Ned - for friends - is dead but what would his opinion have been of the #arabspring that started in Tunisia a few months ago? Did you check out "Lawrence of Arabia" or "T.E. Lawrence" on Secret US Embassy Wikileaks cables? I did. Output: no hits. No surprise of course because Lawrence died in 1935 after an accident with his motorcycle.
Historical flashback 1916-1922
Lawrence fought (1916-1918) with Arab irregular troops, in extended guerrilla operations, against the armed forces of the Ottoman Empire. The United Kingdom had agreed with Hussein bin Ali, Sharif of Mecca that if the Arabs revolted successfully against the Ottomans, the United Kingdom would support claims for an independent Arab state. A few weeks later, however, the secret Sykes-Picot Agreement, between the United Kingdom and France, determined that parts of the Arabian Peninsula would be divided between them. When the Ottoman Empire surrendered in 1918, the United Kingdom refused to keep to the letter of it's agreements with Hussein.
This was Lawrence's dream of an independent Arabia:
During the closing years of the war Lawrence sought, with mixed success, to convince his superiors in the British government that Arab independence was in their interests. The secret Sykes-Picot Agreement between France and Britain contradicted the promises of independence he had made to the Arabs and frustrated his work. That was the realpolitik of those days.
Lawrence on Arab Spring
The revolutions that have broken out in the #arabspring in 2010-2011 suggest a resurgence of Pan-Arabism in the region, one not based on anti-colonialism and the suppression of political dissent, but galvanized by a common thirst for democratic freedoms. What would Lawrence have thought of the #arabspring? My interpretation - 1st draft:
Arab state. Lawrence was disappointed when Hussein did not get his promised independent Arabia. He must have been happy when, more than 40 years later, their dream came true in a couple of independent Arab states. Finally self-determination. The borders must have worried him because they were drawn along the Sykes-Picot lines and not along tribal patterns and commercial routes. (1 and 2)
Self-determination tribes. Democracy for Arabs? It must have been a contradicion to him. Their nation would always be the tribe, the tribe and the tribe. First tribe. Fourth democracy. (3)
Noble Arab. He saw the Arabs through the romantic images he had learned as a youth: Bedu, Ashraf and the self-sufficient peasants of the Euphrates were the 'noble' Arabs. He disliked the Arabs who lived in cities. At the same time he knew the rules Bedu lived by were only an ideal. (4)
Noble democrat. At the end of his life he wrote this: "I am human. There ain't no such supercreatures as you would fain see. Or if there are I haven't met one [yet]." (5) He accepted finally - something he fought with his entire life - that he was not perfect. Nor did he expect this of his Arab tribesman. In fact his Arabs were chauvinistic, xenophobic and fanatically anti-Christian. (6)
King. For him it must have been a natural state that stronger men rule over others. He accepted the bad sides of Kings, Sherifs, Emirs etc in regard to their fatherhood over their tribes. Lawrence regarded the Arabs not as his equals but with an autocratic paternal benevolence. (7)
Dictator. Would he have liked Ben Ali (Tunisia), Mubarak (Egypt), Kaddafi (Libya), al-Assad (Syria) or King Abdullah (Saudi Arabia)? He would have accepted them as long as they were fair to their people. (8) In the Arabs - young and old - of today, who fight for their own share of a respectable life, he would have recognised the noble Arab of 1916. Partly romantic. Partly realpolitik. Arab democracy ... he would have loved to see how these buttons would flourish.
Lawrence on Wikileaks? No way. He was the right men on the right place: Middle-East 1916-1918. A day fly. The way Lawrence manipulated between the British and Arabs, for what he saw as the Right Cause, would not be possible today. Cable. Telephone. Social media. He would have been 1 voice in a cacophony of information.
Notes. (1) "He was among the first influential Englishmen to reject imperialism: a rejection that finally achieved its objective when the "wind of change" blew through British policy in the 1960s." source. (2) "Lawrence percieved the East through a set of highly romanticized - and therefore ethnocentric - ideas. His idea of 'self-determination' was in reality determination by certain traditional and reactionary elements who represented his own romantic idea of what the East should be like: not the 'wil of the people', but the superimposition of a romantic structure of his own." M. Asher/ Lawrence (1998), p 204-1. (3) Asher, p. 207. (4) Asher, p. 176 and 349. (5) Asher, p. 378. (6) Asher, p. 187. (7) Asher, p. 85. (8) Lawrence 1920: "How long will we permit millions of pounds, thousands of Imperial troops, and tens of thousands of Arabs to be sacrificed on behalf of a form of colonial administration which can benefit nobody but its administrators?"
Earthquakes. Tsunamis. War. Where do they come from? What caused them? It must be one of the most ancient questions. Punishment of God? A stitch of the Devil? Allah's sign to those who are not servile to his laws? Notice End of Time? Or ...? What do you think?
"The heart is the core of the earth. When the earth is shaken everything is pulled back to this core. This is gravity.... This is LOVE."
"My first attempt to do a video message. In Light of March 10, 2011 World Events YouTube #TSUNAMI #EARTHQUAKE Love and light - J"
Juno (The_LoveGoddess) claims in her youtube-message that #earthquake and #tsunami in #japan are part of God's divine plan. It's the "purification" of mother Earth/ Nature. We don't have to worry or cry. It's Love.
