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Reflections induced by the Photograph of the SPD's Publicity Poster: 'Effects of Information Society on Labour Market' (in 'Der Spiegel' of 13th March 00, pp.142-143)


Political Parties Finished

- What comes Next?

By Wolfgang Fischer

download pdf.file ( german ) ( spanish )

First Landing of Kolumbus,
First Landing of Columbus (Guanahani, October, 12, 1492) - copperplate-engraving by Theodor de Bry (1528-1598), Photo: AKG Berlin


The presentation on the SPD's (Social Democrate Party, Germany) publicity poster of indigenous tribes-men trustingly approaching their future rulers and murderers may be ever so colourful. Yet the message it conveys can only be called thoughtless and in poor taste, linked as it is to the publicity text in which the SPD compares the start of the Internet Age with the discovery of the New World by Columbus, thus reminding of an event that marked the beginning of 500 years of suffering for the indigenous people of all continents.

History - not merely that of the last 5 centuries - has been founded upon torture, rape, racism - on open or subtly disguised force; and this has had a different and harsher effect esspecially upon women. For one main objective of colonial terrorism was, inducing women to identify with motherhood forced upon them through rape.

Against the background of an admission of historical misdemeanours in the course of human history slowly gaining acceptance - with even the Pope joining in - such a picture ought not to be serving as a symbolical advertising poster for the entering into a new era. What is required here is a great deal more sensitivity as well as more awareness in dealing with historical facts.

In the face of the topicality of recently published details exposing the colonial cruelty in Africa of the Belgian Crown - which used to be praised as being exceptionally "humane" -, we Europeans in particular ought to be able to develop an awareness of the universal historical blunder and its fatal effect upon the subdued peoples.

The large industrialised nations should gradually come to acknowledge that a large part of their development towards industrial wealth and technological advance was enabled solely on the basis of stolen gold treasures, exploited people and plundered resources. Only such recognition would facilitate an actual, sensitive understanding of the guilt accrued in the course of history.

Today still the tradition of this development - also called civilisation - is being maintained mainly at the expense of the women and their children from the lower classes of peripheral countries. This is shown more clearly than ever before by the feminisation of poverty or, respectively, of social responsibility throughout the world.


If this kind of picture today is meant to serve as an enticement for entering a new age, we may indeed expect nothing positive to come from this. As long as such a picture is not perceived as symbolising the beginning of cruelties and mistaken historical developments, there is obviously a lack of responsible preparedness or ability to admit guilt and make amends.

This means that the path towards developing a comprehensive justice system remains blocked while areas of potential conflict continue to exist. In Germany they are even being reinforced by the fact that the SPD, in its attempt to ingratiate itself with Capital, has jumped upon the band-wagon of Neo-Liberalism.

Blinded by imagined successes of his British counter-part, the German Chancellor Schroeder has so far failed to notice that for the majority of people this is a train that's moving backwards. For day by day on this journey certain social achievements gained in the last 100 years by difficult struggle are being ignored, sold or quite simply thrown overboard - achievements which for the most part were meant and gained for the benefit of wage-earners. Whenever females gained the benefit of such achievements, it was mostly as dependants of liberal citizens or socialist proletarians.

For the sake of political expediency social and ecological intactness is being sacrificed upon the altar of Capital's profit maximisation. This involves blatant genocide as the majority of the global population through hunger and deprivation is drifting towards slow but certain death.

Such a perverse development, - in which, to top it all, social-democratic governments are playing a vital part - proofs the political lies of those who pretend to lead people into a better future.

No less reprehensible seems the betrayal of their own programme by the German Green Alliance. Being solely motivated by a desire to retain perks and positions, it is downright outrageous.

Recent history, involving moreover the scandal about party contributions, seems to be clearly teaching us the one lesson that political parties may no longer be regarded as the torch-bearers of progressive policies.

Their overriding interest is an increase of their own power at the expense of a democratic system which is dying as the autonomy of the individual, be they liberal citizens or social-democrat wage-earners, is being eroded. This shows them to have failed to fulfil their historic mission. The people affected by this, in particular the women, will thus have no choice but to develop their own alternative forms of political organisation and articulation.

