SOUTHEAST ASIA AND THE PACIFIC
THE SOUTH SEAS: ORGANIZING PARADISE INTO EMPIRES
In the late 1700s, Captain Cook explored the Pacific with
instruments for accurately marking locations.
Before that, explorers discovered islands quite by
accident and could
rarely ever find the same island again.
those tiny specks range across an area larger than any continent.
So far apart, the society of each island developed
A glimpse at the history of five particular islands gives
an idea of that
Historians are just beginning to discover the rich history
Island. They now
history into three periods. During
the first period (about 400 A.D. to about 1100), people worshiped the
They built huge walls, temples, and an astronomical
precisely measured and aligned with the movements of the sun.
This sounds much like what was happening in Peru at the
And indeed, the Easter Islanders were a mixture of
Polynesians and "long-eared" South Americans.
The second period (1100 to about 1700) shows much sloppier
Instead, people concentrated on marking their graves with more than six
stone statues ten to thirty-five feet tall.
Wooden tablets with hieroglyphic writing have also
survived from this
historians think the
islanders copied these signs from the earlier period without
But the amazing fact is that no one else in the Pacific or
had any form of writing.
Shortly before 1700, the "short-eared" people very
revolted against the ruling "long-eared" people.
They drove most of them into a ditch and set fire to the
They tipped over all of the statues except a few which the
had buried up to the neck. European
explorers found the natives living in crude grass huts.
Until recently, people thought that the half-buried
statues were only
About 1800, King Pomare II of Tahiti became Christian so
missionaries would give him guns to fight his tribal wars.
His daughter, Queen Pomare IV was such a good Protestant
that when two
French Catholic missionaries came sneaking into her country, she threw
them out. A French
battleship came roaring back to settle the problem.
Queen Pomare appealed to England for help.
But the chiefs voted to make Tahiti a possession of France.
The French commander removed the queen from power.
England protested, and the French government eventually
gave her back her
title--but not her power. Shortly
after she died, her son had to give up even the title of king.
Tahiti had become a part of the French empire.
Throughout the Pacific, England and France raced to grab
up islands for
their empires. Germany,
the United States, and Japan entered the race late.
Germany bought part of the crumbling Spanish empire.
The United States grabbed the rest during the
But to Europeans and Americans, Tahiti remained the symbol
writers such as
Herman Melville and Robert Louis Stevenson spent time there.
And the painter, Paul Gauguin, lived in Tahiti for years,
unspoiled island life.
The natives of Fiji were fierce and proud.
They refused to be beaten down by the British, and they
refused to sell
their land--though they would rent it out.
As a result, Fijian natives still own eighty percent of
They are the landlords,
The Fijians refused to work on the sugar cane plantations
built by the
English. So the
English brought in
thousands of Hindu and Islamic workers from India.
Today, half the population of Fiji is Indian.
The Indians worked hard.
of them created prosperous little farms--though they must always rent
from the Fijians. This
has caused some racial tensions.
In 1970, Fiji became an independent nation.
Thirty years later, when a man of Indian descent became
president, a few
native Fijians took him prisoner.
native chiefs then overturned the constitution which guaranteed
equality for all
About 1850, one tribal leader defeated all the other
warring chiefs and
called himself King George I of Tonga.
son, George II, saw other islands swept up into foreign empires.
So in 1900 he suggested a treaty of partnership with
As a result, Tonga was the only island in the whole
Pacific to keep its
freedom during the colonial scramble.
George II's daughter, Queen Salote, ruled for forty-three
She brought free medical care and free education to her
They loved their friendly queen--all six-feet-three-inches
hundred eighty pounds of her. She
brought Tonga to world attention when, with queenly dignity, she rode
carriage through the cold London rain at the coronation of Elizabeth II
After all, she was the only person in the whole British
empire who could
address the new young queen as an equal.
In 1789, the sailors on H.M.S. Bounty mutinied against the
Captain Bligh. They
set him adrift, and the tough captain traveled four
thousand miles in a rowboat until he reached land.
He later became a governor in Australia, where his
mutinied against his harshness.
