In the 1960s, poised beneath the uncertain nuclear stalemate between the USA and USSR, there continued to be hope for universal peace — the hoped-for product of World War II. The First World War’s “never again!” notion had gone to hell with the rise of Bolshevism, the world-wide Depression, and the subsequent rise of Fascism in various formats the world over. World War II made a monstrous desert of much of the earth and a pause ensued — a hostile one, which began to be amended in the 60s and 70s.
At my age, I long for the age of nuclear standoff, when there was still a hope in Hell that Russians and Americans might figure out how to get along. I have to remind myself that to be fond of such a time is to be unfair to those who had suffered in the Gulag and otherwise behind the Iron Curtain. Still, what fond hopes.
But this is life, and friction governs. Universally, the molecules and animals are all itchy and will not be patient, fair or just. Reason goes far to make weapons, only a small way to create peace. Mao Tse-Tung (the fat old spider) ran China into the ground; Pol Pot arose in Cambodia to patriotically murder and destroy his own people; old Russian fascism (Bolshevism, Stalinism, etc.) got its comeuppance in Afghanistan (little did Americans supporting Muslim resistance realize who they were abetting in their covert operations). No, not freedom but new fascisms reveal themselves everywhere, and nowhere so well as in their various forms in the Middle East. Even Israel, child of Jews, a whole people homeless and abused for centuries, succumbed to the Rule of Brutality, and in defending itself became a conqueror and colonizer of others’ lands, aping the success of their own Nazi persecutors and the bile and xenophobia of their racist Arab opponents.
What a world.