Saturday 4th of February 2023

even the best napoleons made mistakes......

IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO RELATE HISTORY BLOW BY BLOW. SO HISTORIANS WILL CHOOSE IMPORTANT MOMENTS AND DECISIVE ACTS. AS “WE” (THE WESTERN WORLD — THE OCCIDENT) BUILD UP TOWARDS A WAR AGAINST RUSSIA, WE (GUS LEONISKY AND HIS PUB MATES) HAVE BEEN TRYING TO EXPOSE THE HYPOCRISY OF POLITICS — MAINLY THAT OF THE AMERICAN POLITICS.

KEN BURNS — DIRECTOR OF THE U.S. AND THE HOLOCAUST — EXPRESSES THIS THUS:

 

History cannot be looked at in isolation. While we rightly celebrate American ideals of democracy and our history as a nation of immigrants, we must also grapple with the fact that American institutions and policies, like segregation and the brutal treatment of indigenous populations, were influential in Hitler’s Germany. And it cannot be denied that, although we accepted more refugees than any other sovereign nation, America could have done so much more to help the millions of desperate people fleeing Nazi persecution.

 

THIS IS WHY SINCE 2006, WE HAVE EXPRESSED THAT AMERICA WAS THE MOST SUCCESSFUL COUNTRY SO FAR BECAUSE IT WAS THE MOST DECEITFUL. BY THIS WE MEAN THE U.S. ADMINISTRATION NOT SO MUCH THE AMERICAN PEOPLE WHO ARE CONNED INTO BELIEVING IN THEIR “EXCEPTIONALISM”. THIS  BELIEF TENDS TO CREATE NUTCASES WHO WILL COMMIT MASS MURDER AND BRAVE HEROES ALIKE.

HERE WE POINT OUT TO AN EXTRACT OF AN ARTICLE OF THE SMITHSONIAN THAT COULD APPEAR SLIGHTLY SARCASTIC, THOUGH HISTORIANS ARE NO CLOWNS.

 

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The foremost motive that the British, Austrians, Prussians, Russians and lesser powers publicly gave for declaring war was that Napoleon couldn’t be trusted to keep the peace. As one British member of Parliament put it, peace “must always be uncertain with such a man, and...whilst he reigns, would require a constant armament, and hostile preparations more intolerable than war itself.” That may have been true during his imperial period, but this time around Napoleon’s behavior suggested that the Allies could have taken him at his word.

He told his council that he had renounced any dream of reconstituting the empire and that “henceforth the happiness and the consolidation” of France “shall be the object of all my thoughts.” He refrained from taking measures against anyone who had betrayed him the previous year. “Of all that individuals have done, written or said since the taking of Paris,” he proclaimed, “I shall forever remain ignorant.” He immediately set about instituting a new liberal constitution incorporating trial by jury, freedom of speech and a bicameral legislature that curtailed some of his own powers; it was written by the former opposition politician Benjamin Constant, whom he had once sent into internal exile.

Napoleon well knew that after 23 years of almost constant war, the French people wanted no more of it. His greatest hope was for a peaceful period like his days as first consul, in which he could re-establish the legitimacy of his dynasty, return the nation’s battered economy to strength and restore the civil order the Bourbons had disturbed.

And so he resumed building various public works in Paris, including the elephant fountain at the Bastille, a new marketplace at St. Germain, the foreign ministry at the Quai d’Orsay, and the Louvre. He sent the actor François-Joseph Talma to teach at the Conservatory, which the Bourbons had closed, and also returned to their government jobs Vivant Denon, the director of the Louvre; the painter Jacques-Louis David; the architect Pierre Fontaine; and the doctor Jean-Nicolas Corvisart. On March 31, he visited the orphaned daughters of members of the Légion d’Honneur, whose school at Saint-Denis had had its funding cut by the Bourbons. That same day he restored the University of France to its former footing, appointing the Comte de Lacépède as chancellor. At a concert at the Tuileries he kindled a romance with the celebrated 36-year-old actress and beauty Anne Hippolyte Boutet Salvetat (whose stage name was Mademoiselle Mars).

All that Napoleon achieved in just 12 weeks after he returned to Paris—even as he prepared for the war the Allies had declared on him.

 

...

 

Napoleon wanted to strike at the hinge between the Prussian and British armies, as he had done on other battlefields for nearly 20 years, and at first it seemed as if he’d succeeded. At the Battle of Ligny on June 16, he pinned the Prussians in place with a frontal attack and ordered a corps of 20,000 men under Gen. Jean-Baptiste d’Erlon to fall on the enemy’s exposed right flank. Had d’Erlon arrived as planned, it would have turned a respectable victory for Napoleon into a devastating rout of the Prussians. Instead, just as he was about to engage, d’Erlon received urgent orders from Marshal Ney to support Ney miles to the west, and so d’Erlon marched.

