Saturday, January 8, 2022

The Meaning of the Term: “Triumph of the West”

When the Western historians describe the last three hundred years, when the Western empires became pre-eminent, they tend to use the phrase “the triumph of the West”. What do they mean by the word “triumph”? The word “triumph” originated in Ancient Rome. The Romans did not use this word to indicate their victory—they used it to indicate the utter subjugation and annihilation of the losing side. The Roman triumph was the celebration of a successful plunder and genocide. 

The victorious Roman generals used to organize spectacular parades called “Roman triumph” in the streets of Rome. On the day of his triumph, the Roman general wore a crown of laurel and a solid purple, gold-embroidered triumphal toga picta. In imitation of the most powerful Roman God Jupiter, his face was painted red. He rode in a four-horse chariot through the streets of Rome, followed by his army, captives, and the spoils of his war. The Roman masses lined both sides of the streets. They cheered their general and his soldiers, and berated and taunted the captives. When the Roman triumph reached its climax, the captives were executed in view of the Roman elite and the masses.

When the Western historians talk about the triumph of the West, they are not talking about the West’s victories in the last three hundred years—they are celebrating the utter subjugation and annihilation of the old cultures in the Americas and elsewhere.

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