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The Age of Genocide

The Age of Genocide

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The Age of Genocide

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  1. The Age of Genocide Exploring 20th century genocides

  2. A crime without a name… “The aggressor ... retaliates by the most frightful cruelties. As his Armies advance, whole districts are being exterminated. Scores of thousands - literally scores of thousands - of executions in cold blood are being perpetrated by the German Police-troops upon the Russian patriots who defend their native soil. Since the Mongol invasions of Europe in the Sixteenth Century, there has never been methodical, merciless butchery on such a scale, or approaching such a scale. “And this is but the beginning. Famine and pestilence have yet to follow in the bloody ruts of Hitler's tanks. “We are in the presence of a crime without a name.” - Winston Churchill describing the brutality of the German forces occupying Russia, 1941.

  3. Genocidegeno – meaning racecide – meaning killing The word genocide was coined in the midst of the Holocaust.

  4. GENOCIDE • genos (Greek for family, tribe or race) • -cide (Latin - occidere, to massacre). • The word was created in 1943 by Raphael Lemkin

  5. The 1948 U.N. Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide defined genocide as Acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnic, racial, or religious group

  6. 20th Century Genocides With the definition of genocide in mind, try to list as many 20th century genocides as you can.

  7. The Herero Genocide, Namibia, 1904-05Death toll: 60,000 (3/4 of the population) The Armenian Genocide, Ottoman Empire, 1915-23 Death toll: Up to 1.5 million The Ukrainian Famine, 1932-1933Death toll: 7 million The Nanking Massacre, 1937-1938 Death toll: 300,000 (50% of the pop) The World War II Holocaust, Europe, 1942-45 Death toll: 6 million Jews, and millions of others, including Poles, Roma, homosexuals, and the physically and mentally handicapped, The Cambodian Genocide, 1975-79 Death toll: 2 million The East Timor Genocide, 1975- 1999 Death toll: 120,000 (20% of the population) The Mayan Genocide, Guatemala, 1981-83 Death toll: Tens of thousands Iraq, 1988 Death toll: 50-100,000 The Bosnian Genocide, 1991-1995 Death toll: 8,000 The Rwandan Genocide, 1994 Death toll: 800,000 The Darfur Genocide, Sudan , 2003-present Death toll: debated. 100,000? 300,000? 500,000? Major genocides of the 20th century

  8. Namibia, 1904-1905 • Under German colonial rule, German Southwest Africa is modern day Namibia. • German Lieutenant-General Lothar von Trotha said, 'I wipe out rebellious tribes with streams of blood and streams of money. Only following this cleansing can something new emerge'. • On October 2, 1904, von Trotha issued his order to exterminate the Herero from the region. 'All the Herero must leave the land. If they refuse, then I will force them to do it with the big guns. Any Herero found within German borders, with or without a gun, will be shot. No prisoners will be taken. This is my decision for the Herero people'.

  9. The Armenian Genocide, 1915 U.S. Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire, Henry Morgenthau Sr., concluded a “race murder” was occurring. He cabled Washington and described the Turkish campaign: ”Persecution of Armenians assuming unprecedented proportions. Reports from widely scattered districts indicate systematic attempt to uproot peaceful Armenian populations and through arbitrary arrests, terrible tortures, whose-sale expulsions and deportations from one end of the Empire to the other accompanied by frequent instances of rape, pillage, and murder turning into massacre, to bring destruction and destitution on them. These measures are not in response to popular or fanatical demand but are purely arbitrary and directed from Constantinople in the name of military necessity, often in districts where no military operations are likely to take place…there seems to be a systematic plan to crush the Armenian race.” The documentary, The Armenian Genocide aired on PBS in April, 2006.

  10. The Armenian Controversy To this day, the Turks deny that the Genocide occurred. This is a VERY controversial issue to the Turks. Turkey suspended its military ties with France in 2006 after the French parliament's lower house adopted a bill that that would have made it a crime to deny that the Armenian killings constituted a genocide. 23 countries acknowledge the event was genocide In early October 2007, the U.S. Congress opened debate on whether or not to declare the Armenian event a genocide – much to the dismay of the Turkish government.

