The Newtown Pentacle

Altissima quaeque flumina minimo sono labi

Archive for November 16th, 2015

another would

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Rain, cold, and darkness in today’s post.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

Holiday season is upon us, I fear. Already have I been compelled to reminisce with old friends, commiserate over drinks with acquaintances, and discuss plans with Our Lady of the Pentacle for winter holiday feasts. One has never had too much trouble maintaining long term relationships, as I am too lazy to go out and make new friends. Admissions of my curmudgeon like tendencies notwithstanding, the seasonal holidays seem important to people whom I will admit affection for, so I play the game but it feels as if my brain is wrapped up in cling film during this time of the year and that I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop.

The shoe did drop in Paris last Friday, a reminder of the realities of the “new normal” and that the Terror Wars continue to rage.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

It has long been my contention that the most dangerous collection of people on the planet are the Europeans. America, Russia, and China are the big kids on the block – of course – followed closely by the Japanese. Europe has been tamed for much of the last seventy five years, with their imperial cultures and natural tendency toward conflict and the subjugation of everybody else having been chastised down via the lessons learned during two world wars. Viewing Europe through a historical lens, the modern day residents of Eurasia’s western peninsular enjoy a level of security from conflict, freedom of conscience, and an enviable level of economic stability which their grandparents could only dream of. A lot of this is due to the fact that the United States has a gigantic military footprint in Europe, which has allowed the governments of the EU to spend their money on different things than tanks and fighter jets. The U.S. has always been pragmatic in this regard, as the lack of large standing armies in France and Germany (call them the Normans and the Teutons, or the Gauls and the Visigoths, or the Romans and the… you get the idea) is considered a guarantor that the two ancient enemies won’t throw down unexpectedly and start a Third World War if the United States is standing between them.

The attacks on Paris, I fear, might have roused a great beast from its slumber, and the U.S. can’t do anything about getting this one back in the cage.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

The French, in particular, have a lousy military reputation, which is based on the thorough and scientific attempts of the German military to degrade and annihilate them in the early 20th century. The word “decimate” would indicate that the Germans killed one out of every ten French soldiers during the world wars, but it’s actually closer to four out of ten. Two lost generations put France on a path towards a peaceful existence throughout the latter half of the 20th, and the first decade and a half of the 21st centuries.

In the United States, we joke abut the French tanks which can only go in reverse, but that’s a dangerous bit of historical subterfuge which does not acknowledge the history of France. In terms of the last 2,000 years, really right up to 1915, you are talking about the country which possessed the most powerful army in history. If you started a land war with France, you lost – ask the English about that one, or the Spanish, or the Italians. It took the Kaiser’s Wehrmacht to change that, and even then, the French cost the Germans hundreds of thousands of casualties.

Long story short, you don’t screw around with the French, and you especially don’t want to piss them off.

– photo by Mitch Waxman

My fear, this holiday season, is that the European monster has awoken. In the same way that the American season of military restraint was shattered by the attacks of September 11th, the Europeans are likely to assume a more aggressive posture. Remember, the clowns who shot up a night club and concert venue, and who lit off suicide vests in Paris killed civilians who numbered in the hundreds. By European military standard, this is a failure. When Europeans decide to start killing civilians, they set up factories to do so. They use drumroll artillery tactics to suppress and destroy whole cities, employ weapons of mass destruction, and generally give no shits about committing genocide.

2016 is going to be an ugly year, I think, and our world is descending into the sewer. That’s why, despite my antipathy towards teary eyed holiday gatherings, I’ll gladly attend and play along with the season. You never know when it’s the last time you’ll see someone, so rather than crying out “Bah” or “humbug” this year – raise a glass with friends and family I say. Life’s too short.

“follow” me on Twitter- @newtownpentacle

Written by Mitch Waxman

November 16, 2015 at 1:00 pm

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