“The most brilliant propagandist technique will yield no success unless one fundamental principle is borne in mind constantly – it must confine itself to a few points and repeat them over and over” –
The rise of Greta Thunberg into global prominence with her melodramatic ‘how dare you!’ speech on climate change has sparked an interesting and important discussion in several quarters of the society. The Left has often used children to further their propaganda since it serves multiple purposes. Firstly, the criticism of the cause suddenly becomes the targeting of a child by vicious adults, as it happened with Greta. Secondly, when children are involved, the argument tends to appeal to the most basic parently emotions that one would assume majority adults have.
Something similar has been happening in India all along – a dastardly attempt to anecdotally use children to further a dangerous Goebbels propaganda not just against political opponents but Hindus at large.
It first started with anecdotes about nieces and nephews talking politics and condemning the Modi government for something or the other.
In 2017, journalist Faye D Souza spoke of her 5-year-old niece and how she allegedly condemned the Yogi government in Uttar Pradesh after the child died in a government hospital in Gorakhpur.
Then, in 2017 itself, Atishi Marlen, the AAP leader spoke of her 9-year-old niece talk about BJP objecting to paper ballot elections.
While using children to further a political agenda is despicable, it is far less dangerous than using children to demonise an entire community.
In 2017, Saba Naqvi claimed that her 8-year-old nephew was asked by a classmate if he is Pakistani because ‘they say’ he is tall and fair. She then asked whether this was an insult or idiocy.
The insinuation of this tweet is rather strange. Firstly, Saba tries to insinuate that Hindu children assume that all Muslims are by default Pakistanis. She then asserts that Muslims are all tall and fair, as are all Pakistanis, reiterating the dangerous narrative that Muslims are somehow the ‘superior race’. After peddling anecdotal ‘secular-baby-bigot-baby’ story, Saba Naqvi asks whether what her nephew was asked was ‘insult or idiocy’, essentially claiming the Muslim victimhood card.
The ‘secular-baby-bigot-baby’ argument has now made a comeback. Fake news peddler and propagandist who masquerades as a journalist, Rohini Singh, tweeted an entire thread where apparently, at a 5-year-old’s birthday party, some ‘little Zoya’ was asked to ‘go back to her country’ to which she said she ‘is not Pakistani’.
He didn’t say it in anger. Just randomly. Little Zoya said she isn’t Pakistani. She didn’t care and didn’t appear too perturbed. She was too small to understand what was said. So was he. And then 3 other kids joined in like kids usually do. They insisted Zoya was Pakistani (2/n)
— Rohini Singh (@rohini_sgh) 4 October 2019
This ‘secular-baby-bigot-baby’ was then converted into an article, akin to atrocity literature, in the leftist propaganda portal, The Wire.
Rohini Singh in the article claimed that several other people had messaged her after her thread and narrated several other such stories.
She writes, “One person told me that his nephew had become withdrawn after a kid in class informed others to not be friends with him because he eats beef”.
In another story, she said a mother told her that her ‘little girl’ was told that she would be locked in a room forever. According to Rohini, that was an “obvious reference” to NRC.
She, of course, goes further. She also claims that a secular baby was asked by a bigot baby to go to Pakistan. These kids were evidently in Kindergarten.
It is interesting that the ‘Liberals’ think it is believable that KG children would be discussing India and Pakistan or that toddlers would be discussing NRC.
In a rather transparent move, Rohini Singh, in the conclusion to her article goes on to chastise ‘Hindu parents’ specifically. She writes, “But parents like me – and yes, I mean Hindu parents in particular – need to be aware of the fact that young children are picking up the ignorance, prejudice and hatred they see in society, on television – and, regrettably in many homes – and are carrying this virus into our schools and classrooms. The kids are not at fault. But we can’t absolve ourselves of the blame”.
While we might laugh off these asinine anecdotes, considering the source of it and the obvious yarn-spinning that is being done here merely to settle political animosity against Narendra Modi and insinuate that India has become some sort of a militantly theological state, the ramifications of such ‘anecdotes’ are serious.. and dangerous.
What needs to be kept in mind is the fact that there is no proof of babies being radicalised out of the blue moon in Modi’s India. Interestingly, these stories seem to happen only with the ‘Liberal’ congregation that have rued the demise of the mysterious ‘idea of India’ after the rise of Narendra Modi. Modi, on his part, managed to unite Hindus largely to vote for him, and the ‘Liberals’ on their part began to blur the line between demonising Modi and demonising Hindus altogether.