  11. Joseph Stalin, leader of the Soviet Union, set in motion events designed to cause a famine in the Ukraine to destroy the people there seeking independence from his rule. As a result, an estimated 7,000,000 persons perished in this farming area, known as the breadbasket of Europe, with the people deprived of the food they had grown with their own hands. The Ukrainian Famine 1932-1933

  12. Nanking Massacre, 1937-1938 • In December of 1937, the Japanese Imperial Army marched into China's capital city of Nanking and proceeded to murder 300,000 out of 600,000 civilians and soldiers in the city. • The six weeks of carnage would become known as the Rape of Nanking and represented the single worst atrocity during the World War II era in either the European or Pacific theaters of war. Two Japanese officers, Toshiaki Mukai and Tsuyoshi Noda competing to see who could kill (with a sword) one hundred people first. The bold headline reads, "'Incredible Record' (in the Contest to) Cut Down 100 People—Mukai 106 – 105 Noda—Both 2nd Lieutenants Go Into Extra Innings"

  13. The Holocaust, 1939-1945 • The Holocaust was the systematic, bureaucratic, state-sponsored persecution and murder of approximately six million Jews by the Nazi regime and its collaborators. • "Holocaust" is a word of Greek origin meaning "sacrifice by fire“. • The Nazis, who came to power in Germany in January 1933, believed that Germans were "racially superior" and that the Jews, deemed "inferior“, were an alien threat to the so-called German racial community.

  14. Cambodia1975-1979 The Killing Fields were a number of sites in Cambodia where large numbers of people were killed and buried by the Communist regime Khmer Rouge, which ruled the country from 1975-1979. One Khmer slogan ran:'To spare you is no profit, to destroy you is no loss.'The massacres ended in 1979, when Communist Vietnam invaded the country and toppled the Khmer Rouge regime.

  15. The East Timor Genocide 1975-1999 The Indonesian invasion of East Timor in December 1975 set the stage for the long, bloody, and disastrous occupation of the territory that ended only after an international peacekeeping force was introduced in 1999.

  16. GuatemalaThe Mayan Genocide, 1981-83 In the words of the 1999 UN-sponsored report on the civil war: 'The Army's perception of Mayan communities as natural allies of the guerrillas contributed to increasing and aggravating the human rights violations perpetrated against them, demonstrating an aggressive racist component of extreme cruelty that led to extermination en masse of defenseless Mayan communities, including children, women and the elderly, through methods whose cruelty has outraged the moral conscience of the civilized world.'

  17. Iraq, 1988 The Anfal Campaign against the Kurds was a systematic and deliberate murder of at least 50,000 and possibly as many as 100,000 Kurds. It was the culmination of a long term strategy to solve what the government saw as its “Kurdish problem”. Halabja (March ’88) was one chapter of this campaign in which chemical weapons were used against this Kurdish Village.

  18. Bosnia, 1991-1995 Bosnia was part of the Ottoman (Turkish) Empire until 1878 and then of the Austro-Hungarian Empire until the First World War. After the war it was united with other Slav territories to form Yugoslavia, essentially ruled and run by Serbs from the Serbian capital, Belgrade. Yugoslavia disintegrated in June 1991 In 1992 in the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, conflict between the three main ethnic groups, the Serbs, Croats, and Muslims, resulted in genocide committed by the Serbs against the Muslims in Bosnia.

  19. The Legacy of Mogadishu1993 • the most violent U.S. combat firefight since Vietnam • started out as an operation to capture warlord Mohammed Farah Aidid--turned into a firefight that lasted seventeen hours, left eighteen Americans dead, eighty four wounded and continues to haunt the U.S. military and American foreign policy • Its legacy, say many experts, was a continuing U.S. reluctance to be drawn into other trouble spots such as Bosnia, Rwanda and Haiti during the 1990s.

  20. Rwanda1994 800,000 Tutsis were murdered by Hutus in a 3 month period. The international community watched the event unfold and did nothing.

  21. Rwandan Women Change Their World Before the 1994 Rwandan genocide boys outnumbered girls in school by 9 to 1. Today boys and girls attend school in equal numbers. Before the genocide fewer than 6 percent of college graduates were female. Today women make up as much as 50 percent of the student body on Rwandan college campuses. Before the genocide the government was just over 5 percent female. Today, women make up 30 percent of Rwanda’s local leadership and almost a quarter of national leadership. The Rwandan Lower House of Parliament is 49 percent women – the highest percentage of women in any parliament in the world.

