Posts Tagged ‘Louis XIV’

Learn History Correctly, Repeat After Me: French Sun King Louis XIV Was an Abominable Butcher & Catastrophe

July 4, 2018

France is the historical core of civilization (the Frankish conquest of Europe didn’t happen just militarily, but philosophically). What exactly happened in French history and why informs the nature and evolution of civilization, it is way too important to be left to the French. Just a recent small example: This is because of the French obsession with Equality that “All men are created equal…” was added to the US Constitution, as its 14th Amendment, July 9, 1868 (belatedly following “Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité” of the French Constitution of 1789…)

Naturally, it turns out that some received truths in French history are atrocious lies. Many died, many more will, lest one explains what went wrong, one can dissect it now, thus enlightening future guidance through similar situations which will arise, or have already arisen.

Learning history is abominable, when it is fake history, whereas, it is excellent when it is correct history. Who, what, decides what is correct, and what’s not? The debate! It is wise to consider that those who refuse to debate, and whose logic is missing some dimensions keys to the debate are fake.  (I am having a one way debate with the plutocratic universities, so hopefully, they will lose!)

Studying historical texts is called historiography. It is increasingly helped by archeology, and new techniques such as histology, chemistry, genetics, nuclear physics, etc. It is also helped by the infusing of thinking by modern police methods.

Under Philippe IV Le Bel, by 1300 CE, a modern police force had evolved: all the Templar Knights were arrested at the same time (catching them by surprise, preventing armed resistance). The usage of torture was systematic, and gave excellent results in the pliers of dedicated specialists to find out what happened.  

However, statements made under torture couldn’t be used in court, by law. A century later, any torture of the famous warrior Joan of Arc was discussed and rejected, because the judges didn’t want her declarations to be stained by duress. By 1600 CE, torture was rarely used in France: the police methods were much more clever and the statements made were legally admissible.

Now historians going over 25 centuries old texts, using modern police smarts can guess what was really going on. For example at some point in Herodotus, a discourse of Themistocles the Athenian arch-general, famous victor of Salamis, there was what is after careful consideration, clearly a typo: a “your” was replaced by a “our”.  Police methods are used: general suspicion. For example Plutarch wrote extensively about Themistocles, but that is now put under the light of his systematic bias against the great Greek strategist. 

Louis XIV sent Dragons to live with Huguenots. Caption: Who can resist me is very strong; Force primes reason; “New Missionaries Under the Order of Louis The Great. The gun appears as an invincible reason, and the heretic signs his conversion…


Louis XIV was an abominable butcher and dictator. Louis XIV, on the face of it was a (“civil”) war criminal, a human right violator on such a scale he should have got life in prison. This is my overall opinion, although I do roughly agree with many of the compliments one usually offers to that monarch. However one tends to omit important dimensions of Louis XIV’s reign. Once one integrates them, the resulting overall mood is extremely critical.
Louis XIV was imprinted by the Fronde and his arrogant mother: “Monsieur, nous ne sommes pas en République” did she say to the head of the Paris Parliament (“Sir, weren’t in a republic”)

Louis XIV exhibited a first clear case of misbehaving when he cancelled the inquiry in the Affaires des Poisons, when it implicated his de facto second wife (“mistress”). He threw the whole file in the fire.

He also decided not to consult with the People anymore (“Etats Generaux”), and even cancelled consulting with the 17 or so Parliaments. Louis XVI would go back to these, a century later, but, by then, it was too late, after a century of autocracy.

The major disaster of Louis atrocious rule was the “Revocation de l’Edit de Nantes”, an edict of his grandfather making possible the life of Protestants in mostly Catholic France. The Revocation made life impossible for two million Protestants in France (10% of the population, often the most gifted). Most of them left, weakening France, and storing fuel for wars against Louis XIV, that is France. The result was the (world war) of the Spanish Succession, which ravaged Europe. That brought more than 1.2 million killed, a high percentage of the european population, and France lost sizable territory.

