19 March 2017   Leave a comment

Following the decisive victory of the Bharatiya Janata party (BJP) in India’s most populous state, Uttar Pradesh, Prime Minister Modi has appointed Yogi Adityanath as its chief minister.  Mr. Adityanath has repeatedly called for India to be called a Hindu rastra, or Hindu nation, and has criticized popular Indians such as Mother Teresa and the Bollywood actor Shah Rukh Khan for their comments in support of a secular India.  According to The Guardian: “Adityanath is facing criminal charges of attempted murder, defiling a place of worship and inciting riots in Uttar Pradesh.”

Yogi Adityanath

Paul Pillar used to work for the CIA and is currently a professor at Georgetown University.  He is a brilliant analyst and has written an essay for The National Interest on the rise of anti-Semitism in the US and the world, and its relationship to the resurgence of white nationalism in the US and US policy toward Israel.  It is a very careful and deliberative analysis which lays out many of the tensions that exists in these tangled relationships.   His conclusion is worth thinking about carefully:  “They should worry about it.   It has been said, with good reason, that Jews are the canary in the coal mine as far as prejudice and sometimes lethal hatred are concerned, because they often have been the first to suffer from it.”  Anti-Semitism is a virulent disease that demands our total attention.

The Whanganui River on New Zealand’s North Island has long been considered sacred by the Maori people.  The river has now been granted all the rights, duties, liabilities, and privileges of a legal person in order to preserve its integrity as a living presence to the Maori people.  Gerrard Albert, the lead negotiator for the Whanganui iwi [tribe] describes the legal victory in this way: “We have fought to find an approximation in law so that all others can understand that from our perspective treating the river as a living entity is the correct way to approach it, as in indivisible whole, instead of the traditional model for the last 100 years of treating it from a perspective of ownership and management.”  The ruling is a possible guide to ways we can think about the earth in a manner that does not make the earth subservient to human interests.

Posted March 19, 2017 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: