Francis Fukuyama's presumptuous 1989 essay, The End of History, announced that the struggle to establish which ideology would lead the world-"liberal democracy" or "communism"-was over. With the fall of the Soviet Union, he claimed, "democracy" had won.
It's now clear that Fukuyama got it wrong. It's not "the end of history" we have been witnessing, but "the end of civility"-on both the national and international fronts.
The belief that people and nations should behave decently is vanishing before our eyes. Take, for example, the attitude toward the Geneva Conventions and their supplementary protocols, signed between 1864 and 1977.
As the world knows all too well, …