Monday, February 18, 2008

Kosovo and Canada

from the CBC:
"...Aurel Braun, of the international relations program at the University of Toronto, said the Canadian government wants to ensure the province is a democratic entity that respects the rule of law and human rights.
He told CBC News that Canada is also worried about separatism, although there are significant differences between the situation in Kosovo and Canada.
"While I'm sure Canada will be recognizing Kosovo, I would be skeptical if Canada would be the first or one of the very first countries. It may be prudent to wait a little bit, but I don't think Canada will be too far along in recognizing Kosovo."
On Sunday, the Parti Québócois sent congratulations to the people of Kosovo...."

There should be no comparisons between events in Europe, Asia, and Africa and the countries of the Western Hemisphere, and Australia. The latter two -- apart from the aboriginal populations -- were colonized, settled by outsiders. So the newcomers 500-year-old or so history really doesn't count for much. In the former continents, after the migrations settled down, the people remained (for the most part) where they had been since first settlement millennia ago.

Neither the Quebequois nor even the rest of the Canadian population are nations in the true sense, the way European ones (for example) are. The latter are autochtonous -- indigenous, native, formed or originating in the place where found. Since prehistoric or early historic times, they have always been there. For Europeans -- at least until the former colonials began to immigrate to the lands of their former imperialists -- their land was theirs, no need to explain, to ponder over roots and origins.

In Canada and the U.S., what is Canadian and what is American still has not been decided nor defined. It can't be, because these are former colonies, on land they had invaded and colonized (ok, stolen) from the inhabitants. Even the Asian and Caucasus portions of the Russian Federation are similar, because they had been invaded by tsarist forces a few centuries ago. No wonder Putin is opposed to Kosovo. He has too many places in his own supposed federation that still have not accepted Russian rule (Chechnya, anyone?).

So while the PQ think they have a parallel in Kosovo, it just ain't so.

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