The Corner

The War of the Tribes

Thought for the day (after reading JPod’s fine bellwether column in this morning’s newspaper.

“You cannot be objective about an aerial torpedo. And the horror we feel of these things has led to this conclusion: if someone drops a bomb on your mother, go and drop two bombs on his mother. The only apparent alternatives are to smash dwelling houses to powder, blow out human entrails and burn holes in children with thermite, or to be enslaved by people who are more ready to do these things than you are yourself; as yet no one has suggested a practicable way out.”

—George Orwell, reviewing Arthur Koestler’s Spanish Testament for the magazine Time and Tide, Feb. 5, 1938.

Note the date. WW2 hadn’t even officially started.

John Derbyshire — Mr. Derbyshire is a former contributing editor of National Review.

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