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Brit Historian Andrew Roberts – Hero Or Villain?

In History, India on July 30, 2009 at 8:24 pm

Johann Hari calls out the Brit celebration of historian Andrew Roberts, who had this to say of the 1919 Jalianwala Bagh Massacre of hundreds of unarmed Indians.

Yet Dyer has, at last, found a defender – Andrew Roberts. In his book A History Of The English-Speaking Peoples Since 1900, he says that after Dyer shot down the peaceful crowd, “[i]t was not necessary for another shot to be fired throughout the entire region”. He later comments: “Today’s reactions to Dyer’s deed are of course uniformly damning … but if the Amritsar district, Punjab region or southern India generally had carried on in revolt, many more than 379 people would have lost their lives.”

It is an extraordinary rationalisation for killing women and children in cold blood, and rejected by virtually all other historians. It was only after I exposed this passage that Roberts finally said: “I have never approved of massacring civilians.”


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