The doctoring of Churchill’s photo reflects the Left’s larger-scale attempt to doctor historical accounts with biased left-wing ideology.
The Left has a long and sordid history of rewriting historical narratives in order to promote its radical agenda. The late and infamous Howard Zinn was perhaps the most well known left-wing propagandist, but there are many others like him in academia, the media and politics.
I’m reminded of the Left’s attempt to rewrite the past so as to control the future because of a recent blog post by the esteemed Michael Ledeen.
Ledeen references a recent story in the London Telegraph, which shows the famous picture of Churchill now on display in a British museum. Churchill is without his trademark cigar. The cigar, you see, is no longer politically correct; and so it has been airbrushed out of the picture.
This may seem like no big deal. However, as Ledeen notes, it is indicative of a much bigger problem:
[O]ne that existed long before Soviet airbrushes and Reuters photoshops: the battle for control over the past.
He who writes history manipulates contemporary consciousness in order to affect the future. As Voltaire nicely put it, “History is a bag of tricks we play upon the dead.”
Which brings me to the central crisis in America today: increasingly, our people don’t know much of anything about the past.
Look at the history curricula at the top universities, and marvel, as I do, at the near-total lack of courses in military history. It’s been airbrushed out.
I can’t help believing that this is purposeful. The academic elites don’t want Americans to know that the history of man is basically the history of war.
Peace has many dangers, including the potentially fatal belief that all disputes can be negotiated.
Before conservatives can truly win politically, they first must recover America’s past. This will not be easy, given that the Left dominates the academy. But as Ronald Reagan once said, “facts are stubborn things.” America’s real history is irrepressible: It will not be denied; it will be heard; and conservatives must ensure that it is so.