Showing posts from June, 2014

Are the Rohingyas of Myanmar facing GENOCIDE? Dr. Stanton believes so, and so do I.

Are the Rohingyas of Myanmar (Burma) victims of genocide? This debate has been going on for a number of years amongst the human rights groups. As an independent researcher and human rights activist, I have had maintained that they are victims of genocide. It won't be any exaggeration to even claim that amongst the serious activists, I am probably the first to claim that they have been facing genocide and the worldbody should protect them before they become an extinct people. I am glad that Dr. Gregory Stanton, President of Genocide Watch, has also agreed that the Rohingyas are facing genocide in Myanmar. He wants the world body  to rise up against their extermination campaign by the Buddhist people and government of Myanmar. Here you can hear Dr. Stanton's speech on the subject.

Warning - my AOL account was hacked while I was in Puerto Rico

Last week I was in Puerto Rico and stayed in a Hyatt hotel outside the capital city. There I accessed my personal account on the computer and now I realize that some hacker was able to access my password. This morning while at work in the USA, I was promptly alerted by a very old friend of mine who had seen a letter sent to him asking for some $3100. The hacker used my email address and said that I got mugged while visiting Turkey with my family and that I needed money to return. I have never been to Turkey. It is a scam. In the past I have received similar letters in the name of some of my own acquaintances. In the first of such letters, I was visibly concerned about the sad condition of a friend - Mr. Baki. I was almost about to send him the required money via Western Union until a wise friend of mine asked me to call Mr. Baki's home and mobile numbers. I did that and found that it was all a scam. He was not stranded or mugged in the UK. These scammers have the means to hack

Cheney’s Obscene Chutzpah

John F. Kennedy's famously said, "Success has many fathers but failure is an orphan." Iraq epitomizes failure of American policy and its failure has multiple credible claims to its paternity. As the crisis in Iraq deepens so is the finger-pointing on the rise with the Republicans in the USA blaming President Obama for letting the strengthening of the ISIS (sometimes called the ISIL - Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) and the Democrats blaming former president George W. Bush for invading Iraq on a false claim. Dick Cheney, Bush’s vice president, even wrote an op-ed column in collaboration with his daughter Liz, in the ultra-conservative newspaper – the Wall Street Journal in which they audaciously blamed President Obama claiming, “ Rarely has a U.S. president been so wrong about so much at the expense of so many .” Such delusional comments from an architect and a die-hard neocon proponent of the Iraq invasion do not surprise me. The Cheneys have joined a growing

Buddhist violence against Muslims in Sri Lanka is a threat to secularism

There was a time when Sri Lanka was an ideal secular state, or so it felt for all - the majority Buddhists, minority Hindus, Muslims and Christians. It was a peaceful island nations of various races and religions. But those days are long gone. These days Sri Lanka (formerly Ceylon) is known for its ugly, murderous, racist and bigotted Buddhism, setting the country on a competition with the other Buddhist country Myanmar for the ignoble title to the 'Den of Intolerance.' It is a sad commentary to what was and what has become to this multi-religious south Asian country. Like in Myanmar, the problem lies with militant, terrorist Buddhist monks that are continuously lighting the fire of hatred against anyone non-Buddhist. Muslims are an easy target in both places. They are on a competition to show how terrible Buddhism is. It is not peaceful at all. As a matter of fact it is rotten and violent - or so they make it to be. You can view some examples of anti-Muslim violence in Sri

Nicholas Kristof On the plight of the Rohingyas of Myanmar

New York Times op-ed columnist Nicholas Kristof has recently visited Rohingya camps, which are like cages. You can view his trip report by clicking here .

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights is alarmed on Communal Violence in Sri Lanka

The communal violence of Sri Lanka's Buddhists against Muslims has erupted on Sunday 15 June in the town of Aluthgama following a large rally of the Buddhist group Bodu Bala Sena (BBS). After the rally, violence erupted on both sides as the BBS and supporters moved in procession through Muslim neighbourhoods, chanting anti-Muslim slogans. Homes, shops and mosques were attacked and some set ablaze. Despite a curfew and deployment of approximately 1,200 police, violence apparently continued into the night. The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay expressed her deep alarm Monday at inter-communal violence taking place in south-western Sri Lanka in which two, or possibly three, people have reportedly been killed and scores injured. “The Government must urgently do everything it can to arrest this violence, curb the incitement and hate speech which is driving it, and protect all religious minorities,” the High Commissioner said. “I am very concerned this violence could

Buddhist violence against Muslims in Sri Lanka

In some of my older articles I have mentioned the nexus between the murderous Buddhist zealots in Myanmar and Sri Lanka. As a matter of fact, the ties are much deeper for such extremists and bigots, and not just limited to those two Buddhist-majority countries.  As the latest report on Buddhist violence against Muslims in Sri Lanka suggests there is an increasingly alarming similarity between the crimes of bigoted Buddhists against Burma’s Muslim minority and a rising tide of violence against the Muslims of Sri Lanka. Here I share below the latest information from a newspaper : Government sources in Colombo protest that there is no resemblance, arguing that the big difference is that no one has been killed in attacks on mosques and Muslim homes in Sri Lanka. Though unofficial reports have suggested that there has been at least one Muslim fatality, there can be no doubting the savagery of attacks on Muslim properties. The vicious campaign by monks belonging to the Bodu Bala Sena

Dr. Tun Aung to now serve a reduced sentence in Myanmar prison

The Amnesty International has confirmed that Dr Tun Aung, a political prisoner of conscience in Myanmar, has been granted several reductions to his original sentence of 17 years. According to the Myanmar National Human Rights Commission (MNHRC) now has one year and one month left to serve in prison. While we are all glad to learn that Dr. Tun Aung - a family man, doctor, and community leader amongst the Rohingyas of Burma -  will serve a much reduced sentence we should not forget that his imprisonment was a crime that was committed by the Myanmar government. He should not have served a single day in the Burmese prison. He has already served two years in the prison for no crime except for being a Rohingya. Dr. Tun Aung is in poor health. The government should release him immediately.  If not released soon, he may die inside the prison for which the Myanmar regime will ever be held responsible.

