Wednesday, May 18, 2022

The Asov Battalion

Asov Battalion logo

As the World Turns was of course the name of a famous soap opera, but it also describes the circulatory nature of history out outlined in particular by Vico. There's the famed Santayana quote with its implication of endemic repetition compulsion, the neural substrate of futurity. The United States was roughly in the equivalent place of Russia back in l975, trying and failing to save face as soldiers died. Now the US has become the knight in shining armor and the Ukraine, a bombed out Camelot. Where and when will the Ukrainian brand of nationalism become branded? The Asov battalion were the holdouts in Mariupol, but they're known to be right wing nationalists;  extremism is effective because of the bonds it creates. Look at the Taliban, ISIS and other terrorist organizations. Look at Arab Spring and where it led. Is Libya better off now that Gaddafi has been rooted out? One of his sons, Said al-Islam, is now running for president. Fernando Marcos’s son, Bongbong, is taking over from Duterte in the Philippines. Certain elements of the periodic table are particularly unstable and prone to bond with others. The same is true of political movements that are infused by charisma. Eventually the sect becomes a church, as Max Weber pointed out. Those who are willing to die for a cause eventually become the problem.

read "The Square" by Francis Levy, HuffPost

and listen to "Many Rivers to Cross" by Jimmy Cliff

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