“Incomprehensible day,” Napoleon later said of that fateful June 18, admitting that he “did not thoroughly understand the battle,” the loss of which he blamed on “a combination of extraordinary Fates.” In fact, it was not incomprehensible at all: Napoleon split his army disastrously the day before the battle, put his senior marshals in the wrong roles, failed to attack early enough in the morning, didn’t discern that the Prussians were going to arrive in the afternoon, launched his major infantry attack in the wrong formation and his major cavalry attack at the wrong time (and unsupported by infantry and horse artillery), and unleashed his Imperial Guard too late. As he told one of his captors the following year: “In war, the game is always with him who commits the fewest faults.” At Waterloo, that was undoubtedly Wellington.

If Napoleon had remained emperor of France for the six years remaining in his natural life, European civilization would have benefited inestimably. The reactionary Holy Alliance of Russia, Prussia and Austria would not have been able to crush liberal constitutionalist movements in Spain, Greece, Eastern Europe and elsewhere; pressure to join France in abolishing slavery in Asia, Africa and the Caribbean would have grown; the benefits of meritocracy over feudalism would have had time to become more widely appreciated; Jews would not have been forced back into their ghettos in the Papal States and made to wear the yellow star again; encouragement of the arts and sciences would have been better understood and copied; and the plans to rebuild Paris would have been implemented, making it the most gorgeous city in the world.

Napoleon deserved to lose Waterloo, and Wellington to win it, but the essential point in this bicentenary year is that the epic battle did not need to be fought — and the world would have been better off if it hadn’t been.

 

READ MORE:

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/we-better-off-napoleon-never-lost-waterloo-180955298/

 

IMAGE AT TOP: BONAPARTE. DETAIL FROM AN ENGRAVING IN La Révolution française in 44 volumes. Auguste Dide · François-Alphonse Aulard. Jan 1903 — in Gus's collection of old books (Volume 21 to 44)....

August Dide was a pastor, who belonged to the liberal current, and was director of the newspaper Le Protestant liberal. He then devoted himself to the writing of literary and historical studies and published several articles and books including La fin des religions [the End of religions], The Christian legend, Michel Servet and Calvin.

Elected senator of the Gard, he delivered in 1885, 20 years before the law of 1905, a speech on the separation of Church and State.

Freemason, initiated into the Grand Orient of France, he joined, with his wife Noémie, the first lodge of Human Rights in Nice and was a member of the Supreme Council.

 

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blow by blow....

La Révolution française in 44 volumes by Auguste Dide and François-Alphonse Aulard. Jan 1903 — in Gus's collection of old books (Volume 21 to 44 ONLY).... is a BLOW BY BLOW HISTORICAL ACCOUNT OF THE FRENCH REVOLUTION. IT IS MASSIVE IN ITS SCOPE.

 

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luck was JFK's deal....

 

BY CAITLIN JOHNSTONE

 

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has moved its symbolic Doomsday Clock to ninety seconds to midnight, the closest it has ever been set since its founding after the second world war. Chief among their reasons for doing so is the increasingly dangerous war in Ukraine.

statement authored by the Bulletin’s editor John Mecklin is as biased against Russia as any mainstream western punditry today and makes no mention of the US empire’s role in provokingprolonging and benefiting from this conflict, yet it still provides a fairly reasonable appraisal of the magnitude of the threat we’re staring down the barrel of at this point in history:

 

This year, the Science and Security Board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists moves the hands of the Doomsday Clock forward, largely (though not exclusively) because of the mounting dangers of the war in Ukraine. The Clock now stands at 90 seconds to midnight—the closest to global catastrophe it has ever been.

 

The war in Ukraine may enter a second horrifying year, with both sides convinced they can win. Ukraine’s sovereignty and broader European security arrangements that have largely held since the end of World War II are at stake. Also, Russia’s war on Ukraine has raised profound questions about how states interact, eroding norms of international conduct that underpin successful responses to a variety of global risks.

 

And worst of all, Russia’s thinly veiled threats to use nuclear weapons remind the world that escalation of the conflict—by accident, intention, or miscalculation—is a terrible risk. The possibility that the conflict could spin out of anyone’s control remains high.

Mecklin encourages dialogue between Russia, Ukraine and NATO powers in order to de-escalate tensions in “this time of unprecedented global danger.” He quotes UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who warned last August that the world has entered “a time of nuclear danger not seen since the height of the Cold War.”

We came a hair’s breadth from nuclear annihilation during the chaotic and unpredictable brinkmanship at the height of the last cold war, and in fact had numerous close calls that could have easily wound up going another way. As former Secretary of State Dean Acheson put it, humanity survived the Cuban Missile Crisis by “plain dumb luck”. 

[GUS NOTE: PLAIN DUMB LUCK WAS THAT JFK WAS NOT ASSASSINATED BEFORE HE MADE A DEAL WITH KHRUSHCHEV]

There’s no logical basis for the belief that we’ll get lucky again. Believing nuclear war won’t happen because it didn’t happen last time is a type of fallacious reasoning known as normalcy bias; it’s as rational as believing Russian roulette is safe because the man handing you the pistol didn’t blow his head off when he pulled the trigger.

