Re: Re: Easter I916 Commemorative Military Parades to return to Dublin
Home › Forums › Ireland › Easter I916 Commemorative Military Parades to return to Dublin › Re: Re: Easter I916 Commemorative Military Parades to return to Dublin
As a political ideology, ‘nationalism’ spans a broad horizon ranging from loyalty to American patriotism to SFer type politics to nazism to neo-nazism. In this regard, it is a difficult concept to pin down and commentators are right – this is not a place for discussing the 40 shades of nationalism.
There was another thread on this website in which commentators went into great detail discussing the minutae of battle damage done to the GPO in 1916 – photographs were provided of each bullet hole, detailed discussion was given on what might have been repaired and so on. I find it sad that the scars left on the stone appear to be more worthy of attention than the other people who died or were injured in that building – it says much about the values we hold as a nation (and yes, according to international law, Ireland is a nation no matter how distasteful that concept might be to some).
This is not about 1916 per se or the events in one particular building, it is about rightfully respecting the people who paid sacrifices for the present generation (whether they be freckled red-heads from Galway or newly arrived Nigerians awaiting citizenship). They are the people who at least contributed to Ireland’s present stability – it is for this reason that we are in the nice position of being able to send UN soldiers to Kosovo, Liberia and wherever. To state that they deserve to be honoured in some way is not blind nationalism, it is about respect and gratitude. To display that honour through a military parade is not about militarism or right-wing nationalism unleashed. They were people who died in military circumstances and should – as with all other nations – be honoured in military circumstances. The presence of the military – however pathetic it might be – is not a celebration of militarism, it is not a forerunner of the Nuremburg rallies – it is a symbolic gesture of respect by the lawful forces that symbolically and constitutionally uphold the sovereignty, territorial integrity and rule of law of the state and should be read as such. People are entitled to prefer another form of celebration or none at all – if that is the case such people should not undermine the sacrifce that people made for this country by intensely examining the details of a bullet mark on a stone pillar while ignoring the human cost that lies behind those marks. Those who proclaimed their humanity above their Irishness might wish to demonstrate that humanity by acknowledging the human price others had to pay for their self-righteous comforts and freedom of expression. If this is xenophobic nationalism, I must say, I must read up on my political ideologies. If a parade by constitutional and lawful forces tasked to uphold the statehood of Ireland is distasteful nationalism, then lets revel in the joys of anarchical disrespect.