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On Romanian immigration to Britain

Julian Ross decembrie 31, 2013 Dezbatere, Opinie, Societate/Life
41 comentarii 3,276 Vizualizari

The British media is awash with comment upon the free movement of Romanian and Bulgarian nationals. The conclusion, supported by some reactionary politicians, is that economic migration is a bad thing. Nigel Farage would prefer to admit Syrian refugees over Romanians. This ‘debate’ is a sorry affair, ignorance mixed with prejudice, whilst the real issues affecting Britain are brushed over.

So why should I be any more qualified to comment? My involvement with Romania goes back twenty-four years. I lived there for eight years, becoming a moderately fluent Romanian speaker. I have read around the history and culture of Romania, and I have met Romanians from politicians to peasants. As manager of a tourist business, I welcomed people from fifty nations to Romania. And beyond pure academic knowledge and a tourist’s viewpoint, I have discovered just how hard it can be to run a business and make a decent living in Romania.

But let’s wind the clock back to 1989, to the events that thrust Romania in the British consciousness. Some of us visited Romania to provide ‘aid’, and many more generously donated money. We travelled across Europe in vehicles laden with food, clothes and consumer goods, creating the impression that we came from a land of plenty. Those of us who brought Romanians to Britain promptly took our guests to visit massive supermarkets, smiling at their wide eyes and tears. And now we’re surprised that Romanians want to live and work in Britain?

Living in a rural community in Romania, I soon realised that my neighbours were far too busy trying to make a living to pay much attention to their leaders. After centuries of being invaded and dominated, Romanians have learned to make the best of whatever happens. The concept that citizens can change the course of their nation, and the growth of a system that admitted the possibility, took centuries to develop in Britain. But we expect Romanians to engage with their government, root out corruption and become ‘like us’.

Isn’t that what the ‘aid industry’ was about – making Romanians ‘like us’? I know that some people took out food and painted walls out of the goodness of our hearts. And others of us went there to ‘build churches’, creating more cloned neo-Protestant ‘believers’ just like us. How long did it take for denominationally-affiliated schools, bakeries and pharmacies to appear? Of course you can have bread or medicine, we said, so long as you become a Baptist.

Another piece of reality: life in a Romanian village made it clear just what a narrow sliver of the nation we saw when delivering ‘aid’ back in the early ’90s. How little we saw of the real Romania. And what a poor impression of the country our fundraising must have given to our British supporters.

Soon the EU came upon the scene, offering generous benefits if only Romania would transform itself into the image of a modern European nation. Yes, let’s talk about reducing corruption, close some orphanages and enact some laws that mention ‘equality’. Let’s privatise some companies and repair some roads. Of course we shall send some soldiers to Iraq to risk death in place of yours. Just like we Romanians pretended to join your chosen sect, we’ll happily give the impression of fitting in to your political union.

As for the leaders of Romania, I believe that they expected three things from joining the EU. Money, of course, and those in power personally benefited mightily from this. Of course an exodus of skilled people would occur, but all that European money could pay for private health care for the ruling class. And the ‘undesirables’ would leave – with Roma at the top of the list – to become someone else’s problem. But I know enough about Romania not to blame its citizens for their leaders. The EU failed the taxpayers who funded expansion and the citizens of the new member states.

The EU doesn’t seem to have paid much attention to the internal Romanian situation. Did they really grasp what was going on? I don’t remember a visible Roma presence in 1990. But I do recall the lines of peasants queuing two years later to register the land expropriated by the communist regime. Of course it was right to return stolen land to farming families, stolen houses to their former owners. But what would those do whose ancestors possessed neither land nor property? What about people thrown out of work when inefficient state industries imploded? That kind of shock therapy – unequal, arbitrary and sometimes plain discriminatory – will produce a result. The Romanian people are consummate survivors. Let’s give them credit for this. As a national group they survived centuries of oppressive Ottoman and Habsburg domination, two world wars and several decades of brutal state socialism, emerging as hospitable hosts ready to kindly welcome visitors. After 1990 each group did what it needed to in order to survive. At risk of generalising, former communist officials took what they could. Skilled workers emigrated. Farmers worked the land and cut timber. Roma collected scrap metal, begged and stole. I know that the full picture is more complex. But the point is clear: each did what he or she needed to survive, based on personal circumstances. And these behaviours do not accord with the British way. How could they? We haven’t experienced history as the Romanians have.  But this is all rather complicated. The leaders and organs of the EU don’t seem to have taken the time to try and understand the Romanian psyche. They certainly didn’t understand established members – otherwise why would Greece have got into such a mess, catching out the EU in the process?

Opportunity to further oneself is limited in Romania, and little trickles down to benefit the majority. No wonder ambitious people want to leave! I believe that Romanians are unusually well adapted for emigration. As I see it, the essence of Romanian national identity is based upon language and myth – in the ethnographic sense of the word – which a person can carry in his or her head. It’s not rooted within historic places and celebrated landscapes like our traditional British identity. The castles and historic towns in Romania were, for the most part, built by invaders and immigrants. Greater Romania only came into existence after the First World War. Until then most Romanians were second-class citizens within someone else’s empire – and communism was no better. So it’s easier to leave, carrying national identity within, than we British might think. It’s possible to thrive secure in that rich and conveniently mobile identity. And if Romanians are sensitive to being treated as a barely-tolerated minority, history explains why.

I’ve touched upon Ottoman and Habsburg domination of the land that is now Romania. A sizeable German population also lived in Romania, and smaller groups of Czechs, Poles and others still live there. As a British national I was welcomed into Romania. I might, had I been more cunning – or, perhaps, ruthless – have prospered. The point is that Romanians see nothing strange in a foreign person working successfully in a host nation. Based upon historic experience, those immigrants have done well.

Anyway there’s good economic sense in immigration. I work in Britain’s engineering industry, where we’re desperately short of skilled people. My colleagues come from a plethora of lands on five continents, including at least one Romanian and a Bulgarian. Not only do we gain from the skills these people bring – and their desire to succeed – we are depriving their homelands of IT specialists, engineers and doctors. But of course we don’t worry about that so long as we can fill that post and deliver that contract on time.

But let’s look for some similarities. Few British or Romanians want Roma as neighbours. In my experience Romanians perceive Roma as an alien group, differing in language, history and culture. And the two groups are different, socially and ethnically – it is quite wrong to characterise ethnic Romanians according to the Roma stereotype. The British don’t want Roma – or anyone ‘undeserving’ – to receive money from the social security system funded by our taxes. However in Britain we don’t want to say this. For that matter, we don’t want to be heard saying that we feel ‘threatened’ by Muslims, another group readily and regularly stereotyped. So we project our feelings onto a ‘safe’ target – white Caucasians ‘like us’ generally disinclined to steal or support terrorism. Perhaps Romanians will simply feel offended and move elsewhere? That’s a vestige of empire – we British are used to ‘foreigners’ harrumphing at our prejudice.

A little introspection is needed. In the new global economy, a more ‘efficient’ Britain offers few employment opportunities to an unskilled underclass of millions. Nowadays finance, technology and IT are our strengths – not agriculture, coal mining or building ships. Even call centre jobs have been exported. In our society several million people are simply superfluous. If there weren’t half a million Poles at work in Britain the underclass would be no better off. A vicious combination of poor skills and costly housing would keep them captive, dependant on social security. If that’s the case, what is the problem with relatively skilled people coming here ready and willing to work? Nothing, actually: but it’s easier to rail against economic migrants than to admit that the living standards of the majority depend upon the inequality inherent in a broken society?

