Tag Archives Soviet

FROM AGINCOURT TO MARIUPOL

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Much of the history of modern Europe,

from Agincourt to Mariupol,

seems to comprise ignorant, arrogant

purportedly Christian armies – some ragged,

most well financed – advancing, retreating,

slaughtering innocents, telling lies,

with brief respites for rearmament,

and victory’s parades and revenges.

 

Even respectable men who should know

better, scholars and poets, politicos

and hacks, pretend to be soldiers, to ‘Hear

the drums of morning play. Hark the empty

highways crying “Who’ll beyond the hills away?”‘

They broadcast the recruiting sergeant’s drum roll –

for volunteers to step up and play

one of humankind’s most ancient games,

border disputes and the massing of troops.

 

The Soviets created the famine

in Ukraine, as the British did in Ireland,

to chasten the natives, remove them.

Such holodomors need not just a Peel,

a Russell, snug in 10 Downing Street,

or a Stalin, secure in the Kremlin –

choosing which omelettes are on the menu,

which eggs, and how many, should be broken –

but hierarchies of aiders and abetters,

dutiful enablers of iniquity.

 

 

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