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Monday, August 08, 2016

The Book of the Week


Pussycats: Why the Rest Keeps Beating the West and What Can Be Done About It, by Martin van Creveld, is the Book of the Week. Martin is always a must-read for anyone interested in military history or strategy, whether he is published by Castalia or, as in this case, not.

We'll have a pair of new books out from him in the near future, but in the meantime, this book about the decline of Western military power should tide van Creveld fans over nicely.

The “West,” a term which from this point on will refer to the countries of Western Europe and North America while excluding Russia and Japan, reached the peak of its power just before 1914. Later, owing partly to the casualties sustained in World War I and partly to a loss of self-confidence, it found that its rule over subject peoples became harder and harder to sustain. During the interwar period several colonial countries in the Middle East, including Egypt, Iraq and Jordan, gained at least nominal independence. Translating that into real independence took longer; but by the second half of the 1950s that, too, had been achieved.

Here we are concerned with the strategic aspect of the matter, not the moral one. Still staying in the interwar period, struggles such as the one against the Rif of Morocco, when some 250,000 well-equipped, highly-trained, French and Spanish troops took several years to defeat a loose coalition of mostly barefoot, mostly illiterate, Moroccan tribesmen, pointed to the direction in which things were moving. By 1939 many colonial peoples around the world were preparing to challenge their masters. Although, in the event, it took World War II, in which those masters tore each other to pieces, to set the stage for the conflagrations that followed.

Since then almost the only time Western countries gained a clear military victory over their non-Western opponents was during the First Gulf War. In 1991 NATO, as the most powerful military alliance in history, had just emerged triumphant from the forty-five year struggle known as the Cold War. But its members had not yet begun to dismantle their armed forces as the European ones in particular were to do later on. As a result, they were free as never before or since to send those forces to any spot they wanted to wage any war they wanted against any opponent they wanted. Though few people realized it at the time, in retrospect to challenge NATO, reinforced by several other countries, with a conventional army, as Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein did, represented the height of folly. Even so the US and its allies did not complete the job. With good reason, as it later turned out.

This episode apart, practically every time the West, or some country that was part of it, fought the rest it was defeated. Conversely the wars in question, and the people who waged them and fought in them, succeeded in liberating—whatever that might mean—entire continents with populations numbering in the hundreds of millions.

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24 Comments:

Blogger pyrrhus August 08, 2016 4:37 PM  

I have the book, thought the best part was a lengthy discussion of the feminization of the West, and eventually of the military.

Anonymous Discard August 08, 2016 4:47 PM  

I don't mind if the Moroccans beat the Spanish in Morocco. I care about the Moroccans, or whatever wogs you care to name, beating Whites in White lands. Hopefully the author addresses that.

Blogger dc.sunsets August 08, 2016 4:57 PM  

So what's the takeaway?

I stick to the notion that if Westerners would 1) kick off the deadwood parasites crowding into the wagon and 2) concentrate their military activities on defending their borders (with extreme prejudice), all would be well.

Men are responsible. The only time women & perpetual children are allowed to steer is when men indulge their whims and tantrums, i.e., when shit gets teal.

When shit gets real, the "I wanna steer! I wanna steer!" bitches will be kicked out and men will take back what their over-indulgent predecessors should never have relinquished.

Things have to get a lot worse before this will be obvious to most people. Until then I expect more "But momma, it's MY turn to be captain."

Anonymous Rawle Nyanzi August 08, 2016 5:01 PM  

It's an excellent addition to any personal library; when I read the chapter on the West's modern culture, I shook my head at just how much liberty we had lost -- and it went far beyond the usual SJW shenanigans. That section was essential for understanding the rest of the work, for it showed exactly how the military culture came to decline.

My review of the book is here.

Anonymous grey enlightenment August 08, 2016 5:55 PM  

team america world police

Anonymous Philipp August 08, 2016 6:02 PM  

"Even so the US and its allies did not complete the job. With good reason, as it later turned out."

Indeed.

Blogger Stephen Ward August 08, 2016 6:17 PM  

I have read the book. It's worth getting

Anonymous andon August 08, 2016 6:29 PM  

its lack of pride in their heritage

OpenID a59a9528-b2e7-11e3-b557-000f20980440 August 08, 2016 7:26 PM  

From 1865 to 1933 the governments of the west made war on maleness and masculinity, by criminalizing it, and by representing masculinity in the media as villainous and contemptible.

The war on masculinity escalated from 1919 to 1933.

From 1933 to 1939 they took a more pro masculine position. From 1939 to 1945 an extremely pro masculinity position.

In 1963, back to demonizing and criminalizing maleness and masculinity.

Pretty sure this had some effect on capacity to make war.

