National Register of Citizens, India’s “Pogrom” Begins.

Indian government’s new National Register of Citizens (NRC) drove nearly two million innocent people off their citizenship status, causing havoc. The Hindu supremacist government’s actions and rhetoric are similar to Trump’s, and eerily remind us of Hitler’s pogrom in Germany.

“Who’s going to pay the price?”

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Yes, India’s police minister Amit Shah often called Bangladeshi immigrants “termites.” Just the same way, here in America, Trump called Mexican immigrants “rapists and murderers.”

How strikingly similar are India’s BJP of Modi and Shah, and America’s Republican Party (or GOP) of Trump! Both parties are supremacist: BJP is Hindu supremacist, and GOP is white Christian supremacist. The mastermind of Trump’s anti-immigrant hate is Steve Miller. And in India, it’s perhaps Amit Shah.

There are other similarities. Behind the Republicans are huge and violent forces, such as National Rifle Association (NRA) and KKK. Behind BJP is extremely militant RSS, an organization I was deeply involved with from 1962 through 1979.

Both KKK and RSS have been ardent supporters or followers of Hitler, Mussolini or such fascist or Nazi forces. Both organizations are anti-immigrant, anti-black, and anti-Muslim. Both are fiercely anti-socialist. In India, RSS is also fiercely anti-Christian, but they have downplayed it now, because they don’t want to irk Trump and lose his support.

Both BJP and GOP are for total privatization of the economy. In fact, they want to do away with the government; to them, as Ronald Reagan said, “Government is the problem.” They want to keep a skeletal government, mainly for military, police, and mass-spying agencies such as FBI and CIA in America, and RAW in India.

Most importantly, both forces want to use a democratic electioneering system to actually destroy and replace the traditional system with an authoritarian “One religion, one country, one language, one leadership” structure.

In fact, that is a stark reminder of how Hitler came to power in Germany.

In 1930’s Germany, Hitler called the Jews something similar to what Trump calls the Mexican immigrants and Amit Shah calls the Bangladeshis. He called the Jews “dangerous bacillus,” which means germs, bacteria. But because nobody reads history anymore, or analyzes it, reality like it is now forgotten or ignored.

Especially today, in case of India, the people in power want to divert people’s attention off the gravely ill economy, catastrophic climate crisis, unemployment, income inequality, or the countrywide violence on women and other weaker sections of the society. The manipulated, artificial crisis in Kashmir or the new NRC crisis in Assam is highly expedient.

On one hand, we have massively rich communities like Ambani and Adani (or in case of America, the Walton family or Koch Brothers), and with them we have their Goebbels-style media corporations, working closely with Trump, Modi, Shah, and RSS’ supremo Bhagwat.

Goebbels said, “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.” In today’s India and USA, corporate media have been following that model for a long time. And they have successfully brainwashed the ordinary people. Nobody realizes that in a true democracy, dissent is essential; in fact, dissent is patriotic. Now, with mafia on the ground, Indian voices of dissent are branded as traitors. They are heckled and harassed. In cases like Gauri Lankesh, Kalburgi or Panesor, they have killed those voices. For others like Amartya Sen, Arundhati Roy, Medha Patekar or Nasiruddhin Shah, they have undermined their credibility.

The new NRC chapter is an integral part of this game. We’ve had Pulwama, and we’ve have Kashmir. Now the new episode is Assam and NRC. The so-called National Registration of Citizens pushed off two million (twenty lakhs) ordinary, innocent people of Indian citizenship, and put them in serious jeopardy. These people are mostly Bengali Muslims or Hindus, many are lifelong Indian residents. Now they are without status. They are neither Indian, nor Bangladeshi, nor of any other country. Major despair, poverty, disease, starvation, joblessness face them. Some have already killed themselves after the government published the first list of “non-citizens.”

This is a historic chapter of barbarism. An international crime – crime that global media such as the New York Times, BBC, the Guardian and Al Jazeerah have all strongly criticized.

Where are these two million people going to go, from an economic and social point of view? They will escape and hide for some time, and they will then die, or go to prison camps Indian government is building following U.S.-style private prison. America’s private prison is all about making profit out of putting people in jail. They even trade their shares on the stock market. Don’t believe me? Look up Geo and CCC – two big private prison corporations on Google.

