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Because something which in ancient history is similar to today.
History repeats but we don't seem to be able to learn from our mistakes. Some also think that past actions can be predictors of future events-see probability and the roll of a dice.
Knowing our ancestors can give us an incite as to how and why we became as we are.
A study of past events can lead to better outcomes in the future - military tactics are partly based on this premise.
If we study each step of a process we can go back to see where we made vital mistakes - medical progress, thalidomide - crop development, can't remember this specific case but some cross cultivation failed badly and in a deadly manner (could have been done safely with gene splitting).
To be continued.................
again and again until we get it right.