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Satirical Articles

U.N. Acquires Nuclear Weapon NEW YORK—The United Nations, a highly organized governing body bent on world peace, has obtained a nuclear warhead and intends to use the dangerous device to pursue its radical human rights agenda, sources reported Monday.  
     News of the nuclear weapon first surfaced late last week when the United Nation's own watchdog group, the International Atomic Energy Agency, released startling new satellite photos of the uranium-based device. Shortly thereafter, U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon issued a short and brazen list of demands, calling on all nations to "bow down at once to social progress." "Tremble before the awesome might of this cooperative assembly of appointed representatives," said Ban, boldly holding a stack of diplomatic resolutions in his hand. "At last, when the United Nations calls for the development of more sustainable agricultural practices, the world at large will listen." Added Ban, "We will no longer be ignored."  
     The warhead, an Oralloy U-235 thermonuclear detonator encased in a long-range ballistic missile, is believed to be currently housed beneath the parking lot of the U.N. complex in New York. According to Pentagon officials, it is likely that the United Nations has already tested the weapon, and may in fact be prepared to deploy it if its demands for global harmony are not met. "All efforts are being made to engage this nationless threat in diplomatic talks, but so far, they remain uncooperative," U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff said. "However, I can assure you that the United States will not be pushed around. We will not be bullied into limiting our carbon-dioxide emissions or honoring the conditions established by the Geneva Conventions. The United States will not bend."
     Speaking at a press conference Tuesday, President Bush echoed Chertoff's sentiments."This rogue group of unbiased mediators will not be tolerated," said Bush, who has promised to continue his eight-year pledge not to negotiate with the United Nations under any circumstances. "If the U.N. thinks it can force the world to appreciate the equality of all people and their right to live free of poverty, hunger, and inhumane treatment, I say to them, 'Bring it on.'"  
     While no country has admitted to selling enriched uranium to the United Nations, experts claimed that acquiring the necessary materials was probably fairly easy, as the U.N.'s own Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty has been largely disregarded since being signed in 1968."The Russians, the Israelis, a rogue Pakistani arms trader—there are plenty of people out there who could have done it," said Katherine Boushie, a world politics professor at Columbia University. "After all, who knows better than the United Nations where someone can find nukes? They've spent years watching nation after nation illegally stockpile arms. Might have been what pissed them off, actually."Despite outspoken concerns from many nations, including North Korea, Iran, and Serbia, Secretary-General Ban has assured the international community that the U.N.'s nuclear arsenal will only be used for deterrent purposes. Chief among these is deterring other countries from thinking they can sign a chemical weapons ban and then act like the whole thing never happened, and coming to the U.N. only when it's convenient or profitable for them to do so.
     "I will say this as clearly as I can, so you all can hear me," said Ban, his finger hovering inches away from the small red button on his podium. "Either attend the next Follow-up International Conference on Financing for Development to Review the Implementation of the Monterrey Consensus, or prepare to suffer the consequences." Many, however, refuse to be intimidated by the peacekeeping organization's threats."They're bluffing," Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said. "The United Nations is still 15 years away from a nuclear bomb. Hell, they're 20 years away from achieving universal primary school education, and knowing them, they'll probably focus on that first."  