The admiration of the all too many French for Louis XIV is just as immoral and demented as the admiration for Napoleon (who stole the revolution for his personal profit), or Joan of Arc (a pawn of the queen of Aragon and the three other kingdoms, who relaunched the “100 years war”, initially a civil war, between the French and the French, which lasted, as a result, nearly five centuries)…

Louis XIV finally got some divine justice visited on him: nearly all his heir died, and he felt culprit of the death of his somewhat transgender brother. He took three weeks to die of gangrene, getting to smell as bad physically as he did spiritually. He accused his bad advisers to have misled him about the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. To his only surviving heir, his 5 year-old great-grandson, Louis XV he said, on his smelly deathbed: “Do not follow the bad example which I have set you; I have often undertaken war too lightly and have sustained it for vanity. Do not imitate me, but be a peaceful prince, and may you apply yourself principally to the alleviation of the burdens of your subjects.”

This being said, some of the early wars of Louis XIV’s reign were good wars: the war with Spain had to be finished: Spain, a theocratic fascist state had fought France for two centuries, and was initially on a land grab motivated by extreme greed. France, after helping to give birth to the Netherlands, in an eighty year war, finally defeated the “Spanish Squares”. The specific badness of Spain emanated from the religious fanaticism of Catholicism. Louis XIV would marry the Infante of Spain, settling the confrontation, after Spain’s military defeat.

Louis XIV’s self-diagnosed disastrous reign explains why so many somewhat rabid German generals, for centuries to come had French names: they descended from French Protestant refugees… It also explains why France went from unquestioned first power in Europe into a questionable, much less enlightened entity. Now that process was already launched by Louis XI and Francois Premier. Francois Premier insisted to burn printers (although he stopped short of attacking directly famous surgeon and writer Rabelais..) The case of Louis XI, famous for putting his famous enemies in cages, is even more interesting: Louis XI protected the Huguenots with the French army!

That puts the fanaticism of Louis XIV, two centuries later in an even more brutal light. I repeat: Louis XI, often derided as a cruel king,  actually protected the Protestants (by the way, that was before Luther, who was born in 1483, the same year when Louis XI died… showing that, to the surprise of the Anglo-Saxon-centric view, Protestantism was much older than Luther, and emanated from France. So Louis XIV destroyed a remarkable French invention. He was not just a destroyer, he was anti-French. Yes, I repeat: who is, for some the quintessential incarnation of Frenchitude, Louis XIV, was actually anti-French! His wanton destruction of France was no happenstance, but a system (something he recognized, as accused his “advisers”, at the end of his life)


Louis XIV could be prudent: asked by the king of England to help him out against the rebels, with the French army, the world’s mightiest, he declined (but accepted his family as refugees). However that one backfired as the Dutch new king of England was determined to destroy Louis XIV (always that revocation: the Netherlands was full of Protestants).

And Louis XIV did some good things: He financed a lot of arts, intelligentsia and science (famously financing the Dutch physicist Huyghens, the earliest theoretician of waves…)

But, once again, what matters first is the first order of things: Louis XIV was a disaster for France and Europe.

Louis himself said it, as the disease was devouring him and he rotted away. His doctor asked him if he hurt. Louis replied:”What hurts me even more is to see my people suffering.”

Well, one has to get it right cognitively speaking. Out of brutish ignorance, grows pain.

And for those who, to this day, don’t see Louis’ reign for what he saw it: there is something wrong with your cognitive system. Louis XIV was not just about France. France was central to the Enlightenment, and Louis wore its clothes roudly, claiming to be Enlightened him: that’s implicit in “Sun King”! However, Louis XIV set up the mood for Hitler. Actually Prussia became racist against Jews and Poles AFTER Louis XIV hunted the Huguenots as if they were poorly educated pests. Successful hatred and racism breed and multiply. Those who still tolerate the Self-worshiping Louis XIV are part of the problem. They may say, they will say:’Oh, we didn’t know!” However, then, why do you admire who you don’t know? Because you admire the thought systems which make worshiping strong men glorious? But isn’t that a more general, hence greater evil?

Patrice Ayme

Christian Civilization Never Existed

December 10, 2015

Many fanatics, Christian or Muslim, insist that there was a “Christian Civilization”. Well, no. It’s not because people with vested interest repeat always the same thing, that it is decisively supported by the facts. It is not because some aspects of a civilization are of such and such a nature, that one particular aspect defines the whole thing. The philosophical, legal and behavioral foundations of the West were not “Christian”. Christianism was the fig leaf thrown, by the Roman plutocracy, over the apocalypse it preferred to the taxing continuance of civilization.