So, let’s accept that Romanians will come to live and work in Britain. Let’s take the opportunity to work together: Romanians contributing to the British economy whilst Britain – consciously and deliberately – helps Romania to strengthen its society and public institutions. Let’s become friends, building upon the goodwill that began one December twenty-four years ago.

Friends tell the truth. They offer criticism as well as support. Friends develop the maturity to stick together. They learn about what makes the other tick. Friends give as much as they take, or even more. They grow in partnership. Friends can be different in character, age and experience, but they share mutual respect. They learn from one-another.  Friendship could be good for both Britain and Romania.

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Currently there are "41 comments" on this Article:

  1. Rasvan Lalu Rasvan Lalu spune:

    Un text confuz, animat de bune intentii, dar ratat. Autorul asterne pe hârtie cliseele prostesti si mincinoase ale main-streamului britanic asupra românilor, pentru a le combate, dar, din confuzie si neîndemânare, mai mult le confirma.
    Înteleg ca autorul a venit initial în România plin de prejudecati si animat de misionarism baptist, a învatat câte ceva în contact cu realitatea, dar prea mult tot nu s-a dumirit.
    Bunele intentii, atunci când sunt înecate în confuzie si neîntelegere, nu dau decât un ghiveci dulceag, ca textul de fata.
    Strainu’ cel bun si generos care-i mângâie pe cap pe români.

    • r2 spune:

      “Înteleg ca autorul a venit initial în România plin de prejudecati si animat de misionarism baptist, a învatat câte ceva în contact cu realitatea, dar prea mult tot nu s-a dumirit.”

      Jesus, Rasvan Lalu. Cat de bine stapaniti limba engleza? In pasajul de mai sus sunteti pe langa subiect “big time”.

      Si chiar daca ar fi fost corect ce-ati inteles dvs, sa reprosati unui oaspete pe tonul pe care l-ati folosit faptul ca, desi are bune intentii, acestea nu inseamna nimic daca nu se poate ridica la nivelul intelectual la care va asteptati dvs este o reactie mult sub standardul acestui site.

      • Hantzy spune:

        Articolul arata, destul de acurat, ce cred romanii despre ei insisi. Astfel, el raspunde convingerilor multora dintre noi, dar are si dl Lalu dreptate.

    • north of 60 spune:

      The author made an effort to express his thoughts. I believe he’s sincere and perhaps he’s trying to make a difference. The article’s pros and cons should be debated and arguments and most important should follow the rule of common sense. Your post has none of the above instead excels through arrogance. A pity to say the least!

      Read the posts below Mr. Lalu and notice most English speaker visitors had different insights towards the article. There is little doubt the article had sparked genuine attention and interest regardless the pro and con arguments.

      What is your contribution to this debate as an author on Contributors? None so far. As an author I would appreciate if you reconsider your post and offer some meaningful insights. If there is not much trouble for you sir. I wish you a happy new year.

    • AlinL spune:

      Rasvan Lalu,
      Ti-o spun prieteneste ca n-ai inteles acest articol. Nu este scopul meu sa te atac. Iti atrag atentia ca acest articol trebuie inteles in limba in care a fost scris. Doar pentru ca intelegi un film american nu inseamna ca poti recepta corect semnificatiile de finete ale limbii engleze. Dupa parerea mea, de data aceasta, neintelegerea este la tine. Perceptia ti-a jucat feste – nu mi-e clar daca este o problema de mecanica limbii engleze sau daca este un complex de inferioritate cultural. Te poti relaxa, acest om nu ne ataca, nu e nimic confuz in articolul lui si nu vorbeste “de sus”. Eu zic sa recitesti relaxat si sint sigur ca vei intelege.

    • cuman spune:

      autorul nu e departe de adevar.
      spus din gura unui britanic e chiar un act de curaj.
      cati britanici ai vazut ca au curajul sa vorbeasca deschis despre asta?
      incearca ceva argumente in sustinerea celor pe care le afirmi.

      pare mai usor sa fii batut pe crestet de un britanic in articole de astea
      decat sa fii batut de soarta la propriu de bolsevici si urmasii lor actuali.
      dupa 24 de ani la putere e o coalitie in care majoritari sunt urmasii defunctului PCR.
      trist nu?

      nu uita de unde am plecat si ce era aici acum 24 de ani.

  2. adrian spune:

    One note: besides the Habsburg and Ottoman opression of Romanian land and people, one must not forget the Russian Empire crimes comitted on this land. Basically the Carpations were the battlefield of the above three empires for centuries.

    And yes, after centuries of failures, let’s see how others manage the “social integration” of the gypsies (this is the word). Good luck with that!

  3. amanda13 spune:

    I have never been to Britain and I admit that in light of what I have read recently in the British newspapers I think I never will. I live in the US where I became a citizen and where a more coherent and decent system of immigration has made me feel at home; as you said, I did carry my cultural heritage with me and adapted it to the American culture. But my adaptation was smooth; I have never felt discriminated for being a foreigner here, and I can’t even imagine what Romanians in the UK must be going through! Your article is right though, and I thank you for it, I just keep my fingers crossed and hope that my fellow countrymen who move to the UK from now on will be better received. I’m skeptical about that friendship you mention, but let’s just hope I’m wrong…

    • Julian Ross White Horse Pilgrim spune:

      Fortunately I don’t see ordinary citizens in Britain following the provocation of certain newspapers and politicians with prejudice. I’ve even read a couple of articles that say how well Romanians – including some Roma families – fit in with their new British neighbours. There were some very supportive comments from people who have employed Romanians and praise their work ethic, much as we praised Polish workers when they were new to Britain. So maybe the media has just stirred a storm in a tea cup? I hope that’s all it is.

      • amanda13 spune:

        I thank you for your insightful reply, and I hope so too. :)

      • cuman spune:

        britanicii sunt destul de conservatori( si extrem de orgoliosi),deci nu am mare incredere asupra faptului ca vor accepta 100% cu inima deschisa integrarea unor romani( aici ma refer si la tigani) in comunitatea lor.

        nu uita faptul ca in Romania inca nimeni nu isi pune problema ( si nici nu face nimic ) sa educe copiii de tigani si sa incerce sa ii integreze aici incepind cu primii pasi in viata.
        doar asa se poate rupe lantul prejudecatilor in care sunt tinuti.prin educatie.

        acelasi lucru este valabil si pentru britanicii de rand care stau dupa benefit.
        educatia ar ajuta sa isi creeze skills care sa ii ajute sa aiba joburi decente si sa faca ceva pentru regat.

        finnaly
        ceea ce spune amanda are sens prin prisma faptului ca in US imigrantii au alt statut si multi americani sunt a doua sau a treia generatie de imigranti.

  4. casandra spune:

    “As I see it, the essence of Romanian national identity is based upon language and myth – in the ethnographic sense of the word – which a person can carry in his or her head. It’s not rooted within historic places and celebrated landscapes like our traditional British identity. The castles and historic towns in Romania were, for the most part, built by invaders and immigrants. Greater Romania only came into existence after the First World War.”

    Afirmaţii în egală măsură adevărate şi imprecise. Şi cu posibile deschideri foarte riscante. Nu sunt românii ataşaţi de locurile speciale aflate pe teritorul lor naţional?! Au ei capacitatea şi sunt pregătiţi să-şi conserve “identiatea”, chiar şi în absenţa unui teritoriu de vatra? Foate discutabila opinia acesta a unui urmaş al celţilor, galilor, vikingilor, normanzilor, s.a.m.d. Valuri, valuri de “identităti” distincte de “imigranţi” şi “cuceritori” care au forjat identitatea de astăzi a britanicilor. De ce ei aşa, iar noi altminteri?

