What was the British empire like?
Who were the elements (or miscreants) placed in the chain of command?
What was the mindset adopted and to achieve what (hidden) goals and objectives?
Triggered by the curiosity and generosity to bring forth the impartial fact, a widespread study and research were conducted across multiple islands and facts were crosschecked rigidly to unhide the raw truth.
As we sit and live in 2023 amid the new world order, the majority of Britons feel proud of the order of the British empire (imperialism) as they ruled (and roasted) the world.
Such an intrigue psyche has culminated in the book by acclaimed Harvard Historian Carolina Elkins and she has carefully and colourfully titled “Legacy Of Violence: A History of British Empire”.
Well, dear reader, the light the research in the book reflects may give us pangs of pain as the so-called “civilising mission” was simply a claim and cruel treatment was the underlying factor in the British empire.
There was a wilful document destruction and hagiographies directed towards specific ambitions.
Validating this statement made by Alexander Campbell in 1882, the book gives space to numerous accounts that took place under British rule around the world and had a domino effect.
- Wars and concentration camps in South Africa.
- The Irish War of Independence.
- Indian Mutiny (India’s first war of Independence or Muslim uprising against the British Rule as some see it)
- Morant Bay Rebellion in Jamaica.
- The Zionist uprising.
- Carribean Strikes.
- Emergency in Kenya, Malaya and Cyprus and the list goes on.
It also highlights the impeachment of Warren Hastings in the 18th century and the Mau Mau rebellion in the following century.
Verily a rich thick package of historical delights to those discerning for this.
Nevertheless, these events and the bloodshed are translated through rationalism.
Under the garb of liberalism, there was racism and when any clash broke out in colonies, it was termed as barbaric and thus unlawful.
Rudyard Kipling And John Stuart Mill In Spotlight:
The former considered the colony dwellers as “half-devil” and “half-child” while the latter favoured “paternal despotism” to negotiate (or to bicker) with them (or to simply crush).
As Hastings’ trial took place, Edmund Burke challenged British barbarism but his arguments were overpowered by the higher ambition of consolidating the empire to give the economy a facelift to tame rogue traders and to form a nationalist unit.
This way Robert Clive and Warren Hastings were projected as the crusaders of imperialism and the synchronized and well-planned transgression was taking place in real, but it was negated in theory and practice and the narrative of the welfare was a total collapse.
In the aftermath of mutiny, the Britons were terrified by the gruesome tales of attacks on white women while the rebels were placed before the blazing cannons and were blown into pieces.
Back in England, the air of stiff against the Indians was a clear negation of “civility” which Britishers claimed.
At every mile, the British (the book says so) pursued the policy of violence which was necessarily integral to their imperial mission.
In Kenya and Malaya, they established a draconian system and called it “redemptive” until the true picture of the magnitude of atrocities came to light.
Recently, elderly Kenyans who witnessed such barbarity have stepped forward to share their suffering.
Surprisingly, the contents of the book are unique in their own and we fail to find such accounts elsewhere and not even in the government records.
The book enlightens us that history has been undermined by the twisting the historical facts and that history cannot be changed by smashing the statues of monarchs alone.
Even though the empire is no longer functional and wields authority now still the Britons live by the idea of dominance and feel thrilled by it.
Or should we say, the present state of Joint States !! Not interestingly but significantly, in the neo-colonial world of the present times, the repressive and unjust practice continues before us.
Simply put, they resort to the British precedent of government machinery essentiality to justify their jurisdiction.
They adhere to the insane sanity of despotic rule to come down heavily on dissent and to domesticate native communities.
In final words, the author claims the order of “legalized lawlessness” to be one of the legacies of imperialism and this is the societal (as well as suicidal) aspect of the present times as the democratic guarantee of universal dignity and equality is elusive.
Now, dear reader, it’s up to you to decide and judge.