Nineteen years later a ship discovered Pitcairn Island.
On it lived one old Englishmen, a few Polynesian women,
children. The man
explained that he
was the last of the Bounty mutineers, They had come to this uninhabited
bringing Polynesian men and women with them, But there were not enough
the men got into a fight. Only
survived, Some descendants of the Bounty mutineers still live on
Island--where there are only five family names.
THE EIGHT KINGS OF HAWAII
For centuries, the Hawaiian Islands formed four separate
About 1800, King Kamehameha I (kah-MAY-hah-MAY-hah) united
into one large kingdom, and the history of the Hawaiian nation began.
It is probably not important to remember these names--just
flavor of Hawaiian history:
I stood seven feet tall. The
old warrior built up a well-armed navy, established conservation
enforced strict laws to wipe out crime.
his firm fairness, he had his oldest son executed for breaking the law.
II was a weakling and his father knew it. So
the old king had set up his favorite queen as the real power.
For the next twenty-five years, women governed Hawaii
They led the way in social reform against the old
religion, Later, they
led their people into Christianity.
young king went to visit England, where he died of smallpox.
III was the baby brother of the last king.
He grew up to become the great lawgiver of the Hawaiian
In 1840, he granted a constitution patterned after that of
States, with the king as a constitutional executive branch of the
When England and France both tried to seize the kingdom,
States recognized Hawaiian independence.
the king lay dying, he tried to save his country from becoming a colony
applying for statehood in the United States.
The papers had all the necessary signatures except for the
and heir--who hid and waited for his own chance to rule.
IV was a dashing young man who loved everything English.
He and his wife set the
pattern for proper Victorian behavior
in the Pacific. Then
having mental depressions and temper tantrums.
He offered to resign, but the people urged him to stay on.
He held himself responsible for his little son's
accidental death, and he
died brokenhearted soon after.
V was his fat no-nonsense brother, He threw out the constitution and
rather well by himself. He
hard and stubbornly, This bachelor king died unexpectedly, without
should be the next king. So
people got a chance to vote between the democratic Lunalilo
the dictatorial Kalakaua (kah-LAH-KAH-oo-ah).
Kalakaua did not believe in elections, so he urged his
boycott. As a
result, most of the
votes cast were for Lunalilo,
astounded everyone by refusing to be carried to his coronation. He walked.
when the bass drummer collapsed, King Lunalilo joined the band and
bass drum in his own coronation parade.
dismissed the palace guard, and turned their quarters over to the
National Band. Already
he was dying
of tuberculosis. But
he refused to
name an heir, saying the people should have a chance to vote. He asked to be buried in a
little churchyard rather than in
the royal tombs.
won election this time by changing it to a vote of just the
then getting the legislators drunk before they voted.
The jolly king brought his corrupt cronies into the
government. In time
he became more
and more dictatorial. Finally
people rose up and forced the king to sign a constitution which took
of his powers. He
is remembered as
the first king to circle the world, visit the United States, or record
on a phonograph. He
also wrote the
Hawaiian national anthem.
LILIUOKALANI (lee-LEE-oo-oh-kah-LAH-nee) tried to straighten out the
of her brother. She
was a good
woman who had done much social work and had written songs, including Aloha
But American businessmen in Hawaii did not want her to
take away the
special privileges they had enjoyed in the days of corruption.
They stirred up a quick revolt, and the president of Dole
Company became also the president of Hawaii.
The new leaders applied for American statehood, but
started an investigation and called for giving the country back to
happened and the statehood question dragged on for
more than sixty years before being settled.
AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINES: THE BIGGEST MANHUNT IN HISTORY
Australia is the attic of biology.
primitive forms of life--such as the platypus, the kangaroo, the
died out everywhere in the world except Australia.
There these gentle vegetarian animals have lived on
disturbed. (By the
European explorers saw their first kangaroos, they excitedly asked
guide what that animal was called.
puzzled native said "Kan ga roo," which means "I don't
Just as the more primitive forms of animals died out, the
of people died out everywhere except Australia.
