Sir: Charles Hughes (Letters, 14 August) makes the wrong point: the August 1941 oil embargo against Japan was made at a time when it was already committing atrocities against its Asian neighbours. However, Mr Hughes might well have asked who forced Japan to abandon isolationism in the 1850s (the Americans) and who subsequently taught them to behave like imperialists (the Europeans).
The ills of the twentieth century should mainly be laid at the door of the West, because Western hegemony has impacted on and distorted every other culture for at least 200 years. From Cortes to the Amritsar massacre, the West has all manner of things to apologise for. Unfortunately, history is written by the victors and victors rarely apologise.
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