That is why we need new ideas for organising civil society. Governments of all kinds hardly take an interest any longer in protecting the people, but on the contrary are these days specialising in how to remove, for the benefit of Capital, those hindrances which were meant to protect mostly the male citizenry as well as the public interest - how ever defined - from the insatiability of mammon.

Thanks to the mass media, wars are nowadays enacted like theater plays. Moreover, they are called "humanitarian" and said to be contributing to the saving of civilisation. Truth is twisted in the service of private property. Lying, manipulation and deception is carried out quite openly: every day of the war vast sums are readily sent up in smoke. The huge industrial arms complex is beside itself with happiness. The so-called reconstruction fits in with the logic of profit maximisation; it appears to be an integral part of the strategy of private property.


Our task today is, to develop a philosophy of life against these politics of death and destruction! Every aware and life-affirming individual is called upon to offer resistance to a political system which, as is quite evident and very easy to verify, is placing the interest of Capital above the necessities of peaceful social co-existence.

In view of this fact the attitude advocated by the feminist political scientist Claudia von Werlhof e.g. seems of paramount importance. It is a dissentient attitude within an active political system which, in rejecting any kind of patriarchate, knows no rulers. It will overcome the divisions maintained by traditional politics ('divide et impera!': divide and rule!), as well as by religion and tradition, in favour of a wholistic system that is truly humane.

In this context the internet may be seen as a rather positive development, in that it facilitates the speedy and wide-spread dissemination of information beyond the mainstream that is ruled by financial considerations.

This kind of information, normally withheld by the daily media machines, can in the long run support the emergence of a state of mind that rejects government by the few; and in this way it will foster a comprehensive awareness of responsibility for our fellow-humans, the environmant and the future.

Through a horizontal network of information the civilisation of the future will be able to create a social climate in which alternative solutions, alternatives to the presently rather desolate future prospects, will begin to blossom.

On the basis of such a network an attitude of togetherness and mutual support spanning all continents will emerge which, merely through conscious refusal of supportive participation, will put an end to the globally destructive gamble "Turn yourself into Money".

Nature's gifts will be utilised by us (who are after all, Nature's children) in a way which will also consider the well-being of future generations.

Just as Nature is using her own laws, for example when pumping water from the depth of the subsoil right up into the tops of huge trees, so in the same way human global society can use its technological potential and achievements for the benefit of all.

This will be possible once this society is liberated from its present potential of destruction through being ruled no longer by a compulsive urge for profit maximisation but by a spirit of mutual assistance and universal cooperation.

(german version)

Poster of Social Democrate Party, Germany

"He travelled many years to discover the world. On the Internet it takes our students just half a day"


The British-created famine holocaust in Bengal in 1942-3 - by Sutapas Bhattacharya

In fact, such famines were the norm throughout British Rule as I later discovered. There were major holocausts throughout the Raj. In 2001 the Oxford historian Niall Ferguson (a Thatcherite now in the USA where the free marketeers love him) repeated in the Daily Mail under the heading "White Man's Burden" Kipling's myths about heroic Britishers saving starving Indians. I wrote to the newspaper saying this was the opposite of the truth and they published my letter in 2001. I also put up this info. on a BBC World War II website (Peoples War) in 2002 and just recently I put it up on Channel 4's Empire's Children website. I think that everybody ought to know about how the British whitewash the true story of their own racist imperialism which created these holocausts. American historian Mike Davis has noted that when finally forced to act to help prevent starvation in 19th Century Inida, the Brits instituted hard labour camps for the starving with with touch entrance criteria. Those who got in were given less calories than the Nazis gave to death camp inmates!

My father Surendra Nath Bhattacharya came to Britain in 1966 from Indian following an invitation from the British Legion as he was a qualified teacher. Towards the end of the war, my father had joined the Royal Indian navy, not because he supported Britain but because he needed a job. Indeed, most Bengalis had supported Subhas Chandra Bose (uncle of BBC sports reporter Mihir Bose), Nehru's rival for leadership of the Congress, who led the Indian National Army which fought with the Japanese against the British. Even non-violent Gandhi became captivated by Bose's exploits.

