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As for Poland, you must understand, that there is a lot of common history of both countries. Here is a gif that shows the development of polish borders. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Territorial-changes-of-Poland-1635-2009-small.gif#/media/File:Territorial-changes-of-Poland-1635-2009-small.gif that will explain a lot I hope.

The fact is, that a part of Ukraine belonged to Poland until the end of WWII. There are lot of Poles living in Ukraine, there are many people in Poland that were living on the Ukrainian territory before it was taken by Soviet Union. (My mom was born in Lviv and fled with her family at the age of 12.) Many Ukrainians live and work in Poland now, having families on the other side of the border. The language is quite similar, obviously many people living in Ukraine know Polish.
There were also some dark chapters with Ukrainian separatists siding with Hitler, but now the positives seem to be more present.

So much for the history.
It doesn't mean, I'm not bothered by the obvious difference in treating Ukrainian refugees differently in the whole Europe and that there are obviously better and worse kinds of refugees. Maybe people think that it all would be over soon, that it's only women and children, and they intend to go back asap. I'm afraid that if the war will go on for longer, the attitude might change.

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On 3/5/2022 at 12:44 AM, DistantView said:

I have a friend who lives in Ukraine. I haven't spoken to him since Wednesday so hopefully he's still okay. 

Hope he is okay, it's getting direr now.

14 hours ago, Fantasy Lover said:

I'm not going to translate the entire article, but only the gist of it. It wonders where the solidarity was for the people in Syria or Afghanistan. Is it because its closer than the aforementioned countries? Is it because the inhabitants of the countries are people of colour? Is it because those countries are "uncivilised"? 

One thing is always constant, politicians always look out for their own safety/benefit, whether it's logistic, borders, future threats or economical gains. If they are deemed 'not valuable', no one would care.  It's the cold hard truth, imo. 

Also, we humans, have short term interest and memory. Take a look at a plane crash, it would be all over the news, people tune in every minute to find out about the progress, give it couple of weeks, no one really bothers about the contain of the black box anymore. For now, Ukraine is fresh, it is almost a 'trend', disturbingly, while most have probably forgotten that there are still wars everywhere else. Ukraine is also very important, especially to Russia, with the pipe gas, natural resources and the proximity with the west. This is a loooong time built-up.

  

8 hours ago, J.P. said:

Maybe people think that it all would be over soon, that it's only women and children, and they intend to go back asap. I'm afraid that if the war will go on for longer, the attitude might change.

I am certain it will change, unless it is resolved very soon, like you said. There will be plethora of economical and social problems.

For now, at least everyone tries to do their parts, regardless of the motivations.

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  • 5 months later...

Since I presume that most of our forum is chronologically advanced enough to get it :lol: :

NkTgFVA.jpeg

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  • 1 month later...

So Lis Truss resigned, she barely lasted 2 months. I'm betting the other guy who ran for prime Minister is going to be prime Minister now. The uk is a mess right now.

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2 hours ago, Fantasy Lover said:

So Lis Truss resigned, she barely lasted 2 months. I'm betting the other guy who ran for prime Minister is going to be prime Minister now. The uk is a mess right now.

It was 6 weeks almost to the day.  She was confirmed by HMTQ on September 6.  As the last official duty performed by ERII, who I feel certain gave herself permission to let go of the reigns right afterwards, seeing as she passed a little more than 48 hours later . . what a shame that your third female PM couldn't last longer than that.  Lord knows I'm not an economist, but I do wonder if Liz is nothing more than a scapegoat here.  Usually it takes more than three weeks to entirely tank an economy, and I can't believe that everything is down to her.  She only got what, 3 audiences with the new King?  

The premiership of GB is considerably more flexible in term than the American Presidency.  Once a candidate gets into the White House, no matter how huge a disaster they are, they are guaranteed at least 4 years in office.  There is the option of impeaching a sitting President for misconduct, which is not an automatic boot from office, but merely the court proceeding to determine if he/she is guilty of the charges.  The process is so lengthy, laborious and politically charged that it's only been employed three times in our history for a President, in 1868, 1992 and 2021.  All three were acquittals.  An impeachment proceeding could easily drag out for a year or more, so in some ways, it's easier and less expensive/aggravating to the taxpayer to just let the term of office run out.

Better luck next time, Great Britain!  I could say the same thing about us across the Pond here, but I'm not optimistic.  After the election of 2020 and what came afterwards, I have not been back to the polls.  I have become a conscientious objector to the whole corrupt process of politics and am withholding my vote until someone appears who is worth voting for.

