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Useful Notes / Misplaced Nationalism

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"Any time I've been to an historical building in Ireland, after five minutes you'll see a plaque on the wall, and it says 'and then the English came and ruined it'."

It's another day on the Internet. Someone mentions a nation in passing, another person mentions something about that nation and how bad it is. Everyone takes sides, a heated argument ensues, and the original topic may never be mentioned again.

What is this force that divides Message Boards, derails discussions, and causes otherwise reasonable people to turn into frothing super-patriots? That's right, it's Misplaced Nationalism, the division of the Internet along nationalnote  lines even though it supposedly transcends borders and cultures. This generally comes hand in hand with the assumption that even though you may not agree with everything your country does, people from other countries are totally complicit in everything their country does. Don't like their leader? Insult them for it or, better yet, blame them for supporting that person (even when they didn't). Have a grudge on their country for something that happened decades or even centuries ago? Bring it up now, and blame the current generation for it! Hold a nasty prejudice against another country? Rag on them for it! If they insist you're misinformed, tell them they're lying, because you clearly know more about their country than they do.

The typical result is that everyone else in the discussion (who up to that point had been nationless Internet entities) suddenly become flag waving patriots for whatever country they happen to be from (even if they don't actually take sides) or agree with. The argument will ALWAYS rage on permanently, and continuously, FOREVER AND EVER AND EVER, as not even moderators can stop this. Not even the Silent Majority can stop this, as they are indistinguishable from the Vocal Minority.

Although it can be hard to distinguish them from the actual Single Issue Wonks, these types of arguments are often started by Trolls looking to rile everyone up. Like with most trolling, the best way to deal with it is to ignore it and hope it goes away.

When Misplaced Nationalism breaks out, it's not uncommon to see bouts of Cultural Cringe also appear from Boomerang Bigots, who are all too happy to agree with the vitriol aimed at their countrymen. Others may beg for belligerents to Stop Being Stereotypical, especially if they're acting out negative stereotypes. Expect to see plenty of No True Scotsman fallacies in these situations as well.

See also: Patriotic Fervor, Flame War, Single-Issue Wonk, Cultural Posturing, Values Dissonance and Your Normal Is Our Taboo. Contrast Cargo Cult and Cultural Cringe. Always a form of a Forever War, with no such thing as a Silent Majority.


Note: Examples are categorized according to what the "Misplaced Nationalism" is directed at.

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     Towards North American Countries 

The United States

  • Discussion involving the United States of America in general. Just mentioning the USA in some areas has the possibility of igniting a Flame War. "America Is Evil" is a common reaction to a number of things on the Internet, and that's just from Americans. These attitudes turn up in Real Life, as well. An example of this is that on any article/video about some bad American thing, expect a bunch of comments from people who don't live in the USA saying "I'm glad I live in X Country where Y doesn't happen!"
  • Displays of American culture or patriotism. For instance, the American sports chant "U-S-A! U-S-A!" is sometimes viewed as an example of inconsiderate Flavor #2 Eaglelandism at its worst, by both non-Americans and Americans who suffer from the Cultural Cringe. The people who denounce displays of American culture or patriotism will applaud and support similar displays from other countries.
  • Even the etymology and use of the word "Yankee" can stir up Misplaced Nationalism. The origins of the word are disputed, although most everyone agrees it comes from Dutch, probably from the time of New Netherland. But the fights are hottest over the meaning. To an American it's someone from a specific part of the United States, although in the South it's in reference to somebody who is from a state that sided with the Union during the Civil War. To other Anglophones, it's anyone from the United States (to say nothing of non-Anglophones; see, e.g., the hubbub over the Spanish yanqui). Thus arguments between Americans from the South denying that they're Yankees and people from other countries angry that they're denying that they're American occasionally spring up. As E. B. White, author of Charlotte's Web, columnist for The New Yorker, and a native New Yorker who loved New England, put it:
    "To foreigners, a Yankee is an American. To Americans, a Yankee is a Northerner. To Northerners, a Yankee is an Easterner. To Easterners, a Yankee is a New Englander. To New Englanders, a Yankee is a Vermonter. And in Vermont, a Yankee is somebody who eats pie for breakfast."
  • Similar to the usage of "Yankee" above, there can often be issues over the term "American" itself and who exactly can use the term. Citizens of the United States will often maintain that only citizens of the United States can be termed "Americans" because their country is called the United States of America; which in turn draws the ire of some from Southern and Latin America who view people from the US as haughty by using the phrase. Since, according to them, being simply located in the continent of North or South America qualifies them to identify as American. Americans tend to be rather disgruntled by this, as they see it as Hispanics/Latinos/etc as trying to 'usurp' or 'repudiate' their cultural identity, and will often point out the absurdity and unwieldiness of other monikers: e.g., "What are we supposed to call ourselves? United Statians?" This isn't helped by the fact that in Spanish, "United Statian" actually sounds pretty good (as estadounidense—try saying it, it's fun) and is in common usage; many Latin Americans simply don't get that "United Statian" (like any of the other proffered alternatives) sounds like nails on a chalkboard to an English-speaker, and could just as easily apply to citizens of Mexico, as the country's official name is Estados Unidos Mexicanos ("Mexican United States"). However, another term, "Usonian", used by Frank Lloyd Wright as the name of his style of (then revolutionary) single-story house (which weirdly was a flop at the time), is used sometimes to refer to people from the United States; in fact, the demonym for someone from the United States in Esperanto is "Usonano".
    • It should be noted, that although many Americans can and will identify themselves based on their state of origin e.g., Californian/Texan/etc (even outside of the US, though it tends to be more often used in the US) almost everyone from the US will view their state and national identity as complementary and interchangeable.
  • Similar to above, the very mention of culture in something that will draw the rage of many in Latin America due to calling the US a cultureless country in contrast with the Latin ones. This is somewhat justified in the fact that the majority of people of Latin America are descended from both the Native Amerindians and the Spaniards that came afterwards note , hence they can claim a continuity of the cultures that existed before in sharp contrast to the US, whose policies towards the Natives are already infamous. While there are indeed white Americans who can claim "one sixteenth Cherokee" blood or something of the likes, the majority or a sizeable amountnote  of (even non indigenous descendant) nationals being fluent in an indigenous language (as is the case for Paraguay and Guaraní, Mexico and Nahuatl or Peru and Quechua) or the national flag being based of an indigenous origin myth (Mexico with the eagle fighting a snake on a cactus) would be unthinkable in the US.
  • Any mention of the CIA/Intelligence of the USA is going to be met with the hatred of every person of a country that the US meddled with to implant either puppet presidents or military dictatorships to protect their interests.
  • A particularly stupid version of this occurs over the differences in English-language spelling between the U.S. and elsewhere in the world. Typically, people from the Commonwealth claim their spelling is purer or more proper (despite the fact that both systems have evolved pretty much equally since they first split), while Americans claim their spelling is better or more efficient (despite the fact that both systems have equally vast numbers of idiosyncrasies, like most languages). And indeed, the notion that there are "two systems" is also inaccurate. Each Commonwealth nation has its own English dialect(s), which in addition to having spoken differences also do not always conform to the spelling conventions of British English. Canadian English, for example, is a unique blend of British and American English in terms of both vocabulary and spelling, which should come as no surprise to anyone who's looked at a map and seen where Canada is located. An example of how this works with several commonly-used English words can be seen here.
  • Arguments between Black and White Americans on Affirmative Action, Racism in the modern and past USA, colonialism, black nationalism, etc. Given both sides feel victimized things can get nasty, particularly when some third group (Jews, Native Americans) lumps the two together as the same oppressors.
  • Some non-Americans (as well as American fans of such) for some reason tend to get pretty infuriated when an American company licenses a foreign franchise to America, with anime being a common example. This is typically out of concern that the steamroller that is Hollywood will completely Americanize the franchise beyond recognition, making it generic and destroying any cultural connections and/or characters. Although just as often, they're simply worried that Hollywood will just make it utterly suck (see Dragonball Evolution).
  • Any discussion on an international forum regarding either the Association or American types of "football", even among people who don't follow sports. Arguments over the names of the sports, arguments over kit, all argument fodder.
  • Any discussion involving Cuba is likely to devolve into pro- or anti-American flaming, communism vs. capitalism flamewars, Che Guevara bashing/idealising, bickering about free health care, etc.
  • Almost any discussion of American Immigration, particularly around topics such as language and employment is doomed to be trolled.
  • Non-US residents assuming that the US is the same all over, or that it can be divided into North and South. The Midwest is not to be grouped with the Northeast, ever. And for the love of all that is holy, the South is not Texas!
  • The American Civil War / War Between the States / War of Northern Aggression / War of Southern Treason breeds an example of this for a nation that no longer even exists. Which of the aforementioned names you choose for the war is enough to speak volumes about your opinion on it, and what part of the country you grew up in. Was the war about ending slavery, or about preserving states' rights? Was Abraham Lincoln a slave-liberating hero respected and admired worldwide, or a tyrant who trampled on the God-given right of a third of his country's citizens to own and use other people as they saw fit? Was General Sherman a war hero who did what he had to do to pacify Georgia/punish the south for its sins, or should he have been tried for war crimes? Did the Southern states have a legitimate right to secede, or did they betray the US? Was the "Reconstruction" era the final insult by the victorious Union, or a valiant (albeit short-lived) attempt to ensure that the freed slaves didn't get their rights stripped from them by vengeful white ex-Confederates? "The Late Unpleasantness" has appeared as an aversion of the above, either jokingly or as characterization.
    • And speaking of the Civil War, the "Bleeding Kansas" affair that preceded it (and provided tragic Foreshadowing of what was to come) has led to an ongoing rivalry between Kansas and Missouri, a state which was heavily involved in the fiasco.
  • Some lively, if reasonably friendly, regional flame wars can get going among Americans about how to cook barbeque. Beef vs pork, best sauce, best smokehouse wood, and timing are all grounds for a spat, the moreso when anyone dares to question which regional recipe is "real" barbeque and which is "grilling". Not to mention gas versus charcoal.
  • A strange version takes place in the comments for this video, titled "Portlandia : Dream of the 90s". For the most part it consists of people declaring (with various levels of seriousness, but always generally in favor of Portland) its perfect accuracy. Then along comes one guy saying Portland is just a wannabe Austin. The mockery of Austin that follows more or less fits the tone of previous Portland worship, but the Texan guy still doesn't seem to get the joke.
  • Oregon in general is a testy one. From the Oregonian perspective, DON'T say you're from California or you'll be expected to be a spoiled and rude asshole who doesn't know how to drive and doesn't respect the history and culture of the state (in the Portland area this has morphed into a dislike of people from the East Coast over the past few years, thanks to the Hipster Invasion, even amongst people who came from the East Coast to Portland but did so years earlier). Also, DO NOT pronounce the last syllable of Oregon like "gone" or they'll never find your body. It's pronounced "gin," with a hard "g." Oregonians are also somewhat annoyed that it seems like the only things non-Oregonians know their state for is The Oregon Trail and Portlandia, instead of its many other accomplishments.
    • On the other side, Oregonians (in particular Portlanders, given that Portland is probably the only place in Oregon non-Oregonians have heard of) are thought of as being upjumped hipsters obsessed with their own quirkiness and lazy to a fault, and Portland/Oregon self-evidently being inferior to [insert commentator's home town/largest major city/home state here]. The TV show Portlandia has not been helpful in this regard, as it is viewed as being more of a documentary than the work of parody and humor it actually is. This is the reason why the show is unpopular in certain segments of Portland/Oregon society.
  • New Yorkers vs. New Jerseyans on the issue of rightful ownership of the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. The landmarks are technically on New Jersey's side of the Hudson River, and Jersey City uses the Statue of Liberty on official documents and on "Welcome to Jersey City" signs, yet legally, they are exclaves of the State of New York.note  The arguments can get quite fierce, especially as one gets closer to the Hudson.
    • Likewise, the fact that the New York area's two football teams, the New York Giants and Jets, play in a stadium located in East Rutherford, New Jersey. New Jersey governor Chris Christie even entered this fray by referring to one of the teams as the "Jersey Jets" as a Take That! against the team's owners for leaving "New York" in the name.
      • New York mayor Ed Koch famously denied the Giants a parade after their Super Bowl victory, arguing they should hold their parade "in front of the oil drums in Moonachie."
  • Downstate New York (the Big Applesauce, Long Island, and however much of the Hudson Valley one considers to be in New York City's orbit) versus upstate New York (everything else). The former views the latter as a bunch of Rust Belt bumpkins who would be bankrupt if they didn't have the City's tax dollars to mooch off of, while the latter views the former as a bunch of limousine liberals who think that the state of New York ends at White Plains (if not the Bronx), and get an undeserved amount of attention from State legislation. Having people immediately assume "I'm from New York" means the city doesn't help, nor does the commonality of antisemitism in upstate areas combined with NYC demographics. Each side blames the other for whatever problems the state of New York currently faces. Albany is an island unto itself, the Thunderdome where the two sides meet.
    • A near-identical dynamic exists in Illinois between Chicagoland and the rest of the state, in Georgia between itself and Atlanta. And between Los Angeles and San Francisco and the rest of California. And a similar rift has opened up in Colorado, over the issues of gun control and environmental regulation. This also applies to about 13 other states. In general, "blue states" tend to be dominated by liberal, cosmopolitan urban areas surrounded by vast swathes of conservative rural areas.
    • A similar dynamic is also true of Western Massachusetts vs. Boston, where the two have different cultures (though oddly Western Mass is more liberal despite being more rural), and where the former often feels like they get shafted in everything while Boston gets all the resources and attention. As such, anyone from Western Mass will be likely to emphasize the "Western" bit and get annoyed at being confused with Boston. This has all been true since before the US existed proper, resulting in Shay's Rebellion and part of why the Constitution was created. It is a rather one-sided fight, though, in that Western Mass dislikes Boston but Boston barely notices they exist, or already thinks of Western Mass as its own state, if not the moon.
    • Pennsylvania is often described as "Philadelphia in the east, Pittsburgh in the west, and Kentucky in the middle," referring to the vast rural area between the two cities, commonly known as "Pennsyltucky" (or "The T" if you're being politenote , which is every bit as culturally and politically distinct from the urban regions as you can imagine. It can be a bit annoying to Pennsylvanians from Pittsburgh or Philly—or one of the larger cities within the T like Harrisburg, Allentown, or Erie—since if you tell an outsider you're from Pennsylvania, their first thought is Amish Country.
    • Or for that matter if you're from anywhere in PA except Philadelphia. In the Midwest especially, people tend to hear "I'm from Pennsylvania" and immediately assume you mean Philly.
    • In Virginia, it's "Northern Virginia", i.e. anywhere roughly commuting distance from Washington, D.C., versus "Southside Virginia", the Richmond area and points south, east, and west. In North Carolina, it's the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area, the Charlotte area, and everywhere else. Both divides are similar to the New York City/upstate divide above, with the added wrinkle in NC's case that Raleigh is the capital, Durham is a heavily black city in a mostly white state, and Chapel Hill's main claim to fame is hosting the University of North Carolina. Then there's Asheville, which is full of crazy hippies (and craft breweries).
  • There's also a bit of state nationalism when it comes to Florida and California. A lot of Californians will point out that Florida is "like California but they replaced the fun with old people." However, Floridians will retort by pointing out that California is basically a desert and can't support a tropical climate like Florida does. This leads to citizens from the two states (usually people from central California vs. people from central Florida) calling each other "wannabes". Also, do not get between Californians and Floridians arguing about whose oranges are better.
  • Then there are the issues between Northern and Southern California, with the South seeing the North as a bunch of crazy hippies and nanny-state supporters, while the North views the south as a bunch of vapid celebrity- obsessed morons. This can get especially ugly whenever there’s a drought, with “They’re using our water to fill up their swimming pools!” type arguments being used.
  • There's also a bit of this between New Hampshire and Massachusetts. As far as NH residents are concerned, MA is a corrupt, ridiculously expensive, overdeveloped hellhole full of arrogant [M]assholes who couldn't care less about anyone other than themselves and think that they're the center of the universe, while MA residents think that NH is full of bedroom community dwellers who constantly talk trash about Massachusetts even though they have no problem working there, dumb hicks, and incredibly stupid and clueless libertarians. They have one thing in common, however: each one thinks that the other's motorists are the rudest, most incompetent morons on the planet.
  • Just mentioning whether or not states within the U.S. should secede will draw out people that hate the U.S. as it currently is and encourage states (and not necessarily their own states) to detach themselves from the Union, and people that will call anyone supporting a secession a traitor.
  • And then of course, there is Texas, known for people who are very vocally proud of their home state and who like to remind others that their state was a Republic before joining (or annexing, depending on your point of view and degree of tongue-in-cheek) the rest of the United States. It is not part of The South, and the opposite is also true (although Texas did secede and join the Confederate States of America during the American Civil War, and seceded from Mexico over the exact same issue, possibly making Texas Double South).
    • Many people from other states, particularly the Western or Northeastern, will be derisive towards Texans for their (perceived or otherwise) overtly conspicuous state patriotism and anti-intellectualism. Often times, Americans will comment that Texas is to the rest of America what American is to the rest of the world (eg, Some Americans blame Texas and sometimes Florida for their poor international reputation). The rivalry between New Mexico and Texas, which can be felt everywhere from local New Mexicans complaining about Texan drivers on mountain roads to state vs state lawsuits for rights over the water from the Rio Grande, is one sided — New Mexicans towards Texans — but still very real.
  • The Midwest (states west of the Mississippi river but not on the West Coast or in the South) vs. the rest of the country; due to the fact that most of the states in the Midwest are sparsely populated and consists mostly of farmland, the Midwest is often times considered politically irrelevant to the rest of the US (derisively nicknamed "Flyover Country" by some, implying that the only important parts of the country are those along the coast). This of course makes Midwesterners feel angry and marginalized by other Americans, especially in the Federal government. Of course, the trend of some politicians to appeal to Midwesterners by referring to them as "Real Americans/Real America" (whatever that means) also upsets those on the coast, who feel like these politicians are implying that they're somehow less American than corn.note 
    • This is to say nothing of the arguments about the electoral college. People from the coast will often say that "dirt shouldn't be allowed to vote" as vastly underpopulated areas get a lot of pull on a person by person basis as compared to someone from the coast. Of course, that is the entire point. The point of a republic as oppressed to a democracy is to ensure that the minority can't be oppressed by the majority. Popular vote is used in the USA, but so is proportional votes where your vote is worth more if there's less people in your area than if you had a lot of people in your area. To make it fair, though, Congress in both the state and federal levels has both a Senate and a House. Everyone gets equal say in the Senate whereas the House is based on population. Nonetheless, you will get a lot of people very angry whenever this system doesn't work in their political interests, but will praise it when it does.
  • Michigan and Ohio "fought" a "war" over Toledo when Michigan was about to become a state (1835-36). (We are aware, in retrospect, that there are fewer things more pathetic to fight a war over than Toledo.) Neither state has let the other forget about it since: Ohioans have a wonderful ditty that starts "I don't give a damn about the whole State of Michigan..." (to the tune of "The Old Gray Mare"), while Michiganders, as is their tight-lipped quasi-Canadian wont (as well as not considering Ohio worthy of any cute songs), simply say, "Screw Ohio." This war continues to be fought by proxy via the ongoing football rivalry between the Ohio State University Buckeyes and the University of Michigan Wolverines.
    • That being said, the end of the "war" was declared when the United States government declared Toledo as part of Ohio and gave Michigan the Upper Peninsula. In retrospect, the U.P. provides more revenue than Toledo ever could, but, ironically, people from the U.P. tend not to get along with people from the Mitten. The U.P. has long threatened to secede to Wisconsin or become its own state, the State of Superior. A lot this comes from the U.P. being more rural and a place for older people to retire to. Hilariously, Michiganders often get along better with Canadians than they do with people from the other peninsula.
  • To many people outside the U.S., America is a country where everybody sues each other over the most trivial things. They don't seem to realize that these "frivolous lawsuits" most often don't make it very far in the courts. Many Americans don't realize this either, thanks to news media that happily make headlines from idiotic lawsuits being filed, but will rarely follow up on them to reveal said lawsuits' nigh-inevitable dismissal.
  • While left-leaning Americans marvel and right-wing Americans recoil in horror at the universal healthcare systems of Canada and Europe, people from these countries express shock at an American healthcare system that allows people to go bankrupt from medical bills or die from lack of necessary treatment.