Maybe We Should Try Coddling The Terrorists

By Bill O'Reilly
September 12, 2007 |
Issue 43•37
 That said, I'm beginning to suspect that we've been going about this War on Terror all wrong. Before, I said we should treat the terrorists like the vile dogs that they are. But even vile dogs respond well to getting patted once in a while. So perhaps the best way to stop these jihadists from destroying our way of life is to do what the liberals have been proposing all along: start coddling them.The "blame America first" crowd wants to invite these crazed Islamic extremists to visit Main Street USA, and I say let's give it a shot. Let's invite them into our homes, put them up in the guest bedroom with the good linens, and fluff up their pillows real nice. But let's not stop there. Let's take those heartless murderers out to our finest restaurants, order them appetizers and wine and dessert and then pick up the tab. Look, folks, we don't really have a lot of options left. We've spent six long years fighting this war, and I don't feel any more safe than I did when we began. So why not call up this Muqtada al-Sadr fellow and tell him that the whole Iraqi shooting match is his for the taking? Now, I haven't gone soft. I've never taken the easy road and I'm not about to start. Make no mistake, terrorists are no better than cockroaches. But as with cockroaches, if you see one, that means there are dozens more, and the more you kill them, the more there seem to be. We've tried isolating these bloodthirsty killers, bombing them, waterboarding them, locking them away in secret prisons, and still they hang on. But you know what we haven't tried? Rolling out the red carpet and treating them like royalty. Take Osama bin Laden, for example. He's still a sworn foe of mine, but trying to smoke him out of his hole hasn't been working too well. We can't seem to find this guy through violence and intimidation, so let's send him a fruit basket instead. Let's pamper him and the rest of his evil band of freedom haters.I know I've been saying for years that we're fighting them in Baghdad so we don't have to fight them in Boston. That hasn't been working out so well, and maybe it was the wrong strategy all along. Perhaps we can book them a few flights into town, make them the guests of honor at a fancy-schmancy tea party, and ask them what we did wrong to make them hate us so much in the first place. We'll eagerly listen to their demands, and immediately cave in to them. I don't care how outlandish those demands are, just give these folks what they want. We're a rich nation; we can afford it.Folks, here's the bottom line: I don't want to die.That night, we get them a room at the finest hotel in New York, preferably the bridal suite. Then we tuck them into bed, read them a bedtime story, and tiptoe quietly out of the room so as not to disturb their sweet slumber. Bright and early the next morning, we give the terrorists a good old-fashioned ticker-tape parade right there in lower Manhattan.You don't have ticker tape? Not a problem. Just go to my website, billoreilly.com, and you can get some great Factor gear, including some brand-new "Let's pamper the terrorists" ticker tape. Makes a great back-to-school gift, and remember, all proceeds go to a terrorist-coddling charity.  

'I Would Make A Bad President,' Obama Says In Huge Campaign BlunderTALLAHASSEE, FL—In a campaign gaffe that could potentially jeopardize Sen. Barack Obama's White House bid, the Democratic presidential nominee told nearly 8,000 supporters Tuesday that, if elected, he would be a terrible president. The blunder, captured by all major media outlets and broadcast live on CNN, occurred when the typically polished Obama fielded a question about his health care policy. Obama answered by saying he would give small business owners a tax credit to help them provide health care for their employees, and then added, "Now, I'm not completely certain that my plan would work because, overall, I think I would make a bad president."According to sources, before those on hand could fully process what Obama had said, the Illinois senator continued to stumble, claiming that, were he to win the general election, he'd have absolutely no idea what to do. "My youth and inexperience would definitely make me an awful president," said Obama, whose seven-minute misstep was further exacerbated when he called himself "no expert" on the economy. "To be perfectly honest, I'd be worried about putting me in charge of the most powerful military in the world because I'm not any good when it comes to making important decisions. Also, I'm not sure how much I care about keeping this great nation of ours safe." "I'm an elitist, I hate Israel, and I want to lose the war in Iraq," Obama concluded, and then, seemingly unaware of the magnitude of his blunder, smiled, gave a thumbs-up to the stunned crowd, and urged his supporters to get out and vote on Nov. 4.Immediately following the speech, Obama campaign officials released a written statement alleging that their candidate's comments had been taken out of context. In addition, Obama's top adviser David Axelrod claimed that the senator was quoting former president Abraham Lincoln when he said, "I am not the guy to head the executive branch of the United States government. Trust me. I'm really not."Beltway observers agreed that the gaffe could come back to haunt Obama on Election Day. "This might very well be the sound bite voters have in their heads when they step inside that booth on Tuesday," ABC political analyst George Stephanopoulos said. "It's just not the message you want to send to voters when you are up in the polls. Saying that you would make a bad president, especially when your entire campaign has been built around the idea that you would make a good president, doesn't play well with independent and undecided voters." "Also, swing states like Ohio and Florida have historically leaned toward the nominee who thinks he'd be a good president, rather than the nominee who thinks he'd 'probably just screw everything up worse,'" Stephanopoulos added. An analysis of historical documents supports Stephanopoulos' claim, and confirms that the past 55 winning presidential candidates—with the exception of a dying Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1944—all strongly maintained they would be good or great presidents throughout their campaigns, and never hinted otherwise. "I think Sen. Obama may have opened up a slight window for John McCain here," New York Times reporter David Sanger said during Wednesday's taping of Charlie Rose. "If the McCain camp can find some way to exploit this miscue, it could have the potential to be a real game-changer."However, a CNN poll taken moments after Obama's speech revealed that the candidate's misstep may have simply gotten lost amid the 24-hour news cycle. Though most citizens said they would prefer a candidate who thinks he'd be a good president, 23 percent said they would still vote for someone who thinks he would make an okay president. Furthermore, 35 percent of citizens said they would vote for a nominee who promised to be a serviceable, or even a so-so, president. Forty-two percent of citizens polled said that, at this point, a "just plain bad" president would also be good enough."I am more certain than ever that I will vote for Obama," Windham, NH resident James Kilner said. "This is the first time I have really connected with a candidate, mainly because I think I would make a pretty bad president, too." 

