RE: US Tragedy

From: Scott Chase (
Date: Mon Sep 17 2001 - 23:27:05 BST

  • Next message: Christopher Walker: "Re: US Tragedy"

    Received: by id XAA01498 (8.6.9/5.3[ref] for from; Mon, 17 Sep 2001 23:32:02 +0100
    X-Originating-IP: []
    From: "Scott Chase" <>
    Subject: RE: US Tragedy
    Date: Mon, 17 Sep 2001 18:27:05 -0400
    Content-Type: text/plain; format=flowed
    Message-ID: <>
    X-OriginalArrivalTime: 17 Sep 2001 22:27:06.0194 (UTC) FILETIME=[E1C57320:01C13FC7]
    Precedence: bulk

    >From: Vincent Campbell <>
    >To: "''" <>
    >Subject: RE: US Tragedy
    >Date: Mon, 17 Sep 2001 12:01:19 +0100
    >There is a bit of European attitude that I understand in Kenneth's
    >In Britain where we have spent some 30 years or more under threat of
    >terrorism linked to Northern Ireland, and in European countries that
    >experienced invasion, occupation and devastating bombing during WWII, it
    >seem that the US response to what is an entirely new experience for them,
    >somewhat strange. Some of the British survivors from the towers have
    >commented, very obliquely and not with critical intent, at the response of
    >some to the initial crashes. Experience of bombs in central London meant
    >that many Brits in the towers headed out straight away, whilst it's quite
    >clear that some others didn't move (people apparently often behave in
    >completely unexpected ways in disasters- like not running for exits and so
    >on). The response of the community subsequently in Britain after such
    >attacks tends to be very stoical rather than jingoistic.
    >I don't think we can really criticise or call it childish, given that
    >they've never had this kind of thing before. Pearl Harbour doesn't count,
    >because there was already a World War going on, that the US administration
    >was basically trying to pretend wasn't happening. This time around the
    >incredulity is more genuine- in American terms. Remember, I believe I'm
    >correct in saying that only about 7% of Americans have passports, Bush was
    >mocked for not knowing who the president of Pakistan was when he was
    >for office (I bet he knows his name now), and jokes about Americans
    >routinely mock perceived ignorance of the rest of the world. Most
    >may not have a clue why this has happened to them, even if most of the rest
    >of the world does.
    It was the "infantile" and "childish" quips which irked me. My kneejerk
    reaction would have been to ask how many American "infants" died in the
    European theatre during WWII, not that the US acted alone, which it most
    definitely didn't.

    Yes Britain has had more than its fair share of terrorism to deal with and
    y'all might be hardened by this. Fingers may be pointed at the US about how
    our foreign policy decisions may have played a major role in the generation
    of terrorism, whether our friendship with Israel or our dealings with Afghan
    rebels. The UK may see parallels in how they've dealt with the "Irish
    problem" and "the Troubles".