  5. dusu spune:

    ´´the essence of Romanian national identity is based upon language and myth ´´ pertinenta observatia dvs !
    ptr a forma Great Romania acesta este intr adevar primul argument,dar poate mai exista inca putzina ;cit a mai ramas, o diferentza culturala intre provincii
    am notat in articolul dvs un amestec intre ceea ce dvs remarcatzi,ca strain si acele aspecte greu de acceptat si azi din istoria acestei tzari pe care le atzi primit de a gata de la nativi.
    Happy New Year !

  6. UnOarecare spune:

    Thank you Friend! And a happy 2014 ahead!

  7. tudorel spune:

    Julian,

    As a romanian, your article made my New Years Eve a lot better. Thanks & La Multi Ani!

  8. AlinL spune:

    I am not sure what I find more heart worming: your insight into the Romanian society or your own self-awareness. I hope that you did well for yourself whilst in Romania – you deserve it.

  9. Adrian spune:

    Thank you for this article, Mr. Ross!

  10. north of 60 spune:

    Happy New Year Mr. Ross, and thank you for taking the time to paint an accurate and vibrant image of the Romanian society. There are major differences between the Romanians and the British societies and populace fabric although much of the British side is thrown towards the empire inheritance and side effects.

    The British Empire has “exported” its culture and civilization through millions of Britons all over the globe from India, to Africa, Australia, and North America. There was enough time for the British to establish powerful and longstanding civil norms and regulations. Much of them are today the very foundation of several powerful nations worldwide.

    That’s not the case with the Romanians. What we call Romania today is a very young construct about 100 years old. Not nearly enough to define a nation leave aside ambitions as paramount civil rights and individual freedom. The Romanians are very much a nation still in need of defining its own identity. Such process takes times and the relatively short history of Romania is plagues with unfortunate events: foreign domination, wars, totalitarian ideology and the big brother bullying policies.

    By default, based on their twisted history Romanians distrust the authority of the law because in most cases the rule of law was against the common good of the populace. The aforementioned phenomenon is very much alive today. Partisan laws, the super-immunity for the political layer, wide spread corruption and administrative incompetence are the trademarks of the contemporary Romanian society. Since 1990 the country is bleeding its skilled workforce all over the world. Gradually the country belongs to retirees in most cases vitally linked to meager pension payments and unskilled population. Several millions highly skilled people have left the country for the last two decades. Very few are making plans to return.

    Apparently the process will continue throughout 2014 and onwards. Countries like UK, Germany, and Holland and so on will adjust their internal work regulation to make the best of the new migratory wave. Despite adverse far-right political pressure the despised new guest workers will neatly fill in the holes within hosts’ countries economy.

    Indeed, most new comers will belong to the Caucasian group. Undesirable Roma Nation will be carefully screened, labeled and meticulously packed up and sent back to the host country. Germany is already working on special legislation for dealing with law benders: for a gipsy is so easy to break the law because through their culture and low work skills they have very few options to remain within the law. They will steal, send their kids to prostitution rings, they will beg and generally speaking make a mess where they camp: because somehow they have to survive. They were, are and continue to be the “unfitted”. And they’ll pay the price for it.

    They will be the perfect target for police raids and regional courts. I’m quite sure few other alien groups will fall through the ethnic and professional grid. Therefore the negative impact for the host countries in my opinion is almost inexistent. As for benefits there will be plenty of highly qualified workforces to choose from and less strain for local companies from human resource perspective.

    As for Romania and Bulgaria the things will be very different. The high skilled workers and professionals’ pool will accelerate its depletion putting more pressure on already overstretched economies and heath care systems. The level of collected taxes will also decrease the national budgets with dire consequences for the local infrastructure and services. What is the only good news for the aforementioned countries? Perhaps there will be fewer funds available for the politicians and their acolytes to steal although I’m not quite sure about that.

    Indeed, both Romanians and Bulgarians will contribute to UK’s economy and prosperity and gradually the “friendship” among locals and guest workers will improve although they will be seldom accepted as part of the society. They will be there to do their job, get paid for; they’ll pay their taxes and keep a low profile within the civil society.

    Good for the UK! Congratulations, I sincerely mean it because it deserves it. It has the economic power, social infrastructure and the wisdom to absorb desirable human resources to push the country forward.

    The “core” Europe, UK and Scandinavian states will ride the recession waves as the Eastern Europe periphery will continue to sink in depression, low wages, unemployment and lower living standards for the majority of its populace.

    • Marcel spune:

      Outstanding comment! It speaks well for your knowledge and erudition; it puts you well above the norm.

      • north of 60 spune:

        I posted the “optimistic” picture Marcel: the reality for the Romanians remaining within the country’s border will be much grimmer than we would expect. The jig is up, is that simple! Two decades of gross mismanagement, incompetence, nationwide theft and corruption are among the ingredients that eroded and damaged the edifice named Romania. It is simply disintegrating under our own eyes.

        There is no such thing as the new political class and the subsequent administrative apparatus. There are simply no desirable human archetypes to man the jobs; the very civic spine is missing.

        The solution is entrenched in time. It is not what we want; unfortunately there is nothing else to be done nowadays. The meager pension captive older generation will pass away: their vote is crucial today and repeatedly had triggered dire consequences in political, economic and social terms.

        How long it will take? I’m not sure, it’s hard to say, there are too many variables at play. Personally I believe we’ll be dealing with decades. Sorry for the bad news…

    • AlinL spune:

      I have no doubt that the skilled emigration considered the Romanian economy on the short and medium term will stagnate. However, there is technological progress enabling new ways of bringing change about. It is down to all of us to look back and give a helping hand to our country. Watch the Romanian Internet. Good things are coming…there is work in progress.

    • Julian Ross White Horse Pilgrim spune:

      I really appreciate such a long and thoughtful comment. Thank you.

      You make the vital point that Romania is a young country. We allow our youth to explore the world, try things out, test their judgement, learn new skills and develop ambition. So the younger nations need to be given freedom, congratulated over successes and allowed to make mistakes. In many ways the EU has provided that freedom, giving money and allowing access to export and labour markets. We also set boundaries to our young, explaining why these are necessary. To some degree the EU has done this, at least in terms of exporting laws and regulations, though the need for these doesn’t always seem to be explained. But at least Romanian – and Bulgaria – are being given a chance. In a recent essay the late Tony Judt – an insightful commentator on Romania – expressed the opinion that the current decade may be Romania’s last chance to integrate with Europe. I think that he is right. The era of plentiful funding seems to be over. But also this is Romania’s best chance – Europe is more generous and less exploitative than Austro-Hungary, Ottoman Turkey or either Tsarist or Soviet Russia were.

      I wonder how long that adolescence will last? I suspect that, returning to Romania after a few years gap, I will find much that has changed. And how will identity be forged? Of course there’s the era of Stefan cel Mare et al to look back to. Since then, Romanian history has been a matter of survival much of the time. Romanian culture has been condemned by foreign overlords and misrepresented by fascist and communist propagandists. I think that Romanians may have to make some more history for themselves in order to nurture that identity. That could be good – rediscovered resilience, flexibility and hard work added to traditional hospitality, family values and spirituality makes a great combination. But it does challenge friends and neighbours within Europe to give Romanians time and space to make those discoveries.

      As for boundaries, yes, these need to be set for the leaders. (One could say much the same about Britain’s political and financial leaders!) I maintain that the core of Europe’s wider crisis is moral, and that those in charge need to set an example. Cracking down on the small guy trying to make a living is aiming for the wrong target.

