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Not In Our Name - Dancing Down The Blvd.

by Arthur Baker Monday, Oct. 07, 2002 at 7:04 PM

LA Not In Our Name - Dancing Down Wilshire Blvd. Against War and Represssion

Not In Our Name - Da...
nion15.jpg, image/jpeg, 1242x942

error
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Dude

by Dude Mc Dude Thursday, Oct. 24, 2002 at 12:34 PM

Ahh the Aztecs... I see when they arent ripping out the hearts of the living enemies they conquered in brutal wars of agression, they are supporting peace movements...

And the idiot with the Mexican Flag, Whats the #1 Industry in Mexico.
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OneEyedMan

by KPC Thursday, Oct. 24, 2002 at 1:13 PM

...I think these are cultural dancers, not some Aztec high priests on lunch break from cuttin' out hearts...

...they haven't done that since waaaaay before the white racist police gave up killing innocent civilians...

...what? Y'mean they're still doin' that? Savages!
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ethnocentric fool

by tecpatl Thursday, Oct. 24, 2002 at 10:09 PM

not one european ever witnessed one incident of human sacrifice...that was used by the spanish to justify their brutality and genocide on the indigenous people of these lands. its easy to abuse people when you dont even consider them human. accusing them of worshipping the devil, when the concept of the devil is a babylonian idea. you need to learn the history from the eyes of the opressed not the opressor. "until lions have their own historians, the hunter will always be glorified" -african proverb
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Simple

by Simple Simon Saturday, Oct. 26, 2002 at 7:09 AM

So, this is all made up, right?

http://emuseum.mnsu.edu/prehistory/latinamerica/topics/human_scacrifice.html

Revisionist history is so fascinating.

Aztecs never killed anyone, they were, let me guess: A culture that embraced all faiths and sexual orientations, one that valued the input of women, and women held positions of great authority, they were so very respectful of the environment and wouldn't think of quarelling with their neighbors. But they had to be put down because they were 'brown' people who possessed gold.

Horseshit.

There is ample historical and archialogical evidence to support the fact that the Aztecs did indeed practice human sacrifice. So did the Celts. So did just about every culture on Earth at some time during their development. There is also ample historical evidence to suggest that the Aztecs were, in fact, brutal overlords who terrrorized their neighbor tribes to the point that these tribes were willing to work with the Spaniards to free themselves of Aztec rule.

And why would the Europeans need a justification to conquer anyone? They did not live in an age of justification. To whom would they have to justify? The voters? There were none. Spain had just completed the reconquista, evicting the last of the Arabic Moors from Spain. They were in the throes of the Spanish Inquisition. There really wasn't much concern for civil rights. If a country wanted something, and had the means to take it, they took it. I have no problem with your wanting to embrace your culture, and having pride in it; but face up to historical fact and be honest.




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.........

by ........ Monday, Oct. 28, 2002 at 4:01 AM

Yes the Aztecs practiced human sacrifice. So did much more recent Europeans such as the Spanish (Inquisition? Witch burnings? Call it what you like). It is a terrible shame that we only remember the Aztecs for human sacrifice and associate it less with other cultures (even recent ones) which practiced it. What bias.
As to not needing justification to do what they liked in the late middle ages, this is simply untrue. There was no international law as we have now, but there was the church, which, although corrupt, had to keep up appearances as the organization of the Prince of Peace. You couldn't just make war if you felt like it. Just as today, enemies had to be falsely demonized first. There was in fact alot of propaganda in those days, usually delivered from the pulpit. It was very important for a king to keep favour with the majority of his population (they had a little thing called peasant revolts in those days). The idea that it was some kind of right wing Garden of Eden is false. Though there was a great deal of immoral conduct on the part of the rulers, there were also concepts such as noblesse oblige and protecting the weak.
The King of Spain actually initially forbid war against the Aztecs; what Cortes did was burn the ships he arrived in to prevent dissidence amongst his crew and essentially went AWOL. The regent sent troops under Narvaez to arrest him but these were defeated by Cortes. Once the conquest was a fait accompli, the regent relented.
http://www.carpenoctem.tv/military/cortes.html

On the topic of human sacrifice in more recent times, somewhat north of Aztec country, I suggest you have a look at this.

http://www.geocities.com/bohemian_grove_dirt/
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Simple

by Simple Simon Monday, Oct. 28, 2002 at 9:24 AM

Can you read? I freely acknowledge in my post above that many, if not all cultures practiced human sacrifice at one time. It is Senior Headuphisbutt above that denies that the Aztecs did so.