    The actions of the IRA militants are deplorable, but some of them Ulster
    protestant chaps ain't so great either (what's his name...Paisley?). Are the
    hardcore Unionists/Loyalists/Orangemen/UVF much better than the Nationalist
    republicans? I recall some recent news about attacks on Catholic
    schoolchildren which makes me ill, something not quite as noticeable over
    here in the states. All we usually hear about are the IRA, not realizing
    their antipodes.
    > > ----------
    > > From: Scott Chase
    > > Reply To:
    > > Sent: Sunday, September 16, 2001 12:38 am
    > > To:
    > > Subject: Re: US Tragedy
    > >
    > >
    > >
    > >
    > >
    > > >From: "Kenneth Van Oost" <>
    > > >Reply-To:
    > > >To: <>
    > > >Subject: Re: US Tragedy
    > > >Date: Sat, 15 Sep 2001 21:39:17 +0200
    > > >
    > > >
    > > >----- Original Message -----
    > > >From: Lawrence DeBivort <>
    > > > > Drove past the Pentagon this morning early still smoking badly. How
    > > much
    > > > > more real to see it in person than on the little screen. And by
    > > >coincidence
    > > > > this afternoon I'll be driving past Manhatten and will see the new
    > > >skyline
    > > > > there, two teeth missing like a prize fighter that has taken a
    > > beating.
    > > > > News media and politicicos still not asking 'why' this happened, so
    > > the
    > > > > lessons are unlikely to be learned and the situation ripe for
    > > > > incidents of terrorism. Alas. I am going to try and prod 'why'
    > > questions
    > > >and
    > > > > discussion.
    > > >
    > > >Hi Lawrence,
    > > >
    > > >I don 't want to rip up more wounds, but I think the next will be of
    > > >interest of how people, like me reflects on what happened.
    > > >I did follow up CNN the last couple of days, and it seems to me that
    > > >it turns this tragedy into a show.
    > > >Breaking News, at about six o 'clock this evening, local time, was the
    > > >announcement that the NY police department did not need more
    > > >volunteers. Therefor they interrupted an interview with an ex- general
    > > >on how to invade Afghanistan.
    > > >
    > > >I wonder, this seems strange to me. I understand that each tiny bit
    > > >of information is of some importance to someone somewhere but
    > > >this seems odd.
    > > >This reminds me of one other interview which I saw this week with
    > > >an American woman living in Brussels, who calls this kind of beha-
    > > >vior " childish, playful and naive. "
    > > >She sees this troughout the American society.
    > > >This grasped my attention.
    > > >
    > > >Could the fact that Americans show such a behavior not be linked
    > > >to the fact that "Americans do not have a history " !?
    > > >Let me explain, in a sense, here in Europe we all lived such events,
    > > >WO I and WO II by which Germany get the blame and the trauma,
    > > >Belgium had the Dutroux- affair, England the death of Lady Diana.
    > > >These are only the recent examples, but our history is full of such
    > > >events.
    > > >
    > > >America had only three, recently, Pearl Harbor, JFK and WTC.
    > > >In a way, in historic time, America is still in its infancy and the
    > > people
    > > >acts accordingly.
    > > >If America can' t get it, noone will and if somebody has what America
    > > >wants they will take it....
    > > >This is IMO, yes indeed childish behavior and than there are two
    > > >possibilities, it makes you popular or it does not, most of the time,
    > > !
    > > >And children behaving like that on the schoolyard don 't have many
    > > >friends. They think they do, (NATO !?), but bullies always get what
    > > >they deserve.
    > > >
    > > >That is of course no way to see things, I understand, but in the
    > > >of this list of some importance.
    > > >In my mind there is no doubt that people get memetical determiniated
    > > >by the way they live, I posted this view this week, so couldn 't it not
    > > >be that American folks in contrast with Europeans are still, on some
    > > >memetical scale, in their infancy !?
    > > >
    > > >It seems to me, watching CNN all the time, that Americans can 't
    > > >grasp the fact that they did something, somewhere to somebody wrong.
    > > >And this seems to fit in the general picture of the child- analogy.
    > > >A bully turns always things upside down. He is not the blame, it is
    > > >always the others who don 't understand the way by which he behaves.
    > > >
    > > >What do you think !?
    > > >Hope I did not offend you, or others, in any way;
    > > >
    > > >
    > > I think I'll bite my lip on this one and not bite the hook.
    > >
    > > _________________________________________________________________
    > > Get your FREE download of MSN Explorer at
    > >
    > >
    > > ===============================================================
    > > This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
    > > Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
    > > For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)
    > > see:
    > >
    > >
    >The University of Stirling is a university established in Scotland by
    >charter at Stirling, FK9 4LA. Privileged/Confidential Information may
    >be contained in this message. If you are not the addressee indicated
    >in this message (or responsible for delivery of the message to such
    >person), you may not disclose, copy or deliver this message to anyone
    >and any action taken or omitted to be taken in reliance on it, is
    >prohibited and may be unlawful. In such case, you should destroy this
    >message and kindly notify the sender by reply email. Please advise
    >immediately if you or your employer do not consent to Internet email
    >for messages of this kind. Opinions, conclusions and other
    >information in this message that do not relate to the official
    >business of the University of Stirling shall be understood as neither
    >given nor endorsed by it.
    >This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
    >Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
    >For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)

    Get your FREE download of MSN Explorer at

    This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
    Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
    For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Mon Sep 17 2001 - 23:36:57 BST