'Forgotten lesson of history' written by Mr Farook Ahmed as published in the Daily Observer on October 28, 2015 is indeed a good read in rich vocabulary for which the writer deserves appreciation. My response to the article pertinently confines in few aspects of his narrative only, which is, metaphorically, like icing the cake in some layers which the writer has meticulously cooked for the discerning readers.
The article depicts a clear picture of the degree of cruelty and savagery that a human could inflict on other humans indiscriminately. Referring to Temujin --- a son of a Chieftain of the Mongols, a sect of people who lived in the high lands to the south of Lake Baikal --- historically known as Genghis Kahn (1162-1227), a famous warrior-ruler and one of the greatest conquerors the world has ever known, Mr. Farook lucidly gave a brief run-down of the harrowing account of Genghis' savagery. The writer said, "When death approached Genghis Kahn, he wished to be buried in a very secret place so that no one could ever locate his grave. His last wish was obeyed. He was clandestinely buried in such a secret place that his tomb is still undiscovered and unknown to the whole world to save him from the rage and revulsion of the people upon whom he was a veritable curse."
To add to Mr. Farook Ahmed's brief information on cruelties of Genghis, this is to mention at this point that when Genghis Kahn set out on more ambitious expedition, he won his first victory over the Chinese whose Great Wall was unable to stop him. When Herat, Afghanistan and Khwarzem rose in revolt, Genghis Khan pursued his implacable revenge against the royal house of Khwarzem and other cities for a week in a most fiendish manner and said to have killed over 1.5 million. Organization, discipline, mobility and ruthlessness of purpose were the fundamental factors in his military success. Massacres of defeated population, with resulted terror, were weapons he regularly used.
When Genghis died in 1227, his empire stretched from China to right across Asia and Europe for its western frontier was the river Dnieper in southern Russia. With his valour, gallantry and ferocity, and a blood thirsty sword in hand on horse-back, Genghis was gone and decimated like bubbles and foams of the surge of the waves of history in cosmic time, but his act of cruelty and savagery behind the shadow of his formidable chivalry remains a fresh from generations to generations in human psyche and further remains as food for thought for all men of mind of the coming days.
As Genghis was buried in unmarked grave in a secret location, he had possibly a funeral rite for him without a speech. Had he been interred with a funeral rite with pomp of grandeur, perhaps a close aide of him like Mark Antony of the Shakespearian drama of Julius Caesar would rise and say, "...the evil that men do lives after them. The good is oft interred with their bones. So let it be with..." With his great legacy of cruelty and savagery, Genghis left behind him his able successors, his grandsons Halaku Kahn and Kublai Khan who were equally atrocious conqueror-rulers and raged the city of Baghdad and burnt the great library of Alexandria to ashes. Legend has it, in one of the conquests; Genghis Khan blew off the tip of the nose of the great Sphinx lies in the Egyptian desert near the Pyramids of Giza (8 miles south west of Cairo) by the strong sway of his sword thus living the great Sphinx still in deformity. After long years, ghosts of Genghis and Halaku with savagery in the garb of Taliban, surfaced when Taliban Fanatics stormed and blew the largest statue of Buddha in Bamyan province, Afghanistan a couple of years ago despite world-wide voice of protest and indignation against the vile act.
Mr Fraook Ahmed's narrative, on account of cruelty of Adolf Hitler, is revealing. It is quite stupendous to think that a young man like Adolf Hitler with a creative mind and ability to absorbing in fine arts, paintings and music in his early age could turn into the nastiest dictator in the contemporary history. It is no denying a fact that after the First World War, through the provisions of Versai Pact, Germany's back was pushed to the walls in all humiliation. It is often said that in order to take revenge of the defeat of the First World War, Hitler with all sound and fury took to his feet and went in all frenzy to conquer and change the face of the world. History always takes the side of the victors and not the vanquished. If the fortune and victory of Second World War would ever smile on Hitler and Mussolini, than the face of the world would be different from now and the history would have been written in different language and fashion. Thanks God, it did not happen.
Through a humiliating defeat which led Hitler to shoot in his head in the Berlin's strong bunker, Hitler's cruelty, particularly killing of millions Jews in the holocaust and grabbing most of the European countries including Poland in 3 days and a big power like France in 7 days and other Europeans nations in one day time in his blitzkrieg dispensation, unearthed before the rest of the world with shaken conscious as to how atrocious and monstrous the man Hitler could have been. Hitler's name and cruelty are perhaps synonymous to concentration and extermination camps, still standing as living witness of horror and Hitler's atrocity and killing machine. I have had the occasion of visiting Auschwitz, the biggest and infamous concentration and extermination camp in Poland, where I have witnessed the remnants of different apparatuses of horror of Hitler's atrocity, including the killing machine like Gas Chamber and Grill Oven where live human bodies were grilled and roasted to the sadistic pleasure of the Nazi beasts in human shape. With great horror, I witnessed and turned my eyes away from the samples of soaps and other articles made from the essence of human fats extracted from living men in excruciating pain before annihilation in the gas chamber or the crucible of burning oven.
