The Best Cyprus Community

Skip to content


A novel catalyst for the Cyprus solution

Propose and discuss specific solutions to aspects of the Cyprus Problem

1. Do you think this school could exist in the current situation? 2. Do you think it could expedite a political settlement to the Cyprus problem even if that means the settlement would occur 10-15 years after the school's opening?

Poll ended at Wed Sep 05, 2007 4:43 am

1. Yes 2. Yes
10
29%
1. Yes 2. No
11
31%
1. No 2. No
11
31%
1. No 2. Yes
3
9%
 
Total votes : 35

Postby Mills Chapman » Fri Aug 03, 2007 12:48 am

kurupetos wrote:
What this school would be trying to do implicitly is encourage each student to identify more with their Cypriot identity than either their Greek or Turkish identity. Instead of motiviating students to first think they are Greek or Turkish and secondly Cypriot, the school would use certain strategies - that also lead to better cognitive learning - to motivate students to pride themselves first and foremost on their Cypriotness and then their ethnic identities.


What Cypriot identity? You cannot built on something that doesn't exist. If it exists give me some examples. The tragic events in 1974 and before and the forced division for 33 years had vanished every hope for a common national identity. The first think we need it's a solution that will unite Cyprus and then anything else.


kurupetos, I didn't say that the Cypriot identity already existed in a major way or even at all. What I am saying is that the school will create and build pride in a Cypriot identity for people born after today, the ones who might be the ones in the future who finally find the solution (mind you, the search might not be found for decades). A solution that is agreeable to all will most likely be one that is thought up by people who first identify themselves as Cypriot and secondly as Greek or Turkish. If this people aren't alive today, then an educational process acceptable to all - including you - needs to be instutionalized (written systematically into the schooling system) so that anyone born after today (ie, with a clean socialization slate) will identify with being Cypriot before identifying with being either Greek or Turkish. Yes, you and they may be a GC or a TC, but the goal is to make each one freely think in their minds that they are first and foremost a Cypriot.

Here are the results of a google search on the Cypriot identity: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=%2 ... dentity%22

Good questions, kurupetos.
User avatar
Mills Chapman
Contributor
Contributor
 
Posts: 524
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2004 3:00 am
Location: USA (although, ideally it would be Aitutaki)

Postby CopperLine » Fri Aug 03, 2007 12:52 am

Mills,
Don't worry my suggestion of The Quiet American was not prompted by suspicions you were CIA ! (Frankly I couldn't care less if you were) It was prompted by the fact that Greene's book has Byron's words as the epigram.
I rather think you missed the point of Byron - he's saying that even with good intentions bodies and souls are killed.

Dunno the James Taylor, I'll check it out.
User avatar
CopperLine
Regular Contributor
Regular Contributor
 
Posts: 1558
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 9:04 pm

Postby Mills Chapman » Fri Aug 03, 2007 1:13 am

CopperLine,

Sorry if I was touchy on that. I was half-joking. It's just that the CIA and the U.S are perceived as having had a negative effect on the Cyprus problem (the U.S. ambassador was shot dead in '74 in Nicosia), and being an American, I always have to be emphatic about the organizations that I am not connected to.

Regarding Byron, I never fared well in poetry analysis in high school (aargh, I hated it in fact!), so I guess I totally misread that quote.

Here are two links to Taylor's tune. Maybe he wrote it based on the CopperLine that you know about:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gZiYnvyU_cU http://www.lyricsfreak.com/j/james+tayl ... 69238.html
User avatar
Mills Chapman
Contributor
Contributor
 
Posts: 524
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2004 3:00 am
Location: USA (although, ideally it would be Aitutaki)

Postby kurupetos » Sat Aug 04, 2007 3:31 am

What I am saying is that the school will create and build pride in a Cypriot identity for people born after today, the ones who might be the ones in the future who finally find the solution (mind you, the search might not be found for decades). A solution that is agreeable to all will most likely be one that is thought up by people who first identify themselves as Cypriot and secondly as Greek or Turkish. If this people aren't alive today, then an educational process acceptable to all - including you - needs to be instutionalized (written systematically into the schooling system) so that anyone born after today (ie, with a clean socialization slate) will identify with being Cypriot before identifying with being either Greek or Turkish. Yes, you and they may be a GC or a TC, but the goal is to make each one freely think in their minds that they are first and foremost a Cypriot.