Joseph Goebbels was Nazi politician and Reich Minister of Propaganda of Nazi Germany. He was one of Adolf Hitler’s closest and most devoted associates and was known for his deep antisemitism. He advocated progressively harsher discrimination, including the extermination of the Jews in the Holocaust.
Goebbels propaganda was one of the large contributing factors to the genocide of Jews in Nazi Germany and also, the main reason why the Genocide ended up resonating with so many people converting them, essentially, into Nazis and racist genocidal maniacs.
Goebbels constantly vilified and demonised the Jews and actively propagated for their genocide. In fact, he attributed the decay of Germany and the ethos it apparently stood for large, and mainly to the Jews.
One notices the similarities in the manner in which Jews were vilified by Goebbels and what the ‘Liberals’ are doing today to Hindus, and it is difficult to escape a distinct chill that runs down one’s spine.
The Liberals not only are using children to further their propaganda against Hindus, but they also seem to be, knowingly or just by virtue of natural hate, following the Goebbels principles of propaganda to the letter.
Goebbels principles say that ‘Propagandist must have access to intelligence concerning events and public opinion’. The ‘Liberals’ had that in abundance for decades and hence we saw the constant, subliminal vilification of India. However, after PM Modi took over, the “access” dried up as did the avenues to manipulate data. In such a scenario, the “liberals” seem to have taken to creating or faking their “access” to intelligence concerning public opinion. They fake ‘Hate Crime trackers’ that are then considered the gospel truth to prove that Hindus are becoming terrorists and torturing Muslims.
Another interesting principle of Goebbels was that “propaganda must evoke the interest of an audience and must be transmitted through an attention-getting communications medium”. In modern-day, Twitter and Leftist portals like The Wire are probably the best ‘attention-getting communications medium’ and stories that use children as tools to further their hate against Hindus is bound to evoke not only interest but outrage. Who would want a child being victimised, after all?
Here is what Goebbels said further:
Propaganda must label events and people with distinctive phrases or slogans.
- They must evoke desired responses which the audience previously possesses
- They must be capable of being easily learned
- They must be utilized again and again, but only in appropriate situations
- They must be boomerang-proof
The ‘bigot-baby-secular-baby’ story seems to follow all of the propaganda tenets that Goebbels used to demonise the Jews. Hindus are essentially non-confrontational and would naturally express disgust at children being targeted for their religion without tearing through the veil of propaganda. The underlying message of these stories are rather simple – Hindu children are learning to demonise Muslim children. The words used in these stories are simple and easy to relate to. While the media goes on and on about ‘Beef politics’ and ‘NRC’, the stories peddle the same narrative and label all Hindus anti-Muslims and soon, the mere support for the Hindu core cause of cow-protection or the national interest cause for deporting illegal Muslim immigrants labels one ‘anti-Muslim’ without the merits of the cause being discussed at all. And, of course, the bigot-baby-secular-baby stories are repeated in various forms as is evidenced.
The most dangerous Goebbels propaganda principle that these stories seem to follow, however, is the following:
Propaganda must facilitate the displacement of aggression by specifying the targets for hatred.
This principle essentially says that the propaganda must be crafted as such, that the aggression among the people must be directed to specific targets for hatred. What the ‘bigot-baby-secular-baby’ story does, is just that. it gives the Muslim population of the country, which has been fed the false victimhood pill a target to displace their hatred – the Hindus.
What Muslim parent would not be enraged by these stories? What Muslim mother would not want retribution from Hindus for their children, evidently being demonised for their faith? Even if this has not happened to their own children, would Muslims not feel further victimised by these false stories? And given how sections of the Muslim community have often “expressed” their hatred, how does one think the Muslim community would react? By writing op-eds? Or by indulging in senseless violence?
Essentially, these stories paint a target on the back of Hindus and more dangerously, Hindus children, much like Goebbels painted a target on the back of Jews right before the Holocaust that resulted in the mindless and systematic murder of Jews in Nazi Germany. The only difference here is probably that in Germany, it was the then government that sanctioned the genocide, while here, it is the Liberal establishment that is baying for blood and playing the role of Goebbels in the Nazi-esque Liberal ecosystem that rather see Hindus murdered and maimed than see power slip away from their hands as Modi continues to reign.
Editor, OpIndia.com since October 2017