  • Canada, seemingly unified to other people, is actually extremely fragmented internally. Many provinces, not just Quebec, have a long history of isolationism within the country itself. For a long time after Confederation, the attitude was "British Columbians are British Columbians, Albertans are Albertans, etc." Nobody was Canadian. That attitude still carries over today, especially with the clashing cultures of French-speaking Canada and English-speaking Canada. All of this misplaced provincial and cultural pride fuels flame wars on a truly horrific scale. The most unifying factor appears to be hatred of Toronto.
    • Canadian joke: "There are three things that unite Canada: hockey, health care, and hating Toronto."
      • Other Canadian Joke: There is a genie, a Quebecer wishes for there to be a perfect wall around Quebec, so that no anglophones could get in. The next wish by another Canadian is to fill the wall up with water.
    • Go and ask an Anglo-Canadian, in their 30s to 50s about their opinion about Quebec. There's a good chance it won't be pretty.
      • However, the rivalry seems to be dying down in the younger generation as the Quebecois are turning away from independence, which was what made a lot of people from other provinces and territories dislike them.
    • Anti-Quebec sentiments flare up nigh-constantly over the tendency towards secession in Quebec, and Quebec's language laws.
    • The opposite sentiment has begun to arise with some Anglo-Canadians, who actually want to expel Quebec from Canada, with the most commonly cited reason being Québec's "moocher" status.
    • There's also a rivalry between Western Canada (Vancouver in particular) and Eastern Canada.
  • There is some rivalry between Canadians and Americans, mostly due to their geographic proximity. One tends to be the butt of the others' joke when both are referenced. While this is mostly joking in nature, a number of either may take serious offense, or take the jokes too far that they do cause offense. Similarly, mistaking one for the other can cause the mistaken party to take offense, mostly due to perceived negative stereotypes associated with the other.
    • For this reason, Canadians tend to be particularly incensed at South Americans insisting that the term 'American' refers to all residents of the Americas. It's taken as lumping Canadians in with Americans to an unacceptable degree. Canadians tend to not mind being called 'North American', however, perhaps because 'The North' is more associated with Canada than America.
  • Some left-leaning Canadians in particular will often display American-bashing attitudes similar to those of western Europeans, and enjoy criticizing the deficiencies of the American welfare state (particularly in contrast to the much-venerated Canadian health care system) or US foreign policy. In some Canadian circles, it is fashionable to associate all right-wing politics with America, and accuse right-wing Canadians of trying to import foreign, "American-style" ideas. In return, liberal Americans tend to mock the economic policies of Canada's Conservative Party government (despite the Conservative Party of Canada being very ideologically similar to the US Democratic Party).
  • Canada tends to have a longstanding anxiety about American conquest or annexation. The War of 1812 can be a particularly tense/passionate memory for many Canadians, who will, in turn, resent what they perceive to be a lack of American appreciation for how "wrong" American forces were in invading the British-Canadian colonies. The anxiety has modernized to a general fear that Canadian culture and economy is being subsumed by the much more powerful American version. To quote Prime Minister Trudeau, "Living next to [the United States] is in some ways like sleeping with an elephant; no matter how friendly and even-tempered is the beast, if I may call it that, one is affected by every twitch and grunt. Even a friendly nuzzling can sometimes lead to frightening consequences."
  • Similar to the above, there's South Park's "Blame Canada" song, which some Canadians decided to take as "Americans bashing Canadians", despite that it's really satirizing Moral Guardians.
    • Along the same vein, some Canadians take offense at "Weird Al" Yankovic's "Canadian Idiot", a parody of Green Day's American Idiot, that makes fun of American stereotypes of Canadians, more making fun of Americans than Canadians themselves.
  • Similar to Europe, right-wing Americans look at Canada as a "socialist nightmare" for its famous national healthcare program and progressive social policies. This naturally irritates most Canadians, who are just as proud of their multiculturalism and single-payer healthcare systems as Brits are of the NHS, while left-leaning Americans admire Canada for the same reasons right-wingers loathe it, with many of them threatening to move there whenever a Republican is elected president. Canadians will also point to Stephen Harper's nearly decade-long tenure as prime minister, as well as powerful oil and gas interests as proof that Canada isn't nearly as left-wing as its American admirers and detractors imagine it to be.


  • Basically every single video with a social commentary on modern Mexico will result in a massive flame war between Mexicans themselves.
  • Many Mexicans love to argue about who is the worst president ever.
  • For centuries Mexico's poverty has been blamed on foreign greed, be it from Spanish conquistadors or American capitalism. Chinese bashing (and even killing) was rife during the Mexican Revolution because their communities' prosperity in Mexico was a perceived sign of somehow stealing national treasure.
  • Mexican immigrants to the United States tend to be a sore spot between Mexicans and Americans. A number of Mexicans tend to dislike those that emigrate to America, considering them disloyal to their nation and heritage. In turn, some of these emigrants also express disdain toward those who chose to stay due their grievances with the country. Making things worse, is the amount of Mexican immigrants have illegally entered the country, which has not gone well with many Americans. Figuring out way on how to deal with this problem has been an endless source of debate and ire between Mexicans, Mexican-Americans (both legal and illegal), and other Americans. And then there are the parts of New England that think that Mexican immigrants should speak Portuguese or French Creole like normal Latinos.
  • Donald Trump's 2016 presidential bid in the United States was notorious for bashing Mexicans as a way of attracting votes and sympathies in the USA.
  • Mexico also has a lot of regional differences between the 32 states that compose the country, and rivalries between them (even sometimes between cities) often flare up. Especially vicious are those fights between Mexico City and everyone else.
  • Does the Quesadilla have cheese or not? For the people of Central Mexico (Estado de México, Mexico City and Morelos), that dish does not need to contain cheese, and it's just a tortilla with any kind of filling within. Those from outside this area (and especially in northern Mexico) will say that Quesadillas will always have cheese, and anyone suggesting otherwise must get out of their sight immediately.

Costa Rica

  • Never confuse Costa Rica with Puerto Rico in the presence of a Costa Rican citizen, if you don’t want trouble.
  • Costa Rica is famous for having a very isolationist policy toward Central America. The country is not a member of the regional parliament and its integrational policies are normally tame at best. Costa Ricans are also famous for considering themselves richer, whiter and more peaceful that their neighbors (something that, of course, is not necessarily true). Naturally, these causes resentment towards them in many Central American countries, especially Nicaragua.
  • Mexico and Costa Rica have a strong soccer rivalry that may cause very awful online fights, except for that; relationships between both countries are generally friendly.
  • Costa Ricans also feel very proud of the fact that they abolished the Army. Probably hard to understand for people in other countries that, on the contrary, are proud of their armies and military power, but for Ticos it is the other way around feeling that they are a particularly exemplary democratic and peaceful country that can lecture the world about pacifism and non-violence, something like the Gandhi of the countries. The fact that one of their presidents won the Nobel Peace Prize and that the country has mediated in many international peace agreements reinforce those beliefs.
  • Costa Ricans also tend to believe that their country has one of the world’s best democracies and that is one of the most democratic places. Costa Rica hasn’t had a coup or a civil war since 1948, nor a dictatorship for that matter, in a region where those were very common, and is often considered Latin America’s oldest (uninterrupted) democracy, yet of course many people among the intellectual elite may question this idyllic image.
  • In general, according to some intellectuals like writer and feminist Tatiana Lobo, Costa Rica’s nationalism is based around three basic myths; (white) race, democracy and peace.
  • Do not ever mention the Rio San Juan (a border river that due to some 19th century quirk belongs entirely to Nicaragua) when either Nicaraguans or Costa Ricans could overhear it. Most citizens of either country have never even been to the river (which is pretty but relatively remote and sparsely populated), but there is a lot of nationalistic bickering over it and both countries have sued each other in international courts repeatedly, especially during the Ortega (Nicaragua) and Chinchilla (Costa Rica) administrations.


  • People from Spanish or Portuguese-speaking nations (e.g. Spain, Portugal, Mexico, the countries of South and Central America) can be real Single Issue Wonks toward Americans on the subject of demonyms and etymology, bashing Americans for calling themselves "American." The reason this happens is threefold.

    First, people from Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries are taught that the Americas are not two continents, but one (Portuguese kids, from the 90s onwards, have been taught the two continents classification, so the Portuguese don't really have this issue), using the denominations of South America and North America to define subcontinents, even including a third one, Central America. In the United States, Canada, most English speaking countries and Asia, the Americas are referred to as two separate continents and are always called "North America" and "South America." Thus, where people from the former group would refer to people from the American continents as "Americans" in their own language, people from the latter group would say "North Americans" or "South Americans" in theirs.