Mills,

I think you are missing one important detail. What keeps the Cyprus problem alive is the fact that the "TRNC" has not been recognized yet by the international community other than Turkey. It is speculated than in a 10 year period a form of recognition will be given (It already started after the 2004 referendum). In this case what will be the motivation for the TC side to get involve into a reunification process having in mind that for the last 50+ years the target of the TCs was "taxim" (partition)?

In my opinion Cyprus needs a solution now. It is already too late. Many people outside Cyprus think that the main reason a solution is not achievable so far are the differences between GC and TC. This is not true because many towns and villages in the past were mixed and no problems existed. What created the problem was the well known british motto "divide and rule". The British favored this for obvious reasons. Although they could very easily give Cyprus to Greece (they promised that before the Second World War!) they chose to get Turkey involved so that a problematic state would have the UK as a guarantor and keep large military bases in the island (No wonder every solution proposal makes clear that the UK military bases should stay in the island for ever). This also favoures indirectly the US which is the best ally of the UK (see Gulf wars, etc.). Have in mind that every solution plan comes from the UN. What runs the UN? The superpowers ofcourse (primarily the US). Moreover to the above, the US needs the favor of Turkey for economic and more importantly military purposes (which are indirectly again economic reasons (see oil control)). Why would the US become an enemy of Turkey for the sake of little Cyprus?

What really needs to be done is the removal of every third party from the island (i.e., UK, USA, Greece, Turkey) and also the removal of every dividing clause in the proposed Cyprus Constitution. Obviously the GC site wants that (I can give a lot of example if you want). Don't forget though that their opinion doesn't count (unfortunately "jungle law" is still alive! as I explained above). The Annan plan was correctly rejected by the GC site because it sustained enternally the Greek and Turkish guarantor rights (with significant military numbers) and the UK military bases. It also included the most fundamental problem: the dividing of the Cypriot people to GC and TC with more dividing than uniting terms.

I congratulate and thank you for taking the effort to think of a solution plan for my country but I urge you to investigate the problem much more deeply and find out yourself what created and what conserves this problem to this day. Good luck! :wink: [/quote]
User avatar
kurupetos
Leading Contributor
Leading Contributor
 
Posts: 17912
Joined: Tue Jul 31, 2007 7:46 pm
Location: Cyprus

Postby humanist » Sat Aug 04, 2007 4:15 am

Mills a combined school is a great idea. I think if something like this was set up you will find people from either linguistic background sending their children there. Provided you went in with right intention to bring people together as opposed to making money out of it.
User avatar
humanist
Main Contributor
Main Contributor
 
Posts: 6585
Joined: Fri Nov 10, 2006 11:46 am

Postby Peegor » Fri Aug 10, 2007 12:25 pm

I have not read the past 16 pages so I'm just going to put down some very general points.
- Turkish Cypriots & Greek Cypriots ***DO*** go to school with each other as they once did (prior to 1974) at The English School in Nicosia. And things are just fine there.
- What some people have said and I will say more clearly: the people do not need to be brought together; the bloody government(s) need to get their acts together. The people are just fine with each other for the most part. Effectively there is no border now as people pass between quite freely... though Turkish Cypriots feel more free in the south and even come to Nicosia to do their grocery shopping!
- You have obviously not put a lot of thought and care into this idea as you seem totally unaware of the facts of day to day life here. And I see a previous post of yours which attests to that quite nicely by you recommending a fellow American not to mention 'Northern Cyprus' but 'illegitimate North' instead because it would '''score them points''' with locals. How condescending? Well that's not my main point... but still... pretty damn condescending. In day to day life if you mention the north you do not lose anything. It's a fact of life for the vast majority after 33-34 years of it.

