Recently i read historical count of The Empire by Niall Furguson.
First thing first, Furguson is one of the best history teller where is weave the story around economics thus making it so much interesting.
Being an Indian born after 34 years of independence from Empire, it was a must read to understand the nuances of Empire and the place of India in it. And after reading it, i could only summarize that Story of Empire is nothing without repeated mention of the Cult i.e. India. India had a cult positioning for Britishers and still remain so, for many of British Origin. History of Empire is a 300 year History of
India as well. For any Indian reading this book is like getting a glimpse of Indian history thru the lenses of a Britishers who is on the other side of the fence.
Empire achieved the greatness when it acquired India in its fold otherwise it could have gone in the history as a nurturer of Official pirates looting shipments in Atlantic.
The ending line of the chapter is one of the most grueling and emotional ending of a history book i have ever read.
” In the end British sacrificed her empire to stop Germans, Japanese and Italians from keeping theirs. Did not that sacrifice along expunge all Empire’s other sins.”
This last and intriguing line is true in many senses, however, i feel Empire made the sacrifices to cover up its sins. The sins it imposed on the large swathes of the globe for centuries.
Mr. Furguson did a great and audacious job by playing the role of Devil’s Advocate. in his view Empire was world’s greatest modernising forces, however, this process of modernization killed the indigenous culture and small scale industries across the globe. Empire started as Pirates and continued its loot for centuries across globe.
Empire is responsible for establishing first ever concentration camp where 25000 Boer civilians died and many more such genocidal activities. and it will be sinful to forget about largest displacement of people across indo-pak border in 1947. And future generations will abhor the very fact that Empire every existed as it was responsible for creating Pakistan which is fundamentally supporting terrorism across world.
Its winning side which writes the future history the way it suits them to cover up their wrong doings.
Anyways, Mr. Furguson, History will never expunge your esteem empire from the sins, brutality and massacres.