Mr Farook Ahmed's portrayal of Saddam Hossain and Moammar Gaddafi as only heartless and acrimonious men with all brutality without making any assessment mention of their noble works these two dictators did in their lifetime for their people seems to be a myopic observation and goes in line with propaganda and vile publicity the western media unleashed after their fall.
Iraq and Libya were the two countries in the whole Arab world where these two dictators ruled, stood like oasis in the blistering desert sands of kingdoms and Sheikhdoms with inequality of justice and medieval ruling dispensation in practice. Through the benevolent dictatorial rule over the years, both Saddam and Gaddafi took their respective countries to road to prosperity by all social and economic indexes like education, housing, healthcare and overall human development. Both the dictators made their countries as secular modern state with equal justice by uniting hundred of nomadic clans under the single roof of modern states. They nationalized the oil resources and spent the money for guaranteeing better lives for their people. In doing so, both the dictators came under the rage and fury of the western world and stood defiant against the red-eyes to protect their national interests.
History witnesses articulately that it was the American administration that once took Saddam Hossain to their great confidence and pushed him into a long 8 years of internecine war with Iran by enriching his arsenal with chemical weapons and other deadly war-machine with a view to capturing Iraq's rich oil fields. Saddam turned enemy to American when he defied the dictation of American administration. Similar things happened with Gaddafi when he came under the cloud of Lockerbie plane crush incidence and was brought to his knees with economic sanctions after sanctions which made the entire country economically crippled. Gaddafi's sanctions were lifted when the western world diffused his nuclear plan programme and he became dear to his western friends, in daggers concealed under their slip. Leaving aside his garb of arrogance, Gaddafi remained an ephemeral friend to the westerners till such time when he received Magrahi, the main suspect of Lockerbie bombing to his Palace after the later was released from the Scotland jail on health ground. Mr Farook Ahmed's narrative and claim on the cruelty and plundering of the country's wealth by Gaddafi does not testify the veracity of facts, because Gaddafi used to lead a personal life like a nomadic Arab in the tent in the lonely desert air leaving aside his presidential comfort in the Palace. Even after the death of Gaddafi in all humiliation in the hands of the mercenaries, no credible evidence was found against his personal integrity that Gaddafi plundered the wealth of the country like his paternal property. Rather there is clear evidence that the former British Prime Minister Tony Blair had received undeserved hospitality and bribe from Gaddafi toward normalization of relation between Gaddafi and the western world. Despite both Saddam and Gaddafi being dictators and strong men in their respective countries, there is no doubt that both the leaders were immensely popular among their people for their unflinching Arab nationalistic zeal and spirit. Their characters were abominably smeared by the Westerner's vile painting brush to create a pretext to grab their lands. The entire Arab world is now passing through the fire of hell after the overthrow of Saddam and Gaddafi, shock wave of which is engulfing the whole world with festering growth of fundamentalism and rise of Al-Qaida, IS and other militant outfits. Syria is now totally shattered and destabilized. Europe is now feeling the pinch under their shoes of unprecedented refugee exodus from Syria and other East African Arab states. Satirically dubbed as the 'poodle-dog' or 'lapdog' of George W. Bush, Tony Blair (read B-liar) recently admitted that Iraq attack was a big mistake which he perpetrated and which has destabilized the entire Arab world and threatened the global peace too in the larger perspective. Upon his having assigned with the job of emissary of peace in the Middle-east couple of years ago, one eminent Arab journalist made a remark that the appointment of Tony Blair as emissary of peace is tantamount to assigning the Roman Emperor Nero as the head of the country's fire service.
With all criminal records of war crimes and crime against humanity, George W Bush and Tony Blair were in fact the two vile persons who have deliberately destabilized the world by attacking Afghanistan and Iraq and killing half a million people indiscriminately like Hitler in the 20th century and Genghis Kahn, Halaku kahn and Kublai Kahn in the medieval era. These two men George W Bush and Tony Blair should be brought to justice. Contemporary world situation with monstrous economic and military power in the hands of the west do not, of course, suggest the possibility of such trial in near future, but it is sure that these two devils in human shape will leave with the hatred of the people brewing from within as biblical demon Gog & Magog as long as they are alive for the crime against humanity and after their death, future generation will whip and douse urine in their grave for unpardonable crime.
Mahbubar Rahman is a former civil servant