Brutal as it might be, there has been a beneficial side to conquest,
particularly to future generations of conquered people.
You might think that’s awful to say, but think about where England
had it not been conquered by the Roman Empire. Why? The British were, as
Julius Caesar said, “barbarians.” The Romans through conquest, starting
B.C., brought a far superior culture, education and skills to England.
Romans also brought superior road construction, military tactics and
Four centuries later, when the Romans left, England underwent a
retrogression. In 1066, the Normans invaded England. Again, England
benefited by imports from a superior culture. As a result of skills
by being a “victim” of conquest, England became the world’s most
nation — so much so that it became possible to say, “The sun never sets
the British Empire.”
Other peoples have benefited from conquest. Conquest and colonization
unquestionably brought suffering to sub-Saharan Africans. But the
European institutions, skills and tools brought benefits, just as the
conquest earlier brought benefits to England. Europeans introduced
wheeled vehicles, medicine, railroads, written language, and law and
as well as other fundamental tools of more advanced societies.
Professor Thomas Sowell points out in his book “Conquest and
that, in addition to improvements in living standards directly
to Europeans, the cessation of tribal warfare as a result of domination
meant that not only would whites seize and bring vast amounts of land in
countries like Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) under cultivation, but Africans
cultivated more land as well. Law and order also meant that Lebanese and
Indians would migrate to Africa, bringing with them their economic
Under colonialism, and for a brief period after independence,
Africa was self-sufficient in food.
Today, Africa is a mass importer of food. According to the Food and
Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, 19 African countries —
like Burundi, Niger, Somalia, Tanzania and Uganda — are on the brink of
starvation, or euphemistically put, “facing
exceptional food emergencies.” Not on the list are Zimbabwe and South
Africa, but in a few years they will be. You might wonder why. Let’s
In an attempt to stay in power, Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe is
inciting blacks to take land from white farmers. Blacks are not only
land but raping, shooting and intimidating white farmers. In the wake of
increasing violence, and government complicity, the Commercial Farmers
has warned 6,000 white families to evacuate their farms as fast as they
and go to “safe” areas. Down the road, many Zimbabwean whites will
that the only really safe area is another country. Whites in South
will reach the same conclusion.
What’s going on in Zimbabwe is part of what has been a general
Africa and elsewhere: The most productive people are forced to flee. Not
only do white Africans flee, but the most productive black Africans
well. Black Africans do well when they come to the United States and
while their brethren at home perish.
Guess what makes it possible for African leaders to keep their people
misery? It’s foreign aid, and IMF and World Bank loans that make
available to corrupt leaders so they can buy cronies, maintain a
and stay in power. Instead of members of America’s black leadership
and worrying about the Confederate flag, they might use that energy and
resources to march on Africa’s embassies just as they marched on the
African Embassy during the 1980s — but maybe for America’s black
it’s only the color of the tyrant that matters.