What I Don’t See at the Revolution

March 7, 2011

By Christopher Hitchens

"When anatomizing revolutions, it always pays to consult the whiskered old veterans. Those trying to master a new language, wrote Karl Marx about the turmoil in France in the 19th century, invariably begin haltingly, by translating it back into the familiar tongue they already know. And with his colleague Friedrich Engels he defined a revolution as the midwife by whom the new society is born from the body of the old."

Read More (Vanity Fair)


Teresita said...

Mr Hitchens, I have learned so much from your thoughtful and fiery writings and talks. I thank you, sir, and wish you well.

Jeff Hazelwood said...

There was a NYT piece today hoping for the emergence of Arab "Mandela's." Will they emerge? Do they even exist? And perhaps, more practically, how long will they survive? My own hope would be for secular/moderate Islamic "La Fayette's" to emerge and put their shoulders to the coming power struggle without any personal ambitions...and, of course, for the man on the street to start to think for themselves and give up their foolish confidence in both charismatic political "great men" and apocalyptic mullahs... But, I fear what they'll get instead of a Mandela or a Gandhi is a Yegor Gaidar. I think we should be less worried about the rise of a new Caliphate than the quick ascension of a Pan-Arabic "Thugtocracy." If I had the stomach to gamble on human frailty, my money would be on a couple hundred black-hearted, unknown 22 year-olds, who in 10 years, will be trillionaire gangster oligarchs with massive offshore financial assets and a handful of globally-cached suitcase nukes bought from Russia or North Korea. I suspect that we'll soon be able to recognize them by the calculated and insincere noises they make about religious moderation, democracy and privatization...and by the excuses we make for the blood on their hands. This will be their playbook: http://www.hudson.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=publication_details&id=2091 Is today the day that the count down to Thugtocracy begins...

bart said...

While some folks are getting excited about women in Egypt trying to broaden their rights, I feel a bit pessimistic about their chances. Your VF article mentioned many reasons why this will be difficult to accomplish. But I really liked this line:

"This really is a new language: the language of civil society, in which the Arab world is almost completely unlettered and unversed."

What can we expect for women there? I'm not expecting a whole lot.

THP said...

It takes protesters to make a revolution, but it takes citizens to make democracy.

Guest said...

Good to hear from the holistic medicine crackpots.

Chris said...

Dan, a diet cannot kill cancer. You are foolish to believe so.

Dan Fiebiger said...

Chris, I just saw you 60 min. I'll tell you what I tell all the other health-challenged cancer-ridden people I've encountered. Stop feeling sorry for yourself, and do something USEFUL about it. You're not even 65 years old yet; you've got plenty of time if you get with it NOW.

Dump those quack doctors and and their "therapy" that does nothing and do the following:

Quit smoking and drinking entirely and forever NOW and go to the Max Gerson institute in San Diego and get on their nutrition program and you will get rid of your cancer and live another 30-ish years. Hundreds of thousands of "terminal" cancer patients have already done this and lived for decades more.

Get and see the following DVDs: "THE BEAUTIFUL TRUTH" and THE GERSON MIRACLE" for more details.

Then Google and investigate the Gerson Institute and go there and get with their program.

Don't listen to me and you will die a slow agonizing needless death.

There you go, You now have the info you need to live.


Christopher reads from Hitch-22: A Memoir