And as for your argument that governments needed to justify their activities to the Pope, that is so much poppycock. By the time in question the Netherlands, England, All of Scandinavia and most of Germany were Protestant. The European powers were engaged in internecene conflicts which had less to do with religion and more to do with power. Wars and atrocities were commonplace at this time, so to expect that the Europeans would treat the Aztecs any differently than they would treat their continental enemies is childish. I believe that it is important to view things in their historical context, not through the eyes of twenty-first century man.
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.............

by ............ Monday, Oct. 28, 2002 at 10:48 AM

You're regarding medieval culture as monolithic, which it was not. There were certainly prohibitions against atrocities even in the Protestant country - yes, that's right, and singular - being England. Although there were Protestant communities on the continent, none of the governments there were.
That isn't to say they didn't occur. But as I mentioned there had to be justification (eg demonization and subhumanization) beforehand. Even today atrocities are widespread, even by the oh -so-good USA, but you cannot conclude from that there is no international law and people don't care what their governments get up to. Not a fact. Nor can governments simply do as they please without massive PR campaigns of demonization, as is occurring right this very moment and which you seem to be wholeheartedly participating in.
As to answering the pope, that's not quite what I said. What I said was their legitimacy in the eyes of the people was based on the church (of whatever flavour), not on the pope. And the church had to reconcile itself with the pacifist statements of Jesus. Thus an excessive demonization of the opponent usually occurred before any war action, to pacify the population and make them acquiesce to war. Doing this attracted larger and more spirited musters which was a factor in victory (along with mercenaries and the quality of the standing army, of course) and prevented revolts (which were fairly commonplace at the time, and rather dangerous too).
If you really need to believe in some sort of unilateralist's fairy tale world you'll have to go back a little farther in history to the era when rulers were perceived as divine beings (although Caligula won't cut the mustard on that score).
You're forgetting we're talking about an era which produced such things as the Magna Carta, and was not so morally primitive as you suggest. Certainly they would have found our ways of initiating and conducting warfare horrific. Concepts of 'chivalry' were not always followed, however, they existed in a widespread form such to the degree that during World War One the disappearance of 'honour' from the battlefield was mourned.
Certainly atrocities were widespread, but so they are now. These occur in spite of morals regarding conflict, but do not deny the existance of such morals.

Check my link on human sacrifice.
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Protestantism

by historian Monday, Oct. 28, 2002 at 6:09 PM

"By the time in question the Netherlands, England, All of Scandinavia and most of Germany were Protestant."

Why do you people talk about things you don't know a damn thing about? You just make yourself look poorly educated and prone to filling in gaps with make belief.
Martin Luther didn't even publish his thesis until 1517, just two years before the Conquest of the Aztecs in 1519. The first country to break away was England which didn't pass the Act of Supremacy for another 17 years and even then the Anglican church did not, for a very long time, consider itself 'Protestant' and maintained most Catholic traditions. In point of fact there were no European states embracing the Protestant faith nationally until the 1540s.

