Wars never end; the shooting might—I repeat, might—stop, but battles continue with words, intrigue, and slights.
English television programming would be gutted without repeated stories of past wars. Although friendship with Germany is mentioned in reports on membership in the European Union, citizens are not allowed to forget what they did in 1914 (when the cousins squabbled) or 1940 (even if the friendship of the future king with the German dictator is covered up). And, militarism is not allowed to die or even fade, as seen in the “royal” family traipsing around in uniforms (even the women). What would the English do without a war drum to beat. Recent reports claim that the prime minister wants NATO to send troops to Ukraine, despite the fact that this country is not a member of the alliance. This guy must not have read history (or watched local television) of World War Two (or One). Perhaps, he is posturing, as did his predecessor, to impress the United States, where the cons (short for neo-con, but also for criminal) are beating the same old drums.
Clauswitz wrote that war is policy by other means. Nowadays, policy is war by any means. After all, the laws of capitalism demand that the sales weapons and munitions must continue unabated. And, self-proclaimed statesmen must posture from the safety of their clubs and offices far removed from danger.
There is a saying about blood being thicker than water. Although this makes little sense, I guess it means that relatives stick closer together than friends. History has proven that this is not always the case. One statistic that comes to mind is the number of murders and gunshot wounds of relatives in the United States.
This phrase came to mind when watching a trailer for a program on World War I. This is the one hundredth anniversary of a really big and stupid war (unlike some the more-recent small and stupid wars...which were big for all involved, but you get the point).
The word thick has different definitions. It can mean solid or viscous. It can also mean lacking intelligent or stupid. I pick the later definition to plug into the above saying about thick blood. The principle players in World War I were related. The King of England, the Kaiser of Germany, and the Tsar of Russia were first cousins. They had played together as children and met in later years. The wife of the Tsar was a German princess. The father of the King was German. Instead of sticking together, they squabbled and cost the lives of millions and led to the suffering of many millions. The Second World War is almost certainly a consequence of this thick (lacking intelligence) blood.
Anyone that owns an iPhone, noticed a newspaper masthead, or glanced at an old-fashioned calendar will have noticed that today is March 19. That means little, if anything, for most people. For residents of the region in which I reside--those with a knowledge of history and time to read today's local newspaper--will recall that on this day the city of Hanau was bombed by Allied forcers attempting to irritate an Austrian named Adolph Hitler.
If one tours the city, one cannot help by notice a church near the marketplace. It has been partially restored, but the main section is left without a roof. Even the dullest minds might pause to think about what might have happened to the roof. It was bombed on the this day during World War II. The unrestored church is meant to act as a reminder to the danger of following a dictator. I like to remind my wife on what happens to those that incur the wrath of Americans...
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.