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6 hours ago, Hikari said:

I'm not an economist, but I do wonder if Liz is nothing more than a scapegoat here.  Usually it takes more than three weeks to entirely tank an economy, and I can't believe that everything is down to her.

And I'm no MP, but I do believe your suspicion is correct -- the reasons were more political than practical.

6 hours ago, besleybean said:

We are actually the UK.

Thanks, Bev.  For anyone who's not clear about the distinction, Great Britain is the island where England, Scotland, and Wales are located.  The United Kingdom (currently) consists of all the above plus Northern Island.  More to the point, GB is geographical and the UK is political.

 

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On 10/20/2022 at 11:58 AM, besleybean said:

We are actually the UK.

Apologies to any residents of Northern Ireland, the Isle of Man and other territories not explicitly covered in my usage of Great Britain rather than the United Kingdom.  I suppose a Briton would not have used GB as I did.  I beg indulgence, being just an American but according to dictionary.com, Great Britain is synonymous with the United Kingdom in colloquial usage, and inclusion of Northern Ireland is understood, or at least intended.  Such was my intention, anyway.

**************

The United Kingdom, popularly abbreviated as the UK, is a sovereign nation spread across multiple islands on the coast of northwestern Europe.

It consists of the countries of England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland.

Great Britain is a large island on which most of England, Scotland, and Wales are located. It is geographically located to the east of the smaller island of Ireland, which consists of Northern Ireland and the separate, independent nation known as the Republic of Ireland. The term Great Britain does not include the Isle of Man or the many smaller islands located nearby that are part of the UK.

In technical language, United Kingdom is a political term while Great Britain is a geographical one. However, these two terms overlap heavily in popular usage. Notably, the term Great Britain is popularly used as a synonym of United Kingdom, meaning Northern Ireland is included.

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Oh we have bigger issues to worry about, at the moment...

We're onto our third PM in 10 months.

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3 hours ago, besleybean said:

Oh we have bigger issues to worry about, at the moment...

We're onto our third PM in 10 months.

Yes, to quote KCIII, "Oh, dear oh dear."  I saw a funny meme that pictured 10 Downing Street as an AirBnB "Short term occupancies available".

I don't know how it's even possible to completely tank a currency in only three weeks or what PM Truss did to achieve that singular feat.  I looked forward to getting to know her better.  She apparently had an interest in fashion which is not really something one associated with former PMs Thatcher and May, as such . . her curtsies were pretty weak and now she won't have an opportunity to practice more of them.

We've got our own leadership woes over here, so one empathizes.  Our fearless leader has to be led around, literally, by his wife and his aides because he very often appears to not know where he's going or why he's there.  What interesting times we live in, and by interesting I mean, scary and unstable AF.  A friend I made through a virtual community dedicated to travel is currently Stateside with her husband from her home in Brighton for a Ruby Wedding anniversary trip to New England.  They came over on the Queen Mary 2 in September and have toured New York City, Boston, Vermont and Maine.  Her trip coincided with the crash of the British pound against the dollar and they are feeling the sticker shock.  I don't think the dollar has been stronger against the pound in my lifetime and that's 50+ years.

I had a question relating to GB vs UK:  Your Olympic team still competes under "Great Britain" don't they?  Since the Olympic Games are certainly political though they pretend they aren't, this is an interesting exception to the 'Great Britain is geographical and UK is political' rule of thumb.

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2 hours ago, besleybean said:

The Olympic Team name always causes a big row.

It really is called "Great Britain," then?  Somehow I never noticed.

What's the history / reasoning behind that?  Was the country actually called Great Britain at some point?  What was the team called when Ireland was part of the UK?  Are people from Northern Ireland currently eligible to be on the team?

 

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So many questions!

Let's just deal with what we have now, shall we?

Republic of Ireland clearly has it's own arrangements.

I don't know, but assume, those in Northern Ireland get to choose which team they represent.

I honestly think they just chose the name 'Team GB ' to be snappy.

 

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On 10/25/2022 at 1:34 AM, Carol the Dabbler said:

It really is called "Great Britain," then?  Somehow I never noticed.

What's the history / reasoning behind that?  Was the country actually called Great Britain at some point?  What was the team called when Ireland was part of the UK?  Are people from Northern Ireland currently eligible to be on the team?

