There's so much news on the news today, that it's hard to keep track of it all. Many Americans find themselves either willingly or unwillingly focused on news from the Middle East. Why not? War grabs headlines, and focuses our attention like almost nothing else.
For myself, I have been focusing on life, until very recently, when I began focusing on World War Two, as well as on the events occuring right now across the world. We might as well focus on World War One while we are at it, because World War Two was almost certainly a continuation of the first War to end all wars. Some people believe that the second World War was a direct result of uncompleted missions and expectations left over from World War One; in short, unfinished business resulting from going too far in some ways, and not nearly far enough in others.
I am beginning to believe that the hate, wars, and occurences in the Middle East partially stem from World War Two's unfinished business.
In the Twentieth Century, the world witnessed the German Nazis, the Russian communists, and the Japanese Shintos all with the same resultant ideologies; mainly that their way of life would bring peace to the world through world conquest and domination.
More recently, in the last part of the Twentieth Century, and this opening part of the Twenty-First, we see one ideology following its own resultant creed. Strangely enough, that creed does not differ one iota from Nazism, Communism, or Shintoism in its expected end game; world peace through conquest and domination. The ideology is Radical Islam.
There is another ideology which claims to fight for freedom, and up until this point, the aims of American Democracy have always been freedom not only for Americans, but for the world. It is true, however, that American Democracy does not have a sterling record. We cannot claim even near perfection in treating with our worldly neighbors, nor even in treating with our own; this last including but not limited to our native American Indians.
The two most talked about ideologies of our time, Radical Islam and American Democracy, have squared off, and tremors abroad and within speak of the possibilities of yet another world conflict, no matter how unlikely it may seem at any given point.
So I ask the question; What does World War Two have to do with the events of our time? I believe the Second War to End All Wars has much to do with these troubling moments in history. I believe that both Britain and America are if not wholly, then somewhat responsible for the plight of the vast majority of the Middle East, in that when World War Two was over, a large vacuum was left in place of what had once been almost solely British vassal states.
In the years following World War Two, Britain continued it's de-imperialization, and The Middle East, as much as any part of the world, felt the sting of the new policies of the Americans and British; that of supporting dictatorships in the Middle East, much as they had supported Stalin in Russia only to learn later that the mouth had bitten hard the hand that fed it.
There is so much history regarding the two world wars and the events following. Much of that history, including today's history, can be in many ways tied to the policies of post World War Two America and Britain, and to the work we left undone, and the people we left in the hands of dictators and less-than- humitarian leadership. I intend to learn as much as I can about the events of World War two and after, because I believe within those events lie many answers to the question we ask ourselves most often these days pertaining to the Middle East; Why?