Afterword

ThimphuTech was the first technology blog in Bhutan. We started writing it in 2009, just as broadband and mobile internet started to take off. (Although internet in Bhutan was launched in 1999, it was either super-slow or super-expensive, and was only used by a selected few).

In the blog, we wrote about technology and food, but also about plenty of other stuff. The blog became popular and influential in Bhutan. A companion bi-weekly column -- Ask Boaz -- was published for many years in the Kuensel, Bhutan's national newspaper. (The complete Kuensel columns are available as an ebook, Blogging with Dragons).

We stopped updating the blog when we left Bhutan in 2014, but the information within the posts can still prove useful, and thus we decided to keep it online.

We thank all our readers.
Tashi Delek,
Boaz & Galit.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Business Bhutan's article on Hitler: a total mess up

A short "biography" of Adolf Hitler, together with three photos, appeared in today's edition of Business Bhutan, under the "Back in the Past" section. See the snapshots below.

After reading a couple of sentences from this piece, I realized that this was either a bad April Fools' Day joke (it's not), or that this text was written by someone with some serious language issues (maybe), or, most likely, this article is the output of automatic translation software such as Google Translate from an unreliable source.


According to Hitler's short bio-sketch, he "acquired an absorption in backroom", fought in the "First Apple War" as he "was answer to anatomical and busy" and finally "dead himself" after he "affiliated his mistress". There is no mention of Nazism, the 4 crore people who died as a result of Hitler's policies and actions, or the Holocaust. By the way, a quick search on Google found an obscure Indian blog which contained identical text (indianrocksstar.blogspot.com).

The fact that some people in India and Pakistan have an unhealthy obsession with Adolf Hitler still surprises many outside SE Asia, but it is a well-documented phenomenon (see, for example, Dear friend Hitler and India or The Führer Cult: Germans Cringe at Hitler's Popularity in Pakistan). Some of these sentiments have unfortunately climbed up the Himalayas, and I still cringe whenever I see the Indian editions of Mein Kampf (the sale of which is restricted in many countries) sold freely in Thimphu bookstores, never with a front note (as required by some countries).

A newspaper committed to providing historical essays to the public should be commended. Business Bhutan could have used the opportunity to correct the local misconceptions regarding what Hitler is most known for -- the atrocities of World War II. It could have pointed the global consensus that there is nothing admirable about Hitler or his actions. But the newspaper failed miserably.

We hope Business Bhutan's bizarre article will lead our readers to explore more reliable sources about Hitler, for example the BBC History website:
Adolf Hitler, military and political leader of Germany 1933 - 1945, launched World War Two and bears responsibility for the deaths of millions, including six million Jewish people in the Nazi genocide.


A snapshot from Business Bhutan, March 31, 2012

A snapshot from Business Bhutan, March 31, 2012