Although something called “Christianity” contributed to civilization considerably, the Christianism of bishop (Saint) Jerome, a “Founding Father of the Church“, in 400 CE Milan, was very different from the idiosyncratic Pagano-Christianism of Consul (and king of the Franks) Clovis in 500 CE (who re-invented Christianism thoroughly).

As so-called “Christmas” approaches, it’s good to remember that the Winter Solstice feast was Greco-Roman, and preceded the displacement of “Jesus” birth to the Winter Solstice, by more than a millennium.

“Christian” Hatred Of The Body Was Rejected By The Popes Themselves

“Christian” Hatred Of The Body Was Rejected By The Popes Themselves

[“What spirit is so empty and blind, that it cannot recognize the fact that the foot is more noble than the shoe, and skin more beautiful than the garment with which it is clothed?” Michelangelo.]

Christianism initially hated the body, in opposition to Greco-Roman civilization: love the body, and soon you will love the mind, and will want one of your own.

So Christianism closed and destroyed the baths (thus promoting devastating, civilization destroying, epidemics among the 99%) and longed for the Apocalypse (generously provided by the telling collaboration of Roman plutocrats and invading barbarians: the analogy with Islamism now is uncomfortable! Our plutocrats have been busy plotting with Islamists ever since before the Great Bitter Lake Conspiracy!)

Although some lunatics tried to force an authentic Christian civilization, it became, literally, a Non Sequitur: it’s now called the “Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire”. When one wishes for the Apocalypse as Christians and later Muslims, wished, it should be considered synonymous to the decline and fall of civilization, society, population, reading skills, security, economics, and all and any standards of sophistication.

See Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, Pakistan, Sudan, Yemen… (And yes, Somalia, Sudan, and more specifically Yemen, can be compared to say, Ethiopia, which is doing incomparably better.)

What do I mean by the non-existence of “Christian Civilization”? Consider the tyrannical, self-obsessed, much adulated cretin, Louis XIV of France, the self-described, self-adoring “Sun-King” (a bloody dictator much celebrated in France this year, as he croaked 300 years ago, justly covered by gangrene, from his toes, to the top of his head. Louis’ painful and disgusting three weeks of gangrene is the only indication from his reign, which I can discern, that there may be, after all, a God).

Louis XIV tried to make France into a Catholic society, by revoking the Edict of Nantes of his excellent grandfather, Henri IV. That was more than weird: a century earlier, under Catherine of Medici, queen of France, a similar episode had been launched, the Massacre de la Saint-Barthélemy. Not only did that surprise assault in the middle of the night, killed immediately 30,000, and most of France’s intellectual elite (which could only condemn and despise Catholicism), but it launched no less than seven religious wars in 36 years, bleeding France, killing up to more than 20% of the population (so Syria has a way to go! By the way, those who wonder where the French hostility to Abraham’s god comes from, should study this).

I repeat: in less than 40 years, wars among Christians in France, killed more than 4 million people (and terrorized everybody).  Nor was it the first time: more tan a million Cathars, and all their works were annihilated by Christians around 1200 CE. And, in the Fifteenth Century, Protestants were hunted like wild beasts by Catholics (to the point Louis XI had to intervene, reminding all that killing people for religious reasons was against the law, and sending the army!)

How civilized is all that Christianism? When Rome was far removed from Christianism, no such massacre ever happened.

So here was that bloody imbecile, Louis the Blood King, trying the same trick all over again, all by himself (and his fanatical wife). It is still a great disease that such a creep is revered abjectly, by the French elite.

Thus Louis The Pervert threw out and abominably abused millions of Protestants. Many Protestants fled (that’s why there is winemaking in South Africa, and why so many Germans have French names). As protestants tended to be smarter, their flight made France much more idiotic, and thus more hospitable to Louis the Pervert and his vicious entourage of ill disguised monsters. Thus obnoxious critters make an environment hospitable to themselves

There is something in common between that so-called “Sun King” and the unfortunate fiction of Camus, Mr. Meursault, who kills an Arab, just because he can, and got too much sun, and could not care less. Louis XIV was the real life Meursault, and Camus channeling unconsciously that abomination of French history. Louis XIV killed the Protestants, just because he could, could not care less, and had too much sun.

