The suddenness with which the Soviet Empire disintegrated came as a complete surprise to sovietologists. With 20-20 hindsight, many attributed the Soviet collapse to its impossible economy: a whopping $400 billion were spent on (unproductive) military hardware in the 1980s. That decade witnessed the presidency of Ronald Reagan. Some say that by trying to compete with the Reagan defense budget—remember Star Wars?—the Kremlin ran the Soviet Union into bankruptcy.
Others emphasize the Soviet’s long drawn out war in Afghanistan, which undermined the Russian economy as well as Russian morale. Mention should also be made of glasnost as having hastened the disintegration of the Communist superpower.
All these explanations are plausible, but allow me to offer an entirely different one—one relevant to the Arab-Jewish conflict. » Continue reading “Being Silent About Evil”