whoever wants to talk.

        I also agree with this :-))

>> The difference is i don't see at all Trimble behaviour like you.
>>IMHO (please don't forget this) you're blind if you don't see the
>>difference between Trimble and Paisley.
>Sure, there are differences--but not enough to allow Trimble to be re-cast
>as a major peacenik, you know!

        I don't need him to be a major, just to be there.

>It pays to be cautious--I wrote that a few days before the Assembly
>elections--and the UUP didn't do very well at all in the election. The
>DUP clawed their way back to third place, and the UUP's overall vote
>dropped. For a few hours there, the SDLP was clocking in as the biggest
>party in the North! I fear that the UUP's getting a kicking may force
>them towards taking a harder line on just about everything, for fear of
>losing wavering supporters to the DUP and UK-UP.

        OK ! I better understand now. :-D

>> Very good, thanks :-D Hopefully, we're here less one-sided than
>>some Irish-Americans...;-))
>I'm not an "Irish-American". There is some (Protestant) Irish background
>in my family tree; and I'm half Quebecois on my mother's side. I have no
>specific "ethnic" identification that influences my politics.

        When i said Irish-Americans, i meant all US people who have Irish
roots, whatever the religion. BTW, maybe on your mother's side you're a
little my cousin...

>I'm not discussing the audience, I'm discussing the very selective attacks
>made on American-based supporters of Irish reunification, while the same
>people don't object to "trendy" political causes (Tibet, South Africa,
>etc.) run by organizations far, far from the country in question. It's
>just another one of those "communist dupes" propaganda ploys, designed to
>discredit and censor any voices that don't support the status quo.

        Here we haven't this kind of problem. It's why i didn't understand
you. You surely know in french people there are more catholics than
protestants and maybe you also know we usually think religion has nothing to
do with politic. I mean, we don't take attention to people's religion. Maybe
it's why we haven't this kind of propaganda here. I mean, noone attacks us
because of this or because of anything else related to religion. The only
one thing which is attacked here by almost everybody is nationalism. I mean,
nationalism in european meaning (i mean, as something which leads to
nazisme) and not in the NI sense. Do you know here nationalism is considered
as extremism and republicanism as moderation. Interesting to see how meaning
of some words can change according to the country...

>>>Why should you be embarassed for my sake?
> > Why not ?
>Well, whatever floats your boat, I guess...

        Sorry, can you be clearer ? I don't understand.

>Of course I can "stand" other opinions--why are you so biased as to assume
>that I don't? Why do you automatically jump to that sort of conclusion?

        It wasn't my feeling at the beginning of our discussion ( some
months ago). Maybe it's because english isn't my native language (as said to
me another wireling). You seem to be less agressive since a few messages and
it made me happy.

>Could it be're the one who's got the blinkers on here?
>You know, every day, when I log onto my email, I get news pumped to me
>>from all sources, in Ireland, the US, Britain, and sometimes even further
>afield. Just today, I got to read through statements and editorial pieces
>>from various newspapers, Irish and loyalist political parties, and
>organizations, ranging from Sinn Fein to the Orange Order! In another
>email discussion list, I spend most of my time arguing with "dissident"
>republicans and leftists who want to see the Republican Movement smashed
>and the peace process destroyed. Frankly, I deal with more diverse
>opinions every day than many residents in Ireland, north or south.

        I just wanted to say you didn't seem to be like that at the
beginning (as i've said above).

>But if
>you feel more comfortable holding to your wee stereotype of ignorant,
>"one-sided" Irish-Americans, be my guest.

        No ! I want the reality, nothing less...As i've said to another US
wireling, i always thought my position isn't so far from yours, but i felt
you so agressive before than i wasn't sure at all about this. But don't
forget you make some others people feel you as a one-sided person. And i
still think you're less open-minded than me. Just my feelings...

>>>Don't patronize me, OK?
>> Where is your sense of humour ? ;-))
>I shot it and buried it in the back yard.

        Something never to do ! Never ! Please, bring it back !

>>>I've talked with more people over the past two
>>>decades about this issue than I can count! From every corner of
>>>Ireland, America, Canada, England, Scotland, you name it--I don't preach
>>>to the converted (frankly, some of the converted annoy me to no end....)
>>>And you seem to forget that very few people actually hear any
>>>alternative to the line put forth by the British government through the
>>>media--sometimes people need to be challenged and made to think by
>>>hearing something *different* from time to time!
>> Maybe you also need to hear something different...
>What is there that I've somehow missed?

        Now i know you talk with everybody, you don't deserve this quote
exactly. Just think sometimes you wrote like someone who doesn't listen to
anyone else who disagree with you. I really felt this. Remember, you called
a North-Irish an unionist because he disagreed with you. This made me feel
you was excessive.

>All you've done is cluck your
>tongue and waggle your finger at me, but never seem capable of telling us
>all what is so "different" that I have to hear or see or read? Name a
>source; give us a URL or author or title;

        You already have another interesting site, Zeek's one for instance
and if you want more, i remember this one:
<>. It's easy to remember the URL. Maybe
you already know this one. I can't say more because you never gave me your
sources. But i always thought you didn't lie to me. About authors, my last
and best interesting accounts are from Robert McLiam Wilson, Malachi
O'Doherty, Carlo Gebler, Glenn Patterson and little accounts from NI
musicians: Brendan Perry, Sean O'Neill, Neil Hannon, Perry Blake. They are
in a french weekly cultural magazine named Les Inrockuptibles released May
20-26 this year. I didn't speak about these sources before because they're
in french. Maybe i'm wrong, i always consider foreigners can't speak my
language unless they said it to me first. You know, sometimes i receive
messages from foreigners who says Salut Karine instead of Hi Karine (french
translation), so i can think these people can speak french a little as
least. If you want these articles, i can write them but please use
alta-Vista for translation, i haven't time enough to translate them in
english. Obviously, i have my newspapers and a french magazine "Courrier
International" who publishes sometimes articles from US-Irish-NI-British
newspapers. I suppose you already know them. And i suppose you alreacy know
sites of political parties in NI.

        BTW, i already asked to you if you want my sources and you never
replied about this. Maybe you didn't see my offers...

>I've only been following and
>studying the situation for 20 years, so I'd like to know what I've missed!

        Sometimes, time isn't the most important thing, you know...BTW, did
you read books about this conflict ?

        PS: Is your job related to this conflict ? I mean are you journalist
or something like that ? Just curious...

        In the name of love and peace


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