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Thursday, June 30, 2005

When do we demand an apology?

When do we demand an apology?

Here are a couple Nixon-Kissinger exchanges on November 5, 1971 after their meeting with Indira Gandhi in New York barely a month before India invaded East Pakistan and helped create Bangladesh:

  • Nixon to Kissinger: "We really slobbered over the old witch."

  • Kissinger to Nixon: "The Indians are bastards anyway, they are starting a war there."

  • Kissinger to Nixon: "While she was a bitch, we got what we wanted too. She will not be able to go home and say that the United States didn't give her a warm reception and therefore in despair she's got to go to war."

The US even encouraged China to "engage" India during the tensions between India and East Pakistan.

More here and here.

Update: Some stinging documents here that show US's support for the Pakistani genocide in Bangladesh. (Thanks Manish). Source documents here.

America's Duplicity - This time, target Iran

America's Duplicity - This time, target Iran

As much as I desist from writing about the war, the policies and adventures, rather mis-adventures, of the American administration keep upping the ante and it becomes impossible for me to resist venting my frustration - yet again.

Barely a few days after the former mayor of Teheran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, was elected President of Iran, the Americans are working their propoganda machinery, a la, Goebbels, to paint a horrible picture of him in particular and Iran in general.

First, Rummy, Cheney and Bush called the Iranian elections unfair. The Americans have just gone through 2 questionable elections and yet they think they (and UK) have the moral right to call the elections in Iran unfair. Of course, the elections in Iraq held under the American guns went as well as any election ever could!

Then, a few of the hostages "recognized" Ahmadinejad as one of the student leaders who held 52 Americans captive for 444 days during the revolution of 1979 that put Ayotallah Khomeini to power.

What is not much highlighted are these facts:

  • The US and UK intelligence forces were responsible for toppling Dr.Mohammed Mossadegh's popular elected Government in Iran and replacing him with Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi (Shah of Iran). They toppled him because he sought to nationalize the Iranian oil reserves.

  • The Shah led a ruthless persecution of his people through tortures and assasinations, all through supported by both US and UK.

  • The 1979 workers revolution resulted in the Shah fleeing to the US where the mass murderer and torturer was given sanctuary.

  • The Iranians then led protests, mostly outside the American embassy, demanding the Americans to deport the Shah back to Iran to face trials for his war crimes. Of course, the US refused.

  • The frustrated Iranians then planned and successfully took over the American embassy and held about 55 Americans captive for 444 days.

But none of those anti-democratic acts of the Americans ever come under a microscope. The only point thats highlighted in the media is that Ahmadinejad was a possible captor.

Even if he was, I don't see what the big deal is. Do they want him to stand trial? Or are they looking for an excuse to take out Iran as they did Iraq?

The Americans have invaded a nation violating all international laws. They have committed a terrorist act. And they are holding the elected President of a nation captive and thousands of civilians in prisons where they are subjected to rape and torture. That in a nutshell the enormity of American warcrimes, without even going into the thousands of innocent civilians killed so far and the hundreds more dying on a daily basis because of them.

And instead of addressing their war crimes, they are going back 25+ years to try and figure out if Ahmadinejad was a captor!

There is a clear emerging pattern here. First they paint a country as undemocratic. Once that message sinks in, they paint the leaders of the nation as not only anti-American but as people who have been at "war" with the US. That is usually sufficient to sucker the majority of the Americans into believing that the said country is uncivilized, backward, oppressive and brimming with terrorists. The next step would be to play the "nuclear weapons" card. And finally, the "serious national security" ace. Thats about all it takes to rally most of the Americans to feel "patriotic" and want to go in and take out the tyrannical government in a far-off land. Nobody even talks about the collateral damage and the so-called coalition's depleted uranium shells scattered across the Middle East countryside.

I hope America's duplicity comes under the spotlight soon enough and the rest of the world stands up at least this time against the Western war criminals.

Meanwhile, I may have to prepare for an orange suit for writing this piece!

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

The real cowards - Western media

The real cowards - Western media

Another of Robert Fisk's frustrating notes. Only yesterday I was talking to a friend of the Western media's cowardice to report as they must of the truth. But to them the runaway brides are bigger issues than innocent folks dying everyday in a far off land where democracy was finally unleashed by the righteous Westerners. Here is Fisk's article.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

A blog & writer of note: Ammani

A blog & writer of note: Ammani

Very few people have the ability to capture profound emotions and thoughts in the simplest of words. One such writer is UK-based Ammani. On her now very popular blog, she posts short stories (that she calls Quick Tales) - each no more than a few lines that reach deep into the reader and finds a pulse that resonates in harmony. The elegance and simplicity is mind-blowing. On the personal blogs I frequent, few have made as much impacts as River or Ammani. Here are some of my favorites from Ammani's blog: Irony, Namesake, Photo, Bio-Data, An Expense, Bargain and Secret.

One of her Quick Tales (QT 16 - Secret) was translated to Tamil by the famous writer Sujatha (dialogue-writer for most of Mani Ratnam's movies including Roja, Kannathil Mutham Ittal and Ayutha Ezhuthu) in his regular column in Anantha Vikatan. That in itself, speaks volumes about her writing prowess.

Ammani's QT16 - Translated by Sujatha in Anantha Vikatan in Section Enakku Piditha Kavidhai

Blog on Ammani! Not long before a publisher picks these up for a compilation.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Big Bully!

Big Bully!

Bolton, one of the scoundrels working behind the scenes implementing and promoting Bush's illegal wars, has been in the spotlight recently as he awaits the US Senate vote that could send him as USA's Ambassador to the UN. This man once said "If the UN Secretariat building lost 10 stories, it wouldn't make a bit of difference." And ironically, he is USA's choice to the UN! Well, all that is old news. He has always been infamous for being a bully. But today I came across this news article in the Guardian that takes him to a higher level. He was known to be a bully with co-workers and folks he interacted with in other departments. But according to this article, Bolton was instrumental in getting the head of Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) fired. This article also shows how the US unfairly flexes its muscles in international politics.

Related links:

  • An effort to stop Bolton from getting to the UN

  • A good biography - not one Bolton would want to read.

  • One more biography.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Best Indian Films of all time

Best Indian Films of all time

Time recently published its list of 100 best films ever and 5 Indian movies made the grade - Satyajit Ray's Apu Trilogy, Guru Dutt's Pyaasa and Mani Ratnam's Nayakan.

Rediff has now started a month-long series of top 10 Indian movies from the perspective of Indian film-makers and critics. And they started with Subhash Ghai. My first reaction to Mr.Ghai's list was that of frustration.

I thought this was a list of India's best films. But all I see on his list are Hindi movies. Is Mr. Ghai just ignorant of movies in other languages or does he hate to give credit where it is due?

It is a real shame that one of India's leading film-makers didn't think it worthy to mention even a single South Indian movie. Hum Apke Hai Kaun makes the list but not Roja or Bombay or Nayakan or Beladingala Baalae or Shankarabaranam or Kshana Kshanam or Pushpakavimanam or Kaazhcha (the list goes on)... I agree it is about individual tastes and perspectives - but on this one, I think it is more than just that!

Open your mind to good cinema from other regions too Mr.Ghai.

Unrelated link: Rahman's composition for Roja made it to the top 10 best soundtracks ever. Here is a nice write-up on him.

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