Inhumanity knows no boundaries and the cruelty inflicted from human to human has only changed with the implements and the methods used to inflict it over the centuries. Britain currently purports to stand for honour and justice and humanitarian decency in the face of unfolding catastrophes in the Middle East.
Is it just the case that it’s our turn to stand on the moral high ground now we have lost our Empire and a lot of our influence around the world now that the American Empire is close to its final death throws? The feeling is that soon it will join Britain (and France, Rome, Sweden, Russia, Turkey and every other country that used to have an empire) and just become the last in a long list. It was only just 100 years ago during the Boer war in South Africa Britain invented the concentration camp and killed tens of thousands of women and children whom they imprisoned in appalling conditions. It was only the same amount of time ago that Britain was actively exporting huge quantities of opium to China, killing tens and thousands of its population as a consequence.
I know it’s always difficult to compare ‘the sins of the fathers’ but it shouldn’t be forgotten when we are talking about humanity that everybody has a cross to bear and Assad’s gassing his own people is just the latest episode of madness.
I can only think that if a formula could evolve that would strengthen the hand of the United Nations that’s going to be the only way forward. Isn’t it ironic, given the current Syrian situation, that what we really need is for all the nations of the world to experience a ‘road to Damascus’ and change our whole attitude to how we treat our neighbours – that is, if there’s anything left of Damascus to walk towards !by