The closest known relatives of the black Australian
aborigines were the
black people who started civilization in India 4500 years ago.
But Australia had no farm animals, and was mostly desert.
So the gentle aborigines lived as wandering hunters.
Two different groups had come to Australia.
The earliest, gentlest group got pushed off Australia to
the island of
Tasmania offers a good case study of how European
colonists treated the
native people. Tasmania
is a large island almost the size of South Carolina.
England used Tasmania and the rest of Australia as a place
unwanted criminals. These
terrorized the wilderness. Settlers
came too. The first
in Tasmania in 1803. A
later a herd of kangaroos came leaping past, with about three hundred
women, and children trying to catch the animals.
The white settlers panicked and shot more than fifty black
people who had
never seen a white person before.
The atrocities had only begun.
used aborigines for target practice.
captured them for slaves. Settlers
gave them gifts of poisoned flour and poisoned liquor.
It was widely said that some white men shot aborigines to
feed to their
Finally, in desperate frustration the natives began
fighting back as well
as they could with wooden spears.
in 1830, the governor organized the biggest manhunt in history.
Nearly five thousand soldiers and settlers lined up just
135 feet (__
meters) apart in a line that stretched halfway across
Tasmania. Then they
southward, beating the bushes. After
three months, they neared the sea and began to close in on their
But when they got down to the shore, not a single native
Every one of them had slipped through the line--except one
child they had caught sleeping. Thus
the biggest manhunt in history cost about $100,000, and captured two
After more attempted massacres that failed, a Methodist
offered to bring in the aborigines peacefully.
He and a native woman named Truganina (
) talked them into surrendering.
the original five thousand aborigines, they found only 203 still living.
These rapidly died in captivity.
was the last to die in 1876. She
had been born the year the first white settlers arrived in Tasmania.
In her lifetime, her whole race disappeared.
On the Australian continent, many aborigines still live.
The seven colonies of Australia united into a single
nation in 1901.
In neighboring New Zealand, the natives were Polynesian,
and fought back more successfully.
their numbers are increasing once again.
Zealand became a nation in 1907.
Yet New Zealand farmers plowed up evidence of an earlier
eggshells and bones of giant birds nearly twice as tall as a man.
The first Polynesians had reached New Zealand around 900
They hunted. They
cut down trees. By
1600, half of the species on the islands had become extinct.
Even primitive people could do great damage to nature.
JAPAN BECOMES A WESTERN POWER IN A HURRY
For centuries, Japan copied China.
in the 1600s, Christian missionaries landed in Japan and began meddling
Japanese politics. A
strongman, called the shogun, seized power and chased the Christians
He closed Japan to all Westerners.
the next two-and-a-half centuries, his descendants ruled as shoguns and
continued his isolation policy.
Then in the 1850s, American battleships appeared in the
harbor, with the
demand that Japan open to American businessmen.
The shogun gave in. Then
England, France, and the Netherlands all demanded a part of Japanese
Japanese leaders saw the very real danger that Japan would
colony in one of the Western empires.
keep this from happening they started a crash program to make Japan as
any Western power. This
could not copy China, for the Western powers were already carving out
themselves along the Chinese coast.
had to use Western methods, and use them fast,
First step was to get rid of the shogun with his
After some persuasion, the shogun resigned in 1867.
Once more, the emperor became the real power in Japan.
This change is called the Meiji (MAY-jee) restoration, and
the new young
emperor became known as the Meiji emperor.
He was an active man, and he chose talented officials.
They brought in Western
and built factories. Japanese
industry boomed. In
twenty-five years, Japan leaped from feudalism to modern industrial
process which had taken four hundred years in the West.
No other nation in history made such a rapid change.
Japanese industry ran into the same problems as Western
needed manpower and resources. China
had manpower going to waste, and the Dutch East Indies had plenty of
Japanese leaders began wondering if they had grown strong
enough yet to
carve out their own little economic empire.
They saw that England was about to take Korea away from
Japan moved first, and took Korea in a quick war against
China in 1894.