    Second. Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countriesnote  often call Americans Estadounidense and Estadunidense (however, the Portuguese people say Estados Unidos), respectively, which literally means "United Stateser," despite Mexico, at least, also being Estados Unidos.note  Meanwhile, in English and most other languages, Americans are called "American" or a derivation thereof. To further complicate matters, in some of the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries the word Norteamericano is used to mean "citizen of the United States," where the equivalent English word means "person from the North American continent," including Canadians and Mexicans (at a minimum) as well as people from the US.

    Third. The legitimacy of the use of the term "American" and which should use it. Most people of Latin America have Amerindian ascendency apart from the Spanish and Africans ones note  and have, indeed, built their cultures and national identities over those mixed heritages, therefore, they can claim a continuity of the history of the people that first lived in America. In contrast, the US generally avoided a mixture of races for most of its history, making the foundations of its country the immigrants that came from the British possessions and shunning, and eventually, persecuting the original inhabitants of North America.

    This leads some to assume that Americans call themselves American out of ignorance of other countries in the Americas—or out of deliberate arrogance—even though the word's usage had been cemented in the English language well over a century before the United States was founded. In fact, the first known examples of the word "American" being used in English to mean "citizen of the British colonies" are found in The English-American: A New Survey of the West Indies, a book by Thomas Gage written in the 1640s. On the other hand, usage of the term "American" to define someone as "born in the continent of America" in Spanish and Portuguese predates the English definition since the first two arrived to the continent over a century before the English and the Royal Academy of the Spanish Language actually encourages the use of the word "Americano" to refer to everyone in the continent while speaking Spanish.
    • People prone to this tend to badger Americans with the specious platitude "America is a continent, not a country!" and call Americans "USicans" in English, or some derivation thereof. They'll also demand that others do the same—which is another source of Misplaced Nationalism itself.
  • The debate on where the border between Central America and North America lie and whether Central America is part of North America can get ridiculous pretty quick. Especially if some says Mexico is in South America, when it is actually 88% North America and 12% Central America (mostly Yucatan)

     Towards South American Countries 
  • Chileans vs. Argentinians/Bolivians/Peruvians debates get really nasty. It doesn't help that Bolivia and Peru have held a grudge against Chile for a long, long time (130 years since the war that caused the animosity and the wounds still haven't healed), while Argentina's relations with Chile are merely on-again/off-again. The fact that Chile has one of the best economy and living standards in all South America (being the country with the highest GDP per capita and scoring second place in HDI after argentina) does not help things, nor does the fact that the poorest of the three lost its access to the ocean to the other to (in a war it started, but still), making productive trade incredibly difficult.
    • Who invented pisco? Was it Chile? Was it Peru? You don't know what pisco is? Good! Stay the hell away from discussions about it!
  • Many threads or responses on Spanish dubbed clips on Youtube inevitably dissolve into bickering between those who prefer Spaniard!Spanish or Latin American!Spanish, generally over which audience it was intended for, and thus how it should be dubbed. Given just how regional the Spanish language can be, depending on which continent the speaker comes from (or often even just country or province), it's understandable, but leads to a lot of unnecessary flame wars over nationality and colonialism.
    • This also extends to using translations of titles of works as proof of which one is better, by virtue of how one of them tends to have a title more faithful to the original one, while the other has some bizarre Completely Different Title, being used as examples of the latter language's supposed failings. For example: The Spaniard!Spanish translation of Dragon Ball changed the name of the Kamehameha Wave to the "Vital Wave", leading those who prefer Spaniard!Spanish to answer that the Latin American!Spanish translation of 101 Dalmatians changed its title to "The Night of the Cold Noses," note  and so on.
    • There is a thing every Spanish speaker agrees on: That their own dialect/accent is the "purest", "real" and "original" Spanish, and all the rest are nothing but corruptions.
  • While Brazilians can have some conflicts with neighbors (particularly Friendly Rival Argentina), they usually indulge in in-fighting, since like the US it's a country of continental proportions. It's usually started by people from São Paulo, the richest and most populous city (and its namesake state; they have a reputation rather like that of New Yorkers), with usual targets being Rio de Janeiro (who have a reputation rather like that of Southern Californians), and the Northeast region.

     Towards European Countries 
  • See above where Americans get angry if Europeans don't know that America isn't one homogenous country? Europeans get just as angry when outsiders assume Europe is one country like America is, or generally homogenity of Europe.
    • An unfortunate attitude seems to see the English as the cultural equivalent of a blank screen or white noise. Americans who are 31/32 English and 1/32 Irish will frequently consider themselves "Irish", often because they've been led to believe that there is no such thing as English culture—it's the default against which actual cultures are measured.
  • Mocking and/or belittling French culture and History in front of Frenchmen will end badly for you. Frenchmen are, oddly enough, the perfect fusion of culturally proud and culturally hung up; which means, they acknowledge that there are flaws in their country and attitude, but it is THEIR privilege to bash themselves, and don't you dare try to do it.
    • Also, trying to address the separation of church and state lightly, especially if your country isn't a secular state. This is a VERY heated subject in France (with at least two regions Not legally-bound to respect it).
    • As for provincial infighting, (almost) all French consider themselves first French; but you'd better not confuse two region, especially if they are close to one another. And God have mercy on your soul if you make the mistake of believing Brittany is British.
    • Speaking of regions: French languages. Yes, plural. Bringing Canadian French, Belgian French, or any regional variation onto the table is bound to draw symbolic blood. And we're not even talking about the languages carrying independent wills or strong identity, such as Corsican, Breton, Alsatian or all the Occitan languages.
  • Mistaking a Scotsman, Irishman or Welshmen for an Englishman really annoys some of them. This also goes for using "England" to refer to the whole of the United Kingdom, or, indeed, referring to any British citizen, trait, or product as 'European'.
    • Accidentally including 'Ireland' into Great Britain is also bad form.
  • Youtube hosts a video flamewar between Brits (mostly English) and French where members make and post very nationalistic videos trying to prove that their country is the best and the other sucks.
  • Finns are very sensitive about things that come from Finland. Calling Nokia Japanese may actually make a Finn materialize from thin air to correct you. And for your own sake, never mistake anything Finnish (like The Moomins) for Swedish.
    • Finns also get very upset at people calling them Scandinavians. Everyone in Northern Europe uses the term "the Nordic Countries" to refer to Finland, Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Iceland, while Scandinavia is a region made up of only Sweden, Denmark and Norway.
      • There are conflicting definitions of "Scandinavia", for some it is just Sweden and Norway, but not Denmark. Also, if you ask a physical geographer, the "Scandinavian Peninsula" excludes Denmark but includes northern Finland. The "Nordic countries" also can include the Faroe Islands, Iceland and Greenland.note 
  • Naturally, given the history between Ireland and the United Kingdom (but England in particular), it's very easy to rile up tensions between denizens of the two. Similarly, between Ireland and Northern Ireland, which remains a part of the United Kingdom. And Northern Ireland and the rest of the United Kingdom. And between the different denizens of Northern Ireland, many of whom have very strong opinions on exactly whether they should be part of either Ireland or the United Kingdom.
    • This extends into real life, where a lot of (Catholic) Americans, often ex-pats or with Irish ancestors, often took the side of the IRA during the Troubles. Bono of U2, a born-and-bred Dublin lad, was very annoyed at those kind of people, especially after Enniskillen.
    • This also tends to be an accusation leveled at Americans who have an opinion about the Troubles, the IRA, or Anglo-Irish relations in general, that unless you were born in Ireland or England, you need to shut up about your opinions (or even better, not have one). This is despite the fact that opinions regarding other political issues (the US Civil War,note  China vs. Taiwan, Palestinian/Israeli conflict, etc.) usually don't require being from the region.
  • A lot of countries have grievances against the UK due to the Empire she had in the past. Ethiopia, which Britain liberated from the Italians (who never really managed to take over, but did make everybody miserable and precluded any other effective government), is still pissed the Brits decided to stick around and try to take over instead of going home.
  • Suffice it to say, the United Kingdom is like a storm in a teapot. The various territories that make up the UK all have their own prides that clash with each other. Some of the British have developed a knack for self-deprecation humour, suggesting that they're the worst people in at least of all of Europe, and are the most irritating visitors note . Others have pointed out that England, and to a lesser extent, Wales, get the worst of everything within the UK note , paying large sums of money to Scotland and in England's case, not having their own national parliament like Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.
    • Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland would point out that the reason they need their own Parliaments is because they are vastly outnumbered by the English. Whichever party wins the UK election does so because it has the majority of English votes; there are many more people in that one country than the other three put together. Once Parliament is in session, England retains this advantage: Scotland has 59 representatives (MPs), Wales 40 and Northern Ireland 18 — a total of 117. England has 533 — over quadruple the representatives of the other three countries. This means that, theoretically, all the MPs of Wales, Scotland and N. Ireland could vote against a proposal, but if just 326 of the 533 English representatives vote in favour of it, it will go through. Devolution grants a limited measure of protection for the smaller countries, but their powers are still limited by Westminster...which holds the power to abolish any of the three devolved Parliaments at any time (a proposal to make the Scottish Parliament permanent was voted a vote dominated by the English MPs). Oh, and if you thought that the esteemed Members of Parliament were above misplaced nationalism and taking cheap digs at their neighbours? Think again.
    • Who pays who in the UK is a source of endless Flame War fuel. Many English people will maintain that they subsidise Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales to their own disadvantage. Many Scots will grumble that Scots pay more tax per head than English people do, and anyway, Westminster helps itself to Scotland's oil. Meanwhile, those in Wales and Northern Ireland might grouch that the constant bickering between England and Scotland puts Welsh and N. Irish budgets to the bottom of the list. Think of the UK as a bickering family and you won't go far wrong.
    • Then you've got the bickering within the individual countries themselves. Never confuse Yorkshire with Lancashire!
      • Or North of the River Thames with the South, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne with Gateshead (or call anyone south of the Tyne a Geordie), or confuse any of the North-East English cities with one another or you'll get similar reactions. The English can get culturally territorial over mere square miles of land!
    • The perception by Scottish and Welsh people that they are run as colonies by a distant and uncaring administration in London is seeping into the north of England for much the same reasons; there is discontent in the North that whoever they vote for, they are outnumbered by a far more populous South and South-East that effectively dictates by weight of numbers who runs the country. Many northern people will snarkily say that at least Scotland and Wales now have a measure of local autonomy — and we don't. this feeling of alientation and a suspicion that Britain is run purely for the benefit of London and the South-East is thought to have contributed to the North voting for Brexit — just to stick it to London and its (perceived) out-of-touch insular intelligensia, in a big way (the irony being the people most backing Brexit were probably the most snobbish and out-of-touch people from the South. This means some more left-leaning people in the South perceive the North as being racist idiots for voting for Brexit, especially when many parts of the North decided to vote Tory instead of Labour for the first time due to their desire for Brexit, believing the North has screwed themselves over considering economic assessments of the effects of Brexit shows ironically many of the areas most in favour of it will be among the worst hit).
    • Thanks to Stag parties going abroad to cheap Eastern European cities like Budapest, Prague and Riga you're seeing a new brand of annoyance toward the stereotypical annoying British tourist. This results in a bizarre twist of fate wherein it is recommended that Americans visiting Spain make it clear that they're American and not British. Many older Brits are apologetic for the UK being associated with the lad culture of cheap, Anglo-centic tourist-oriented package holidays in Benidorm and suchlike. When visiting Spain they will try to stay in smaller towns and discover the native Spanish culture. However, the economy is reliant enough on tourism that most places will be multilingual anyway (especially as there are large numbers of German tourists/expats as well).
  • Special mention goes to the Scotland/England feud, which goes back a long time (people still talk about The Wars of Independence, which started in 1286) but has been given fervour by the ongoing independence debate. A lot of Scottish nationalists' rhetoric comes across as less 'pro-independence' and more 'anti-English', whereas the English arguments against independence can come across on occasion as rather patronising arguments for why Scotland is rubbish/wouldn't survive on its own (note: it should go without saying that Scottish unionists tend to feel the same way as these English naysayers, but with the context of more pride for Scotland within the UK than said naysayers). Tempers on all sides are easily inflamed, made even worse by the political divide (the current Prime Minister is a Tory, a party with very little support in Scotland, so the mutual animosity there doesn't help).
    • Even more special mention goes to the Wales/England feud which goes back even longer than the Scottish/English one but which runs along similar lines. The Welsh tend to feel even more hard-done-by than the Scottish do.
    • English people can get fed up with being the "bad guys" of the UK — the blame for Britain's crimes (like slave trading and empire building) tends to be thought of as an English wrongdoing (if only for the fact that "British" so often gets interpreted as "English"). Even if the other three countries benefited from these crimes, they usually get a free pass.
    • Some English people will loudly object that if the Scots/Welsh/Northern Irish think that England's so terrible, they can leave (a common complaint is "they should have let US vote in the Scottish referendum — we'd have kicked them out!") ...only for nationalists in those countries to bite back that they'd love to, but one look at Westminster's conduct during and after the Scottish referendum would suggest that Westminster will try anything to prevent them from doing just that.
    • Similarly, after the Brexit vote, the Scots and Northern Irish blamed the English, whilst the English who did want to remain expressed interest in moving to any of those countries rather than staying in England. Everyone forgot that the Welsh also voted to leave (though ironically some assessments show most Welsh people favoured Remaining but English people in Wales tipped the balance).
    • One of the frustrating things for Scottish unionists is the proviso that because Brexit is perceived to promise economic harm and social division for Scotland, so it should separate from the UK. But this proviso is weakened in their eyes by the idea that independence (or Scexit) is somehow meant to be a magic bullet solution for these problems, but in fact all expert opinion suggests that it would bring its own economic disruption, social upheaval and popular division.
    • Tied into that is the fact that, even if we accept the nationalist premise that Scotland leaving the UK and then joining the EU will be as good or better for the country than it remaining in the UK (irrespective of whether Brexit actually happens), Scotland does not currently meet the membership requirements for joining the EU. Therefore, say unionists, we will have to endure a period of austerity so much greater than that as part of the UK under the Tory government (said Tory austerity which Scottish nationalists claim to hate so much) that Scotland will end up effectively bankrupt before it can even join the EU. This dilemma only looks even more stark in the context of the current Coronavirus pandemic; furlough for Scottish workers was achieved by the UK Treasury, but would be a much more difficult proposition for an independent Scotland alongside its other financial obstacles.
  • If you are Portuguese, any mention of your nationality in a Brazilian website will start a Flame War.
    • Also do not confuse Portugal with Spain. It won't end well.
  • During and just after the 2008 Olympics, there have been a few Australians that got really mad at Britain purely because they got more medals, when normally it's the other way around.
    • Similarly, some Australian sour grapes were noted in 2005 after England defied convention and actually won the Ashes. On the whole, though, Australians are an easy-going and relaxed lot... unless it's sport you're dealing with.
    • A more serious and historical sore point was Britain's conduct during the Second World War; after the surrender of Singapore, the British seemed to have abandoned Australia wholesale. This is sometimes referred to as "the Great Betrayal", and is often brought up by Australian republicans as a reason to exit the Commonwealth.
  • Sibling rivalry is alive and well with Swedes vs Finns. While sports may occasionally be Serious Business, everything else is taken as a joke. Finns and Russians, on the other hand ...
    • And then there's Sweden and Norway. It's playful in most contexts—such as between descendants of Scandinavian immigrants in Midwestern America—but has the potential to turn ugly when World War II comes up. Likewise, smaller flame wars occur when discussing who shot Charles XII. The whole 1814 thing may also stir some resentment on the Swedish side.