Ideally people in power need to get their acts together and allow for the future. By which political means this will take no one knows but we'll just have to wait and see. But when someone comes along with clearly no knowledge whatsoever of the ground level situation and proposes some kind of utopia then it's obviously just thin air. You *NEED* that vital knowledge of daily life here so that any plan you may propose can be backed up by it and not be shot down for one reason or another along the way.

The best shot we had was the Annan Plan and that was wasted vastly due to the 'OXI' campaign which spawned from a premature referendum. The 'OXI' campaign I speak of is all the fanatics graffiti-ing the streets and pavements and acting like a bunch of immature boneheads but *mainly* Tasos Papadopoulos' stunt on national TV where he CRIED OPENLY AND VISIBLY thus encouraging people to make even more swift and rash decisions on the matter without even bothering to touch the plan's manuscript one bit. The church was also appalling in the matter. Talk about cult of personality and brainwashing... woohoo PRC!
Peegor
New Member
New Member
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Thu Aug 09, 2007 3:38 pm

Postby Piratis » Fri Aug 10, 2007 11:36 pm

I read a lot of the Annan plan, until the point I got disgusted by it. Did you read it Peegor?

The plan was indeed either for laughing or for crying. The Cypriot people have rejected that 100% pro-Turkish plan long before Papadopoulos went on TV. Go get some newspapers of the time and read the polls about Annan plan from months before the referendum, and stop talking crap and trying to undermine the democratic decision of the Cypriot people.
User avatar
Piratis
Moderator
Moderator
 
Posts: 12261
Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2004 11:08 pm

Postby Mills Chapman » Sun Aug 12, 2007 10:20 pm

humanist wrote:Mills a combined school is a great idea. I think if something like this was set up you will find people from either linguistic background sending their children there. Provided you went in with right intention to bring people together as opposed to making money out of it.

Humanist,
It’s reassuring to get messages like this, and I assure you that I have no financial incentive (no motive to make a lot of money). What drives me is the awareness that I may be the only one alive with a specific idea that could help a lot of people (schooling together the children of two opposing political groups), and that if I die before the idea comes to fruition, the idea might die too. Each of us have something unique to offer to humanity, and I feel like this is the one for me and that to turn away from it would be turning away from what life wants of me. You just need to take a good look at my income tax returns to know that I am not good at making money. :)

kurupetos wrote:I think you are missing one important detail. What keeps the Cyprus problem alive is the fact that the "TRNC" has not been recognized yet by the international community other than Turkey. It is speculated than in a 10 year period a form of recognition will be given (It already started after the 2004 referendum). In this case what will be the motivation for the TC side to get involve into a reunification process having in mind that for the last 50+ years the target of the TCs was "taxim" (partition)?

Kurupetos,
This school can operate regardless of whether the status quo continues, whether the “TRNC” is recognized by everyone, or whether Cyprus is reunified with one government. You are looking at this from the perspective of a politician. Look at it from the perspective of a prospective parent who simply wants the best education for their child at the most affordable price. If the “TRNC” is recognized, Nicosia will still be one metro area even if officially it becomes two cities. Families living in North Nicosia will still only be – “as the bird flies” - 1000-2000 km from schools in South Nicosia. If the best educational opportunity lies in South Nicosia and if it has a balanced curriculum, there is nothing that would stop certain “TRNC” officials from sending their children to that school.

kurupetos wrote: In my opinion Cyprus needs a solution now. ... Many people outside Cyprus think that the main reason a solution is not achievable so far are the differences between GC and TC. This is not true because many towns and villages in the past were mixed and no problems existed....

... Have in mind that every solution plan comes from the UN. ?

