Tuesday, October 10, 2006


Rebel Hearts Betrayed

Having just finished reading Rebel Hearts by Kevin Toolis, and just begun reading Betrayed by Linda Diebel, the question occurred, just what is it about Angles and Anglos that drives their insatiable aggression? Is there such a thing as inherent English colonial attitude, or is it simply an accident of historical circumstances that propelled these Norman-Saxons with the gift that goes on conquering?

When Toolis wrote his book about the internal struggles of the Irish Republican Army on the verge of another truce with the occupying British troops in 1994, the Zapatistas' struggle Diebel reports on in her book about the Mexican human rights lawyer Digna Ochoa had recently erupted into the world's consciousness. Rebelling against David Rockefeller and Bill Clinton's North American Free Trade Agreement that was running the indigenous of Mexico off their communal lands in order for American corporations to strip their forests and supplant their sustainable agriculture with genetically-modified monoculture, the Indians of Chiapas and Guerrero--some of whom were defended by Ochoa--were just beginning this phase of resistance to colonialism while the indigenous of Ulster were hoping to bring their's to a peaceful conclusion.

Although the North American Indian wars are only half as old as the war in Ireland, the international solidarity recatalyzed by the indigenous movement in the Americas has provoked reflection on how over the last few centuries advantages have been gained and maintained throughout the world, as well as consideration of how we might go about making amends. The October 2001 assassination of Digna Ochoa in Mexico City, like the 1989 murder of Northern Ireland human rights attorney Patrick Finucane in Belfast, signalled just how far the inheritors of privilege are willing to go to protect their ill-gotten gains.


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