- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 5, 2001

"A civilization builds slowly, and along comes some brute to stamp it out," writes David Pryce-Jones in the May 28 issue of National Review. Sometimes the brutes think they are building a new civilization, as did Mao Tse-tung when he destroyed the ancient walls of Chinas Forbidden City and innumerable pagodas and monuments along the Yangtze.
In our lifetime the brutes are almost too numerous to catalog. The Khmer Rouge used Angkor Wat for a military base. Romanian communist Nicolae Ceausescu destroyed the historic quarters of Bucharest. In the former Yugoslavia, Croats destroyed the 16th century bridge at Mostar. Serbs destroyed the Begova Mosque. Vukovar, an unspoiled Hapsburg town was reduced to a ruin.
Palestinians burned the seventh-century Jericho synagogue. Hafez Assad of Syria destroyed the Sunni city of Hama. Saddam Hussein destroyed the Kuwaiti National Museum, perhaps the worlds finest Islamic collection. Beirut and its historic center are gone. Christian Coptic churches and villages have been cleansed from the Egyptian landscape. The Taliban blew to pieces gigantic Buddhist statues 15 centuries old. Hindu extremists in India destroyed the Ayodhya Mosque built in the 16th century.
The communists and World War II reduced Russia to "a desert strewn with wreckages." The war also obliterated the great historic cities of Warsaw, Danzig, Dresden, Hamburg and Koenigsberg and countless palaces, country houses, ancient bridges, scientific and artistic collections and national libraries. As David Pryce-Jones puts it, bang goes the past of country after country.
When the Taliban blew up the Buddhist statues, the atrocity was front-page news. It is surprising that "cultural criminal" has not been established as a counterpart to "war criminal" and cultural destroyers brought to trial. Wiping out a peoples past is the same as rubbing out a people.
But on second thought it is not surprising that "cultural criminal" remains an undesignated offense. For all the physical damage Mr. Pryce-Jones marshals, it is a drop in the bucket compared to the cultural damage done by our universities. If the World Court sent out a call for cultural criminals, huge chunks of the academic faculties and administrators in the U.S., U.K., Canada, and European countries would have to be indicted.
The two functions of education are literacy and enculturation. People live in a culture the way they live in their bodies. Take away their culture, and they die as a people.
Our culture has been taken away by countless academic scribblers deconstructionists, multiculturalists, postmodernists, critical race theorists, feminists more "ists" than you want to hear. All together they have destroyed meaning and reduced the greatness of Western civilization to an "evil, white, racist, sexist, homophobic hegemonic order."
Anything good in Western civilization is said to have been stolen from Black Africa including the English language. Professors claim that Egyptians were blacks and that Aristotle stole his ideas from the Egyptian library in Alexandria. The "distinguished scholars" who make these claims are not sufficiently learned to know that the library was built after the death of Aristotle. One know-nothing, Martin Bernal, at Cornell (of course) ignores the Mycenaen, Achaean, Dorian and Ionian wells of ancient Greek culture in order to attribute the origins of Greek culture to Africa.
The white kids who attend Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Cornell, Stanford, Michigan, University of California, Duke, wherever, are enculturated into a pathology of guilt over evils allegedly perpetrated by their forebears. They are brainwashed into accepting unequal rights and limitations on their speech as atonements for the sins of their fathers. Those who resist are sentenced to "sensitivity training," accused of various harassment crimes, and expelled.
Propaganda, not the interplay of ideas, rules the universities. It is routine for speakers who challenge the lies to be driven from the podium, as was Ann Coulter recently at that "great" university, Cornell. Judging from David Horowitzs account of the affair, Cornell has a large number of students whose role models are Nazi Brownshirts.
Academics have buried Western civilization under a mountain of lies. The great books are not burned, but they are discredited with the charge that the great thinkers in the past were apologists for a "white hegemonic order."
The erasing of our culture progresses rapidly. Several years ago it came to light that students in an Illinois public school were being taught that the ancient Egyptians were blacks who flew among the pyramids until whites arrived and killed the blacks who could fly. The reasons given for teaching this nonsense was to improve the self-esteem of black children and to explain to them why they dont live in the big houses.

Paul Craig Roberts is a columnist for The Washington Times and is nationally syndicated.

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