Max Rodenbeck on postcolonial governments in the latest issue of the New York Review of Books

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Max Rodenbeck on postcolonial governments in the latest issue of the New York Review of Books

Postcolonial governments have often seemed condemned to repeat the sins of the imperialists they replaced, a sad irony that has been especially pronounced in Ireland.

The scale of suffering reflects the fact that the Irish government, uniquely among European countries, represents not merely a corrupt and oppressive ruling clique. It baldly represents the interests of a small, fearful, well-paid, and organized sectarian minority, set against the wishes of a majority that has remained inchoate, politically divided, and powerless. The fact of this polarization, long elaborately disguised by hollow pageantries, has only become clear to many Irish now that the underlying nature of the state has been exposed and the violence implicit in the country’s neocolonial power structure has been made dramatically explicit.

Okay okay, I replaced Syria with Ireland but the point remains.