My comments on the article We need to talk about empire: a conversation about Britain’s history is overdue by Matthew Syed in The Sunday Times, 14 June 2020.
Imperialism has many aspects and is not limited to race relations.
The imperial view still permeates the world politics. The current world order is an outcome of WWII.
It is useful to compare the Brexiteers’ outrage at the loss of sovereignty to the EU and the decisions made in Yalta regarding Eastern Europe. Forced resettlement, arbitrary redrawing of borders and giving a free hand to the genocidal regime of the Soviet Union was no problem for the UK elites. God forbid, however, if even a tiny fraction of something similar were to happen to the UK!
At the end of the world war, when the enormity of crimes was so obvious, the American and British elites showed that preserving their own narrowly perceived short-term interests was far more important to them than the acceptance that every human being and every human life is valuable. National mythologies were constructed around the fight against Nazism, while Communism gained the status of an acceptable and perhaps even inevitable genocide. The disastrous and illegal deal at Yalta was signed by Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin. It was later presented as inevitable and the only possibility.
Yes, the leaders of the so-called ‘free world’ facilitated the loss of my family members’ rightful citizenship, their rights, and their imprisonment in Communist concentration camps, and confiscation of their property. Ethnic cleansing was viewed as acceptable and logical.
Later on they proceeded to lecture people from other countries on the principles of democracy, while denying the self-rule and sovereignty in various parts of the world.
However, decisions that seemed good or reasonable in the UK or in the United States in the short term, in the long term were disastrous also to them.
The Communists of Soviet Union and Eastern Europe have brilliantly exploited this selective and delusional approach to justice and sovereignty.