Wednesday, 25 February 2015

The Second Interstellar War III

Rereading Poul Anderson's Fire Time, I have reached Gunnar Heim's caustic comments on the war between the World Federation and the Naqsa League. However, searching the blog reminds me that I discussed this very chapter exactly two years ago! See here and here. So there is not much more to be said, except that - Anderson shows us how conflicts can differ. The Aleriona had wanted to eliminate humanity; Naqsa does not.

It is, of course, the job of military intelligence services to discover the enemy's motives and thus how any given conflict might be ended, not just to issue propaganda along the lines of "My country right or wrong!" Heim grasps the realities and replies to the propaganda:

"(Joy tumultuous in Shanghai Welfare. Gigantic on a wallscreen, the image of a politician pledges solidarity with the gallant Eleutherians. He is himself wealthy, but he needs these votes.)"
-Poul Anderson, Fire Time (St Albans, Herts, 1977), p. 98.

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