The person who mentioned chivalry was a bit off. Chivalry was pretty much dead by this time, although the concept of noblesse oblige did survive some time into the Renaissance. Governments were mostly constrained by peasant revolts which were widespread and caused massive change in Europe from the 14th to the 16th centuries. By 1519 England had had a Parliament and the Magna Carta for centuries. Peasant revolts had occurred in England, France, and Spain and drastically affected the destinies of the rulers there. In Spain the Moors were defeated by what was, essentially, a nationalist peasant revolt. On the other hand these revolts with some exceptions were generally quashed rather easily but no leader could afford to have a war the people did not support.
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Where did he go?

by SimSimon got smoked Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2002 at 12:33 AM

I wonder where he got to .. looks like he just got royally blasted
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Simple

by Simple Simon Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2002 at 10:28 AM

The Magna Carta was forced upon King John in 1215. Two hundred years later, Henry V was imposing his will on a freshly defeated France, having invaded that country on the flimsiest of pretexts. The idea that the average Englishman understood the legalisms in question which justified the war is silly. It is much more likely that the rabble were told that they were at war with France again, and they had better get used to it. Later, Louis XIV did as he would without the slightest concern of his subjects or even his nobles.

The reason that the Spanish crown opposed Cortes' conquest of the Aztecs stemmed from a rivalry between Cortes and Diego Velazquez, the royal Governor of Cuba. Since Velzquez was a favorite of the King and Queen, they took his side in the argument. Once Cortes' conquest was a fait accompli, they quickly changed horses. The decision to initially oppose the conquest and then later to embrace it had nothing to do with popular opinion or morality. It had everything to do with politics and the soverign's will.

Just because a document like the Magna Carta exists doesn't mean that it is adhered to. For centuries the Kings of England would obey or flout the provisions of the Magna Carta as suited their whims.

And I think it is important to remember why we walked down this convoluted tangent in the first place. Someone above denied that the Aztecs practiced human sacrifice and claimed that the fiction of this practice was floated for public consumption in Spain to justify the conquest. My contention was then, and is now that:

1. The Aztecs did practice human sacrifice.
2. The conquest occurred without the slightest concern of popular opinion.

I freely admit that I was off base with my dates concerning protestantism (damn that was hard to type), but my argument that popular opinion was not a factor in the conquest stands.
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...........

by .......... Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2002 at 1:19 PM

How could popular opinion have influenced the Conquest when they had no idea it was occurring until after the fact?

As for the English in France - there was plenty of demonization ahead of time in order to whip up racism amongst the English towards the French. Without it, the war would have hardly been succesful since the English forces were made up of a new military concept, the highly-trained common man with a longbow (who decisively defeated the French fighting nobleman in just about every engagement).
The will of the people to go to war was *essential* in that particular conflict, like no other.
In any case, the legalities *were* generally understood by the common people. Disputes over the inheiritance to any throne always made great gossip among the common people, a subject of great interest in the pubs.
Phillip the Fair, King of France, had had 3 sons, each of whom ruled in turn. None of them fathered a son themselves. The crown passed to a 1st cousin of the 3 sons (Phillip of Valois) - but it was contested by King Edward III of England as his mother had been a daughter of the original Phillip the Fair (making him grandson) and in more direct lineage. The only legality was that under French law, claims to the throne could not be passed through a woman (Salic Law) and you're right - the English commoner did not understand this legality, which is exactly why they went to war in support of their king.

As for the Magna Carta it was rarely violated - in fact, never. The reason for this was that the provisions of the Magna Carta happened to benefit mostly the nobilitiy who, in an age of decentralized military power, held quite a bit of influence.

Now I don't know why our friend above would claim Aztec sacrifice had never existed when it is plainly clear that it had. At that time, I can't think of anyone in the world who wasn't killing people in full public dispaly, whether by ripping out their hearts or tying them to a stake and burning them alive. Thank God most Western countries with the exception of the USA have given up this practice. And no, there was no need to float the idea to the general public since by the time they had heard the term "Aztec" (which, by the way, is not what the Tenocha / Mexica called themselves) the Conquest was already over.
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There's No Debate

by Tecpatl Sunday, Feb. 05, 2006 at 5:33 AM

Europeans were still in the midst of the Inquisitions when they arrived in this hemisphere.

In the Inquisitions they slaughtered more than 11 million of their own people (call it target practice for what they did to us ten times over later).

But No One says "LOOK AT THEM THERE EURO CANNIBAL WITCH BURNING SAVAGE CRAZIES!!! CAN YOU buhleeeve it??!! One of 'em's wearing a CROSS!!!!