England and Russia protested so much that Japan had to let
in ruling Korea. But
Russians wormed themselves into more and more control, Japan declared
war on the
Russians in 1904 and beat them. And
the Japanese gained much more during World War I: they grabbed up all
Pacific islands which had belonged to Germany.
The grandson of the Meiji emperor did not rule as
forcefully as his
grandfather and father had. Junior
army officers began making important government decisions.
When Russia and China quarreled over which should control
Japanese army seized the area in 1931.
Japanese government had to go along with the army's decision. Soon the Japanese military
moved south, capturing the entire
Chinese coast. Then
World War II
started in Europe. Germany
the Netherlands. It
this might be the ideal time for Japan to take the Dutch East Indies
belonged to the Netherlands. But
the American colony of the Philippines and the English colonies of
blocked the way. Furthermore,
American navy patrolled these waters.
In the frenzy of World War II, some people feared
that Japan planned to invade Australia or India or the
United States. Looking
back now, it appears that Japan had limited ambitions
to be carried out in a three-step plan :
Knock out the American and British forces which blocked
the Dutch East Indies.
Convince the Chinese people to join in an Asian empire.
proceeded according to plan. But
the United States was new at the business of empire.
Older powers had grown used to losing a corner of their
once in a while. But
people mistook an attack on the American navy as an attack on America,
So the United States declared War on Japan--a war which
The Japanese army quickly occupied most of Southeast Asia
and the nearby
islands of the Pacific. It
important to remember that, except for divided China and neutral
of those areas stood free. They
belonged to somebody else's empire.
Japanese succeeded with the help of the local people, who felt glad to
of their Western masters. In
final losing days of the war, Japan repaid these local supporters in
The Japanese army pulled back so fast that the local people had time to
up all the guns and ammunition and hide them before the American army
After the explosion of the first two atomic bombs, the
surrendered--on condition they be allowed to keep their emperor.
(For further details on World War II, see Volume II,
THREE COLONIES BECOME ISLAND NATIONS
In World War II, Japan overran the colonies of four
nations: the United
States (Philippines), England (Malaya), Holland (Dutch East Indies),
movements already flourished in all four
colonies; local people welcomed the Japanese liberators.
After Japan lost the war, people in the colonies did not
feel eager to
have their Western masters back. Recognizing
this, the United States and England returned just long enough to turn
over officially to the local leaders.
and France put up a losing fight, trying to reconquer their lost lands.
chapter deals with the three island colonies; for the French struggle
mainland, see Unit IV, Chapter 8.)
Spain had taken over the Philippines back in the 1500s.
The islands became Spanish-speaking and Catholic.
But by the late 1800s, the Filipinos began agitating for
led by the famous writer, Jose Rizal (ho-SAY ree-SAHL)-who was
of mixed blood,
mostly Chinese. When
government executed Rizal, the Filipinos rose up in fury.
They declared their independence from Spain in 1898, and
This was the year of the Spanish-American War, so the
Americans and the
Filipinos worked together in driving Spain out of the islands.
But at the peace conference, the United States bought the
from Spain for twenty million dollars.
Americans had entered the colony business, and had no intention of
felt betrayed. They
declared war on
the United States, and tried to drive their new masters out of the
By 1902, the American army crushed the Philippine
Republic, and the
United States ruled.
During the Great Depression, American business leaders
could not compete
with low-priced Filipino goods. To
get Philippine products off the American market, they persuaded
grant independence to the islands.
bill passed, and the islands were scheduled for gradual independence,
completed by 1946. World
interrupted the schedule, but the American government decided to keep
promise, and granted the Philippines their independence on the
Democracy worked for twenty years.
a dictator took over for the next twenty years.
He felt so confident that he sometimes scheduled elections. One time, he had soldiers
kill his opponent.
In the next election, the dead man's widow, Corazon Aquino
decided to run. The
housewife won, but the dictator lied about the election results.
People hung yellow ribbons everywhere to show their
disgust with the
army leaders said
that Mrs. Aquino was the real president.
the dictator tried to arrest them, Aquino called for a demonstration of
"people power." Thousands
and thousands of people jammed the streets to protect the military.
