Category Archives: Fascism

A Down-to-Earth Review of E-War IV and Its Literature

Michael Roberts, courtesy of an original article in 29 October 2015 in Sinhalanet with the title “Down-to-Earth: The Hard Truths of Eelam War IV” … a work that I could not have written in 2009 because I had to transcend  my office-room background and it has taken time todevelop a sharper understanding of the situation. That said, I am still limtied by my ilack of battle theatre experience.

“Just as in Kosovo if enough civilians died in Sri Lanka the world would be forced to step in” – Pulidevan of LTTE to a pal in Europe (quoted in Harrison 2012: 63).

Guided by a series of studies that I have indulged in over the years 2010-15, let me summarize my findings in point form. The focus is on the period 2008-to-May 2009.  However, four facets of the broad historical context must be stressed initially: (I) Prabhākaran had one goal only: Eelam and a separate state; (II) the LTTE used two ceasefire periods in 1995 and 2001-06 as recuperating periods for renewal of their war effort; (III) as Ben Bavinck and the UTHR reports have insisted, Thamilīlam under Prabhākaran was a fascist state; and (IV) the Rajapaksa government which struggled for survival against the LTTE proved the validity of the Marxist dictum that there is an unity in any contradiction: it  became distinctly authoritarian itself, albeit still populist in its self-convictions.

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under accountability, authoritarian regimes, doctoring evidence, economic processes, Fascism, gordon weiss, governance, historical interpretation, human rights, Indian Ocean politics, law of armed conflict, life stories, LTTE, martyrdom, military strategy, politIcal discourse, propaganda, Rajapaksa regime, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, Tamil Tiger fighters, trauma, truth as casualty of war, vengeance, world events & processes, zealotry

Perilous Big Power/UN Interventions Here-There-Eveywhere

Thalif Deen, from the UN courtesy of InterPress Service, 7 October 2016, where the title is “UN Security Council’s ‘Perilous Interventions’ in War Zones” … Emphasis inserted by Editor, Thuppahi.

When the UN Security Council last week discussed the “deliberate” attacks on medical facilities in war-ravaged Syria and Yemen, Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon implicitly criticized some of the warring nations lamenting that “even a slaughterhouse is more humane” than the ongoing indiscriminate killings of civilians in the two devastating conflicts.The attacks on hospitals, he warned, were “war crimes and violations of international humanitarian law”. But Joanne Liu, International President of Medicins sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders), singled out “four of the five permanent members of the Security Council” for the continued atrocities and lambasted them for their role in the attacks against medical facilities. “The conduct of war today knows no limits,” she regretted, pointing out that the failure of the Security Council “reflects a lack of political will among member states fighting in coalitions and those who enable them.”

aa-thalif

Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under accountability, american imperialism, arab regimes, atrocities, authoritarian regimes, British imperialism, centre-periphery relations, Fascism, governance, historical interpretation, human rights, law of armed conflict, military strategy, politIcal discourse, power politics, slanted reportage, truth as casualty of war, UN reports, war crimes, war reportage, world events & processes

Robert Koch’s Bacteriology and Hitler’s Final Solution

Richard A. Koenigsberg,  whose title is “Hitler as the Robert Koch of Germany”

On March 24, 1882, the German physician and scientist, Robert Koch, presented his discovery of the bacterium that causes tuberculosis. Subsequently, the causal organisms of a great number of bacterial diseases were isolated. Writing on the history of German medicine, Paul Weindling (1989) describes how bacteriologists became aligned with the state—through the use of military analogies in their observations on bacteria. Koch described how “alien parasites” entered the body. Bacteriology was glamorized by comparing laboratory researchers to soldiers, “Warriors against Disease.”

koch at work Robert Koch at work

Weindling explains how spectacular advances in bacteriology during the 1880s and 90s greatly enhanced the public prestige of laboratory science. There was widespread adulation of Koch. Thousands of handkerchiefs on which his face was embroidered were sold. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, authoritarian regimes, discrimination, doctoring evidence, Fascism, fundamentalism, governance, historical interpretation, Hitler, life stories, politIcal discourse, power politics, racist thinking, the imaginary and the real, unusual people, violence of language, world events & processes, zealotry

A Pol Pot Hell-Hole: Thamilini’s Disenchantment with Prabhakaran and the Tigers in 2009

T. N. Gopalan, courtesy of newsminute … 17 March 2016, where the title is Woman LTTE leader’s memoir exposing their brutality has created a furor among Tamils” … with a few footnotes added by the Thuppahi editor nad highlights deployed to assist reading.

THAMILINI 22 “No question now, what had happened to the faces of the pigs. The creatures outside looked from pig to man, and from man to pig, and from pig to man again; but already it was impossible to say which was which.” Thamizhini, aka Sivakami Subramaniam,** in-charge of the political wing of the women’s section in the LTTE, might not have been familiar with the devastating close of the celebrated Animal Farm by George Orwell. But she perhaps felt as much when she learnt of the instructions to shoot at the legs of those innocent Tamils crossing over to government-controlled areas in the closing stages of the war in 2009. Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under accountability, atrocities, authoritarian regimes, Eelam, Fascism, governance, historical interpretation, life stories, LTTE, mass conscription, military strategy, politIcal discourse, power politics, prabhakaran, Rajapaksa regime, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, Tamil civilians, Tamil Tiger fighters, the imaginary and the real, unusual people, war crimes, war reportage, world events & processes

