30 August 2010

Now you see them... now you don't....

Sadly, today's International Day of the Disappeared doesn't involve the sorts of disappearances one might see in a magic show. Unlike other days which focus attention on the plights of those who live under brutal regimes or on the fates of those killed by such regimes, this day commemorates those who... just aren't. In introductory comments to her Blawg Review #279, Mirriam Seddiq discussed her own family's experience:
As a child, I knew about the disappearances of loved ones in Afghanistan who were taken and tortured by the Soviets, or sent for re-education in the U.S.S.R. I watched the movie the Winds of War about World War II. There was a scene where the Nazi's took old men, women, mothers and children and put them in a ditch and then shot them. I sat stunned. I cried. I asked my mother "did they really do that?" She said "they are doing that in Afghanistan right now." We think my great uncle was dropped out of an airplane alive by the Soviets. We do not know. He disappeared.
This week's Blawg Review discusses disappearances of people, of reason, and of civility. Highlights include trials of juveniles in military courts abroad, imprisonment of juveniles here at home, and consideration of the core functions of criminal defense.

After last week's International Day for the Rememberance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition and this week's International Day of the Disappeared, I for one am a little apprehensive about what next week's Blawg Review #280 might hold. Ron Coleman will do the honors at his always-wonderful Likelihood of Confusion blog.

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