Repeating History

If the region has finally been certified as no longer in need of a weekly “lessons of history” speech, it must have been given very little publicity, and the rating known only in a few select quarters. The reasons could be listed in two broad categories: the risks involved in spoon-feeding, which, with due credit to benefactors, has hitherto been more akin to force-feeding, and the undeniably profitable position of being in possession of information potentially useful in future insider-trading.

The proposition needs to be stated in a slightly modified form, if only to set the record straight, because the “lessons of history” term would do only partial justice to the weekly clobbering selected “expansionists” and other such undesirable forces would usually get from figures possessed of comprehensive and detailed knowledge of human experience and human destiny.

It also needs to be stated with a disclaimer, which, in keeping with the taste of the times, must be worded as a cautionary note about the pitfalls of any entity, at any point of its existence, ignoring history – that is history and its complex unfolding as examined by those trained in the rigours science of history, and not propagated by pick-and-choose myth-making.

All of this, and much more, has been said with a lot more clarity and lot a less pomposity in the not-too-distant past, and frequently since, and could have been totally avoided but for certain terminological quirks surfacing every now and then despite a grand spectacle underway these days of restoring the world to its old glories.

Justified objections to such expressions could be mollified by a few examples of restoring the world to its new glories. For those interested, Vietnam may suffice as an example, and if that is too far back in time to be relevant, then Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, (and Libya, if anyone remembers or cares), may prove instructive. Quite an impressive record, has this international community. No wonder it comes so highly recommended.