Too bad Meursault and the Sun-King are still revered: it’s a sickness of the mood.

Christian propagandists always insisted that there was such a thing as “Christian Civilization”. But there was not.

The West was NOT A CHRISTIAN CIVILIZATION. It looked like one twice: around 400 CE, and around 1400 CE. But, in either case, although an attempt was made, the basic law was NOT Christian, but Roman (or the Salic law of the Franks, which was Roman written).

The attempt around 400 CE, a government of bishops, petered out right away. True Milan’s Saint Jerome, the most prominent “Founding Father of the Church”, had emperor Theodosius begging forgiveness (for some massacre). But then the Roman State, short in cash, put the Franks in charge of defending the North West “Limes” (frontier).

A century later, having established a huge “Imperium” (= Roman military command), the Franks sort of converted to Catholicism, modifying it extensively in the process, and submitting the Popes, for centuries to come.

The Franks re-established Roman (Late) Republican tolerance for ALL religions.

In other words, the empire of the Franks, the “Imperium Francorum” of 600 CE, was much more civilized than today’s Saudi Arabia. Arguably Arabia of 600 CE was more civilized than today’s Arabia, in the sense that Christianism, Judaism and the Cult of the Moon in Mecca, were all practiced without known religious massacre (the first religious holocaust was Muhammad’s personal annihilation of a Jewish tribe, a bit later; Muhammad is on the record as of the opinion that whoever insulted him should die, a tradition Muslims are keen, to this day, to carry forward, in the name of their Rophet; don’t ask me what a Rophet is).

The tolerance was extended to much more than Jews, Pagans (the Franks were de facto Christianized Pagans for centuries), Muslims, etc. By 800 CE, the “Renovated Roman Empire” led by Charlemagne, was at peace and the world’s richest

The “Final Solution” was Nazi (although I have accused many times Christianism to have inspired it). The “Manifest Destiny” was not particularly Christian (Founding Fathers and their preceding generation were very anti-Christian, and for “Nature’s God”). The Crusades were, mostly, a counter-attack (although I am very anti-crusades, that’s what they were in first order).

The annihilation of the Natives did not have to be a consequence from the Christian nature of the invaders. A very good example is the French, who never eradicated a population of Natives (and that’s why they lost America!)

“Secular ideologies” may have been by far the biggest mass killers…. Because they suppress everything else. In primitive societies the kill ratio is more like 50% (or at least 25%), whereas the two World Wars killed rather around 2% to 4% (at most, directly and indirectly, through famines and diseases they contributed to)

The preceding has to be kept in mind when inanities about Islam, and an “Islamist Civilization” are proffered, just because people are conditioned to mouth them, and believe it’s the truth, because everybody says it. It’s not because all the sheep bleat the same, that bleating is the truth.

This being said, because of the insistence of raw Islam to apply Islamist Law, instead of secular law, made “Islamist Civilization” much more of a reality. Islam wants to be everything, leaving no space for anything else. Islam wants to be all of society, and even to occupy visual space. Islam wants to be more than a civilization, it wants to be an obsession.

However, an inspection of history shows that all period of really shining civilization under “Islam” seemed to have involved see through dresses more than niqab, chador, and other attempts to make women into something that should be hidden.he vast body). Contributions by non-Muslims (Jews and Christian) tend to dominate (they were the majority for centuries).

Regimes which interpreted the Qur’an literally were highly successful, especially initially, thanks to ruthless surprise: initial conquest, from Spain to Central Asia, assaults of India, Indonesia, conquest of Anatolia by the just Islamized Turks, and a reconquest of Spanish Caliphate by savage, Fundamentalist Muslims from the desert. It ultimately backfired (except in the case of the Turks, arguably). For example the re-reconquest of Spain, made the “Reconquista” by the Catholics much more savage and thorough…

Many supposed “characteristics” of “Christianism” were established centuries before Christianism was imposed on the Greco-Roman world by emperors from Constantine to Theodosius, in the fateful Fourth Century. For example welfare and scholarship for worthy students was established by 100 CE (under emperor Trajan).

