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no need to apologise, you didnt hurt my feelings

Reader comment on item: The Middle East's Tribal Affliction
in response to reader comment: sorry to hurt your feelings

Submitted by bos (United Kingdom), Jan 28, 2008 at 09:51

Flippant and poor reasoning rarely do.

While I must admit to knowing relatively little about Basque culture and History, I am instinctively inclined to question a comparison between a culture that has survived and been shaped by various levels of suppression for two millenia and a xenophobic brutality that has survived over a millenium of being the 'suppressing' culture. Further, the tiny number of active militants and the relatively small death toll (tiny for a 40 year conflict) would suggest an erroneous comparison. As I suspect a distinct inclination to assumption, I must ask that you dont infer any support for Basque terrorism from my comments.

With regard to the Irish, you are identifying a clan society that has not been a politically relevant cultural phenomenon since the battle of Kinsale. Further, you are confusing its most recent period of relevance with its own mythology. Tales such as Tain Bo Cuailange are a mythological representation of an historical period when no society on earth had escaped basic protectionist tribalism. In fact if you look comprehensively at Irish tribal/clan mythology (such as tales regarding the De danaan) you can see an early recognition that while tribal protectionism is the way society at that time survives, it is a regretable reality, and not a point of pride and honour.

You clearly have misconceptions regarding Irish Geography and cultural distictions between the 'high' and 'low' lands, in fact its possible your confusing it with Scotland, but even then you would be betraying a misunderstanding of its roots and evolution.

With regard to the 'brutal' irish terrror campaign, it should always be recognised that conflict by its very nature is brutal, this does not ever excuse the actions of those engaged in conflict, especially there 'warcrimes' or sheer criminal murders, but it is nonetheless important to remember when judging a culture by its conduct in conflict, the fact that it engaged in brutality tells us precious little, the true indicators of its restraint or rational inclination towards compromise lie in comparison with others.

You need go no further than its unionist opponents (a primarily immigrant community) to see much greater, deliberate and consistent brutality. You could also examine the actions of the occupying garrisons from o'sullivans trek, through the year of the french and its sixty years of reprisals to the easter rising, the tan war and indeed the most recent troubles to see a history of much less restrained brutality.

Your knowledge of Chechen society/culture and its evolution in recent years also appears to be profoundly lacking, I suggest you read 'Crying Wolf' by Vanora Bennet as an enjoyable and informative starting point and choose your own path from there if your interest is tweeked

Your attempted patronisation betrays an assumption regarding my ethnic allegiances, if you make another I am sure it will be just as wrong, and just as tiresome. Your not on this sight defending islamism or attacking its enemies so I had hoped to engage in friendly debate on a subject of interest, but i have gone off the idea now.


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