Grethe H. L. Melby on Mon, 5 Apr 1999 01:31:16 +0200 (CEST)

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Re: <nettime> guess i'm not used to this machist talking

Dear Alain,

and dear nettimers,

I cannot be used to it either, this machist talking. But I have felt lost
about it. I have wondered if I am too naive when claiming thoughts of
humanity and so and so to my "real" friends. I can do so because I am safe
behind my desk here in Bergen, Norway. And I have felt perverted sometimes,
not feeling lack of my regular soaps (I haven't got a TV anymore) and have
wondered if the letters from Novi Sad, the voice of the girl with a sister
in Pristina, the angry letters of various political activists, and lately,
the rather patronising open letter to insomnia; I have wondered if they are
all in a very bizarre way, filling the soap opera gap in my life. That
makes me  just as good as a fan of a snuff film.

I wrote to my Serbian friend a few days ago: - it must be impossible for me
to understand, but how can you defend this tyrann Milosevic? I asked.

I am constantly pushing him about the nationalistic referenses he gives me. 

But, who am I to push a friend who are bombed, and in danger? 

I ask him about Kosova, and he constantly responds with historical facts. I
tell him that; and tell him I am not satsfied. I tell him I defended
refugees from Kosova for two years. They hided in churches, afraid of the
Norwegian police, threatended to be sent back home by Norwegian goverment.

But who am I to confront a friend waiting for bombs my own country is
supporting to be dropped?

How far can I go in arguing?

I guess this never has happended in history before. I don't believe people
argued about politics on the phone during ..what war could it be... at the
moment the bombes were falling? It is new to history that someone in a war
zone can write day by day letters to someone far from it and get like

And it pushed me to this ethical line: how far can I go?

To what extent can I put on the role of the distanced spectator, watching
somebody living their lives, and moderating them when I find them to be wrong.

To what extent to I have responsible to speak up when I disagree?

When reciveing Alains mail, I felt it made an opening to ask these
questions. I dont kow how to respond to it. Sometimes I feelt that the only
thing to do is to write a diary from Bergen, Norway.

The days have been peaceful here in Bergen. I have been walking up the hill
abow the city today, where you can get a nice wiew of it. The sun was
shining, there was a brief feeling of spring in the air. A lot of turists
came to take pictures of course.

There were only old newspapers because of the easter holiday. I read one of
them, I found it left on a bench.

They make me feel so silly. I just cannot stand the journalists in this
country treating the world events as if they have to be dramatized like a
Hollywood movie. Today I read about "the war at the internet" and the
Serbian hackers terrorizing the internet. I was about to cry, it sounded
like an episode of the X-files serial. This is what makes me the most
crazy, it makes me feel like  the french theorist Jean Baudrillard,
claiming the Gulf War Never Happened, and claiming the war in Yougoslavia
never happened, at least not as I have been told it did. When Mr.
Baudrillard were asked to actually go to the Gulf, he gave this answear: "I
live in the virtual" he said, "Send me to the real, and I don't know what
to do".

I lean towards the fence stopping people to fall down. I put my head in my
hands, trying to throw it away.


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