My mother Shima brought myself and my two brothers over to London the following year, forty years ago. The memory of the British Empire that was indelibly imprinted in the memory of my father and other relatives of his generation in Bengal was that of the starving refugees who flooded into Calcutta during the British-inflicted artificial Famine Holocaust during 1942-43 which killed 3 million Bengalis. My father often spoke with horror of the fact that these starving people did not beg for rice, they were so desperate they begged for "fanna" the wastewater from the ricepan.

Only once in 1997 when Channel 4 screened a programme on this famine has British Television covered the story of this artificial famine holocaust which was in fact not unique but typical of the British rule in India. There was no shortage of foodgrains but the British exported Bengal's grain and this resulted in the starvation of 3 million of the poorest in Bengal as prices rocketed. As the 1997 C4 programme showed, the British rulers tried to cover up the famine by deliberately reducing the actual death tolls. No effort was made to alleviate the crisis until the British owned Statesman newspaper eventually broke the true story. Even then when surplus grain was shipped in from other parts of India, it was not distributed to the needy until after Indian protestors piled up dead bodies of famine victims outside the Botanical Gardens in Calcutta. Amartya Sen lived through the famine as a boy and it was the memory of the famine that led him to take up economics where he is famous for showing how government policies, rather than natural disasters, create famine. He has confirmed the figure of 3 million excess mortalities.

This artificial famine, witnessed by my family, at the close of British Rule was in fact typical of the entire period of British Rule in India. Maria Mishra showed in her TV series on the Raj a few years ago that the Mughals and Marathas punished anyone found guilty of profiteering during famine periods and thus, under Indian rulers, few people starved. The British dismantled these indigenous systems to prevent famines. In 1770, just 13 years after the British takeover in Bengal their policies resulted in the Great Bengal Famine. In parts of Bengal one third of the population died whilst the British rulers hoarded grain and other food for export (as also occurred in Ireland during the Potato Famine). Historian Mike Davis has shown in Late Victorian Holocausts how British Social Darwinian and "Free Market" ideology resulted in massive famine holocausts during the Victorian era. Whilst millions were starving to death in the Deccan and the South, the British held the biggest feast in human history to celebrate Victoria becoming Empress of India. The Delhi Durbar feasted 60,000 plus Britishers and their Indian princeling collaborators for an entire week. In 1901, medical journal The Lancet estimated conservatively that 19 million Indians had starved to death in Western India during the 1890s due to the British, let them starve, policies, exporting Indian grain to the USA and Europe whilst the natives starved.

Even during the 1939-45 war the British rulers rejected American urgings to build aircraft factories in India with which to fight the Japanese rather than ship planes across U-boat infested oceans. But the British refused on the basis that an independent India might then possess some industries with which to compete with Britain after the war. After all the entire strategy of British rule had been one of deindustrialising India's thriving textile industry etc. and keeping India poor as a plantation and a captive market for inferior quality British products (as compared to western rivals).


see also

United States and NATO: The Axis of Genocide

By Francis A. Boyle, Jan 26, 2009

From: Z Net - The Spirit Of Resistance Lives -

What is the world to do about major human rights atrocities and catastrophes that undeniably do occur today? Certainly, the world must not accord the great military powers such as the United States, the NATO states, Russia, and China some fictive right of "humanitarian intervention" that these powerful states will only abuse and manipulate in order to justify military aggressions against less powerful states and peoples for their own selfish interests. There is no need to alter or update presently existing international law in order to expand the possibilities for a military "responsibility to protect" in response to purportedly new exigencies of the day-there are more than enough international laws and international organizations to deal with major human rights atrocities and catastrophes going on around the world today. The demand to do so reflects a political agenda seeking legal legitimacy, not a deficit in the existing law.

