Archive for March, 2008

Does genocide lead to peace?

March 31, 2008

I read this passage in the Economist:

Brussels types fret that such squabbling undermines Europe’s boast to have moved beyond the grudges and resentments of ethnic nationalism. But here too the reality may be more complicated. An essay in the current issue of Foreign Affairs makes the incendiary suggestion that the EU has kept the peace for 60 years thanks to nationalism, not despite it. The author, Jerry Muller of the Catholic University of America, argues that the brutal genocides and forced population shifts of the 20th century helped to make peace possible. With a few exceptions (he cites Belgium as one), Europe’s ethnic and state boundaries now match (ie, most Germans live in Germany, Greece is dominated by Greeks and so on). That has removed a big reason for fighting. Thus the post-war peace may not mark a defeat for ethnic nationalism, but rather demonstrates its “success”. A more recent example of such success, just recognised by most EU countries, is Kosovo. Read the rest of this entry »

Weekly Genocide Roundup

March 30, 2008

As I sip morning coffee and enjoy the coming spring, I thought I’d share some up and coming articles that may be of interest!

Cal Hearing about Cambodian Genocide

The Cultural Genocide of Balochistan

Rwanda Mayor Fired for Spreading Genocide Ideology

Hillary Clinton and Genocide

Stolen Generations

John McCain urges collective action regarding future genocide

March 28, 2008

mccain.gifJohn McCain still feels strongly that a US withdrawal of troops in Iraq would result in genocide. This sentiment reverberates with the Bush administration’s public stance on the war: we must stay or things will get worse. At times, I feel this position is both unproven and under-researched, as I have stated in past blogs. It is, irregardless of its potential to occur, a point of relative concern.

What I really like recently is that John McCain, while advocating this position, is tempering it by an understanding that we need to work with other regional powers on a variety of fronts. The Washington Post’s article quoted him as saying that: “We need to listen — we need to listen — to the views and respect the collective will of our democratic allies,” McCain said. “When we believe international action is necessary, whether military, economic or diplomatic, we will try to persuade our friends that we are right. But we, in return, must be willing to be persuaded by them.” Read the rest of this entry »

Knesset on Armenian Genocide– a realistic viewpoint

March 28, 2008

An interesting and realistic response to the Knesset discussion of the Armenian genocide:

http://news.trendaz.com/index.shtml?show=news&newsid=1163325&lang=EN

Jews on Armenian Genocide

March 27, 2008

I feel, and I know this might come off a bit strongly but, that if anyone should recognize persecution its the Jews. They have been the brunt of persecution for eons and frequently have soldiered this burden while everyone else was denying its existence. This is why I find it confusing that the Jewish community has been so ambivalent towards the plight of Armenians in having their genocide recognized.

There are so many Jews against Darfur signs hanging around DC that I can’t walk a half mile without seeing one. Yet, they have been notably silent on Armenia– well not anymore. The Knesset, the Jewish parliament, decided today to appoint a committee to look into the Armenian genocide, reports Isreali news sources. The decision to review the Armenian case was put forward by Meretz-Yahad Chairman Chaim Oron and ratified by eleven members. Read the rest of this entry »

Thought Police in Rwanda??

March 25, 2008

Lawmakers in Rwanda passed a law to stop the spread of genocide ideology. As noted in the Kigali Times : The Bill is introduced months after damning revelations… showed cases in which school children demonstrated predisposition to the genocide ideology. The Senate had also found rampant genocide ideology in families, schools and some individuals which sparked the House to react immediately to stop the vice.

According to the law, punishment will be life imprisonment with no ability to commute the sentence. Lawmakers argued that the State needs to back this law fully in order to change the latent genocide ideology kept in the minds of the people. Read the rest of this entry »

Genocide in America- Video of McCain’s Preacher

March 24, 2008

This is ridiculous and almost unworthy of being on this site………

“Out of Darkness”- Genocide Through Dance

March 23, 2008

genocide-pic.jpgI was reading an article in the Boston Globe yesterday that discussed the interesection between genocide and art. The particular article focused on dance and in particular the work a Boston based dance troupe is doing to bring the concept of genocide and the Armenian genocide in particular to a wider audience. The dancers deal with the theme of genocide the same as they would any other, although they struggle to find the beauty in a topic of such ferosity and hate.

The best thing about their performance is that they stop mid-way to break the fourth wall. For those of you who don’t know, the fourth wall is that which seperates the stage and the audience. The breaking of this wall is a contemporary theatre technique which forces the audience to become part of the action on stage. In this dance, when the fourth wall is broken it is done so by dancers who ask the audience questions: when did you first experience a memory genocide? When did you first hear the word?

This is a great, interactive and traditional way of sharing with others a concept or dilemma. For many, art makes concepts like genocide easier to handle. There are a few programs in the developing world which use theatre, media art and dance, to encourage youth to discuss what happened to them and how they feel. By using this same technique in America we are encouraging our youth to speak about and learn about a topic rarely discussed in our classrooms.

Cheers to the Sayat Nova Dance Company for being both innovative and informative! They are truly making a difference in the our schools, in the public and with our youth.

Weekend Genocide Round Up

March 23, 2008

Here it is, the round up of weekend articles (and this week a film- lucky us!):

Witnesses to Rwanda Live in Fear of Genocide

Rwanda: Petition Launched to Halt Negationist Conference

Protesting Iraq

ICTR judges to visit Rwanda

Unrepetant (a documentary) [I haven’t seen this yet, but I hear it is good.]

McCain Preacher on Genocide- More Inflamatory Terms

March 22, 2008

Republican Presidential John McCain has been endorsed by Reverend Rod Parsley of the World Harvest Church of Columbus, Ohio. Much like Obama’s minister, Parsley has a series of ideas about the black race which are inflammatory at the least- irrational at best. Yet, his claims involve a serious and politically explosive belief that the government, through Planned Parenthood, is a waging a black genocide.

Sam Stein of the Huffington Post wrote “In speeches that have gone largely unnoticed, Parsley (who is white) compares Planned Parenthood, the reproductive care and family planning group, to the Klu Klux Klan and Nazis, and describes the American government as enablers of murder for supporting the organization.

“If I were call for the sterilization or the elimination of an entire segment of society, I’d be labeled a racist or a murderer, or at very best a Nazi,” says Parsley. “That every single year, millions of our tax dollars are funding a national organization built upon that very goal — their target: African Americans. That’s right, the death toll: nearly fifteen hundred African Americans a day. The shocking truth of black genocide.”

Okay, lets really ask ourselves the definition questions here:

1.) Is it a systematic attempt to kill an entire population? No, if it were it would require more than involvement than one branch of the government.

2.) Is the government policy one of outward hate? No, this is meant to be for black and white parents who are seeking help with planned/unplanned pregnancy.

Okay, since the two big policy questions are answered negatively, I’m going to go out on a limb here and claim two things. I’d like to argue that the minister has just found a lovely way to argue against Planned Parenthood without sounding like a racist and a prick. By being a white minister arguing for a black cause you think for a second about respecting him and his mission- more people out there helping others the better, right? Right, until you realize he is only helping himself and doing is in a twisted overly inflamatory way.

Dear John, you may want to move away from the crazies if you want international respect.