The Plastic Hippo

July 20, 2015

Chinese curse

Filed under: History,Politics,Society,World — theplastichippo @ 1:00 am
Tags: , , , ,


According to common western perception, Confucius said a great many things. He did not, however, ever say that we are cursed to live in interesting times. This ironic aphorism is not an ancient Chinese curse uttered by the inscrutable philosopher but is a more modern and more western invention cooked up by the British ambassador to China in the uncertain 1930`s. With the Chinese stock market in apparent free fall, the current British ambassador might well be issuing dispatches describing a communist experiment with capitalism as “interesting”. In both cases and with typically British understatement, the word “interesting” is a code for the word “dangerous”.

The surprising and sudden rapprochement between the west and Iran over its nuclear ambition is, as the ambassador might have said, “interesting”. The negotiations took 12 years and were deadlocked for 11 and three quarters. Clearly a triumph of detente, the agreement carries the added bonus of boiling the urine of US Republicans, Benjamin Netanyahu and the entire House of Saud. If these guys are upset, then we are indeed living in “interesting” times and it`s only a matter of time before somebody does something incredibly stupid.

The cuddling up to Iran is not just about the “my enemy`s enemy” shtick; it`s also about billions of barrels of crude and all those lovely gas reserves. Watch out for a fair exchange of lethal weaponry for lots of black gold and the promise to destroy murderous warlords bringing “interesting” instability to the Middle East. Ironically, the barbaric ISIL do not appear to be too concerned but there is little wonder that the murderous warlords in the Congress, the Knesset and Riyadh are a bit miffed and have adopted the default position of threatening to bomb the blazes out of anything that moves.

Interestingly, the British position is hardening at the thought of another futile desert war. Cameron is softening up parliament for another vote on bombing Syria but he did tell NBC that he would have to take “his” parliament with him. Really Dave…your parliament? I thought British democracy belonged to the British people…you know…like the NHS. Here`s a piece of advice offered with the best of intentions; stop being such a complete and utter prat.

With the benefit of hindsight, perhaps parliament could have saved a few bob by voting in favour of bombing the blazes out of Syria two years ago. After all, the assets would already be deployed in theatre and it would be financially neutral to stop bombing one side and start bombing the other. It will be interesting to see how long it takes before we start arming that nice President Assad chap. Additionally, three British pilots have been flying combat missions over Syria much to the annoyance of those who don`t mind bombing Iraq but do mind bombing Syria. This is simply a training issue as we no longer possess aircraft carriers or the aircraft that fly from them. Attempting to land a Jet Provost on a converted narrow boat on the Grand Union Canal is no substitute for the real thing and what`s a few tons of laser guided, indiscriminate high explosives between friends.

Fortunately, when the IMF and European Central Bank order Britain to bomb Athens, the elderly strike aircraft based at RAF Akrotiri will be perfectly placed to ensure “interesting” Cyprus holidays without the need for an expensive aircraft carrier. According to a handful of unaccountable financiers, the Greek government preside over a rogue and failed state and for opposing imposed austerity, Tsipras requires removal by any means available. It is interesting that only those unaffected by austerity champion the necessity of austerity. Threats, humiliation and blackmail indicate that that the European economy is based on a business model developed by loan sharks such as Wonga.

Interestingly, this paradigm shift in loyalty and affiliation might result in summer holidays being enjoyed in Tehran rather than Thessaloniki. Cameron might wish to join the predictable demands to bomb the blazes out of everything that moves but perhaps he and the other hawks should consider some of the “interesting” stuff that Confucius actually said. Here`s one for Germany and the bankers;

“Do not impose on others what you yourself do not desire”

Here`s one for the armchair generals;
“Before you embark on a journey of revenge, dig two graves”.

Clever bloke, that Confucius.

1 Comment »

  1. One of your best yet, PH!

    Comment by Angela Ramsell — July 20, 2015 @ 7:05 am | Reply

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