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Empire’s Long, Stained Fingers

JH has up a good post about how the Assyrian empire justified its imperial aggression. The only problem is the anachronism “This is not to say that the Assyrians were completely cynical, sitting in their cigar-smoke filled backrooms stroking their mustaches and thinking up lies to justify their greed.” The Assyrian Man surely had means of revealing privilege—sexing up the temple whores or gathering together the slaves in a show of power—that do not depend upon Columbus’s discovery of tobacco in the Caribbean?

(On the other hand, the anachronism also proves JH’s point that conquering justifies itself. Not everyone loved tobacco in its first global century, much less its fourth, but ever since its migration to the Old World, it has been one of modern empires’ primary cash crops.)



FYI, Grehan’s essay (click on “everyone” above) is a fascinating narrative about tobacco’s popularization in the Middle East.

…and I’m off to AR—and offline for the rest of the week. happy txgiving, folks!

w00t w00t