We are immersed in the attempted destruction of our civilization. For those of you paying attention, radical Marxists – under the guise of racial justice – are in the throes of tearing down history, denigrating and destroying institutions, and trying to demean subsets of society based upon the color of their skin. Are we witnessing the smoldering embers of a fire that will consume Western civilization? Are we smart enough to both recognize and smother it before it becomes an inferno?
We are faced with a question: What would happen if the United States were to fall?
There is certainly a small minority who would cheer at such an occurrence, but these are the self-same folks who consider anything other than socialism abhorrent. And even when their Utopia fails, as it inevitably does, they merely shrug and suggest it was the “wrong type of socialism.”
Yet for the majority of Americans – indeed, the world – the failure of the most powerful nation on earth would be a devastation to the very concept of freedom. Remember, this is a nation founded not on race, religion, or politics, but on an ideal of liberty. Its whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
Would liberty reassert itself? Eventually, of course. For liberty is the lifeblood of our species and the quiet yearning that haunts our daydreams. Yet it would take generations to recapture what was lost, and the time in between would be one of tyranny, dictatorship, and misery for all.
Those who believe that the destruction of Western culture would result in an era of peace and equality are fools. They are blinded by their ideology … but they are persistent. It is the responsibility of all those who value genuine justice and freedom without chains to ensure that America does not become a cautionary tale.
This danger on the horizon brings to mind the past. The ruler of the first Persian Empire, or more accurately, the Achaemenid Empire, was Cyrus the Second, Cyrus the Great as he was commonly known. He reigned from 559–530 BC, and his rise was nothing less than extraordinary.
This is not the time, however, to talk of his almost mythical roots, his conquest, his claim to have been the first humanist ruler, but rather, we should look at his legacy.
The tomb of Cyrus still stands today in present-day Iran. It is, of course, of the utmost historical importance because it not only gives evidence outside of books that such a man existed, but it also ties together various historical threads. In its glory days, it was emblazoned with flowers and gifts and was the object of a mini-pilgrimage by Alexander the Great himself. We even have contemporaneous writings that describe this visit … and it is from these that we learn what was formerly written on Cyrus’ tomb.
One translation suggests:
Passer-by, I am Cyrus, who founded the Persian Empire, and was king of Asia. Grudge me not therefore this monument.
Another translation reads:
O man, whoever thou art, from wheresoever thou comest, for I know you shall come, I am Cyrus, who founded the Persian Empire. Grudge me not, therefore, this little earth that covers my body.
But perhaps the most powerful version from a source who was actually there is this:
Here I lie, Cyrus, King of Kings.
Does this remind you of anything? This idea of a king of kings, the most powerful figure in all the world, his tomb still standing but all the flowers, gifts, and even inscriptions work away by time, to me, it evokes the poetry of Percy Shelley, and his sonnet, “Ozymandias.” It goes like this:
I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the Desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
‘My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!’
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.
It’s a beautiful piece that really brings home what a cruel mistress time can be. From the greatest of the great to a wreck in the dessert, unknown and forgotten. Yet this poem was created as part of a friendly competition between a close colleague, Horace Smith. Presumably, the two men decided upon a topic and set to work crafting the best piece they could.
Clearly, Shelley’s work has become the more famous, but Smith’s is equally worthy, and perhaps displays a little more of the Casandra. It’s also named “Ozymandias,” and it goes like this:
In Egypt’s sandy silence, all alone,
Stands a gigantic Leg, which far off throws
The only shadow that the Desert knows:—
“I am great OZYMANDIAS,” saith the stone,
“The King of Kings; this mighty City shows
The wonders of my hand.”— The City’s gone,—
Naught but the Leg remaining to disclose
The site of this forgotten Babylon.
We wonder,—and some Hunter may express
Wonder like ours, when thro’ the wilderness
Where London stood, holding the Wolf in chace,
He meets some fragment huge, and stops to guess
What powerful but unrecorded race
Once dwelt in that annihilated place.
If this is not a warning, then what could it possibly be?
Powerful stuff, indeed. Perhaps the reason for Smith’s version not being as well known is that the very idea that London – without doubt, the greatest city in the world back in 1818 when these poems were both written – could ever become a hollow ruin of unrecognizable rubble, forgotten by history, was too much to contemplate. How could such a mighty land ever fall? What madness of ruler, natural plague, or disaster, could ever reduce a great civilization to dust and fragmented momentoes?
And yet we are here, today. The statues, the street names, the buildings, the anthem, the flag, the language, piece by piece, brick by brick, being taken apart and consigned not even to history, but to Orwell’s memory hole, never to be thought of or mentioned again.
It is becoming all too easy to see how our once mighty nations could be wiped from the historical record. Let us hope that in the next 2,000 years that some record remains, some remnant of the dream of freedom and liberty that is so personified in the United States survives to provide comfort or hope to generations to come.
The time to stop the great erasure is now, and the place to do it is here. Before all that is left is a broken statue of unknown origin, forgotten in the sands.
Read more from Mark Angelides.
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