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Paddy Ashdown QUOTES / QUOTATIONS
Bosnia is under my skin. It's the place you cannot leave behind. I was obsessed by the nightmare of it all; there was this sense of guilt, and an anger that has become something much deeper over these last years.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
I am also responsible to the Bosnian people. If I pass a decree that is refused, my authority is gone like the morning dew.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
I am formally accountable to the steering board of the PIC, and I meet with nine ambassadors from the PIC every week. I have to have the capitals' broad agreement with what I do.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
I am here because I think it was a terrible sin of the west to allow those years of war.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
I can create institutions, but I can't rewrite the chips in people's heads.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
I can establish the expectation of retributive justice. Have we done that? No.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
I don't think Bosnia is ready for reconciliation, but I do think it is ready for truth.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
I love this country, I love these people, though I can't say I love their politicians. People are always nicer than politicians, but here, you can mark that difference up a hundredfold.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
I shall go home now. You have to know when your time is up. I knew that with the Liberal Democrats, and I know that now, in Bosnia.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
I was told there would be riots in the streets, but there were no riots.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
I've had much nastier things said about me in the British press than in the Bosnian press.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
If I have regrets, they are that we could not do more like the Srebrenica commission.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
If The Hague says they have evidence against someone, I will remove them. But I cannot be governed by innuendo.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
It was a superb agreement to end a war, but a very bad agreement to make a state. From now on, we have to part company with Dayton and try to build a modern democratic state, for which I have tried to lay the foundations.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
It works both ways: there are victims of tragedy who come to me who have experienced grief of such magnitude that they cannot reconcile. Likewise, I cannot change the mentality of those who committed the crimes or the fools who followed them.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
It would be a foolish high representative who worked that way.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
It's not my job to be popular. I'm goal-driven; my job is to get results.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
Maybe it's legitimate criticism, though it can be hurtful. Maybe I haven't paid sufficient attention to the people with whom I would have a natural affinity as a liberal, and they feel let down by that.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
My first job has been to do the best thing for the Bosnian people. Not for the Serbs, the Bosniaks or Croats, but the people as a whole.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
My second job has been to try to use my power to create institutions of a modern state that could enter the European Union, and there was very little time. The door was closing, and I wanted to get Bosnia through before it shut.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
One has to respect legal procedure.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
People do not want politicians they know to be corrupt.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
Politics is about putting yourself in a state of grace.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
Politics is compromise.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
The generous way of putting it is that we were not ready for this. The less generous way is to say: How was it possible to return to the politics of appeasement of the 1930s?
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
The greatest failure is that although we have created institutions, we have not created a civil society.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
The major burden of guilt is on the Serbs, and they have to acknowledge it, just as the Germans acknowledged it.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
This country is about history, and unless the Serbs in particular come to some understanding of this history, we cannot build a stable state.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
We are not there yet, but I'd be disappointed if in two years' time there was not some movement towards truth as a precursor to reconciliation.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
We have invented a new human right here - the right to return home after a war.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
We have to make their livelihoods viable, get them the proper prices for their produce, try and make them stay rather than sell their property and leave again.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
We who came here saw what was happening. This was far more than a war in a faraway place. This was a moral imperative, a terrible vision of the future.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown
What my future will not be is active politics in the Liberal Democrat party.
Quotation of Paddy Ashdown