      You may underestimate the impact of remittances. As Romanians expand into the UK economy and begin to prosper, a lot of money could be sent back home. That’s been the case with the Mediterranean nations. As you rightly say, that money by-passes the corrupt elite. I hope that this money nurtures genuine new businesses and that, over time, Romanians return to their homeland with fresh skills keen to develop their nation. There was a time when Germans, Austrians, Czechs, Poles and others went to Romania because of its abundant resources. Communism may have impoverished Romania, however it doesn’t have to be poor.

      • North of 60 spune:

        You’re welcome. Indeed both Romania and Bulgaria have been given a chance to override historical steps and neatly integrate within the European construct. Tony Judt was right although he made his predictions more than a decade ago: the current decade is the last chance Romania and Bulgaria could integrate within the European architecture. Unfortunately the current decade seems awfully short. We are dealing with populace and the December 2000 déjà vu between Iliescu and Vadim Tudor is back on the stage. There are very few options for the electorate and they are no good.

        The irresponsible geo-political decisions the political leaders in Romania are making are staggering. The recent intention to swing the country’s helm towards whoever pays more and asks no questions on how the money was spent (November’s Central and Eastern European summit in Bucharest) had triggered lots of red flags in Brussels. Bucharest is willing to change sides with little notice in order to preserve the political power and personal privileges.

        Time is running short for Romania Mr. Ross. Awfully short I’m afraid. It might not be up to the Romanians to make wise decisions. It could be that we’ll be stumbling upon tracks and jump in the wrong car as we did so many times in our history due to geo-political external pressure and the spineless attitude of our leaders.

        • cuman spune:

          democratia o face clasa politica si este facuta prin politicieni.
          asta e adevarul.
          romanii inca nu au invatat asta. o data la 4 ani aleg o fauna de cea mai joasa speta.
          nici nu ar avea cum, din moment ce aceia care sunt pe liste sunt impusi de catre fauna aleasa anterior. si tot asa.

          exista posibilitatea ca in timp romanii sa inteleaga faptul ca o clasa politica ( in integritatea ei, asa cum este acum) corupta, lacoma,rapace si profund ipocrita nu poate sa produca democratie.

          pina atunci insa mai avem.
          cu 2 pungi ( una cu zahar si alta cu ulei), 50 de lei si pliante inca se mai pot cumpara voturi si poti ajunge in parlament.asta e situatia acum.
          cu o numaratoare “adevarata” inca se mai pot manipula alegeri.

    • cuman spune:

      @north of 60

      “What we call Romania today is a very young construct about 100 years old”.
      Nu cred ca intelegi cam ce inseamna o natiune si cum a fost intemeiata natiunea romana.Poate iti faci timp sa mai studiezi putin ce defineste o natiune.
      Ai putea preciza cand si cum a aparut limba romana?De cat timp sa vorbeste limba romana si unde a fost vorbita initial? Incearca un raspuns.Poate afli dupa asta si cum a fost facuta natiunea despre care iti dai cu parerea.

      Recunosc ca nu am avut norocul britanicilor , sa fim inconjurati de ape si sa nu reuseasca nimeni timp de 1000 de ani sa cotropeasca teritoriile.

      “The Romanians are very much a nation still in need of defining its own identity.”

      Cred ca Sir Winston Churchill ti-ar putea spune ce inseamna asta avind 50 de ani de ocupatie comunista la origine ruseasca.A contribuit si Sir Winston Churchill din plin la asta.Regretele sunt tardive. Eu unul nu il voi ierta pentru faptul ca ne-a lasat pe mina lor.

      In urma venirii comunismului aici INTREAGA elita intelectuala si TOTI proprietarii au fost decimati.
      Fa un exercitiu de gandire si incearca sa realizezi ca ar face UK daca s-ar intampla asa ceva la ei.
      Pare incredibil ca am ajuns asa astazi, nu?

      “for a gipsy is so easy to break the law because through their culture and low work skills they have very few options to remain within the law”

      as fi curios cum te-ai fi descurcat ca tigan, si ce optiuni ai fi avut in conditiile de aici.nu lipsa eductatiei si nici lipsa calificarilor te scot in afara legii.aici esti mult pe linga logica.
      lipsa de optiuni si de sanse ii face sa devina proscrisi.ma repet, oricat ai fi de inteligent, as fi curios cum te-ai fi descurcat cu stampila de tigan pe frunte, pe cartea de identitate( daca ai fi avut) si pe viata in general.

      “Good for the UK! Congratulations, I sincerely mean it because it deserves it. It has the economic power, social infrastructure and the wisdom to absorb desirable human resources to push the country forward.”

      N-as crede.La ultimele inundatii in UK zile intregi zeci de mii de britanici au facut craciunul cu casa inundata si fara posibilitatea sa vada vreo reactie notabila din partea guvernului Cameron.
      Asta e adevaratul economic power?
      Ce spui face parte din orgoliul britanic insa e pura declaratie, doar ca sa te imbarbatezi un pic.Mai bine ai spune cati britanici pleaca anual din UK…:)))).

      Cheers

      • North of 60 spune:

        Imi mentin afirmatiile: Romania este un stat tanar, constituit dupa conferinta de pace de la Paris in 1919. Multumesc Regina Maria, odihneste in pace! Regina l-a santajat pe Wilson pana cand a obtinut Transilvania: am citit pana si corespondenta privata dintre cei doi. Nici o tzara europeana la vremea aceea nu a dorit sa cedeze Transilvania Romaniei. Ar fi trebuit sa folosesc termenul de “stat national unitar” ca sa poti digera conceptul.

        Exista doua teorii care definesc originea poporului roman: teoria continuitatii (pe care pana si comunistii ne-au bagat-o in cap pe vremuri) si teoria transcendentei. Te las pe tine sa le studiezi ca apoi sa putem avea o discutie pe aceasta tema.

        Confunzi grav termenul de “natiune” cu cel de “popor”. citeste, documenteaza-te si apoi emite pareri.

        Faptul ca il urasti pe Churchill cu pasiune nu incalzeste pe nimeni, nici macar pe Churchill. Omul a luptat pentru Imperiul Britanic, a castigat un razboi dur de tot dar a pierdut imperiul. Lasa-i pe britanici sa-l judece, este problema lor.

        Te asigur ca am cunoscut tigani atat in Romania cat si in America de Nord care au facut cariera, sunt oameni exceptionali si cu care am lucrat, colaborat sau avut relatii de prietenie. Pentru ca au avut sansa sa-si construiasca o cariera. Asa ca stampila de tigan pe frunte poti sa ti-o pastrezi si incearca sa-i lamuresti pe altii.

        Faptul ca zeci de mii de brits au stat in apa zile in sir nu inseamna ca poti sa pui egal intre guvernul britanic si cel roman. Faptul ca sute de mii de oameni in Toronto au stat fara electricitate mai bine de o saptamana in urma unei ice rain nu inseamna ca guvernul canadian este egal cu cel roman (desi nu sunt un admirator a lui Harper deloc).

        evident nu iubesti deloc guvernul britanic. este dreptul tau, nu stiu, nu traiesc in UK si nici nu sunt foarte la curent cu ce invarte Cameron in perfidul Albion. Este problema lui si a ta.
        Dar stiu ca britanicii au o cultura solida, o traditie democratica si mai solida si au platit acest pret in sange pentru multe generatii. Si-au construit un colonialism mult mai inteligent decat alte state europene, si au stiut cand sa cedeze cu pierderi minime: francezii, olandezii si belgienii au facut exact pe dos.

