Remembrance (Against the Tyrants)

So many have suffered so terribly in war. I wonder at times if the greatest act of compassionate remembrance might be to do absolutely everything in our power to ensure that such horrors are never revisited up anyone, anywhere, ever again. Even while those distant autocrats (alongside motley tinpot tyrants) everywhere beat the drums of war and threaten to drag us all unwilling into the next vast conflagration, it seems they never learned the simplest fact that war is essentially uncontrolled, uncontrollable and if you start that fire you better be damn well prepared to watch your own house burn down.

The game of authoritarian fear, of course, is one in which adversaries rattle and roll their swords and drones across withered ancient battlefields as though the world in which medieval power roamed was somehow and magically still upon us. This is the enigma – of obscuring, forgetting that the cause of the suffering through which they seek to repress their own populations and as justification for the expansive oppression of belligerent empire-building was anything other than an infantile memory of reality that never quite conformed to their earliest infantile narcissism. Enraged by a world that defies them they hardly seem able to understand that while that world doesn’t need them, it is only through anger and battle that they can even exist.

This is precisely why the autocrat is a walking, talking disaster and fight looking for a reason. They depend on the difference they wrongly believe that conflict will resolve and consistently endless seek self-importance through the mistakes they bear like albatrosses around their necks. The autocrat is a logical non-sequitur but as they need us to stand against, I can not help but wonder if the peace we all aspire to is forever impossible without the presence of brutal dictators and violent mobsters to compare it against.

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