Historian Eric Hobsbawm famously called the 20th century an “age of extremes”, one characterised by polarising ideological battles fought in the name of nationalism. Whether fascism, communism, or Western capitalism, Hobsbawm related how these ideologies transformed the political consensus, sparked global wars, and incurred an astonishing death toll.
The terrorists are winning. Why pretend otherwise? The crimes of Ankara and Berlin – where families sharing festive joy were deliberately targeted and murdered – should rightly shock and appal. Such atrocities are harbingers. Millions have now watched Mevlut Mert Altıntas, an off-duty police officer who murdered Russia’s ambassador to Turkey, ranting at the camera, a slick and staged political broadcast disseminated to a mass audience.
Every Christmas, Ryohei Ando gathers his family together for a holiday tradition. Just like their father did as a child, his two children will reach deep into a red-and-white bucket and pick out the best piece of fried chicken they can find.