Saturday, March 23, 2002

Anglosphere in action

Why do we always have to make excuses for the Americans and the IRA? The love affair will not stop, no matter how much we wish it to.

The latest person who wishes to misunderstand it is the enormously well intentioned Natalie Solent. She responds to one of my recent articles on the equation of the potato famine with the holocaust:

However, does Mr Goldstein really think that the authors of this course of study have any less hatred for America than for Britain? So long as they are listing an oddly-chosen rag bag of British crimes spanning the last four centuries (to view, try Control F and "British Colonial Policies") then they are full of patriotic anger regarding the treatment of American prisoners in the Revolutionary War. But just wait till next term (semester) when the class does the Indian Wars and see what they say then.

Well, what does the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education actually say on the Indian Wars? Well, not a whole lot really. That is not to say that they weren't listed but that they are listed waaay down the curriculum page:

Review and study genocides and atrocities of the past such as:

African American (slavery)
Native American
Individual communities may choose other areas to study.

So there we are, the Indians are mentioned but between slavery and the Armenian genocide. The Irish get their own billing. An interesting fact is that the blood libel is not just being imposed on the impressionable children of New Jersey, but it is produced by Nebraska and also:

The Illinois, Colorado and Idaho Departments of Education have linked to the Nebraska site, along with the National Archives of the Republic of Ireland, and the Gateway to Educational Materials, (GEM) at Syracuse University.

That's five states, a prestigous university and a neighbouring country. Not bad for an "oddly-chosen rag bag of British crimes". Add to that New York, where:

In 1996, the Governor signed a law making instruction on the mass starvation in Ireland a part of New York State curriculum. New York schools are now required by the Board of Regents to teach courses in patriotism, citizenship and human rights issues, devoting particular attention to the study of genocide, slavery and the Holocaust.

This is not just some sort of leftist inspired post-modernist drivel (although it is that), it is highly dangerous. The Irish Potato famine is becoming the best known "fact" about British history, thanks to an intensive lobbying effort by the Irish-gangster lobby.

We seem to view Irish-American hatred for Britain through rose-tinted spectacles, thinking that they don't really mean it. Look at the Irish in Britain (like - I would hazard a guess - our own Ms Solent), they've managed to see this through British as well as Irish eyes. Yes, they don't like Ian Paisley, but they dislike the IRA more. Even the Irish in the 26 Counties in Rebellion Against the Crown (also known as Eire) the idea of swallowing Ulster, let alone having anything to do with the provos, is entertained only by a minority. If only they knew about Ireland, we reason, they would be more reasonable.

Don't bet on it.

Andrew Dodge has also talked about this matter, where he is admittedly less sanguine about this. However he does share the tendancy to focus on the tenth of the glass that is full rather than the rest that is empty, with this entry on the St Patrick's saga. A number of the firemen in the World Trade Center refused to march in the parade because the marshall is an IRA terrorist.

Isn't the story not the refusal to march, but the honouring of an IRA killer?


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