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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 3/15/13

Crime And Blunder. The First Victim Of The "Drone' Attack

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Message Mark Sashine
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(Article changed on March 15, 2013 at 16:47)

(Article changed on March 15, 2013 at 16:36)

From Bibliothèque de l'Ordre des Avocats, Palais de Justice de Paris
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Bibliothèque de l'Ordre des Avocats, Palais de Justice de Paris by raphael.chekroun

Lost Warriors by didy b




In 1804  Napoleon Bonaparte, the    First Consul of the   French Republic     quelled an extended plot against him, funded   lavishly by English. In that plot for the first time the Royalists and   Jacobins united   in one organization   and with one goal in mind. A sweep of arrests revealed several long -- term plans meticulously   developed by   people whom Napoleon knew personally. General Moreau was exiled to the US. General Pichegru   was   found strangled in prison.   The   subsequent trial   sentenced   thirteen more plotters to death.    Napoleon's police   though   continued   the investigation   and insisted that the   plotters were in concert   with one of the former French Royals, currently living   in Germany. They did not know which one though.

Napoleon, being a man of action found   a culprit in a young and dashing duke of   Enghien, two years    younger than the First Consul. The duke, the last descendant of the Konde family   spends   his pension from England   having fun   in   the German border town of   Ettenheim,   just across the Rheine. There he watches France through the telescope and boasts to his friends that   the time will come   when he returns to Paris. He   seems all talk and   nothing else. French agents discard him as a hopeless buffoon useful though to uncover his connections. Nevertheless, Napoleon decides to make an example of him. First Consul himself   plans the kidnapping operation down to the last detail. The    special forces unit of the time raids the peaceful German   town and   seizes the duke. He then is brought   in   secrecy to   Vincennes castle   and tried by a Military Commission with no lawyers   present. The young man behaves bravely   and denies any plots although admits his   bad feelings towards the    French   Republic. He is sentenced   to death by firing   squad. Napoleon tells his confidants that he will    pardon the young man   but on the same night   the duke is executed.


That's when Talleyrand, the grand sage of Foreign Affairs says to Napoleon, "That was worse than a crime; that was a blunder."


  First Consul   felt something wrong but he   brushed that aside.   He   did not understand that   that seemingly   unimportant   act, one of many was a signal to Humanity   as it was at that time that it was dealing with   someone who does not care   for   any laws, much less   the ones of his own, a Barbarian masquerading as a future   new    ruler of the world.    And the reaction was very swift indeed.   Fairly soon   the   same Talleyrand offered his services     to Russia as a covert agent. In   the private discussion with the Czar Alexander he   muses, "Russia is not civilized but its sovereign   is. France is civilized but its ruler is not." Talleyrand risks his life but   his decision is made.


The shadow of the blunder   follows Napoleon   ever since. In   the peak of his   fame, after entering   Moscow he writes   a letter to Alexander, offering peace   with the best intentions.   Commander- in -- Chief Kutuzov answers icily , "War had only started."

During the subsequent campaign after the total failure in Russia,   the European Coalition forces become relentless; at the   "Battle of Nations' at Leipzig,   a Swedish   Army,   lead by   Bernadotte, former   Napoleon's marshal enters the battle   on the side of the Coalition and French are defeated. Moreover, when in 1815 Napoleon escapes from Elba   and   after his triumph in France   offers   peace to all powers- they immediately unite against him;   on the fateful   fields of Waterloo    English and Prussians   deliver a final   blow to the Barbarian from Corsica.   That was the    final consequence of the blunder in 1804.


History    laughs   at us sometimes.   Napoleon, of course, was not only much more a personality and a   statesman than Bush and Obama   risen to the power of ten.   Unlike them he not only    built his own destiny but France also; he   sure as Hell had all the right to be   afraid   and even paranoid   for his safety; just before that plot an incendiary   device   exploded on his way, killing a lot of people. Napoleon also    was technically an autocratic dictator, the First Consul was fully within his power and   right to do what he did.   And still, it was   WORSE THAN A CRIME. It   was worse than even killing 5000 Turkish prisoners during the campaign in Egypt. It     was worse than a crime because at that very moment   he lost the spiritual support of all   progressively   thinking people in Europe;   in their minds he   stopped   being an enlightened   leader of the   New Order   and became one of many ruthless powermongers, the ones that were a many before and will be a many after. He lost the   support of the people.   They returned to their usual indifference. And he did not even notice that. But Talleyrand noticed.

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The writer is 66 years old, semi- retired engineer, PhD, PE, CEM. I write fiction on a regular basis and I am also 10 years on OEN.

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