Damn savage goons."

No one sez " NAW Jethro, they're problee not REAL Christian priests or even real Christians - they problee jes like dressin UP like that!"

no, no one sez that.

One reason they don't say it is that the dominant "race" - like the powerful everywhere, have impunity.

All the rest is academic.

The point is that racists can't resist making others into "savages" to "justify" their racism.

That's what this whole debate is about.
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That may be true

by fresca Sunday, Feb. 05, 2006 at 8:53 AM

However in some cases, it holds water.

What the Europeans did to the native Americans was awful. It was natural and inevitable but awful.

But, the atrocities of the "whate man" don't make his victims any less savage.

The natives were savage. They hadn't even reached the Bronze Age nor did they have the wheel.

just pointing that out.
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"Natural and Inevitable"

by Tecpatl Sunday, Feb. 05, 2006 at 1:58 PM

There it is - is the mark of impunity.

Euro savagery and genocide is "Natural and inevitable."


by the way,

I hate to tell you this - but virtually nothing in European "civilization" comes from Europe. It is virtually all borrowed from the Mediterranean.

Without the Muslims, Europe had no higher math at all, no philosophy, etc.

Our peoples had the most advanced math, had invented the zero - a hell of a lot more demanding intellectual challenge than the wheel - which was unusable in the mountainous terrain of the Mexican and Incan civilizations (and used only for children's toys as a consequence.)

Europe killed 11 million of its own people, 100 million Native Americans, another 100 million Africans (between the Middle Passage and the later conquest of Africa) 2 million to 4 million Viet Namese, over a million Iraqis, invented chattel slavery, invented genocide, invented and USED nuclear weapons, and are commiting ecocide - which is to say global suicide as we speak....

And these shameless creeps on this thread want to claim some kind of moral or cultural superiority for Euro-American "civilization."

It's enough to make you utterly sick.
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Natural and inevitable?

by johnk Sunday, Feb. 05, 2006 at 3:29 PM

Please. That is bull.

Advanced war technology doesn't just happen. People have to consciously create it, and then consciously use it against other people. Genocide and mass destruction are always willed acts.

(Also, that "wheel" argument is absurd. The Aztecs had cities and empires. They were "civilized" -- as much as all empires that murder others are "civilized.")
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Islam is Fu__ed Up big time.

by Professor Chumpsky Sunday, Feb. 05, 2006 at 4:20 PM

If you are living under the delusion that Islam has anything on the ball go here and then report back to us:

http://www.islamonline.com/cgi-bin/news_service/fatwah.asp
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Uh, yeah...

by fresca Sunday, Feb. 05, 2006 at 6:35 PM

" Without the Muslims, Europe had no higher math at all, no philosophy, etc.

Our peoples had the most advanced math, had invented the zero - a hell of a lot more demanding intellectual challenge than the wheel - which was unusable in the mountainous terrain of the Mexican and Incan civilizations (and used only for children's toys as a consequence.)

Europe killed 11 million of its own people, 100 million Native Americans, another 100 million Africans (between the Middle Passage and the later conquest of Africa) 2 million to 4 million Viet Namese, over a million Iraqis, invented chattel slavery, invented genocide, invented and USED nuclear weapons, and are commiting ecocide - which is to say global suicide as we speak...."


I think you're a bit off in your assessment of European history. And for the record, I'm hardly defending Europeans here.

First of all, who are "your people" you speak of. If it's Incas and Aztecs, that's one thing. If it's native Americans, well then, with all due, respect, you can save your breath trying to ring up the advances you've made. They're pretty much nil.

The conquest of the Native Americans was completely inevitable. The Europeans weren't just going to sit and wait on the East Coast for the indians to evolveinto worthy opponents. Once these people found land, bloddy human nature (the same human nature that propels EVERY group throughout history...even the noble indians) to slaughter and take.

Nothing was going to stop that ugly force.

