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Old 10-06-2012, 05:38 PM   #46
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Default Re: Stalin's famines and the British Empire's famines

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Originally Posted by abraxas21 View Post
if british rule was a so great, i guess ghandi wouldn't be famous.
Famous for his racism in Africa and his support of the caste system.
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Old 10-06-2012, 05:45 PM   #47
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Default Re: Stalin's famines and the British Empire's famines

Abraxas and Buddyholly are online laughing boxes. They never run out of good jokes.

Last edited by Gagsquet : 10-06-2012 at 05:52 PM.
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Old 10-06-2012, 05:54 PM   #48
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Default Re: Stalin's famines and the British Empire's famines

shut up, gagsquet. you just spend around all day talking BS in every forum
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Old 10-06-2012, 06:05 PM   #49
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Default Re: Stalin's famines and the British Empire's famines

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Famous for his racism in Africa and his support of the caste system.
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""Grandaddy?''

Once again the rapier-witted abraxas unleashes a withering put-down.
cool comebacks

nothing to say on churchill's defense?
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Old 10-06-2012, 07:04 PM   #50
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Default Re: Stalin's famines and the British Empire's famines

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nothing to say on churchill's defense?
I have commented on Churchill's heroic defense of Western Civilization already.
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Old 10-06-2012, 07:10 PM   #51
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Default Re: Stalin's famines and the British Empire's famines

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Indeed, but when you win the wars you fight, and your empire ends up being dismantled relatively peacefully, there's no need for the populace at large to confront and come to terms with the horrible things done by their leaders in their name. You don't need a truth and reconciliation commission, so you don't have one - you keep moving forward and, apart from in fusty academic texts that few people read, never look at the reality of what was done, only the triumphalist soundbites that are used to reinforce the national identity.

The average Britain has no idea that it was we who invented the concentration camp, which is pretty shameful.
Well, I think one of the reasons why those things don't go beyond the circles of academia is that people don't really like history and its complexity, they like to draw overly simplified versions of history so they can throw those "facts" at each other during arguments.
And we academics are interested in precisely not doing that.

I think that even saying the British "invented concentration camps" is probably a simplification. You need to define first what constitutes a concentration camp, etc... I guess lots of countries and people have used things that could be described as concentration camps, but they will all differ from one another in a way...

Look at this post, people are interested in throwing things at each others' faces, some are trying to show that Churchill was a racist imperialist monster, others that he was the saviour of the world...
What's the point?
I'm studying Northern Ireland, and the British have done a lot of very questionable things in Northern Ireland. But what I'm interested in is not to "count points" and say "OK the British have done this, booo, that's very bad, they're horrible people and should be ashamed" or, "it's all the fault of the IRA and Irish Republicans, if they had not been so troublesome the British wouldn't have needed to do what they did"...
The point is to understand a situation in all its complexity, to try and understand the plurality of points of view and experiences. Of course that makes it very difficult to have a clear-cut opinion on history. But I don't think it's very useful or beneficial in any way to pass judgements on history.
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Old 10-06-2012, 07:48 PM   #52
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Default Re: Stalin's famines and the British Empire's famines

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I think that even saying the British "invented concentration camps" is probably a simplification. You need to define first what constitutes a concentration camp, etc... I guess lots of countries and people have used things that could be described as concentration camps, but they will all differ from one another in a way...
Apparently the Spanish were the first, anyway, in Cuba.

But ''concentration camp'' since WWII has come more to mean death camps for the elimination of sectors of society, rather than camps to contain a hostile public in wartime. Extermination was not the idea, although many perished through disease. The camps the British or Spanish invented were not comparable the camps the Nazis developed.
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Old 10-07-2012, 11:28 AM   #53
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Default Re: Stalin's famines and the British Empire's famines

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Apparently the Spanish were the first, anyway, in Cuba.

But ''concentration camp'' since WWII has come more to mean death camps for the elimination of sectors of society, rather than camps to contain a hostile public in wartime. Extermination was not the idea, although many perished through disease. The camps the British or Spanish invented were not comparable the camps the Nazis developed.
Well yes that's exactly what I mean. In history, nothing is really "comparable" to anything else. And at the same time, of course you can draw parallels and you do it all the time. But it's important to always be aware that there are never two situations that are exactly alike, no matter how you'd like to compare them (one classic example is Ireland and Palestine... They love to draw that parallel all the time, and I mean, it's not even necessary to point out how different the two situations are).

Inventions of all kinds are also subjected to the same kind of simplification, especially when countries try to argue about who invented what. Of course every scientist builds on what's been done before, so it's impossible to give someone all the credit for "discovering" something. Same thing goes for "bad inventions", except in that case, no one wants to take responsibility for them.
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