        Cat despre migratia britanicilor, asta se practica de secole. Acelasi lucru se poate spune despre australienii care vin in Canada, canadienii care merg in USA, nemtii care vin in Canada, americani care pleaca sa munceasca in China, etc. Se numeste globalizare, skill-urile sunt globale si la fel oportunitatile pentru employment.

        • cuman spune:

          @north of 60

          Ar fi trebuit sa stii ca Scrisoarea lui Neacsu de la Campulung e cel mai vechi document pastrat scris in limba romana.Poti studia in acest sens.Din 1521 pina acum e mult timp.Asta ar insemna ca originea limbii romane este inaintea documentului asta.

          Prin națiune se înțelege:
          Comunitate stabilă de oameni, istoricește constituită ca stat, apărută pe baza unității de limbă, de teritoriu, de viață economică și de factură psihică, care se manifestă în particularități specifice ale culturii naționale și în conștiința originii și a sorții comune. (DEX ’98).
          Comunitate stabilă de oameni constituită istoricește și apărută pe baza unității de limbă, de teritoriu, de viață economică și de factură psihică, manifestate în particularitățile specifice ale culturii. (NODEX)

          Nu am mentionat nimic despre popor sau statul national roman, ci doar despre natiune.

          Inteleg ca in Canada exista first nation.Daca te afli in Canada, cei ca tine s-ar chema second nation?…:)))….ce ar insemna natiunea si conceptul de natiune in Canada?
          Nu mai prelua ideile altora, incearca sa iti conturezi singur propriile convingeri.

          Habar nu ai cum a fost impartita lumea si ce puterea avea Sir Winston Churchill :

          Perhaps the person best placed to summarise Churchill’s contradictory motivations and flawed character during the war was the man who arguably worked most closely with him throughout most of the conflict, the Chief of the Imperial General Staff (CIGS) from December 1941 on, Field Marshall Alan Brooke. His diary entry for 10 September 1944, is particularly revealing :

          “… And the wonderful thing is that 3/4 of the population of the world imagine that Churchill is one of the Strategists of History, a second Marlborough, and the other 1/4 have no idea what a public menace he is and has been throughout this war! It is far better that the world should never know, and never suspect the feet of clay of this otherwise superhuman being. Without him England was lost for a certainty, with him England has been on the verge of disaster time and again … Never have I admired and despised a man simultaneously to the same extent. Never have such opposite extremes been combined in the same human being.”

          “Faptul ca zeci de mii de brits au stat in apa zile in sir nu inseamna ca poti sa pui egal intre guvernul britanic si cel roman”- nici nu am spus asta, de unde ai scos-o????? twisted for real….

          ai dat exemplu de putere economica UK-ul , ce putere economica isi lasa cetatenii in apa pina la brau zile intregi fara sa se intereseze de soarta lor?

  11. r2 spune:

    Julian, many thanks for taking the time to write this article and for sharing it with us here on Contributors. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading it. I have to disagree on a couple of things, but these are the kind of disagreements that I am happy to have. But first let me tell you that I am one of the Romanians who 24 years ago were lucky enough to speak to some of those lorry-driving Brits bringing help to our country (by some fortunate accident I could already speak some English). Some of those people have become lifelong friends. Although we’ve been living thousands of miles apart for most of this time, we always keep in contact and still meet whenever we can. I still consider some of those people as family.

    The people I met weren’t set on saving our lost souls with the help of financial incentives. They weren’t planning to make us be like them either. And for sure they were not themselves living in the land of the plenty. They were just warm, kind people, and just great people to be with and chat over a beer. And they have staid that way over the years. Sadly some have passed away since, but their children are now older. I can only wish for this friendship to continue over time. It’s the kindness these people have shown to us that we can’t thank them enough for. Every country has its highly educated elites, but I believe it’s the common people like them that make a nation truly great. (sorry for the big words)

    As for the part where I have to disagree with you, you seem to call into question the moral value of the acts where help is offered conditionally. The denominationally affiliated school or bakery that would offer something on condition that you become a baptist, and the very interesting comparison with the EU, doing the same thing. I am not religious myself, but would not dismiss the moral value of such acts. As far as their intention goes, it is probably noble. The religious sects want to save souls, and in their view of the world, this is probably the best thing they can want for anybody. Arguably their view of the world might be a bit inadequate to our times. But even so, who knows, they probably saved many poor souls that nobody else would have, and not in the religious way (more than those who mostly sell their religious services in exchange for hard cash, for instance, no naming names).

    And for the EU helping us on condition that we transform our country into the image of a modern European nation, with less corruption and better roads, even more so there is value in such conditions. I, for one, am happy that this is what they want for us, as opposed to other political models that others have wanted for us in the past. In general, my view is that conditional help is better than no help, and not only that, depending on the condition itself, such help is probably be the best kind of help there is. In the end, we owe to people we want to help our best judgement, not unconditional support (I think a famous Whig once said something along these lines).

    It is probably true that the EU don’t understand our situation well enough, but I for one can’t see what they could have done better had they known more. I agree that what has been tried is not working well enough, and can’t work well enough, but I struggle to see what it is that could have worked better or will work better.

    As for the attitude towards Romanians and Bulgarians, I think we Romanians can’t expect of others more than we would be willing to offer ourselves in a similar situation. We probably are friendlier to foreign workers in our country because there are only so few of them, and are not known for causing trouble. But every know and then there is talk in the media of bringing in cheaper labour from China to man our factories, and whenever that happens, we are equally unwelcoming. Discrimination does exist and it’s a regrettable fact. It does bother me that some people in Europe change their look on their face when you tell them the name of your country. This is why I prefer other continents. But it’s usually the kind of people of you can’t expect much of anyway who do that. Overall I hope that economist article turns out to be right and things will work out much better than feared.

    Once again, many thanks for your article.

    • Julian Ross White Horse Pilgrim spune:

      Thank you for a thoughtful comment and, yes, you’re most welcome to disagree.

      I might have generalised about aid groups. Those that I encountered were almost all religious. You’re right that we should not dismiss good intentions lightly. A lot of people travelled far to help Romania – and were welcomed openly by Romanians who became their friends.

      At risk of generalising again, our fundraising publicity back in 1990 established the link in British minds between “Romania” and “poverty”. Worse, the suggestion was made that Romanian people “had allowed the orphanages to happen”. We know that ordinary people had no power under the Ceausescu regime. We know that some orphanages were well run by decent Romanian people – I visited several like that in 1990. But we in the West created the impression that Romania was a morally questionable nation. Those of us who were there, and involved, have a responsibility to tell the truth.

      There is an analogy between some of those groups and the EU in that both thought, rather simplistically, that handing over money (or goods) and ideology would quickly resolve problems. But Romania is a young country, traumatised by events beyond the control of its population. Growth and healing require time. We were impatient.

      It might be argued that the EU officials spent too much time talking with their counterparts in the Romanian state and so missed reality “on the ground”. That is to be expected, how else could they do their jobs? At least they came. Those of us who visited had the pleasure of meeting ordinary people, and it was for us to open our eyes. In our defence, few of us had encountered the wreckage of state socialism, and that was bewildering. It was hard to see how Romania functioned back in 1990. Even the information people gave us – what they earned versus what things cost to buy – didn’t seem to make sense. Of course life went on, it was just that we took our time to understand it.

      You’re right, the process of making a nation look like an idealised model – with nice roads and humane laws, for example – will bring the nation closer to that model. One can’t argue with a smooth road (though if the asphalt breaks up next winter we might have something to say…) Of course it offers the ruling elite the chance to dress the windows of the store – to create Potemkin villages. But when people assemble outside the store, the seeds of an idea have been sown.

