10 THINGS

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91

VIJAY SIMHA’s

Awful About Revolutions

Illustration: Sudeep Chaudhuri

1. CAN TURN RANCID
India’s freedom movement took 90 years from 1857. Or 27 from 1920. Ended in a horrific Partition.

2. CAN BE BARBAROUS
The Taliban went to avenge a gang rape in 1994. Soon turned into a woman-hating, man-killing force.

3. CAN DEVOUR ITS CHILDREN
Georges Danton guillotined in 1794 by fellow revolutionary Robespierre in the French Revolution.

4. CAN FAIL
The 1959 anti-China Tibetan uprising didn’t work. The Dalai Lama fled to India. Refugee since.

5. CAN BE POINTLESS
The 1979 Iranian revolution overthrew a westernised Shah, and created a rigid Islamic republic.

6. CAN BE ENDLESS
The Intifada, Palestine versus Israel. The whole world engaged, thousands dead, the end not in sight.

7.CAN BE LANGUID
Myanmar’s saffron revolution. So cool that Aung San Suu Kyi was under house arrest for 15 years.

8. CAN MAKE IT WORSE
The 1991 anti-Saddam Hussein Kurdish uprising led to two invasions of Iraq and devastated the world.

9. CAN BE TRAGIC
Germany. Failed rebellions in 1848 and 1942. War got Hitler after much human degradation, eventually.

10. CAN CREATE ILLUSIONS
The Naxal movement in India neither conquers nor capitulates. Just simmers.

& 10 THINGS ALLURING ABOUT THEM

1. Iceland miracle. Profits 18 months after Saucepan Revolution
2.
 Gandhi’s Ahimsa
3.
 Liberty, equality, fraternity. French Revolution
4.
 All men are created equal. The US, 1776
5. People power. USSR, 1917
6. Slave rebellion, Haiti 1804
7. Colour revolutions, CIS States
8. Singing revolutions. Baltic States
9. Velvet Revolution. Czechoslovakia 1989
10. Yellow Revolution, Philippines

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