The Nation

opinion

Smaller
Larger

Kipling's playbook still in use

Re: "Coup is neither good or bad", Letters, June 12.

In order to justify the coup, Khun Songdej quoted Rudyard Kipling's poem: "East is East and West is West and never the twain shall meet."

I'd like to contribute a little more about British author Kipling.

He blatantly rationalised imperialism, saying it directly benefited the conquered and that white men had nothing to gain by it. In his notorious poem "The White Man's Burden", he said it was an obligation of Westerners to bring the "half-devil and half-child" up to European standard and to "serve your captives' need". (In plain English, take them out of caves, clothe them, civilise them, baptise them and take their lands.)

Amen.

Somsak Pola

Samut Prakan


Comments conditions

Users are solely responsible for their comments.We reserve the right to remove any comment and revoke posting rights for any reason withou prior notice.