But that’s the kind of sloppy thinking you’ll run into when you try to discuss this subject in public; I’m always encountering arguments that there’s no risk of nuclear war because we’ve gone all this time without disaster. One of the reasons I engage so much on social media is that I find it’s a good way of keeping tabs on the dominant propaganda narratives in our civilization and understanding what people are thinking and believing about things, and nowhere have I been met with more fuzzbrained comments than the times I’ve written about the need to prevent an entirely preventable nuclear holocaust.

The most common response I get is something along the lines of “Well if there is a nuclear war it will be Putin’s fault,” as though whose “fault” it is will matter to us while we’re watching the world end, along with the related “Well Russia shouldn’t have invaded then” and “Well Russia should stop threatening to use nukes then.” People genuinely don’t seem to understand that in the event of a full-scale nuclear war, it will really be the end of everyone. They still kind of imagine everyone still being there and shaking their fists at Russia afterward, and themselves sitting there feeling self-righteous and vindicated for correctly saying what a bad, bad man Vladimir Putin is.

They don’t understand that there will be no pundits discussing the nuclear armageddon on Fox and MSNBC, arguing about whose fault it was and which political party is to blame. They don’t get that there won’t be any war crimes tribunals in the radioactive ashes as the biosphere starves to death in nuclear winter. They don’t understand that once the nukes start flying, nobody’s shoulds or shouldn’ts about it will matter at all, and neither will your political opinions about Putin. All that will matter is that it happened, and that it can’t be taken back.

Another common response when I talk about the looming threat of nuclear war is, “Oh so you just don’t care about Ukrainians and you want them all to die.” The other day some lady responded to a Twitter thread I made about the need to avoid nuclear armageddon by saying that I must love rape and war crimes. People sincerely believe that’s a valid response to a discussion about the need to prevent the single worst thing that could possibly happen from happening. It really doesn’t seem to occur to them that they’re not actually engaging the subject at hand in any real way.

Slightly more perceptive interlocutors will argue that if we back down to tyrants just because they have nuclear weapons then everyone will try to get nukes and those who have them will become more belligerent, which will end up making nuclear war more likely in the long run. This response is a straw man fallacy because it misrepresents the argument as “just back down” rather than a call to engage in diplomacy and dialogue to de-escalate and begin sincerely negotiating toward detente, none of which is happening to any meaningful extent in this conflict. More importantly, it pretends that Russia is just invading its neighbor out of the blue instead of the well-documented reality that it is in fact responding to provocations by the US empire. The US has a moral obligation to de-escalate a conflict it knowingly provoked to advance its own interests, especially when that conflict could kill everyone in the world.

The whole “We can’t just back down to bullies like Putin” line of argumentation is further invalidated by the fact that it’s one thing to draw a line in the sand that must never be crossed — even if in the face of armageddon — but it’s quite another to say that line should be over something as small as who governs Crimea. This planet is populated with eight billion humans and countless other sentient creatures, very few of whom care one way or another who governs Crimea and almost none of whom would be willing to watch their loved ones die over it. Wanting to draw the line there is obnoxious, arrogant, and absurd.

And that’s just the shoddy brainwork of the rank-and-file public; the thinking of those who actually got us into this situation is surely just as dogshit. From what I can tell standing on this side of the thick veils of government secrecy which separate us from the truth, it appears to arise predominantly from a combination of immense hubris and zealous groupthink; hubris to think they can control all possible outcomes in a game of brinkmanship with so many small, unpredictable moving parts, and zealous groupthink in mindlessly adhering to the imperial doctrine that US unipolar planetary hegemony must be secured at all cost. They’re playing games with the life of every creature on this planet, and anyone who thinks that’s smart or wise should be as far from such decisions as possible.

The logical faceplants I’m describing here seem to arise partly from the fact that our civilization is completely inundated with empire propaganda about this conflict, and partly from the fact that people just haven’t thought terribly hard about nuclear war and what it would mean. The latter is probably because the prospect of everyone dying horrifically is such a huge, heavy, uncomfortable subject to sit down and deeply grapple with to the extent that it demands. For most people it’s just this vague, blurry mass in the periphery of their awareness, because they’ve been doing all these weird mental gymnastics to squirm and compartmentalize away from this thing rather than facing it.

But if ever there was a time to start doing some rigorous independent thinking and stop trusting the authorities to sort things out, it would be now. They’re showing us every sign that they’re just going to keep ramping up these games of nuclear chicken until they either fill their bottomless need for more complete global control or get us all killed trying. People need to start waking up to what’s going on and start making things uncomfortable for the people who are driving our world toward total destruction.

It does not need to be this way. Peace talks are possible. Diplomacy, de-escalation and detente are possible. Anyone who says otherwise is lying. We need to start building some public pressure to end this madness, because if the mushroom clouds ever show up, there is not one person alive who in that moment will believe that it was worth it.

 

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READ MORE:

https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2023/01/25/hardly-anyone-is-thinking-logically-about-the-risk-of-nuclear-war/

 

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SEE ALSO: NAZI hero....

 

 

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