      Nevertheless, having been through the process of applying for EU grants in Romania, I maintain that greater supervision should have been exercised. In my opinion the EU was careless in its generosity, whilst correct in being generous. Much the same might be said about the EU in Greece.

      Finally, it would be absurd to bring Chinese workers to Romania – exploiting the Chinese, greedy (it’s all about increasing profits), and disrespectful to Romanian workers (who certainly aren’t over-paid). That doesn’t have to become a racial issue. It’s a matter of saying “enough” to exploitation that does nothing for either of our nations.

  12. Lupul Monarhist spune:

    Quite a medley of ideas and impressions based on a Brit’s live experience in Romania! The article definitely needs some serious scrubbing to get its message across in a better fashion. Nonetheless, the author is well-intentioned and tries to dismantle the prejudice that (a part of) British media has been promoting about Romanian and Bulgarian nationals.

    I disagree on the matter of “shock therapy” futility when applied in the former communist East-European countries starting 1990. Many economists consider that the countries that did indeed apply bold economic reforms at the beginning ’90 are better off today than the ones that delayed the process due to social concerns or political reasons. Take a quick look at Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Slovenia… the recession that affected the entire world starting 2008 barely touched those countries economies. There was no shock therapy when it comes to Romanian economy. There was pure pillage orchestrated by the former communist party elite and security police officers.

    The final of the article saves the day: Friends tell the truth. They offer criticism as well as support. Friends develop the maturity to stick together. They learn about what makes the other tick. Friends give as much as they take, or even more. They grow in partnership. Friends can be different in character, age and experience, but they share mutual respect. They learn from one-another. Friendship could be good for both Britain and Romania.
    Happy New Year to everyone!
    Succese nebanuite si fericire exagerata la toata lumea!

  13. Emil Stoica spune:

    Congratulations for a long, but very articulate argument made in this article.

  14. iosiP spune:

    It’s kind of funny to see that most comments (including mine, BTW) are in English!
    This proves we Romanians are still afflicted by a second-grade citizen complex, so we prefer to use the author’s English rather than our genuine Romanian language in order to discuss what are, basically, our own problems.
    No (further) comments…

    • North of 60 spune:

      I don’t think it’s funny at all. It’s simply called courtesy. The author published the article in English. Please keep in mind he’s British and we do not know how advanced his Romanian language skills are. Out of politeness, most of us have replied in English.

      This has nothing to do with any inferiority complex or second class citizens. But it has everything to do with common-sense. I hope you would be able to grasp what I’m trying to suggest.

      • cuman spune:

        @north of 60

        nu trebuie sa-ti fie rusine ca esti roman, nu cred ca dl Julian Ross s-ar simti lezat din cauza faptului ca sunt comentarii in limba romana( dupa 24 de ani de cunostinta cu romanii).
        este curios de ce presupui asta ,

        “I don’t think it’s funny at all. It’s simply called courtesy. The author published the article in English. Please keep in mind he’s British and we do not know how advanced his Romanian language skills are. Out of politeness, most of us have replied in English.

        This has nothing to do with any inferiority complex or second class citizens. But it has everything to do with common-sense. I hope you would be able to grasp what I’m trying to suggest.”

        din moment ce nu te-ai asigurat in privinta asta si nici nu este indicat nicaieri in articol ca este un “must”sa graiesti in engleza la comentarii…de ce incerci sa induci ” curtoazii” de astea?

  15. Crina spune:

    I don’t understand why people went to save Romania in the 90′s. I was young, about 10 years old, and the “help” we received back then were some worn clothes and expired foods and medicines that only constituted a reason for quarrel. Nowadays, Romanians need more help than they needed 25 years ago. Back then we didn’t suffer so much from hunger, unfulfilled needs and lost hopes. I think it’s unfair to say that all well prepared specialists emigrated. There are plenty of very well prepared people who live in Romania. But many of the young people emigrated because they were unable to see any hope for the future. Some lucky ones have the good fortune of woorking in the fields they have prepared for, some others sell their dreams for money, working from dawn till dusk in low paid jobs in countries that denigrate them. I am one of them and I have no right to complain. But I’m happy that another country accepted me. I think it’s only fair for all countries to have the same rights in Europe, and for Romanians to be seen as equals to French, Spanish, British or whatever citizens of the world.

    • cuman spune:

      aici ai atins un subiect sensibil.

      niciodata un roman nu poate fi pe picior de egalitate cu un britanic.
      poti fi prieten( cum bine spune Julian Ross) sau amic, dar nu egal.
      doar daca devii cetatean britanic de origine romana( insa nici atunci nu cred ca va fi ok).

      suntem cetateni de rang 2 in fata altor membri ai Uniunii( in special britanici, germani , suedezi sau olandezi).

      explicatia nu e foarte simpla insa nici complicata. mecanismul MCV este o explicatie foarte buna a acestei diferente de rang.

  16. ordinaru spune:

    eu cred ca ideea ar trebui pusa diferit: respectiv romanii, aia care reusesc sa emigreze prin forte proprii sunt o resursa extrem de valoroasa, acolo unde ajung; acum, daca marea britanie are intelepciunea sa ii primeasca, accepte si integreze ar fi un win-win pentru ambele parti; caci pe de o parte pentru un roman e mai greu sa emigreze peste ocean, decat in europa, din punctul de vedere al posibilitatii revenirii in tara pentru a-si revedea familia si prietenii; iar pentru britanici, ar trebui sa li se explice ca sunt mai multi romani muncitori si platitori de taxe decat infractori, iar pe ansamblu, emigrantii astia care sunt denigrati le platesc ajutoarele sociale ale celor care ii denigreaza; in caz contrar, romanii vor emigra in america, canada, australia si alte continente care sunt mai tolerante din acest punct de vedere

  17. Rasvan Lalu Rasvan Lalu spune:

    Textul şi-a propus probabil să fie o pledoarie în favoarea acceptării imigraţiei româneşti în Marea Britanie. (Bizar în acest context pare faptul că textul se adresează unui public românesc, când el ar fi trebuit să se adreseze unuia britanic.)

    Autorul se recomandă pe sine ca excelent cunoscător al ţării şi oamenilor, trăind câţiva ani în România şi cunoscând problemele de la bază până la vârf. Evocându-şi experienţele româneşti, autorul nu este lipsit de accente critice la adresa unei anumite naivităţi şi schematism ale incursiunilor „de ajutorare“ făcute de el însuşi/alţi compatrioţi în anii de început.

    Pledoaria de toleranţă la adresa venirii românilor în Marea Britanie începe prin a explica că românii sunt nişte victime ale unei istorii ingrate, nedeprinşi cu binefacerile democraţiei şi controlului asupra propriei deveniri, ca în Marea Britanie. De aceea nici nu pot britanicii să-i facă pe români să devină „ca ei“, aşa de iute.

    Aderarea la UE a adus bani, de care au profitat conducătorii României, care s-au mai bucurat şi de faptul că pot scăpa de ţigani şi alţi indezirabili, plecaţi peste graniţă. În acelaşi timp însă UE nu a fost deloc sensibilă la problemele specifice românilor, lăsându-i să-şi rezolve singuri problemele generate de terapia de şoc a anilor 90, fiecare făcând-o cum poate pentru a supravieţui, domeniu în care românii sunt meşteri: conducătorii acaparând, muncitorii emigrând, ţăranii muncind pământul, ţiganii furând, etc.

