In The Report From Iron Mountain, it is said that war is partly founded upon a basis of international understanding. This is how shy peoples of different nations get to know each other. War “breaks the ice”, so to speak. What better way to get to know the Arabs than by fighting them? It would be too scary to just travel to Iran or some such place, introduce yourself, and say, “I would like to get to know you better.” No real he-man would do such a thing. The he-man way is to first show the other fellow how tough you are. (Further background: “Advance of the Sawbones”, Ersjdamoo’s Blog entry of July 29, 2013.)
And so the international understanding is about to be increased via a Syrian war. Already, even before war in Syria has been officially started, the communications between the United States and Russia have ratcheted up. In A Plea for Caution From Russia, Vladimir Putin in part writes, “It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation.” This flies in the face of the Limbaugh-esque concept of “American exceptionalism.” In the larger context, the first of the “exceptional” people were the Jews, a.k.a., the “chosen people.” Later, as a reaction to the Jewish “exceptionalism”, Adolph Hitler and the Nazis invented their “master race” form of exceptionalism. So Vladimir Putin, Tsar of all the Russias, could have a point about the dangers of exceptionalism.
As you can see, even before World War III has officially started, the international understandings between Russia and the USA are increasing, just as Iron Mountain had explained.
Even Ersjdamoo’s Blog has been finding new international understandings about Syria, consequent to the war drums sounding. The folklore of Syria has begun to be explored, resulting in yesterday’s blog entry, “Story of Gash and Homar”.
For the Arab world in general (including Syria), what book could be better for the international understanding than Tales of the Arabian Nights. Footnotes contained in the Castle Books 1984 edition tell us that “belief in Genii was prevalent throughout the East long before the time of Mahomet.” The Genii inhabited solitary places. The desert whirlwinds were thought to be caused by the Genii. Moslem folklore has it that the earth had been originally peopled by these Genii. But the Genii (Giants?) had rebelled against the Almighty and usurped dominion over the earth. After 2,000 years, Azazil was sent to battle against the Genii. Azazil defeated the Genii and overthrew their mighty king Gian ben Gian, the founder of the pyramids. King Gian ben Gian’s magic buckler of talismanic virtue subsequently came into the possession of King Solomon. As for the Genii, who had rebelled against the Almighty, they were driven into an obscure corner of the earth.
Israel is sure to become involved in the World War III drive for international understanding. Israel is “under the dome” because they are supposed to be protected by an “iron dome” missile defense system. By synchronicity a Stephen King drama, “Under the Dome”, unfolds in weekly episodes at this time. We know some of the Jewish tales from reading the Old Testament. But the international understanding can be improved by supplemental reading of the Sefer Ha-Aggadah (Book of Legends), edited by Hayim Nahman Bialik and Yehoshua Hana Ravnitsky.
So you see how the international understanding is being increased. But come to think of it, couldn’t we overcome our shyness and do this without war?