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Wednesday, January 31, 2007

personal note

A few people have contacted me wondering where I am. I'm sorry. I must confess that my motives for neglecting my blog are entirely selfish. I can't help but take human rights abuse "personally". The revelation that I am a citizen of a country involved in this, a country for which up to two-thirds of the citizens approve of it, has been the dark night of my soul. I honestly thought that letting everyone know that this was happening was all that was needed, but now I see that the problem runs much deeper than that, and may be fundamental to human nature itself. The size of the problem has overwhelmed me.

I need some time to recoup. I need to find that place again where this knowledge gives me the will to fight, rather than sapping it away in a morass of depression and fatalism. Please give me some more time. I wish to get back to it more than anything, but I am no good to anyone without the right frame of mind. Know that I am doing everything that I can to overcome my limitations.


Blogger Mitchell said...

I think that the bigger problem is the war, the war on terror. The "return of torture" only happened within and because of this larger ecology of violence, which extends all the way up to mass murder and threatened mass murder. If the focus is to be Australia, then the problem is Australia's place in that larger "ecology"...

On the psychology of individual violence - the most interesting idea I know is due to Celia Green, who suggests that human beings collectively suffer from a syndrome in which they cannot bear to think straight about the ways in which impersonal reality frustrates and oppresses them, so all emotion is directed towards other human beings; and in particular, other human beings must be punished even for the "impersonal" suffering. She argues that ordinary human psychology is completely dominated by this displacement impulse; I certainly wouldn't go that far, but I think it must be a factor, which feeds into and is canalized by the larger negative-sum games which define so much of politics and interstate relations.

7/2/07 7:15 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Best of luck, friend.

11/2/07 4:29 pm  
Blogger James said...

Elendil, I certainly understand the need for an extended break from blogging. When you do get back into action again, would you be so kind as to note that my blog, The Left End of the Dial has moved to is new location: The Left End of the Dial v2.0.


3/3/07 7:20 am  
Blogger gandhi said...


I am really sad to read this post, but I totally understand. I mean TOTALLY! I know the pain of doing this shit day after day and actually CARING about what you are saying. It has had a profoundly negative impact on some areas of my own life as well. And I guess you know that Winter Patriot had to quit blogging for a while (he is now back blogging more than ever). Even bloggers get the blues, eh?

What hurts about your post is that I always considered you one of the most sensitive, caring and gentle souls I have come in contact with online. Take all the time you need, friend, and don't for one minute feel guilty about it.

Personally, I have come to realise more than ever that the battle between good and evil is not just an inherent part of our life on earth, it is actually the reason why we are here. I don't expect to "win" the battle as these forces will always be at war inside our own souls, but we must battle as best we can both within our selves and in the wider world.

Peace be with you, elendil!

9/3/07 9:59 am  
Blogger gandhi said...

PS: I still love you, man!

9/3/07 10:17 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


You are my Hero.


HC of 2Bs

4/4/07 2:40 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"If patience is worth anything, it must endure to the end of time. And a living faith will last in the midst of the blackest storm." -
Mohandas Gandhi

Just a thought and I understand...



4/4/07 2:47 pm  
Blogger Dr Victorino de la Vega said...

El-endil come back!
The world needs you

6/4/07 4:52 am  
Blogger Stuart Anthony Fenech said...

A few years back, an older friend was having a lot of family trouble. I tried to help out where I could, being only 19 or 20 at the time. One day, as we sat watching the idiot box, bewildered and exhausted at the end of the day, I asked him, "how do you keep doing this?". He answered, without skipping a beat, "hope springs eternal".

Hope you are feeling a little better now.



28/7/07 11:18 pm  
Anonymous I.M. Small said...


They put a bag upon my head
To bring me to the prison. There
On meager fare so I was fed,
The circumstances very spare.

One very prized of their techniques
As happened more than days and weeks
To tie a cinch around the penis:
So they would laugh when they had seen us;

Or they would urinate upon one,
And varied were the tortures done one,
Backdrop of other prisoners
Wailing in torment, theirs yet worse.

There was the sound of barking dogs
And we were treated less than hogs,
Till, after two years, give a day
Or take, so I was sent away:

Since I was not a terrorist
Nor from the outset did resist,
I wonder what the purpose was,
Why someone does the things he does.

An Arab, so I was a target,
This I believe; while men in war get
Treated to cruel injustices,
But never had I thought of this:

That the United States in turn
From petty dictators would learn,
But so, in all the world´s esteem
Must vanish fanciful that dream,

That former vision of a place
Where rule of law but men did trace
Within their actions, all beneath
The law. That image comes to death.

The soldiers took directives from
Men without uniform, as come
From private enterprising firms,
So I have learned, who set the terms.

Me they injected with syringe,
Stripped naked, and it makes me cringe
To think--who knows what it was for?--
I can´t have children anymore.

Ah, USA,
The stories are so many,
You threw away
A good name for a penny--
How ever shall
You get back reputation?
No, once let fall,
Though it were deputation,
It never will come back;
Derailed from virtue´s track.

22/11/07 3:30 am  
Blogger t said...

Hi there, I'm just updating some links and stumbled on your reason for being unable to blog. Just wanted to let you know I feel similarly. I have kept a blog also but it has been subject to the same pain of the soul which you are feeling and as you can see, it hasn't been updated for a long time. There were periods between other posts at which time posting also felt futile. At the moment that's about how I feel. Not that blogging is necessarily futile, but obviously there are lots of blogs out there and I try and support other people and comment. Not only that, it takes a lot of time and energy to do a good blog that is well-researched and thoughtful and many people in George Bush's America just don't have that sort of time. Anyway, I just wanted to let you know I empathize and hope you feel your old self again some time soon.

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6/3/08 7:14 pm  
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29/10/08 6:01 pm  
Anonymous Wael said...

I struggle with the same dilemma. I recently started a blog called Muslims Against Torture to call for an end to torture all over the world. On a broader scale, being a Muslim, I want to enlighten Muslims to the fact that Islam must oppose torture and terrorism all over the world.

For one thing, we Muslims are quite often the victims of torture and genocide, whether in Chechnya, the western provinces of China, Palestine, Bosnia or Guantanamo.

Secondly, we are the perpetrators of torture, since the governments of nations like Egypt and Saudi Arabia are among the worst offenders.

But torture is as old as the hills. We human beings have been doing this to each other for thousands of years. So what's my little blog going to accomplish?

That's the macro-scale and I can't address it. Instead, I try to look at it on the micro-scale. Suppose I direct public support to the campaigns of Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International to release specific prisoners; suppose I change only a few minds and they contact their Congress reps; suppose all of this results in the release of one single political prisoner or tortured prisoner. Just one. What is that worth?

To that prisoner, it is worth the world and everything in it.

If I can do that, if I can help just one person, then I've achieved something meaningful, something precious.

Try to look at it that way and maybe you will find your hope again.

24/9/09 6:13 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...




















14/10/09 5:37 am  
Blogger muymalgal said...

your feelings live on, i too have been obsessed with this topic for years. i can not believe the amount of people who just don't seem to care.
"i used to want to save the world, now i don't think it is worth it.."
that is how i have been feeling. needing to be released, but not having the ability to ignore it.
i will use my last breath to call out these war criminals who have destroyed my country. my hopes for the future, my faith in mankind.
it does seem though, that each passing year we get closer and closer to more waking up. i only hope those pricks live long enough to be charged with war crimes.

18/7/12 10:24 am  
Anonymous tank said...

yes, bigger problem is the war,

29/1/15 1:45 am  
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