Sunday, January 23, 2011

The Perpetual War

The image of a weapon which would bring an end to the devastation of trench warfare in World War 1 seems almost humorous today. It was on the February 1917 cover of the magazine The Electrical Experimenter. The war ended on November 11, 1918 amidst celebration abroad but guarded trepidation at the front.

"The design of this mobile dreadnaught, with its steel-tired, spoked wheels, suggests that its inventor may have been influenced by agricultural tractors or perhaps an amusement park Ferris wheel. The trench destroyer also embodies the common goal of military visionaries: maximum offensive power with total defensive security."

George Orwell in Nineteen Eighty-Four (1949) wrote of the perpetual war which advanced the cause of nations who wanted to distract and keep people focused on a war rather than on other domestic issues. One wonders when the perpetual war will end. When will the lion lie down with the lamb and there will be war no more?

Image and reference via Boing Boing