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  • The End of Colonialism as an Excuse

    Posted by Carl from Chicago on January 30th, 2011 (All posts by )

    One item that has gone relatively un-mentioned with the revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt is that the issue of “colonialism” has finally been thrown into the dustbin.

    As any viewer of this blog knows, the left and the third world have traditionally blamed virtually all of their woes on the colonialist powers or the United States which came in the vacuum after the colonialist powers left (less often mentioned is the actions of the USSR, since it does not fit their narrative). Either we supported the wrong side, gave them inappropriate borders, or authorized coups that took out the men that would have changed history, but it was always our collective fault.

    The Arab world today is predominantly younger, with a very high percentage of their population under 25 years old. The population that is under 40 is even larger; and you’d have to be 40 or over to even remember much of life under the Shah of Iran or even Sadat. The youth in these countries, the broadest segment of the population, knows nothing but the current fossilized dictators that have ruled uninterruptedly during the course of their entire life.

    Thus the leaders can blame Israel and the US and the colonialists but it buys them nothing because the streets know that these countries haven’t been significant actors during their lifetimes. All they know is 1) a small elite band of the rich and powerful control the state 2) secret police and thugs control their lives should they step out of line or demonstrate 3) nothing much is changing, except that it is getting worse with higher prices for basics and low prospects for formal employment.

    No one knows the future – the forces of the dictatorships could re-assert control, the radical Islamic factions could take power and then hold it violently, or some sort of freer society could emerge. But at last we aren’t hearing the same old noise that this is all the fault of events that occurred decades ago.

     

    3 Responses to “The End of Colonialism as an Excuse”

    1. Robert Schwartz Says:

      Yes, but it still will get them points in salons of the bien pensant in Western countries. So, until such time, if ever, that the Left either wises up (forget about that), or, disappears (in our lifetime and during our days, speedily and soon, we pray, Lord), they will keep saying it. And because these words will never pass Arab lips:

      “Men at some time are masters of their fates:
      The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars,
      But in ourselves, that we are underlings.”

    2. Cromagnum Says:

      I wonder if it is really part the Colonialization by the Caliphate?

      The opposite of what the journolists are saying, because that seems to be a theme recently
      (See ‘President Opposite’ by Elizabeth Scalia)

      The Cairo speech was an attempt to place the spark plug, awaiting a pre-planned ignition.
      The news reports seem geared to focus of the violence, but if there truly is 17 million people in Cairo, then its really a small area of unrest.

      Ask the question: “Quo bene”?

    3. Shannon Love Says:

      Cromagnum,

      The news reports seem geared to focus of the violence, but if there truly is 17 million people in Cairo, then its really a small area of unrest.

      People in the 3rd world are not as mobile as people in America or even Europe. People can’t flood into the cities from the rural areas. People in rural areas and small towns form much smaller masses of demonstrators and make for an easier target of suppression. Most major demonstrations/riots/uprisings in the 3rd world are limited to one or two major urban areas with most of the country going on as usual. Regiems rise and fall owing to urban rioters but almost never for rural/small-town ones.

      This is actually a major stumbling block for progress in most places, especially in agriculture. Leaders fear the urban populations more than the rural so they use price fixing to keep food prices low which cripples agricultural development.

      So, even though the Egyptian riots might seem to involve a relatively small percentage of the population, about 20% in this case, that 20% is in the right place to make a difference.