I have to apologize. In my zeal to defend my own positions I rolled right pass an absolutely outrageous and actually quite disgusting comment in Ivins’ column. She writes:
For those of you who have not read Paris 1919, I recommend it highly. Roosevelt was anti-colonialist. That system was a great evil, a greater horror even than Nazism or Stalinism.
The contra-factual stuff about Roosevelt is just boring. But the suggestion that colonialism was a greater horror than Nazism or Stalinism is so stupid and so repugnant it really must be addressed. Does she know what she’s saying? Doesn’t she know how many tens of thousands of brave colonial troops fought side by side with the British against the Germans and the Japanese? And whereas there are many defenders of British colonialism – and other colonial regimes – I think she will have to look under a lot of rocks to find defenders of the death camps of the Holocaust. Considering that Nazism and Stalinism represented the very worst kind of colonialism, one wonders what it was about the Raj that Ivins considers worse than Stalin’s collectivization or the rape of Poland.
When you re-read her column it becomes clear that she just likes pointing out she read some books and saw some movies, it’s far less clear that she understood them.