Lost VenerationIt's high time we stop the shabby treatment of big-time athletes and show a little respect 

How disgraceful that Americans overpay schoolteachers, glorify social workers and lavish attention on stay-at-home mothers while giving scant money, publicity or deference to the people who really deserve it—namely, our Super Bowl champions. "Disrespect was the theme of the Rams' camp this year," reports the Associated Press. "Ask any player and he'll say the team was ignored in the off-season.""There's a certain amount of disrespect," agrees rookie Rams coach Mike Martz, inexplicably bereft of a book contract or genius grant.Says The Kansas City Star of this veneration vacuum: "You could call it disrespect."Damn right it's disrespect, and the Rams aren't the only ones getting dissed this year. "I deserve a lot more respect than I'm getting," says unsigned Heat guard Tim Hard-away, who was paid $4.8 million last season. "I've got to look out for Tim Hardaway and Tim Hardaway's family."The truth is, we don't properly esteem any of our top athletes. College football champ Florida State? " Florida State bears a grudge of disrespect," notes The Salt Lake Tribune. "The [preseason] polls relegated the Seminoles to the lowly spot of No. 2." Runner-up Virginia Tech? "The critics," reports The Boston Globe, "disrespected them." Ninth-ranked Florida? "It's disrespect to us as a whole," says senior Alex Willis, referring to the Gators' unjustly unheralded wide receiver corps.When will we, as Americans, stop fawning over doctors and nurses and recognize the vital contributions of the Illinois defense? ("Senior linebacker Michael Young," reports the Daily Illini, "said the defense will make the best of the disrespect.") When will this nation stop glamorizing engineers and start appreciating the New Mexico offense? ("All that disrespect," says Lobos tackle Jon Samuelson, "is a challenge to us.") Why won't a single magazine, television network or sneaker company acknowledge the athletic skills of Raptors swingman Vince Carter and fill the hole in his self-esteem that evidently opened when he was—according to an article last week in The Toronto Star—"disrespected by members of [Tracy] McGrady's family and entourage..."?Society has come to a sorry pass when an NBA All-Star is not given props by his own cousin's entourage. But that's hardly surprising, because nobody in North America believes in, roots for or supports our elite athletes, save elite athletes. "Nobody thought we could do it last year," says Rams defensive tackle Nate Hob-good-Chittick of the NFL title. "But we just believed in ourselves.""Nobody thought we could do it," said Titans coach Jeff Fisher, of winning the Super Bowl (which they barely lost). "[But] we thought we could."Yet these proud warriors, surrounded by no-men and ill-wishers, constantly prove us wrong. They're the Little Engines That Could. "Nobody gave us a chance to be where we are at this point," Rockies reliever Gabe White said when Colorado miraculously occupied first place 12 weeks into this season."Nobody gave us a chance to do much of anything," said Karl Malone, whose Jazz didn't do much of anything in the NBA playoffs, but that misses the point. The point is this: You must respect a man of Karl Mal-one's stature. When 40-year-old Tim Raines, cut last month from the U.S. Olympic baseball team, said "a man of my stature" deserved better treatment, I was struck again by how shabbily we treat pro athletes, and a wave of shame washed over me.Americans now spend so much time doting on scientists, spoiling soldiers and kissing the pampered fannies of the layabout middle class that we've forgotten those people, invisible and largely unrewarded, who do the important work of society: People such as Broncos coach Mike Shanahan, who was, The Denver Post reported last week, "frequently and roughly disrespected all last year." We're better than this, America. If you see Tim Hardaway on the street-walking with Tim Hardaway's family—salute him, salaam him, show him some respect.

