The Sword Is Mightier Than the Pen

I don’t think we have written about the article by Professor Bruce Gilley of Portland State University titled “The Case For Colonialism,” which was published in Third World Quarterly. I haven’t read the article, but this is the abstract. It sounds as though the article is in line with my own thinking on the subject. While it certainly had its dark side–e.g., pretty much anything involving Belgium–European colonialism was, on the whole, a positive force:

For the last 100 years, Western colonialism has had a bad name. It is high time to question this orthodoxy. Western colonialism was, as a general rule, both objectively beneficial and subjectively legitimate in most of the places where it was found, using realistic measures of those concepts. The countries that embraced their colonial inheritance, by and large, did better than those that spurned it. Anti-colonial ideology imposed grave harms on subject peoples and continues to thwart sustained development and a fruitful encounter with modernity in many places. Colonialism can be recovered by weak and fragile states today in three ways: by reclaiming colonial modes of governance; by recolonising some areas; and by creating new Western colonies from scratch.

As you can imagine, the article caused howls of outrage. Gilley requested that it be withdrawn, but Third World Quarterly initially declined to delete it, citing “the scholarly record.” But the publication has now knuckled under to threats of violence, as reported by Legal Insurrection:

The former link for the essay now contains this explanation:

This Viewpoint essay has been withdrawn at the request of the academic journal editor, and in agreement with the author of the essay. Following a number of complaints, Taylor & Francis conducted a thorough investigation into the peer review process on this article. Whilst this clearly demonstrated the essay had undergone double-blind peer review, in line with the journal’s editorial policy, the journal editor has subsequently received serious and credible threats of personal violence. These threats are linked to the publication of this essay. As the publisher, we must take this seriously. Taylor & Francis has a strong and supportive duty of care to all our academic editorial teams, and this is why we are withdrawing this essay.

Do our liberal friends want to know what fascism looks like? This is what fascism looks like.

Via Stephen Green at InstaPundit.

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