Now most of us, say 99.9% of us at a guess where, until he died at the ripe old age of 95 unaware of the existence of this evil rabid old Marxist historian. I was anyway and was amazed that the BBC devoted some five minutes of the Ten o'clock news to lamenting his demise. In the following days the newspapers where full of obituaries and Ed Milliband himself could not but mention that our Eric was ......'a man passionate about his politics and a great friend of my family.'
Well, yes, Eric Hobsbawn was 'passionate about his politics, so passionate in fact that he cheerfully admitted when asked in a TV interview '.........in 1934 millions of people are dying in the Soviet experiment. If you had known that , would it have made any difference to you at the time? to your commitment ? to being a communist?'
Hobsbawn replied; 'probably not'
Now that is really someone being 'passionate' about politics- so passionate that you are cheerfully willing to condemn millions to their death on the oft chance that a social experiment will work. Actually Hobsbrawn's 'passion' rather reminds me of the 'passion' of the Nazis who indulged in genocide. This putrid man is lauded as a great historian and thinker and yet he could and did somehow manage to write a history of the 20th century called 'the Age of Extremes 1914 -91' without mentioning the purges, the gulags or the famines which his Soviet heroes inflicted on their subjects. How can such a man receive such eulogies from so many when the central plank of his thinking was not just flawed but spawned such evil and suffering? How can Ed Milliband get away with lauding the memory of a man who condoned mass slaughter and ethnic cleansing on such a massive scale? I don't know I wish someone would enlighten me.