The Roman world kept on going, even, and especially after the Decline and Fall of the Roman imperial state. When Saint Louis, a Christian Fundamentalist and Jihadist (“Crusader”) of the Twelfth Century expressed, in writing his burning desire to “plant a knife in the belly of a Jew or Unbeliever” (“nothing would please me more”) he recognized he could not do it, because, well the (Salic and Roman) Law forbid him to do so.

Sharia Christian, or not never ruled the West very long (although, sometimes, it made sparks: see Bruno being burned alive). We are not going to start now.

Patrice Ayme’

Don’t Feed the Bear: All Putin Needs Is Comfy War

February 11, 2015


The French and German leaders are meeting again with Putin to make him recover reason: it reminds me of Munich, 1938, when the French and British leaders were trying to make Hitler reasonable.

France and Germany together have a slightly larger population than Russia, but three and a half time the GDP. (By the way, what happened to Britain? Well London is full of Russian plutocrats and banking institutions keen to make Assad and Putin possible; hence the British discretion.)

An Ukrainian in the street interviewed by German TV said it was out of the question to give territory to Putin: if one gives him a finger, he will take the entire arm.

Putin Wants "The Big Country" Back, & Its Prospect of Endless War

Putin Wants “The Big Country” Back, & Its Prospect of Endless War

In the West, cowardly pacifists say: do not provoke Putin, do as he says, he has nukes and will attack, if lethal defensive weapons are sent to Ukraine. That makes them collaborators of evil.

This is rather curious that pacifists use a fundamentally bellicose argument: don’t try to stop the mad man, he may get offended, and kill everybody.

Indeed, a mad man’s madness with criminal insanity overtones, makes the case for the greatest severity. So the essence of the pacifist whining call for the greatest severity to be applied on Putin, right away.

Because what are pacifists saying? Putin is the most dangerous Leader, ever. So let’s be nice to him.

It is now known that, had the USA and Britain be as firm as France against Hitler in the 1930s, Hitler’s own generals would have made a coup against him.

But, instead, Britain and the USA made concession after concession to Hitler. So Hitler flew from success to success, undermining any mood critical of him. How can one criticize a winner? Clearly, it was unpatriotic. It made the top German generals and marshals who thought that the dictator was completely crazy, and a danger to Germany look like traitors.

Something similar is developing with Putin. As he occupied and annexed territory in Georgia, Moldavia, and now Ukraine, and the West proved incapable to stop him, he looks ever more like a winner. Putin’s avowed goal is to bring back what he calls the “New Russia” (half of Ukraine) and the “Big Country” (the USSR). Pacifists say that the fundamental strategic interest of Russia is at play, so . di, Putin flies from success to success.

So where does Putin stop? This is what pacifists have to know, if they do not want to be simple collaborators of evil.

But of course, they don’t know.

Should we then keep our fingers cross, and hope for the best?


Because Putin killed only 100,000 in Chechnya? Because Catherine the Great stopped 80 kilometers from Berlin? Not a safe bet: Catherine did not have nukes.

Behaving now as nothing will stop Putin, but for the application of overwhelming force is not safe, but it is the safest strategy. If Putin is completely crazy, overwhelming force won’t stop him. But nothing will anyway, especially after he has fully armed himself, as he is presently doing, Hitler-like.

If Putin is not completely crazy, the threat of overwhelming force will stop him.

Not trying to stop him, if he is not completely crazy, will certainly make Putin completely crazy. Be it completely crazy with greed.

As I tried to explain, Putin, like Hitler before him, and Napoleon, and many (not all) conquerors before him, has discovered that war unites the People behind him, and make all the People think as one, and the name of that one, is Putin. This is what I call the fascist instinct. It is crucial to enable a (relatively) weak primate, far from any tree, to conquer the Savannah and Steppe, heretofore ruled by formidable predators.

Putin’s rule has been a disaster. Thus he needs to activate the fascist instinct in the Russian People. Thus he needs war.

