“A 14-year-old girl was dragged into a forest and raped on the orders of a village council in remote eastern India in retaliation for a sex assault blamed on her brother, her family and police said Friday. Jitendra Singh, a top local police official, said two men have been arrested in the rape case. They include the village headman and the main suspect, identified as the husband of the woman who was allegedly molested by the victim’s brother. The victim’s brother has also been arrested on charges of molestation. The girl’s mother told CNN-IBN news channel that she pleaded with the council and other villagers when they ordered the rape ……………….”
Mohammed Haider Ghuloum
“The “Vibrant Gujarat” in Modi’s marketing materials stops, however, at the farthest reaches of the city, where thousands of Muslims displaced by the 2002 riots continue to huddle in relief colonies like Citizen Nagar, disconnected from schools, transportation, medical facilities and basic municipal services. Suleiman, a sixth-grader when his family was driven from their home, went to live with relatives in another Muslim colony to continue his studies. Most students just dropped out, he said. The warren of concrete shacks and unpaved streets fills every afternoon with young men his age lazing on rusted chairs and idle rickshaws, with no jobs to go to. In the home he shares with his parents and three other family members, a dug-out latrine serves as the bathroom. Only recently, after a months-long campaign by social workers and residents, did the city begin sending two trucks of potable water daily to the slum’s 200 families. The difference between his neighborhood and a more prosperous one, Suleiman said, was simple. “Go to any Hindu area and you’ll see running water, street lights, paved roads,” he said. “In all the Muslim areas, nothing has changed.” Over the last decade, Ahmedabad has become one of India’s most segregated cities. While Hindus and Muslims live apart from each other in many parts of India — and communal violence breaks out periodically — in Ahmedabad the divisions are more systematic and even supported by law……………”
Narendra Modi, the new prime minister of India, is the Hindu ultra nationalist who enhanced apartheid in Gujarat. He supported an Gujarati anti-Muslim version of Jim Crow policies in the old American South. He has been quickly invited to the White House. Corporate America, always with a huge market and cheap labor in its sight, will be pleased.
Then again, running India is not the same as running a state. Political reality may modify the strident divisive “Hindu nationalism”.
“The African strongmen are going the way of Nkrumah, and in extreme cases Gaddafi, not Nyerere. The societies they lead are marked by growing internal divisions. In this, too, they are reminiscent of Libya under Gaddafi more than Egypt under Mubarak or Tunisia under Ben Ali. Whereas the fall of Mubarak and Ben Ali directed our attention to internal social forces, the fall of Gaddafi has brought a new equation to the forefront: the connection between internal opposition and external governments. Even if those who cheer focus on the former and those who mourn are preoccupied with the latter, none can deny that the change in Tripoli would have been unlikely without a confluence of external intervention and internal revolt. The conditions making for external intervention in Africa are growing, not diminishing. The continent is today the site of a growing contention between dominant global powers and new challengers……. The contrast with Western powers, particularly the US and France, could not be sharper. The cutting edge of Western intervention is military. France’s search for opportunities for military intervention, at first in Tunisia, then Cote d’Ivoire, and then Libya, has been above board and the subject of much discussion. Of greater significance is the growth of Africom, the institutional arm of US military intervention on the African continent………………”
China and India intervene in Africa in an economic and commercial capacity. They are militarily to weak (compared to Western powers) and too ‘distant’. And they are too ‘new’ to the region, as world powers and not ethnically. The West, especially the French have always intervened militarily in Africa, except for a hiatus of a couple of decades. That hiatus was only Anglo-American: the French never stopped, as French presidents continued to send expeditions to prop up their favorite dictators. The West is back in force now, from Somalia, to Libya, to Cote D’Ivoire, to other spots overtly or covertly. Is it a new age of colonialism for the “Dark Continent”?
And speaking of Western intervention: the Arab World is not exactly free of it. From Iraq to Libya to Yemen to Lebanon to Sudan to Somalia and other places, the West is engaged against a host of foes, real or perceived. Like Africa which it overlaps, the feeble and corruptly managed Arab world can’t seem to get its (
shit) act together, persistently inviting outside intervention: intervention from the West, Israel, Turkey, and Iran. The whole region is like a vacuum wittingly or unwittingly begging for intervention (prostrate and legs wide open, I’d say if I were rude and crude, which I ain’t). Some of the potentates even hire foreign mercenaries from South Asia and form foreign legions of Colombians and Australians and Blackwater denizens, among others. The Arab world is supposed to have been educating at least three generations since the wave of independence in the 1940s. Yet in the past several decades the Arabs have never been less independent than they are now and arguably never less ably led.