Not long ago, a Facebook friend threw up a storm of abuse because I oppose the dictatorship of Assad in Syria & also oppose all military intervention for or against him. He said it was a moralistic approach to politics which he held in contempt. Of course, his views led him to support Russian intervention, including the use of barrel bombs & white phosphorous.

Today, someone defending Russian intervention & Putin as ‘the greatest Russian leader since Stalin’ said: “Compassion is the worst type of hypnotism Scully. You have to have a stone heart to succeed in this damned earth.” To buttress his assertion he quoted Stalin: “The death of one man is tragic. The death of a million, a statistic.”

One could call this “the banality of evil” or even the evil of banality. Or even an idiot struggling to defend evil. It is truest to call it a shameful, despicable defense of militarism & barbarism. If you cannot tell the character of a regime by its crimes, then how should it be judged?