 

Historical Articles/Essays

History of Burma

The History of Burma, now officially Myanmar, is long and complicated. Several ethnic groups have lived in the region, the oldest of which are probably the Mon or the Pyu. In the 9th century the Bamar (Burman) people migrated from the then China-Tibet border region into the valley of the Ayeyarwady, and now form the governing majority.

The expansion of Burma had consequences along its frontiers. As those frontiers moved ever closer to British India, there were problems both with refugees and military operations spilling over ill-defined borders. In response to the continued expansion and even direct attacks by Burma, the British and the Siamese joined forces against it in 1824. The First Anglo-Burmese War (1824-26) ended in a British victory, and by the Treaty of Yandabo, Burma lost territory previously conquered in Assam, Manipur and Arakan. The British also took possession of Tenasserim with the intention to use it as a bargaining chip in future negotiations with either Burma or Siam. As the century wore on, the British in India began to covet the resources and main port of Burma during an era of great territorial expansion. In 1852, Commodore Lambert was despatched to Burma by Lord Dalhousie over a number of minor issues related to the previous treaty. The Burmese immediately made concessions including the removal of a governor whom the British had made their casus belli. Lambert eventually provoked a naval confrontation in extremely questionable circumstances and thus started the Second Anglo-Burmese War in 1852, which ended in the British annexation of Pegu province, renamed Lower Burma. The war resulted in a palace revolution in Burma, with King Pagan Min (1846–52) being replaced by his half brother, Mindon Min (1853-78). King Mindon tried to modernise the Burmese state and economy to resist British encroachments, and he established a new capital at Mandalay, which he proceeded to fortify. This was not enough to stop the British, however, who claimed that Mindon's son Thibaw Min (ruled 1878–85) was a tyrant intending to side with the French, that he had lost control of the country, thus allowing for disorder at the frontiers, and that he was reneging on a treaty signed by his father. Taking advantage of France's recent defeat of China, and confident that China would not intervene to defend its tributary, the British declared war once again in 1885, conquering the remainder of the country in the Third Anglo-Burmese War resulting in total annexation of Burma.

By the demise of the monarchy and the separation of religion and state.[citation needed] Though war officially ended after only a couple of weeks, resistance continued in northern Burma until 1890, with the British finally resorting to a systematic destruction of villages and appointment of new officials to finally halt all guerrilla activity.[citation needed] The economic nature of society also changed dramatically. After the opening of the Suez Canal, the demand for Burmese rice grew and vast tracts of land were opened up for cultivation. However, in order to prepare the new land for cultivation, farmers were forced to borrow money from Indian moneylenders called chettiars at high interest rates and were often foreclosed on and evicted losing land and livestock.[citation needed] Most of the jobs also went to indentured Indian labourers, and whole villages became outlawed as they resorted to 'dacoity' (armed robbery).[citation needed] While the Burmese economy grew, all the power and wealth remained in the hands of several British firms, Anglo-Burmese and migrants from India.[citation needed] The civil service was largely staffed by the Anglo-Burmese community and Indians, and Burmese were excluded almost entirely from military service.[citation needed] Though the country prospered, the Burmese people failed to reap the rewards.[citation needed] (See George Orwell's novel Burmese Days for a fictional account of the British in Burma.). Throughout colonial rule through the mid 1960's, the Anglo-Burmese were to dominate the country, causing discontent among the local populace.[citation needed]

By the turn of the century, a nationalist movement began to take shape in the form of Young Men's Buddhist Associations (YMBA), modelled on the YMCA, as religious associations were allowed by the colonial authorities. They were later superseded by the General Council of Burmese Associations (GCBA) which was linked with Wunthanu athin or National Associations that sprang up in villages throughout Burma Proper.[citation needed] A new generation of Burmese leaders arose in the early twentieth century from amongst the educated classes that were permitted to go to London to study law.[citation needed] They came away from this experience with the belief that the Burmese situation could be improved through reform.[citation needed] Progressive constitutional reform in the early 1920s led to a legislature with limited powers, a university and more autonomy for Burma within the administration of India. Efforts were also undertaken to increase the representation of Burmese in the civil service. Some people began to feel that the rate of change was not fast enough and the reforms not expansive enough