And as far as islam being more advanced than europeans at some point, you may be right. It's debatable but maybe you're right. They certainly petered out pretty quick and have done a fine job of renouncing and forgetting any advances they might have made.

Now, my favorite point is the number of dead you attribute to "europeans". Virtually everyone who's ever died, it seems.

A million Iraqis? Are you fucking nuts? Invented slavery? Hardly. Killed 100 million Africans? fanatasy.

Face it, human history is the history of violence. It's the only thing EVERY group has in common.

So you fiqured out the concept of zero heh? And you were SO CLOSE to the wheel.

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Human history

by Hi! Sunday, Feb. 05, 2006 at 8:41 PM

"Face it, human history is the history of violence. It's the only thing EVERY group has in common. "
Commonly, the perceptions subjectively held, frame everyone's world view.
In other, words, violence is fine because its always been here. (?)
And to think we can't even cure homicidal and megalomania with all this new fangled medicine and surgery we are supposed to have developed in this brave new world. Fresca's world.
Isn't this the one who is calling everyone crazy?
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Nope

by fresca Sunday, Feb. 05, 2006 at 8:52 PM

" In other, words, violence is fine because its always been here. (?) "

You're the first one to say that.

Not me.

I'm just pointing out that violence is to be expected from humans.

At the end of the day, none of us are really worth a damn.
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I feel bad

by Hi! Sunday, Feb. 05, 2006 at 9:21 PM

what is this
"At the end of the day, none of us are really worth a damn."
That's exactly what I mean about subjective perception.

This is what is wrong with you.
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ZERO

by Tecpatl Monday, Feb. 06, 2006 at 2:56 AM

Mexican civlization had the concept of zero by 400 BC.

The Muslim world had it by 900 AD.

Europe had it by 1100 AD -

- fifteen hundred years after Mexicans developed the concept.

The concept of zero is far more abstract and advanced than the wheel. We had the wheel, just no use for it.

You on the other hand, weren't even close to the concept of the Zero.

Fresca wrote:

"So you fiqured out the concept of zero heh? And you were SO CLOSE to the wheel."

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Human Nature

by Tecpatl Monday, Feb. 06, 2006 at 3:00 AM

It serves the criminal to claim his or her crime is just "human nature."

The fact is that history and "civilization" adds up to only the tiniest fraction of human experience.

You say human nature is "savage."

What you mean is that _your_ savagery is excusable and that the savagery of the "Other" is an excuse for you to enslave them, destroy their culture, take their land, and commit physical and cultural genocide against them.

Your is a criminal's excuse and outlook.

Fresca wrote:

The conquest of the Native Americans was completely inevitable. The Europeans weren't just going to sit and wait on the East Coast for the indians to evolveinto worthy opponents. Once these people found land, bloddy human nature (the same human nature that propels EVERY group throughout history...even the noble indians) to slaughter and take.

Nothing was going to stop that ugly force.
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OUR ANCESTRAL DEAD

by Tecpatl Monday, Feb. 06, 2006 at 3:08 AM

Fresca wrote: "Now, my favorite point is the number of dead you attribute to "europeans". Virtually everyone who's ever died, it seems."

FROM AMERICAN HOLOCAUST by David Stannard, Oxford University Press:

