Wednesday, June 3, 2020

the last book I ever read (Patrick Radden Keefe's Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland, excerpt sixteen)

from Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland by Patrick Radden Keefe:

“You cannot mourn someone who has not died,” the Argentine-Chilean writer Ariel Dorfman once observed. In Chile, more than three thousand people were disappeared during the military dictatorship of Augusto Pinochet. In Argentina, the number may have been as high as thirty thousand. In tiny Northern Ireland, the figure was much smaller. The commission ultimately identified sixteen individuals who had been disappeared through the whole course of the Troubles. Even that was a reflection of the extraordinary smallness of the province: in some other countries, there were debates about the aggregate numbers of people who were buried in unmarked graves. In Northern Ireland, you could list the victims on the back of an envelope: Joe Lynskey, Seamus Wright, Kevin McKee, Jean McConville, Peter Wilson, Eamon Molloy, Columba McVeigh, Robert Nairac, Brendan Megraw, John McClory, Brian McKinney, Eugene Simons, Gerard Evans, Danny McIlhone, Charlie Armstrong, Seamus Ruddy. But to name the dead was one thing. To find them was another.

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