Tamils - a Trans State Nation..

"To us all towns are one, all men our kin.
Life's good comes not from others' gift, nor ill
Man's pains and pains' relief are from within.
Thus have we seen in visions of the wise !."
Tamil Poem in Purananuru, circa 500 B.C 

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Home  >  International Relations in the Age of Empire  > Arundhati Roy - Confronting Empire > On Intellectual Engagement > Opening Statement on Behalf of the Jury of Concience of the World Tribunal on Iraq > Tide or Ivory Snow? Public Power in the Age of Empire > Instant-Mix Imperial Democracy (Buy One, Get One Free) > Confronting Empire Come September 

International Relations
in the Age of Empire

Arundhati Roy - Confronting Empire

"Remember this: We be many and they be few. They need us more than we need them. Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing."

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Selected Writings & Speeches

The silent horror of the war in Sri Lanka, 31 March 2009
The monster in the mirror, 12 December 2008

'It�s outright war and both sides are choosing their weapons', March 2007

" Many of us are in a position where we are beginning to align ourselves on the side of those who we know have no place for us in their religious or ideological imagination. It�s true that everybody changes radically when they come to power � look at Mandela�s ANC. Corrupt, capitalist, bowing to the IMF, driving the poor out of their homes � honouring Suharto, the killer of hundreds of thousands of Indonesian Communists, with South Africa�s highest civilian award. Who would have thought it could happen? But does this mean South Africans should have backed away from the struggle against apartheid? Or that they should regret it now? Does it mean Algeria should have remained a French colony, that Kashmiris, Iraqis and Palestinians should accept military occupation? That people whose dignity is being assaulted should give up the fight because they can�t find saints to lead them into battle?.."

On Intellectual Engagement, November 2005

"..The facts are there in the world today. People like Chomsky have made a huge contribution to that. But what does information mean? What are facts? There is so much information that almost all becomes meaningless and disempowering. Where has it all gone? What does the World Social Forum mean today? They are big questions now. Ultimately, millions of people marched against the war in Iraq. But the war was prosecuted, the occupation is in full stride. I do not for a moment want to undermine the fact that unveiling the facts has meant a huge swing of public opinion against the occupation of Iraq, it has meant that America�s secret history is now street talk, but what next? To expose things is quite different from being able to effectively resist things... I don�t agree with the term, Intellectual. Anybody with skills and intelligence can be intellectual. A cobbler is an intellectual. I don�t really want to work out the definitions. It�s just the opposite of what novelists do. They really try to free their thinking from such definitions."

Opening Statement on Behalf of the Jury of Concience of the World Tribunal on Iraq, June 2005

"The assault on Iraq is an assault on all of us: on our dignity, our intelligence, and our future."

Tide or Ivory Snow? Public Power in the Age of Empire, August 2004

"...No government's condemnation of terrorism is credible if it cannot show itself to be open to change by non violent dissent...But instead .. any kind of mass political mobilization or organization is being bought off, or broken, or simply ignored. Meanwhile, governments and the corporate media.. lavish their time, attention, technology, research, and admiration on war and terrorism. Violence has been deified. The message this sends is disturbing and dangerous: If you seek to air a public grievance, violence is more effective than non violence...It's time to recognize that no amount of nuclear weapons or full-spectrum dominance or daisy cutters or spurious governing councils and loyal jirgas can buy peace at the cost of justice. The urge for hegemony and preponderance by some will be matched with greater intensity by the longing for dignity and justice by others. "

The New American Century, January 2004 

" In January 2003 thousands of us from across the world gathered in Porto Alegre in Brazil and declared--reiterated--that "Another World Is Possible." A few thousand miles north, in Washington, George W. Bush and his aides were thinking the same thing. Our project was the World Social Forum. Theirs--to further what many call the Project for the New American Century. ..In the great cities of Europe and America, where a few years ago these things would only have been whispered, now people are openly talking about the good side of imperialism and the need for a strong empire to police an unruly world. The new missionaries want order at the cost of justice. Discipline at the cost of dignity. And ascendancy at any price. Occasionally some of us are invited to "debate" the issue on "neutral" platforms provided by the corporate media. Debating imperialism is a bit like debating the pros and cons of rape. What can we say? That we really miss it? "

Instant-Mix Imperial Democracy (Buy One, Get One Free), May 2003

Confronting Empire, January 2003

"Remember this: We be many and they be few. They need us more than we need them. Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day, I can hear her breathing."

Mesopotamia. Babylon. The Tigris and Euphrates - Arundhati Roy in the Guardian , April 2003 

"...When invading American soldiers (from the army "that's only here to help") are taken prisoner and shown on Iraqi TV, George Bush says it violates the Geneva convention and "exposes the evil at the heart of the regime". But it is entirely acceptable for US television stations to show the hundreds of prisoners being held by the US government in Guantanamo Bay, kneeling on the ground with their hands tied behind their backs, blinded with opaque goggles and with earphones clamped on their ears, to ensure complete visual and aural deprivation. When questioned about the treatment of these prisoners, US Government officials don't deny that they're being being ill-treated. They deny that they're "prisoners of war".."

Arundhati Roy Interview with Michael Alpert, July, 2003 

 "Those asking after our alternative to neo-liberal globalization, actually expect an answer as violent and totalitarian as the one we reject. We are not looking for one answer. We only ask for the current brutality to stop, to create new space for thousands of possible answers.� 

Come September - Arundhati Roy and Howard Zimm in Conversation,  September 2002

"...there are many Americans who would be mortified to be associated with their government's policies. The most scholarly, scathing, incisive, hilarious critiques of the hypocrisy and the contradictions in U.S. government policy come from American citizens. When the rest of the world wants to know what the U.S. government is up to, we turn to Noam Chomsky, Edward Said, Howard Zinn, Ed Herman, Amy Goodman, Michael Albert, Chalmers Johnson, William Blum and Anthony Arnove to tell us what's really going on..."

The algebra of infinite justice - Arundhati Roy in the Guardian, September 2001

"..In 1996, Madeleine Albright, then the US secretary of state, was asked on national television what she felt about the fact that 500,000 Iraqi children had died as a result of US economic sanctions. She replied that it was "a very hard choice", but that, all things considered, "we think the price is worth it"... So here we have it. The equivocating distinction between civilisation and savagery, between the "massacre of innocent people" ...and "collateral damage". The sophistry and fastidious algebra of infinite justice. How many dead Iraqis will it take to make the world a better place? How many dead Afghans for every dead American? How many dead women and children for every dead man? How many dead mojahedin for each dead investment banker?.."

Books by Arundhati Roy

* Field Notes on Democracy: Listening to Grasshoppers, 2009
*An Ordinary Person's Guide to Empire, 2004

"..The project of corporate globalization has cracked the code of democracy. Free elections, a free press and an independent judiciary mean little when the free market has reduced them to commodities on sale to the highest bidder..."

*The Checkbook and the Cruise Missile: Conversations with Arundhati Roy, 2004
*Come September (audio), 2004
*Instant-Mix Imperial Democracy : Two Talks with Howard Zinn [abridged], Audio CD, 2004
*For Reasons of State Noam Chomsky, Arundhati Roy, 2003
*War Talk 2003
*Power Politics,2002
*Algebra of Infinite Justice (Revised and Updated) 2002
*The Greater Common Good 1999
*The Cost of Living, 1999
*The God of Small Things, 1998, - 1997 Booker Prize Winner



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