Then, out of these hapless people, many would end up in Bangladesh (or West Bengal) to save lives – the way Rohingya refugees did. That is going to put major financial and space burden on Bangladesh, which is perhaps a part of the game too. Squeeze Bangladesh’s economy to death, because right now, India’s economy is sinking and Indian rupee has hit an all-time low. Make Bangladesh and Pakistan equally miserable, and save face. We need to understand all these various pieces of the puzzle – the various elements of the big game.

Then, end result of all this misery would be more violence, and more terrorism. And reaction to that violence and terror would be more violence, war, hate, bigotry, and repression. More hunger, despair, and more religious fanaticism and social divisiveness. Both on the Hindu and Muslim sides.

So, let us try to answer the question I asked above, “Who’s going to pay the price?”

I wait for your answer.

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Photo courtesy: CNN (not-for-profit, educational use)

U.S. Elections: Footsteps of Fascism

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A very major, critically important U.S. election is tomorrow, November 8, 2016. I am asking people to vote AGAINST Donald Trump. Why? Here is why.

Comments and share welcome.

(Photo courtesy: all the photos in this article are taken from http://agamikal.com/?p=1510, where they published a Bengali version of this article.)
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Footsteps of Fascism — Part 1

By Partha Banerjee
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In the 1930’s, Weimar Republic in Germany failed to stop the economic, political, and social chaos. Although the global economy was not nearly as global as it is today, and media was not so grotesquely pro-1% and interconnected worldwide, Euro-American colonialism was acting together for a long time, destroying mankind. But its heydays were over.

Great Depression in America caused by an extreme inequality, rampant privatization of banks, industries and financial institutions, and corporate profiteering and corruption impacted Germany and Europe, and economic uncertainties unraveled. Capitalism was falling apart, capitalists’ modus operandi was being exposed, and a strong socialist revolution in Russia was moving the working class people and younger generation away from the status quo. Europe was more and more leaning left and progressive. Labor unions and social justice movements were getting stronger.

The rulers of corporate capitalism — now in crisis — was looking for a way to distract people’s attention from their depravity and their own political parties’ created turmoil. The ordinary people were extremely angry at the elite’s corrupt practices, indifference, and a depraved, immoral lifestyle.

Weimar’s so-called liberal leadership failed them: unemployment was high, prices were high, deflation of the currency was causing havoc, and people worked longer hours sacrificing family life and time for children. Their savings evaporated, and the wage-productivity gap was at an all-time high.

The working men and women didn’t quite figure out the reasons: media and mainstream politicians both from the liberal and conservative sides disillusioned them.

The time was ripe for a leader who would crush down on the socialists and communists and trade unions and social justice groups, find a variety of people as convenient scapegoats, and unite and mobilize the ordinary men, women and families around a doctrine of ultra-nationalism, old glory, total employment, severance from internationalism, and social morality.

Time was ripe for Hitler. Time was ripe for a Nazi Germany.

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Footsteps of Fascism — Part 2

By Partha Banerjee
—–

So, Hitler came to power, first with help from Hindenburg of Weimar Republic (who shared power with him as an appeasement effort — a huge blunder), and then through a self-styled chancellorship, followed by landslide mandate on his own. He called his political base National Socialist Workers’ Party — a German acronym of which is NAZI (I don’t know German, but that’s what I read — correct me if I’m wrong).

But Hitler was no socialist; it was a pre-meditated, calculated confusion created to project himself as a socialist leader. (Today, some of the far right wing organizations in the U.S. have strange, naive-sounding names — such as Center for Immigration Studies or CIS, American Legislative Exchange Council or ALEC, Federation of American Immigration Reform or FAIR-US, etc.) Hitler was anything but a socialist. There was no concept of equality in his party structure; Hitler assumed the role of a dictator, and his words were the last. This didn’t happen overnight; rather, by purging people who dissented, and rewarding those who complied, he went on to become the undisputed tyrant that he was.