...What really needs to be done is the removal of every third party from the island (i.e., UK, USA, Greece, Turkey)

Of course Cyprus needs a solution now, but I seriously doubt it is going to happen. I do understand that most Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots get along perfectly fine and everything you wrote about the UN. Mind you, however, that the EU will probably not be the ones that step forward to address the problem if the UN steps back. As much I would hope that the Cypriots and the Turkey can figure this out on their own, I doubt it will happen. It’s too much of a zero-sum game for them, especially in areas of security. Turkey has no incentive to pull their troops unless the TCs demand that they leave, but I think enough TCs worry about what their safety would look like without Turkish troops and therefore they don’t raise enough of a ruckus to get Turkey to go.

kurupetos wrote:... I urge you to investigate the problem much more deeply and find out yourself what created and what conserves this problem to this day.

Kurupetos, I have researched this problem pretty deeply as it is (at least deeper than most Americans), and though my opinion of how it was created is not important, I do know a fair amount. I know about the UK wanting bases and the US wanting a weak (or even divided) Cyprus in the 1970s that wouldn’t fall into the hands of the Soviets and also the US wanting to appease both Turkey and Greece at that point to keep NATO's southern flank strong. I don’t want to get into a lot of how the problem was started, but simply into how it could be resolved.
User avatar
Mills Chapman
Contributor
Contributor
 
Posts: 524
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2004 3:00 am
Location: USA (although, ideally it would be Aitutaki)

Postby Mills Chapman » Sun Aug 12, 2007 10:47 pm

Peegor wrote:I have not read the past 16 pages so I'm just going to put down some very general points.
- Turkish Cypriots & Greek Cypriots ***DO*** go to school with each other as they once did (prior to 1974) at The English School in Nicosia. And things are just fine there.

Peegor,
I addressed this on pages 5, 8, and 10 in this thread. I know a lot about The English School and about Clerides and Denktash going there. In my proposal, which I realize some are having problems downloading, I spend four pages on The English School and why the existing situation there wouldn’t be a suitable option for those Turkish Cypriot parents who are also the most conservative (right-wing) officials in the de facto TC administration. Because of the technical difficulties, I’ll also paste at the end of this post a summary from my proposal of my concerns with using The English School in its existing situation.

Peegor wrote: - What some people have said and I will say more clearly: the people do not need to be brought together; the bloody government(s) need to get their acts together.


Good luck in getting the current governments to solve the situation. I do know that people pass quite freely and that many TCs work in the south.

Peegor wrote:And I see a previous post of yours which attests to that quite nicely by you recommending a fellow American not to mention 'Northern Cyprus' but 'illegitimate North' instead because it would '''score them points''' with locals.


As far as that post goes to that African-American girl, you’re right; it was wrong for me to say “score points.” I do apologize for that. I should have said “build rapport.” But I don’t regret anything else as I was purposely trying to blow reality out of proportion and into the direction of safety. She is of a different race and nationality than practically all Cypriots, and her first language is not Greek or Turkish. She will stand out. I wanted to be dramatically strong so that the message would at least remain in her mind.

I never specifically said TRNC or Northern Cyprus or Turkish Cyprus when I visited Cyprus in 2003, but when I spoke to two Cypriots of Greek descent about possible conflict resolution activities, they angrily lectured me on the Cyprus problem for 10 minutes even though I was trying to be as sensitive and respectful as possible. They spoke to me as if I knew nothing but I had already read about it quite deeply.

Argument for not using The English School and The Junior School, until some changes made to them

I don’t think there is enough security to convince the most reluctant Turkish Cypriot parents, ones who may very well be high up in the TC administration. If I am a conservative Turkish Cypriot parent, I may not want to send my child to a school that lies completely on a piece of soil where my "government’s laws" do not apply and where the laws of my historical enemy do. The soldiers protecting my community, in this case the Turkish military, cannot protect my child if need be on the way to and from school. Though Rauf Denktash himself attended The English School, would he, if having a very young child in 2007, send his child across the line after everything he has done to promote an independent Turkish Cypriot state?

