Friday, April 01, 2011

a.m. Thoughts on Thermopylae

For some reason, this occurred to me when in the shower today.

The achievement at Thermopylae was not that a 300 highly trained fanatic clones were able to defend a narrow pass for 3 days; it was that some genius of a quartermaster/s managed to supply and support an invading army of hundreds of thousands, comprised of soldiers from vastly different cultures, and some genius of a commander/s managed to keep them motivated and fighting, thousands of kilometres from their homes.

When Hannibal and Alexander do it, it's a great feat of arms and leadership, but when when Xerxes I does it a full 150 years before Alexander, it's all about those 300?! Bah!


Anonymous said...

I sense an enamourment with the "magic of how" versus the "wisdom of why".

Ludwig said...

[anon] Heh. What you should sense is an attempt to correct an imbalance in the Force where there is way too much focus on the "wisdom of why" vis a vis the "magic of how". :P

Spin said...

Mein gott, what a historical breakthrough. Like Marxist history in reverse. Maybe.