Monday, February 14, 2005

Commemorating Dresden

Last Sunday's commemoration of the bombing of Dresden is a stark reminder that 60 years on, historical revisionism is as much a threat as holocaust revisionism.

Western liberals bend over backwards to commemorate the holocaust but are less willing to commemorate the fighting to free Europe of tyranny. Increasingly, the allied bombing campaign is likened to the carpet bombing of the Luftwaffe, and with each anniversary, the tendency is to commemorate all the war dead rather than the allied victims. To do so is to forget the purpose of the war. After five years of fighting, the allies were brutalised by Nazi terror, and had suffered tremendous loss of life. Their objective was to to end the war by all means necessary, and in such circumstances, they can be forgiven for their mistakes.

Preventing genocide isn't just about remembering the Holocaust, it also means having the moral courage to go to war and risk the civilian loss of life this entails. It's a risk Americans are still willing to take. Europeans continue to put their faith in the UN, who stood by whilst 7000 died at Srebrenica, who allowed 800,000 Tutsis to be murdered in Rwanda, and who can't decide whether Darfur constitutes genocide.

In 60 years, it seems little has changed...