1 thought on “Bottleneck at Thermopylae Pass

  1. This is a belated response to the comment http://www.summitlake.com?p=427&cpage=1#comment-732. It was posted by H.N. under the old, obsolete “write Us” page. H.N. takes us to task for a pro-West, anti-Persian spin on history. I replied privately to H.N. stating that a biased historical “spin” was certainly not my intention, as I took pains in the “Thermopylae” article to point out the positive contributions of the Persian culture of the era. I also lambasted Xerxes for an uncontrollable temper and his penchant for executing individuals or whole city-states for annoying him (according to Herodotus, who certainly might have harbored anti-Persian biases of his own). Persia was without a doubt a “slave state” for those who were brought before Xerxes as unrepentant non-compliants. However, Athens and Sparta were certainly NOT “free cities” (particularly Sparta) and both engaged in atrocities rivaling Xerxes’ in malevolence if not in scale. Though it fell far short of the modern concept of freedom in implementation and consistency, the Athenian idea of democracy lit a lamp that lasted throughout the ages. It is also worth reiterating that, were it not for cultivation of the science, writing and culture of the ancient Persia, the recovery of post-Roman, plague-ridden Dark Ages Europe might well have been delayed additional centuries.

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