    • And if Riget is reliable, the Swedes and Danes have their issues. "DANSKJÄVLAAAAAAAAR!!!"
      • Sweden and Denmark are the leaders of the "Most wars fought throughout history"-league, beating England/the UK and France by a pretty wide margin. Scania (the southernmost part of Sweden) is particularly sore due to being the heartland of Swedish ultra-nationalism and having a small but Vocal Minority which prefers to identify as Danish.
      • In Denmark, "Half-Swede" is a derogatory term for people from Copenhagen (because it's the nearest point in the country to Sweden). While it might sound like a playful aside to anyone not from Denmark, it's actually a pretty serious insult and not something you would ever say as a joke.
  • Norway has their internal language struggle, with heavy Misplaced Nationalism on both sides. Nice work if you can get it. Never insult a "bokmål" user by telling him he writes "Dano-Norwegian", and likewise, never insult a "nynorsk" user by implying he doesn`t write Norwegian at all.
    • Then, there is the Sami question. Because of massive cultural suppression, any discussion on ownership to the Finnmark Plateau might end up in a fistfight — and Norwegians may be despised as "bloody southerners" for the heck of it.
  • Russia, from everything in the general vicinity, especially from Eastern Europeans and Central Asians.
    • Don't mistake other Eastern Europeans for Russians unless you really want to see who is first to punch you in the face.
      • And don't even think about doing the same with Central Asians.
    • And if you happen to mention something genuinely positive or sympathetic about Russian Empire and/or Soviet Union, you'd better not equate them with Russia and Russians only, ignoring all the other nations (especially if the thing in question wasn't confined to the territory of present-day Russia). Of course, blaming all the drawbacks of USSR/Russian Empire on Russians alone is another matter.
  • Much of Eastern Europe that is not Russia would prefer to be associated as anything OTHER than Eastern Europe. Poles and Hungarians often vehemently claim to be in central Europe. Estonia has few qualms with being clumped with the Nordic countries due to close ties with Finland. Latvia and Lithuania sometimes are considered part of northern Europe despite having been part of the USSR. Just don't tag them as "The East" and they are fine.
  • Feuds between Russia and the United States can be pretty intense in pretty much anything, especially during the 20th century; when it was Communism vs. Capitalism in a nutshell. Since the fall of the Soviet Union, it isn't as frequent, but most jokes seem to be more for laughs at the expense of Russian Reversal jokes and Russian spies for the Americans. For its neighbors, there's several hundred more years of bad history to get over.
  • While we are talking about Russia vs USA, DO NOT claim that the Eastern Front of WWII was "Evil Versus Evil": Nazis planned to kill millions of Soviet citizens after their victory, whereas Soviet occupation of Germany, while rather brutal at times, brought nothing quite comparable to Nazi atrocities in the occupied Soviet Union. So "Brutishly Cruel vs. Cruelly Brutish", perhaps. But not Evil Versus Evil; the war wasn't a personal fistfight between Hitler and Stalin.
    • And on the same topic — if you're talking to any Eastern European except Russian, do not say that Nazi Germany was fought by "Russia" and "Russians", instead of "nations of Soviet Union" (and if you happen to talk to Estonian, Latvian or Lithuanian, it's better to omit the topic altogether, unless you're ready to condemn Soviet occupation of Baltic states).
    • Russians tend to focus on the people who fought for their country and their lives and tend to avoid any talk about the period of Stalinism. With that said, do not claim to them that Stalin is in any way comparable to Hitler, or the USSR with Nazi Germany, especially with the common misconception that Stalin's USSR somehow killed more people than Hitler's Germany. While Stalin had his fair share of mass killings, the Nazi invasion of the Soviet Union killed 20 million+ Soviet civilians.
  • Do not call anything Russian "Communist" or "Commie", snap out of that cold war mindset already. Communists are no longer in power or even influential in Russia for more than twenty years, and the current Russian government is closer to the Tsarist one in ideology.
  • When you are talking to a Ukrainian person, don't call Ukraine "the Ukraine", unless you want to get your face punched in — "the Ukraine" implies that Ukraine (no "the") is Russian territory as it marks the place out as a region rather than a (nation)-state. This is because "Ukraine" translates to "at the border" or "Borderland" — calling it 'the Ukraine' goes towards a title describing a location rather a name of a sovereign state that is derived from said location. That said, for most Ukrainians it's just a bit annoying rather than a Berserk Button — it just sounds silly, like calling the USA "the country-land of the USA" or something.
    • Ukrainians are also increasingly insistent that their capital city be spelled "Kyiv" in Latin alphabet languages rather than "Kiev", the name that most in the West had been using for decades. That's because "Kiev" is the transliteration of the Russian name (Киев) and "Kyiv" is the transliteration of the Ukrainian name (Київ). The Russian name was the official name when Ukraine was part of the Russian Empire and then the Soviet Union. And many Ukrainians, especially those in the western half the country (where anti-Russian sentiment runs the highest) see use of the Russian name as undermining Ukraine's independence.
  • Anything regarding Ukraine at all — unless you really know the stuff you're talking about. Moreover, the country being divided into factions which hate each others' guts, you are almost guaranteed to rub someone the wrong way if you say anything of Ukraine at all.
    • Though with the escalation of Russo-Ukrainian war in 2022 the common denominator for pretty much everyone living in the Ukraine-controlled territory is that they all hate Russia and Russians.
    • Also, it is a good idea to NEVER EVER say that Lviv/Lwow is a Polish city where anyone can hear you, especially if they are from Western Ukraine, because it will launch a huge Flame War. (For the record, since the post-WWII ethnic cleansing organised by the USSR it's no longer ethnically Polish.)
      • Of course, Poles don't deny they conquered it during the Polish-Soviet war and organized some light ethnic cleansing under Joseph Pilsudski's military dictatorship in the '20s and '30s, they simply point out that the whole area was conquered and Polonized in 1356, so some of the people evicted from Lviv in 1945 and their families had been living there for almost 600 years.
      • If you see Ukranians and Russians in the same place, never ever try to mention Crimea. Never ever, period. The matters concerning the territorial status of this peninsula are so controversial you won't be able to mention them without whipping up a huge hellfire.
      • DO NOT say that Ukraine stole all of its culture, language and traditions from Russia, because the person you are talking to will tell you to crack open a history book, and proceed to tell you over and over that it's not true. (It was "Rus" back then, centered mostly on the present-day Ukraine — what is now Russia started as more of a periphery but gradually became another center. The debate is largely about who is the true heir to that Early Medieval nation.) And the chances are that an unprepared Russian won't even understand a sentence spoken in Ukrainian literary language.
      • Also don't claim that the said Early Medieval nation was called "Russia", and its inhabitants "Russians". Historians nowadays use "Rus" (pronounced exactly as it is spelled, i.e. "u" is like in "put"; occasionally written with an apostrophe at the end to indicate the softness of the last consonant) and "Rusians" (that's it, single "s"), to emphasize that they were distinct from both Russians and Ukrainians. If you're at loss with the word, you could always resort to the safe "East Slavs" and "East Slavic state".
      • In fact, don't mention Russia at all. People get upset, people rant and argue, and it gets very, very messy and political. Here's a famous Russian joke:
      1961. Yuri Gagarin has just made the first human spaceflight. A Ukrainian shepherd shouts to his neighbor on the next hill:
      Shepherd: Mykola! The Moskalinote  have flown into space!
      Mykola: All of them?
      Shepherd: No, just the one.
      Mykola: So why are you bothering me, then?
  • A notable Eastern European aversion is Belarus, which due to the peculiar nature of its political regime (which sort of carries on Soviet internationalist rhetoric) generally doesn't hold a particular grudge against any of the neighbors. However, some Belarusians can still get offended if you conflate them with Russians — or suggest that Grand Duchy of Lithuania was a Lithuanian state.
  • Poland has about as much rivalry with its neighbors as Russia. Between the World Wars this was Serious Business as the Russian Empire collapsed and Poland went to war over its old commonwealth territories in what is now Belarus, Ukraine and Lithuania and got into diplomatic spats with Czechoslovakia for good measure. 70 years of tyranny later they can't agree on much, resulting in a collective European Face Palm
    • Suprisingly, Poles like to argue with themselves as much as with neighbors. There is an old saying that goes ''where two Poles, there will be five partiesnote . If you start any political or historical topic in Poland, you're boud to found as much people agreeing with you as those who disagree (sometimes just for the heck of it). Also, most Poles are experts in anything related to politics and history, and you shouldn't forget that.
    • Poles still don't care for Germans all that much, but the hate for the Russians has come to trump that old hostility for now.
      • However, President Obama just learned that the best way to rouse an entire nation to fiery righteous indignation is to call Auschwitz, Sobibor, Treblinka and other Nazi extermination camps "Polish death camps." note  When even Donald Tusk, the Polish prime minister, is tweeting about what a yutz you are for saying it, you KNOW you've crossed a line.
      • Don't remind Poles and Lithuanians that they have more than a little shared history. The nationalists on both sides STILL get into it over Vilnius/Wilno, the present capital of Lithuania.
    • Polish jokes abound for much of the 20th century in the U.S. Mostly played for laughs, but can cause trouble in heavily Polish cities like Chicago and Pittsburgh.
      • Those jokes pretty much ended in 1979 with the advent of two Poles: Lech Walesa, the leader of Solidarity, and Karol Cardinal Wojtyla, Pope John Paul II.
    • Poles consider their language to be a thing of art while Czechs speak an odd, drunken form of Polish. Czechs have a similar but reversed opinion on Polish. Everyone else wishes both would learn how to use vowels.
    • When talking with Poles, you should steer clear of any WWII — related topics, unless you really want to start a flame war of similar magnitude. Especially dangerous topics includes:
      • France and England Cavalry Refusal in 1939 — though in reality there is much more to that, many Poles are still bitter about being "betrayed" by their allies.
      • Soviet Union attacking Poland in 17 September 1939, and anything related to Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact.
      • Warsaw Uprising — both validity of it (opinions vary from "valiant act of heroism" to "sheer idiocy"). The fact that rest of the world doesn't react (which — again — is not the whole story) also tickles many Poles in a wrong way.
      • Yalta Conference... remember that "betrayed" part? Despite the fact that it was impossible for Poland to ended up on the other side of the Iron Curtain (bar Western Allies starting a nuclear war with Soviet Union), many Poles still consider themselves being "sold" at Yalta.
  • Hungary versus Slovakia and especially Romania. There is no limit to the number of self-proclaimed patriots in Hungary when someone mentions Romania; same with Slovakia when someone mentions Hungary.
  • Romanians are generally not very nationalistic and they deride and make fun of themselves most of the time, until you bring up Hungary, Russia, the Ottomans and Tatars. If a foreign power has ruled over Romanian lands, Romanians hate them. Except Romans.
    • Mentioning Transylvania and Hungary in the same sentence is a surefire way to get punched. In the 2014 World Cup qualifying stages, Romania and Hungary shared the same group. When the Romanian anthem was sung, hungarian fans started booing. Romanians responded by whipping out a sign with 1918 written on it, the year when Romania defeated Hungary and took Transylvania.
    • Bessarabia is a milder, but still strong issue. The sentiment that it belongs to Romania has not died down.
    • Communism and the Soviet Union is still a very touchy issue, combined with historically justified mistrust of Russia and the fact that Romanians are a Latin-speakingnote  people in a sea of Slavs leads to Romanians having universal contempt for the Russians. With that said, former communist dictator Nicolae Ceaușescu is admired by a large section of Romanian nationalists today, mostly for challenging the authority of the USSR during his rule.
  • When they became independent from the USSR, Moldova's nationalists have gone to great lengths to insist they are not Romanians and do NOT speak Romanian despite the fact that Moldovan is largely considered to be Romanian with a different accent.
  • Serbs, Croats, Bosnians and Kosovar Albanians. Many times, their flame-wars are enough to make you want to Face Palm.
    • Slovenes distance themselves far from their South Slavic cousins as result of the mess between the aforementioned groups.
      • Flame Wars still do erupt between Slovenes and Croats though (particularly as a result of a still unresolved minor territorial dispute).
    • Historically (as in, the 90s) more of Flame Bait wherever the Serbs and Croats were involved.
    • After 20 years, the former Yugoslavia is still splintering into factions with Kosovo declaring independence, but not being recognized 100%.
    • Kosovo has another problem. Even the names of places is a hot topic.
  • Related to the former Yugoslavia, Macedonia gets some flack from Greece, who think the country isn't worthy of using the name of Alexander the Great's homeland.
    • It is less a worthiness test and more annoyance that the very name Macedonia implies a territorial claim to part of Greece.
  • Also related to Yugoslavia is Italy vs. Slovenia and/or Croatia (this isn't very common today, but it goes a long way into the past, starting with the expansion of medieval Venice onto the Eastern Shore of the Adriatic, all the way to the forced "Italianization" of Istria and Dalmatia by the Fascist regime and the Foibe massacres in the early years of Tito).
  • Within Belgium there is the impression that there is a three-way going on between nationalist Flemish, nationalist Walloons and federalist Belgians. It is however way more complex than that. Belgium is actually composed of 3 lingual communities, which are Flanders, Wallonia and the German speaking region Eupen-Malmédy. Mentioning that Belgium has only 2 languages can already easily lead to backlash from the German speaking region.
    • There's also the minor "Whole Netherlands" and "All Netherlands" Dutch/Flemish nationalism which wants to join all of Belgium or only the Flemish Parts into one country with the Netherlands. Godwin's Law, which in this case is historically accurate, will often be used as a counterargument if only the Flemish parts are concerned.
    • Mentioning Belgium to the Congolese tends to get interesting reactions that tend to stem more from the Democratic Republic's first president dying under mysterious circumstances (with the US, the only other suspect, admitting that it tried and failed to assassinate the guy) and the militias that still plague the country having suspicious start-up funding than the decades of colonial oppression.
    • The border between Flanders and Wallonia is entirely artificial. Demanding to change it can easily lead to this.
    • Brussels is in general a very touchy subject for the country, to the point that its considered to be a separate region. Discuss it with caution.
    • Monarchy in general can be a Berserk Button in less-informed areas. It usually starts with one guy bringing up that the king of Belgium sucks and that Belgium needs to cease being a monarchy followed by another guy bringing up how proud Belgium should be of its "amazing" king and that he has "a poor and miserable life". This also tends to give some small debates in political circles, but most politicians barely bother. It is true that the king does get a lot of money (1 million dollars a year) and that he does not do much to earn it (such as declaring the opening of a building, signing declarations etc.), but he has a big royal palace that needs extravagant sums of money to be maintained and has plenty of activities that are expensive, which shows that his existence allows for a more thriving economy. He also has barely any political power. All he can do is select out of a few hundred politicians who is going to form the government. Meaning that he has no hand in parliament or justice affairs. The fact that the Belgian royal family in general is extremely polarizing even to foreigners (look at the atrocities committed by King Leopold II because of how he treated Congolese on the bad end and King Albert I's progressive and neutral policy (especially during World War 1) on the good end) and that some kings did show abuse their power (such as King Baudouin of Belgium refusing to sign the abortion law because his wife was unable to have any children) does however seem to do its best to keep that debate a big one.
      • It should come as no real suprise, but if you think that Belgians think of their king as a holy being (like in the United Kingdom, Thailand or the Netherlands) you are going to be very disappointed.
    • King Leopold III Of Belgium is also a controversial issue. He has fans that consider him a pacifist and probably the best king Belgium ever had. His haters would however say that he was an egomaniac that collaborated with the Nazi Germany and hold him up as the worst king that ever ruled over Belgium.
    • Dutch opinions about Belgians tend to be quite aggravating, as they talk about Belgians as if they were die-hard Francophiles that would become subservient slaves to the French at any given moment. This tends to not go over well with Belgians because there has barely been any kind of alliance with the French. Meanwhile, the French often talk about Belgians as if they were all ultra-patriotic for something that you can barely be proud of and as if they were very Francophobic.
    • Antwerp versus West/East Flanders. Or as they say, "Only Antwerp counts, the rest is parking lot". This one has many many subdebates:
      • Antwerp has easily the biggest port of all Flemish cities, but whenever you would go to West- and East-Flanders the answer is often "Antwerp has the biggest port, but the one in Zeebrugge/Ghent is pretty big too.". Needless to say it does not amuse the people of Antwerp to see their port lowered to such a level.
      • Antwerp (which as of now proudly proclaims itself as the Belgian equivalent of Texas) is proudly talking about how their city is one of the best cities in the world, only to get bitten back by West and East Flanders how there is next to no historical heritage present in the province in contrast to West and East Flanders, which have monuments dating back from Roman times and that Antwerp in general is fully commercial and just plain ugly.
      • You may think of the Flanders/Wallonia debate as being there for the entire Belgian population and while that is true to a certain extent opinions range there from "Let Belgium still be united. French are not all that bad." (The West of West-Flanders) to "Flanders needs to separate from Wallonia to get reunited with The Netherlands immediately" (Antwerp). Yes, even in Flanders itself people are unsure of the future of Flanders.
    • West-Flemish have a regional dialect that in general tends to diverge a lot from the more known and mainstream Flemish dialects that are spoken by the more general population. This is why many Flemish TV Stations subtitle when a West-Flemish person speaks on TV. This also tends to anger the West-Flemish population who take it as an offense that their dialect that they can very well comprehend gets subtitled for what they see as pandering to the population of Antwerp and Brussels. Thus expect flame wars to happen whenever a West-Flemish gets on TV.
  • Dutchmen are a bit testy if you compare them to their neighbors, the Germans. Never say their language is a dialect of German. That would be in general absurd. As in that you then also could consider Norwegian, Swedish, Danish, Icelandic and English to be a dialect of German.
    • Similarly, don't say they speak Dutch in Germany simply because the name of that country in its language (Deutsch) is Deutschland note .
    • A similar reaction can be gotten from many Belgians by comparing their country to the Netherlands. It doesn't help that the Dutch have an entire category of jokes about "dumb" Belgians (despite the fact that the Belgian education system generally is considered better than the Dutch, to the point that Dutch parents who live near the border, often send their children to Belgian schools).
    • Comparable to the "Yankee" caution above, if you're not sure where in the Netherlands they come from, don't refer to them being from "Holland". "Holland" is only acceptable to describe the densely populated coastal area, excluding Zealand of course. And when any Dutch person is cheering on the national team, because the word is easier to chant. Many Dutch people, when speaking in English, do refer to their country as Holland. It's sort of like saying America instead of United States, ie not factually accurate, but widely used enough to be seen as normal by most. But it's best not to make this assumption with all Dutch people, and only call it Holland if they do.
    • The Netherlands is actually the host of 2 languages, which are Dutch and Friesiannote . Mentioning that people in the Netherlands only speak Dutch will cause a Dutchman to correct you. That is not even mentioning how problematic it is for people that are actual Friesians.
    • Within the Netherlands:
      • There's a pretty sharp divide between the Randstad—the urban agglomeration consisting of the four largest cities (Amsterdam, Rotterdam, the Hague, Utrecht) and everything in between— and the rest, which includes more rural regions. Those from the rest feel like those from the Randstad don't seem to realize that the Netherlands consists of more than the big cities, and tend to think of them as rude.
      • Friesland, the only province that has its own language, proudly sports its own flag, and sometimes jokingly talks about separating itself from the rest of the Netherlands.
      • The two southern provinces of Brabant and Limburg, which both speak with markedly different accents than the rest of the Dutch and have more Catholics as opposed to the Protestant majority in the other provinces. Mainly because those from the other provinces often mistake inhabitants of those two provinces with each other, which is kind of a Berserk Button to both of them.
      • Amsterdam versus Rotterdam. Especially when football (soccer) gets involved, with their respective teams of Ajax and Feyenoord. And don't bring up Eindhoven's PSV, and the Hague's ADO Den Haag on the same conversation either; this rarely ends well.
      • And then there's people who are (or whose parents originally were) immigrants and hate being mistaken for each other by the "white" Dutch. Those of Turkish and those of Moroccan descent tend to be mistaken for each other, to their mutual annoyance; as well as those of Surinam descent and those of the Antilles Islands and vice versa; and those of Chinese and of Indonesian descent and vice versa .
  • Austrians are not Germans, and the concept of a united Germany and Austria is politically dead in both countries and is often considered to be something of a Neo-Nazi platform. Despite being ethnically German, Austrians have been spending decades cultivating a national identity that isn't considered "German but not in Germany."
    • The applies similarly to Switzerland, which has spent centuries cultivating their own "Swiss" identity, despite having origins in French, German, and Italian ethnicity. Switzerland is considered the first (and maybe last) successful multi-ethnic country.
  • The 16 Lands of Deutschland generally feature a lot of regional nationalism (mostly expressed in German Humour and football riots) to make up for the fact that pan-German nationalism has become something of a faux-pas. Notable example include:
    • The feud between the two great carnival metropolises of Cologne and Mainz; for instance, one city's traditional carneval greeting would be donwright considered an insult in the other.
    • The tensions between states from either side of the former inner-German border; East Germans are popularly seen as piss-poor and backward-minded, whereas West Germans are seen as decadent and spineless.
    • Bavaria towards everyone else. The Free State of Bavaria is to Germany what Texas is to the US — loud, proud and rather obnoxious. It tends not to consider itself "German" (and will rudely remind anyone who dares to make the mistake), and have some sort of xenophobic attitude going on for any other German-speaking region (such as Baden-Württemberg, its westward neighbour whom it sees as a bunch of rude bullheaded hippies, Berlin, which suffers doubly for being Prussian and the capital city, and Austria, who is Bavaria's direct eastern neighbour and has at different points in history been either its worst foe or its closest ally).
      "Extra Bavariam nulla vita, et si vita, non est ita" — Bavaria's inofficial motto
      • And within Bavaria, don't you ever imply that someone from Nuremberg is from Bavaria. They are Franconians Goddammit! And if it hadn't been for bloody Napoleon, they would have never been colonized by those idiots from Munich (two hour rant about every "Bavarian" injustice in the last two hundred years optional but highly likely)
      • Franz Josef Strauß is a guaranteed Berserk Button, even though he died in 1988. In Bavaria he is the equivalent of Ronald Reagan and regarded as a saint — they even named the airport of Munich after him. Criticize Strauß — even minor things such as his failure to win the 1980 election — at your own peril if Bavarians are around. Everywhere else and especially among non-conservatives he is regarded as a dangerous radical at best and some sort of second coming of the Nazis at worst. It does not help that he was involved in one of the biggest scandals regarding press freedom in post war German history or that the 1980 campaign of his opponent Helmut Schmidt was literally "Stoppt Strauß!". Still, when he died there was a lot of Antagonist in Mourning and today some people who openly proclaim to hate him say they wished he was still around, because the politicians of today are not even worth hatred.
    • While the East-West divide might have been important 1949-1989 and is still a source of some jokes (mostly on the expense of Saxony, which has a distinct dialect), the more important cultural boundary is North-South, with most of the former East being part of the North. People from Hamburg make fun of Southerners having no clue about maritime life and people from the South make fun of Northerners having no clue of mountains. And than there are debates on Beer versus Korn (a liquor made from grain), Pils versus Helles (two types of beer) or whether the word for Saturday is "Sonnabend" or "Samstag". Meanwhile Central Germany sits on the sidelines and only complains when being lumped in with either side.
      • Some of this divide actually has religious overtones. Most of the South is Catholic and most of the North is Protestant (but don't assume someone is Catholic just because they are from the South, Erlangen for instance is mostly Protestant)
  • Montenegrins are not Serbs, or even Bosniaks, although with how recent the breakup of Yugoslavia was, many Montenegrins are still struggling with their own ethnic identity (the number of self described 'Serbs' and 'Bosniaks' continues to fluctuate wildly with each census). The Montenegrin government has officially classified Montenegrin as its own ethnicity as well.
  • Anything involving Vatican City. Mentioning the smallest country in the World will easily set off some the biggest berserk buttons. This includes the events leading up to the creation of Vatican City, its religion, its government/administration, and even its dress code. If you can help it, just don't mention it.
  • Do NOT call Europe a country within earshot of just about anyone from it (but particularly the British and the French).
  • In military circles, American equipment is typically believed to be horrible, useless, and infinitely inferior to its European equivalents (German guns and Russian planes, in particular).
  • Calling someone in the Balkans a "Turk" can be a serious insult (this is because the Ottoman Empire conquered most of the Balkans in its heyday).
    • Bulgarians tend to get really irritated, since they tend to get mistaken for either one of their more popular neighboring people (Turks, Greeks, Serbians, Romanians and even Macedonians) or for Russians.
    • Similarly, calling an actual Turk an Arab (due to their relative close appearance) is also insulting.
  • Don't mix up Sweden and Switzerland.
    • Also, don't mistake Austria for Australia.
    • Or Slovenia for Slovakia. Especially confusing since the word for Slovakia in the Slovak language (Slovensko) sounds closer to "Slovenia" than their word for Slovenia (Slovinsko) does. Slovenians have it slightly easier — Slovenija for Slovenia, Slovaška for Slovakia.
      • It doesn't help that both come from the same root (the same one as the word "Slav", i.e. "speaking").
    • Or confuse the demonym of Denmark (Danes) with The Netherlands (Dutch).
  • Any mention of Gibraltar is 100% guaranteed to spark a flame war between Britons and Spaniards.
  • A form of Misplaced Nationalism is frequently directed towards Europe from American conservatives, who accuse the US left of turning America into "a European country", which either means "a bit more liberal", "country with a public healthcare system" or "socialist nightmare" depending on how extreme/pissed off the speaker is. This generally infuriates Europeans, who don't appreciate being held up as a negative option and who think their own political consensuses are just fine thank you very much (the British are especially prickly with regard to the National Health Service, especially after the "Stephen Hawking wouldn't be alive if he was British" fiasco). Ann Coulter in particular severely annoyed European commentators when she said Barack Obama would turn America into "some pathetic little Western European country, only without... America to save us". Ignoring the massive internet and historical debates over whether America ever actually has "saved" Europe (and vice-versa, cough Lafayette cough), most European audiences thought that statement crossed the line from ignorance to outright xenophobia. Similarly, Europe is usually held up as a negative option in such circles — the idea that the United States ever has anything to learn from Europe ever is outright blasphemy, as opposed to the European political spectrum, where left-wingers admire the US first amendment (among other things and Brits on the left admire the U.S just for having a written constitution in the first place) and right-wingers admire the USA's welfare state (or rather, lack thereof).
  • For a new variant, Europeans, again especially Britons, hate it when liberal Americans mock their "expansionary" austerity and the Eurozone, both of which Americans view to be a failed experiment because of all the crushing economic hardship they've caused. Criticism of the Eurozone is particularly unfair, as unlike austerity (which many if not most academic economists predicted would be a trainwreck),note  the Eurozone (1) was a venture known ahead of time to have great but manageable risks and (2) had and retains great benefits to trade, to say nothing of its psychological benefit as a symbol of a Europe that has transcended historical divisions and embraced peace, freedom, and democracy forever.
    • These people often get in conflict with Americans who hate America and refer to Europe (especially the Scandinavian countries) as if it is a socialist utopia. In both cases, Europe's supposed "socialism" will be heavily exaggerated.
      • That said, in most countries in Europe 'socialist' is an emotionally neutral description of political views (most meaning 'except some in the former Warsaw pact and former Soviet Union', where it tends to mean 'wants the USSR back'), rather than an insult meaning 'not sufficiently American' or short hand for 'The United Federation of Planets, but on Earth'. Europe as a whole is undeniably more socialist than the United States, but not to the extent some internet discussions would have you believe. In fact, Latin America is a whole is much more socialist than Europe if you used the European definition, as it filled to the brim with workers organizations that directly intervene with the belongings of rich people for the sake of the common man (A good instance of this would be the Brazilian MST that frequently takes unused land and demands that it is owned by farmers who have yet not had any land even if that land is owned by other people. That is practically unheard of in all European countries). In fact, many right-wing Americans were surprised to learn that some European countries like Sweden and Germany have supported some non-socialist policies like providing vouchers for religious private schools (an idea supported by the Republican Party)
  • The fastest way to make Finns hate your guts is to claim that Winter War was justified on the USSR's part.
    • More common way to achieve the same is by claiming that Continuation War was purely unprovoked aggression from their part, and that Finns were Nazis for fighting alongside the Wehrmacht (Any Finn will immediately tell you that Finland was fighting a war entirely separate from Operation Barbarossa, only allying with the Nazis because they had no other choice), that Finland's fears of renewed Soviet assault were unreasonable, or anything that isn't "Direct and immediate continuation to Winter War that might have gone a little overboard in grabbing land."
  • Similarly, making any kinds of excuses for Soviet occupation of Baltic states in front of Estonian, Latvian or Lithuanian.

