23 January, 2021

Nana Sahib And The Texas Detour

Visions of 'empire' pervade the coalition air. But it's born of force, not persuasion.

Nana Sahib And The Texas Detour
From The New Yorker

During the past few months, much has been said and written on the subject of a 'new American Empire'. I believe this term to be a misnomer. If the Iraq war is to be seen as an imperial venture, then the project is neither new nor purely American. What President Bush likes to call the 'coalition of the willing' is dominated after all by America, Britain and Australia—three English-speaking countries whose allegiances are rooted not just in a shared culture and common institutions but also in a shared history of territorial expansion. Seen in this light, the alignment is only the newest phase in the evolution of the most potent political force of the last two centuries: the Anglophone Empire. It is important to recognise this, especially for us Indians, for our history has been formed as much by the institutions of this Empire as by a long tradition of struggle against them.

I live in New York now and for me the September 11 attacks and their aftermath were filled with disquieting historical resonances. I was vividly reminded, for example, of...



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