Though it is a deeply disturbing prospect, all it takes is one act of violence against commuting Turkish Cypriot students to scare their parents away. A school literally straddling the Green Line would give each side’s security forces an equal opportunity to protect their children. International donors, especially Turkey, might not want to fund The Junior School and The English School with the security arguments that Turkish Cypriot parents could present.

I believe that the English School delivers its 1st year program in Greek except for the English class and that Classical Greek is a compulsory subject for all 2nd-year and 3rd-year pupils. In The Cypriot School, Turkish Cypriot students would not have to learn Greek. Turkish Cypriot students should be given an opportunity to learn Turkish at the school that is equal to their classmates’ opportunity to learn Greek.

Though The English School has an outstanding curriculum ( http://www.englishschool.ac.cy/curriculum.shtml ), its history curriculum for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd years might be centered on the Hellenistic worldview, which would not give fair treatment to the historical views of Turkish Cypriots. The key is a Cypriot-centric worldview. On March 19-20, 2005, The English School hosted a workshop where the teaching of Cyprus history was discussed. From the school’s website,

“Seminar on ‘Cyprus moving into Multicultural Europe’
“On the 19th and 20th March a Workshop was organised by the Pancyprian Coordinating Committee of Students with the participation of more than 100 students (Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots) from different schools of Cyprus. 40 of these students came from the English School. The Workshop was subsidised by the Ministry of Education and the Youth Board of Cyprus.

There were three sessions – the past, the present and the future – where students had the chance to attend lectures and take part in discussion on issues such as:
i. Sources of conflict between the two communities
ii. Studying Cyprus history
iii. How each community is presented in the books of the other community
iv. European values
v. Practical steps to promote understanding between the communities
The Workshop proved an excellent occasion for a large number of students to come together for a weekend, interact, discuss and see that they share the same concerns and feelings.”


But what were the conclusions? Is there a better way to objectively and accurately teach controversial Cypriot issues than by using Academic Controversy?

Turkish Cypriot students should be given an opportunity to learn about Islam that is equal to their classmates’ opportunity to learn about Christianity.

No mention was made on either The English School’s or The Junior School’s website about cooperative learning.

There needs to be equal enrollment from each side (50%/50%). Greek Cypriots are the majority group on Cyprus, and a major problem in resolving the Cyprus issue is how to share political power in any new government that is formed. That is not the intention of striving to have a student body that is made equally from each side. Young Greek and Turkish Cypriot students need to be in a school setting where they are not conscious of being in the minority group. Self-esteem issues can easily arise if a young child is in the minority for too long. The two options are to have an ethnically homogeneous school, such as most of the ones in Cyprus, or a school that is evenly balanced. It is the same argument as the one for having a co-educational school where the number of female students approximates the number of male students. Nobody wants to be in the minority that glaringly sticks out.

The goal of The Cypriot School model is not to produce future politicians for Cyprus but to maximize the probability that the politicians of future generations will first identify with all Cypriots before identifying with mainland Greece or mainland Turkey. The common identity of the majority of the students can not be ethnicity. We want to maximize the probability that future Greek Cypriot politicians will have an unprejudiced view towards Turkish Cypriots, but we also want to maximize this probability for future Turkish Cypriot politicians. Since we don’t want to be biased towards giving one ethnicity a better opportunity to do this than the other ethnicity, we need to accept an equal number of students from each community. There is no connection between doing this for school children and then calling for 50/50 representation in the government; we just want to give equal effort to each side in creating positive inter-ethnic attitudes

Though it is unlikely, violence from ultra-nationalists on one side towards the school could be lessened if that side’s students have equal representation in the student body. If certain politicians have children attending the school, they would certainly make an effort to rein in the thinking of their side’s extreme radicals to strike against this location in particular. In the Beslan school siege in Russia, there were no Chechen children attending the school. Would the Chechens do such thing against the Beslan school if 50% of its students were Chechens?

