American Recessional: Lest we forget
Following the recent Red Chinese virus-restricted, military-enforced "pomp of yesterday" in Washington, D.C, some lines from Rudyard Kipling’s "Recessional" come to mind : "The tumult and the shouting dies. The Captains and the Kings depart..." But wait. There’s more.
Recall, in 1897, to celebrate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee, Kipling was asked to write a commemorative poem. At the time, one-percent of the British population owned over 80-percent of the British Isles. Great Britain’s ruling class controlled Parliament, the media, the stock market, Britain’s coal-mining, fishing, and shipping industries and the machinery of the nascent Industrial Revolution -- a veritable Deep State. Does this sound familiar?
Moreover, Great Britain controlled one-quarter of the earth’s surface. The Royal Navy dominated almost all of the world’s oceans.
Troubled that the British Empire’s "dominion over palm and pine" and "far-flung battle-line" were stretched too thin and that Britain’s Deep State was "drunk with sight of power," Kipling suggested his beloved Empire could be destroyed as were the ancient empires of Nineveh and Tyre.
Kipling wrote: "Far-called, our navies melt away; On dune and headland sinks the fire: Lo, all our pomp of yesterday is one with Nineveh and Tyre!"
Kipling, of course, was prescient. It wasn’t very long before World War I destroyed an entire generation of young Britons. While Great Britain’s ship of state did not sink, it had taken a blow just below the waterline. And, in World War II, were it not for Winston Churchill and the sacrifice of way too many American lives, the British Empire would have sunk from sight.
If Kipling’s prescience were extended to today’s America and if Kipling knew about American football, Kipling might observe that Team MAGA and its over 74 million fans battled their way to the Deep State’s two-yard line, only to have the ball stolen away. Mysteriously, there was no "instant replay." The referees disappeared and time ran out.
Yet for Team MAGA’s over 74 million fans there is still hope. A rematch is scheduled for 2022, with a rubber match set for 2024. Hopefully, the "instant replay" will be working again and the referees will come out of hiding and do their jobs.
NB:[whispering] Sorry for the strained analogies; however, to circumvent Big Brother and the Deep State’s High Tech censors, it is necessary to allude to history that is, hopefully, unknown to the poorly-educated computer geeks hunched over their monitors in Silicon Valley’s Ministry of Truth, trying to detect deviations from what Big Brother has decreed is the truth, the way, and the light. Ergo, no direct mention of the recent, well... you know. But I thought I should share this with you: "Lest we forget. Lest we forget."
Suggested reading: "Recessional" by Rudyard Kipling (1897). The Proud Tower: A Portrait of the World Before the War, 1890-1914, by Barbara Tuchman.
©2021. William Hamilton.