Post-conflict governing is never easy. But there is a sense of hope, until there isn’t.
Long after the war ended, I came back. I was excited – to see change and hope and a vision for the future. The changes I have witnessed, however, are very disillusioning…
I see your flags and I see your posters and I see your many dilapidated cars and trucks roaming the streets carrying idle men, smoking, waving flags and looking smug. And I wonder, who do you think you are?
I see nothing to be proud of – no obvious achievements by your government in the years I’ve been away – I see poorer people and streets and highways in disrepair. I see more corruption and degradation of the environment. I see your smug faces, men swaggering around like the world owes them something – everything – like feudal lords.
I want to ask you, as I borrow the words of the pre-eminent political commentator of our times, Jon Stewart, what makes you think you own this land? This government? These people? You fought a war and, yes, you came out ahead. You formed a political party to carry on fighting the good fight in a constructive way. Except I see nothing constructive.
I see millions wasted on a political ‘palace’ that sits empty – an embarrassing reminder that you know nothing of governing and think only of symbols of a victory you never really had.
I see politicians pretending to be giants, spending their time intimidating the population into a proverbial corner, in order to hoard their winnings and reward themselves.
I see no evidence of efforts to develop the country, to fulfill the promise of peace, to increase the standard and quality of living of the everyday person.
Instead I see more cafes than I can count, filled with men boasting of their glory days, their only hobbies strutting around town with chests puffed out. They need real jobs – passions – that force them to contribute constructively to society. Lazy assed people are a drain on your country, and your braggadocious ways enable rather than counter that.
Let me tell you this: stop acting like you ‘own’ this place. You never have and it’s never been yours. You chose to fight and you chose to make peace, and now you’ve chosen to share a bed with your former enemy. You have no right to intimidate, to threaten, to commit violence against those who want to see the community grow, to be better, to ensure a better future for their children. You need to get over yourselves – you have offered nothing. There are people who have worked harder, who have sacrificed more, for the country’s future. They can do better, and quite easily. You’ve set the bar pretty low.