p81
Bartoleme de Las Casas
By other massacres and murders besides the above, they have destroyed and devastated a kingdom more than a hundred leagues square, one of the hap- | piest in the way of fertility and population in the world. This same tyrant wrote that it was more populous than the kingdom of Mexico; and he told the truth. He and his brothers, together with the others, have killed more than four or five million peopIe in fifteen or sixteen years, from the year 1525 until 1540, and they continue to kill and destroy those who are still left; and so they will kill the remainder."
***
p85
... overall in central Mexico the population fell by almost 95 percent within seventy-five years following the Europeans' first appearance - from more than 25,000,000 people in 1519 to barely 1,300,000 in 1595.
***
In northern Mexico, over a somewhat longer period, the native population fell from more than 2,500,000 to less than 320,000. Wherever the invaders went, the pattern was the same. On the island of Cozumel, off the eastern coast of Mexico, more than 96 percent of the population had been destroyed less than 70 years after the Spaniards' first arrival. In tbe Cuchumatan Highlands of Guatemala the population feII by 82 percent within the first half-century following European contact, and by 94 percent - from 260,000 to 16,000 - in less than a century and a half. In western Nicaragua 99 percent of the people were dead (falling in number from more than 1,000,000 to less than 10,000) before sixty years had passed from the time of the Spaniards' initial appearance. In western and central Honduras 95 percent of the people were exterminated in half a century. In Cordoba, near the Gulf of Mexico, 97 percent of the population was extinguished in little more than a century, while simultaneously, in neighboring Jalapa, the same lethal pattern held: 97 percent of the Jalapa population was destroyed- falling from 180,000 people in -1520 to 5000 in 1626. With dreary regularity, in countless other locales across the length and breadth of Mexico and down into Central America, the European intrusion meant the sudden and near total disappearance of populations that had lived and flourished there for thousands upon thousands of years.
***
Peru and Chile, home of the Incas and one of the wealthiest and largest empires anywhere, covering virtually the entire western coast of the South American continent, had contained at least 9,000,000 people only a few years before the Europeans arrived, possibly as many as 14,000,000 or more. As elsewhere, the conquistadors' diseases preceded them-smallpox, and probably other epidemics swept down through Mexico and across the Andes in the early 1520s, even before Pizarro's first foray into the region- but also as elsewhere the soldiers and settlers who followed wreaked terrible havoc and destruction themselves. Long before the close of the century, barely 1,000,000 Peruvians remained alive. A few years more and that fragment was halved again. At least 94 percent of the population was gone-somewhere between 8,500.000 and 13,500.000 people had been destroyed.
Here, as in the Caribbean and Mexico and Central America, one could fill volumes with reports of murderous European cruelties, reports derived -from the Europeans' own writings. As in those other locaTes, Indians were flogged, hanged, drowned, dismembered, and set upon by dogs of war as the Spanish and others demanded more gold and silver than the natives were able to supply. One ingenious European technique for getting what they wanted involved burying Indian leaders in earth up to their waists after they had given the Spanish all the goods that they possessed. In that helpless position they then were beaten with whips and ordered to reveal the whereabouts of the rest of their treasure. When they could not comply, because they had no more valuable possessions, more earth was piled about them and the whippings were continued. Then more earth. And more beating. At last, says the Spanish informant on this particular matter, "they covered them to the shoulders and finally to the mouths." He then adds as an afterthought: "I even believe that a great number of natives were burned to death."
Pedro de Cieza de Leon, in what is justly regarded as the best firsthand account of the conquest of the Incas, describes in page after page the beautiful valleys and fields of this part of the world, the marvelous cities, the kind and generous native people-and the wholesale slaughter of them by the Spanish "as though a fire had gone, destroying everything in its path." Cieza de Leon was himself a conquistador, a man who believed in the right of the Spaniards to seize Indians and set them to forced labor, but only, he wrote, "when it is done in moderation." He explains:
I would not condemn the employment of Indian carriers ... but if a man had need of one pig, he killed twenty; if four Indians were wanted, he took a dozen . . . and there were many Spaniards who made the poor Indians carry their whores in hammocks borne on their shoulders. Were one ordered to enumerate the great evils, injuries, robberies, oppression, and ill treatment inflicted on the natives during these operations . . . there would be no end of it... for they thought no more of killing Indians than if they were useless beasts.
***
p85
... overall in central Mexico the population fell by almost 95 percent within seventy-five years following the Europeans' first appearance - from more than 25,000,000 people in 1519 to barely 1,300,000 in 1595.
***
p91
For the Andean society as a whole ... within a century following their first encounter with the Spanish, 94-96 percent of their once-enormous population had been exterminated; along their 2000 miles of coastline, where once 6,500,000 people had lived, everyone was dead.
***
p95
By the time the sixteenth century had ended perhaps 200,000 Spaniards had moved their lives to the Indies, to Mexico, to Central America, and points further to the south. In contrast, by that time, somewhere between 60,000,000 and 80,000,000 natives from those lands were dead.