Hitler did many things during his approximately a decade of global plundering, and we all more or less know it. But the striking resemblances of what he did and what we see today are the following: (1) He destroyed labor unions and social justice groups that were left and progressive (In 1933, Hitler’s storm troopers occupied all trade union headquarters across Germany, and union leaders were arrested and put in prison), (2) He began a massive and all-pervasive spying and phone-tapping of German citizens, particularly those who showed an iota of opposition; even totally innocent citizens were called spies, arrested, and executed, (3) He orchestrated a propaganda against Jews and communists labelling them responsible for the social and economic woes, and even though we hear about concentration camps (through plethora of Hollywood movies and corporate media) throwing Jews in gas chamber, hundreds of thousands of socialists, communists, trade union leaders, and left and progressive intellectuals and authors were also detained and killed — a part of history that is conveniently ignored and later distorted, and (4) He through his media and propaganda machine of that time whipped up an ultrapatriotic fervor for old German-Aryan glory, projecting Germany as the “best country in the world.”

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Then, as we all know, Hitler, Mussolini, Franco and such people in Europe and rulers like Tojo in Japan built a global force of aggression that was called the Axis (the post-9/11 Bush-termed “Axis of Evil” could have come from that old, three-country force: at least, the similarity was there). The Axis quite rapidly started a series of military aggression on neighboring countries, eventually drawing a large number of countries worldwide into the war, which later became known as World World II.

Noam Chomsky discusses Germany’s plummet from its cultural and political heights in the 20’s—when Hitler received only three percent of the vote—to the decay of the 30’s, when the Nazis rose to power. Chomsky says although the situations are “not identical,” they are similar enough, to warrant concern. Likewise, the economic destruction of Greece, according to Chomsky, may lead to the rise of a fascist party, a phenomenon we’ve witnessed all over Europe. In India also, the failure of a corrupt center-left (Gandhi’s Congress Party) has seen a rapid surge of an ultranationalist, Hindu party, which is now in the seat of power, with an overwhelming majority.

“The fall of the Weimar Republic has a complicated history whose general outlines most of us know well enough. Germany’s defeat in WWI and the punitive, post-Treaty of Versailles’ reparations that contributed to hyperinflation and total economic collapse do not parallel the current state of affairs in the U.S. But Hitler’s rise to power is instructive.”

Hitler used to be ridiculed as a clown too, before Hindenburg gave him the position of a chancellor. In U.S., our question is (question that media bypasses): who made Trump, Trump?

“Hitler’s struggle for dominance truly catalyzed when he allied with the country’s conservatives, who made him Chancellor. Thus began his program of Gleichschaltung—“synchronization” or “bringing into line”—during which all former opposition was made to fully endorse his plans.

In similar fashion, Trump has fought for political relevance on the right for years, using xenophobic [anti-immigrant] bigotry as his primary weapon. It worked. Now that he has taken over the Republican Party—and the religious right—we’ve seen nearly all of Trump’s opponents on the right, from politicians to media figures, completely fold under and make fawning shows of support. Even some Bernie Sanders supporters have found ways to justify supporting Trump.”

[The last couple of paragraphs are paraphrased from an article in openculture dot com].

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Footsteps of Fascism — Part 3 of 3 

