March 22nd, 2005

eyes black and white

Please tell me tales of deception!

A colleague of mine told me that according to an african friend (from which part of West Africa?), many african tales for little children feature as a hero a thief-crook, whose tricks are glorified and who wins in the end. I'm looking for corroboration of this information, if possible sample such tales, with metadata about the context in which these tales are told.

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eyes black and white

RIP, Joe Random Chechen Non-Murderous Freedom Fighter

I admit that my previous post RIP, Aslan Maskhadov was so lacking of an explanation as to be easily misread. I admit that was based on an thinly ascertained opinion that might turn out to be wrong after further examination. And thus I thank my gentle reader averros for correcting me, though I'm not sure how much to trust his information. I am still looking for independent confirmation of his statements, but pending such confirmation, I stand corrected. I wrote the previous post hurriedly, because it was a hot reaction to some news. I knew I wouldn't be able to blog for some time, and I wanted to share my concern about an underdiscussed yet very relevant episode of our times, war in Chechnya. Now that I have more time, I would like to make it clearer what I did and didn't want to say on this topic, and what my opinion is now.

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NOTE AND UPDATE: This article has always been about why my message didn't suppose personal endorsement of Maskhadov, though my point was admittedly quite unclear from my previous post. I have since received contradictory statements about Maskhadov himself, and pending independent confirmation, I will refrain from giving a verdict either way about Maskhadov. I have changed the tone of the article several time, alternatively leaning one way or the other. I now explain clearly why I lean however slightly with my current sources, since that's what the whole point of sources, though I'm very open to other sources, if they prove reliable. However, and that's also a point, I will grant Maskhadov the benefit of the doubt, whereas no such doubt exists regarding the culpability of the KGB bastards.