In 1920 the first university students strike in history broke out[citation needed] in protest against the new University Act which the students believed would only benefit the elite and perpetuate colonial rule. 'National Schools' sprang up across the country in protest against the colonial education system, and the strike came to be commemorated as 'National Day'.[2] There were further strikes and anti-tax protests in the later 1920s led by the Wunthanu athins. Prominent among the political activists were Buddhist monks (pongyi), such as U Ottama and U Seinda in the Arakan who subsequently led an armed rebellion against the British and later the nationalist government after independence, and U Wisara, the first martyr of the movement to die after a protracted hunger strike in prison. [2] (One of the main thoroughfares in Yangon is named after U Wisara.) In December 1930, a local tax protest by Saya San in Tharrawaddy quickly grew into first a regional and then a national insurrection against the government. Lasting for two years, the Galon rebellion, named after the mythical bird Garuda — enemy of the Nagas i.e. the British — emblazoned on the pennants the rebels carried, required thousands of British troops to suppress along with promises of further political reform. The eventual trial of Saya San, who was executed, allowed several future national leaders, including Dr Ba Maw and U Saw, who participated in his defence, to rise to prominence.[2]The paddle steamer Ramapoora (right) of the British India Steam Navigation Company on the Rangoon river having just arrived from Moulmein. 1895. Photographers: Watts and Skeen.

May 1930 saw the founding of the Dobama Asiayone (We Burmans Association) whose members called themselves Thakin (an ironic name as thakin means "master" in the Burmese language—rather like the Indian 'sahib'— proclaiming that they were the true masters of the country entitled to the term usurped by the colonial masters).[2] The second university students strike in 1936 was triggered by the expulsion of Aung San and Ko Nu, leaders of the Rangoon University Students Union (RUSU), for refusing to reveal the name of the author who had written an article in their university magazine, making a scathing attack on one of the senior university officials. It spread to Mandalay leading to the formation of the All Burma Students Union (ABSU). Aung San and Nu subsequently joined the Thakin movement progressing from student to national politics.[2] The British separated Burma from India in 1937 and granted the colony a new constitution calling for a fully elected assembly, but this proved to be a divisive issue as some Burmese felt that this was a ploy to exclude them from any further Indian reforms whereas other Burmese saw any action that removed Burma from the control of India to be a positive step. Ba Maw served as the first prime minister of Burma, but he was succeeded by U Saw in 1939, who served as prime minister from 1940 until he was arrested on January 19, 1942 by the British for communicating with the Japanese.

A wave of strikes and protests that started from the oilfields of central Burma in 1938 became a general strike with far-reaching consequences. In Rangoon student protesters, after successfully picketing the Secretariat, the seat of the colonial government, were charged by the British mounted police wielding batons and killing a Rangoon University student called Aung Kyaw. In Mandalay, the police shot into a crowd of protesters led by Buddhist monks killing 17 people. The movement became known as Htaung thoun ya byei ayeidawbon (the '1300 Revolution' named after the Burmese calendar year)[2], and December 20, the day the first martyr Aung Kyaw fell, commemorated by students as 'Bo Aung Kyaw Day'.[3] 

The British in India

The English sought to stake out claims in India at the expense of the Portuguese dating back to the Elizabethan era. In 1600, Queen Elizabeth I incorporated the English East India Company (later the British East India Company), granting it a monopoly of trade from the Cape of Good Hope eastward to the Strait of Magellan. In 1639 it acquired Madras on the east coast of India, where it quickly surpassed Portuguese Goa as the principal European trading centre on the Indian Subcontinent.

Through bribes, diplomacy, and manipulation of weak native rulers, the company prospered in India, where it became the most powerful political force, and outrivaled its Portuguese, and French competitors. For more than one hundred years, English and French trading companies had fought one another for supremacy, and by the middle of the eighteenth century competition between the British and the French had heated up. French defeat by the British under the command of Robert Clive during the Seven Years' War (1756-1763) marked the end of the French stake in India.

The collapse of Mughal IndiaThe British East India Company, although still in direct competition with French and Dutch interests until 1763, was able to extend its control over almost the whole of India in the century following the subjugation of Bengal at the 1757 Battle of Plassey. The British East India Company made great advances at the expense of a Mughal dynasty, seething with corruption, oppression, and revolt, that was crumbling under the despotic rule of Aurangzeb (1658-1707).

