Statement Analysis of someone else’s Statement Analysis of Meabh Quoirin’s First Public Statement on August 10th [UPDATED]

First of all, when doing Statement Analysis it’s important to be transparent about source material. Oddly, it’s quite hard to find this particular video on YouTube, and there aren’t many of them.

My Statement Analysis is derived from a strongly-worded Statement Analysis by an anonymous person who posted theirs at this link. Mine won’t be thorough; just a glossing through and highlighting a few points of consensus, and debate.

The Analysis starts off with the right strategy, transcribing the entire 107-word statement. Then it commences with analysis of the salutation.

Good morning, everyone.

This is unexpected as at the time, her daughter’s whereabouts are supposed to be unknown. It is unexpected from a mother in panic not sure how her daughter’s condition is and whose hands she is in. How can this morning be good?

This is an early indication of fairly substantial cognitive bias from the writer. Because Meabh doesn’t say “Good morning.” She starts off with “Morning.” Those around her answer, “Good morning”.

I do agree that even a polite greeting, with or without the “good” may feel a little strange under the circumstances. We don’t expect to hear a salutation at the beginning or end of a 911 call. But this is different. Even though it’s an emergency it’s a long emergency. It’s protracted and the setting is different. It’s personal with a lot of people standing beside and around them. So in my opinion, the salutation is the natural thing to do, even though the situation is stressful and urgent.

There are many other aspects to address, including the frequent use of “everyone”, “every one” and “everything” in this brief statement.

Since I don’t typically do this sort of analysis in blogs, I won’t elaborate in further depth on the conventions, semantics etc. To do justice to statement analysis one has to be incredibly thorough, and that requires a chapter on the subject, at least.

But I do want to correct a few other errors in this  poster’s analysis.

We knew you are searching night and day for Nora.

She said “knew” in the past tense. What could be the reason? I needs to be flagged though it could be a simple error. It could also express a process of thinking about how she felt at a previous time. She knew they would search for the child. Which time frame was she referring to? And why is it significant enough to show up in her speech?

Meabh is Irish, so her pronunciation is different. I don’t hear “knew”, I hear “know”, although the locution is somewhat pinched and high-pitched. While mismatches in tense are a typical feature of deception, that’s not the case here.

We see you working so hard and and also praying with us, being with us.

Bringing in deity needs to also be flagged…

Yes and no. In this instance, this was the morning of an important Muslim holiday, and so prayers were to be expected. We also know there were prayers the previous morning too [Friday] attended by the chief of police, where flyers were also handed out.

I do feel feel uncomfortable about the phraseology and the reference in this section, however. “Praying with us”? The Quoirins aren’t Muslim, and if we want to get technical, it was more likely the Quoirins were praying with the police/soldiers, to Allah, than the other way round. One could argue that the semantics loosely refer to “praying together”, but it doesn’t hold because of how Meabh frames the rest of the sentence:

We see you working so hard and and also praying with us, being with us.

Broken down it’s reduced to:

We see you praying with us.

Unconsciously Meabh may be communicating:

You see [referring to those watching] you [them] praying with us. 

It also feels like “being with us” following on from “praying with us” is done as a modifier, to admit they weren’t necessarily being prayed with, but accompanied in prayer [being with us]. If this is an error, it might indicate nervousness from the child’s mother, which under the circumstances wouldn’t necessarily be a sign of anything. On the other hand, Meabh is a professional speaker. So this one is hard to read.

Overall it feels unnecessary to be talking about prayers, or what the Quoirins have been doing. It’s more important what the SAR teams do today that’s going to be different and more effective compared to the fruitless six days preceding Search Day 7. Nora’s life is on the line.

So regarding the prayers etc. I wouldn’t call this a red flag, but it might be a grey one.

and thank you so much, terimah kasi.

Again she is thanking them. This time also in their language. She has now thanked them multiple times and it appears genuine, so the question is what she is thankful for. She told us. For being there with them. Not with Nora. She also might be thankful for not having discovered anything.