    În România posibilităţile de realizare sunt reduse, nu trebuie să ne mirăm că cei ambiţioşi emigrează. De altfel românii sunt neobişnuit de adaptaţi pentru emigraţie, ei nefiind legaţi de teritoriu, ţara natală, locuri remarcabile, precum britanicii, ci având un fel de identitate “la purtator”, constând din limbă şi mituri.

    Totuşi, imigraţia e utilă economic Marii Britanii, printre muncitorii calificaţi imigranţi există şi români, chiar dacă prin emigrare britanicii privează aceste ţări de forţe calificate.

    Există similarităţi între britanici şi români, ambii îi urăsc la fel de mult pe ţigani, dar britanicii în loc să se lege direct de imigranţii ne-europeni, preferă să-i ţintească pe români. În plus, clasa ne-educată din Marea Britanie n-are de lucru nu datorită românilor, ci dintr-o trăsătură imanentă pieţei libere.

    Pledoaria se termină printr-un “emoţionant” apel la toleranţă: românii să fie totuşi lăsaţi să vină în Marea Britanie unde vor contribui la economia britanică, în timp ce britanicii ajută România să se civilizeze.

    Este un kitsch în care autorul ţine să demonstreze bune intenţii, în realitate ventilând clişee negative şi false la adresa românilor, pe fondul ignoranţei şi black PR din presa si politica britanică. Tonul este mieros, dar sub el se ascunde aroganţa şi lipsa de înţelegere a temei. În plus, textul este presărat de gugumănii.

    Câteva exemple:

    - „Those of us who brought Romanians to Britain promptly took our guests to visit massive supermarkets, smiling at their wide eyes and tears. And now we’re surprised that Romanians want to live and work in Britain?“ – adică, i-am adus pe români în anii 90 să se minuneze de supermarketuri, ce să te miri că acum (2014) năvălesc peste noi ?

    - „And the ‘undesirables’ would leave – with Roma at the top of the list – to become someone else’s problem.“ – clişeul idiot, vânturat în occident, că românii îi alungă pe ţigani afară din ţară.
    „Roma collected scrap metal, begged and stole…“ – clişeul ţiganilor infractori per se

    - „As a national group they survived centuries of oppressive Ottoman and Habsburg domination“ – autorul ştie istoria românilor

    - „Until then most Romanians were second-class citizens within someone else’s empire“ – altă gugumănie istorică

    – „But what would those do whose ancestors possessed neither land nor property?“ – adică, restituirea proprietăţilor a fost bună, da’ de ce nu s-a dat pamânt şi celor care n-aveau ?! Aşa, ca în Marea Britanie ?

    - „I believe that Romanians are unusually well adapted for emigration. As I see it, the essence of Romanian national identity is based upon language and myth – in the ethnographic sense of the word – which a person can carry in his or her head. It’s not rooted within historic places and celebrated landscapes like our traditional British identity.“ – aceasta este bomboana pe coliva, bijuteria textului, contribuţia originală a autorului la teoria culturii române, urmată de concluzia generală: „So it’s easier to leave, carrying national identity“

    - „The British don’t want Roma – or anyone ‘undeserving’ – to receive money from the social security system funded by our taxes. ity within“ – alt clişeu mincinos şi prostesc prezent în presa britanică

    - „So, let’s accept that Romanians will come to live and work in Britain“ – un îndemn bazat pe o realitate inexistentă, aceea a vreunui flux semnificativ de români spre UK

    - „Romanians contributing to the British economy whilst Britain – consciously and deliberately – helps Romania to strengthen its society and public institutions.“ – o adevărată quintesenţă a aroganţei

    Ce este fals în textul discutat ?

    În primul rând premisa unui flux important de români spre Marea Britanie. Plecând de la această premisă absolut falsă şi construită în scopuri electorale de cele mai reacţionare aripi ale politicii şi presei britanice, textul pledează pentru toleranţă faţă de un non-eveniment (emigrarea în masă a românilor spre Marea Britanie), folosind argumente ridicole (propensiunea identitară a românilor spre emigraţie), ignorante (istoria neagră a românilor) sau reluând stereotipele cele mai dezgustătoare (ţiganii – infractori prin definiţie, profitori ai sistemului social britanic).

    Când de un an încheiat asistăm în Marea Britanie la un pogrom mediatic anti-românesc de o intensitate şi ferocitate fără precedent în vreo ţară europeană din ultimii 70 de ani, tot ce găseşte de cuviinţă acest text, este să îndemne britanicii la toleranţă faţă de inexistenta invazie românească. Este cunoscutul demers împăciutorist, care încercă să şteargă diferenţele dintre victimă şi agresor, îndemnându-i pe ambii să fie prieteni. În fond este un sprijin moral dat agresorului, sub masca îndemnului la “pace si prietenie între popoare”.

    Există două aspecte criticabile în acest text: cel factual şi cel moral.

    Factual, textul se bazează pe un eveniment inexistent (imigraţia românească masivă în UK) pentru a „implora clemenţă“ în favoarea românilor.

    Moral, pledoaria pentru „toleranţă“ este discutabilă. Toleranţa presupune întotdeauna un raport asimetric, în care tolerantul concede toleratului nişte drepturi, pe care de altfel, oricând i le poate retrage. Toleranţa implică aroganţă. Românii nu de toleranţa străinilor au nevoie, ci de respect şi de tratament egal. Or, din tot acest text respiră o atitudine condescendentă pe care autorul nici nu se osteneşte să şi-o ascundă.

    Nu exclud nici un moment că acest text ar fi fost redactat cu bune intenţii. Consider însă că ce a rezultat a trădat aceste intenţii, contribuind de fapt la perpetuarea falselor reprezentări şi a necunoaşterii.

    • Lupul Monarhist spune:

      “Când de un an încheiat asistăm în Marea Britanie la un pogrom mediatic anti-românesc de o intensitate şi ferocitate fără precedent în vreo ţară europeană din ultimii 70 de ani, tot ce găseşte de cuviinţă acest text, este să îndemne britanicii la toleranţă faţă de inexistenta invazie românească. Este cunoscutul demers împăciutorist, care încercă să şteargă diferenţele dintre victimă şi agresor, îndemnându-i pe ambii să fie prieteni. În fond este un sprijin moral dat agresorului, sub masca îndemnului la “pace si prietenie între popoare”.

      Problema dvs. D-le Lalu este refuzul de a intelege ca si in Marea Britanie exista jurnalisti ignoranti, neinstruiti si dispusi sa isi puna serviciile la dispozitia politicienilor populisti. Ca de altfel in intrega lume. Generalizati josnicia tabloidelor la intreaga presa si societate britanica. Nu este o lume perfecta. Fara indoiala, lucrurile bune sunt inmiit mai multe decat cele ce displac. Societatea britanica este cea mai toleranta in privinta strainilor. Cei care se integreaza sunt bine primiti pentru ca isi aduc contributia la bunul mers al economiei. Sa presupunem ca ati fi cetatean britanic: cum ati privi imigrantii care NU se integreaza, lucreaza sistemul social si se comporta necivilizat? Romanii sunt star-uri in spargerile de bancomate din Marea Britanie. Nu mai amintesc de cei care isi fac nevoile prin parcurile centrale din Londra sau isi spala lucrurile in fantanile de la Trafalgar Square.

      Autorul articolului a insirat niste ganduri si nimic mai mult. O opinie. Si e bine intentionat. Cum alti comentatori v-au recomandat e sanatos sa il cititi in limba engleza textul, nu in limba romana. V-am citit si comentariile de pe editia online din The Economist si opiniile dvs. erau mai moderate, mai aproape de realitate. Constat cu dezamagire ca reveniti in forta si ati dezvoltat o mica obsesie cu acest subiect. Faceti un munte dintr-o movila de pamant. Cu bine.