The Realities of Eelam War IV

Michael Roberts, courtesy of the essay in Colombo Telegraph  entitled “Down–to-Earth: The Hard Truths of Eelam War IV, ” which , alas, does not contain the vital hyperlinks. Nor does it contain the illustrative maps and images that are a vital component of any survey … and which therefore adorn this article. A fuller pictorial history can be seen in Roberts, Tamil Person and State. Pictorial, Colombo, Vijitha Yapa Publications, 2014, ISBN 978-955-665-231-4     

AA=pulidevanJust as in Kosovo if enough civilians died in Sri Lanka the world would be forced to step in”Pulidevan of LTTE to a pal in Europe (quoted in Harrison 2012: 63). Frances H--plus HarrisonPic from www.tamilnet.com

Guided by a series of studies that I have indulged in over the years 2010-15, let me summarize my findings in point form. The focus is on the period 2008-to-May 2009. However, four facets of the broad historical context must be stressed initially: (I) Prabhākaran had one goal only: Eelam and a separate state; (II) the LTTE used two ceasefire periods in 1995 and 2001-06 as recuperating periods for renewal of their war effort; (III) as Ben Bavinck and the UTHR reports have insisted, Thamilīlam under Prabhākaran was a fascist state; and (IV) the Rajapaksa government which struggled for survival against the LTTE proved the validity of the Marxist dictum that there is an unity in any contradiction: it became distinctly authoritarian itself, albeit still populist in its self-convictions. Continue reading

29 Comments

Filed under american imperialism, australian media, authoritarian regimes, British imperialism, disparagement, doctoring evidence, Eelam, Fascism, gordon weiss, governance, historical interpretation, human rights, Indian Ocean politics, legal issues, life stories, LTTE, martyrdom, mass conscription, military strategy, nationalism, news fabrication, NGOs, plural society, political demonstrations, politIcal discourse, power politics, power sharing, prabhakaran, press freedom & censorship, propaganda, Rajapaksa regime, religiosity, security, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, slanted reportage, sri lankan society, suicide bombing, Tamil civilians, Tamil migration, tamil refugees, Tamil Tiger fighters, truth as casualty of war, vengeance, war crimes, war reportage, world events & processes

Brendan Nelson commemorates the End of the Second World War in the Pacific

Brendan Nelson, Director of the Australian War Memorial, 15 August 2015, marking VP Day

BRENDAN + wAR MEM

Australians all let us rejoice, for we are young and free…….The first line of our national anthem – we sing it often, but how often do we really ponder its meaning? Life’s paradox is that what is most important to us, too often we are tempted to take for granted – families that love us and give meaning to our lives; political, economic and religious freedoms; being an Australian and carrying an Australian passport. We are free in no small way as a consequence of the events that bring us here today to commemorate the end of the Second World War in the Pacific and all that had preceded it.

Spanning six years, this cataclysm is the most destructive conflict in human history. The defeat of Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy and Imperial, Militarist Japan – claimed 60 million lives; 6 million Jews were murdered in the Holocaust. A life was extinguished every three seconds.

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under atrocities, Australian culture, australian media, cultural transmission, Fascism, historical interpretation, law of armed conflict, life stories, military strategy, patriotism, politIcal discourse, power politics, self-reflexivity, the imaginary and the real, war crimes, war reportage, world events & processes

Collective Memorials, Anniversaries and Reflection … at Sites & Endings of Violence

Tissa Jayatilaka, courtesy of Groundviews, 14 August 2015, anniversary marking Japan’ surrender in World War Two … and thus its end. See Editorial Note at end. In GV the title reads “Sights of violence, sites of memory: Reframing the past.”

The subject of war, memory, memorials, memorialization and the violence of the state has been rekindled both domestically and internationally in recent weeks. Sri Lanka’s ongoing general election campaign has focused on our long and brutal internecine war and the need for reconciliation. Internationally  the 70th anniversary of the awful events in Hiroshima and Nagasaki has been observed. The Hiroshima Peace Memorial commonly called the Atomic Bomb Dome in Hiroshima is part of the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1996. It serves as a memorial to the atomic bombing of Hiroshima on 6 August, 1945. Over 70, 000 is reported killed instantly and a similar number is said to have suffered fatal injuries from radiation. Bombs were dropped on Nagasaki on 9 August, 1945. Nagasaki’s Atomic Bomb Museum was  built in 2003 around the  only structure left standing near the bomb’s hypocenter. Some locals opposed the building of the Atomic Bomb Museum while some others were for it. It is now 70 years since the dropping of atomic bombs by the United States. Postwar Japan limited its military to self defence. Now Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’ plans to loosen the restrictions on what Japan’s military can do. Opinion is divided as most in Nagasaki and Hiroshima continue to be supportive of peace and disarmament. According to the Mayor of Nagasaki Tomihisha Taue , there is ‘widespread unease’ about Mr. Abe’ s legislation that will alter the constitutional requirement limiting Japan’s military to self defence.

Kanchanaburi_cemetery Kanchanaburi cemetery in Thailand

E-PASS MEMORIAL Dawn at SL Army Memorial Elephant Pass 

24Tamil maaveerar at Vadamaratchchi Tuyilam Illam, 2004

Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under accountability, atrocities, Fascism, heritage, historical interpretation, landscape wondrous, law of armed conflict, life stories, LTTE, military strategy, nationalism, patriotism, pilgrimages, politIcal discourse, power politics, reconciliation, riots and pogroms, self-reflexivity, Sinhala-Tamil Relations, sri lankan society, terrorism, the imaginary and the real, tolerance, truth as casualty of war, vengeance, world events & processes, zealotry, Zen at war