The reign of Shah Jahan (1628-1658) had marked the height of Mughal power. However, the reign of Aurangzeb, a ruthless and fanatical man who intended to rid India of all views alien to the Islamic faith, was disastrous. By 1690, when Mughal territorial expansion reached its greatest extent, Aurangzeb's Empire encompassed the entire Indian Subcontinent. But this period of power was followed by one of decline. Fifty years after the death of Aurangzeb, the great Mughal empire had crumbled. Meanwhile, marauding warlords, nobles, and others bent on gaining power left the Subcontinent increasingly anarchic. Although the Mughals kept the imperial title until 1858, the central government had collapsed, creating a power vacuum.

Aside from defeating the French during the Seven Years' War, Robert Clive, the leader of the Company in India, defeated a key Indian ruler of Bengal at the decisive Battle of Plassey (1757), a victory that ushered in the beginning of a new period in Indian history, that of informal British rule. While still nominally the sovereign, the Mughal Indian emperor became more and more of a puppet ruler, and anarchy spread until the company stepped into the role of policeman of India. The transition to formal imperialism, characterised by Queen Victoria being crowned "Empress of India" in the 1870s was a gradual process. The first step toward cementing formal British control extended back to the late eighteenth century. The British Parliament, disturbed by the idea that a great business concern, interested primarily in profit, was controlling the destinies of millions of people, passed acts in 1773 and 1784 that gave itself the power to control company policies and to appoint the highest company official in India, the Governor-General. (This system of dual control lasted until 1858.) By 1818 the East India Company was master of all of India. Some local rulers were forced to accept its overlordship; others were deprived of their territories. Some portions of India were administered by the British directly; in others native dynasties were retained under British supervision.

Until 1858, however, much of India was still officially the dominion of the Mughal emperor. Anger among some social groups, however, was seething under the governor-generalship of James Dalhousie (1847-1856), who annexed the Punjab (1849) after victory in the Second Sikh War, annexed seven princely states on the basis of lapse, annexed the key state of Oudh on the basis of misgovernment, and upset cultural sensibilities by banning Hindu practices such as Sati. The 1857 Sepoy Rebellion, or Indian Mutiny, an uprising initiated by Indian troops, called sepoys, who formed the bulk of the Company's armed forces, was the key turning point. Rumour had spread among them that their bullet cartridges were lubricated with pig and cow fat. The cartridges had to be bit open, so this upset the Hindu and Muslim soldiers. The Hindu religion held cows sacred, and for Muslims pork was considered Haraam. In one camp, 85 out of 90 sepoys would not accept the cartridges from their garrison officer. The British harshly punished those who would not by jailing them. The Indian people were outraged, and on May 10, 1857, sepoys marched to Delhi, and, with the help of soldiers stationed there, captured it. Fortunately for the British, many areas remained loyal and quiescent, allowing the revolt to be crushed after fierce fighting. One important consequence of the revolt was the final collapse of the Mughal dynasty. The mutiny also ended the system of dual control under which the British government and the British East India Company shared authority. The government relieved the company of its political responsibilities, and in 1858, after 258 years of existence, the company relinquished its role. Trained civil servants were recruited from graduates of British universities, and these men set out to rule India. Lord Canning (created earl in 1859), appointed Governor-General of India in 1856, became known as "Clemency Canning" as a term of derision for his efforts to restrain revenge against the Indians during the Indian Mutiny. When the Government of India was transferred from the Company to the Crown, Canning became the first viceroy of India.

The rise of Indian nationalismThe denial of equal status to Indians was the immediate stimulus for the formation in 1885 of the Indian National Congress, initially loyal to the Empire but committed from 1905 to increased self-government and by 1930 to outright independence. The "Home charges," payments transferred from India for administrative costs, were a lasting source of nationalist grievance, though the flow declined in relative importance over the decades to independence in 1947.Although majority Hindu and minority Muslim political leaders were able to collaborate closely in their criticism of British policy into the 1920s, British support for a distinct Muslim political organisation, the Muslim League from 1906 and insistence from the 1920s on separate electorates for religious minorities, is seen by many in India as having contributed to Hindu-Muslim discord and the country's eventual Partition.

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