Thus, if pacifists give him Ukraine, Putin will be deeply unhappy: he did not want Ukraine. He wanted war. War gives him fascism, thus the ability to rule. In this light, the reign of Louis XIV of France can be better understood.

After millions of Protestants had left France, and France has lost considerable territory in continuous wars, Louis XIV of France, the self-described “Sun-King” (“Roi-Soleil”) feebly bleated that his advisers had poorly advised him about Protestants: it had not been a good idea to have harassed, despoiled, and submit them to “Dragonades” (occupation of Protestant households by elite troops called “Dragons”).

However, Louis XIV, a dedicated fascist, hater of the “Republic”, lied (as fascists are wont to). Louis XIV had continual wars, and particularly against innocent civilians, because he needed continual wars, because that justified his fascist, personal rule.

Louis XIV was not afraid of war, he was afraid of peace, because peace meant the Parliament may want to re-establish the Republic again (which is what the “Fronde” was all about).

Napoleon faithfully executed the same scheme (because De Sade, one of the Revolution’s principals, had criticized the aggressive, expansionist war making, Napoleon put him in a mental asylum).

The same exact mechanism caused the First World War, with the Kaiser playing the role of Louis XIV. The Jews played the role of the Protestants under Louis XIV.

Soon Stalin would institute continual internal war, to justify the dictatorship of the Politburo which he headed. Hitler repeated the method.

So are we condemned to repeat history? Not so, if we learn how it works.

Putin got his 85% approval rating, from his activation of the fascist instinct.

However, the very latest polls show that the Russian People is getting wary of Putin’s protest of innocence about the war: 70 percent stated that Russia was assisting the breakaway rebels of Donetsk and Luhansk. Good. However, the same polling show that now most Russians think that establishing “Novorossia” (“New Russia”) is a good idea.

In other words, Russians are turning t the Dark Side: they know their dictator is making war in a foreign nation, but they are starting to approve the invasion of that nation, and its annexation.


Same story as what happened in the German collective psyche after Hitler annexed the Republic of Austria. Then the Germans became favorable to other annexations (Czechoslovakia, some Baltic states, much of Poland, etc.) Because Hitler had proven to be a winner.

As far as the Russians are concerned, Putin is a winner, so he has got to be right. Not right on the facts, but morally right: Ukraine, like Georgia or Moldova, is Russian property.

Want to turn Putin into a loser? Do it on the battlefield. And do like him: play dirty, send efficient weapons stealthily first.



July 3, 2008


“Mugabe must go, and Mbeki must consider the blood on his hands that tarnishes his legacy.” points out Roger Cohen (Passages, NYT/IHT, July 2, 2008). Mugabe is the dictator of Zimbabwe, and Mbeki the president of South Africa. South Africa could get rid of Mugabe in 24 hours if it wanted (and the UN would approve). Ladislav Nemec (from California) then cogently commented that: “The French did not mind the catastrophe of Napoleonic wars and [Napoleon’s] tomb in Paris is very elaborate, indeed. Glorious days, many of them still believe. And it all happened some 200 years ago and, no doubt, the French consider themselves VERY smart.” (Passages).

This is an excellent and crucial observation about protesting against fascist dictatorships: as long as some fascist dictatorships are admired, why to discriminate against others? What’s good for France would be bad for Zimbabwe? Why?

Was Mugabe as bad for Zimbabwe as Napoleon was for Europe? Certainly not. Certainly Mugabe did not come out of his country and destroy most of Africa, as Napoleon did with most of Europe (from Portugal to Moscow).

Recently millions of French people, expressing a revelation that came belatedly, loudly voiced their view of Napoleon as the enslaver, murderer and dictator that he really was. In particular, French people of mixed African descent have taken note of Napoleon horribly racist slave policies. Napoleon was opposed in his times, and he thought smart to murder, or imprison to death, several of his opponents, in ignominious ways. In modern times, the European Court of Justice would have Napoleon arrested and tried as a criminal. Napoleon’s guilt was clearer than the one of the ex Serbian president.

