Sunday, June 6, 2010

Israel really appears to have shot itself in the foot with this storming of an aid ship to Gaza. Demonstrations have been taking place everywhere and Turkey, who until fairly recently has been a friend if not an ally of Israel is incensed by it, the Turkish Foreign Minister calling it ‘murder by state.’ If that is the case how does Turkey excuse its treatment of the Kurds? Although I personally can’t understand rabid nationalism, if Iraq gave up a little of its territory, and Turkey did likewise surely the formation of a Kurdistan would being peace to the area. But no, Turkey won’t give an inch, just as Israel won’t give an inch. Just as Hammas won’t give an inch and just as the Basques and the Maoists in India won’t give an inch and so it goes on and on. Sad really as more and more people are killed for a cause.
Turkey, instead of owning up to it, is still trying to make excuses for the massacre of the Serbs early last century. They weren’t very kind either to the Anatolian Greeks but what the hell, that is all in the past and there is nothing can be done about it now except to own up and say, well that is how it was. I don’t think an apology is necessary. I don’t go for all this apologising for the past, for example as far as slavery is concerned. People demanding Britain and America apologise for the slave trade are really whistling in the wind. They tend to forget, or ignore the fact, that, horrible as it was, Africans and Arabs were also involved in it but we don’t hear any voices raised against them. Why not? Particularly in view of the fact that in some parts of the Dark Continent slavery of a kind still exists. Might as well suggest the Greeks and Romans apologise for their slaves or the Spaniards for their galleys.
But will the Germans ever forget or stop having to apologise for the holocaust? All those deaths had nothing to do with today’s generation but they are not allowed to forget it. I’m not suggesting they should but in some ways this being reminded of it at every turn doesn’t seem quite right anymore. There are museums and memorials to those who perished at the hands of the Nazis but it seems they proliferate even now so many years later. The latest is a man in Berlin laying what he calks stumbling blocks, - blocks that stand proud of the pavement’s surface with a brass plate on which is engraved the name of someone who died in a concentration camp.
Apartheid was a blot on the world and it too has its museums and memorials but isn’t it time to heal wounds? Surely, or there will never be peace in this world.

1 comment:

Lewis said...

Good blog, Glyn.
Great Britain was the first sovereign state in the history of the world to abolish slavery. Other West European countries followed. It still flourishes in parts of Africa and, of course, in some Arab states. Yet the UK and the USA are the ones always called upon to apologize. Shouldn't there be a movement to THANK Great Britain rather than to condemn it?