     Towards Asian Countries 
  • Arguments involving China/Korea, Japan and World War II rarely end well.
    • This is also true for some Australians, Japan being the only nation to ever attempt invasion of Australia (well, except for Britain), seizing several Australian territories (most prominently New Guinea) and bombing Australia repeatedly, as well as their treatment of Australian POW's.
  • The Korean Macross Missile Massacre weapon the Hwacha had received backlash in many places, ranging from claims that it is ineffective (debunked by the MythBusters) to claims that the Chinese really came up with the multiple rocket launcher system first.
  • Speaking of weapons, it's not uncommon for people on 4chan and in Historical European Martial Arts to apparently be on a raging crusade to turn Katanas Are Just Better into not just a Discredited Trope, but a flat out Dead Horse Trope. According to these folks, a katana is pretty much the sorriest example of a sword that ever existed, made from simple iron of absolutely horrible quality (partially true, but the steel that was wrested from that iron was perfectly functional) and completely worthless outside of its own element—which is sometimes misrepresented as being purely a ceremonial weapon or dueling weapon throughout its entire history—certainly no match for the longsword of a proper fechtmeister. At the end of the day, it's probably easiest to just say it's the most chronologically modern of swords built to be used, but that it's hard to compare the metallurgical development of an isolationist island with the rest of the world.
  • Filipinos. The merest hint of offense and Filipino netizens will often rise up in arms en masse in defense of "Pinoy Pride". Goes double for the territorial disputes with China. Heck, the Philippines itself is riddled with Misplaced Regionalism, with denizens of different provinces all proclaiming their province/region is the best.
    • Practically insulting them or their country is enough to get you dishonored and banned from their country for life. Just ask Devina Dediva. Reminding them that their country is third world and filled with corrupt politicians is also borderline suicidal.
    • Then there's also the fact that Filipinos get too overjoyed whether someone with Filipino blood gets international fame and attention. Even though, tragically, almost all of them just so happened to have a relative in the Philippines, and not particularly knowledgeable about Filipino culture itself. An example of this can be seen in the singer Jessica Sanchez. Sanchez is an American singer who lived her whole life in the US. When words spread out that her mother was Filipino, the whole country got into a frenzy with her; showering her with blessings and even interviewing her "supposedly" relatives in the Philippines. However, the truth is, is that Sanchez lived and breathed in America, and even admitted that she had no clue or care about Filipino culture and history. Still, Filipinos tend to love her because she happened to have a Filipino relative.
    • The concept of "Pinoy Pride" can be seen either as means to uplift the Filipinos during this apathetic and dismal times or this trope. The statements like "Proud to be Pinoy" or "Filipinos are World-class" can been seen as a form of Cultural Posturing though the latter statement is perpetuated by the media. However whenever a Filipino or someone with Filipino blood does something successful internationally, it's usually those who are in the entertainment industry (e.g. Lea Salonga, Jake Zyrus, Olivia Rodrigo) or winning in the sports sector (e.g. Manny Pacquaio). Though the Filipino media does report Filipinos or half-Filipinos who are successful in other international sectors, such as medicine, business, politics or science and it's only mentioned once or twice while entertainment is usually featured several times. As for sports, they'll only reported more if the person won. Seriously, how many Filipinos would rather like or tweet the news of Filipinos or half-Filipinos entering international singing competitions like American Idol or X Factor than a Filipino-American who is Obama's personal chef in the White House?
      • Generally speaking, the Philippine media is very guilty of pushing the "Pinoy Pride" and indirectly making it into this trope. Worst offenders include entertainment journalists Rueben and Janet Nepales and Ricky Lo. Just read any of their interview of any Hollywood actor where there would at least one or two questions of visiting the Philippines or what Filipino food they like etc. or any mention that they have a Filipino acquaintance or that they knew Lea Salonga or Manny Pacquaio etc.
    • Thanks to the ongoing territorial disputes with China, Filipino netizens become more hypocritical to Filipinos with Chinese blood. For example, when a summa cum laude Biology graduate from the University of the Philippines became the first to earn the highest General Weighted Average since 1927, some people throw racist comments at her ethnicity (she's Filipino-Chinese) and declared that she's not a true Filipino. Somehow, they forgot that the Chinese had been around the country before the Spaniards arrived.
    • Criticizing President Rodrigo Duterte, particularly on his war on drugs, would earn you a truckload of hate from his diehard supporters. Whether you're a journalist regardless if you're local or international, a diplomat or a human rights' group, supporters would condemn you to hell. If you're a Filipino too who disagrees with Duterte, they would accuse you of supporting the former presidents Corazon Aquino and her son, Benigno "Noynoy" Aquino III, calling you a "Dilawan"(after the color "Yellow", the political color of the Aquino administration and the Philippines' Liberal Party, widely considered as pro-Aquino), regardless of affiliation and forced you to accept their beliefs or else, you're their enemy.
  • Pretty much anything about China will start a Flame War these days considering the rapid growth of China's economic and political power. Arguments over Human Rights, arguments over Tibet, arguments over their usage of communism, arguments over their usage of capitalism, outsourcing, etc.
  • Pakistanis and Indians. Especially about Kashmir, which is pretty much Israel-Palestine, but with nukes involved on both sides. Case in point: this episode of Michael Moore's ''The Awful Truth'' (skip to the second half). Hate wars tend to start on news sites even when the article in question is about the two countries co-operating. Can get ugly.
    • Speaking of Pakistanis, saying that the country is run by terrorists or overrun with terrorists will get you an angry lecture about how only a small number support terror. Also, expect plenty of ire if you call a Pakistani Arab or imply that they should know Arabic.
  • Malaysians and Indonesians at occasion. The Pendet dance and Suzuki AFC cup "laser beam" controversies are some examples, with the latter managed to get on the top of trends in Twitter for a few days.
    • Also related to Indonesians, it might not be best to mention Australia. From the Balibo journalist massacre to anthrax being sent to embassies to the brutal treatment of foreign criminals and demands to hand them back to the country of origin to flooding Australia with refugees (Indonesia's people smugglers being among the worst and most brutal, often ordering $10,000 a head and then killing them all and dumping them in mass graves, or disposing of all identification to further burden Australia before sinking the boat on Australian shores forcing the Navy to either let them drown or rescue them) throwing donated aide money in the donating country's face and rallying the call for racism to the issue of trade and live exports, it gets ugly. Predictions of a brutal war between the two being taught in education ugly.
  • Malaysians and Singaporeans. In Malaysia, this comes with a racial twist as well. While Malaysian Chinese generally admire Singapore's achievements (although that doesn't stop them from making jokes at the Singaporean's expense), Malaysian Malays... not so. Regarding food, however, most Malaysians regardless of race agree that Malaysian cuisine is superior. On the other hand, Singaporeans tend to regard just about everything in Malaysia as inferior (except maybe for cheap goods and food, that is).
    • If you're Malaysian and you speak English to any Malay, you will be accused of being anti-patriotic, which mostly happen to Chinese and Indians. Moreover, majority of the Malays hates English language if you don't know that.
  • Do not bring up the issue of Tibet in a room full of Indians and Chinese. To say that they have very differing viewpoints on the subject Tibet's possible independence would be a massive understatement.
  • "Remember Pearl Harbor" seems to be the standard comment towards anything related to Japan: Japan's rising economy? Pearl Harbor. Major earthquake in Tohoku? Pearl Harbor. Obama's handshake with Emperor Akihito? Pearl Harbor. Pokemon's sudden popularity? Pearl Harbor. Japan winning a soccer match against the United States? Pearl Harbor.
    • Reached an extreme after the Japanese tsunami and nuclear disaster in March 2011 (where over 15,000 people died). Some people said that it was karma for Pearl Harbor. Apparently these people forgot that World War 2 (which the Japanese lost thoroughly, by the way) was over sixty years ago.
      • Or that Japan had other major earthquakes in-between meaning that "their karma" points have already been used up or something.
      • Plus is changing the course of human history forever by making them the first target for a nuclear bomb not enough "karma"?!!
    • Happened again a few months later, after the U.S. soccer team lost to Japan in the 2011 World Cup, as noted by sites like Japan Probe.
    • After the U.S. soccer team beat Japan's during the 2012 Olymics, there was yet another rash of anti-Japanese comments on Twitter and Facebook. It also sparked a backlash of hatred and stereotyping of Americans in response, despite the fact that not all of the people making such ugly remarks were American.
    • As a double whammy, bringing up Pearl Harbor as an indescribably unjust national tragedy will inevitably spark the ire of the UK, who sees it as America making a disproportionately huge deal out of the kinds of bombings that were by that point happening to them daily.
      • Which will, in turn, attract the French and Russians.
      • And don't even get us started on the countries Japan actually did conquer!
  • Speaking of Japan, don't bother explaining why the morality around the atom bomb dropping as being more complex than it sounds. It will be ignored.
  • Discussing the Vietnam War as an American failure will not be pretty. It will turn into endless bitching about which side was winning despite the official end result.
  • Chinese animation vs anime vs western animation. Usually start with "trope X is used! This work is copying others!" or "this style is copying!" and end (or not end) with World War II, Second Sino-Japanese War, Cold War, racism discussion thrown across the table. If only there was a Chinese/Japanese version of This Very Wiki... You still got to wonder what will happen if you mention The King Of Pigs (a highly regarded South Korean animated film) to these people.
  • Whenever North Korea is being discussed on the Internet, expect to see two separate groups turn up: (a) the jingoists who think the U.S. should "nuke those gook bastards" and seem only vaguely aware that North Korea is not China, and (b) the die-hard Marxists who insist North Korea is a workers' paradise and dismiss all evidence to the contrary as "American propaganda". Of course, this all takes place without the involvement of anyone who's actually from North Korea because... well, you know...
    • Although South Korea is not of faults as South Koreans often harbor far right nationalist thoughts that mimic WWII era Japanese ultra-nationalism. And it does not help that there is a huge ideological divide among South Koreans in a country that has a lack of freedom of press in a country with free elections.
  • Many Hong Kongers, Taiwanese and (to a lesser extent) Macanese really hate being lumped in with Mainland Chinese. There are numerous different ways this can apply. Adding a layer of complexity is in English, it is common to use "Chinese" as a broad adjective, while in Chinese languages, whether you mean it ethnically, culturally, linguistically, politically, etc. are often differentiated with different terms.
    • Almost all Hongkongers who are ethnically Chinese would (perhaps grudgingly) admit they are ethnically Chinese, but they are some people who want to consider "Hongkonger" as a separate ethnicity, or identify as "Cantonese" as an ethnicity.
    • Most, but far from all, would admit they culturally Chinese, but emphasise their cultural differences — preservation of the old, "true" Chinese culture untainted by the Cultural Revolution. This kind of perspective is often encouraged by anti-Communism. On the other hand there are some who prefer a more modern, progressive form of Chinese culture and deride those in China as regressive and backwards. Some other Hongkongers think they should have an completely unique "Hong Kong" cultural identity with both Chinese, British and more influences, with a few more extreme opinions going further still to denounce almost any Chinese cultural ties, regarding them as either as rotten and medieval, futuristically dystopian or a nauseating combination thereof, and tout a wholly Japanese or European cultural identity. Across the spectrum, it is common to regard the Mainlanders as arrogant, uncouth and uncultured upstarts who would understand neither culture nor modernity if it hit them in the face.
      • In another perspective, the destruction of Chinese culture within China occured much earlier than the Cultural Revolution and it started right after the collapse of the Qing dynasty. One of the people who facilitated the idea of destroying Chinese culture was Lu Xun (1881 – 1936).
    • Linguistically, whether Chinese "varieties" are to be called languages or dialects will be forever be flamed over forever (note that Cantonese and Mandarin are more different than English and Dutch, while Taiwanese and Mainland Mandarin is about as different as British and American English...but this statement will also likely be controversial; divisions within Cantonese — which is often used to refer to Yue Chinese as a whole, but technically Cantonese is just the biggest branch — which are also often mutually unintelligible, is yet another argument). Also, a good way to spark a debate in Chinese forums is to ask whether Simplified or Traditional Chinese is the better writing method of the two.
    • The political divide is, unsurprisingly, one of the most contentious splits. Most, but not all, Hongkongers will balk at being called "Chinese" in the "citizens of China" sense — most Hongkongers have a HKSAR passport and HK citizenship, but not a PRC passport (and by extension, Chinese citizenship). A good quarter of the population from surveys straight up supports full independence from China, and progressively fewer people identify as being part of China even as HK spends more years being part of China. One side would condemn the other for being "American imperial fascist separatist dogs" and get yelled "Communist totalitarian expansionist usurper dogs" in return, or some combination thereof. For a western audience familiar with "The Troubles", Hong Kong also had a brief period in the 60s of bloodshed and guerrilla violence when it is said that "the streets are littered with pineapples (slang for improvised explosive devices)" between communist insurgences and British forces. A few years prior the British considered nuclear retaliation if China tries to take over Hong Kong. The riots from that time is still a very touchy subject. And don't even start on the reunification vs independence issue in Taiwan...
    • Economics is also entwined with politics. Some people from China consider Hongkongers as selfish, ungrateful, trouble-making colonial mongrels, and some Hongkongers maintain the success of China stemmed from HK having been its doorway to the globe and find the Chinese to be faceless, creatively sterile cogs with no taste or sense of individuality. Some mainlander Chinese think HK should be grateful for all the money they spend in HK, but many more Hongkongers hate them supposedly for taking up extremely limited living space, key goods like hospital beds or milk powder (and mocking the Chinese for the utter nationalism, but whenever China has yet another safety scandal, they raid HK and empty it of all of its "quality" products) and generally treating HK like a grab bag of 'free' goodies at the expense of the locals living there, as well as their inability and unwillingness to abide by local customs and laws, which causes locals great inconvenience in their daily lives. In addition, anchor babies are also a very contentious point, as many Hongkongers view them as 'locusts', unfairly taking up school spots that are already stretched quite thin (it's normal for tens, if not hundreds of students to compete for a few spots in a prestigious school), as well as using public resources and services paid for by taxes note , without 'giving back' to society as it were. In response, mainland Chinese accuse Hongkongers of promoting their own version of nationalism which not only looks down upon mainlanders, but also South and South East Asians who routinely suffer from racial discrimination, and that many of the problems they complain about is systemic and caused by capitalist inequality, so blaming them for "stealing" spots is no different from White Americans complaining about Hispanic migrants for their own life's problems. There is also the argument whether Hong Kong is getting a fair deal for what it pays for water (especially when compared to Singapore, which gets it much cheaper from Malaysia, which also became latter's argument, citing HK's high prices as reason they should charge more).
  • Lolicon and Shotacon, in some places where Japanese culture gets talked about often (such as US anime forums) it is treated as a playful subject in most contexts, being rather seen as weird rather than anything else on both sides of the pacific, but it can turn really ugly once the more explicitly pornographic content comes up. Most Americans that harp on Japan's porn industry are very concerned about the blatant ephebo/hebe/pedophiliac tendencies (all three of which are viewed as equally detestable). Meanwhile the Japanese, which find it equally detestable, do not like it at all to be viewed as pedophiles because of media like these and have heavy objections to those claims, not in the least due to Japan having an obscenity code that prevents genitals from being displayed. It definitely does not help that Japan has a very active pornographic doujin market, even if Japan made a ban on child pornography (which it does as of 2014) it would not stop the tendency of Japanese fanworks to depict sexual acts on children.