I concur, there is too much gratitude when the police haven’t delivered anything, and there’s too much consideration in this sign-off in the local language. There may be a simple reason for this. It’s possible Meabh’s statement wasn’t entirely voluntary, nor off-the-cuff. She may have been asked, or told, to publicly thank the police given how roundly the police were being criticized and undermined [and thus losing face] in the media.

We might think that by thanking the authorities, Meabh is just being polite, but we’d expect a mother in this situation to be more focused on her child, and on urging the troops to spend more time looking for Nora, than on being with them, praying with them, or thanking them.

Personally I would expect a lot more emotion from both parents, especially since we know they disagreed with the authorities throughout Nora’s disappearance on whether there was an abduction or not. If they didn’t believe Nora wandered off, then this was an opportunity to petition for a search through local villages that had not yet been searched, or to compile a list of pedophiles in the area and go after them. There’s none of that here. Meabh’s getting advice from missing child experts – why not impart some of that expertise to a captive audience now that she has the opportunity?

There’s something else.

Nora’s name is only mentioned twice in the entire statement, and very little information of any value – including about her – is provided to the troops. This is Meabh’s chance to inspire the troops and give them the tools and insight about her daughter that might save her life. Instead she elects to thank the SAR teams. Sebastien elects to say nothing.

I agree with the writer that Meabh had to have been painfully aware of Nora’s limitations, and so the odds were Nora was either already dead when this speech was made, or not long after.

I disagree that Meabh knew or believed for a fact that Nora was dead, because I do think it’s possible Meabh was led to believe Nora was abducted. If those circumstances were true, regardless of how probable they were in reality, then Nora – as far as Meabh and Sebastien were concerned – could have been alive after all. The real question is whether Meabh truly believed Nora was abducted.


7 thoughts on “Statement Analysis of someone else’s Statement Analysis of Meabh Quoirin’s First Public Statement on August 10th [UPDATED]

  1. One phrase Meabh used that struck me as odd, and I’m not sure why, but she said “we hope you find Nora.” It seemed really half-hearted, as if she didn’t think they would, but she hoped they would. Maybe the troops were her last hope, as the parents couldn’t find her – and one step further – didn’t think she could be found? Hope to me is kind of like faith. There is nothing to back it up, but people cling to it anyway. And your last paragraph above is stunning.


  2. Just out of interest, has anyone heard dad day anything – at all? I really don’t think I have, though obviously i won’t have watched every single bit of coverage so might just have missed it. It’s just struck me that I know her voice well from all the coverage but have no idea about his.


  3. “We might think that Meabh is just being polite, but we’d expect a mother in this situation to be more focused on her child, and on urging the troops to spend more time looking for Nora, than on being with them, praying with them, or thanking them.” The mother spoke in simple English and kept it short. Even that, i think not many understood what she said. Generally, people here do not understand much English, especially English with a foreign accent. Over here, our command of the English language depends on our “position”, level of education and whether there’s a need (meet foreigners/tourists). If you are a “higher up” person or deal with international clients, then your English would be better. If you work in a mall in the city or in a resort, then you need to speak fairly good English. I believe what she said to the troops was sufficient. If there are other information to be discussed, it would best be discussed with those in a higher position. It’s easier to communicate and be understood that way. The message can then be passed on to the troops by the superiors. The father is strange though. No word from him.


  4. Seems bit like when a wife is mad at a husband for making a mistake…you better shut the hell up and let me talk, you did enough already!

    But…still troubles did she get to the spot she was found, as if found dead elsewhere by someone who knew the place well and he decided to place her body there so searchers can find it. If he had said he discovered the body, he might be implicated, he or she feared.

    Who was the creepy resort manager. Another person of the owner’s husband? Her reply to the tourist who mentioned his discomfort at the guy in pool watching them, on tripadvisor comment, was defensive… ‘he was staring into space, not at you’…seems kinda patronising…we know when people are staring versus into space? Just a thought.


  5. Pingback: Crime News – August 2019 - CrimeStopNews.Com

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