It’s philosophically intolerable that Napoleon is revered as much as he is (and not just by the French!). From the modern point of view, it’s hard to find anything good about him. He was a good general, true, but he had superlative troops, by far the best in the world at the time (and they made a huge difference, for example at the battle of Austerlitz, where the dogged defense, house to house of forced-marched-through-the-night, rushed-in soldiers held the center miraculously. Austerlitz is viewed as Napoleon’s greatest victory, but clearly, without superlatively experienced and motivated soldiers, he would not have won). After nominating himself “emperor”, he had become a casus belli all by himself.

Napoleon killed two million Frenchmen in useless wars, and few millions more other Europeans besides. Perhaps his most unique achievement was to have Cossacks parading in Paris after his fall.

So why the great Napoleonic cult? At first sight, because Napoleon destroyed the Revolution. That is what the French upper bourgeoisie and the exiled aristocrats wanted. Napoleon was their mindless little tool, as he idiotically went around seeking glory in all the wrong places and the most criminal ways.

In the aftermath of his ill fated reign, the plutocratic French upper class was able to reestablish a lot of the old order, even the monarchy (under a constitutional form). The Napoleonic cult has been a highly successful form of class propaganda. The lower classes were made to revere the one who had precisely reestablished their oppression and culled their numbers, besides mauling the ideals of the French revolution. This class analysis is far from the whole motivation for the cult, though, as we will explain.

Nowadays, if French intellectuals wanted to do something particularly useful, they could reconsider French history in a more critical way. It would make it easier for all of us to understand the mechanisms of the adulation despots bring forth in their subjects.

Another atrocious French dictator, astoundingly admired to this day, was Louis XIV. Louis destroyed lots of Germany, and organized horrible persecutions against non Catholics inside France (after violating the Edict of Nantes of his own grandfather, Henri IV, who had put an end to the religious wars). France lost hundreds of thousands of her best citizens (Some fled to Germany and their descendants would roll back in at general’s rank with the Nazi tanks in 1940! Some French Protestants fled all the way to South Africa, and planted grapes there). Millions more Frenchmen suffered twenty years of “Dragonades” (occupation of parts of France by the King’s “Dragons”, who lived on the land, oppressing, raping, stealing, terrorizing non Catholics, in the hope they would flee the country too). At the end of his life, after a seventy-two year reign, agonizing with gangrene over three weeks, Louis XIV confided that what hurt him the most was how much his subjects suffered (from poverty, famine, etc.). He accused bad advisers, we have to accuse the lack of democracy.

Why the admiration for Louis XIV? Differently from Napoleon, he accomplished some positive things. But, overall, it’s the grip of the fascist instinct that mostly fuels the admiration little men have for great, bad, mean, sun like leaders doing great, bad, mean, glorious horrors. Louis XIV played it like a violin, and some listen to his melody to this day.

Fundamentally men are glorified monkeys, and monkeys are conditioned to follow great, bad, mean, glorious leaders who allow them access to their daily water by the terror they inspire in all beasts alike, and the predators waiting in the shadows. People talk about “glory” to evoke that timeless feeling of being part of an all triumphant mob. It’s the essence of the fascist instinct. Napoleon has been loved throughout the world and history for that extremely wrong reason, and a few others, even worse. Time has come to expose those reasons, to get rid of them. Those same reasons help provide Mugabe’s goons with a lot of intimate pleasure. 

As long as a people as self admiring for their own smartness as the French cannot finalize a verdict of culpability about Louis XIV and Napoleon quite a bit in the way they did about Hitler, there is not enough enlightenment. All the more since there was a genealogy of ideas from Louis XIV, Napoleon, the Kaiser Wilhelm, and finally Hitler. The French admirers of Napoleon were, and are, Nazis at heart in the most important respect of the adulation for brute, overwhelming, lethal force. Amusingly, when Napoleon attacked Russia, a lot of his army was German (and included 20,000 Prussians sent by the Prussian state). The Nazis, self consciously, viewed themselves as the heirs of Napoleon, and tried to do better than him. 

Besides a deeper psychoanalysis, what is also lacking is some moral coherence in the analysis of history. Absent moral coherence, our civilization looks hypocritical and racist. Simply because, as proven by the facts behind this sort of incoherence, it is.

Patrice Ayme.