Other officers refused to obey the dictator's orders, and
he had to leave
the country. This
was in 1986.
Three years later, Aquino's example of "people power"
citizens all across eastern Europe to throw out their Communist
(See unit 4. chapter _.)
Indonesia has changed hands many times.
It once formed part of the civilization of India.
Then Arab traders converted the islanders to Islam.
In fact, nearly a quarter of the world's Muslims today
live in Indonesia.
took over next.
Spain swallowed up Portugal.
the Netherlands broke free from Spain in the 1600s, they took with them
Portugese colonies of South Africa and the East Indies.
When Napoleon took control of the Netherlands around 1800,
that as an excuse to grab the Dutch colonies.
The English later gave the East Indies back to
Holland--but kept South
By the twentieth century, an independence movement had
sprung up--led by
a young dentist named Dr. Sukarno (soo-KAR-no).
The Japanese drove the Dutch out of the islands.
As soon as Japan lost the war in 1945, Sukarno declared
independence, The Dutch decided to fight--and lost.
They recognized the Republic of Indonesia in 1949.
President Sukarno kept close ties with Communist China.
But the Indonesian Communists became over-eager, and
army put down the
Communists--and removed Sukarno from power.
When the English had to pull out of the East Indies in the
they just moved north onto the mainland and took over the eleven Muslim
sultanates of Malaya. Later,
England also got control over a few areas which had
formed part of the East Indies. The
largest of these island possessions was Sarawak, which has an
history all its own:
Around 1840, the local ruler of the island of Borneo
feared that a
revolution was brewing. So
James Brooke, an English mercenary soldier who specialized in fighting
Brooke put down the revolution, and the grateful leader
gave him Sarawak,
a stretch of land as big as England.
became the "White Rajah" of the independent nation of Sarawak--a
position later held by his nephew and grand-nephew.
In 1946, the third rajah gave Sarawak to England.
As the last big colonial power in Southeast Asia, the
English decided it
was time to get out. The
minority urged them to stay, because they feared the Muslim majority.
But England lumped all of its possessions into a new
Malaysia. It has a
strange form of
government: the sultans of the various states meet each five years to
monarch for the nation.
The city of Singapore--with its Chinese population--soon
pulled out of
the Malaysian nation. President
Sukarno of Indonesia declared war because he felt that the island areas
Malaysia rightfully should be a part of his nation.
After Sukarno fell from power, Indonesia declared peace.
All three former colonies then stood as free and stable
HOW A RELIGION IS BORN
After World War II, a new religion sprang up in the south
Indonesia across to Fiji. The
people on these scattered islands had no contact with each other; their
religion had no leader or organizer.
a lot of isolated people began interpreting things the same way at the
time. Thus, in
modern times we have the opportunity to observe the
natural way a religion develops. This
particular religion is known as the Cargo Cults.
Actually, the first Cargo Cult appeared around 1900.
It resulted from the gifts of the Christian missionaries,
who came with
their warning to prepare for the end of the world when "the first shall
last and the last shall be first."
prophets began to preach that the world would end in three days of
White people would turn black, and black people would turn
Then Great Pigs would come down from heaven, bringing
men's goods--for all those who had no cargo now.
Most people on the islands regarded these early prophets
Then in World War II, the cargo actually did arrive.
Great silver birds dropped out of the heavens, bringing
prefabricated houses, jobs, jeeps, money, prosperity.
People suddenly believed in the Cargo Cult.
But something was wrong: the planes landed only in the
villages, and left cargo only for the white men.
Anyone could see that the planes came down from the
And heaven was where the ancestors had always dwelt,
sending down gifts
of sunshine and rain. The
of the islanders had never known the white men.
Why should they send gifts to these strangers?
Obviously, the ancestors intended this cargo for their
the white men were intercepting the gifts through their magic, and
planes into their traps.
Some white leaders tried to explain that this cargo was
created by the
work of other white men in factories.
anyone in the islands could see that white men did not work; they just
tables and drew symbols on pieces of paper.