When you fear external enemies, you cultivate the masculinity of your people. When you fear internal enemies, you emasculate your people.

Anonymous farmer August 08, 2016 7:29 PM  

The problem is, normal childhood is now illegal. Helicopter parenting is the law if you don't want the state to take away your children. MvC's situation is irreversable at this point in time.

Blogger Cataline Sergius August 08, 2016 7:44 PM  

A mortal wound is not always an immediately disabling one. Sometimes it takes a while for a man to bleed out and he can still do quite a bit of damage to those around him while he is both fighting and dying.

The same applies to a civilization. The Roman Republic was dealt it's death blow in the Second Punic War. Although it didn't die for another 150 years.

I feel Van Crevald is correct in his supposition that the Death of the West began in WWI. Something went out of our world then and we never got it back.

Blogger papabear August 08, 2016 7:50 PM  

Someone has set up a fake profile on Facebook posing as "Vox Day"; wold you like me to report the profile?

Blogger SirHamster August 08, 2016 7:59 PM  

Cataline Sergius wrote:The same applies to a civilization. The Roman Republic was dealt it's death blow in the Second Punic War. Although it didn't die for another 150 years.

I feel Van Crevald is correct in his supposition that the Death of the West began in WWI. Something went out of our world then and we never got it back.


For Rome, that is war losses causing it to expand soldiering to non-citizens?

If so, there is a strong parallel to WWI destroying a generation of men ...

Blogger Old Ez August 08, 2016 7:59 PM  

Bought.

Blogger Markku August 08, 2016 8:50 PM  

papabear, we investigated, it indeed is a fake profile but it's more insidious than that. It also has a fake Milo profile as a friend. Someone is clearly trying to build a fake network of Alt-right profiles. I reported both.

Blogger Lazarus August 08, 2016 9:35 PM  

a59a9528-b2e7-11e3-b557-000f20980440 wrote:When you fear external enemies, you cultivate the masculinity of your people. When you fear internal enemies, you emasculate your people.

Hence the new meme "toxic masculinity"

The fear aggression is mounting.

Blogger Tzufloyguner August 08, 2016 9:56 PM  

Off Topic, but I came across this interview with Chuck Tingle:
http://smartbitchestrashybooks.com/podcast/206-proving-love-interview-dr-chuck-tingle/

Hugo talk starts at about 47:50

Listening to this interview, I don't know what would be greater. If Chuck Tingle is a long con by Vox Day, or if he is real.

Blogger The Other Robot August 08, 2016 10:42 PM  

Is the MSM faking Hillary's crowd size?

Anonymous jOHN MOSBY August 08, 2016 11:47 PM  

"Is the MSM faking Hillary's crowd size?"
Of course they are. Just like they are fakin' the polls, like they are fakin' the bitch havin' something wrong with her sick ass.
What the hell else is new ?

Blogger EscapeVelocity August 09, 2016 12:48 AM  

The Soviets and Chinese armed the natives. And the Cubans provided canon fodder in Africa and South America.

OpenID randkoch August 09, 2016 1:00 AM  

I'm really glad to see this.

Too many people (including here!!!) are saying that Guantanamo should be shut down, and all detainees released or put on trial. Even the bend-over-for-jihadis Supreme Court says it's legal as it is now, and that's still not enough.

We do need to start winning again. Trump and van Creveld may yet save us all.

Anonymous Dyskord August 09, 2016 4:05 AM  

@ 13 I've given this topic much thought myself and the simplest answer I've gotten is the following.
Prior to WW1 The West was still ruled by the aristocracy. True they had become bloated, incompetant and inefectual as well as unable or unwilling to change with the world and bridge the disconnect with the people. However they were staunch proponents of the West and its ideals.
Their defeat in WW1 left a gap. We are taught common men, competent men filled the gap. It was a sort of bloodless peoples revolution. And herelded the rise of Socialism and its ideals in europe. Howver it also allowed a fundemental change in world governance. We went from an aristrocratic civilization to a Merchant civilization. Bankers and business men and their interests filled the vacuum.
It took decades for the incremental changes to take effect, however the boom of industry after WW2 accelerated the changes. Not to mention that the last of the people born with the ideals and beliefs instilled by the previous regime were old or dying.
Today is the full culmination of a Merchant civilization.
One Race, One nation, One religion are all tools of Bankers and Business men to maximize profits and rule unimpeded.

Anonymous Frankenstein McBadperson August 09, 2016 12:53 PM  

He sounds like a very interesting thinker and writer. Congrats for getting him onside with your venture.

Anonymous vales3 August 09, 2016 1:47 PM  

Purchased. I always look forward to reading Creveld. Thanks Vox.

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