There was a well-documented bullying problem at The English School before the vote on the Annan Plan in April 2004. It was an incident aimed at Greek Cypriots who favored reconciliation with Turkish Cypriots.

From The Cyprus Mail on April 23, 2004
“In Nicosia, an 18-year-old schoolboy received death threats. Speaking to the Cyprus Mail yesterday, the 18-year-old boy, who is an English School student, said he was harassed for his pro-solution views. On Wednesday morning, he went to school to be greeted by graffiti identifying him by name, and adding “the ‘no’ shall be written in your blood.” Later in the day, the paper received a phone call saying the teenager would be “the first victim after the referendum. The 18-year-old said he was initially unafraid, but has since become overwhelmed by how the situation has unfolded and suspects the threats were made by fellow pupils.”

Would Turkish Cypriot parents in North Nicosia feel comfortable with sending their children fully across the line to a school such as this?

The English School’s has tried to address the problem. This is from their website:
“Anti-Racism Campaign 4th – 15th April (2005)
“…a particular focus of our PSHME (Personal, Social, Health and Moral Education) programme is encouraging tolerance in diversity; that is, tolerance of difference whether it concerns race, religion, gender or a person’s physical or intellectual abilities. In order to strengthen our students’ awareness we have organised a two-week anti-racism campaign. We have been successful in giving out important and motivating messages: Respect difference in people here at our school as well as in the societies outside the boundaries of the school and our country; get to know cultures other than your own and promote peace, friendships, love and respect.”


Is there any existing research supporting their program? What socio-emotional and cognitive benefits have been shown to come out of this? What about the age of the students? This needs to be done with students at a much younger age, such as when they are in The Junior School. What about the duration of the program? This needs to be done for the length of the year, not two weeks. Is there a peer mediation component so that students can experientially learn to resolve their own conflicts in a safe space? A comprehensive school-wide program is needed that won’t comprise the academics of the curriculum. One with a spiral format would be preferable and with supporting research behind it.
Here are two possibilities:
- http://csee.net/researchdb/detail.php?ID=587
- http://www.co-operation.org/pages/peace-meta.html
User avatar
Mills Chapman
Contributor
Contributor
 
Posts: 524
Joined: Fri Dec 10, 2004 3:00 am
Location: USA (although, ideally it would be Aitutaki)

Postby humanist » Mon Aug 13, 2007 1:22 am

Mills
Humanist,
It’s reassuring to get messages like this, and I assure you that I have no financial incentive (no motive to make a lot of money). What drives me is the awareness that I may be the only one alive with a specific idea that could help a lot of people (schooling together the children of two opposing political groups), and that if I die before the idea comes to fruition, the idea might die too. Each of us have something unique to offer to humanity, and I feel like this is the one for me and that to turn away from it would be turning away from what life wants of me. You just need to take a good look at my income tax returns to know that I am not good at making money.


Your welcome. I apreciate that with any venture one's aim is to make money and whilst I said the reason is not o make money I didn't mean it in aways that you gcreate a loss. A profit wld also be good for you. However, if that profit margin is less where the school is more affordable for the masses then Ibelieve you will achieve more more.

PLease take no notes of people who say .... that people are doing fine, the reality is that people are not doing fine there may be some who cross over and do whatey need to do. That is called surviving. If peopdid wel we wouldn't be in this ituation today. People are not doing well because if people did welll they would have vted politicians who shared their views.

I think your on a good thing. If you have the cash flow set it up, you will see your dream come to fruition. Make it central so that people living in the occupied area of Cyprus can access it, with ease.

If the RoC give me an excemption from the army I will be happy to volunteer a couple of days a week for the purpose of the school. But I aint going to the army :)

Good luck
User avatar
humanist
Main Contributor
Main Contributor
 
Posts: 6585
Joined: Fri Nov 10, 2006 11:46 am

PreviousNext

Return to Cyprus Problem Solution Proposals

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests