Like the Roman Empire in the early fifth century, Europe has allowed its defenses to crumble…Poor, poor Paris. Killed by complacency

BOSTON GLOBE
Paris and the fall of Rome
by Niall Ferguson
November 16, 2015

I am not going to repeat what you have already read or heard. I am not going to say that what happened in Paris on Friday night was unprecedented horror, for it was not. I am not going to say that the world stands with France, for it is a hollow phrase. Nor am I going to applaud President Hollande’s pledge of “pitiless” vengeance, for I do not believe it. I am, instead, going to tell you that this is exactly how civilizations fall. Here is how Edward Gibbon described the Goths’ sack of Rome in August 410 AD“In the hour of savage license, when every passion was inflamed, and every restraint was removed . . . a cruel slaughter was made of the Romans; and . . . the streets of the city were filled with dead bodies . . . Whenever the Barbarians were provoked by opposition, they extended the promiscuous massacre to the feeble, the innocent, and the helpless . . .”  Now, does that not describe the scenes we witnessed in Paris on Friday night? READ MORE

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