Maybe that was their magic secret.
islanders sat at tables drawing symbols on paper; but somehow they did
up with the right symbols. They
noticed that the white men sometimes wrote with a vase of flowers
sitting on the
desk, so they tried that too. Still
no cargo. Some
white men had U.S.A.
on their jackets, so they painted U.S.A. on their skins.
They tried wearing trousers and helmets.
They built runways, but the planes preferred to land on
white men's runways. Some
brave islanders crawled under the great silver birds, trying to figure
sex, but that didn't help. The
white men seemed to call the planes with their radio towers, so the
built towers of branches to call the planes to their runways. The white men built banks,
and the banks filled with money;
the natives built banks, but no money appeared in them.
The islanders probably would have gotten discouraged, but
they saw black
American soldiers who seemed to get as much of the cargo as the white
did. When officials
discourage the Cargo Cults, islanders decided that the white men were
trying to keep all of the cargo for themselves.
Two religious philosophies arose.
group said it was necessary to adopt more white ways.
They worshiped a white god named John Frumm.
(He may have been an American soldier--John from
America--who gave out
gum and cigarettes. Perhaps
back home and worked in a factory--never knowing he was a god.)
Thomas Beatty, an American work brigade leader, is now
remembered as a
lesser god called Tom Navy. The
cross of the foreign medical workers has become a religious emblem.
Some islanders asked Ruseful (Roosevelt), King of America,
to come visit
his bountifulness on the islands.
later they took up a collection to buy Lyndon Johnson.
Apparently, $2,000 was not enough.
The other group said that the ancestors ignored their
the descendants no longer paid proper respect to the ancestors.
This group revived many old tribal rituals, in hope of
pleasing the angry
have thrown off all
clothes, and once more enjoy sex in broad daylight for all to see
They must prepare themselves for the future paradise by
paradise that already existed before the missionaries spoiled it.
So the islanders wait.
have seen the proof; the cargo does exist.
They wait for that glorious day when they shall have
secret and the cargo shall be theirs.
GANDHI, WHO AWAKENED THE CONSCIENCE OF THE WORLD
In the mid-1800s, all of India became a colony of England.
The colony included nearly one-fifth of the world's people. Ninety years later, those
people had won their freedom from
England--mainly through the leadership of one person.
He was a little monkey-faced man named Mohandas K. Gandhi
He had studied law in England.
particularly studied Thoreau's teaching of civil disobedience and
teaching of love and simplicity. (See Volume II, Chapters 32 and 30.)
Gandhi practiced law in South Africa, where he
non-violent methods to gain rights for the Indian minority there.
During World War I, Gandhi returned to India, and tried to
non-violent domonstr4tions for independence.
But whenever the police attacked the crowd, the
realized that he had to do much more teaching of
self-discipline before people discovered the power of quiet courage in
walked from village
to village, dressed only in his loincloth, preaching simplicity, love,
self-purification through meditation, fasting, and careful diet.
He preached love for all people--even for the outcastes or
ended centuries of discrimination. (For an explanation of the caste
Volume I, Chapter 14.)
He taught a reform of all society, pointing out Seven
Politics without principle
Wealth without work
Commerce without morality
Pleasure without conscience
Education without character
Science without humanity
Worship without sacrifice
Gandhi took the spinning wheel as the symbol of his
Ratter than buy high-priced cloth from the English, he
to spend an hour each day spinning their own cloth--just as their great
ancestors had done. Years
when Gandhi had become a world-famous political leader, he still took
for his daily spinning.
In 1930, Gandhi led his most famous demonstration--which
conscience of people all around the world.
England charged the Indians a tax for salt.
Gandhi preached that it was wrong to pay taxes to a
government which did
wrong. So instead
of buying salt,
he led a march across India down to the sea, where the marchers made
salt--which was illegal. Gandhi
his followers went to jail many times.
jail, Gandhi would go on a hunger strike.
now, people all over the would watched anxiously.
They pressured their governments, and their governments
to not let Gandhi die. When
could not make him eat, the embarrassed British had to let him go.