By Partha Banerjee
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So, given the historical background, and the strong similarities between what happened in Hitler’s Germany and what we’re witnessing here in USA (or India), where do we stand now?
Let’s concentrate on USA for the time being keeping November 8 in mind, even though the situation in India is gravely dangerous with ultra-nationalists already in power, and I have personal stake in that part of the world.
November 8 might not see a racist, sexist, pro-KKK white supremacist, anti-immigrant xenophobe who dodged taxes, milked the system, and became filthy rich and more corrupt than ever before to be the president of the United States. All indications are that Hillary Clinton will be the president, and the Clinton saga that began in 1992 will continue.
Great news! But is it, really?
I pose a few questions to ourselves who believe in a strong labor movement, and believe that a strong labor movement is the key to a strong, united middle class that can fight back against the tyranny of the one percent.
Simply put, Trump and his supporters and followers do not believe that labor unions have role to play in today’s America. In fact they want to completely do away with unions.
Yet, the following questions remain.
Question 1. Why did Bill Clinton pass NAFTA, going against AFL-CIO? What has Hillary Clinton’s position been on NAFTA, and now on TPP? Remember, TPP is often termed as “NAFTA on steroids,” and Obama advocated fast-track passing of TPP.
Question 2. Why did Bill Clinton dismantle FDR’s Glass-Stegall Act that kept private banking separate from investment banking? Some key experts suggested that breaking down Glass-Stegall actually led to Wall Street’s open and legal gambling with ordinary Americans’ money — trillions of dollars — and cleared the pathway to an economic destruction that saw the Great Recession of 2007? What has Hillary’s position been on the above?
Question 3. The Clintons’ close relationship with the Bush Dynasty as well as evil corporations such as Goldman Sachs, Wal-Mart, Monsanto, and Exxon. These four corporations, as well as the private prison industries, are symbols of Corporate America’s greed, exploitation, and repression of the ordinary people — both in USA and around the world. What we see in America today — a dangerous, out-of-control, and extremely repressive variety of capitalism, UNLIKE what we see in Germany, France, Canada, Sweden, Belgium or Japan — have destroyed the middle class, destroyed the labor movement, created the unprecedented, massive wage and wealth inequality (where 0.1 percent, i.e., one in a thousand rich Americans amassed wealth totaling what the other 90 percent have between them), and at the same time, destroyed the climate to a point that scientists think is practically irreversible. Unemployment numbers are artificially down, labor density is down to 10% in USA compared to 40% during FDR or even Nixon, and key expenses such as health care, education, and housing are out of reach of the ordinary men, women and families.
All of the above have gave rise to a countrywide upswelling of ordinary Americans, who are frustrated and angry. Whether it’s Occupy Wall Street, or Tea Party, or today’s right-wing’s rally behind Trump — are all manifestations of this major frustration and anger. Add to it the relentless police brutality on blacks, the fact that one million blacks and other minorities are in private prison across the U.S., and poor immigrants are scapegoated for our economic woes, just the same way Hitler scapegoated Jews and socialists and gypsies for Germany’s woes, and exterminated them.
It is true that in no sane mind, we can support a crazy racist, sexist guy like Trump for president. His fascistic, war-mongering, xenophobic, supremacist drumbeat scares the hell out of ordinary men and women like us. But UNLESS we bring back true, participator democracy in our country, strengthen labor unions, bring the inequality back to the 1940-1980 levels, and stop the destruction of the environment, as well as stop America’s global war game that went out of control since the Vietnam era, there will be a time when another Trump — who is not outwardly so insane and morally depraved as Trump — will rise on the scene, and in the absence of an educated working-class American generation, will be able to rise on top, just the same way Hitler did it, dismantling the Weimar Republic.
We hear the footsteps of fascism right now, right here. If we want to stop their takeover of America and by default, the world, we must find a real alternative political force, a force that will not just take advantage of our fear and votes, but will actually work for us, just the way FDR did it in the 30’s and 40’s.
We need to rally to bring ourselves to the position of power. After all, democracy is not only about voting every four years. It’s about our voices heard, and our day-to-day issues addressed.
If the one percent don’t do it, then we might empower ourselves, to do it on our own.
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Seventy Years of Hiroshima, and My American Friend

Personal. Too personal.
Personal. Too personal.

I hang my head in shame.

On August 6, 1945, Enola Gay dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima.

An estimated 80,000 men, women and children instantly died. Many others died of burns and wounds later. Many more died of cancer and other illnesses directly related to the radiation the bomb created.

Japan and U.S. were locked in a gruesome war, and the Japanese army was doing inhumane barbarity especially on the Chinese they attacked. The Allied Forces led by U.S., Britain and U.S.S.R kept fighting a hellish World War II with the Axis Powers led by Germany, Italy and Japan. The bomb made Japan surrender quickly. Second World War, however, had ended three months ago, when Hitler committed suicide in Germany.

This is history we practically all know. Just the same way everybody knows about the Holocaust.

But U.S. never apologized for using atom bombs on innocent civilians in Hiroshima on August 6 and then on Nagasaki on August 9. Nowhere in the history of mankind, such a massive, catastrophic genocide happened when a country used its horrific, untested, unprecedented killing powers to knowingly, purposefully, deliberately kill hundreds of thousands of innocent people so massively, so instantly.

All over the world, people condemn the barbarity in Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It is truly an annual day of condemnation. I remember, when I grew up in Calcutta, the first time I heard about it, I was frozen. I thought, how could it have happened? Why did they kill thousands of innocent children who had nothing to do with the war?

