Tuesday, 25 April 2017

My Moral Disagreement With Poul Anderson's Dominic Flandry And Stieg Larsson's Mikael Blomkvist

For my observation on Flandry's dealings with Leon Ammon, see here.


"...realized he was unscrupulous enough to do a deal with Bjorck, then double-cross him. He felt no guilt. Bjorck was a policeman who had committed crimes."
-Stieg Larsson, The Girl Who Played With Fire (London, 2009), Chapter 19, p. 319.

Ammon is a criminal but Flandry has accepted his hospitality. Bjork is a policeman who has used prostitutes but I would not double-cross him. It seems to me that we should deal fairly with those who do not deal fairly with others.

Have I said this here before? A Chilean general interviewed on British television seemed to think that anything goes in civil wars: shootings, torture etc. I would wish to assure the general that, in the unlikely event that he became my prisoner in a civil war, then he would not be summarily shot or tortured, at least not by me.

I thought that the parallel thinking between Flandry and Blomkvist warranted a post and also raised an important moral question.

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

I agree with what you said about Flandry, having accepted his hospitality and agreed to the job Ammon offered, Flandry should deal fairly with him.

And the hatreds and passions aroused by civil wars can make that kind of conflict even worse than "ordinary" wars. One thinks of how the French Revolutionaries' brutal crushing of the Vendeans, for example, caused hatreds in the west of France which lingers there to this day. So, if at all possible, even in civil wars the belligerents should take pains to scrupulously observe the laws and customs of wars attempting to set some limits on the harm done.