Then he would lead more demonstrations, go to jail again,
and refuse to
eat again until he got freed.
This was a new kind of revolution--with truth as its only
weapon, And the
battle-ground lay not in India or in England--but in the individual
of people all over the world. And
it worked. By 1947,
the British had
been embarrassed enough, and they left.
But at the last moment, India split into Hindu and Muslim
scrambling to control more territory.
the next chapter.) Gandhi
hold his people together, preaching that love should bind them.
But people felt strong with victory.
They were in no mood for love now.
Hindu--a member of Gandhi's own religion--shot him.
The shock of Gandhi's death brought people to their senses.
The fighting stopped.
Gandhi's younger assistant, Nehru, led India for several
Later, Nehru's daughter, and then Nehru's grandson took
Both were assassinated.
the real ruler in the hearts of the Indian people remains the memory of
little old man whom they call "Mahatma" or "Great Spirit":
Rabindranath Tagore (rah-BEEN-drah-naht tah-GOR) was a
Hindu poet from
the India-Bangladesh region at the beginning of the twentieth century.
He also wrote stories, plays, and songs.
He received the Nobel Prize for literature.
In addition, he painted, and ran a school for the
development of all the
arts. Tagore and
Gandhi were the
two most respected men in India, but Tagore refused to get bogged down
freedom of the spirit. Here
is one of his poems:
GITANJALI by RABINDRANATH TAGORE
the mind is without fear and the head is held high;
knowledge in free;
the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow domestic
words come out from the depth of truth;
tireless striving stretches its arms towards perfection:
the clear stream of reason has not lost its way into the dreary desert
the mind is led forward by thee into ever-widening thought and action--
that heaven of freedom, my Father, let my country awake.
THE FRUITS OF DISSENSION: PAKISTAN AND BANGLADESH
It is a surprising fact that only a quarter of the world's
in the Arab countries. Another
quarter live scattered through Africa.
a third quarter dwell in the single island nation of Indonesia.
And the fourth quarter live in Pakistan and Bangladesh.
Until just recently, Pakistan and Bangladesh were parts of
But already by the year 1000, Muslim raiders had started
moving into the
area. They settled
mostly in the
two northern corners of India. and ruled as emperors. (See Volume I,
60.) Once the
battles for control
ended, Hindus and Muslims learned to live together peaceably.
When the British came to India, they found that the
Muslims of the north
made good fierce soldiers. The
Khyber Rifles (northwest corner) and the Bengal Lancers (northeast
became crack military units--the pride of the British colonial army.
The people in these two areas prospered.
Army clerks developed into a middle class.
When Gandhi gently drove the British out of India, many
Muslims of the
north had mixed feelings. They
learned to be soldiers and administrators; but in the new government of
India, they would only be a suspected minority.
Led by a lawyer named Mohammed Ali Jinnah (JIN-nah), they
the creation of a separate Muslim nation.
most religious leaders spoke against separation, for they saw that the
reasons were political ambitions--not any religious feeling.
But Jinnah won his campaign.
1947, England set up the two independent nations of India and Pakistan.
Pakistan lay in two halves--with India between them.
And the two halves had nothing in common, except religion.
West Pakistan was a sprawling land of desert and camels;
was a crowded little area of jungle and water buffalo and elephants. About the same number of
people lived in each half.
Right after independence, India and Pakistan went to war
western border. Both
committed atrocities on the minorities in their own lands.
Millions of refugees fled both ways to safety across the
This border dispute has broken into fighting several times
Jinnah and Gandhi both died in 1948.
Nehru held India together, but Pakistan split into feuding
After ten years of turmoil, a military man took control as
Political leaders went to jail, but discontent still grew. People of East Pakistan
complained that they paid outrageous
taxes to support West Pakistan's wars.
also complained that all the rulers came from West Pakistan.
Rioting drove the dictator from power.
The next dictator called for elections in 1972.
As expected, the military government lost in East Pakistan.
But to everyone's surprise they also lost in West Pakistan.
The dictator refused to let the winners take office, and
East Pakistani leaders. East
Pakistan revolted and set itself up as the republic of Bangladesh.
