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Several years ago, the renowned linguist and thinker, Noam Chomsky, asked me, point blank, as we were working on our book: "On Western Terrorism From Hiroshima to Drone Warfare":
"Do you think it is possible that most of Europeans really don't know about crimes their countries committed all over the world?"
"They don't know" They don't want to know" They make sure that they will never know," I replied.
That Europe and North America have been constructed on hundreds of millions of corpses of, what George Orwell used to call, un-people, is fairly well established and proven fact. But somehow it never entered the sub-consciousness of the white race which is inhabiting what we now call the West, but also many parts of the 'conquered' world, from Latin America, to Africa and Asia.
Horrors of the past are carefully softened by shock-absorbing academic jargon, when they are addressed at such institutions like Cambridge, Oxford or Sorbonne universities. Or they are belittled, even dismissed, by loud cheers and clicking of the glass, in the Europeans pubs.
It is not something that is mentioned directly in 'polite society'.
And yet, the topic is not only related to the terrible world history.
All that we are experiencing now, all over the world, is to some extent related to this past. From wars to plunder of the natural resources; from shameless 'regime changes', to fearless provocations of the West against Russia, China and Iran.
Even what people read and how they think has roots in colonialism, holocausts and slavery.
To even mention the topic cost many brave men and women their lives. Patrice Lumumba, who denounced colonialism, was murdered by the Brits and the U.S., without any scruples. President Sukarno was overthrown and imprisoned, until his death. So were many others.
Denouncing colonialism and crimes against humanity committed by the West; its kings, armies, religions, even common citizens, is a dangerous undertaking, often 'punishable' by death.
Yet crimes have been so monstrous, that regularly, great and brave people keep standing up and pointing fingers at Europe, the United States, and at the elites of the European stock, in South America and elsewhere.
So did, recently, a left-leaning President of Mexico, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO), who wrote a letter to King of Spain, Felipe VI, and to Pope Francis, demanding apology for the 'abuses that were committed during the conquest of Mexico.' He declared in Tabasco State, in front of an ancient pyramid:
"There were killings, impositions" The so-called conquest was carried out with the sword and the cross."
President Obrador triggered literally a storm, at home and abroad. Fierce national debate erupted among Mexican intellectuals, academics, public figures as well as common people.