I’ve just finished Barbara Tuchman’s The Guns of August, and I’m generally trying to get myself better acquainted with the societal and political conditions that surrounded the World Wars.
But who needs real history? For a serious lesson in statecraft and warcraft, check out Domhnall O’Huigin’s explanation of the political context of the universe of Super Mario, as explained on Quora:
The Mushroom Kingdom is currently ruled by Princess Peach who is a member of the minority human population.
As the least numerous faction, humans in the Mushroom Kingdom are under constant threat from within and without.
Internal threats include a significant terrorist faction led by Bowser, the leader of the Koopas; one of the most populous species in the Kingdom.
It is important to note that Bowser does not command the allegiance of all Koopas, but those under his authority are organised into paramilitary ranks or units in a caste-like system. This concentration of political power in a single leader arguably makes Bowser a fascist. Although as he self-styles himself “King Koopa” it is apparent that he claims (or is seeking) parity of esteem with Princess Peach; that is to say that he does not regard himself as a ‘terrorist’ but as a ‘freedom fighter’ or entitled ruler in his own right.
It is precisely this self-contained, quasi-military structure that has allowed Bowser to remain a thorn in Princess Peach’s side for this long, culminating in his kidnap of her, in an attempt to force her to marry him and therefore achieve ‘legitimate’ control over the Kingdom. Only the intervention of the independent oligarch (or ‘warchief’, depending on your point of view) known as “Mario” – see below – prevented this from occurring.
Sounds to me like Mario’s a kind of Genghis Khan, marauding across alien lands. But I’m no historian.
2 thoughts on “Bowser the Fascist, Mario the Warchief”
I’d agree with you but as mario clearly makes a point of collecting gold coins as often as possible I’d say he’s a contract mercenary rather than a warchief.
Basically, everything in the world is the fault of Gavrillo Princip. He essentially destroyed the world and replaced it with what we have. He ended the rule of kings and the age of empire.Sure, he was just the fuse, but he sure made the world go boom.
The First World War was the one that made people hate war. That’s something.
After Tuchman, your next step is Lyn MacDonald, whose books are essentially living history by Great war veterans. “1914” is the first volume.
Leave Keegan for later. His book is an overview and the real interesting stuff is personal.