North Korea

North Korea
The always bombastic and unpredictable North Koreans go hysterical again. This time the country is prepared to "go to war" with South Korea because that country is playing loudspeakers directed at North Korean territory. A headline from a UK paper reads, "More than 50 North Korea submarines 'leave their bases' as war talks with South continue "

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Remembrances and Reconciliation

Very long standing tensions remembered between Serbs and Kosovars

Grudges and injustices are not easily forgotten. Some shouldn't, others by festering simply prolong the inability to progress. The "remembering" to everyone's disadvantage can be seen in Northern Island, where yearly parades and commemorations keep the 300-400 year old animosity between Catholics and Protestants alive. In a more lethal manifestation, the Serbs and Kosovars will not drop injustices that occurred in the 1300s, the continually stoked outrage having now triggered World War I, and part of the bitter Balkan war of the early 1990s.

Turkey and Armenia are stepping feebly along a more productive path of restoring relations. The long bitter wound (charged as genocide) from the 1915-17 conflict where the Turkish empire crushed the subject land of Armenia from moving towards independence, remains a potent barrier.

Tiny Armenia to the east of modern day Turkey - once were both part of the Ottoman Empire

A most profound and positive example of reconciliation is between Germany and Israel after the holocaust caused by the Nazis from 1938-1945. In 1950, Hermann Maas became the first German to be officially invited to Israel. In 1952, the Prime Minister of Israel David Ben Gurion and the Chancellor of West Germany Konrad Adenauer signed an emotional reparations agreement. Over the years - through 2007 - Germany has paid 25 billion euros in reparations to the Israeli state and individual Israeli holocaust survivors. West Germany and Israel established diplomatic relations in 1965, and since then, mutual state visits regularly occur.

Would that more nations study the steps taken between these two nations rather than nursing grievances from the past. Here current leaders Netanyahu and Merkel discuss an item

But to come full circle, as Israel gained its independence in 1948, a new stage was set for unending conflict. Palestinians living in and among Jewish settlers were told to leave by neighboring Arab states, who were anticipating a successful, brief, full scale attack on the new country, thereby driving Jews into the sea.

When the unthinkable occurred, and Israelis beat back the attacks, the displaced Palestinians had nowhere to go and were placed in refugee camps set up by the defeated Arab nations. Instead of these countries (Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, and Iran) assimilating their brothers, the leadership encouraged the new refugees to nurture their grievances, as well as make promises that soon another attempt would be made to drive the Jews to the sea. Several unsuccessful attempts later, millions of new refugee descendants over the course of 60 + years, have become a force of restlessness and resentment beyond any Arab coalition's ability to control (think Hamas, Hezbollah, Gaza Strip ...).

The point of all this? Another buried lead? It is the nurtured violent grievance towards Danish cartoonists who disrespected the Prophet Muhammad in 2005. As 2010 comes to a close, Danish police have arrested five jihadists intent on seeking murderous revenge towards the cartoonists and the newspaper business who published them.

Another terror attempt

From the BBC, "five suspected Islamist militants have been arrested for planning a gun attack at the Copenhagen offices of a Danish newspaper that printed cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad in 2005, police say. The men intended to burst into the Jyllands-Posten office and kill as many people as possible ..."

The small Baltic nation of Denmark

With all that, let's pointedly enjoy a positive reminder, that of traditional Danish food based around the natural bounty of this tiny land, with fresh fish from the seas and rivers, and famous pork and dairy products from its farms. (Havarti cheese should be on everyone's grocery list.)

The Danish countryside

Danish havarti cheese on bread - pretty simple fare

1 comment:

Teatree said...

Teatree here. Not wanting to state points without examples, I'll just add this link regarding Palestinians in their refugee camps - an article from the BBC titled, "Palestinian plight in southern Lebanon refugee camps"