     Towards Oceanic Countries 
  • The Aussies vs Kiwis rivalry is mostly a joke. Both countries are in on it. Nobody else seems to be. Genuine examples do tend to emerge when sport is involved (most infamously the "underarm incident").
  • Who Invented Pavlova? (For the uninitiated, Pavlova is a cake-shaped meringue-like dessert topped with whipped cream and fruit popular in both Australia and New Zealand and named after a Russian ballet dancer who did some antipodean tours in the 1920s; it's popular as a holiday treat, associated with the summertime.note ) Don't go there. Just... don't.
  • While they don't get much backlash compared to the Americans, debate on Football Codes tend to be pretty serious here as well. In Australia, the major sporting divide is between two codes of football: Australian Rules (played mostly in Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia and West Australia) and Rugby (played mostly in New South Wales and Queensland). The argument between fans long predates the internet and fans of those sports from outside the country has joined into the mix. The flamewars have gotten worse, as the national leagues for each code are attempting to move in on the other code's territory. Making things even more worse , soccer has gained a foothold in Australia and has joined in the debate, which has not went well with fans of the other two codes and has started a bit of a back draft with Australians not embracing it in the international scene.
  • Much like the Brazilian, Canadian and American examples above, the different states of Australia also have their own little contentions with one another:
    • New South Wales vs. Victoria, good God. It's easily the biggest rivalry of them all, stemming from competition during the colonial era and the fact that the two states are the nation's most populous. New South Wales vs. Queensland is also a major one, for many of the reasons as the rivalry with Victoria, though not exactly at the same level.
      • Internally, New South Wales is also fairly divided. You have the divide between Sydney, Wollongong and Newcastle (the three largest cities), you have secessionists from New England who want to achieve statehood, you have the divide between the aforementioned three cities and the rest of the state (including both rural areas and cities such as Tamsworth or Albury), and then you have Broken Hill, which considers itself part of the state of South Australia instead. Sydney itself is divided into different areas: Sutherland is full of obnoxious, racist surfers, the Fairfield-Liverpool area is a lawless wasteland, Campbelltown is full of drug addicts (same stereotypes apply for Penrith), the North Shore (Manly, etc.) is full of rich snobs, Chatswood is just an awful place in general, and the Northern Hills are full of cashed-up bogans.
      • Queensland doesn't fare that much better. North Queensland (or 'Capricornia') has just been itching to secede from the rest of the state, and even within north Queensland you have Townsville vs. Cairns. To the south, you have Brisbane vs. Gold Coast, with both occasionally teaming up to mock Ipswich and Toowoomba. Then there's Mount Isa, who complain about being ignored by the rest of the state.
      • In Victoria, you have Melbourne vs. Geelong, Ballarat vs. Bendigo, and even within Melbourne you have divides over suburbs (Carlton vs. Collingwood being the greatest one). The biggest divide in Melbourne is which side of the Yarra River you live on, which tends to incorporate Slobs Versus Snobs (the slobs on the north/west side, the snobs on the south/east side).
    • South Australia vs. Victoria, though this is fairly one-sided. Whenever something does come up, it's the border issue. Some South Australians argue that Victoria has taken too much land and that the border should be at 141E, while some Victorians argue that they haven't gone far enough and that the border should be fixed at the western end of the Murray River. Many South Aussies will also never forgive Victoria for swiping the Australian Grand Prix away from them.
    • Western Australia vs. everyone else. Western Australia, even before Federation, has been clamouring to become its own nation (they've tried it twice before, and have failed both times). The eastern states in turn see Western Australians as spoiled moochers who would become a failed state if they actually go through with it. Not helping is Western Australia's flip-flopping attitude: they're vocal about separation during times of prosperity, but when the going gets tough, talks of separation die down quite significantly.

