Ignore history at the World's peril!

I think it was Winston Churchill who said the best argument against democracy was a five minute conversation with an average voter.  I guess he was referring to-stupidity or lack of imagination, maybe they're the same thing?

A recent episode on 15th January of BBC's 'Question Time' left me with a very similar feeling.  And also left me with the sour taste that I get often these days when watching television-that I am in fact watching a form of blatant propaganda.  That I am being sold an idea without foundation that is accepted as fact uncritically and is then foisted upon me by particularised use of language comprising linguistic signifiers that purport to be established world views.  These signifiers refer to 'the terrorists,' 'the insurgents', 'jihadists', or to the 'economy'  and to 'economic data' as if it refers to something concretised and actual whereas in fact it refers to wholly imaginary concepts devised at several levels removed for inclusion in a script.
The panel comprised:
Anna Soubry MP, Douglas Alexander MP, Baroness Brinton, Mehdi Hasan and David Starkey, chaired as ever by the wonderful David Dimblebly.
The question was to do with the murder of the journalists at Charlie Hebdo in Paris and what startled me was the almost incredible absence of the historical narrative that led us to these present conditions.

the is the real timeline:

  • the Russian Invasion of Afghanistan
  • The arming and support, by western powers, of the Mujahideen
  • The invasion of Iraq 1
  • The attempted capture in Somalia of General Aideed
  • The invasion of Iraq 2 Desert Storm
  • The continuing existence, illegally, of Guantanamo Bay
  • The invasion of Afghanistan by the Americans and their alllies primarily UK.
  • Abu Graib Prison and the sexual humiliation of young muslims by American guards some of whom were female
  • The Bush Cabinet's legitimisation of torture and illegal rendition of 'suspects' with British security services cooperation.
  • The ongoing American support for the illegal occupation and settlement of Palestinian Land by the State of Israel
  • Assassinations by drone

Do we not understand that, by any marker of morality or acceptable diplomacy the American and UK governments have themselves behaved as terrorists?  That is, specifically creating fear and terror in the hearts and minds of entire populations.  But without the narrative of history we have no explanation for the madness that besieges us.

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