Then, after coming to America, I learned more about the horror of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and got angrier deep inside. I joined the peace movement, and learned some more.

But America has a different take on the subject. Not just the powers in America. The ordinary people, many of whom are highly educated. Some of these people are otherwise nonviolent, peace-loving, decent people. But they have a strange perception about atom-bombing and mass-killing in Japan.

(And of course, the younger generation neither knows, nor cares about such “old” history. Seventy years later, America has managed to sweep it successfully under the rugs. Unlike the Holocaust. Everybody in America knows about the Holocaust.)

American media did not disclose the actual impact of the bombing.
American media did not disclose the actual impact of the bombing. General MacArthur censored it.

I had once spoke with a learned, very liberal and kind science professor about this subject. I lived in Albany, New York at that time. I was staying in his house for about a month, before my family joined me. The conversation came up, and I challenged him to take a position on it. He said, he would strongly support using the A-bomb on civilians.

I asked why. He said, because the war was getting out of control, and America needed to end it swiftly.

I said, but at the expense of 80,000+ innocent human lives who had nothing to do with the war? School children, teachers, doctors, nurses, mothers, grandmothers…all included?

He said, it was unfortunate, but hey, didn’t it end the war? He got irked that I kept pushing him on the subject.

When I heard his response — a rather thoughtful, informed response and not an angry redneck response — a knot swelled up in my throat. Possibly, a tear welled up in my eyes. I stopped talking to him, and left the conversation.

That’s all I could do. I am a nonviolent person myself. I don’t want to kill or hurt anybody.

Japan has gone nonviolent too. They have not resorted to violent, terrorist revenge on America.

I am glad they didn’t. And that’s why I am on the side of the innocent of Japanese men, women and children who perished on that fateful day.

You will always be in my prayers.

I truly apologize for what the U.S. did to you.

Sincerely,

Partha Banerjee

Brooklyn, New York

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Related reading: The Hiroshima Myth

Weep. Remember. Apologize.
Weep. Remember. Apologize.

Late Breaking News!! IMF Just “Bought” A New India President!!

The Three New Stooges!

Allegedly, an unprincipled, corrupt political system with an unprincipled, corrupt media just elected an IMF-nominated and Corporate-America-backed career-partisan politician as the new president of India — a man who as the longtime finance minister has brought the country’s economy to the brink of doom. 

I hope you read this little blog and the accompanying blog on IMF and Wall Street’s global politics and terrorism, and share them with your friends, family and colleagues. Thank you for your time for reading and sharing.

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Background:

The Indian president has always been a nameplate: a rubber stamp for the prime minister. But there’s a strong possibility that Pranab Mukherjee’s (the person in the middle — see photo with Sonia Gandhi) incumbency will change this because (1) he is the current finance minister of India and ALSO the current IMF director of India (very few know this); (2) in all likelihood, through putting him as the next India president, IMF will perpetuate its economic status quo that began during Rajiv Gandhi and his then-finance minister Manmohan Singh (India’s current prime minister: the bearded man on the left); (3) media do not mention, let alone discuss in-depth, the role of IMF and its Structural Adjustment Program (SAP) that turned a once-egalitarian (egalitarian compared to what it is now) economy upside down — both in India and elsewhere such as Argentina, Greece, Italy and Spain; (4) Sonia Gandhi, India’s de facto queen mother, is completely unchallenged by India’s so-called democratic political hegemony and media establishment when in actuality, she’s been a part of the country’s catastrophic and historic corruption, inflation and violence; and (5) Sonia Gandhi is obviously transferring power from now-prime minister Manmohan Singh so that she can put her son Rahul Gandhi, a political neophyte just like his father Rajiv Gandhi, as the next prime minister in 2014 (or 2019), and that her handpicked president Mukherjee can expedite that process. Of course, this is all assumption based on the current scenario. It might change as the political landscape of India is changing fast.

Foreground:

Fascists and bigots are now supporting a new, scary, global economic fascism!

India’s far right Shiv Sena, a Hindu outfit originally created in the 80’s allegedly to violently break down a legendary textile workers’ strike in Bombay, just threw their support behind Sonia Gandhi’s handpicked presidential candidate. Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray said: “Islamic terrorism is growing and Hindu terrorism is the only way to counter it. We need suicide bomb squads to protect India and Hindus.”

