Friday, 24 January 2014

Buddhist terror

seems like an oxymoron. That's largely because the likes of the Dalai Lama and his celebrity admirers in the West have given the faith good PR. But terror has never been alien to those of the Buddhist faith. The Buddhist clergy in Japan were strong supporters of the regime there in the 1930s and 1940s. Japan of course has never had a Muslim population, and even today there is almost zero immigration, so the "Muslim question" doesn't really arise there.

In Burma things are rather different. In the 1990s and during most of the first decade of this century it seemed as though intervention would be the only hope for the people of Burma, with thousands of political prisoners, the winners of the last free elections, in 1988, dead, in exile or locked up, and human rights non-existent. However, the corrupt elite still running that country have begun, in small ways, to see the light. There is a measure of democracy. Aung San Suu Kyi is out of jail, and got elected. But one minority, the Rohingya Muslims, are being subjected to terror and slaughter on a massive scale. This is not being much reported. The one Burmese leader who is known in the West, Aung San Suu Kyi, has been shamefully silent on this. (If you have not seen the rather good film about her, 'The Lady', starring Michelle Yeoh, then do.) Time magazine deserves credit for highlighting this dreadful situation, thanks Harry's Place for putting it out there too. Here is an extract from its report:

Although there has long been tension between the Buddhist majority and the Muslim minority in Arakan, the situation deteriorated rapidly after three Muslims allegedly raped and murdered a Buddhist girl in May 2012.
On June 4, 2012, not long after the alleged rape, Buddhists stopped a bus and invited non-Muslims to get off. Then they let the bus go on a short distance, stopped it again, dragged approximately ten Muslim passengers onto the street, and beat them to death. After that, the violence against Muslims became organized and genocidal. Buddhists launched coordinated attacks against Muslim villages and neighborhoods all over Arakan state. Dozens of Muslims from across Arakan told me similar stories: Buddhist mobs, protected by police, showed up screaming anti-Muslim slogans and demanding that the Muslims flee. They brought guns and knives, and the Muslims who stayed behind—in some cases because they were physically unable to flee—were shot, speared, and hacked. Some of the rest made it to other countries to start their lives over, but most of the displaced are in the dozens of squalid camps across Arakan state. The penalty for leaving these camps is three months’ imprisonment—if a Rohingya is caught by the cops. If caught by the wrong civilians, it could be lynching. The Buddhists burned the Muslims’ abandoned homes and possessions to cinders. Some Muslims eventually retaliated, and a much smaller number of Buddhists died or were driven into camps of their own after riots across the state.
So, Muslims are being slaughtered. George Galloway, where are you? Are British youth training as jihad warriors to go to Burma and save Muslims from the Buddhist terror? If not why not?

I only ask.

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