The End of Gentleness

In 21st-century Afghanistan (and the rest of the world):

When Richard the Lionheart displayed brute strength by breaking an iron bar with his sword, Saladin’s delicately sharp scimitar countered it by slicing a silk handkerchief in two. What has been lost is the desire to believe in and take pride in Saladin’s gentleness.

From The Wasted Vigil, by Nadeem Aslam (published 2008)

Published in: on June 6, 2010 at 5:44 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Progress

Prescient words from the memoirs of Julius Caesar, as related by Nadeem Aslam in the context of modern-day Afghanistan:

The immense power of the druids was the weakness of the Celtic polity. No nation that is ruled by priests drawing their authority from supernatural sanctions is capable of true progress.

From The Wasted Vigil, by Nadeem Aslam (published 2008).

Published in: on June 6, 2010 at 2:50 pm  Leave a Comment  
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