The image of "purification" puzzles me. Next to that it puzzles me that a mystic like Juno shares with great passion her claim. Absolutely convinced that her truth is True.
First some facts. The world according to me:
God or gods are psychological projection of species 'homo sapiens'. Names of JWH, God and Allah are not given to humanity by Him via a holy book but are given by human messengers to Him. Given to Him. Not the other way around. more
Religion has been invented by species ‘homo sapiens’. In a way human beings need some external “being” to give their lives direction and meaning. more
Our life is sweet and sour. These days it seems we don't want to see our sour emotions anymore. We deny them. Translating 'sour' by purification is a denial. more
Enlightenment. It happened to me three times. What? THAT what Plotinus calls: lifted out of the body into myself and beholding marvellous beauty, becoming One with the Universe. more
Keep the details above in mind when you read my letter to Juno.
Nuts? I don't think you are nuts by claiming that the earthquakes and the tsunami in Japan (March 2011) are "purification". At the same time I think you are wrong. The metaphor or image is wrong. Any idea how influential images are? more When I read in between your tweets I know that you had your moment(s) of enlightenment. You feel the need to share your message or connection with "God" to the world. You are a mystic! You want to share your love. According to me there is no such thing as God. Nor Devil. Nobody is testing, punishing or rewarding planet Earth with everyone and everything on it. No one is pulling strings. Nothing is cleaning or purifying planet Earth.
Species 'homo sapiens' lives on planet Earth. A planet with a crust that occupies less than 1% of Earth's volume. Do we live on solid ground? Hardly! Earthquakes come and go. Planet Earth is cooling down. Image 'cooling down'. People built houses on steady ground. Mostly rocks. For generations it's a save spot. Everyone in Japan knows they are living on a fault line. It's dangerous. The risks are acceptable. If not they would have moved to another place a long time ago. It's sour when relatives drown in a tsunami and your house and the rest of the village is wiped out.
Why am I writing this letter to you? It's a letter from a friend. (Always beware of your friends!) The presentday sour in Japan is not God's, Planet Earth's or Mother Nature's purification. It's the cooling down of planet Earth. Don't deny the sour. Don't confound love with bad luck or misfortune. It's cooling down, stupid ;)
"Als de bodem van deze appeltaart net wat harder was geweest zou i perfect zijn."
"Als de politici gewoon eens naar het volk zouden luisteren zou het veel beter gaan."
Indien u dit herkent - en kunt lezen - bent u naar alle waarschijnlijkheid een azijnzeiker uit De Lage Landen (letterlijke vertaling van 'The Netherlands'). Wat? Wij nederlanders schijnen een "culturele afwijking" te hebben dat wij het "altijd" hebben over de dingen die niet geregeld zijn. Wij hebben het altijd over de laatste 5%. En nooit over de 95% van dingen of zaken die wel geregeld zijn. Geen feestjes over onze 95%. Wel zeiken over de ander zijn 5%. Geen feestjes wel zeuren.
Waar komt deze typische nederlandse eigenschap vandaan? Zou het mogelijk zijn dat dit onze tweede natuur geworden is sinds wij vanaf jaar 1000 begonnen zijn met het bouwen van dijken? Jaar in jaar uit. Samen bescherming zoeken achter zelfopgeworpen dijken. Bij dijken gaat het over 100% veilige dijken. Een dijk die voor 95% goed is levert geen droge voeten op. Die breken door. Het water komt er overheen.
Het rare is dat Nederland bij 'Hoe gelukkig zijn wij'-testen steevast bovenin eindigt. Wij voelen ons "goed" gelukkig. Maar bij ons commentaar op de dagelijkse gang van zaken is daar weinig over terug te vinden. Gescheiden werelden? Zijn we schichofreen?
Wat denk jij? Is het geen tijd voor een #feestje om ons te ontworstelen aan onze dijktik? Wat zou volgens jou de slogan moeten zijn van dit feestje?
It's not the moment that a subject pops up. It's not the comments. It's not the RT's. It's not the compliments. It's the writing of these sentences in a blog that makes me happy.
To be more exact. The very moment that I realize that I wrote down another memory, dream or opinion makes me happiest. Most of the time this happiness glows in me for a few seconds. Sometimes for a few hours.
Today and tomorrow this blog feels like mine. In a few weeks from now I'll recognize the words I wrote before. But in a way it's no longer mine. It could have been written by anyone.
How to Satisfy a Woman Every Time?
Caress her, give her compliments, hug her, charm her, let her enjoy, massaging her, fix things, empathize, sing for her, give her support and food, calm her, raise expectations, allow her to have her way, flatter her, encourage, cheer her up, hug, ignore fat pads, excite, give her rest, be protective, call her up, anticipate, be forgiving, give her jewels, entertain her, carry things for her, be polite, fascinate her, give attention, confidence, defence, clothing, brag about her, treat her as a princess, agree with her, pamper her, embrace her, die for her, dream of her, flirt, agree with her, squeeze her gently, please her, make her your idol, adore her.
How to Satisfy a Man Every Time? Do you really want to know? Yes!