      • Rasvan Lalu Rasvan Lalu spune:

        1. Campania anti-românească din MB nu este perpetrată doar de „jurnalistii ignoranti, neinstruiti si dispusi sa isi puna serviciile la dispozitia politicienilor populisti ai tabloidelor josnice“, ci este coordonată la nivelul întregului establishment politic britanic, preluată cu ton mai măsurat chiar şi de media „onorabilă“ britanică (BBC, sporadic Times, etc.) având efecte considerabile în opinia publică. Mai mult, instrumentalizarea românilor în scopuri electorale prin fabricarea unor pericole inexistente a făcut şcoală, fiind acum preluată şi de CSU, un partid regional bavarez, situat la marginea de dreapta al establishmentului german. Este un fenomen mult mai extins şi mai grav decât îl prezentaţi dvs.

        Nu discut acum responsabilităţile conducătorilor români din ţară, care prin activităţile lor barbare au fragilizat România, făcând-o ţintă uşoară pentru oricine din Europa care are nevoie de ţapi ispăşitori.

        Fapt este, că avem de-a face cu o campanie anti-românească la nivel european, cu consecinţe potenţiale extrem de pernicioase pentru români şi România.

        2. Românii din străinătate, inclusiv cei din MB, au o contribuţie netă la bunăstarea naţională a ţărilor gazdă mai mult decât pozitivă, atât în termeni fiscali, cât şi în termeni macro-economici şi sociali. Cât despre criminalitate, nici aici românii nu întrec măsura. Există episoade tranzitorii de mică criminalitate pe arealuri restrânse (Paris-centru, vara, anumite oraşe germane, în perioada Adventului), care nici pe departe nu justifică diabolizarea pauşală a românilor, pe care păreţi că o împărtăşiţi.

        Semnalaţi statistici nefiabile: cei “90% din români vinovaţi de spargerile ATM” reprezintă o statistică trunchiată şi manipulativă prezentată de Daily Mail & Co. Cât despre românii care defechează în parcuri, este un argument mult sub nivelul dvs. (Orgiile alcoolice de vineri seară ale britanicilor nativi, soldate cu revărsări de vomă, urină şi fecale în spaţiul public, par să nu vă deranjeze. Oricum, aţi coborât prea mult nivelul, invocând această infamie de presă la adresa românilor)

        3. Am subliniat că sunt convins de buna-credinţă a autorului. Am considerat însă textul prezentat drept foarte reprezentativ pentru atitudinea britanicilor binevoitori faţă de România: tutorial, condescendent, în fond foarte arogant, acceptând tacit cascada de infamii nedrepte la adresa românilor, dar scuzându-le cu largheţe colonială. Această atitudine o critic, nu persoana acestui fost imigrant britanic.

        4. Sincer nu înţeleg cum este cu citirea în limba engleză a textului, şi nu în română. Poţi citi în română un text scris în engleză ? E prea subtil. Dacă vă referiţi la cheia de interpretate atextului, aceasta este … personală, nici română, nici engleză. Râmân nelămurit asupra acestui punct.

        5. Nu voi înceta să atrag atenţia asupra progromului mediatic anti-românesc. Reacţia românilor înşişi la această campanie scelerată se întâlneşte la extreme: fie provincialism complexat şi lacheism, fie râgâieli naţionaliste şi parapon patriotard. Este nevoie de o reacţie ponderată, dar fermă.

  18. Lupul Monarhist spune:

    Dl. Lalu:

    In primul rand multumesc pentru raspuns.

    1. “Fapt este, că avem de-a face cu o campanie anti-românească la nivel european, cu consecinţe potenţiale extrem de pernicioase pentru români şi România.”
    Poate gresesc, dar cred ca usor-usor o luati pe calea Teoriei Conspiratiei. No offense! :-)

    2. Nu m-ati inteles. Nu impartasesc diabolizarea romanilor imigranti de catre o anumita parte a presei din Marea Britanie. Dar cifrele oficiale indica faptul ca foarte multi cetateni romani comit crime in Regatul Unit. Nu m-am referit la “92% din spargerile de bancomate sunt comise de romani si bulgari”, afirmatie aparuta initial in Express si care NU are nicun fel de acoperire. Procentul este exagerat. Fara indoiala, una dintre cele mai preferate activitati criminale in randul imigrantilor romani (cei care comit astfel de lucruri) este spargerea bancomatelor. Lucru confirmat de fosti colegi de facultate, stabiliti in MB, care au dobandit cetatenie britanica. In plus, conform statisticilor Politiei Metropolitane, cetatenii romani au fost implicati in 28.000 de arestari in ultimii cinci ani. Este un numar relativ mare considerand numarul total al imigrantilor romani, estimat undeva la 100.000.

    Sigur ca m-ar deranja orgiile alcoolice ale britanicilor. N-am prea asistat la astfel de episoade nici cat am locuit in Romania, nici de aproape 20 de ani de cat timp locuiesc in SUA. Singura ocaziei cand am vazut o astfel de inclestare, adica o betie crunta britanica – je suis désolé, sans urine et de vomi – a fost in Spania, cu ani in urma. Repet, sunt oameni si oameni. Orgii alcoolice exista si in Germania si in Romania si in Statele Unite. Eu le gasesc la fel de urate indiferent de localtia de pe mapamond.

    3. Nu este un text arogant. Numai faptul ca folositi “larghete coloniala” tradeaza un ton malitios si predispozitia dvs. de a va rafui online cu orice britanic care are o parere despre Romania si romani. Neutra, buna sau rea.

    4. Asa, cu citirea in limba engleza. Incerc sa va lamuresc… in orice limbaj de comunicare, exista sintagme care, pe langa mesajul direct, transmit si anumite trairi, stabilesc un anumit ton si atmosfera. Uneori, astfel de lucruri se pierd prin traducere. Traind in lumea anglo-saxona de 20 de ani am inceput sa mai dibuiesc astfel de nuante. De departe nu sunt expert lingvist, dar judecand mesajul primului dvs. comentariu inclin sa cred ca dvs. nu le-ati perceput in intregime.

    5. Sper ca nu fac parte din nicio extrema pe care o pomeniti. Oricum, chiar daca ma considerati “provincial si lacheu” nu ma supar pentru ca blogurile suporta multe. Daca dvs. sustineti ca ce ati scris mai sus are un ton ponderat folosind termeni ca “pogrom mediatic” si generalizand la modul cel mai grosier etc. atunci eu ma numesc Snoopy. Opinia mea este sa transmiteti ce transmiteti ziaristilor de la Daily Mail and Co. si tuturor celor care promoveaza astfel de zvonuri si dezinformeaza in mod deliberat pe tema imigrantilor romani. Poate ca e potrivit sa va recalibrati pozitia in legatura cu ex-patii britanici care isi expun o simpla opinie si nimic mai mult.

    Din cati britanici am cunoscut (am cunoscut si cunosc suficienti)… (1) niciunul nu mi-a reporosat ca sunt etnic roman. (2) am fost invitat in nenumarate randuri sa particip la evenimente din cadrul familiilor lor: cununi, aniversari, botezuri, sarbatori. (3) au fost bineveniti in casa mea si mi-au respectat familia cum ii respecta si pe altii. (4) niciunul nu a avut vreun comentariu rautacios sau dispretuitor fata de Romania.

    Cu bine!



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Julian first visited Romania early in 1990, driving an aid lorry to Botosani. He quickly came to love Romania and began to explore the country, travelling by bicycle from Turnu-Sev... Citeste mai departe


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