Middle East apocalypse

November 28, 2007

I happened on this 55-year old quote today, from a man long dead — legendary British diplomat Sir Reader Bullard — which really struck me:

It is through the Middle East — Cairo, Baghdad and the Arab shore of the Persian Gulf — that the great airlines run connecting Europe with India, Australia and the Far East. Ancient and modern commerce join when the pipeline which carries oil from Iraq to the Mediterranean forks at the Euphrates and embraces along the coast, a territory which was in ancient times Phoenecia. Not far away, in Palestine, is the traditional site of Armageddon, where those who read prophecies into the Book of Revelation look for a battle to be waged in which evil will finally be overthrown. If an ideological war will satisfy them, let them know it has begun in the Middle East already.

Sir Reader Bullard
Britain and the Middle East
Hutchinson’s University Library, 1952

Something to ponder in the wake of Annapolis. Maybe.

Interestingly, Bullard described himself, at the time of his diplomatic posting to Stalin’s Soviet Union, in 1930, as a ‘former rebel and socialist’. Gosh, there were some of us around even then.


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