Friday, January 11

Book Review: The Turks haven't learned the British way of denying past atrocities

Very cynical review of a rather interesting book. I am extracting some quotes but surprised that the role of the british in other incidents such as the Cossacks or the Jalianwalla Bag massacre or even the aftermath of the 1857 mutiny has not been mentioned at all. Still, interesting stuff!

Atrocities? Which atrocities? When a Turkish writer uses that word, everyone in Turkey knows what he is talking about, even if they deny it vehemently. But most British people will stare at you blankly. So let me give you two examples, both of which are as well documented as the Armenian genocide.

In his book Late Victorian Holocausts, published in 2001, Mike Davis tells the story of famines that killed between 12 and 29 million Indians. These people were, he demonstrates, murdered by British state policy.

Three recent books - Britain's Gulag by Caroline Elkins, Histories of the Hanged by David Anderson, and Web of Deceit by Mark Curtis - show how white settlers and British troops suppressed the Mau Mau revolt in Kenya in the 1950s. Thrown off their best land and deprived of political rights, the Kikuyu started to organise - some of them violently - against colonial rule. The British responded by driving up to 320,000 of them into concentration camps.

All this to be taken with a grain of piquant salt!!!

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