Ferguson, Missouri, to Gaza, Damascus and Sinjar

An online friend “Miss Marple” notes the similarities between the thuggery in Ferguson, Missouri and the depredations of the Middle East’s jihadi wild packs: I read a book by the historian Barbara Tuchman [A Distant Mirror. The Calmitous 14th Century] which theorized that the Hundred Years War was caused by a culture that was adolescent, because so many older people had died during the Black Plague. All of the nobles and rulers at that time were in their late teens and had not much guidance from older, calmer heads. That idea has remained with me ever since I read the book, and when I see crowds of angry young men, whether in the Middle East of urban America, I think about it. Adolescent cultures react emotionally, are disproportionately concerned with machismo and being respected, act on impulse, and have no long-term goals. I think there’s something to that. It is not, however, the only connection between the two places and events. Obama...(Read Full Article)

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