Indeed, behind most of the major human rights atrocities and catastrophes in the world today humankind has seen in operation the Machiavellian machinations of the great military powers. So it should have come as no surprise that the world witnessed outright genocide inflicted by Serbia and its Milosevic government against the Kosovar Albanians immediately after the United States and the NATO states launched their illegal war against Serbia in March of 1999, a genocide which NATO admittedly anticipated but which in actuality transpired as the direct result of its aggression. Of course the nominally Christian United States and NATO states could not care less about the basic human rights of Kosovar Albanians, most of whom are Muslims. Soon thereafter, the world witnessed once again outright genocide inflicted by Indonesia against the people of East Timor after decades of military and economic support had been provided to the genocidal military dictatorship ruling Indonesia by the United States and Britain-"our kind of guy," as the Clinton administration publicly referred to the genocidaire Suharto when he came to visit the United States.

Also in this regard, the world must never forget that the indigenous peoples of Canada, the United States, and Latin America have been subjected to continuing acts of genocide for over the past 500 years, all in the guise of bringing civilization. How can the United States and its NATO ally Canada talk about a "humanitarian mission" in Afghanistan when both states have a long history of practicing "humanitarian extinction" at home? Despite the slogan and the rhetoric of "Never again!" that was used with respect to the Nazi Holocaust against the Jews, toward the start of the twentieth-first century, genocide has become an increasingly familiar and acceptable tool for powerful states to wield against weaker states and peoples.

No state has the right or standing under international law to launch an illegal military attack upon another U.N. member state in the name of "humanitarian intervention." This principle applies to both the United States and Canada, which are today continuing to extinguish the indigenous peoples who live within their imperial domains under concepts similar to humanitarianism, if not so-labeled. It applies to Britain's prolonged colonial occupation of Ireland as well as its deportation of the people of Diego Garcia. It applies to the outright genocides Italy inflicted against the peoples of Libya and Ethiopia; those perpetrated by Spain and Portugal against the indigenous peoples of Latin America; the monstrous genocide committed by Belgium in the Congo; and the genocides committed by France in Algeria and Vietnam, all of whom averred their colonized peoples had been the better for it.

How could NATO member Turkey ever credibly claim some fictive right of "humanitarian intervention" anywhere given its longstanding campaign to submerge the Kurds as well as its previous extermination of the Armenians, a genocide which it still denies today. Only the Nazi-German genocide against the Jews in Germany and elsewhere has been recognized for what it was. Yet today a generation later the gullible world is supposed to believe the NATO fairy-tale that the German Wehrmacht is now on some type of "humanitarian" mission in Afghanistan. The wanton aggression by the U.S.-U.K. and their "Coalition of the Willing" against Iraq in the name of bringing human rights and democracy has resulted in four million refugees, over a million Iraqi deaths, and the wholesale destruction of the country's infrastructure - outright genocide.

The United States and its NATO Alliance constitute the greatest collection of genocidal states ever assembled in the entire history of the world. If anything the United Nations Organization and its member states bear a "responsibility to protect" the U.S. and NATO's intended victims from their repeated aggressions as they should have done for Haiti, Serbia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia, and now Palestine. The United States and the NATO Alliance together with their de facto allies such as Israel constitute the real Axis of Genocide in the modern world. Humanity bears a "responsibility to protect" the very future existence of the world from the United States and NATO.

(from "Tackling America's Toughest Questions", now at  


here is more:

King Leopold's Ghost, A Story of Greed, Terror and Heroism in Colonial Africa, by Adam Hochschild, Houghton Mifflin Co (Trd) 1999; ISBN: 0618001905 - Editorial Reviews -
Waiting for a post-conflict Sudan by Mandisi Majavu (May 02, 2004)
Torture and Abuse by Doug Dowd (May 24, 2004)

Lessons of Iraq War Start With US History by Howard Zinn, 03. 2006


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Emanzipation Humanum, version 6.2000, translation form german to english by Rainer Taëni. Criticism, suggestions as to form and content, dialogue, translation into other languages are all desired