 

The modern Olympics date back to 1896, but the United Kingdom dates back to 1801, at least.  That's when the Kingdom of Ireland joined England, Wales and Scotland as part of the 'UK'.  They've always competed under 'Great Britain' in the Olympic Games, though technically speaking "Great Britain" is the land mass that excludes Ireland but contains the other three.  

In 1922, all but the six northernmost counties of Ireland succeeded from the United Kingdom, forming the Republic of Ireland, a sovereign nation.  The northern counties remained under the Crown, which spawned the bitter period of 'the Troubles' which persist to this day.   I was a lot of years old before I realized that I'd had it the wrong way round . . I'd thought that Northern Ireland was the independent bit and 'the Troubles' sprang from the age-old conflicts between Catholic and Protestant.  It's a very complex and fraught situation.  I was privileged to take some virtual tours of Clonakilty, the hometown of Irish freedom fighter Michael Collins.  He was able to negotiate independence for the majority of the Irish counties but had to agree that the Crown would retain the northern six.  For this concession he was killed by his own people.  Besley Bean can speak on this politically sensitive situation with more depth.

Northern Ireland is part of the United Kingdom so their athletes would compete for Great Britain as the team name stands.  Athletes for the Republic of Ireland would compete for their own team. as they are two separate nations.   Under the circumstances, it'd be hard to imagine a scenario where the two teams could swap athletes. 

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I wouldn't be quite so sure of yourself, my Trans Atlantic friend.

The situation on The Emerald Isle is complicated to say the least.

In the past it was entirely driven by religion, not so much these days.

The RC Church in Ireland, has very largely lost credibility.

As far as I am aware, Irish people can still vote in UK elections.

I have just checked and of course I am correct on one point at least:

Northern Irish athletes CHOOSE which nation they wish to represent.

Might be fair, seeing as some don't want the border in the first place!

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34 minutes ago, besleybean said:

I wouldn't be quite so sure of yourself, my Trans Atlantic friend.

The situation on The Emerald Isle is complicated to say the least.

In the past it was entirely driven by religion, not so much these days.

The RC Church in Ireland, has very largely lost credibility.

As far as I am aware, Irish people can still vote in UK elections.

I have just checked and of course I am correct on one point at least:

Northern Irish athletes CHOOSE which nation they wish to represent.

Might be fair, seeing as some don't want the border in the first place!

I can see why some athletes from Northern Ireland might wish to compete for the Republic, if they are republican-minded, and the Republic of Ireland team wouldn't have the depth of field of the GB team, being that much smaller and thus would be glad of the assist . . . but isn't that awfully politically messy?  All athletes have the option to compete for any nation they want to who will offer them a place on the team, and many do this but it's generally required to establish a residency in the country for which they compete and sometimes obtaining citizenship from that country is required.  I don't know all the esoterica attached to such a decision or how fluid it might be to favor individuals from certain nations over others.  When athletes choose to compete for another flag there's usually a lot of hateful fallout that they have to be prepared for.

I was very gung-ho for the Olympic Games when I was younger and never missed them, Summer or Winter (though I prefer the Winter Games).  In my middle age, I have become disenfranchised viz. the Games because de Coupertin's ideals of international fraternitie though sport have been so corrupted by commercialism, cynicism and political self-interest from the competing nations.  Anything will be done to obtain medals and usually is done.  I've come around to the view that encouraging our young people to obsessively pursue Olympic glory at the expense of a normal life is a bad road to send them down and with a few exceptions, leads to more unhappiness than benefits.

Retired Olympic ice skater Vanessa James is perhaps the most internationally fluid competitor ever.  Born in Ontario, Canada, she lived in Bermuda until the age of 10, when the family moved to the United States.  In 2007, she moved to Paris.  She's had four partners and four nationalities during her skating career.  She's got British citizenship through her father, has a permanent residency card for the U.S. and is also now a French citizen.  She's competed for all four countries, though her Olympic career was primarily under the French flag with her French partner, Morgan Cipres.   A lot of athletes are not particularly motivated by nationalism but pursue opportunities to compete at that level for whichever country is willing to offer them the best opportunities.  

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Your latter point is true and of course athletes train all over the world, to gain the use of the best resources.

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  • 2 months later...

There are two countries now that had two extremes trying to get elected to rule a country, both countries have accused the elected person of committing fraud without a single shred of evidence, both had people storming a building that houses the government, what a bunch of sore losers!

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