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Thursday, August 11, 2005

The Perils of prevarication

It is almost depressing when considering how people of today are so apt at repeating the same mistakes of the people of yesteryear. It is like a bad run of TV repeats. This week's offering: Munich 1938. Of course, its actually be running for quite some time now, but this week it has actually managed to penetrate the headlines a little more.

I speak of course of this business of the Iranian nuclear reactors, and the EU's shameful play-acting and connivance to this point. A sorry, sordid tale of prevarication upon prevarication. The final price will be ours to pay, and it will be all the steeper for our spinelessness.

In 1938 of course this course of action was given a name: appeasement, and many thought it an honourable course. However a decent man Chamberlain might have been the subsequent blood of millions is somewhat on his hands. One does not buy freedom, or security, only a temporary safety. This was true in the ninth century, when Norse raiders soon discovered that lords and kings would pay and pay again for just a season's grace. It was not Mercia or Frankia which became safe though, it was Wessex, the nut that refused to be cracked. The difference is plain. By the early tenth century the lords of Essex were busily on the offensive, reclaiming lost lands. Meanwhile the King of Frankia was surrendering Neustria, the land that is now known as Normandy. There are other historical examples, should one wish to seek them. On the cruel stage of this world, to prevaricate is to court disaster, to sow a seed for a frightful harvest.

Let us hope the Three Idiots wise up soon, for it will not be them or their generation that settles the bill. It will be the rest of us.

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