Labour in labour

Re-inventing the Malta Labour Party (and Maltese politics): an unauthorised tazebao.

A short history of war wrecks in Maltese

Posted by fcb on April 6, 2008

We are publishing a comment (No. 120) about the venom that oozes out of your screen when you access certain other blogs dedicated to the political season Malta is going through. The commentator compares the effect on her of these expressions of hate to the experience of being caught in the middle of a car convoy of celebrating PN supporters immediately after the 8 March elections.

“I was in the presence of three Northern Europeans – one of them driving – and we were caught in a carcade. My friends – who know Malta well and immediately deciphered the symbolism – were visibly upset and one, who later apologised, asked the rest if what we had just seen did not remind them of the revolting scenes of Somali mobs dragging the bodies of US soldiers through the streets after the so-called Battle of Mogadishu in 1993 (ta’ Black Hawk Down biex niftehmu).” [read the full comment below]

The symbolism recognised by our commentator’s foreign friends refers to objects waved by the young men and women in this particular carcade. We do not know if this was an isolated incident or one of many. Anecdotal evidence suggests that it was by no means the only one. The point is, as the commentator emphasises, that we – proud brand new members of the European Union and even prouder advocates of its Christian roots – do not seem to lose much sleep when confronted with the ‘tribal’ psychological and moral violence some of us (many of us?) are capable of.

As the Labour party labours to choose a new leader – understandably a complex process of which the actual election in June will be but the visible part of the proverbial iceberg – some good souls out there are labouring hard to whip up hate against some of the contenders. Our commentator does not ask why this is happening. Is it part of a well-planned strategy or is it just blind, individual and un-coordinated rage? The commentator focuses, rather, on the roots of this cultural phenomenon. Authors of poison blogs and drunk kids in post-electoral carcades puking cheap vodka, undigested pizza and astounding hate are so many wrecks from a war that we have to leave behind us.

“But pappa, have you really thought this through?”, the narrator asks her father in Marina Lewycka’s charming and relatively recent novel ‘A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian’. The problem is that, no, the older amongst us -those that have lived through at least some of what our commentator refers to as the long Maltese war that started more or less after World War 2 and that may have come to an end sometime in the 90s – have not really come to terms with our own contemporary history. Until we do, we will not be able to understand and to manage the extraordinary emotions it is still capable of generating not only amongst its survivors but also amongst those that were born when the dust had already began to settle. Until such time as we do, beware of the wrecks.

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3 Responses to “A short history of war wrecks in Maltese”

  1. Tazebao Caretaker said

    DEAR READERS, ALTHOUGH YOU ARE PERFECTLY FREE AND WELCOME TO PASTE YOUR COMMENTS ON ANY SECTION OF OUR VIRTUAL TAZEBAO, MAY WE SUGGEST THAT YOU DO SO IN THE SPACE PROVIDED UNDER THE LATEST POST “A bow in the cloud: unity, diversity and the Movement”. WE ARE ASKING THIS OF YOU BECAUSE WE WOULD LIKE TO CHANNEL THE NEW COMMENTS IN ONE SECTION FOR EASY READING AND CROSS-REFERENCE. YOU ARE NOT, OF COURSE, LIMITED TO THE THEME OF THE POST BELOW WHICH YOU LEAVE YOUR COMMENT, AS LONG AS IT IS IN SOME WAY RELEVANT TO THE ISSUE OF THE CHOICE OF A NEW LEADER.

    THANK YOU

    THE CARETAKER

  2. Tazebao Caretaker said

    WE HAVE BEEN RECEIVING INCREASING QUANTITY OF SPAM. SPAM-SUSPECT MAIL IS AUTOMATICALLY DIVERTED TO A SPAM FOLDER PENDING VERIFICATION. WE FILTER MATERIAL IN THIS FOLDER NOT LESS THAN ONCE EVERY 24 HOURS TO RELEASE NON-SPAM ITEMS CAUGHT IN THE NET. WE APOLOGISE TO THE SEVERAL CONTRIBUTORS WHOSE COMMENTS WERE THUS DELAYED.

    THE CARETAKER

  3. danny attard said

    prosit guys for blog list; first rate work and may this blog take us beyond a next labour victory.

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