Wednesday, August 09, 2006
-----------------------Song of The Day
I was amused by Burak Bekdil's PKK piece today in the Turkish Daily News and his non-existent hollah towards the end:
In this odd equation of real-politik, one recalls a Saudi tribal proverb: If you know the price of a man's ransom, kill him" (the ransom was the price that would be exacted by the slain man's tribe in revenge for his death). In other words, If you know what the costs will be for your actions, and you can afford them, go ahead." Unfortunately, Turkey does not know the price it would have to pay if it "killed its enemy."
Well, King Abdullah and his 17, no wait 15, no wait, 8 planes being in Turkey today does add a little flavor to the Saudi proverb. Or perhaps not, given Jon Lee Anderson's piece on Hizbullah in the most recent issue of the New Yorker:
Mroue cited an old Saudi tribal proverb: “If you know the price of a man’s ransom, kill him.” The ransom was the price that would be exacted by the slain man’s tribe in revenge for his death. “In other words, if you know what the costs will be for your actions, and you can afford them, go ahead,” Mroue said. “But here, who knows what the price of the ransom is?”
Admirably verbatim. I suppose "one does recall" as Bekdil says, especially if you by some fate like me happened to read both articles within the same hour. But citing our inspiration probably does hinder our "conversational traditions".
Casual proverb stealing notwithstanding, Bekdil's pessimistic sarcasm is rather commendable, though his conclusion is a tad alarmist: "But what, really, can Turkey do about its multi-million Kurds who do not yet kill but sympathize with their comrades who kill?"