I refer to Mr Eric Phillips’ letter captioned “Widespread indifference to the plight of Africans in Guyana” (07.10.13) where Phillips declares that “The Indian population is indifferent to African needs”. Phillips then quotes a speech given by Elie Weisel nine years ago on the theme of the “indifference” the Europeans showed as the Jews were being persecuted and killed by the Nazis in the concentration camps.
Phillips’ statement attacking the Indians for indifference is absolutely astonishing as the Indian population of Guyana, like Weisel and other Jewish people, had been subject to a systematic “Judenhetze” (ie systematic persecution of Jews) for over a century. This Indian Judenhetze was intensified over the last half-a-century.
From the 1950s, Indians, the most capitalist-oriented segment of the population, were labelled “communist” and were persecuted and attacked with impunity. In the 1960s defenceless Indians were robbed and beaten up in the streets and everybody, with indifference, looked the other way. There was systematic arson of their businesses and plunder of their property, and everyone, with indifference looked the other way. Proportional Representation and an “Executive all-powerful President” were forcibly imposed on the Indian population, and all, with indifference, looked the other way.
Indians, for decades were not employed by government or government corporations such as the NIS and the Co-op Bank.
The state also bankrupted the sugar and rice industries of which it had taken control impoverishing large numbers of Indian families.
And during this half-a-century, Indians saw their families fragmented and were forced to emigrate to survive, scores of thousands desperately fleeing everywhere in the world to find a haven. And everybody, with indifference, looked the other way.
From the 1990s, Indians have been attacked in organized street violence and organized criminality with many Indians being murdered or injured in addition to being robbed, and the indifference continues. Some African leaders have even called this “the African armed resistance”.
Mr Phillips is barefacedly blaming the Indian victims for the crimes perpetrated on them, a common phenomenon which the Jews have suffered over the centuries.