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Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Autumn notes on the psychology of war

In the Russian air smells great war.

Suddenly it turns out that the stalls, the tents in the capital’s metro stations were removed to clear access to shelters. There is a controversy about how the area should occupy a work-place in the shelter (the current standard is 1.5 sq m, just like the grave) and how much bread in one hand it is necessary to allocate during the war (government of Saint-Petersburg suggested that 300 g a day).

In the same Peter MES bodies require to equip a giant shelter from a nuclear attack under construction for many years megastation “Zenit arena”. In different regions of the exercises of civil defense on the theme “How to survive a nuclear explosion”. Weighty smoke somewhere in the Spanish seas, our aircraft carrier “Admiral Kuznetsov”.

And so on.

Insightful analysts, meanwhile, argue: why do we need all this preparation for war? Maintained on the principle of the old Soviet joke: a war breaks out or not is unknown, but the struggle for peace will be such that not a stone will remain.

Analytical arguments are basically two:

A) a Military mood you need the Russian authorities to distract people’s political attention away from problems in the economy, social sphere, etc.

B) Russia should protect its vital geostrategic interests, and it becomes possible to make only by war or at least the permanent preparation for such.


In XVIII–XIX centuries, this was a very clever military theorist Carl von Clausewitz. Partly, the speakers and the military practitioner, for example, he fought for Russia against France in 1812. Clausewitz wrote a very thick book “On war”, which many military analysts just adore. The ideas in the book are many, but the main, diamond embossed letters on the military firmament of the Universe: war is the continuation of politics by other means.

I’ve lived with it and gradually came to the opposite conclusion. No, politics is the continuation of the war. All possible means.

Because the main thing that gives rise to war — the ruling person or group of people who benefit from the psychology of war.

And what’s this psychology — I will try to show an everyday example.

At the beginning of last decade, I moved into a new apartment in the heart of Moscow, Bulvar Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, 2 (address changed).

My immediate neighbor was the famous (in the past) actress, the widow of art Director of Theatre of tragedy (name changed), a legendary Nar. art. USSR O. Spengler (name changed).

From the first day of our neighborhood Mrs. Spengler told me a real war.

At first she did not allow me to do the repair. Referring to the fact that my repair noise inconsistent with her widowed life. It is permanently cursed on what light is, construction workers, tried to stick gum in the locks of my doors, and more. etc. But the most powerful corrosive action of the widow was a regular, call the police, who checked the workers registered in the capital. Some of it, of course, was not, and then they had to buy back from the Department. Standard rate: 500 rubles per head of the worker.

I tried to pursue a policy of appeasement. Among other things, gave Mrs. Spengler metal door and some very functional pieces of furniture left from the previous owners of my house. It did not help. The neighbor calmed down only for a matter of days, after which the battle resumes.

When the repair was completed and the building was quiet sounds, which formally declared the main cause of the war, the widow went on the offensive, but under a different sauce. She loved early mornings, especially on weekends, to call me at the door and say something like:

Yesterday on the fire escape of the 8th floor was discovered an empty bottle of whiskey. It is clear that left it to you: we live in the house of decent people, and the only indecent you. Imagine that tomorrow all of a sudden the fire, we all run downstairs, trip over your bottle and forever perishing in the fire. Do you do it?

To explain Mrs. Spengler that: a) we actually live on the 13th floor and I have never had any problems on the eighth; b) I don’t drink whiskey in the hallway, especially from the throat;) I am a categorical opponent of fires, especially in my house was impossible. She was not interested in my answers. She had whatever to carry out an act of war against me. She did it under any fictitious pretexts.

Over time, I as a defensive action disconnected the doorbell. Well, how about the West in 2014-2015, tried to pretend that he is ready to ignore a certain level of activity of Vladimir Putin in neighboring Russia spaces. That didn’t stop Ms. Spengler. She began to mark their visits powerful beat of feet at my door. (Analogy: the activity of videoconferencing in Syria.) Although the beating was not fully effective weapons: after all, the widow was already well over 80. She tired quickly. I put additional inside the apartment door to the widow’s feet was heard minimally.

The years went by. I once went on a fairly long trip. Back from where you found the apartment of Madame sealed.

Sad guess immediately flashed in me. I got down to the seals and realized the neighbor bequeathed the property profile of the Museum.

Ran home, I quickly went online to find out one thing: did the kids at Mrs. Spengler? Yes, there was. In the sense of is. Two fully grown adult.

And here I was really bitter and ashamed. Madame and the death of a deviation. Not throwing in a cheap apartment own children. What could/should be able to count I, a complete stranger to her?

Eternal memory.


The widow of folk Spengler — a vivid example and proof that war is, as a rule, not to achieve some practical results. But for the sake of war itself. Because the subject of decision-making on military basis and sequels, in peace just can’t find myself. Not able to maintain normal levels of adrenaline and other main hormones in the blood.

This is called the psychology of war. A hostage and a servant which is discussing the subject.

Reason for new and new fighting is always there. That is the reason, not the reason; in this case it is absolutely different, even opposite things.

While the media psychology of war, generally:

— announce your actions are strictly defensive, not offensive — I had to fight, otherwise we were attacked, dismembered and eaten; so, Ms. Spengler, according to its doctrine, didn’t attack me, but only to defend themselves from the cave of the troglodyte, by the fact of settling in the iconic building on Blvd. The Molotov-Ribbentrop sought to break her Royal destiny;

— always, of course, figure out what practical benefit he and his people, if he is the leader of the people, will gain from ordinary or extraordinary of the war: the type of access to the seas/oceans, large deposits of red mercury, a giant opium poppy cultivation, any other.

Almost never in history been an effective tactic of appeasement (as in my Madonna case). Supporters of such tactics is reason to believe that war can be a long time (forever) to stop by concessions to the initiator: territorial, political, economic, resource, etc. But they do not understand that the aggressor need not only local concessions by themselves, but an endless continuation of the war in one form or another. No, any gifts or other he will take it. But soon, you will begin to invent a pretext for a new war and find him. Servant of the psychology of war is unlikely to stay — and the question here is not whether he achieved the nominal goals of their combat activity. True, undeclared goal — getting a new dose of sweet drug called “war”. And this dose needs a campaign, it does not get in peacetime. But without a dose — breaking, painful shock which can be fatal.

And no one wanted to die. At least, from the banal to painful shock.

I don’t know what in this context is waiting for. Although can’t rule anything out. For the reasons that I almost allegorical’ve tried to outline above.

Of course, today, she’s a hybrid war is not the same as it was in the XX century. She could do without a General mobilization — the regular troops, mercenaries, private military companies (PMCs).

But any war should be avoided. Especially having in mind that the military format of the life of the people gives rise to generation, which absorb from childhood that fatal psychology. And broadcast related aggression all around.

I don’t want a war. I grew up during the great peacemaker L. I. Brezhnev. And when the famous ditty “from the sky the asterisk fell right dear pants, although there would still tore, but it was not war.”

“Tormented by the madness of Melpomene, I only thirst of the world” ().


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