Pakistan invaded, with American and Chinese support.
Bangladesh received aid from Russia, encouragement from
most of the rest
of the world, and fighting soldiers from India.
India quickly defeated Pakistan.
The people of Bangladesh demanded that their leader,
Rahman, be freed from prison to become their first president.
The two nations had now become three,
Since then, Bangladesh has struggled as one of the world's
dictators have overthrown one elected leader after another.
India functions as the world's largest democracy.
Nepal is the only remaining Hindu kingdom in the world. It has an ancient history.
It was thd birthplace of the Buddha, and contributed much
to the cultures
of India and China. In
the warriors of the Gurkha tribe took over the country, leaving the
king as only
a figurehead. The
Nepal by making war on their neighbors.
In 1950, King Tribhuvana (
) took control of the government once more.
He built roads and schools, opening ancient Nepal to the
Tibet has been a district of China through almost all of
The Buddhist high priest, called the Dalai Lama (DAH-l§
LAH-ma), has ruled local affairs since the 1500s.
When the Dalai Lama dies, officials search the land for
the boy born soon
after who embodies the reincarnated spirit of the old ruler.
He becomes the new Dalai Lama.
the search lasted for years. When
China became a republic in 1911, Tibet went its own way.
Forty years later in 1951, the new Chinese Communist
Tibet a part of China again. A
years after that, the Dalai Lama fled to India.
For the past few centuries, Bhutan also chose its rulers
at the beginning
of the twentieth century, no satisfactory reincarnation could be found.
So the priests elected a king.
has remained a kingdom ever since.
In the southeast corner of Asia, only Thailand remained
free during the
colonial period. This
King Mongkut (mong-KOOT) hired European technicians and advisors to
nation strong. The
these Europeans was an English schoolteacher named Anna Leonowens
the book, Anna and the King of Siam, and the
musical, The King and I).
Anna's fifteen-year-old pupil Chulalongkorn
king when his father suddenly died.
did away with slavery. He
in railroads and telegraphs. He
ruled forty-two years from 1868 to 1910.
of these remarkable men were scholars.
kings of Thailand since then have developed surprising
RANI OF JHANSI
In the 1850s, the Raja of the Indian state of Jhansi died.
His young widow, the rani, decided to rule his lands.
But the British had just begun a policy of confiscating
the lands of any
ruler who died without a son. They
gave the rani a pension, and took over.
About this time, the Indian soldiers in the British army
The trouble broke out over new ammunition packages which
had to be bitten
open--packages waterproofed with lard from pigs and cows. (The Islamic
prohibited eating pigs; the Hindu religion prohibited eating cows.)
The rani joined this rebellion, and became its fiercest
The British surrounded her forces, but she broke through
their lines in a
wild horseback escape. She
gathered more supporters and suffered defeat again.
A third time she rode out to battle, clenching the reins
in her teeth so
she could swing her sword with both hands.
She died in the saddle.
The rani of Jhansi became a symbol of Indian independence
courage. Much of
came from women who drew their inspiration from the memory of the rani
In the early 1970s, scientists in the Philippines
discovered the Tasaday
(TAHS-a-day) tribe. They
caves deep in the jungle. They
a few leaves. They
tools. But the most
was their gentleness. No
angry or spoke loudly. They
each other a lot. Had
survived? Had these
people never been corrupted by civilization and all of its wars?
But one thing was wrong: The Tasaday did not have thousands of years of knowledge about jungle plants--especially those that could be used for medicine. One reporter declared that the whole thing was a hoax--that the Tasaday had just left nearby villages to pose for cameras in the caves. Yet they have not adjusted well to modern life, and some have cracked under the strain. After years of debate, scientists finally concluded that the ancestors of the Tasaday had gone to the jungle only about 150 years before. They had gradually lost contact with the outside world, and created a better society for themselves.
For fuller details and primary sources, click http://litera1no4.tripod.com/tasaday_frame.html. (It is slow loading, and treats the Tasaday as a hoax, but has lots of good information and some pictures.)
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