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Death Tolls

by Tecpatl Monday, Feb. 06, 2006 at 4:23 AM

Fresca wrote: "A million Iraqis? Are you fucking nuts? Invented slavery? Hardly. Killed 100 million Africans? fanatasy. "

Iraq:

from http://www.crosscurrents.org/gordon.htm

The most reliable estimate holds that 237,000 Iraqi children under five are dead as a result of sanctions, with other estimates going as high as one million.(2) The deaths from sanctions are far greater than the number of Iraqis directly killed in the Persian Gulf War -- an estimated 40,000 casualties, both military and civilian.(3) But the sanctions are shocking not only because of the extent of the human damage, but also because the suffering has been borne primarily by women, children, the elderly, the sick, and the poor; the state and the wealthy classes seem to be inconvenienced, but are otherwise exempt from extreme hardship.

Middle Passage:

In American Holocaust (1992), David Stannard estimates that some 30 to 60 million Africans died being enslaved. He notes a 50% mortality rate among new slaves while being gathered and stored in Africa, a 10% mortality among the survivors while crossing the ocean, and another 50% mortality rate in the first "seasoning" phase of slave labor. Overall, he estimates a 75-80% mortality rate in transit.

African Conquest: Take a look at the Congo alone:

From: King Leopold's Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror, and Heroism in Colonial Africa by Adam Hochschild

Between 1880 and 1920, the population of the Congo was slashed in half: some ten million people were victims of murder, starvation, exhaustion, exposure, disease and a plummeting birth rate... The death toll in King Leopold’s Congo was on a scale comparable to the Holocaust and Stalin’s purges.


Chattel Slavery:

Existed nowhere on Earth and at no time until its invention by Europeans. If you don't understand the difference between chattle slavery and other forms of slavery, look it up.


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Islam and Europe

by johnk Monday, Feb. 06, 2006 at 6:03 AM

It's not "debatable" that at one time, the Islamic world was more "advanced" than the European world, at least by contemporary standards. During the Middle Ages, the Islamic world was the repository of classical culture. Europe gained access to this information via conquest of Moslem territories.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Middle_Ages

The whole zero issue... I suspect that any culture that has extensive trade and some kind of money eventually discovers zero and negative numbers. So it's no wonder the Aztecs and Arabs had it before the Europeans. Zero isn't that relevant if you're dealing in land, inventory of goods, and barter.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aztecs

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_Golden_Age

Here's something about Aztec culture that doesn't sit well with me. Their legal drinking age was 60 years old, and being busted for drunkeness twice was death. That would put a damper on Cinco de Mayo.

>Although one could drink pulque, a fermented beverage with an alcoholic content equivalent to beer, getting drunk before the age of 60 was forbidden. While the first time was punished, reincidents could get the penalty of death.
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More re Zero

by Tecpatl Monday, Feb. 06, 2006 at 3:28 PM

Thanks for your thoughtful comments, JohnK.

I believe the dvelopment of the concept of Zero in Mexico occurred first with the Maya, whose concern was astronomy and related to the Meso-American calendar systems.

The Maya were among the world's most advanced mathemeticians, and I don't think that the developemnt ot the concept of Zero can reduce to a concern with trade and accounting.

Respectfully,

Tecpatl
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That's trippy

by johnk Monday, Feb. 06, 2006 at 4:22 PM

Thanks for the information. I just read up on the topic here:

http://www.civilization.ca/civil/maya/mmc05eng.html

Man, the stuff you learn here.

With the discussion of violence, you all might like to read this funny spoof from The Onion:

http://www.theonion.com/content/node/45026
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More trips

by johnk Monday, Feb. 06, 2006 at 4:35 PM

I found this interesting article about kids studying and re-developeing the Maya base 20 numbering system.

Didn't they once call this kind of study "New Math"?
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