Saturday, July 9, 2011

Hitler's dream come true, etc.

After going to the short rock-out performance at the C1 television (equal opportunity television, no less, a partner television of the LGBT Centre in its non-discrimination campaign, together with NTV and UBS), my evening continued at the Black Box Theater (yes, the very one that forbade the girls from the Young Women for Change to perform the transwomen's part of the Vagina Monologues back in March this year). This time it was the Globe International that organised the short movies evening at the theater. And I enjoyed it immensely. Naraa egch, the Globe's Executive Director, another LGBT rights supporter in Mongolia, always her wonderful and beautiful self, led the evening on, talking about the filmmaking and the making of short movies, a somewhat neglected area in Mongolia till the advent of the official 48 hours short film festival in Mongolia last year, organised by her son. When we were filming the campaign videos with Naraa egch, she was extremely excited about the project as she is a film script writer as well and loves cinema to bits. I was deeply moved by the fact that the very first 48 hours festival in Mongolia produced a Cannes-worthy project, "Dream", that was shown during the Cannes festival this year. But I have not opened my computer to write about the "Dream", the winner of last year's 48 hours festival. One of the three short films that were awarded audience appreciation prizes was called "Hitler's dream come true". As one of the co-organisers and donors, the German ambassador quickly made a disclaimer in his opening speech that the embassy had no hand in the choice of the films to be shown last night, and of course, that was the film that he was worried about. "Hitler's dream come true" was a chronicle of the ultranationalism in Mongolia, the film's starting point being 1990, with the main event of the movie taking place in 1999 and the depiction of the ultranationalist movement in 2010, when the film was made. 1990, the beginning of the democratic dream that made it possible to revive the history of Mongolia in its most glorious days during the Mongol Empire in the 13th and 14th centuries, all but forbidden throughout the socialist rule for the most part of the 20th century; 1999, the ultranationalist movement advent (indeed it started in 1999 as one of my close relatives was called time and again in the autumn of 1999 to join the anti-Chinese group that used to gather at the first maternity home then, of course, she never went) and 2010, when the BBC covered the ultranationalist movement in Mongolia, with all of its German nazi-period paraphernalia openly worn lovingly by the ultranationalists. There is even a nazi-themed bar in Ulaanbaatar, believe it or not. Never been to, won't, I don't have a death wish. Popular culture is a great gage of popular sentiment. A bar very much loved and frequented by nazi lovers who are oblivious to the fact that we would've been one of the first nations to be exterminated had the German-Japanese axis had the upper hand in the World War II, pop stars flaunting nazi uniforms and flags and the whole period-look in their music videos, nearly every building in Ulaanbaatar that has somewhere on it or in it a swastika, if not many, and a short film from the 48 hours that was given the audience prize... Plus increasingly violent attacks on foreigners in Mongolia, even women are not spared. A friend was smacked right in his face a month and a half ago when he was walking in broad daylight in the crowded part of the city, one of the major streets that runs from the State Department Store to the circus. A humanitarian NGO worker woman who was attacked and hit in the face and head and spat on by three men, again, in broad daylight. The list goes on. They were simply going about their business, not doing anything untoward, whose only fault seems to have been their skin and hair colour. And it's affecting not only foreigners. I was buying some food this afternoon. There was this boy in front of me ordering his food at the counter of one of the guanzes. He was a Mongolian-African mix. He asked one guy to please vacate the seat as he was sitting there. The guy, in his forties, a so-called mature age, came up and started verbally abusing the boy who would've been as old as his children, barely 15-16 years old, "You trash, you half-bloods". I called on his bullshit, asked him why he was abusing a boy who very politely said what he said. He started abusing me, I laughed him off, because at least he could not say the same "pure/impure blood" to me, I am and look quintessentially Mongolian. But I was glad that people around me started heckling him as well. This boy had the same beautiful colour of skin as my own cousin, and I know exactly how bad she was taunted by her classmates in school because of her colour. Back in early 2003, I went to her school once to deal with the principal of her school as she was doing nothing to punish the boy who threw a big bunch of keys in my cousin's face from a close range. She was bleeding profusely from two cuts on her forehead when I rushed there to see her. Racism, purity of blood, purity of genes - yes, I guess Hitler's dream came true in Mongolia. And it's unacceptable. It's a huge leap backwards for humanity. It's a shame on us as a nation. And yes, I do believe in the freedom of opinion, the freedom of speech, but not when such freedoms infringe upon other people's fundamental right to be through incitement of hatred.

1 comment:

  1. Just saw this German coverage of some ultranationalists http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=svVb2R5xKNc&feature=player_embedded#at=230 I don't think they are Dayar Mongol, though. I don't speak German, so I don't understand what they are saying, but it was disturbing to see various ignorant comments (such as swastika being intrinsically Mongolian, which is so incorrect. It's one of the few symbols imported to Mongolia by the first wave of Buddhism during the Hun period...) under the video. Why are people so ignorant?! Since when do we worship ignorance?! So disturbing.

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