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British Guiana: Race War
TIME magazine, Friday, Jun. 05, 1964
Terrorist bands of East Indians and Negroes roamed British Guiana day and night last week, waging sporadic war on each other, murdering and looting, burning homes and assaulting women. Only the presence of 1,200 British troops with orders to shoot to kill prevented the ugly violence from erupting into a full-scale civil war, pitting the country's 295,000 East Indians, led by Premier Cheddi Jagan, against its 190,000 Negroes, who hate Jagan as a racist and rabblerousing Marxist.
Cats in the Cane.

Tensions have been building up for years between the two peoples in Britain's small, self-governing South American colony. Instead of seeking to calm the passions, Jagan has only fanned them higher. Three months ago, he sent his East Indian sugar workers out on a jurisdictional strike against a larger, anti-Jagan union. Cats were doused with gasoline and sent yowling through the cane fields as living torches. Jagan's 'strikers attacked Negroes in the fields; half a dozen workers died of the beatings. Retaliating in kind, gangs of Negroes went hunting for East Indians.
In the early stages, the worst of the fighting was centered in a small town, eleven miles west of the Georgetown capital. Last week the violence flared all across the unhappy colony. One night in Leonora, ten miles west of Georgetown, a band of terrorists attacked a police patrol, killed two constables and escaped with their rifles. Next morning an elderly Negro couple was found shot to death on their nearby farm. At news of the killings, a raging mob of Negroes halted a Georgetown-bound train and in a vicious melee left 17 East Indians injured, including one victim with both hands, both legs and his back broken. In Georgetown, gangs of Negroes beat up hundreds of Indians, looted Indian market stalls, robbed Indian workers, chased Indian children out of a school.
Spear in the Back.

Within hours, the situation was so far out of control that British-appointed
Governor Sir Richard Luyt declared a state of emergency throughout the colony, ordered a 7 p.m-to-5 a.m. curfew in one troubled area, and sent a hurry call to London that brought 500 more Tommies to reinforce the troops already on hand. Still the killing went on. At Bachelor's Adventure, a predominantly Negro village 14 miles from Georgetown, Negroes took up spears and pitchforks, began attacking Indians and burning their homes. A pregnant woman, mother of eleven, was killed by a spear thrust in the back, her husband was critically injured, and an Indian watchman on a sugar plantation was shot dead. In Wismar, 60 miles south of Georgetown, Negro bands burned close to 200 homes and killed four East Indians, including one man burned to death. British troops rushed in to disperse the mobs and escort 1,700 East Indians to safety.
At week's end the patrolling soldiers were desperately trying to keep the two races apart. No one had an accurate count of the toll, but so far in Jagan's strike at least 33 East Indians and Negroes have been killed and more than 2,000 injured.

[GILBAKKA'S NOTE: The Cheddi Jagan Research Centre website has the link to the above and other TIME reports on Guyana 1953-1992. We must learn a lesson from history. The politics of race is deadly.]

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I do not think this tribalism will ever cease. Even when there are more douglas, some hate full person would find the Indo and Afro in them to hate.

 

Those 28 years of PNC was never a lesson for the 23 years of the PPP. And then comes along Granger who said all the correct things but in the end his decisions fans the flames of racism. None of these people respect the citizens to be accountable. Simply, they are like gods. Living in the above and no desire of accountability.

 

This 2015 elections unleashed alot of demons. A Guyanese Negro woman telling a Bajan Negro woman how bad coolie people are to Black folks in Guyana. Like is dem time now. Under the PPP, it was abhe on top.

 

It is appear as if the demons were out even before hallowen. Is no wonder the letter writers are  spewing their venom.

 

Even on this BB, we have this demonizing.

 

The BGEIA was a good thing for East Indians in Guyana. They were elites who chartered Indian interests. Though they seldom ever visited the rural areas, they considered their interests. East Indians can do well in Guyana, if other progressive Indian consider their plight. And invest in their communities. So far, no government has any body interests at heart.

Originally Posted by Gilbakka:

British Guiana: Race War
TIME magazine, Friday, Jun. 05, 1964
Terrorist bands of East Indians and Negroes roamed British Guiana day and night last week, waging sporadic war on each other, murdering and looting, burning homes and assaulting women. Only the presence of 1,200 British troops with orders to shoot to kill prevented the ugly violence from erupting into a full-scale civil war, pitting the country's 295,000 East Indians, led by Premier Cheddi Jagan, against its 190,000 Negroes, who hate Jagan as a racist and rabblerousing Marxist.
Cats in the Cane.

