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← Trouble in paradise: Maldives and Islamic extremism

PERSON's Avatar Jump to comment 26 by PERSON

The Maldives were until recenty a dictatorship run by the torturing administration of Pres. Mamoon Abdul Gayoom from 1978 to 2008, who used the 2004 tsunami as an opportunity to clear all residents of various of the islands so they could be converted into resort complexes. There was a backlash, and he was ousted, but has very recently (8th February 2012) retaken power in an apparent coup.

The reason I mention this is that there is often a relationship between religions and oppressive regimes, as in Iran, wartime Germany, Italy and Japan, Saudi Arabia, Mubarak's Egypt (with an alliance between the MB, the security forces and parts of the army persisting even now) and so on.

Extremism can be used to keep people in line directly through its authoritarian aspect, or as a bogey man that people can be persuaded they need to be protected from, which also seemingly justifies a variety of oppressive measures.

I'm not clear when these measures were introduced: in the 1998 constitution, the 2008 one or earlier. A primary feature of the 2008 constitution was the creation of a more independent judiciary, but I'd think it's character would depend on the group(s) working against the regime, which I haven't a clear picture of.

Comment 22 by huzonfurst

Before the tsunami, that was used as an excuse for relocating people to facilitate tourism-oriented development projects.

Sun, 26 Feb 2012 21:21:27 UTC | #922200