K.Patelis on Tue, 30 Mar 1999 19:31:43 +0200 (CEST)

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the personal is political? <nettime> contra Barbrook, a tale of two , media, the case against NATO

Switching from the Greek Press to the British: where is Nettime situated?

In all due respect to my fellow Nettimers and to Richard, I think it is
rather obvious what is happenning here. The personal is involving the
political, and this is normal but the attempts to hide this are funny. 

Those living in the Balkan area are bound to be more sceptical of
everything happening if not because of history because of personal
experience. There is no country in the Balkan area that has not
experienced "big country" bullying.SO for none of us can this be great or

Geography also makes a difference since the left is far more marginalised
in the north of Europe thus the need to be affectionate towards any from
of "leftism" is greater ( which I think is what Richard is getting at in
his own way).

It is however important to note that the flavour of this list is
constituted by it members and I have personally being puzzled by being
part of it.

You see all my friends and greek newspapers are very critical of what is
happening,  what might be considered Serb propaganda in the West is
considered the orthodox view point, it is a normalised as its opposite
is, that the Western propaganda I am experiencing in the U.K.

If I where to listen to the BBC and then read a Greek newspaper I would be
given two strikingly different view points about the war, both of which
will claim they are the "norm". 

Now my fellow agglosaxons would merely condemn one of the two standpoints
as propaganda, which will leave me with the second viewpoint: Sebrs are
fashists, the NATO wants to protect piece. I have done
to much media theory to easily fall into this "the West really care about
human rights becuase it is guilty about the holocaust thing". I really
have not enough feelings of guilt to need it! Maybe it is cause I was born
when greece had a US supported dictatoship in place!

As somebody likely to be involved in the war if it spreads any further and
as somebody that has grown up fearing that the Greek state will at some
point buy into the conflict set out and fight the Turks, I do not want the
war to extend. I am so pleased my government has not joined , not becuase
I think they are a good government (this has nothing to do with it) but
because  when
given the right to participate in agreesion they said no, which makes me
hope that they might say know to a war with the Turks. Believe me I am the
opposite of a Greek nationalist.

Now Richard or anybody else in this list might think that NATO's actions
should be embrassed and that other un-ethical practices ( such as the
anti-Kurd genoside commited by the Turkish state) should be ignored, but I
think that embrassing things without having to bare any of their
consequences is a rather easy thing to do. So maybe just maybe you should
read Choosmky's posting again, and think of the following:

1)After the second war European memory has been constructed around
forgetting, it is a collective memory based on absolute denial of what
happened. The attempt has been for a peacefull prosperous Europe ( and
even the cold war can be seen a stabilising method in this light)

2)American memory is one constructed around  guilt for not interveening
in the war earlier, for
not stoping Hitler.

3)There is guilt around all military Nato supported actions that led to
violent mass killings ( Cyprus is lovely example)

Now 1, 2,3, make it very essay to appeal to poeple and present them with a
amazing choice:

"we can save the Europe we did not save then , we can kill the fashist we
did not kill then, to get rid of the guilt of what we do not now"

The reason for which Nettimer's might be thus embrassing the actions has
to be seen as phicological not political.

Now as Chosmky put it NATO's intervention is not stopping war it is making
it worse, 

So now tell me one reason for which if I critisise NATO I am what
says, a rant? I just sincerely do not understand the need to embrace NATO
actions and disavow alleged faschism, and I think that this is a
phicological question not a political one. Politically it is obvious NATO
is in the wrong.NObody that has read Balkan history and has read the
history of most modern conflicts could make a good case for what is
happening. If there is somebody in the list that could really answer
Chosky's case in the same intelectuall fashion I would love to hear it. I
am interested in political debate not in emotionally evoked reaction which
is all I am getting.


PS There have been several postings to me personally expressing anger
against greek students protesting in Greece, and pointing to my own
governments breaches of human rights. I have forwarded them to the
students in question, and they have predictably asked me "why is this not 
happning in Britain.?" I really would like the poeple that
complain to read a short history of the Balkan area since the first world
war and try and I mean really try to understand what is happening. And
since most of the poeple complaining are British I may add that this is
rather funny ! (and yup let me see your compatative streek out in search
of the worst government in the world- I mean common we are intelectualls
this can not be about our governments!It goes without saying we do not
support our governments in their military causes)

 Korinna Patelis
Department of Media and Communications
Goldsmiths College-London-SE14 6NW
DIRECT LINE 0171-9197243

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