Tensions have been building up for years between the two peoples in Britain's small, self-governing South American colony. Instead of seeking to calm the passions, Jagan has only fanned them higher. Three months ago, he sent his East Indian sugar workers out on a jurisdictional strike against a larger, anti-Jagan union. Cats were doused with gasoline and sent yowling through the cane fields as living torches. Jagan's 'strikers attacked Negroes in the fields; half a dozen workers died of the beatings. Retaliating in kind, gangs of Negroes went hunting for East Indians.
In the early stages, the worst of the fighting was centered in a small town, eleven miles west of the Georgetown capital. Last week the violence flared all across the unhappy colony. One night in Leonora, ten miles west of Georgetown, a band of terrorists attacked a police patrol, killed two constables and escaped with their rifles. Next morning an elderly Negro couple was found shot to death on their nearby farm. At news of the killings, a raging mob of Negroes halted a Georgetown-bound train and in a vicious melee left 17 East Indians injured, including one victim with both hands, both legs and his back broken. In Georgetown, gangs of Negroes beat up hundreds of Indians, looted Indian market stalls, robbed Indian workers, chased Indian children out of a school.
Spear in the Back.

Within hours, the situation was so far out of control that British-appointed
Governor Sir Richard Luyt declared a state of emergency throughout the colony, ordered a 7 p.m-to-5 a.m. curfew in one troubled area, and sent a hurry call to London that brought 500 more Tommies to reinforce the troops already on hand. Still the killing went on. At Bachelor's Adventure, a predominantly Negro village 14 miles from Georgetown, Negroes took up spears and pitchforks, began attacking Indians and burning their homes. A pregnant woman, mother of eleven, was killed by a spear thrust in the back, her husband was critically injured, and an Indian watchman on a sugar plantation was shot dead. In Wismar, 60 miles south of Georgetown, Negro bands burned close to 200 homes and killed four East Indians, including one man burned to death. British troops rushed in to disperse the mobs and escort 1,700 East Indians to safety.
At week's end the patrolling soldiers were desperately trying to keep the two races apart. No one had an accurate count of the toll, but so far in Jagan's strike at least 33 East Indians and Negroes have been killed and more than 2,000 injured.

[GILBAKKA'S NOTE: The Cheddi Jagan Research Centre website has the link to the above and other TIME reports on Guyana 1953-1992. We must learn a lesson from history. The politics of race is deadly.]

Thanks for sharing this.  That pregnant woman from Bachelor's Adventure who was killed was also chopped with a cutlass and the baby was hanging from her belly while she laid in a pool of blood and died.  And, by the way, if the PPP had won this past elections this would have happened all over again.  Remember those grenades that were found a few weeks ago.  

During the racial disturbances in the early 1960s, atrocities were committed by Indos and Afros alike. As a high school pupil, I was beaten up one afternoon on D'Urban Street and pushed into the concrete gutter. Then, in late 1964 I watched in amazement at the large number of home-made rifles British soldiers fished out of a 4-foot trench in my street at Uitvlugt Pasture, an Indo neighbourhood. Heaven knows how many Afros were shot with those guns.

In Afro-dominated Uitvlugt Casbah, Indo houses were dynamited. A newly built mosque in the Muslim cemetery behind Casbah was destroyed in broad daylight by men with sledge hammers and axes.

After the riots ended, I met Rev Timothy Waldron, the new parson of the Pilgrim Holiness Church in Casbah. His wife showed me the scars on her forearm, in which a bullet was lodged. That old couple had lived in Mahaicony when Indos attacked their home and shot their son dead. One of the persons arrested for that murder was Ramesh Balsingh who later became Cheddi Jagan's bodyguard-driver.

We ought to recognize that we share the same blame, and in order to move forward we must avoid taking sides on the basis of race. Fifty years have passed since those deadly racial disturbances but racial prejudice is alive and kicking among Guyanese. When will it end?

Originally Posted by Gilbakka:

During the racial disturbances in the early 1960s, atrocities were committed by Indos and Afros alike. As a high school pupil, I was beaten up one afternoon on D'Urban Street and pushed into the concrete gutter. Then, in late 1964 I watched in amazement at the large number of home-made rifles British soldiers fished out of a 4-foot trench in my street at Uitvlugt Pasture, an Indo neighbourhood. Heaven knows how many Afros were shot with those guns.

In Afro-dominated Uitvlugt Casbah, Indo houses were dynamited. A newly built mosque in the Muslim cemetery behind Casbah was destroyed in broad daylight by men with sledge hammers and axes.

After the riots ended, I met Rev Timothy Waldron, the new parson of the Pilgrim Holiness Church in Casbah. His wife showed me the scars on her forearm, in which a bullet was lodged. That old couple had lived in Mahaicony when Indos attacked their home and shot their son dead. One of the persons arrested for that murder was Ramesh Balsingh who later became Cheddi Jagan's bodyguard-driver.

We ought to recognize that we share the same blame, and in order to move forward we must avoid taking sides on the basis of race. Fifty years have passed since those deadly racial disturbances but racial prejudice is alive and kicking among Guyanese. When will it end?

 

This will all come to an end when we have a leader like the late Dr. Walter Rodney who was murdered by the PNC.  I currently do not see a leader like him.

Last edited by Former Member

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