Brotherhood of Mankind - the only hope for survival

Nearly 1300 years ago, Hassan al-Basri (R: may Allah have mercy on him), one of the great saints, scholars and preachers of Islam, was asked: "What is Islam, and who are the Muslims?" He answered: " Islam is in the books, and Muslims are in the tomb ." Hassan (R) was a Tabi’i (successor) who had the pleasure of meeting many Companions of the Prophet Muhammad (S: may the blessings of Allah and peace be upon him).   He (21-110 AH, 642-728 CE) was a paragon of the truly pious Muslim. He was an outspoken critic of the political rulers of the Umayyad dynasty (661–750 CE). His political opinions, which were extensions of his religious views, often placed him in precarious situations. During the years 705–714 CE, Ḥ assan (R) was forced into hiding because of the stance he took regarding the policies of the powerful governor of Iraq, al- Ḥ ajjāj. After the governor’s death, he came out of hiding and continued to live in Basra until he died. Among later generations o

Another Hindu Minister 'justifying' rape in India

Amid a nationwide outrage over rising incidents of rape and insensitive comments by political leaders, Chhattisgarh's home minister Ram Sevak Paikra has come with his bizarre interpretation of a rapist's act claiming sexual assaults are not "deliberate".   You can view and hear his comments by clicking here .

Shaikh’s Murder – Is it the start of a sinister plan in Modi’s India?

A 28-year-old Muslim man was beaten to death in Pune, India on Monday night (June 2) by Hindutvadi zealots with suspected links to a Hindu fundamentalist outfit over a Facebook message they found offensive, according to police. The victim - Mohsin Mohammed Sadique Shaikh - had been living in Pune since 2006 and was working as a young IT manager with Ujjwala Enterprises in Pune for the last four years. Shaikh was bludgeoned to death after being beaten with hockey sticks near Hadapsar area on the outskirts of Pune. Shaikh's cousin Salman said that the victim and his roommate were returning home in Bankar colony on their motorcycle after picking up their dinner. "A gang of youths blocked his way near the lane just behind his house and started hitting him with sticks. While the roommate managed to escape, they bludgeoned my cousin with stones and fled. He was lying covered in blood for about 15 minutes. His brother rushed there and took him to a nearby hospital where he died d

Sikh Violence at the Golden Temple, Amritsar, India

Thirty years ago, in 1984 the Sikh Golden Temple at Amritsar was raided by the Indian military to flush out Sikh separatists of the Khalistan movement that was led by Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale. The then prime minister Indira Gandhi called in the operation in which many Sikhs got killed resisting the raid. Last Friday rival groups of Sikhs clashed at the shrine. Ceremonial swords and staffs were swung in anger, resulting in injuries and panic. The violence broke out after a group of "radical Sikh activists" wanted to brandish their swords and chant slogans calling for a separate Sikh homeland, or Khalistan, according to the Times of India . The newspaper says at least 12 people were injured. Video from the shrine shows tightly packed groups of agitated men wearing orange, yellow or blue turbans, yelling and arguing in the shrine complex as sword fights broke out. As the sound of clanging metal rang out, attendees rushed to get out of the way of the blows. In one sequence

Is a Federal System necessary for Burma?

I just got a letter from a reader who wrote: "I have just checked your website and I wonder your proposal of a federal state within Burma. How can it be possible , is this federal system a solution to almost all the conflicting peoples in the world now?" My reply follows: Surely, not every state requires a federal state. But Burma does need it badly since it is a conglomerate state, artificially curved out by the British in 1948 that has hundreds of ethnicites and many religions. The population has very little in common - the very ingredients necessary for nation-building. Without a federal structure I see little hope of survival of this country. The bullets are never a guarantee to hold a together an artificial state made of diverse and racist communities. But the federal state formula alone will not cut it for Burma since it is also mired in obnoxious racism and bigotry against anyone who is not a Buddhist, esp. the Rohingya Muslims. So, its political leader

The Appalling Apartheid State of the Rohingyas Must End

Nicholas Kristof is a very well-known news reporter and columnist for the New York Times where over the years he has posted many articles that are based on his firsthand account of the subject matter. In his latest article “ Myanmar’s Appalling Apartheid ” (NYT, May 28, 2014), Kristof wrote about Myanmar and the appalling apartheid nature of the murderous regime and its Buddhist populace that have long refused to accept the presence of the non-Mongoloid, Indian-Bangladeshi looking and racial group of people that are mostly Muslims and are known as the Rohingya people of Arakan (now called the Rakhine state), Burma’s western frontier state bordering Bangladesh. Unlike many news reporters, Mr. Kristof is a very well read person and criticizes the racist attitude of the Buddhist people in Myanmar and its rogue regime. He writes, " There are more than one million Rohingya in Rakhine State in the northwest of Myanmar. They are distinct from the local Buddhists both by darker