Monday, 17 June 2013
Know Your Enemy III
In Satan's World (New York, 1977), Garver is unflatteringly described thus: short, thinning hair, pugdog face, severe gray tunic, uncommonly wide shoulders, surrounded - almost guarded - by secretarial machines, never married, no personal desk items but many animated wall pictures of himself shaking hands with successive Solar Premiers, Lunar Presidents etc. (p. 65) His title is director of the Lunar Federal Centrum of Security and Law Enforcement. (p. 66) He hates the Polesotechnic League for its intrigue, bribery, corruption, disregard for laws, arrogance, feudalism, capitalism, license and profiteering (p. 67).
Garver thinks that he will be able to charge van Rijn with several serious crimes including even murder but then finds that he cannot. Van Rijn says, just before switching off a communication screen, "'Gloat...'" (p. 83). Maybe I am no true Anderson fan but I cannot help feeling a little sorry for Garver at this point! As Flandry thinks about one of his superior officers, "It can't be much fun being Fenross." (Agent Of The Terran Empire, London, 1977, p. 113) - or Garver.
Both Garver and Fenross are presented to make the reader feel contempt for them and pleasure at their discomfiture, although perhaps some sympathy would be more appropriate, especially for Fenross when Flandry speculates about how the feud between them started. Fenross is not "the enemy," not a Merseian, but he is nevertheless Flandry's personal enemy, sending him on missions to get him killed.
Flandry has no regular "M" equivalent. He takes his orders from Abrams once, Kheraskov once, Fenross twice and Molitor once but otherwise has a roving commission. Meanwhile, I have digressed from love-to-hate-him Garvey but his misdemeanors in Mirkheim will have to wait till a later post.