     Towards Middle Eastern and North African Countries 
  • Kurdish groups are very proud and independent, with a strong desire for a Kurdistan. Unfortunately the land they want to build it on is currently part of Iraq, Syria, Turkey and Iran so they clash with Turks over independence and autonomy a lot. Iraqi Arabs are a bit less opposed to the concept of Kurdish independence than the Turks, but they still don't get along with the Iraqi Kurds, as where the border is drawn will determine who gets a lot of oil wealth. Syria and Turkey nearly went to war once over Syrian support for the Kurdish militant group called the P.K.K. (and now the P.K.K. has done a deal with the Turks and is opposing the government in Syria's civil war...). Suffice it to say that any mention of the word "Kurd" online or anywhere else is fairly likely to cause an argument; stand particularly far away when an Arab and a Kurd argue about whether only Saladin's Kurdish ethnicity should "count" (since he was undisputedly ethnically Kurdish and considered himself primarily Kurdish) or if he can be considered an honorary Arab, as well (having spent most of his life in Arabic-speaking circles and ruled primarily Arabic-speaking lands).note 
    • On top of that, Assyrians/Chaldeans/Syriacs and some Armenians also claim the land Kurds live on.
  • Palestinians (or Arabs)/Pro-Palestinian Westerners and Israelis/Pro-Israel Westerners are, contrary to popular belief, not akin to water and oil. They are the matter and antimatter of animosity.
    • Clashing mentalities there include the fact that the West Bank is, according to The Bible and archaeological evidence, part of the Jewish homeland, and the accompanying belief that Jews thus have a right to settle there; the Muslim belief that losing territory claimed by Islam is something that must be corrected; the Jewish fear that without a stronghold and stubborn nature, people are going to wipe them out again; the knowledge of the surrounding countries that, with such a strong army, acting like a terrified oppressed people makes no sense; the question of whether the West Bank was Palestinian or Transjordanian (same with Gaza and Egypt); the belief of the Israelis that the fact that they've lived there for generations now gives them a claim on the land; the belief of the Palestinians that the fact that they've lived there for even more generations gives them a stronger claim on the land; the belief of the Middle Eastern Jews that nobody on either side seems to care that they never left... Each side has such a different way of viewing the conflict that it becomes nearly impossible to fully comprehend the other, much less have a reasonable discussion. It's essentially the Hatfields and McCoys on a geopolitical scale.
    • Of course, there are plenty of Pro-Israel or Pro-Palestinian Westerners who don't even know anything about the subject. There are pro-Israel people in the US who think that all Palestinians are Islamist terrorist radicals, and there are pro-Palestinian people throughout much of the world who argue that a total boycott and divestment campaign would be a good thing for the world (even though Israel has created major developments in many different fields — total divestment would mean eliminating the Internet and not eating any food grown in California—to say nothing of the fact that divestment would, by making Israelis feel more isolated, embolden the far-right groups who are in favor of annexing the territories and "solving" the problem by kicking the Palestinians out entirely and/or handing over the Palestinian lands the settlers don't want/can't use to Egypt and Jordan).
    • And the whole thing gets even uglier by the fact that the divide on that issue divides almost every political movement. Israel was founded in no small part by socialists and still has many kibbutzim, yet many Western Leftists have sympathy for the Palestinians (while others don't). Many religious Conservatives view Israel as some sort of "part of God's plan" (especially in the US), yet others resent it for not being Christian and the isolationist crowd resents the amount of aid it gets (despite pretty much all the military aid money going back to US arms companies). It's fair to say that a group of politically minded people that discusses Israel — even if they agree on every single other subject — will descend into bickering and mutual accusations of being horrible people and traitors to their political cause in no time.
    • In fact, a not so small number of people are just fed up with the whole debate and want both sides to just shut the hell up, and argue that the whole issue is getting way too much attention (which of course is likely to draw unfavorable answers from both sides).
  • Armenians and Turks. Very dangerous mix. Both sides accuse each other of genocide and genocide denial.
    • Also Greeks and Turks, and Bulgarians and Turks, and Russians and Turks, and Georgians and Turks, and Iranians and Turks, and...let's just say that of Turkey's neighbors, the only ones who seem to really like the Turks are the Azeris (which makes sense, given that they're the Shiite Turks who happened to live in the various Iranian empires rather than the Sunnis living in the Ottoman one; Azeri is still mutually intelligible with Turkish). In fairness, the Arabs have been warming up to them of late (on account of skillful Turkish diplomacy and the hottest soap operas the Arab world has yet seen).
    • Interestingly, sometimes Kurds and Armenians form an Enemy Mine against Turks, but it's kind of a love-hate relationship.note 
  • Israel and another neighbor they're frequently at odds with, Lebanon, can get pretty heated as well. Says something that a Lebanese group managed to get Wonder Woman (2017) banned from the country because the film's star is an Israeli.
  • Armenians and Azeris are just as bad of a mix, if not even worse. Though, like the above, genocide accusations are sometimes flung back and forth (but not quite as commonly), the main cause of contention is the disputed territory of Nagorno-Karabakh. Over two decades of a ceasefire have provided a long time for the animosity to build. They're even banned to play official association football (yes, yes, you call it "soccer") matches against each other — for fear of inflaming the conflict.
    • Armenians and Georgians are frenemies at best, despite both being Christian countries that have more similarities than differences, and can often be seen in flame wars on the internet. This is mostly due to Russia complicating things (Georgia and Russia are bitter enemies, while Armenia is Russia's ally), as well as some territorial squabbles the countries have had in the past. Yes, pretty much everyone in the Caucasus region hates each other.
  • If you don't want to start a Flame War, do not mention Iraq. Hell, the entire Middle East is a flame war hotbed. And it's not restricted to the internet. It can and often does start real wars too.
  • Well, Persians (i.e. Iranians of a certain ethnicity) will not take well to being called Arabs. Or Turks. Or Jews. Or any other thing than Persians, really. A real "us against them" mentality towards pretty much everyone in the world. Except the French. They're cool... See Omid Djalili for hilarious explanation of the phenomenon.
    • Special honors go to Britain and Russia, who switched off between trying to split the country between them and fighting the whole thing at least since the Ottomans let the area go.
    • Armenians also seem to get a free pass, though.
      • And Persian Jews, at least outside of Iran, are very proud of their heritage.
  • Algerians and Moroccans have an odd one going. Algerians understandably have a beef with Morocco, given the 1964 attempt by Morocco to take land along their border just as Algeria won its independence; Morocco, in turn, wanted that land for the entirely legitimate reason that the land had been taken from Morocco and given to Algeria by the French—and Algeria, conveniently enough, was part of France at the time. This whole conflict has in turn created a decades-long animosity that Algerians tend to take a good bit more seriously than Moroccans, but which nevertheless runs strong, particularly when it comes to football. Why they don't both gang up and hate on the French (a lot of Algerians, surprisingly, don't, despite 130 years of frequently-brutal French colonial rule and a war of independence that cost about a million Algerian lives), who started the whole mess, is beyond most people's comprehension.
    • Apparently, if you are a foreigner visiting either country and you don't speak Arabic, the first foreign language to try is French. The French were of course a colonial power, but now that they're gone, the educated language seems to be French. That's not an isolated incident. Lebanese and even Syrians have in many cases had French as their first foreign language, and for that matter, English is the language of choice in a great many former British colonies, mostly because now it is seen as neutral. Colonialist today, educational standard tomorrow.
    • Note that it comes out not only when the teams are playing each other, but when they aren't: when Algeria and Egypt had a flap over qualification for the 2010 World Cup, a lot of Moroccans rallied to the Egyptian side, and joined Egypt in celebrating when Algeria (after qualifying) was humiliated in the group stage, losing two of their three games (with the non-loss game being a scoreless draw), as well as failing to score a single goal.
  • And of course, there is the most ridiculous and persistent bit of Cultural Posturing the world has ever seen: the Great Eastern Mediterranean Food Fight. Advice to anyone who wishes to keep their head:
    1. Do not, under any circumstances, call Turkish coffee "Turkish coffee" unless it is written that way on the menu. If there is no menu, play it safe and call it "Greek coffee" in a Greek restaurant, "Arabic coffee" in an Arabic one,note  "Armenian coffee" in an Armenian one note , "Bosnian coffee" in a Bosnian one, "Cypriot coffee" in Cyprusnote , and "Turkish coffee" if and only if you are actually in a Turkish restaurant/cafe.note 
      • Or an Israeli one. Though not an Armenian restaurant in Israel.
      • Be careful with Armenian/Turkish/etc. pizza as well. If you feel confident enough to use the term 'lahmajoon' you might be safe (actually an Arabic word meaning "meat dough," but used by most countries formerly part of the Ottoman Empire).
    2. Do not, under any circumstances, ask who invented baklava around two persons of differing Eastern Mediterranean heritage. There will be blood.
      • Same goes for sweet mint tea and the syrup-soaked balls of fried dough the Greeks call loukoumades. The only thing that will get people more riled up would be saying, "why, these are just like Indian gulab jamun!"
      • Also, do not get between an Egyptian and a Lebanese or Syrian when arguing over who makes better desserts (irrespective of who invented them); the Egyptians prefer smaller pastries with such intensive use of clarified butter that the things practically fry in the oven; Lebanese and Syrians prefer to use less clarified butter (although the quantities are still insane) but also serve larger pieces and drench everything in sugar syrup and honey (which the Egyptians do to a much lesser extent). (Note: Other than falafel and dessert, Egyptians and Lebanese get along pretty well, as do Egyptians and Syrians on a people-to-people level).
    3. Do not, under any circumstances, suggest to an Egyptian that you prefer Lebanese/Syrian or (Heaven forbid) Israeli falafel. Your head will be bitten off, but not until the Egyptian has a chance to explain, in excruciating detail, why making falafel out of chickpeas rather than fava beans is an abomination and an offense before God.
      • Note: Hyperbolically, Arabs will claim that what is original in Israeli cuisine is not good, and what is good in Israeli cuisine is STOLEN! From the Arabs! Israelis, for their part, tend to roll their eyes at these claims (and the snarkier ones tend to point out the numerous dishes the Israeli kitchen "stole" from the European one—particularly schnitzel, of which the Arabs are equally guilty of "stealing", not that the Austrians are complaining about their "stolen" recipe) and are willing to concede that that they did in fact borrow most of their cuisine, and that some of their inventions (e.g. mud coffee) are at best an acquired taste. (On the other hand, suggesting that ptitimnote  and me'urav Yerushalminote  are in any way bad or non-Israeli is a guaranteed recipenote  for an argument.) Additionally, Israelis would likely dispute some of the more absurd Arab culinary claims, and most of the legitimate ones just for fun or in hope of getting away with it.
    4. Finally: Hummus. It's not a question of who invented it, but how to prepare it (or for many outside the Middle East, why?).