Indian media that often brandishes secularism, does not say a word. The liberal pundits and political parties do not cry foul either.

International Monetary Fascism — also known as IMF — is playing their scary, scandalous game to take India over. It’s the beginning of a long, dark era of recolonization.

History Repeats Itself!

Lord Clive’s East India Company, with sabotage from a bunch of their paid spies and operatives, took India over in 1757. Then they ruled, looted and destroyed the country for the next two centuries before they broke the country in three pieces, created famines, killed millions, and made millions more permanently destitute. Now, two hundred and fifty years later, their new reincarnate IMF,  World Bank, the global corporate puppeteers and their notorious intelligence agencies, with help from their Indian operatives, are going to take over the country of 1.2 billion people — eighty percent of them haplessly poor — for the next number of centuries.

The Barbaric, British Partition of India, 1947.

Sounds too much of an exaggeration? Okay, quiz me on it. I’d love to take up on your challenge.

IMF is almost there to put its own man Pranab Mukherjee — the current finance minister of India and ALSO the country’s official IMF director (never disclosed by media)– as the next president of India. The “democratic” process is almost complete. Billions of dollars have changed hands underground to bring necessary votes to the table. Those few still bargaining for a better deal will be dealt with — in cash or kind. Media will be euphoric, vindicating Indian democracy.

You can quote me: you shall see eulogies in New York Times soon. I’ll come back and tell you when it happens.

New IMF “Renaissance” in Italy. They Got Spain Too!

The new colonists have just recently put their own men on top of two other major democracies Spain and Italy. India — the largest democracy in the world today — is their latest kill.

And the entire takeover is happening in broad daylight — in a nonviolent, bloodless, even invisible coup!

It might sound like I’m staging a major drama and scaring off people on unfounded allegations. First of all, I am a small, powerless Indian-American man sitting in New York — 10,000 miles away from New Delhi.  Secondly, I have no political or monetary stake here: I do not belong to any of the political or non-political parties that are busy playing the game. Plus, I can’t do much damage to anybody — let alone the mighty IMF or Sonia Gandhi family — by writing a small, no-name blog.

Don’t worry: I cannot upstage anybody’s game.

But I still want to write and talk about it because I am convinced this is exactly what is happening, and I just cannot be silent about it. I may be poor and powerless, but they could not YET take away my education, analysis and conscience, and my decades of grassroots political experience, both in India and America.

I believe what is happening in India right now is absolutely horrendous and this silent, bloodless coup can bring India to at least another century of miserable slavery. I know this takeover will kill countless poor people and families in the subcontinent.

I told you before that IMF’s New Terror in India is Going to Kill My Family. I’m telling you again: it’s going to be a genocide where hundreds of thousands of innocent and poor people will lose their lives and dignity. Women will lose their honor. Children will die of new starvation. Workers — men, women and children — will be thrown into even more brutal subjugation and violence.

A horrendous inflation and price rise for oil and essential commodities — we see it happening right now — will devastate millions of poor and middle-class Indian people.

I said it before, and I’m saying it again. You decide.

I’m inviting you to read the other recent posts I wrote here on my blog — on this subject. Please let me know what you think. Please let me know if there’s anything we can do to stop the International Monetary Fascists before they reoccupy India with their invisible and media-overlooked weapons of mass destruction (you can call it WMD or SAP): (1) permanent economic policy change by opening the floodgate to multinational, corporate investment, (2) drastic devaluation of Indian currency, (3) total privatization and deregulation of India’s economy, (4) destruction of India’s social welfare system, (5) obliteration of the nationalized banks and financial systems, (6) repression of labor union and workers’ rights, and (7) drastic cuts in taxes for the rich.

This is IMF’s new “Shock and Awe.”

I am NOT crying wolf. I am warning you about the violent, grotesque wolf that is about to start mass killing. I told you this before and I’m telling you this again, now.

The New IMF Terrorism in India Can Kill My Family. Read it here. Click on this link. Let me know what you think. Let others know about it too. Please.

Let’s do something about it. Can we do anything about it?

If you decide not to, let me tell you: YOU ARE NEXT!

Sincerely Writing,

Partha

Brooklyn, New York

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Horrible, Old Wine in a Horrible, New Bottle!