  22. Genocide Never Again?

  23. Genocides of the 20th Century • Turkey, 1915: 1,500,000 Armenians • USSR, 1934-39: 13,000,000 • Germany, 1939-1945: 11,000,000 • Japan, 1941-44: 5,000,000

  24. Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. 1948 Genocide = Crime Against Humanity – a violation of international law • As of Oct 2005, 137 nations have ratified this law • Including: • The United States (signed 1948) • China (signed 1949) • Cambodia (signed 1950) • Rwanda (signed 1975) • Bosnia-Herzegovina (signed 1993) • Sudan (signed 2003)

  25. And after the law was created… • China, 1966-69: 11,000,000 • Cambodia, 1975-79: 1,700,000 • East Timor, 1976-98: 600,000 • Bosnia, 1992-96: 180,000 • Rwanda, 1994: 800,000 (in 100 days)

  26. Was it vague? • Article II:  In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group • 2 elements: • Mental element = intent • Physical = five identified acts

  27. Killing members of the group; • Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; • Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; • Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; • Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.

  28. What causes Genocide • Institutions of government • totalitarian systems • Context • Possibility sharply increases when the government is involved in international or domestic wars • Motives • to destroy a group that is perceived as a threat to the ruling power • involves the destruction of those who are hated, despised, or conversely are envied or resented • pursuit of an ideological transformation of society • purification, or the attempt to eliminate from society perceived alien beliefs, cultures, practices, and ethic groups • economic gain

  29. The Eight Stages of Genocide • Genocide is a process that develops in eight stages that are predictable but not unchangeable. • The later stages must be preceded by the early stages, though earlier stages continue to operate throughout the process. By Gregory H. Stanton (Originally written in 1996 at the Department of State; presented at the Yale University Center for International and Area Studies in 1998)

  30. Stages of genocide • Classification • Symbolization • Dehumanization • Organization • Polarization • Preparation • Extermination • Denial

  31. 1) Classification • All cultures have categories to distinguish people into "us and them" by ethnicity, race, religion, or nationality: German and Jew, Hutu and Tutsi. Bipolar societies that lack mixed categories, such as Rwanda and Burundi, are the most likely to have genocide.

  32. US THEM

  33. 2) Symbolization • We give names or other symbols to the classifications. We name people "Jews" or "Gypsies", or distinguish them by colors or dress; and apply them to members of groups. Classification and symbolization are universally human and do not necessarily result in genocide unless they lead to the next stage, dehumanization. When combined with hatred, symbols may be forced upon unwilling members of pariah groups: the yellow star for Jews under Nazi rule, the blue scarf for people from the Eastern Zone in Khmer Rouge Cambodia.

  34. 3) Dehumanization • One group denies the humanity of the other group. Members of it are equated with animals, vermin, insects or diseases. Dehumanization overcomes the normal human revulsion against murder.

  35. 4) Organization • Genocide is always organized, usually by the state, though sometimes informally (Hindu mobs led by local RSS militants) or by terrorist groups. Special army units or militias are often trained and armed. Plans are made for genocidal killings.

  36. 5) Polarization • Extremists drive the groups apart. Hate groups broadcast polarizing propaganda. Laws may forbid intermarriage or social interaction. Extremist terrorism targets moderates, intimidating and silencing the center

  37. 6) Preparation • Victims are identified and separated out because of their ethnic or religious identity. Death lists are drawn up. Members of victim groups are forced to wear identifying symbols. They are often segregated into ghettoes, forced into concentration camps, or confined to a famine-struck region and starved.

  38. 7) Extermination • Extermination begins, and quickly becomes the mass killing legally called "genocide." It is "extermination" to the killers because they do not believe their victims to be fully human. When it is sponsored by the state, the armed forces often work with militias to do the killing. Sometimes the genocide results in revenge killings by groups against each other, creating the downward whirlpool-like cycle of bilateral genocide (as in Burundi).

  39. 8) Denial • Denial is the eighth stage that always follows a genocide. It is among the surest indicators of further genocidal massacres. The perpetrators of genocide dig up the mass graves, burn the bodies, try to cover up the evidence and intimidate the witnesses. They deny that they committed any crimes, and often blame what happened on the victims. They block investigations of the crimes, and continue to govern until driven from power by force, when they flee into exile. There they remain with impunity, like Pol Pot or Idi Amin, unless they are captured and a tribunal is established to try them.