martes, 23 de febrero de 2010

Dear Mr. Brown

Gordon Brown PM
10 Downing Street
London SW1A 2AA

Dear Mr. Brown,

In view of the ongoing so called 'diplomatic escalade' between your Government and my own, that is, Argentina's, I've decided to dedicate you a few lines, so as to state my position on this particular issue and to remind you of several items you seem to have forgotten.

I should start where it is most important today, the armed conflict that took place almost 28 years ago. For 6 years before April 2nd 1982, the country had been ruled by a military dictatorship that kidnapped, tortured, dissapeared, and claimed the lives of thousands of their own people. With complete disregard of all previous licit diplomatic work, and with the only purpose of remaining in power, the military Junta decided to send a Task Force and set an Argentine government in the Falkland Islands –I won't quarrel with any 'patriot' over a name– for the first time in 149 years. That was monstruous, imbecile, irresponsible and coward. Just like all the actions taken by the Junta.

Conscript soldiers, who had been trained by Armed Forces whose only real conflict hypothesis since 1870 had been the control of social unrest, were sent to a territory that's only a couple of thousand miles from the South Pole without proper winter clothing nor surviving equipment. Badly led and demoralised by their own superiors' stupidity, they starved for 74 days and even then, they picked up their rifles and fought with dignity for a cause they firmly believed in, despite the political use of it. During the battle for Mount Longdon, Brigadier Julian Thompson said: "We couldn't believe that these teenagers disguised as soldiers were causing us to suffer so many losses."

After that battle, elements from 3 Para commited several war crimes, specifically execution of surrendered enemies. The families of the executed still await Justice.

But that's enough for the war. It's time I remind you how it all began. Fishing rights. That's why when Captain David Jewett arrived in the islands in 1820, he read a statement in English to all American and British fishers and seal hunters who were there without permission of the Argentine Government. March 1982 was signed by a very similar episode involving a whaling factory and a small detachment of Argentine marines.

Now the problem seems to be over oiling rights. But something has changed in the History between us. With all our difficulties, our democracy has just turned 26. And may I remark that in the many times of turmoil we've lived since December 10 1983, any of us has ever thought that democracy was a part of the problem. Our Armed Forces are completely subordinated to civilian power –rather than economic power as they were before– and they faced a restructuration process towards active participation in maintenance of stability throughout the world, as part of UN forces. And we still stand as the only country that put its own criminals in a civilian Court. In fact, we continue to do so.

On the other hand, right now Great Britain has soldiers in Iraq –"a war that should have never been authorized and should have never been waged"– and Afghanistan, which has already been stormed by men wearing red coats in 1839, 1878 and 1919. This seems to be a British military syndrome: you invade countries you've already invaded before. Burma, for instance, which lost its sovereignity not to its actual military dictators, but to British invaders in 1823, 1852 and finally in 1885. Iraq itself suffered a British Mandate starting after World War I –and only finished after a large concession over it's oil–, during which Arthur 'Bomber' Harris raided civilians from the air by all means possible: carpet-bombing, poisonous gas and delayed action bombs. Even today's allies like the United States and France have been repeatedly invaded by British troops: the US fired the first bullet for independence in 1775 only to do it all over again in 1812, and France was England's preferred enemy at least since the Middle Age, times in which a Scot like you couldn't have become Prime Minister for two reasons: because you are a Scot, and because there were no Prime Ministers back then.

Argentina is not an exception. After the invasions of 1806 and 1807, Royal Navy ships set a blockade on the port of Buenos Aires in 1848, and not to mention, of course, the seizure of the Falkland Islands by Captain John James Onslow in 1833. In spite of this, Argentina proved a true friend of the British people in its hour of need: during the Blitz, Argentines collected money to pay for two squadrons comprised of Mosquitos and the long-famed Supermarine Spitfires. Argentines of Anglo descent joined the battle against Hitler, and others whose blood had nothing to do with Albion such as Raúl Casares and Ricardo Moreno, also went on to fight for freedom and democracy alongside Britons. During those days of fear, many found shelter at the Argentine Embassy in London, which was the only foreign legation that remained open throughout the war, after Ambassador Miguel Ángel Cárcano said his famous quote: "As long as the King and Queen stay in London, I will too". That was our international relations' finest hour.

Why does your Government, Prime Minister Brown, recall the ghost of militarization over this 'diplomatic escalade'? Is it that oil is a bussiness too lucrative as to maintain peace over this poverty-striken part of the world? Is that why the British government, that honours its worst genocidal History in today's disgusting wars of Iraq and Afghanistan, needs Argentina to be once again considered the 'bad guys'? Is it because the large majority of the British people won't support another international illegal action, considering they already don't support this two wars? Is that why you have to sell them a lie, just like your predecessor Tony Blair? Or is it that it is an electoral year and your opponent David Cameron seems to be performing better in polls?

Please Mr. Brown, if you care for the British people living in the Falklands, I respectfully ask you to clarify my concerns. They too deserve to know what all this is really about.

Best regards,

St. Fatelius

PS. I must say I totally agree with the Mail on Sunday's article, she does have an Old Plastic Face.

Periodismo al Margen (del Diccionario)

desbastar. ‘Quitar las partes más bastas [a algo]’: «Cuando quiera colocar una piedra y no asiente bien, desbaste o labre un poco la superficie» (Lesur Albañilería [Méx. 1991]); ‘eliminar la tosquedad o rudeza [de alguien]’: «¿Tú has leído a Proust? ¿No? ¿Nunca? Estás todavía por desbastar» (Rojas Hidalgo [Esp. 1980]). No debe confundirse con devastar (‘destruir’; → devastar). Son incorrectas y deben evitarse las formas desvastar y debastar.

devastar. ‘Destruir completamente’: «Los bombardeos aliados devastaban la ciudad» (Volpi Klingsor [Méx. 1999]). No debe confundirse con desbastar (‘quitar lo basto’; → desbastar). Son incorrectas y deben evitarse las formas debastar y desvastar.

[La Mañana de Córdoba 23/02/2010 - Juan Manuel Cid: "Luis Juez desbastó Defensa Civil"]

jueves, 11 de febrero de 2010

Alguien lo Dijo

"Asombrada, he podido observar que, en recientes apariciones públicas, De la Sota, principalmente en el sur cordobés (ya en indisimulable campaña electoral), recibió aplausos, más aplausos que cuestionamientos. Y la pregunta es: ¿qué aplauden los cordobeses?

El fracaso de la irresponsable y marketinera reducción del 30 por ciento del impuesto inmobiliario, con el evidente impacto en la prestación de servicios básicos; el creciente desarrollo del juego con la imparable instalación de los slots, que en algunas ciudades del interior funcionan en el microcentro y la sospechosa participación de funcionarios de primera línea en la empresa que los explota, y la asociación de la política con los negocios que todos sabemos existe y se ha visto potenciada en los últimos años son algunas de las cuestiones que una sociedad celosa y fiel custodia de los bienes públicos estaría reprochando, y pidiendo rendición de cuentas a los responsables.

¿Cómo se puede entender el comportamiento y la actitud de una sociedad que es muy crítica en las charlas de café o en las sobremesas familiares, pero al momento de interpelar en serio a los funcionarios, responde con aplausos? ¿Qué aplauden los cordobeses?"

- Dip Nac Griselda Baldata
ARI Córdoba