     Towards Multiple Countries in Multiple Continents / Other 
  • 4chan's /int/ (international) board examplifies this trope to the Extreme. Being an ImageBoard, not surprising. Krautchan's /int/ (where the concept came) is relatively calm and tame though.
  • Almost every single news article posted by any news site has the comments degrade to bitter nationalism flame wars, even if the article itself has nothing to do with the issues people argue over.
  • Any comment that starts with "You," "Typical," or the like when referring to nationalities or ethnic groups is more than enough to cause everyone else to rage.
  • In general, "Great Power" nations note  tend to draw much more political and social ire than regular first world countries and especially third world countries. This happens not just on the internet, but in Real Life and in media as well.
    • Added to this, people from Third World Nations (Or what most people perceive as such) can expect either being ignored completely ("Where is that country?", "Who cares about it?") or being mocked for living in a nation like that ("My country has better standards of living than yours, therefore I'm better than all the people in your country", "Your people are inferior", "Stay in your nation!", etc.).
  • If your country has an infamous Vocal Minority, snarky debaters in other countries will use the stereotypes from those Vocal Minorities to describe your entire country. Granted those that do this are only a Vocal Minority as well, but it often leaves a bad taste for a lot of people and it's often a good source of many of these Flame Wars.
  • Many will accuse other nations of showing unhealthy amounts of Patriotic Fervor, but if their own country does it, it is often ignored regardless if it is just as bad if not worse.
  • And similar to the above two, the No True Scotsman fallacy is often used during these debates, as if apparently the "stupid" and "evil" elements of human nature are only confined to and only originate from certain specific areas and/or groups of people. When one (or an entire group) hears about a person committing a crime or something wrong, the person will generally see it as "typical" of their nationality. However if another offender that is in the same nationality as their own commits a crime or does something wrong (especially if it's the exact same thing); rather than admit that they are wrong, the criminal is often seen as "atypical" of their nationality and will discredit them as "Not a true {Insert Nationality of their own here}."
  • A good example of this is often seen during the Olympic Games. Despite that the games are supposed to be about the best athletes, not the best countries, nationalism is regardless a very serious matter. Rooting for your countrymen can be subject to you being trolled on the internet, especially if you root for a high medal nation like the United States or China. The fact that "winning" the Olympic Games is only the matter of investment, doesn't help that case. The best athletes always comes from the country who spends the most on training them (and Kenya, which happens to have an incredibly innovative teacher the other countries are staring to catch up with). Of course, this is one of the many reasons why the medal tallies aren't considered official by the IOC.
  • Many forms of Values Dissonance will often generate Flame Wars between countries.
  • Don't get between communists and American/British conservatives on YouTube. It never ends well.
  • This happens in board gaming communities, of all places. Games from Europe tend to have a different feel from games from the U.S., and people's preference for one gaming style over the other can occasionally bleed into the unnecessarily vitriolic, and as commentary on the nations themselves.
  • There is a rather amusing trend on more laid back sites of having threads discussing politics or religion where even Christians and Satanists talk quite civilly, but every third post has some shell shocked Internet veteran saying "We have to lock this thread before it turns into a Flame War!" A thread like this is often seen as a rite of passage for newer Message Boards.
  • On some forums, topics can get derailed when insults an entire country and/or its military forces, even if the topic was never about nationalism in the first place.
  • Happens sometimes in Hetalia: Axis Powers fandom, unsurprisingly due to the nature of the series but especially ridiculous due to the nature of the series, because everyone sucks in a funny way.
  • Don't bring up the Second World War if people from countries that were once on opposing sides are on the forum.
    • The same goes for neutral countries, such as Sweden or Switzerland.
    • Ditto for the Allies, where it will devolve into a "whose country single-handedly won the war and saved everyone else's butts" pissing contest. In fact, it might be a good idea to avoid the topic entirely if you don't want to start World War III.
  • Any video of a nuclear bomb on YouTube, especially the ones dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, will have a huge flame war about the bombing of these cities going on in the comments. Expect to see the words "genocide" and "war crime" used. Also expect to see jaw-dropping epithets and hate language thrown all over the place.
    • On that same note, Pearl Harbor. Just switch the sides around, and you'll also get the same result.
    • You'll also get the glorious situation of Pearl Harbour being used to explicitly justify the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, which generally heralds the comments section being locked.
  • Poll: "What is the best tank in the world?" on military related boards. The results of the poll will tell you nothing about the tanks themselves but they will speak volumes of the national and political leanings of a board and its members. Just try to make jokes about whether Israeli tanks can move under all that armor (the IDF is famously fond of making its forces slow but invulnerable due to the small area most of its wars take place in) and see if people can start talking about specifics again.
  • YouTube is well known for the bloody nationalist Flame Wars that rage in the comments for many, many videos (whether they have anything to do with the countries in question or not).
    • Whose Line Is It Anyway? — UK version or US?
    • The OfficeUK version or US?
    • Let's face it, it's easier to list the Transatlantic Equivalents where there ISN'T a huge dispute over which version was better. For example, few Skins fans would dispute that the British version is the superior one, so it's more a battle over whether the American version was So Bad It's Horrible or So Okay, It's Average.
    • Top Gear is a major aversion. Almost everyone agrees the British version is best, with disagreement only over whether the American version sucks or is ok.
    • Anything's Spanish dub or Latin American dub?
    • Quebec French dub or France French dub?
    • Portuguese dub or Brazilian Portuguese dub?
    • There's always a Turkey vs. Greece smackdown going on in the comments section of an "Istanbul not Constantinople" music video.
    • Look up any Kingdom of Heaven video on Youtube and you'll find a strange mixture of patriotic fury and dodgy history.
    • There are massive Greek-versus-Macedonian comment battles that make watching Youtube documentaries about Alexander the Great very depressing.
      • Going with the Greek vs. Macedonia/Turkey Vs. Greece comments, you may typically find Serbians vs. Albanians, Croatians vs. Serbians, Hungarians vs. Romanians, ect, etc. Essentially, pit any two countries from the Balkans against one another and they will fight over things that happened thousands of years ago.
      • Although some things like the Treaty of Trianon are relatively much more recent and others like Kosovo are still current issues.
    • Just try to watch something that references 9/11. Just try.
    • If you speak Dutch (or have a good translator) check out the comments on the videos of Leve België (Long Live Belgium) of the popular Flemish group Clouseau. It's an anti-separatist song (for those who don't know, Belgium is "split" between Dutch speaking Flemish, French-speaking Walloons, German-speakers and the French-speaking inhabitants of Brussels) so proponents and opponents of Flemish independence duke it out.
    • The comments from videos of national anthems from any country or other patriotic songs. A big part of them consist of people from other countries bashing either the anthem, the country itself or its countrymen. Another big part are fellow countrymen attacking or defending their current government.
    • Any YouTube video of anything at all related to Ireland, whether it be a Republic Of Telly sketch, a video of the national anthem or a clip from a film, will eventually either turn into a nationalism debate, an IRA debate or conflict between Irish-Americans, Irish people who don't like them and Irish people who do.
  • Likewise, take any page on The Other Wiki dealing with any historical event, entity or person.
    • Or worse, the talk page for any article about an ancient tribe, nation, or ethnic group. Odds are it will contain a raging flamewar between the people who insist they are the sole descendents of that group (and hence are unique and special and downtrodden), and the people who think that ancient tribe was just an offshoot of their ancestors (and hence they can claim credit for everything they did and/or should own the land where that tribe lived). Expect to see lots of shouting, people taking (or giving) personal offence, and early 20th Century (or earlier) academics and out-dated notions of racial classification dragged in as "proof" of whatever point is trying to be made. Typical examples: were the Bulgars Turkic or Iranic, and are the Bulgarians mainly descended from them or from the Slavs?
  • This even extends to The Economist's website, of all places. Discussion relating to any article which mentions a country by name (to wit, all of them) will consist of three groups — one group genuinely discussing the article, one group maintaining that "Country X is bad!" and one group maintaining that "The Economist is spreading vile lies about Country X"... even if the article itself was entirely neutral in tone.
    • There's a slight variation on this if it's an article on relations between country X and Y in Europe. One groups discusses the article. One claims "Country X mistreats the wonderful country Y" another "Country Y mistreats the wonderful country X" then another "This is why country X/Y should agreed with us, country Z instead" instead.
    • Just... don't bring up human rights in any piece on China (If the article's actually about that topic, then don't worry, you're screwed no matter what). The result will be flames flying in every direction from everyone.
  • Mocked by the 4chan meme of calling Europe "the worst country in the world".
  • The Civilization board CivFanatics Forums' Off-Topic section has developed the following into a law of nature:
    Michal Gadwyn's Law: The longer a CFC-OT discussion goes on, the probability of a statement involving Poland and/or Eastern/Central Europe approaches 1.
    • It's gone on long enough that most people have stopped caring and started to parody the argument of whether Poland is in Eastern or Central Europe by saying it's in Western Europe, Northern Europe, Western Asia, Northern Africa, Canada, Northern Europe, South America, Mars, and/or Canada. Every once in a while, someone will try to make things devolve again by saying it's in The Pale... or beyond!
    • Another topic from the Civilization forums that stirs nationalism: discussion of which civilizations should be included as new DLC. Many want their country to be included the game, and there's a lot of arguing over which cultures deserve the title of "civilization." This exemplifies the "misplaced" half of this trope, because Civ games have always had active modding communities that create custom civilizations that have too small of demand to make it into the game.
  • Made in Country X tends to invoke this when it comes to works and products, stating that True Art is made only in a/some specific country/ies. This can invoke some Public Medium Ignorance, to say the least.
  • Japan has a tiny Vocal Minority of its Internet users known as "netouyo" (a portmanteau of "intaanetto" ("Internet") and "uyoku" ("right-wing")), which can basically be summed up as Anonymous with the mentality of Sarah Palin, but in Japanese. They have a reputation for descending on Japanese articles and videos and leaving a bunch of hypernationalistic and xenophobic comments, much to the chagrin of, well, basically everyone else in Japan who frequents the Internet.
  • Trolls have the ability to turn any tiny issue into this trope, especially if the issue has a lot of heavy debate and the forum has a lot of traffic from other countries. Say, there is a heavy debate on whether or not NASA is constitutional. Trolls from around the world will hastily remind them NASA/SpaceX does not have human spaceflight ability. Now the debate gains a racist taste.
    • God help you if you promote cooperation. Raise the ad hominem shield!
  • A wry inversion: Sh*t Latinos Never Say.
    "That's too spicy!"
    "I love the cold!"
    "I want to live in Arizona!"
  • A simple mention of the success Bluecoat systems is making worldwide is enough to let Arabs write hate speech about the US and how they are ruining everything. For the uninitiated, Bluecoat systems is the company dictators call when they want to have full control over what sites you are not allowed to watch, but is enjoying great success throughout the world despite their negative reputation by organizations such as Reporters without borders and is used widely in public places for censoring accurately. To be fair though, in more democratic governments some organizations are planning to run without it because of their negative image and homophobia. (In some versions they censor out all sites providing a place to talk about LGBT.)
  • Calling any non-Arab Muslim an Arab or implying that they should know Arabic will result in angry lectures. Predictably, the same goes for assuming that all Arabs are Muslim, though you're much less likely to meet a non-Muslim Arab (if you do, chances are he's Eastern Christian).
    • Although every practicing Muslim does know some Arabic, as that's the language of Muslim daily prayers. However, not even many Arabs can read classical Arabic Qur'an was originally written in.
  • On any list containing the words "worst" and "countries" tends to get a lot of this. A special note should be sent to South Korea, because back when Japan was at the top of this list a few people assumed that it was South Koreans spamming hate speech about Japan due to the at the time recent territorial disputes over a few islands.
  • Most cases of athletes or sports teams relocating can provoke flames online, but when it’s an athlete signing to a team from a different country in an international sport, this trope becomes involved and the vitriol goes up to eleven. If competing against their home nation’s own team is likely, expect endless cries of “Traitor!” and insinuations that the second country only hires foreigners because their own athletes are no good.
  • The Rail Fan community, for unknown reasons, seems clinically unable to separate their love of trains from their national identity. On the American side, there was a very vocal section of foamers that hated the design of the Siemens SC-44 Charger locomotives being implemented on various Amtrak routesnote , Maryland's MARC commuter rail service, and Brightline (soon Virgin Trains USA), Florida's high-speed rail network, for being "ugly" and "too European". It was escpially bad in Brightline's case, as the railroad uses a modified Charger locomotive that looks similar to those used on high-speed rail sets overseas, with one commenter outright saying "This is not how trains are supposed to look in the United States of America". On the European side, you can go to YouTube and search any video on Amtrak's Acela Express, the aforementioned Brightline, or any kind of fast train in America, and there's a good chance you'll see a European commenter, completely unprompted, boasting about how their high-speed rail is much better, derisively sneering at America's version of "high-speed".note 

"Pass the Popcorn!"